Review by WingedRegent

Reviewed: 12/11/06

Truly, the best DBZ game of all.

Nearly a year removed from the release of Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi, Spike and Bandai-Namco hit us with the sequel of this great series. Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 2 is a wonderful DBZ game that stays true to the DBZ series and the previous game, but a few twists were added to keep the experience feeling new.

Graphics: 8/10

The graphics for this game are fantastic, making a slight upgrade from the previous game's graphics. Some of the Ki auras are much more refined and look much nicer than in the previous game. The Ki attacks also look much nicer, and some even looks a bit brighter than before.

Sound: 10/10

The sound has received a complete overhaul from the last game. Now, the game uses original music made exclusively for this game, instead of the same old Budokai music. Also, the sound is much more consistent with the impact of the attack you landed, and the sound doesn't die out during certain attacks anymore.

The sound effects in the game are the same ones that you would hear from the anime, with each blast fitted with its sound. The sound is pretty much perfect for this game.

Controls: 8/10

The controls are a bit different from the last game. Now, the R3 button is used in conjunction with the directional pad to initiate a transformation. Another difference is that you will not use the X button for much of the fighting anymore. The buttons that will do majority of the close combat fighting are the Square and Triangle buttons.

Gameplay: 9/10

This is the most improved part of the game. There are now 129 characters, with forms included, each now being different from each other. Each character is now unique from each other. Even if the character contains a generic move, like Full Power Energy Ball Volley, or the new Delta Combination, each character personalizes it to be their own move. The hand-to-hand is also made unique by each character's stances and attack patterns. This makes it so that you will not feel like you a playing the same character.

The earring system has improved. Now, each stat increasing blue earring can now be leveled up with Exp. gained in certain game modes. Also, the Zeni system is back, meaning that you must buy earrings in this game. The earrings are apart of the level up process in this game, as every added point in each stat is a level up for that character, leading to a Max level of 160.

The story mode of the game in called Dragon Adventure mode. In this game, you get to select a saga and a game level. Once that is done, you begin the game. This mode will be familiar to those who have played Budokai 3, in which you flew around Earth, going to each objective. It is the same in this game, except for a few things. First of all, all of the areas in which you can enter will be marked with a yellow dot on your map. Also, when you enter any area that is marked yellow on the map, you can look around the area and talk to whoever is there. Another change from the Budokai 3 system is that there are now cutscenes in this game, making the story easier to comprehend for someone who hasn't seen Dragon Ball Z. A huge edition to this mode is the fact that the story branches to almost every saga or movie in the DB Universe. It starts at the Saiyan Saga, and ends at the Shadow Dragons Saga in Dragon Ball GT.

The World Tournament Mode has improved by a decent amount. This mode now has three types of tournaments; the traditional World Tournament, the Cell Games, which was just the highest tournament setting in the previous Budokai games, and the World Martial Arts Big Tournament, which is the tournament featured in DBZ Movie 9: Bojack Unbound. Also, each tournament has four difficulty settings: Novice, Adept, Advanced, and Master.

The Ultimate Battle Z mode is an upgrade of the Ultimate Battle mode of the previous game. Instead of fighting all of the characters in one road, you get to choose a road that you want to clear. Each road has a distinct theme, such as all of Goku's rivals and fighting the Ginyu Force. Your custom earring set-ups now work in this mode. This mode is also a good source of experience.

The Data center is where you can input passwords from the characters you use in Budokai 3 and Tenkaichi 1. It registers around ten characters and saves each one in a separate slot in the Warrior Catalog. Also, as an added bonus for those who have played the first Tenkaichi, you may use the Sparking Fusion option to download data from Tenkaichi 1 and gain 100,000 Zeni.

The Dueling mode is where you fight against the computer opponent of your choice. It has the Battle Settings, where you can set if both players can use transformation, the difficulty, and even who referees the fight.

Overall: 9/10

Overall, this game is a must have for any DBZ fan or even the casual gamer who wants to get into DBZ.

Buy, Rent, or Avoid: Buy if you are a DBZ fan or someone who is interested in DBZ; Rent or Avoid otherwise.

An overall great game, I am hoping to see more of this type of game from Spike, Atari, and Bandai-Namco in the future.

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

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