Super Dragon Ball Z

  • Old-school arcade battles
  • Plenty of special moves, unlockables
  • Versus mode with upgraded characters
  • Lame single-player modes
  • Relatively tame special attacks
  • Predictable, repetitive opponents

If you have no idea which purple alien destroyed the planet Namek, and "Spopovitch" sounds like a type of Norwegian breakfast sausage, don't worry. Super Dragon Ball Z isn't really about Dragon Ball Z; it's about smashing that purple alien through brick walls.

Of course, fans will still be treated to a healthy dose of authentic DBZ flair. The environments are nicely detailed, replicating the look of the original manga surprisingly well, and DBZ creator Akira Toriyama personally designed the new, unlockable supervillain, Mecha Frieza. Another nice touch is the inclusion of Chi-Chi (wife and mother to several of the main characters) for the first time in a DBZ fighter.

Even so, the fighting is far less over-the-top than what's found in any of the previous DBZ installments, especially the button-mashing Budokai games. That's because there are some serious developers behind it: the creators of Street Fighter II. They've given us multi-layered destroyable arenas, a large arsenal of "ki" attacks (read: giant fireballs) and an abundance of kicks, punches, throws and combos. The controls are relatively simple and universal, so once you've mastered one character's special attacks, you've mastered all of them.

The new fighting system definitely has a Street Fighter feel to it, and the combination of flying, teleporting, powered-up Super Saiyan action and old-school game mechanics makes the first hour or two a blast. After that, however, things start falling flat.


More Info

Release date: Jul 18 2006 - PS2 (US)
Available Platforms: PS2
Genre: Fighting
Published by: Atari
Developed by: Namco Bandai, Crafts & Meister
Franchise: Dragon Ball
ESRB Rating:
Teen: Cartoon Violence

Associate Editor, Digital at PC Gamer

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  • JohnnyApplesperm - November 29, 2010 5:42 a.m.

    If you're reading this Tyler, "eh, its better than I thought".
  • jscriber100 - September 18, 2010 1:43 p.m.

    this is a poor dragonball z game.the budakai series were much better dragonball z games.
  • super2j - April 10, 2010 1:54 a.m.

    I can't believe no one commented on Tyler Wilds first review. Anyway, i remember this game. It was not that great, budokai series itched that spot much better.