“Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2” is the second installment in the Budokai series of fighting games based on the popular anime and manga series “Dragon Ball Z.” Developed by Dimps and published by Atari (later Bandai Namco Entertainment), the game was released for the PlayStation 2 in 2003. Building upon the success of the original “Dragon Ball Z: Budokai,” the sequel introduced new features and improvements to deliver an enhanced gaming experience for fans. Here’s a detailed overview of “Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2” for the PS2:
- Like its predecessor, “Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2” features a 3D fighting system with a 2D plane for combat. Players engage in fast-paced, one-on-one battles, selecting characters from the extensive Dragon Ball Z roster.
- The game retains the accessible control scheme that allows both casual and hardcore players to enjoy the experience.
- “Budokai 2” expands the character roster, including an even wider variety of characters from the Dragon Ball Z universe. This includes Saiyan warriors, powerful villains, and other iconic characters.
- Characters can transform during battles, showcasing signature forms such as Super Saiyan and Frieza’s various transformations.
- The Story Mode follows the main arcs of the Dragon Ball Z series, allowing players to experience key battles and events.
- The game introduces an interactive board game-style map where players move between locations, triggering battles and events as they progress through the story.
- The World Tournament mode returns, providing players with the opportunity to participate in various tournaments and prove their skills against AI-controlled opponents.
Graphics and Presentation:
- “Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2” maintains the cel-shaded graphics that capture the distinctive visual style of the anime and manga.
- The character designs, animations, and special effects contribute to the immersive Dragon Ball Z experience.
Cutscenes and Voice Acting:
- Animated cutscenes with voice acting help convey the narrative, featuring both English and Japanese voice tracks.
- The game stays true to the source material, replicating the intense and iconic moments from the Dragon Ball Z series.
Fusion System and Gameplay Enhancements:
- One notable addition is the Fusion System, allowing players to perform character fusions during battles. This includes iconic fusions like the fusion dance of Goku and Vegeta to create Gogeta or the Potara fusion of Goku and Vegeta to form Vegito.
Enhanced Gameplay Mechanics:
- “Budokai 2” introduces new gameplay mechanics, including the ability to “charge up” characters to increase their power level during battles.
- Players can execute powerful combination attacks and special moves, adding depth to the combat system.
Reception and Legacy:
- “Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2” received generally positive reviews for its expanded character roster, improved graphics, and the introduction of the Fusion System.
- The game was praised for its faithful representation of the Dragon Ball Z universe and its ability to appeal to both fans of the series and fighting game enthusiasts.
- The success of “Budokai 2” contributed to the ongoing popularity of the Budokai series, establishing it as a significant franchise in the Dragon Ball Z gaming legacy.
“Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2” for the PlayStation 2 successfully built upon the foundation laid by its predecessor, offering fans an enhanced Dragon Ball Z gaming experience. With its expanded character roster, Fusion System, and improved gameplay mechanics, the game remains a noteworthy title in the Budokai series and continues to be remembered as a classic Dragon Ball Z game for the PS2.