I’m a self-proclaimed Dragon Ball nerd. I grew up watching the anime right when it came to the Americas in 1996 and watched Dragon Ball, Z, and GT on Toonami. I still need to catch up on DBZ Kai, but regardless, I’ve always loved the characters, stories, and action presented in the series.
My favorite games were the three Budokai titles on the early Playstation consoles, and my least favorites so far have got to be the Xenoverse games that were most recently released. I get what they were trying to do with them, but they just came across as super stiff and disappointing. That’s why when I heard that Dragon Ball Z Kakarot was releasing to pretty much all platforms, I was ecstatic. However, I never expected it to launch on Google Stadia!
That’s right, you will soon be able to play another Dragon Ball game through your web browser via Google Stadia. I knew that once I collected all seven dragon balls I would get my wish. This is exciting for a few reasons. First, unlike Xenoverse 2, this is a new title, and Stadia isn’t getting scraps – that’s huge. Next, you’ll take on the role of anime’s most lovable, powerful, and hungry protagonist – Goku (Fight me). The game is a mostly faithful retelling of the anime canon, and as a 90’s kid, that automatically makes this the most exciting and worthwhile game in the series for me.
There are epic battles with iconic and classic villains who use signature and visually stunning moves that you normally would get in a competitive game. That’s because Kakarot is a single-player game, and developed by CyberConnect2, who happen to be very good at what they do. Because they didn’t need to worry about how each enemy would be balanced in a multiplayer mode, they went all out with the recreation of the best deaths, scenes, and episodes of the original series – that’s so freaking cool.
Oh, and better than the fighting is the focus on the quieter, character development moments from the show, which are mostly intact here. Pretty much all of the previous DBZ games left these out almost entirely, which was a shame. They assumed you knew about the show and were playing the game as an already established fan. Dragon Ball Z Kakarot assumes nothing and takes the player on a journey through the stories and lives of these characters in a semi-open world RPG with excellent fighting mechanics.
According to early reviews, the RPG elements do slow the game down a bit, and there’s little to no random encounter enemy variety, but I’m personally willing to sacrifice this in exchange for all that I mentioned above. Whether or not you will feel the same will likely depend on your nostalgia for your childhood and your favorite, most angry show growing up.
I’m excited to connect up a controller to my Google TV or Chrome browser, fight Raditz, Frieza, Cella, and others, and relive the good times as Goku while he bumps his head and forgets he was sent to Earth to destroy it. Ah, amnesia is literally the worst and most overused anime trope, but for Goku, it’s just so perfect. Dragon Ball Z Kakarot releases on Google Stadia tomorrow, October 26, 2021, and will definitely be a better buy than Xenoverse 2 on the platform!
“I am the hope of the universe…I am the answer to all living things that cry out for peace…I am the protector of the innocent…I am the light in the darkness…I am truth. Ally to good…Nightmare to you!”Goku, Dragon Ball Z