Author: Robert Mullarkey
Computing graduate who works in an office. Still finds enough time to watch a lot of anime and play a lot of video games
Dragon Ball FighterZ Open Beta Impressions
With the imminent release of Dragon Ball FighterZ and with the public open beta taking place; we here at UK-Anime thought this would be a good opportunity to do a preview article for the game and our thoughts on this, the beta release.
We were given access to the beta on Saturday 13th January 2018; the pre-order release day, thanks to Bandai Namco. This preview article is my personal opinion and experience regarding the beta and game itself based on the Playstation 4 Version. It is worth noting that I also have the game pre-ordered. This article will also act as a partial explanation of the game mechanics and how easy I found it to learn them, and also how well the beta ran. We will cover the game’s full release later on.
Dragonball FighterZ – Fighting Mechanics
Dragonball FighterZ is a 3 vs 3 fighting game that plays like a mash up between Marvel vs Capcom 3 and Persona 4 Arena. The game itself has gone for a simplistic fighting style with two sets of auto combos. One is performed with square being the light attack version and the other is a medium attack version using triangle. After a bit of experimentation I found you can start an auto combo from the light version and branch into the medium until a certain point but cannot start drop from the medium version into the light version of auto combos. The light version of the auto combo contains a launcher and follow up air combo whilst the medium auto combo end with a special move that will use up 1 gauge of the special meter.
Many of the fighting moves that are a part of Dragon Ball Z's signature style are present and accounted for in Dragonball FighterZ. These include: High speed dashes that are performed using the R2 button, Vanishing attacks that use one gauge of the special meter but teleport you instantly behind your opponent and of course, Goku’s Kamehameha! Even the show’s signature powering up staple move is in the game and is performed by holding light attack and the ki blast button. As well as this powering up move, launches that are performed by pressing down and heavy attack (circle) which can be used on the ground and in the air as well to extend combos.
While the auto combos are there for people first getting their feet wet. The real challenge is mixing in these light and medium attacks with launches, jump cancels and branching into special moves. The special moves in the game are divided into two types. One that uses one special gauge and one that uses three. These are done by doing either a quarter circle forward or back with the correct buttons. The buttons in question are two attack buttons. Light and Medium seems to work best as pressing medium and heavy runs the risk of using a vanishing attack by accident. Also if on a controller the game allows either R1 or R2 to fit act in place of these two button presses. Along with this game makes use of assist attacks by tapping either L1 or L2 to use a specific character or holding one of these buttons to switch character completely. The team battle system adds a layer or depth and strategy to matches as you can recover back some health when a character is not being used. Allowing the fight to last longer.
This may seem like a lot of mechanics to learn in order to play but they actually gel really well together. The beta itself had a tutorial section that teaches players how to use these mechanics. It's a great introduction to the game that everyone should make use of when they first start. Once getting grips with the game through here. I tried out various characters in casual matches. The characters on offer all have the same inputs for their moves but the moves themselves are different. This is a great approach to make the game simpler and easier to pick up for those not very familiar with fighting games or for those who find it hard to learn new characters and moves. All a player needs to do is understand the general mechanics of the game and they can play as anyone. From there they just need to find out what characters they like.
From my time with the beta I settled on a team of Goku, Vegeta and Beerus as their moves fit more with my style of playing fighting games. Other characters I did find interesting were Krillin for his Senzu bean special and Nappa for having a move that plants saibamen that grow and cling onto opponents.
All of the characters presented in the beta give a good indication of what to expect from the full release. A very fun roster that represents Dragon Ball Z's fun style of action.
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