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Let's start with the good first. Character creation is pretty good and the diverse skill set is great. The game has good music and visuals and the voice actors do pretty good jobs. The game is easy to play and get used to. Plenty of fanservice, too. Alright now let's move onto to the bad.
The AI has only two settings. Cheap, and stupid. Your ally AI will circle around and occasionally attack with the weakest moves they have, break melee combos by shooting your target so they get knocked out of it, and sometimes just fly straight into a wall and do a solid NOTHING for a few seconds. Enemy AI is either spamming whatever skill that was programmed into their combo or heaven forbid you go against a Super Saiyan who will spam their ultimates. The AI also has a bad habit of randomly switching targets due to distance or trying to punch the large amount of thin air between you two.
The random number generator is very bad. You need luck to find certain skills, equipment, accessories, Dragon Balls and even mentor spawn locations. It can take you ten replays of a mission just to learn the Kamehameha or to continue your master's training. And it used to be worse.
Melee combat is horribly underwhelming. All you do is decide what heavy or light attack combinations you want to press and hope your opponent doesn't have the stamina to instantly get out of it. Or they do and they keep getting comboed to death since sometimes that just doesn't work.
Story mode goes "somewhat okay" to "an annoying chore" since enemies will start ignoring your attacks and spam their combobreaker whenever you try to melee them, or you'll get stuck fighting the same copy paste enemies over and over.
Oh and PvP and the servers. You've probably already heard about the bad servers and getting disconnected from matches. What you probably haven't heard is players lag-teleporting across the map or hits having no effect. Oh and trying to level up your ranking is impossible since losing to someone with lower BP will sap your rank which also causes more ragequits just to save it. If someone is losing they can use an item that fully restores their health and then run away until the timer runs out so they win. Terrible.
It's easy for other fans to squeeze fun out of this, but if you can't get over these glaring flaws you'll just go back to the older games.
Xenoverse was advertised as a fighter-RPG, where WE get to be the (highly customizable) hero and save history from collapsing.
Well, one and a half out of two is still better than nothing, I guess. There is a lot of fighting going on, but I would be hesitant to call it an outright RPG, such as we are used to with games such as Mass Effect. Rather, I would call it a fighter with RPG aspects – much like its Budokai predecessors.
The main issue I have with it is that we aren’t given the time to immerse ourselves in the slightly altered timelines, not do we get to see the various characters reaction to the Hero’s intrusion beyond “Where did they come from?” at the start and after the battle a brief “Where did they go?” The Hero basically pops in, fight the bad guy, and leaves. Understandable given the nature of the plot, but annoying because I want to actually feel like a part of this universe!
Aside from that, as a fan of Dragonball, I think it’s a great game and a good addition to the franchise and was the first game in a while that I’ve wanted to play because of its original concept.
The level design is simply gorgeous to look at, though the invisible walls get real annoying fast, and the customizable equipment is vast, accurate and makes for a hilarious walk through the multiplayer lobby as many people have mishmashed various styles of equipment to get the desired stats.
The meat of the game, however, lies in its fighting and on that front it does a pretty good job – beginners such as myself can get a hang of the controls quickly and more advanced players can make excellent use of the combos, special abilities and the Student system. The ability to target your opponent and switch between them is thankfully easy to get used to; no need to worry about randomly switching targets when you are about to die! The only other issue I have with the system is the flight controls, or rather, the ability to actually fly towards my target hovering a dozen feet above my head.
I could go on, but I have reached the word limit and so will simply end this review by saying that the game is enjoyable and with its price, but don’t expect an amazing story. Instead, kick back and enjoy the funny scenes in between bits of baddy-bashing!
Review from an offline player on Xbox360.
As a game : 6.5/10
As a Dragon ball game : 9/10
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