Dragon Ball Assaults The Wii
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The original Dragon Ball story debuts on the Wii system for the first time ever, making use of the system's innovative motion technology to lay out the plot. However, where some might welcome this title to the flock with open arms, others might find this new experience a little less than desirable. Nevertheless, publisher and developer Namco Bandai brings "Dragon Ball: Revenge of King Piccolo" to a Wii near you"or not.
The presentation of the game itself is much more polished than other Dragon Ball platformers we've seen in the past showing off some visually impressive footage during the intro and some cool cut-scenes and special effects during game play. Portrayed as a 3-D side scrolling adventure it's nice to see the series take a spin from the norm.
Taking fans back to the early days of Dragon Ball, the story focuses around the heroic young Goku in his earlier days and his initial quest to find his Grandfather's infamous dragon ball collection.
A ton of enemies and strange, yet larger than life bosses stand in the way of course, which means players are going to have to open up a can of "Wii karate" on the opposition in order for Goku to be successful during his adventures.
The controls are fairly easy to pick up. Some might say a little too easy. You could most likely smash your way through this entire adventure pressing just the "A" button for basic attacks and combos. You can branch off basic attack combos by pressing the directional stick in multiple directions. A little more of the moderately difficult combos out there include knocking your opponent into the air and then locking onto them with the "z" button of the nun chuck and assaulting them with a flashy air attack.
And when the opposition gets a little thick, Goku can unleash a powerful "kamehameha" attack to obliterate any foes caught in the line of fire. Goku can also make use of various throwing items such as bombs or missiles when opportunity arises to dispatch enemies. Other than this arsenal of moves there's not much else to talk about.
Navigation is pretty straight forward. It's a side-scrolling game after, all right? However, Goku will often encounter obstacles too high for him or shallow ground beneath his feet. To reach higher ground in the game players will be required to lock onto nearby lighted floating objects with the z button and then spring off them to reach the next level. A "ground smash" move can be performed to knock shallow flooring out from under Goku's feet to descend to lower levels when needed.
It should be noted that trying to reach higher ground can be a bit frustrating as Goku doesn't always jump in the right direction every time when vaulting off of mid-air objects. It may take more than a few attempts to get where you need to go.
Overall, the game itself isn't all that bad. It does, however, just come off as very bland. It's quite easy to vanquish enemies as you navigate throughout each level and it doesn't take a ton of effort to figure a level bosses' attack patterns before they don't offer much of a challenge either.
Other than a slightly frustrating game play quirk with jumping to higher levels navigation proves to be fairly mundane and uneventful. It just feels like the whole adventure needs more fattening to help keep things interesting. You can't even count on the multiplayer modes to hold your interests for significantly extended periods of time.
To make a long story short, there's not much challenge to the game, especially for veteran gamers and that's a real shame as there could have been some serious game play potential for this one had a little more thought been put into it.
Sorry, Namco Bandai, even the innovative features of the Wii can't keep this game from falling short of being inevitably bland. A mediocre presentation with questionable difficulty at best, I would recommend this one for newcomers to the series rather than hardcore fans.
Jevon Jenkins enjoys all types of games, especially those where the programmer's imagination is evident. He can be reached at : firstname.lastname@example.org.