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Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 2

Atari’s Got Ballz

Or, Dragon Ball Z, rather. Better yet, two of 'em! Ok, we'll stop there.
Author: Kyle Sutton
Published: April 24, 2006
The Dragon Ball Z series may have entered the console market as just your standard brawler tailored to fit the anime series' distinguished look and universe, but its made quite a bit of headway over the years. The first Tenkaichi game took the fighting into a free-roaming realm, while Sagas introduced a full-on adventure feel, though arguably not the most enjoyable one. In a word, Atari and the handful of developers who've juggled the license thus far haven't been afraid to think outside the genre, and it's only going to pick up from here.

Don't believe us? Hey, you can ask Atari yourself, as they're already well on their way to bringing a pair of new DBZ games to the PlayStation 2 (one of them even venturing onto Nintendo's Revolution) in 2006.

The first is Dragon Ball Z Budokai: Tenkaichi 2, the spiritual successor to 2005's top-selling DBZ game, which is taking what worked and piling it high with new features. A series-spanning story mode will once again be the core of the gameplay, but is only one of nine different modes, including heated single and multiplayer battles. The gravity-defying, acrobat-worthy fighting is now enhanced with over 100 playable characters and 15 lush 3D destructible environments to duke it out in.

"Newcomers to DBZ will enjoy the colossal selection of characters, authentic recreation of the Dragon Ball story, dazzling enhancements and intense fighting combos of Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 2," promises Emily Anadu, Product Manager, Atari, Inc. "It represents an accessible and faithful way for a new fan to experience DBZ in its entirety."

Then comes a slightly unique take on the series: Super DBZ. Classified as a "highly intense DBZ fighting experience," the game offers up a whole new combat system, with more intricacies than we've seen before. Well over a dozen characters (actually, it's either 13 or 18, but Atari has some press release/fact sheet discrepancies going on) will have a host of uberfast combination moves at their disposal, with environmental interaction even working to your advantage. And if it's any indication of what's in store, some dignified members of the development team also happen to be the creators of the Street Fighter II arcade game. Yeah, we were totally like "whoaaa" too.

"This year's DBZ line-up offers more gameplay variety than ever before," continues Anadu, Product Manager, Atari, Inc. "Super DBZ provides a more hard-core 3D fighting experience to reflect the maturing gaming desires of our fan base and simultaneously remains true to the DBZ experience -- that of being the best anime and cartoon-based series out there."

We know you're all cheering heartily already, and here's the release date dirt. Super DBZ will be the first out of the gate in July, with Budokai: Tenkaichi 2 blasting retail three months later, in October. We'll be sure to go Sayan-crazy this E3 at the Atari booth, and assuming we don't get booted out for our rambunctious attempts of mid-air combat, we'll be back with our impressions!