When you think about anime with crossover appeal, Dragon Ball Z earns a spot right at the top of the list. This is one of those Japanese imports that Americans have glommed onto like a Godzilla-powered Toyota that dispenses sushi whenever you drive past a Sony manufacturing plant. The same fans who love the show so dearly have made the Dragon Ball Z game series into a huge success as well, and this summer, players will be able to step into the arena one more time for Dragon Ball Z: Burst Limit.
Burst Limit is a true service to the fans, with the creators of the original Dragon Ball Z: Budakai coming back for another crack at things. The game looks incredible, with each character rendered in loving detail and an overall visual style that will likely lead players to believe they have jumped right into an episode of the show. The demo we saw featured silky-smooth frame rates and not a hint of slowdown, meaning that the only way you'll get a chance to breathe during the fight is if you hit pause and then put down the controller. Furthermore, there is no separate engine handling cut scenes, and all the graphical elements are rendered by the in-game engine. Basically, what you see in the screenshots is what you get, and what you get looks mighty nice.
The main attraction for Burst Limit will be the versus mode, and online play will obviously be included. The team is working on implementing regional and worldwide battles, so you can play with friends all across the globe. Think you're better than those so-called "superfans" over in Japan? Well then, it's time to put up or shut up, my friend.
In addition, there will also be a single-player mode told through the Z Chronicles. This mode will mostly follow the story arc of the series so as to not enrage fanboys, but the developers have hinted that there will be some chances to branch off into alternate realities and indulge some of those "what-ifs" that may be tugging at the back of your mind. Playing through the single-player campaign is actually critical to gain the upper hand in battle, as winning these matches unlocks "drama set pieces" that allow you certain battle assists. These helpful items range from improved attack and defense to regaining lost health, and they're always useful for turning the tide just when things seem bleak.
One thing that's for certain is that Burst Limit is going to be a much-welcomed entry for the legions of Dragon Ball Z fans. The team at Atari is going over every painstaking detail to make sure this will be a game fans want to have in their collection. While it would be easy to simply cash in on a license, that's not the case here, as even the early builds present a game that is beautiful, well-rounded and fun.
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