New to DragonBall? Take a deep breath and weâ€™ll get you up to raging speed.
This is no doubt, a game made predominately for fans of the mighty popular DragonBall series. Written and illustrated by Akira Toriyama, the original Manga series follows the adventures of Goku as he trains in martial arts and fights his ways through countless battles in search of the seven mystical objects known as the Dragon Balls, which can summon a dragon that can grant wishes. Of course, loads of other people also want to get their grubby mitts on the balls and though Goku does make some friends on his journey, the series is most remembered for the battles. And so we come to Raging Blast.
There are around 90 characters on offer to choose from the Dragon Ball universe and the tutorial alone is epic. The controls are mainly the same as other titles in the DB series though have apparently been modified to make them easier for newbies. Still, expect some serious button mashing. You can get by with some super frantic guess work, some happily timed X button combos and the odd jump but beyond that it gets very confusing and you will die a lot as you plod around like a lumping great elephant on tranquilisers as your opponent rushes at you with incredible speed. However, fans and proficient fighters will find real delight in the overwhelming number of rushes, charges and combos that produce some awesome moves. Add some Saiyan powers into the mix and youâ€™re soon soaring, firing off kamehamehas left, right and centre as you can jump, fight and move in any direction. Movement is swift to say the least and controlled either via the left stick (forwards, backwards, side to side, cha cha cha) or the shoulder buttons (up and down). Whilst hovering and zooming about, you can slam the breaks on at any time with A or pull off a slam/punch/kick/other fancy pants move with X and it all gets rather exciting. The camera manages to keep up for most of the time and tries to keep both you and your opponent on screen during battles…. except for when you are on different vertical levels and your brain scrambles around trying to work out where your opponents head or feet have gone. Luckily, a quick tap of a button later and you hurtle towards your opponent. The fighting is relentless and demands that youâ€™re quick thinking and even quicker on the control pad to get the upper hand. There arenâ€™t even any cut scenes to take you away from the action, just some fighting chit chat at the start before you lay into each other. Even the enormous destructible environments can be used to devastating effects as you can smash your foes into rocks creating gaping chasms in the earth and the music pounds on in a retro Mystical Ninja Goeman â€œDash Dash Dashâ€ sort of a way.
As responsible gamers, you will of course be planning regular breaks for food and what better way to take some well earned time away from the mad fighting frenzy than with a trip to the Dragon Ball Museum where you can watch recorded battle replays and explore the vast array of characters in extensive detail like Raditz and his bacon thong glam rock outfit or the slightly creepy bobble-hatted Chiaotzu, along with voice samples. Bit of a waste of time for newcomers as so many of the characters look the same but a real treat for DragonBall fans. As you play you also unlock additional pictures plus cool items to use in the Ultimate Customize mode, where you can tailor super saiyan moves and items to suit your mood and fighting style before getting back to the fighting. Head over to Xbox Live and try out your skills with up to 16 friends in World Tournament or you can try battle mode where you can form special teams of characters. Japanese carnage with spiky hair and devastating moves a go-go!
Overall, newcomers might find it hard going at first but persistence reveals a game that is thrilling and requires skill. Raging Blast is exactly that and is a joy for fighters and fans of the series.