Dragon Ball FighterZ coming from BlazBlue devs

Dragon Ball, the anime/manga which launched a thousand AOL screen names, is becoming a new fighting game made by Arc System Works. I’ve not been interested in the many Dragon Ball games Bandai Namco have made before, but their decision to draft Arc to make Dragon Ball FighterZ [official site] has me interested. Arc are the studio behind BlazBlue, Guilty Gear, Persona 4 Arena, and other respectable face-punchers, y’see. The 3v3 fighting game’s announcement trailer includes a great many explosions, including a handblast so powerful it zaps out into space. I’m certainly onboard with colours and lights and shouting. Here, have a look yourself:

Thanks to the weird cultural osmosis of the Internet, I know who half of those people are and which moves they’re doing even though I have never watched Dragon Ball. I also know that if I made an “Over 9000” joke I’d be duty-bound to jellify my own hands with a hammer.

Bandai Namco’s announcement explains what’s going on:

“Dragon Ball FighterZ gives fans of all skill levels the opportunity to feel like their favorite Dragon Ball character. Featuring 3 vs. 3 battle mechanics, new and seasoned players are sure to experience the epic scope of Dragon Ball as they select their three-character team to take into battle. The game also encourages players to train and master more than one fighter and style, delivering richer gameplay and motivation to take down the competition.”

Dragon Ball FighterZ is coming in “early 2018” via Steam. Bamco’s last Dragon Ball game sold well enough to pop into the top ten at launch, so I’d expect this to sell well over nine thousand copies.

Don’t worry, I have my own hammer.


  1. geldonyetich says:

    I sort of think that the MMORPG formula suits DBZ better. It more or less popularized the formula of grinding for more power in order to beat up bigger baddies.

    I think it is sort of interesting how the Dragonball series takes great pains to keep most of the characters around, even long after their use for a story arc is over. You want to know how Launch from the original series is getting along? Power of level of 18, but she’ll still occasionally show up in a cameo or even as a playable character.

  2. Syrion says:

    The games really look like the series now, huh?
    They have sure come a long way from those weird japanese SNES brawlers I played on my first emulator, over the crude Half-Life mod Earth’s Special Forces (with the really good-looking final version in development since.. 10 years or so?) and the lovely Bid for Power on Quake 3, to this. Looking good!
    Alas, my interest for Dragon Ball has left me after my teenage years. But, it’s kinda cool seeing how popular it still is after all these years.

    • Kaeoschassis says:

      To be honest that’s mostly this one. While the recent-ish dragonball games are very pretty, this is the one, by far, that most resembles “the anime, but a game”. That’s arcsys for you. When they switched from sprites to 3D they actually took the time to put back in the little pauses and gaps between frames that have no real place in 3D, just to keep it looking as close to their original style as possible. Even to this day I look at footage of the new Guilty Gear and find it hard to tell that these are models and not sprites. I have to say, I’m very excited to see how they tackle a dragonball game, it’s likely to be quite different from the, honestly, ridiculous number already out there (many of which are fun, but all of which are building on a similar base).

      Also P4A was awesome, so there’s that.

  3. Screampunk says:

    Given how much utter contempt ASW have shown for their western consumers & staff in recent years, I guess we the chances of an English dub are low.

    My grievances with ASW’s recent releases & attitudes aside, I did say the moment Guilty Gear Xrd came out that the technological breakthrough they’ve made with cel-shaded graphics is something to commend, would likely set the standard for future cel-shaded titles, and that a Dragon Ball title with this technology would be something to behold.
    Here’s hoping they don’t ruin the voices like they did with BlazBlue 4 or GG Revelator by taking away the choice and forcing us to put with the obnoxious shrieking & barking known as Japanese voice “acting”, and it could end up being a VERY impressive Dragon Ball game.

    • Screampunk says:

      That shameful feeling when I realize I’ve made two typos in the same comment…

      *I guess the chances
      *to put up with

  4. VeggyZ says:

    I just can’t get into the old 2D style of fighter anymore. It’s been a while since I’ve played one that didn’t just bring me back to the Mortal Kombat days, which are terribly glofied for how the games actually were. =-/

    I would insta-purchsae a Xenoverse 3 if they made it with ALL transformations and authenticity (as in, SSJ2 would make the hair of your custom avatar spike up instead of just turn yellow, and such changes, that people always ask for and figured they’d get in XV2)

    I don’t mean to rain on the parade of XV2 because I think it’s a hell of a lot of fun, enough that I can never go back to the 2d fighters… unfortunate that they’re still making them, because they’ll never capture the speed and feel of something like Dragon Ball. At least, no more than games like Budokai did. It’s still limited in movement too much for these types of fights… =(

    • VeggyZ says:

      Let me say that I hope I’m mistaken about my above comment. I just don’t see how it’s possible to properly transfer the feel of dragon ball universe to a 2 dimensional platform. Please prove me wrong, devs. I’ll buy your game if you do, but if not… well, you’re moving backwards in my book.