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Saturday, August 2, 2008

Dragonball Z Burst Limit Xbox 360 Impression


Dragonball Z Burst Limit, the first next-gen entry in the long and excellent line of DBZ fighters is just a few androids short of perfection. The Dragonball Z franchise was and still is a huge part of the anime landscape, but with no new episodes there is only so much you can do with a game series. Burst Limit takes the formula seen on the PS2 and PSP and brings it dang near perfection. The graphics, the animation is just breathtakingly gorgeous. I found myself watching the intro movie over and over wanting to see more of the series remade in this format. The in-game action is equally as fast and furious with a bit of the prettiness lost as expected when you get into gameplay. The gameplay itself feels very familiar and can turn into a button-mash due to the fast-paced nature of gameplay, but this is also reflective of the anime. This game is all about timing and, both for blocks and counterattacks as well as when to use your buddies. There were times when gameplay felt cheap, getting hit when I knew there was a block up, but again nothing new for this franchise of games. The gameplay styles, features, are what you expect with nothing new added in, just improvements on the old formulas. You’ve got your versus mode, edited down story mode, tutorial (handy for some of the lesser known, weaker characters) as well as Trial Survival, Time Attack and Battle Point modes. The online play is fun for a few hours but only the hard-core fans need apply.

So far what we’ve got is a great looking, sounding anime based game with a nice set of modes to play and good, not great, controls. Is it enough? For fans, yes and no, for non-fans, no. The latter first. Non-fans will not find much to like about Burst Limit as the franchise hit its peak a few years ago and with limit runs on TV now that casual curiosity is not there, you are either into DBZ or you are not at this point. Naruto for example has that buzz, pop-culture appeal that DBZ had just a few years ago. For fans of the series I say this game is a must since it’s the first next-gen DBZ title and I think the days of way too many Goku and gang adventures is behind us. This title serves up what we love about DBZ on consoles and I love it … with one gripe. The Cell Games, you’re telling me I only get to go up to the Cell Games??? Hey, I know I’m still playing the game and there is more to unlock but no Buu, no GT, no Movie characters, this is killing me. Budokai Tenkaichi 3 had me hook line and sinker when I could control Brolly among others. I know, I know this means more games to come, but if you’re going to give us chapters how about knocking down the price, or better yet hook up some more downloadable content.

All in all, a good game that fans of the series must have. The story is true nostalgia with high-level explanations of what’s going on, confusing for newbie’s, just right for long time fans. I recommend Burst Limit, especially with the newly re-released DVD sets. Rediscover what made Dragonball Z so magical. Fans of the series will also digg these trailers.

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