Gameplay Impressions: Dragon Ball Z Battle of Z Thrills, Then Spills

By Ryan Winslett 2013-12-18 06:44:48 discussion comments
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It seems like the PlayStation Vita is becoming the go-to platform for four-player 3D brawlers, with games like Soul Sacrifice and Ragnarok Odyssey already making waves on the console and Toukiden: The Age of Demons being one of the most highly anticipated portable games of 2014. Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z is the latest offering in this particular category, but can the series' trademark uuber-fast action and free movement translate into a fun multiplayer experience?

If you would have asked me this question following my first couple of missions within the game's meaty demo, which went live on the PlayStation Network yesterday afternoon, I would have told you that, yes, it absolutely delivers. Actually, given how excited I was by my initial experience with the game, I would have been more likely to shout my reply from the kitchen sink, where I was busily dying my hair blonde in order to pretend I was turning Super Saiyan.

Like many children of the 90's, I grew up on DBZ, excitedly tuning in every afternoon to see the latest adventures of Goku and company. Shortly after booting up War of Z on my Vita, my initial reaction was “Ermergerd, it feels like I'm playing the TV show!”

The game takes place in the open world with the Square and X buttons used to fly (ascend and descend respectively). That leaves only two main face buttons for the combat, with triangle being mashed repetitively to pull of combos and circle being used to shoot ki blasts.

As story events from the show unfold through fully-voiced, pop-up dialogue boxes, players are left to explore the massive environments in order to hunt down and fight enemies. You can also guard, which can be tapped in tangent with any of the face buttons in order to pull off one of your character's special moves. The touchscreen is also used for combat, with two regions dedicated to other special moves and a third region allowing you to easily target a teammate.
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