Name: DragonBall Z Budokai Tenkaichi 2
Platform: Nintendo Wii, Playstation 2.
The series first made it's appearance on the Playstation 2 and was ported to the GameCube later originally under the name DragonBall Z Budokai. The first three Budokai games were fun, each one adding more features, characters and a longer story to the mix. They were however criticized by game critics for being nothing more than button mashers (which was true after looking back on it). After the third Budokai game was released, Atari was obviously aiming at making a DragonBall game that put this theory to rest and put players a step closer to the action, placing them in 3D enviroments, something that hadn't been done in a DragonBall Z game before. That game is known as DragonBall Z: Budokai Tenkaichi. Although the idea was a good one, the transition from the original controls to the new ones was very awkward. Regardless, Atari made a sequel which released on the PS2 and later, the Wii. So could the Wii version support a control scheme that not only puts the "button mashing" thing to rest, but actually works? Read on to find out. (yes)
The DragonBall Z games are not known for telling the story of the animated series well, and in no way is this game an exception. Although this game features all the Saga's from the Saiyan Saga to the GT Saga, if you are not a die hard fan of the story you will find it very hard to follow. Other than that, the story does last a while and does get increasingly difficult as you progress through the story.
Anyone who has played the original DragonBall Z Budokai games for the PS2 and GameCube will know that these games involve a LOT of button mashing. This also made it hard to memorize certain attacks, because so many wacky button combinations were required in order to perform some. While the Wii's controls may not be perfect, they are a huge jump forward. Standard physical attacks are performed by pressing the A button and rising and descending during battle is done by holding the C button and tilting the nunchuck upwards or downwards. This game takes full advantage of the motion controls, and for a game released so early in the Wii's life, it did very well. It does take a while to get used to as with any Wii game, but it doesn't disappoint. For example, if you were playing as Goku and wanted to unleash say a Kamehameha wave, what you would need to do is hold down the Z and B button, pull the Wii remote and nunchuck back and quickly push it forward as if you were actually doing one yourself. Sounds gimmicky, but it's actually quite fun. Some energy based moves only require you to point the Wii remote in a certain direction or shake the controller, but this game is one of those games better suited for the Wii controls than standard controls. If you disagree, you can also use a Classic Controller or GameCube Controller as well.
Unlike the controls, the graphics are only good to an extent. Character models look fine and all, but some special effects don't look as good as they could be. I know this because I've actually played DragonBall Z Budokai Tenkaichi 3 recently on the PS2 and it looks LOADS better than this. It would have also been good if this game featured support for the Wii Component cables, but it won't lose major points for that seeing as how it's more of an extra to people with HDTVs.
This is another part of the game that does great justice for it. Dragon Universe is the story mode, where you will play through all the Saga's of the DragonBall Z series, a Duel mode where you can fight against a buddy or the computer in a simple match, World Tournament where you can compete in a tournament to earn some cash to buy things. You can use the money you earn to buy new Z items, which can be equipped to your fighter to enhance their Attack power and Health etc. There is also an option that allows you to play the game with the original Japanese narration. That probably won't help you much unless you can talk Japanese, but if you hate the English voice acting then why not? There is also Dragon Challenge, where you pick a character and must climb a tower by defeating opponents.
Fans of the series won't be disappointed by the audio in this game. All the classic sound effects from the DragonBall series is in full form in this title. Not just sound effects either, the whole soundtrack will have fans delighted with familiar tunes and voice acting.
This game is proof that some games are actually better suited for Wii controls than standard controls. Some of you may disagree with this because you found it difficult with them, but compared to the PS2 controllers I found it much easier to pick up and learn. If your a fan of DragonBall Z, do give this game a look if you haven't already.
Story: 2/5 -It's all here, but only die hard fans will understand it through this game.
Gameplay: 4/5 -Surprisingly, the Wii controls do make the game much more fun. You can also use the Classic Controller.
Graphics: 3/5 -They look alright, but could be improved greatly.
Game Modes: 5/5 -Plenty of game modes to keep you coming back for more.
Sound: 4/5 -DragonBall Z fans rejoice, all your favourite sound effects are here.