Beta Impressions: Dragon Ball Fighterz

The Dragon Ball Fighterz open beta is taking place this weekend, and there are a lot of reasons to be excited about it. Early footage has indicated that it promises to be a heady blend of Marvel vs Capcom 2’s team based combat and Guilty Gear Xrd’s anime style fighting, which is reason enough for anybody with even a passing interest in fighting games to try it out for themselves before it is released in full in a couple of weeks.

Having spent a few hours with the beta today, it’s easy to see why DBF is looking like being the biggest fighter of 2018. With Marvel vs Capcom Infinite receiving a distinctly “mixed” reaction due to its decidedly last-gen graphics and a move away from the 3 vs 3 format of its predecessors, Dragonball feels exactly what fans are itching for instead. The overall presentation is beautiful, with gorgeous graphics and a great avatar map where you access helpful tutorials, rankings and various online matches. I can’t wait to see what further areas and game types are available here at launch as there’s already plenty to keep you occupied at this beta stage. Gameplay wise, combos and special moves are surprisingly simple to pull off, and it’s amazingly easy to do all kids of cool looking stuff. Despite having a healthy number of system of mechanics to learn, I can’t imagine anybody having any difficulty picking the game up and feeling pretty good about themselves pretty quickly. It almost feels potentially too easy at the moment, but without training mode it’s not clear how much depth and variation will be uncovered when people get to play around with the system more freely. Online feels solid and stable, and all of the games I played were as quick, lag free and consistent as a fighting game has to be.

It’s hard to imagine how a game that looks and sounds this good, plays this well and is attached to such a popular and established IP can possibly fail to be huge. As long as the full game builds upon the beta with plenty of single player content, regular updates and enough depth to keep hardcore fans happy, there’s every reason to believe it will fulfil its promise of being one the biggest games of 2018, fighting or otherwise. Roll on January 26th.

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