Dragon Ball Fighterz is a highly anticipated fighting game produced by Arc System Works. They have made titles like BlazeBlue and Guilty Gear so many believe the series is in the right hands. Does this game live up to the hype or does it drown in it? Well I believe it does. It has an original story to the dragon ball universe, fast and fluid gameplay. The biggest issue this game has is with the online features.
The story is completely new and original so you don’t have to play through the standard Saiyan, Planet Namek and Android sagas like previous Dragon Ball titles. You play as an earthling who is mysteriously linked to Goku. Throughout the story you will recruit other characters and control them. It not only helps you familiarize yourself with every character but it also makes for some great dialogue between most characters. Its interesting to see what character like Gotenks and Ginyu or Cell and Nappa have to say about each other. The story has three main arcs where you see the story from different perspectives.
The gameplay is impressive considering I have never played a Guilty Gear or BlazBlue title or any title that’s on Arc System Work’s resume. There is only 3 attack button scheme and one Ki button, so the gameplay is very simple starting off. There are only the basic quarter circle forward, quarter circle backward and down down motions for special moves. It even features some pretty decent autocombos that you can do just by mashing one of the attack buttons. They aren’t the most damaging combos so its worth to invest some time into learning more advanced options. The attacks are flashy and fast paced it sort of feels like you are in an actual Dragon Ball fight without all the filler. DBFZ also just looks amazing. They feature hand drawn sprite animations which makes the animation look even better. And with all of the action happening on screen I have never dealt with any frame rate dropping.
The only terrible point to this game is the online. Instead of a standard matchmaking system there are individual servers you have to join. Once you join a server you get access to all of the games feature. This wouldn’t be a big problem if you didn’t get disconnected randomly often. I have been trying to just go to practice to warm up before hopping into ranked then get disconnected before I can even practice. This is also a problem getting into online matches. I can be in the middle of a match online and just get disconnected from the server. Everytime I sit down for a good online session I deal with random disconnects at least 1 out of 5 games. I think this problem is why there isn’t a noticeable penalty for ragequitters because its hard to tell sometimes. I also have a hard time finding games most of the time. This might be because I only search for green bar connections and up but I commonly wait for five minutes before I get matched with someone. Online is a huge problem and a fighting game without good online isn’t going to last long. This game has had two beta periods. Its just frustrating being disconnected all the time is holding this game back from being amazing.
I know I ranted about the online for awhile, but this is a really good game. The story is original and surprisingly good which is appreciated for a Dragon Ball title, the gameplay is fast and hectic but not too crazy and it has a brilliant presentation. Once Bandai Namco and Arc System fixes the online its definitely going to be one of the better fighting games I have ever played.