|System: X360, PS3||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Spike||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Namco Bandai||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Nov. 10, 2009||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-2||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
Speaking of characters, they're another thing the Raging Blast gets right. With over 70 playable characters, Raging Blast has plenty of characters to play with, each with their own distinct moves and special attacks. The game also features several characters that have different forms (such as Goku, Frieza, Trunks, and Cell) and the game allows you to switch between these forms during gameplay. This is definitely an advantage, as a third-form Frieza will have a more devastating Ki attack than a second level Frieza. However, I found it was a little bit easier to just select the strongest-form character from the character select screen than try and level them up while in-battle.
As far as multiplayer modes are concerned, Raging Blast fails to impress. Though there are some decent online multiplayer modes, including ranked, unranked, and World Tournament modes, there are serious lag issues that make it difficult to finish just one match. Though the game provides plenty of incentive to play online, the lag issues make it simply impossible. There is also an offline versus mode where you can play against a friend. However, this mode features a vertical split-screen, which combined with the poor camera controls, makes for a very confusing multiplayer experience.
However, despite all the poor multiplayer and gameplay aspects of the game, there is at least one bright spot: the game looks good. Last year's Burst Limit certainly pushed the series miles beyond anything we had seen before for the series, but Raging Blast continues to add detail and polish to the overall package. Character models and animations are extremely sharp, and feature a lot more detail than they did previously. The only aspect of the visuals that does not belong in the "much improved" category is the environment. The wide arena-style stages feature plenty of space, but there just isn't that much filling up these areas. Landforms and buildings also don't feature a lot of detail, and the ground often has repetitive texturing issues.
Dragon Ball: Raging Blast has a lot of things going for it including an interesting story mode, great graphics, and a huge character roster. However, the foundation of the game - the battle system - isn't very fun, and that sinks the whole experience. I would have really loved to get the full Dragon Ball Z experience with this game, as it is the most inclusive entry in the series to date. However, between the clunky combat and the whacked out camera, I just can't recommend Raging Blast to anyone. It's too bad, as this game could have been great, but for now, it is just a missed opportunity.
Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Staff Contributor