Dragonball FighterZ was a lesson to the world on how an anime fighting game should be; I challenge you to find a game that has both rad as fuck gameplay AND the same heart of the series it’s based on – Go on, I’ll wait.
Can’t find anything else? Then you’re not looking hard enough, but I don’t blame you, particularly when it comes to anime – There are no more intense fans than those of anime; if you do anything to damage a classic anime series, you can be sure of swift and brutal punishments from the fanbase, see Dragonball: Evolution or the Netflix Death Note series. FighterZ walks the line of nostalgia trip and and awesome game so well and it goes to show that it’s not an impossible task to make an anime game so awesome that it hurts.
Now there’s a lot of fighting anime series out there, in fact they’re the only ones I really watch unless repeatedly prompted to by say… Oh I don’t know… Luke (“Watch Fullmetal Alchemist… Do it!!”) – Anywho, lets discuss some anime that could be made into something just like FighterZ, and be just as awesome! Obviously thinking immediately that the remaining series from the “big 3” would be a good call, but let’s face it; Naruto has its own magnum opus in the form of the Ultimate Ninja Storm series, and One Piece just has too many damn characters at this stage to make the game anywhere close to playable – Pretty sure Luffy alone has fought about 400 people now?! With that let’s just bin off two of the most successful series of all time and bask in a little obscurity!
Besides myself everyone’s favourite moody ginger is probably Ichigo, and I’d say with his fantastic swordplay and sick looking finishing moves that Bleach would be a prime candidate for the 2.5D fighter treatment. Most fights in Bleach are a 1v1 affair anyway, and every character comes with a ton of personality that could be easily reflected in their art, quotes and fighting style, just as they are in the actual series. There’s no doubt that if this happens I’ll be maining my favourite eyepatch wearing badass, that isn’t Big Boss, Kenpachi, and dominating with all his overpowered glory!!!
Let’s cast our minds back a little further to another fighting anime with a colourful cast and a predisposition towards 1 on 1 combat, Yu Yu Hakusho! With its character driven story and some iconic fight scenes I think we’re overdue for a return from Yusuke Urameshi and his team of wacky friends and fellow fighters. More than anything though it’d be fun to recreate some of those amazing fight scenes! In my case the first port of call would be a rehash of Urameshi Vs Jin The Wind Master in all its wise cracking and Irish accented glory!
Follow me on my journey though time again to the modern day and you’ll see an anime in DESPERATE need of a good game, My Hero Academia. There’s no shortage of available fighters to choose from and some of the coolest looking special moves I’ve seen outside of your mother’s bedroom. Besides that, MHA’s art style already lends itself to a 2.5D fighter with most episodes of the anime having a stunning depth of field to them even in just 2D. There’s not much I can imagine that’d make me smile more than watching All Might punching Bakugo into the fucking concrete with a United States of Smash!
How about we go totally off our bonce and petition for a god damn Sailor Moon fighting game? There has got to be a market for lonely weebs who want to watch their dreams come true as Sailors Mars and Jupiter beat ten shades of shit out of each other while Tuxedo Mask watches the entire time like a disapproving but oddly aroused teacher. I was going to end this article after that but then had another sudden brainwave… Or maybe it was a stroke. Whatever, I’ve always wanted a decent game based on one of the coolest looking series I’ve ever seen, JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, with its long run there has been no shortage of games based on the Joestars, but none of them really scratched the massive herpes itch that series left me with. Seeing the various and creative Stands battling in the 2.5D realm of the FighterZ engine however; hoo boy. You can’t possibly comprehend how tight my pants would become…
Anime games show no signs of slowing releases though it’s hard to see anything peak the success of Dragonball FighterZ, especially after we all recently witnessed the flashy but hollow Jump Force which was just a ton of spectacle and about as much substance as a you could fit in a thimble. There’s probably a ton more anime out there that you’d could mention that would make even more amazing fighting games, but since I’ve hit my word count and my brain is thinking more about lunch than writing, I think I’ll leave it here. If you have any ideas then drop us a comment and I’ll probably come back for a retrospective!