There’s one of two ways a video game can go. Realism, with photo-realistic graphics and grounded stories (At least a little grounded) or wacky with cartoony visuals and truly over the top gameplay. It’s no secret that I prefer the wack-a-doodle games.
…So obviously when we come to a fighting game something like Tekken (Which is definitely wacky in its own right) while I enjoy it will always come second to Street Fighter or even Super Smash Bros, which lets face it isn’t even a real fighting game! I just love some over the top lunacy! So how best to combine that madness I love with some actual tight gameplay? Whack some Dragonball on top of a Street Fighter base! Now we’re talking!
I’m not here to review FighterZ again, I did that a year ago if you’re curious! I’m just here to talk about why this game is still both a metric ton of fun and a damn tight and competitive fighting game.
Without getting bogged down in the technicals and all that jazz it’s definitely an easy pick up and play kind of game. All the super attacks and Ultimates are easy to pull off and have the same simple button combination so picking up a new character is nice and easy. Picking your main team of three however, that’s where the fun lies. Each character has different tricks and moves that alter their gameplay significantly, for example someone like Goku is a good middle man with a good balance of speed and power but most of his attacks are longer range, while the green Goliath that is piccolo is stronger physically but has a shorter range and his supers are weaker. With the 3v3 combat it all comes down to tactics and choosing the team that’s best for you. Sure there are tier lists but just because a character is meant to be good doesn’t mean they’re good for you. If you’re looking for a good example you’ve got my own main team. Yamcha, Trunks and the green God that is Piccolo. Is that the a-team of characters? Not really. Like I’ve said though it suits my play style down to the ground with speed, power and range all covered depending on the situation. Plus I get 2 of my favourite characters in the series (Trunks & Piccolo) on my squad!
What I talked about before is coming back now with a vengeance. The god damn art style. Everything in FighterZ looks incredible with the animations and colour schemes lifted near perfectly from the anime but dialled up to 11! Of course it looks miles better than the actual series ever did but it’s still got the heart in the… Art that made Dragonball so special to so many of us. With the super and ultimate moves in particular looking gorgeous and giving you an amazing sense of satisfaction when you get to watch them land in full, particularly when you smash out certain characters tricks that last a long enough time to just about be annoying for your opponent, looking at you Gotenks… Super Buu volleyball my ass…
If you’re looking for a fighting game that gives you something pretty to look at and scratches that competitive itch you haven’t told your doctor about yet, then you can’t go wrong with a little bit of FighterZ in your life. Of course if you really want something competitive then Tekken and Street Fighter are still the big boys in that world, but only because of the pedigree they have being long running series and hell even house hold names. FighterZ is the baby of the group but is a baby that’s already walking, talking and writing musicals based on kicking ass. The best example of have of FighterZ being a game for the people is that my friend and fellow Respawning writer Alexx, has a well documented dislike of the fighting game genre, sure he’s given a few a try but he hasn’t found one yet that works for him, but even he seems keen in the idea of throwing down in this epic love song to the Dragonball universe… Even if It did take quite a lot of prompting from me…
You like fighting games but hate Dragonball? Get FighterZ. You like Dragonball but can’t stand fighting games? Get FighterZ. Basically if you don’t already have this game on your shelf? Get it.