Review by alphab3t
"It really is super"
Super Dragonball Z is a Japanese Arcade to PS2 port, then soon released to America and PAL regions. This game is a 3D vs fighting game but plays very much like 2D
with sidestepping. While the Budokai and Tenkaichi games were good for your average Dragon Ball Z fan, fighting game fans wanted something more and with former Street Fighter II producer; Noritaku Funamizu, the hype began for this game to be the great DBZ fighter people have been waiting for. Well depending on your expectations on this game you could be set up for a disappointment.
OK, just to set the record straight, there is no story in this game what so ever. So if you was looking for a DBZ game with a story look again. This was strictly an arcade to PS2 port and can easily see that after you see the main screen.
The game is really fun but can be confusing at times, especially the controls because it can be weird pressing a face button for Jump instead of just up on the D-Pad, but you will soon enough get used to the controls. The attacks are based off using a light attack and a hard attack and there are a few dial-a-combos that are there but don't worry if you are dial-a-combo haters as a lot of it is based on juggles and a few string attacks. As the producer of Street Fighter II created this game, you can be sure that there are familiar features, namely the commands for special attacks like Goku's Kamehameha is QCF+L/H (The same commands as Ryu's Hadoken) and many characters have this command as a staple special, with some specials can be charged so that they hit more times and do more damage. You also have Ultimate moves that use up an ultimate gauge (you have 3 ultimate gauges in total). There are also Dragon Finishers, which are exclusive to only a few characters. Dragon Finishers are like little cinematic sequences that you can perform when your opponents health is below 10%.There are 18 characters in total with a starting 13 and you have to unlock 5. The characters are all very different with the exception of a few characters (this is usually the unlockable characters such as Vegeta to Majin Vegeta.) and the characters are all very balanced. This game doesn't exactly head towards fighting game experts but can be pleasing but it also doesn't head towards DBZ fanatic fans, so it's somewhere in the middle.
The are limited modes in Super DBZ, you have Original, Z survivor, Versus, Training, Dragon Summoning, Customize and options. Original is just like a classic arcade mode; Fight through multiple opponents (seven in this case) until you get to the end boss (Cell) and when you win battles you win EXP and BP(if you are using a character card; explained later). Z survivor is a bit more interesting, you have one life bar and you must fighter through 9 opponents with a red letter opponent every three matches (these red letter opponents are much harder than your regular opponents) and at the end of each match you have a roulette kind of wheel where you can recover your health, get either def or atk up, extra BP or exp, an increase in your ultimate gauge or collect a dragonball. After some matches you could get a stamp, if you get 5 stamps before the end of the 9th match you get a choice to fight a tenth opponent and if you win you get double your EXP and BP you won in Z Survivor. Versus is your classic 1 on 1 fighter(for against your friends). Training well do I have to explain it? Dragon Summoning is where, if you have 7 dragonballs, can make a wish from shenron from multiple wishes to choose from. Customize is where you can create a character card and (if you have enough EXP) start to build up your skill tree. The skill tree is where you can choose between different skills to have and they may expand to multiple choices or just one choice, so choose your skill tree wisely. Options is simply changing the gameplay options, sound options, save/load.
The Manga style graphics is a nice touch and a good change from the anime style DBZ games. It really captures the Manga style by adding comic style words to the harder attacks. There are destructible environments with many levels that are huge. There are also a few easter eggs in some of the levels, be sure to look at for them.
If you have the American version you get the English dub and if you have the PAL version you get the Japanese voices with subtitles. You decide what you like. The in game music is OK but definitely not great and can sometimes get annoying but for the most part it is good and you will hardly notice it.
Replay ability: (8/10)
If you have someone to play this game with you can get many hours out of this, but playing this alone you might get bored of it fast. Though maxing out your characters may take a while, depending how you play it.
In the end if you are a fan of fighting games in general and like a good balanced game I say buy, but if you are just looking for story and flash then you should at least rent this because I have heard enough people bash this game to it's deepest depths because it doesn't have enough content.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 08/09/06
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