Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2 Review
Step into the universe of Dragon Ball, and travel through time in Dragon Ball: Xenoverse 2, from game developer Dimps, and Bandai Namco Entertainment, which is based off the Dragon Ball Z television series. It is a combat RPG style game, with a touch of MMO, that allows you to travel through time to specific battles, and events in the Dragon Ball Z universe, as a custom-made character of your choosing. There is a large online element to the game, where you can put your wits, and cunning to the test in large arenas, hoping to emerge victorious against foes from around the globe. Battling for power and glory, trying to get the best upgrades, and perks for your character, helping them to become the ultimate fighting machine.
Combat is the core focus, and DB Xenoverse 2 achieves this well, with its multi-directional fighting, which throws you from one side of the map to the other, with such force and speed it can make it hard to keep up. This can make chaining together combos quite difficult, as you must try to maintain some composure. Why? Because even though some combos can be put together by mashing a single button repeatedly for 5 minutes, it takes some skill and patience with the game to excel in the battle arena. Combos are extremely important, as the higher your combo grows, the more Ki you earn. Ki is the main power source for your large attacks, and special abilities, which gives you the added advantage in battle by providing huge bursts of damage against your opponent. Annoyingly, the camera can make it difficult at times, as when it tries to adjust it can lead to you missing crucial attacks, and losing high combo counters. There is an auto-lock function that the developers put in, which helps you to maintain a clearer view of your enemy, but that doesn’t always help with the missed attacks.
There are different fighting layouts in the game that help with all ranges of combat. It gives you three different fighting styles to choose from while creating your character. There is one that focuses on close quarters combat for the true brawler, another that is designed for a mid-range approach with even amount of attributes across the board, or a distance focus that allows the player to hang back and deliver powerful blows to the enemy without getting too close.
Dimps have also given the gamer a lot of choice when it comes to character customisation in Xenoverse 2. There are 5 races to choose from, which are the Majins, Saiyans, Earthlings, Namekin, and the Frieza race. Once you have chosen your character’s race, you can then change all aspects, from their hair, to their shoes, all with different colour choices and outcomes. This is so, you can make your online character look like a true Saiyan, flying through the air wearing Goku’s orange Gi, or be as colourful and bright as a double rainbow soaring across the horizon.
The look of the whole game is quite magnificent, with its open, well devised landscapes, detailed 3D character design, and fast paced aerial combat. It looks and feels as if you were fighting in the anime series that so many have come to love over the years. DBX2’s story helps you re-experience the anime, going back and forward through time to ensuring events happen as they should. With Goku and the gang on your side, I felt a sense of nostalgia, being in the thick of battles that I had watched many years ago.
With the anticipation of waiting to see which opponent was next in line for an ass whooping, it told me that this game was designed for the true die-hard DBZ fan. However the campaign can drag on especially in the chat sequences with other characters, this made me spam the ‘A’ button to get to the next fight as quickly as possible. Next we have the online mode of the game, which lets you team up with other players to complete quests, or challenge them to duels, all in the pursuit of levelling up your character to become the ultimate warrior. Fighting online was entertaining, if not a little glitchy, but I found that it was more enjoyable to complete the campaign by yourself, than do online quests with a partner.
There are some minor flaws in the game that can be annoying in a small way (this may be different from person, to person), one being that aerial combat could be an issue for players with vertigo or migraine tendencies. This is because the game could make you feel dizzy, and slightly disoriented with the fast movement of the camera, which is constantly moving around, tracking your character, or locked on am enemy. These camera angles are what made keeping track of enemies so hard through sections of the game. Some of the character movements looked weird and boxy at points which was noticeable enough to point out but overall the graphics were pretty good.
Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2 was a blast to play, although it did have some minor flaws that were mildly annoying. Missing important attacks that jeopardised combos was frustrating but when you did land a big combo that feeling was pure satisfaction. I think the developers did well in providing a game for big fans of the series, and making the game playable for long periods of time without becoming too boring. With all the quests, striking scenery and character progression, you’ll always find something fun to see, or do, in the universe that is Dragon Ball Z.
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