If you’re any fan of fighting games, Arc System Works will be a name that is familiar to you, and you probably have a deep appreciation for the games that they make. And if you’re a fan of the Dragon Ball series, you will know that they have not seen justice done to them when it comes to video game adaptations. So when Arc System Works gets their hands on Dragon Ball, a franchise screaming for a solid fighting game, you know it’s going to be BallZ..
Dragon Ball FighterZ is an absolutely incredible fighting game, that is entertaining for both low level and high players. How do I know? Because I suck at it, and love it to bits! And I am not even a big fighting games guy.
The first thing that stands out about Dragonball FighterZ is how beautiful the game looks. Everything moves at breakneck speeds and never stumbles for a second. Attacks look smooth and gloriously explosive, and the visual effects are dazzling. The presentation is top-notch, especially in the fights themselves. Arenas are beautifully designed, and when the game shifts between 2D and 3D during big combo moves, it just looks mind-blowing.
You start of in a hub area/lobby which allows you to access the various games modes. The tutorial does a great job of familiarizing you with the game’s mechanics and the characters. You can then jump into the story mode which is fairly mediocre, unless you’re really into the anime. The story mode mode might be the only aspect where the game falters, but that’s not much of a knock against a fighting game.
Since this is a 3 vs 3 fighting game, team composition and knowing when to tag in and out is a big part of the overall strategy, and the starting roster is fairly robust. Some of the characters might not feel a lot different in the beginning, but as you keep getting better at them, they do start standing out.
The fighting itself is action packed, and even graceful at moments. It has a great flow to it, which some other recent titles lack. I noticed this most during the recovery animations from taking damage or falling. The game’s emphasis on being able to comeback from taking a beating makes it a lot more welcoming to newcomers to fighting games. Mashing buttons flows into spectacular combos, while a more skilled player can pull of clever moves by studying attack patterns.
The arcade mode has a unique progression system, which grades you for every successful fight and sets the difficulty of the next fight accordingly. It’s challenging and a lot of fun. Winning matches also grants you points which you can spend on stickers and skins for your lobby characters. There’s a lootbox system at play here, but is fairly generous and I never felt the need to shell out extra money.
For whatever reason, I was unable to access the online, and will update the review post official release.
Dragon Ball FighterZ is now my go to fighting game, and I have played more of it than I ever expected to. It’s easy to jump into and fun to master. It’s also one of the best looking fighting games out there right now. If you had any reservations about a new Dragon Ball game, put them aside and play FighterZ, it’s great!