It’s PGW this week, and all the publishers and developers are showing up in Paris to show off their latest titles, both big and small. And in one particular case, all the weebs are really excited as one of the most perennially popular anime franchises showed up to blow the roof off the place, not literally of course. That game is of course Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot. Bandai Namco’s latest attempt to truly capture the beloved story of Akira Toriyama on a new platform.
Yesterday Bandai Namco showed off Majin Vegeta as another boss battle earlier in this arc. Compared with the level 63 massively powerful Saiyan prince, Super Buu is an even more powerful foe. And since this is a take on the action RPG genre for DBZ, that means Buu’s bigger number represents itself as a higher level. Super Buu is a level 71 enemy with a very big number. It’s a great way to handle the asinine power levels of the early DBZ arcs. As time wears on in the story the thousands of health and damage values in the early stories will give way to the hundreds of thousands of the later sagas. All in all, combat has been refined to fit into the genre conventions, which is great and should make for a better game. There’s plenty of other characters included, all of the main ones in DBZ as a matter of fact, like Piccolo. And yes, we will definitely get to see Vegeto in action.
One change that some fans of these various games based on the legendary anime, particularly the older Budokai titles, there’s no divergent story paths here. In the 25 years since the story first appeared, there have been plenty of video games that attempted to lay down divergent story paths, like Super Saiyan Raditz and Frieza actually gaining immortality on Namek. Sadly for those of us who enjoy these kind of alternate takes, this game will be having none of such trivial nonsense.
As players fight their way through the various battles of the iconic series, from the earliest Saiyan saga all the way through to the cataclysmic Buu fights, challenges are going to get exponentially tougher. Damage values go way up by the time we’re taking control of Gotenks to take on Buu later in the series. As a result, you will have to plan your character and their stat development carefully.
Also, the game looks really beautiful, and is a stunningly accurate feel of the original anime art style that so many kids grew up emulating. Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot will take us through all the story beats of DBZ, and fans will definitely get to see some of the more iconic moments of their favorite characters realized in this great new look.
Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot will land onto the battlefield on January 17, 2020.