Dragon Ball Z: Ultimate Tenkaichi

  • Released on Oct 25, 2011
  • By Spike for PS3, Xbox 360

Dragon Ball Z: Ultimate Tenkaichi review
Bad, but however not the regular DBZ game.

The good:

If you asked me to pick between Raging Blast 2 and Ultimate Tenkaichi, I'd have to go with Raging Blast for many reasons. Ultimate Tenkaichi dawns in with a new fighting style, which at first was amazing. Though I did find myself confused with the new style, I thought it'd take me days to get use to, it only took me a good hour. Unlike the other Dragon Ball Z games, this one has the addition of a mode that allows you to play through an alternate Dragon Ball Z Universe with the use of a character you have created, that you can also use in the other game modes. All in all, Dragon Ball Z makes it's outside appearance to look like it may have been one of the greatest Dragon Ball Z games to date, however, it failed to answer the call in plenty of different ways.

The bad:

I think this is the biggest topic of the game that I want to get across right now; the combat system. Yes, I know I said it was amazing, but that was on the first day that I bought it, but soon after, I got bored of the fighting style because of all the Quick Time Events you have to pull off every five seconds, and sometimes to do the most unnecessary things. It's annoying how slipping away and toward your opponent means your going to be faced with a QTE. People say I'm wrong for criticizing the game for the amount of QTE's saying that Dragon Ball Z Budokai 3, also uses Quick Time Events. It does, but in Budokai 3, you aren't faced with one EVERY FIVE SECONDS. In Budokai 3, you're faced with QTE's on occasions, depends on if you're trying to activate a super attack, but in Ultimate Tenkaichi, all you need to do to trigger one is to finish a combo. The fact that the game is 50-50 chance really means it won't take much skill to dominate the opponent, because it's based on luck. Your opponent hits square, then you hit triangle, you are instantly subject to a 30-hit combo. If your health counter is red, and its simply impossible to recover from combos at this point, you might as well just crack open a soda, and finish it before the game resumes after the 10,000 damage 30-hit combo is pulled off.

Another thing that bothers me about the combat is the super attacks. The opponent activates a super attack or ultimate, you cannot move to get away from it. In fact, you are faced with 3 different options; Intercept, Evade, Guard. To intercept means you will begin a beam struggle, or in some cases up close hand to hand combat. To succeed you must be the one to push triangle the fastest. Evade of course mean to just point blank evade, which begins another mini game where you must push square at the right times to either evade or deflect the opponents attack. Last but not least, we have guard, which proves to be a hell of a lot useless than the other options. In this option, you guard yourself to prevent your opponents from damaging you too much, but even this will deal over 10,000 damage. In some cases, when your opponent begins a super or ultimate attack, some options will not be available, in which case Evade and Intercept are gone, and you're stuck with guard, or sometimes, NOTHING. So you'll just have to take the damage sometimes, especially when your health counter is red. Whatever happened to the free movement, like in Raging Blast 2, if you wanted to evade the attack you could do that, even if it resulted in missing by a mile. All I want is the freedom, not being forced to changer ranges via QTE...

The story telling in this game is really kind of boring. In story mode they go for the old Budokai 3 free flying, which is also seen in games like Buu's Fury if I remember correctly. It was also used in Tenkaichi 2's story mode. But however, in Ultimate Tenkaichi, you won't be flying around as long as it was back in the other games. Most of the times in this story, it's not really even necessary. I don't know if I dislike the Story Telling because it's the same recycled story used in every DBZ game, or because it was just kind of dull.

In this game, you have the addition of a mode that allows you to play through an alternate Universe with your created character as the hero. Like story mode, this one uses the free flight in between points of the story, however in this mode, I feel like it was actually better here than in the original story mode, considering that you'll be flying around for a longer time, and you get to choose to fly or use Flying Nimbus. You can change your character appearance during the game at any time, from hair to outfit to voice and skin color. But let's face it, there isn't that much creativity in the character creation, it bugs me because my character just looks like a tanner version of Goku, dressed up like Broly. You can't really change your character's shape, or facial features besides the hair, you have to use the outfits everyone else has worn in the series, though you can change the color. When you start Hero mode, your character will be weaker than the other characters, but get's stronger as you fight other battles around the world, and collect the Dragon Balls.

Update: June 18th, 2012
I also seem to have forgotten to mention the voices. It's really just the same prerecorded voices that have been used throughout the entire DBZ fighting game franchise. I couldn't stand to play the story mode, because Frieza's voice actors kept changing between his older voice actor, and his DBZ Kai voice actor, while he was speaking. You really couldn't even bear to even bother recording newer voices? I don't care if it came out terrible, try honestly, why don't you?


To be honest, this game is probably one of the worst games I have played so far. I recommend picking this up at any retailer when the price is down to $30 or 20$ if you want to get it. The combat system is downright annoying and repetitive, and I feel that the entire combat system is indeed just enveloped into the QTE's that plague it. The story telling is also boring, and the character creation is lacking much in creativity.

Though it is kind of cheep, I must bring up that this game has Super Saiyan 4 Gogeta, but however doesn't have Super Saiyan 4 Goku or Vegeta. Teen Gohan is already in his Super Saiyan form. Where's the logic?

If i were to pick between Raging Blast 2 and Ultimate Tenkaichi, I'd have to give it Raging Blast 2, because in this game I can actually use the skill I have to play, instead of relying on the 50-50 chance which takes absolutely no skill whatsoever in Ultimate Tenkaichi.

All I'm asking for in a Dragon Ball Z game is an RPG game for Dragon Ball Z with a new story. Maybe if the Dragon Ball Z series where to continue after the Majin Buu Saga in the games I'd be happier to buy one.

I hope you found this review helpful. I wish I could actually recommend the game to you... but it is an utter disappointment.

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