DRAGON BALL Z: KAKAROT
|Release date||January 17, 2019|
|Developer||CyberConnect2, Bandai Namco Games|
|Publisher||Bandai Namco Entertainment|
|Platform||PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows|
The Dragon Ball franchise in Russia and CIS countries is not the most popular representative of manga and anime, but quite recognizable. At least thanks to the famous meme and art of torijama, which is difficult to confuse with something other than Toriama art. There’s a better chance of mixing Dragon Ball art with Dragon zuest than any other work. In recent years, the recognition of the franchise has increased, not least thanks to games from Bandai Namco. There were large-scale but specific Dragon Ball: Xenoverse and Dragon Ball: Xenoverse 2, as well as Dragon Ball: Fighter (about it I wrote about). And at the beginning of the new year Bandai Namco released a new game in the franchise – Dragon Ball: Kakarot.
Manga, TV series, OVA, haste and other around the Sea franchise, but the main ones to explore are, it seems to me, Dragon Ball, dragon ball and Dragon Ball Super and Dragon Ball Super: Broly. The action of the current game retells all the main arches of Dragon Ball, it seems, the most famous part of the universe. I was surprised to learn that many people started their acquaintance with the franchise with this anime, and not from the beginning, with the usual Dragon Ball. But I’m distracted. So, the game retells the whole Dragon Ball, bypassing fillers – fillers are third-party quests, which the player will perform in the course of the case.
Structurally in front of an Action/RPG player with a partially open world. The fact that although the game covers literally all the famous locations from the DB, about a full-fledged seamless open world of speech is not – all the places are a medium-sized zone, separated by download screens. And, frankly, given that the game technically looks quite simple, and the creation of a single map with a smaller scale is quite possible, such a limitation is perplexing, but not more.
|It’s worth explaining the subtitle. Kakarot is the Saiyan name of the main character of the Son Goku franchise. Here the same situation as with Superman – the planet boom-boom, the hero baby in a capsule lands on Earth and he is given the name Son Goku, and then years later he learns the name given to him by his parents. But contrary to the subtitle, we will play not only for Goku, but also for other heroes such as Gohan, Vedita, etc.|
At the head of the battle and pumping – two forces, pulling all the works in the franchise. And, frankly, I was very excited when I realized what type of pumping we are offered. The first and important – all abilities are tied to arches and special training, only some are given just for reaching a certain level. Basically, you need to follow the characters to overcome the hardships and training to improve their strength. That is, in fact, we have a fairly linear pump, whose task is to give the player to repeat the path of the characters.
The combat system is actually simple – tied on two attack buttons in combination with evasion and the use of special techniques. At the same time, at its simplicity, it is quite diverse. Even the usual blow or block can be done as spectacularly and tactfully as possible, the main thing – to understand the situation.
Spectacular and fast – the main characteristics of the mechanics of fights. Rare fight drags on for a long time, only the fattest opponents have to spend time. But the other thing is interesting – numbers. Everyone knows that Dragon Ball has a fetish for measuring the level of power. Again, we recall the meme. So, the game is pretty well conveyed this feeling with the help of the figures of the scale of health and damage. If at the very beginning the player habitually sees the logical values of numbers, as in any Action/RPG, then by the middle of the game, and maybe even earlier, begins a form of madness. One blow removes 20,000,000 units of health, the Scale of Oz itself goes through a reasonable framework, at the time of combo attacks there are huge red and orange damage inscriptions, exceeding 200,000, and it very cool conveys the overall feeling of the battle of the titans. This is facilitated by the pieces of small rocks flying in all directions and the damage done to the landscape around.
Between the big story arches, the player is given access to all open locations, where you can raise the level and perform third-party quests. It becomes noticeable that the density of events and interesting tasks in the free game is inherently low. In addition to quests from activities, there is a collection of q-spheres for pumping, catching all sorts of animals for cooking, and fights with random opponents on the map. It is the part of the game that takes place in this conventionally open world that raises the most questions. If it were more compact or richer, it wouldn’t exist. This, I think, is a consequence of the ambitions of the developers – they created a huge world, covering a lot of known locations, but to fill them with the proper number of activities did not work.
The overall scale of the idea is felt in other related things. For example, in cooking food. You can cook game or individual dishes, and even whole dinners. They all affect the characteristics of the characters in one way or another. Or “Communities” – special boards (only 7), on which, connecting “Emblems of Souls” of different characters, you can receive bonuses. All these elements are well made and worked out, but there is no real need for them. On the other hand, the basic mechanics associated with combat work perfectly. Moreover, you can quite briskly run the game, ignoring everything but the plot.
|All the voiceacting, music, staging scenes came straight from the anime. But what is interesting, where the animators of the series had to save, making, for example, less close plans, developers to the full extent use the available to them – it does not always turn out well, but in most cases looks great.|
In the end, I’m rather satisfied. Bandai Namco is famous for the very uneven quality of games produced by anime franchises. For example, My Hero: One’s Justice was a very weak fighting game, as was Jump Force. At the same time, Dragon Ball Fighter is a good one, and other Action/RPG One Piece: World Seeker performed well. And it’s good that Dragon Ball: Kakarot fell into the category of well-tailored games. Yes, it’s not perfect, but it’s nice. I recommend to everyone who loves spectacular fights and anime. The game will immerse in the nostalgia of old fans of the franchise, and for beginners it is a pretty good way to learn about the main events of the series without watching 291 series. I’m even a little looking forward to the potential second part, where all these errors can be corrected and make a beautiful and well-considered game.