If musclebound, giants with increasingly ridiculous hair throwing punches and ki blasts about gets your power level rising then Xenoverse 2 may be your game of the year.
Xenoverse 2 tells the story of ‘you’ the newest recruit to the Time Patrollers – a group in the Dragon Ball world who help to protect the timeline from outside influences.
If this sounds like an excuse plot that’ll allow you to fight a whole host of iconic Dragon Ball baddies with your own custom made Z fighter then you’d be right and it’s awesome.
For fans of all things Dragon Ball, Xeonverse 2 is a joy, allowing players to literally step into the show and help Goku and his stupid haired friends save the Earth from the evil Frieza, Cell and Buu.
Rather than focus on adding new and exciting featured Dimps have concentrated on improving the core game-play and story, polishing the original Xenoverse engine and removing irritating bugs.
This makes the actual battles far more enjoyable and removes some of the original’s more Super Saiyan rage inducing moments.
Unfortunately for those less acquainted with the series who are looking for a deeper fighter, they’ll most likely be disappointed. The game features very little actual tactics and the combo system is paper thin.
Complicating matters further is the rather irritating difficulty curve, while some missions are an absolute breeze if you have higher stats than your opponent, others are so needlessly hard they’ll have you grinding your teeth together so hard you’ll be at risk of reducing them to a fine powder.
In one particular annoying fight I got caught in an unbreakable loop, constantly being bashed against the arena’s invisible barrier by Frieza’s bigger meaner brother Cooler until I died, which was less than fun.
Mechanics aside, where Xenoverse 2 excels most is in its story which – while not particularly detailed (it’s basically the same Dragon Ball plot we’ve been playing forever) – is made interesting again by the introduction of the time changes.
These fun little moments see villain team-ups that were previously banished to the dark realm of fan fiction finally come to life and they’re delightfully entertaining if a little puzzling at times.
The game has a wonderfully developed character creation system which, while not on the level of Skyrim or Fallout, is more than robust enough to make the fighter of your dreams a reality.
While the story’s definitely the main draw of Xenoverse the game’s absolutely full of content from fetch missions and minigames in the world’s hub to online battles with your very own digital rival.
One of the more fun additions is the inclusion of a raid-like system called a boss battle. This mode sees six fighters enter an arena and fight a beefed up ‘boss’ character.
This isn’t just a six on one punch fest, there are actual mechanics involved which reminded me of World of Warcraft’s later dungeons, and challenges players to free their comrades from mind control and fight doppelgangers before they can beat the boss.
While Xenoverse 2 isn’t perfect, it is a fun, engaging experience that’ll have Dragon Ball fans wishing for more.