I can see why Dragon Ball fans are so in love with Arc System Works upcoming fighting game, Dragon Ball FighterZ. With a roster full of fan favorite characters from the anime, attention to detail, colorful visuals, it’s basically a Dragon Ball fans dream come true. Now you can settle those long debated argument of who’s better.
I am not a Dragon Ball fan however. In fact, I have almost zero knowledge of the series, the characters, or what exactly a Dragon Ball is. I mean, I certainly know of the anime, but I’ve never sat down to watch the show or play any of the previous games. Yet, I’m oddly excited for this game’s impending launch.
I’m a sucker for versus style fighting games, originally made popular by the Marvel vs series of games back in the day. These games focus more on the action side of fighting, typically pitting two teams of three against one another using flashy/over the top abilities, tag-ins, assists, and more. Dragon Ball FighterZ definitely ticks all of these check boxes.
While the game is a 3 on 3 fighter at its core, it looks like an episode of the anime come to life with a fantastic sense of style layered on top. For example, taking out a character with a heavy attack sends them flying outside of the stage, crashing into a mountain or slamming into the side of a building. Other times, characters like Goku fires off a massive fireball stream which KOs the opponent and pushes the camera back to reveal this massive blue light seen from miles away. It seems like many characters can perform these destructive finish moves and I just love how flashy they are.
That said, the beta was fairly bare bones. Outside of an online match, players could participate in training segments. While it was good to learn the mechanics of the game, the mode wasn’t really intended to let players learn the ins and outs of the available characters. You were pretty much limited to Adult Gohan. I would have loved a simple practice mode or a way to spar against the AI. Learning characters while fighting another human online isn’t the best way to get things done.
It’s been well documented that the beta suffered from connection and server issues. While it sucks, I’d rather have these issues crop up now instead of on day one. Hopefully Arc and Bandai Namco can resolve these issues prior to launch in a week.
Overall, for a Dragon Ball n00b like myself, I had a lot of fun. I can’t say if this game will push me towards the franchise or make me care about what’s going on, but the gameplay was immensely satisfying. Considering the limited scope of the beta, I’m definitely curious to see what the retail version of the game is like.
Did you get hands on time with the beta? Feel free to share your thoughts below.