Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z – Review
Follow Genre: Fighting//Brawling
Developer: Artdink
Publisher: Namco Bandai
Platform: PS3, 360, Vita

Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z – Review

Site Score
Good: Hours of fighting action, Great concept
Bad: Camera angles, Lacks important tutorials, No split-screen in a fighting game
User Score
(2 votes)
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Rating: 8.5/10 (2 votes cast)

Dragon Ball Z, a franchise that is still releasing its yearly dose of games and even movies, provides us with a new game again, this early in 2014. Fans of the genre are of course psyched with every new release but this raises the question of what new these games can offer to the franchise. Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z, might be a fun answer to this question.



Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z, runs us through all the known story arcs of the anime series, but without that many details. While we get to know all the famous characters and events, we sadly never get any background information. This is only regrettable for those who never watched the series or have been following the DBZ games since the start.

The game relies heavily on what you already know of Dragon Ball Z and this makes it a little less accessible for everyone. Nonetheless, even with the lack of details, the game and its characters still come across as fairly appealing and this might be the first step for you to submerge in the DBZ universe.


Graphically Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z looks no less than amazing. The developers did their best to use the current, perhaps dated, generation of consoles to its maximum potential.

Cell shading is the key when it comes to the characters and this creates a close connection to the original manga and anime series, making it that much more authentic.

The environments are fairly detailed when it comes to textures and coloring, or even several details that are also implemented in the series.

Sadly all these good features also come with a few minor flaws. When breaking items in your surroundings, these will break as if you’re watching a cheap B movie. Also the fact your limbs or body go through walls or items, is something that tends to happen a lot.



When it comes to the overall sound experience of the game, Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z, offers us the chance to enjoy the voices of (most) of the original voice actors of the anime series, be it the English ones or the Japanese ones. Again in some ways this will contribute to the feeling of you being able to experience the original epic battles for yourself.

Music wise, the game presents us with a decent set of tunes but most of the time you will be too busy ‘kicking ass and shooting ka-me-ha-me-haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa…..s’ for you to actually pay that much attention to the music.


Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z is your fairly typical brawler/fighting game that focuses a lot on multiplayer. This is where one flaw immediately pops up, seeing the game does not support local multiplayer options. This means you’ll only be able to play with your friends online.

Battles in Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z are never the typical ‘one on one formulae’ as in most other fighting games, but are will be four on ‘less or more’ most of the time. This means you’ll be able to pick a team in which the character have different roles, like attacking or support.
Attacking types are better when it comes to their unique skills, seeing they will be able to do a lot of damage with one attack, whilst supporting types are needed to heal allies to keep them in the fight for longer periods of time.


The game makes use of a fairly simple control scheme, which is easy to use, yet hard to master. You will only have a few buttons that serve attacking purposes, be it melee or ki attacks and the rest of them concerns flying (ascend, descend) or blocking and locking on (Friends, enemies). Combinations are also possible, but most of these will remain fairly simple.
Even though the control scheme is simple, Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z lacks a decent amount of tutorial levels in order for you to get used to more than the simple basics.

A brawler like this is not without its flaws and these are pretty much all over the place, be it subtle ones. The overall locking system does not always do what it is supposed to do, even locking on does not always mean you’ll be hitting in the right direction. Combine this with the awful camera angles and you’ll be fighting frustration more than your enemies. Having a decent camera view is a key point for a game like this, to keep an overview.

During the course of the single player mode you’ll have to complete certain key battles from the original series. These are pretty straight forward, and it will simply be kill the enemies in the pre described set amount of time. The fun part however is that the game stays true to its original storyline, characters that did not take part in certain battles during the series, are not eligible for selection. Also the fact that you’ll be able to play the battles from the good side as well as the evil side, makes the game that much more appealing.

Completing missions will earn you rewards like cards which in turn can be used to ‘equip’ on your character to give it extra bonuses. This is a fun feature and will provide a decent amount of options when it comes to overall character customization.


As mentioned earlier, the game relies heavily on multiplayer modes and thus you’ll have the option of battling it out with your friends or do a set of co-op missions for you to work together as a team. Again keeping in mind that a balanced team seems to work better than purely taking offensive characters, dividing roles is a fun task. Sadly the lack of a split-screen mode is a serious flaw in an otherwise fun multiplayer game.


Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z is a fun brawling game that will offer you hours of fighting action, be it on your own or online with friends. Sadly the fact that the game has a serious set of flaws as well as the lack of a split-screen mode, pretty much spoil a decent amount of the fun. Overall the game is one of those cases that the concept is great but the execution tends to be mediocre in several important areas.

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Rating: 8.5/10 (2 votes cast)
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Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z - Review, 8.5 out of 10 based on 2 ratings

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