Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot Review


It’s time to look at the DBZ game that came out recently. It definitely looked like a real game of the year contender from the instant that we got the first teasers. Interestingly the game kept focusing on the first two arcs so for a while there I was wondering if Arc 3 would be included at all. Fortunately it is here so the game ends up feeling pretty complete. The story took me around 20 hours which is pretty good for an action title. It’s quite rare for any to rank all the way up there. It’s an excellent game and one I definitely recommend.

The story follows the events of the DBZ show/manga. If you don’t know what that is, here’s a quick recap. Goku is a hero who has saved the planet many times. He ended up marrying Chi Chi prior to the game’s start and they had a kid named Gohan. That’s when an alien named Raditz arrives and kidnaps Goku’s son. Goku has to then team up with Piccolo to stop him. Along the way more aliens show up such as Vegeta and Frieza as well as androids like Cell and even mythical beings like Majin Buu. Goku will have to keep on training in order to keep up with these guys, but he believes that he will be up to the task. Goku’s never turned down a challenge before and he doesn’t intend to start now.

The gameplay is similar to the Dragon Ball Z Budokai Tenkaichi series although styles in more of a single player fashion. You’re using less advanced combos here and more flashy moves to take the opponent down. It’s fun using all of the signature attacks from the show and you can learn new moves/upgrade old ones as you go through the game. I didn’t touch the upgrading part until deep in arc 2, but it’s a handy feature. You won’t be able to upgrade all that much without going through some Roshi training though. Once you beat the game you can unlock all of the training lessons and then you can make your characters really strong. If you want to beat a powerful enemy without leveling up then just buy a lot of health items. Those come in handy although of course it will make getting S ranks a little more difficult. I got an S rank on almost every level but I don’t believe there is much of a reward for doing so here so it’s not a big deal.

In combat you’ll be fine if you just go with your instincts. Typically I like to just stick to physical attacks and don’t use the special moves much unless the opponent is shooting a laser and I don’t want to wait for it to end. Sniping the enemy with a laser of your own is a really good way to counter such a technique. If the opponent is blocking your hits a lot then I would recommend landing a few hits, teleporting, and then attacking more. The opponent is forced to either drop his guard and get hit or let his shield be broken. Either way works out quite nicely for you. There is a good amount of depth to the gameplay so you have the liberty of finding what method of fighting works best for you. The toughest fights for me were the ones where you have to fight multiple opponents. The Cell Jrs that launched at you were no joke.

Meanwhile the graphics here are definitely top tier. There are a lot of animated cutscenes to watch where the characters duke it out and even the normal cutscenes look really good. The engine works really well for a game like DBZ and it feels like you are back in the TV show. The most impressive cutscene was probably Vegito’s battle against Super Buu. The animators definitely had a lot of fun with that one. The scene of Vegeta and Kid Buu punching each other was also styled really well. It keeps up with FighterZ as the two best looking DBZ games. Then you’ve got the soundtrack which is really great. You’ll recognize a lot of the themes from the anime which is a nice touch. We also get an insert song at the very end of the game which was pretty neat. There was certainly no corners being cut in this title.

The sheer amount of content here is also impressive. As I mentioned I beat the game in around 20 hours. That’s considering that I didn’t stop to do any side quests or things like that. I just plunged right through the story. If you consider the side quests, extra boss, and leveling up then you’ll be here for quite a while. The Platinum trophy in this game actually sounds pretty achievable so if I start trophy hunting again then this would be one of the first games that I would focus on. I’d estimate that the game should take you around 40 hours to complete everything. That’s a lot of time and really helps to justify your purchase. Even just wandering around the hub world driving your car and fishing can be a lot of fun. The game did a good job of adding a lot of different gameplay options to have fun with. The game even let you play Baseball for a second which was nice.

Kakarot is a reasonably challenging game, but not one where you will ever be stuck for long. It all feels pretty fair and balanced in part because there are always workarounds. If a boss is too difficult for you right now then you can go and train somewhere, unlock new attacks, re-position your stat medals, cook some food, buy potions, etc. There is no way you will actually be stuck for very long but at the same time you may enjoy just retrying the battle a few times when the opponent is hard to beat like this as it really helps you learn the fighting style. Before long you’ll be racking up S rank after S rank.

Overall, Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot is a superb game. It’s easily one of the best DBZ games I’ve played. I’ve seen it compared to Attack of the Saiyans quite a lot. While that game is also very good, I would have to give this one the edge. I’d put it in third place right behind FighterZ and Budokai Tenkaichi 3. I hope we get a sequel to this game which adapts GT, the movies, and Super. I’m sure they could also do that through DLC as well, but a sequel would be ideal because then it could be a full 20+ hour experience with a lot of cutscenes. I feel like you are slightly more limited with what you can do when it’s DLC but that’s not necessarily true. If you haven’t gotten this game yet then I’d recommend changing that. It’s one of the most complete DBZ adaptions you’ll ever see. When you finish the story you’ll feel as though you just scratched the surface of what the title has in store for you.

Overall 9/10

Cell vs Buu




These two characters are certainly iconic DBZ villains. Their overwhelming power was stunning and the heroes really had a tough time against them. Of course this match is a no brainer if you’re just looking at the main material, but these two have gotten many power ups over the years in spinoffs and video games. Still, Cell hasn’t quite gotten a form that lets him surpass Buu yet. Buu has done a good job of keeping pace with just about everyone. Even now there aren’t too many villains who are actually stronger than him. Buu wins.

Cell vs Simon (Gurren Lagann)




Both of these competitors couldn’t wait to start the second round, but this is one time where size won’t be enough. Simon is one of the strongest non DBZ characters out there. He can destroy most opponents simply by moving since it would be enough to destroy a planet. That won’t be enough against a foe who can destroy solar systems though. Cell’s power is incredibly scary with how many options he has and his speed is also crazy. Simon won’t be hitting this guy and even if he could graze him it wouldn’t do much thanks to Cell’s healing factor. Cell wins.

Lady Clayface vs Cell


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Suggested by Anonymous Lady Clayface is fairly powerful and certainly not a fighter that many would want to tangle with. Being made of clay makes her difficult to grab so it’s best to stick to long range combat against for. Fortunately for Cell he has the Super Kamehameha which will have more than enough power to deal with her. She couldn’t survive getting hit with such an attack and she most certainly isn’t fast enough to dodge it. As far as I can see, she has no options left. Cell wins.

Cell vs Doomsday




Suggested by Anonymous Doomsday is a powerful DC villain. I dare say that he is probably top 5 if not top 3. At the same time, he is up against Cell who is an incredibly powerful DBZ villain. Whole solar systems would be crushed as soon as he fired off a single blast. Doomsday can adapt during a fight, but he won’t be able to adapt quick enough to bridge this gap in power. It’s simply too drastic and Cell has a wide arsenal of moves to choose from. Cell wins.

Cell vs Bastion




Suggested by Anonymous Bastion is a talented duelist even if he did crack a little over the course of the series. He’s very intelligent as well so he may come up with the best possible strategy for fighting Cell. Still, the best strategy among a bunch of hopeless ones still isn’t ultimately going to amount to much here. Cell is simply too powerful and won’t be going down very easily. A single blast will end the match so there’s not much Bastion can do about that. Cell wins.

Larry Talbot vs Cell



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Suggested by Anonymous Larry Talbot is a resourceful guy and he is not afraid to throw a few punches as well. Thing is, that’s not enough against a foe of Cell’s caliber. One misplaced punch and it’s all over for Talbot. He could transform into his werewolf state, but that one isn’t even bullet proof and barely enhances his physical abilities. Cell’s immediate counter strike will be fatal. Cell wins.

Imhotep vs Cell




Suggested by Anonymous Imhotep is a strong mummy but I don’t think he has what it takes to stop Cell. Cell is simply way too strong as he can take down a whole solar system in an instant if he chooses to do so. No amount of sand will be enough to deter such a powerful attack and speed has never been Imhotep’s strong suit. Cell wins.

Clayface vs Cell


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Suggested by Anonymous Clayface may not be the flashiest Batman villain on the block but his powers are actually quite lethal. I would consider him to be one of the Dark Knight’s toughest foes even if his intellect isn’t particularly high. Still, there isn’t much he can do about blowing up the planet. Cell is simply too fast and frankly, Cell is too powerful as well. There is nothing Clayface can do. Cell wins.

Killer Croc vs Cell




Suggested by Anonymous Killer Croc has a mean bite and personally I don’t think anyone would really want to go up against him. That being said, he just won’t stand a chance against Cell. Cell could just blow up the whole solar system and that would end the fight in a heartbeat. There is no way for Croc to dodge or endure the attack so he may as well throw in the towel now. Good game KC, but the outcome was never in doubt. Cell wins.