Dragon Ball Z Burst Limit First Look

Atari and Dimps get their fusion on, upgrading the popular 3D fighting series to the Xbox 360 and PS3.

Atari has had its fair share of success with its 3D fighters based on Dragon Ball Z in the past few years. The publisher is looking to keep that streak going with Dragon Ball Z: Burst Limit, an Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 upgrade to the series developed by longtime Japanese collaborator Dimps. We had the chance to get a first look and try out a work-in-progress version of the upcoming game, which is looking like a promising first step into the current generation of consoles.

Whether battling on the ground or in the sky, DBZ Burst Limit promises intense action.

Dragon Ball Z: Burst Limit doesn't appear to be straying too far from the formula that's worked so well for the previous games. You'll find five modes that cover the expected bases. Z Chronicles is the story mode, which lets you play through one main story. For those keeping score at home, the game's storyline will run from the beginning of the series to the end of the Cell saga. Rather than have you play as a set character throughout, you'll take control of different characters, depending on how the story plays out. The game will feature three main characters, Goku, Piccolo, and Krillin, which should not come as a surprise to anyone, considering when the story is set. However, as you progress through the story, you'll come to unlock more than 20 playable characters. If that's not enough characters for you, the game will offer dozens of cameos through one of the gameplay mechanics, which we'll cover in just a bit. While Atari reps were tight-lipped about the exact stages in the game, if you know the story, you can make some guesses as to where you might be duking it out.

The Versus mode offer four match types, three of which test your skills and one of which offers you a chance to learn by watching. Versus CPU lets you test your skills against the computer, while Versus player lets you take on a friend on the same machine. Xbox Live lets you take on random folks online from around the world, which is a first for the series. This will feature leaderboards and rankings to let you see how you stack up against the competition on the world stage. Finally CPU versus CPU lets you pit the computer against itself, which can be handy if you're looking to figure out some fighting techniques. The Trial mode is a collection of three submodes, but Atari reps would only reveal the Survival mode to us. The other two unlockable modes are currently being kept under wraps. A Tutorial mode will get you up to speed on the game's fighting system, and a Training mode will let you practice against a customizable CPU opponent.

As you might expect, a game like Burst Limit will live or die by its fighting system, and from what we've seen so far, it's shaping up well. The system is more along the lines of Dimps' Budokai games and has a solid, balanced feel to it. Combat will take place in a general sphere, whether you're on the ground or in the air. As with previous games, the battle can go from land to air in a heartbeat. There isn't as much interactivity with the levels from what we've seen so far; think of the modest stuff done in the early Budokai games, but combat does have a good feel to it. Counters and special attacks feel pretty good although timing is always something that takes some getting used to with each game.

A new addition to the combat is the drama piece system, which lets you pick three helpers before going into a battle; you'll start out with a modest pool of them but unlock a small army as you go through the game. The characters trigger automatically during combat if specific conditions are met. So, for example, if you equip helpers who block throws or shield you from a certain type of attack, they'll just hop in and do their thing when your opponent tries to get the move off during a fight. The downside is that the helpers act as one unit only during a fight, so you can't rely on them to compensate for any lack of skills on your part. The guard system offers the same blocking and teleporting options we've seen before, but the timing is trickier given the game's blistering speed. You'll also be able to block supermoves at the cost of ki energy.

You'd think all that hair would be a detriment in combat.

The visuals in the game are eye-popping, courtesy of the sexy marriage of slick cel-shaded art with the HD power-up afforded by the PS3 and the Xbox 360. The work-in-progress version of the game we tried was just stunning and popped in HD. The action was fast, almost to the point of not being able to follow what was going on, and the frame rate held steadily even in this unfinished state.

The audio will, again, be pitch-perfect for fans of the series, thanks to the use of both the American and Japanese voice actors. Expect the special kind of rock music that only DBZ could roll with, as well as the standard clutch of familiar sound effects for the various blows and powers.

Fans of DBZ will most definitely be pleased with where Burst Limit is heading. The game is looking great, and the gameplay is solid. It may not be not as robust as what we saw on the latter games on the last-gen systems, but it's a good start for the series, especially with the inclusion of online play. Newcomers to the series may want to check it out because the fighting system is accessible and 3D fighters are pretty thin these days. Dragon Ball Z: Burst Limit is set to ship this July for the PS3 and the Xbox 360.

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Discussion

325 comments
dragospodariu
dragospodariu

they could make one long game for each saga like legacy of goku1,2 and buu's fury

dragospodariu
dragospodariu

come on no fusion and no super sayan 4 this game isn't as good as i expected it's like budokai 1

dragospodariu
dragospodariu

this game is just like a remake of budokai1 i hope they'l remake the other games too

alfonsorc84
alfonsorc84

too bad they didnt include the majin boo saga ... if they've included that one thats a must buy for me but right now i dont know ...

Ghost_702
Ghost_702

I hope they spent more time making quite a few special moves specific for each character rather than having just one and then another that a few other characters share.

keerigan
keerigan

the game looks sick, but it sucks that there are less characters. The game play isn't bad either, I played the demo and wish that it was the exact same controls as dbzb3. The Ki gauge was kinda confusing.

jadefury27
jadefury27

i love the fact they've gone back to the budokai system but it's shorter on story than the other games. not willing to part with 50-60 bucks for the same story again. maybe a spin on the storyline like in shin budokai : another road is in order.

cell_100
cell_100

im defo gettin this cause i love dbz good thing its gone back to dbzb3 cause hated the camera views on tencaichi stop . comparing it with mgs4 ,which im also buyin, but they tottally different genres

King3rs
King3rs

No idea how I seen MGS on this topic. Seriously. and like said before, It ended at the Cell Saga because thats where the series was SUPPOSE to end. IMO, The Cell Saga was the best. Everything after that was alright. and just because its missing 120 or so characters is because who knows? I remember in the last game, every character basically had the same attacks and such. I dont see the point in having so many characters who didn't have the big roles in the story. GT was uninteresting. My badd. The demo (360 owner) was pretty nice. It went back to it's roots, which I personally liked in Budokai 3. Hope it delivers. Who knows? DL contend?! *Dramatic music (alittle?)*

Legacyoftain
Legacyoftain

There is a good reason alot of DBZ games only go to the cell saga...No 1..that was SUPPOSED to be the end of the series according to Akira..He was pressured by the TV networks due to the popularity of the show at the time to write more on to the show. This is also why he wasn't particulary involed much with GT because it was a last ditch effort to "milk" the Dragonball story line. So to have most of the games only go to the end of the Cell Saga makes sense because Goku was always the star of Dragonball and when he "died" so did the series.

SpartanChaos999
SpartanChaos999

I'm a fan of DBZ although I stopped watching it since the end of GT. I was interested in this game when I heard it is coming onto next gen consoles and figured the game would be immensely better and improved. Only thing annoying is the cut scenes that occur during battle as you are stopped in your tracks while performing a attack or special move and the enemy does not get damaged....

mcboy-7
mcboy-7

If you like DBZ, good for you! I do....but if u don't, why don't u go off and diss some other game becoz people don't want retards dissing somethign based apon one thing that doens't really go towards anything...

Pats_Own
Pats_Own

Aight, for all you whining about it ending at the Cell Saga and it basically being a rehashed budakai 1, what did you expect really? Number 1 ending the game early makes for better story development, and if you don't want to see or play the same story then find something else to do with your time. Don't get pissy because you want content that will never come. The story ended get used to it.

Panman_Dan
Panman_Dan

Why do they keep making fighting games based on DBZ, they need to do something with the series in the direction the Gameboy went with a more adventure aspect, I think it would sell more titles...

lumbeeman055
lumbeeman055

demo is awsome so what if it only goes 2 da cell saga i will still buy

Jazzman_Owns
Jazzman_Owns

I personally like the fact that it ends after the Cell Saga. Everything after that point was awful in my opinion. I'm glad i won't have to deal with any of those lame characters in this game. The only good character introduced was Kilah in the World Tournament, but he's so sweet he deserves his own game anyway.

CageFury
CageFury

SPD_WeBmAsTaH and ukillwegrill: Exactly.

ukillwegrill
ukillwegrill

Only to the Cell saga...lame All the cool characters and forms were introduced in the Buu saga

SPD_WeBmAsTaH
SPD_WeBmAsTaH

I don't think it's worth getting since it only ends at the Cell Saga because I mean come on, we're at this current gen systems with the power to do so much more and they pawn off on us the same as the first Budokai game with so little content. It's basically a re-release of Budokai 1 from the last gen to this gen only with better graphics in HD and that's about it.

ygjohn
ygjohn

The last line of the First Look article states that the game will ship this July. Is this an error? It has already been reported to ship in June.

Gmr900
Gmr900

Why are people even comparing MGS and DBZ? They are nothing alike!!!!

Paramore16
Paramore16

I agree sacker63.. This game looks awesome and I dont think people should prejudge games like MGS4 just because they look good. Personally , I think this game looks awesome!!!!! (Hardcore DBZ fan For LIFE!!!!!!!)

punkdsk8erdude
punkdsk8erdude

im personally excited for this game - but just throwing this out there: how come in every screen shot w/ vegeta in it, even ones where he is super saiyin, we only see him in his original saiyin uniform (w/ tail) that he originally came to earth in? just thought i'd point it out there lol.

DRXgamer93
DRXgamer93

sacker63 wow truly are you serious this game is going to be awful I played the demo, and so far it has no changes, besides they rushe this game soo much 3 months ago they gave us the first look, and it was supposed to come out next year, but come on this game is missing sooo much stuff. Besides MgS is looking to be a great game and it wasnt rushed.

yoyoaman
yoyoaman

i did not say MGS4 was going 2 be bad im going 2 buy MGS4 But im geting this 1st cuz im a big DBZ fan. GT sagas sucked eny way i mean ssj4 goku , Vegeta and gogeta were cool but the story was lame compared 2 DBZ. didnt like eny of the BT games its just me. im glad they went back 2 the B3 style this game is going 2 PWN. HolteEnder4Life I AGREE with expect 4 the Anime didnt suck till after the suxed after the Buu saga. cant wait 2 get online with GoKu and Vegeta i play on PSN look 4 Sanchez719 but not till that game comes out.

sacker63
sacker63

I love how people are commenting about how bad this game "is" and how good mgs 4 "is". DRXgamer93... you have no idea what either of these games are going to be like when they actually roll out, so please, all self-annointed "experts" can please just shut up. None of will know until the tiles actually drop.

HolteEnder4Life
HolteEnder4Life

im glad it only goes to the end of the cell saga, after that the cartoon sucked. im pretty imperessed with the demo, dbzbt3 sucked alot, so im glad to see the gameplay tweeked a little

DRXgamer93
DRXgamer93

WAit yoyoaman are you serious what are you thinking this game blows all the parts of my body now deadlyones i totally agree with you this game is gonna suckkkk sooooo badddd. P.S- MSG 4 is going to quite possibly be one of the greatest games ever made. besides is it just me or are the graphics just like DBZbt3 I mean seriously

DeadlyOnez
DeadlyOnez

yoyoaman DBZ better then metal gear solid?? your smoking the wrong stuff. dbz bt3 was a good game way better then this game

DeadlyOnez
DeadlyOnez

Dbztb3 is better. No destructable scenery no gt saga I'm so disappointed

Gmr900
Gmr900

The game only goes to the end of the cell saga? That sux!

dewd4
dewd4

I liked the demo but only 20 characters really annoys me. I hope say when 1 char is goku you can switch betewwn goku/super sayain/goku/vegeta/goku super sayain 4 etc

yoyoaman
yoyoaman

Looks great cant wait played the demo fighting has improved better then that DBZ BT3 crap calling a Tranformation a charater is horriable i played BT3 10 mins b4 breaking it and going back 2 budokai 3. Big fan of DBZ would buy this over MGS4 eny day Wish it went up 2 buu saga but watever and about hte 20 charaters better 2 have 20 good charaters then 50 retarted ones

CageFury
CageFury

Ooooo pretty.... that's about it.

DemonI81
DemonI81

Go ahead and drag it out... I'll buy them. Leave out key controls... and Namco can eat me.

sckisback14
sckisback14

ok, yes they are trying to prolong the series by not adding everything they possibly can but can you blame them? this is such a popular fighting game and adding everyting would be stupid as hell , not saying i'm happy about it -being a fan myself- but i'm not gonna complain either. i will definetly be getting this game because i'm interested to see what they've added to it.

sauke2099
sauke2099

dont buy the games then jeez dramatic as hell

calikalel
calikalel

The Cell saga?? Are you F#@&ING kidding me??! Why aren't more fans of the series pissed off and sounding off about this?! This is such an obvious BS ploy to squeeze money out of the fans by dragging out the series as long as they can. I am getting pretty sick and tired of these next gen games cutting out last gen content. They charge us ten dollars more for the same game with polished up graphics that are now missing tons of features and content. And don't worry DRX, the developers announced there would be NO downloadable content made available for the game. That way, you can't even hope for them to nickel and dime you to death so you can get all the missing characters from the series...and even though it is only to the Cell Saga....20 characters means we will be missing a lot. So keep your fingers crossed guys, if we get lucky, this time next year we might get half the characters from the Bu saga.

kos1085
kos1085

I played the demo and it feels too similar to the old DBZ games. That offically killed my interest in this game.

DemonI81
DemonI81

I was really looking forward to this game... sadly though, after playing the demo I have to say I will not but buying or even renting it. DBZ in 1080p got me psyched. I have DBZ:BT2 for the Wii, (got a 360 and haven't played the Wii since), thinking of all that's possible in that game, I thought this one would be amazing. So many fighting controls that need to be there are missing... the ability to charge ki, the ability to fly up and down around. Movement through the stage was awkward. Fighting was just as awkward. Play the demo, it's on LIVE. I doubt you'll wanna buy the game after that. Or maybe you haven't played a good DBZ game yet so you'll still like it.

iory2
iory2

Played the demo today and really liked it, good thing xbox 360 supports custom soundtracks for every game this way i can have the original japanese sound track in the game.

360nly
360nly

thank you for the mini demo the gameplay is awesome i can't not wait to test my skills online

DRXgamer93
DRXgamer93

WATCH we will have to buy the missing 120 characters LOL this game has alot of work that needs to be done.

DRXgamer93
DRXgamer93

OK waffleman are like ultra obsessed with dragon ball z. because this looks good, but i would NEVER chose a DbZ fighting game other than the metal gear solid series. Besides this has chopped alot of things from th previous installments

Waffleman60
Waffleman60

I am a huge DBZ fan and I might not get MGS 4 because of this.

RossiShakaBlue
RossiShakaBlue

Dragon Ball Z is way past its sell by date, and the graphics stay the same in every single installment.

CageFury
CageFury

Wow.. If it was steaming piles of sh*t with goku and vegeta masks you would still buy this game.