Almost a year after its original release, Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2 for Nintendo Switch has released for, as the game’s name reminds you, the Nintendo Switch. The game brings the full experience of last year’s release to the Switch, allowing you to take the full Xenoverse experience on the go. This includes all of the customization, fan service, fast combat, and story which provides hours of entertainment. This is our Dragonball Xenoverse 2 review for the Nintendo Switch.
Xenoverse 2 has the same general story as the original. You have been chosen as a group of Time Patrollers, fighters who prevent changes to the timeline to make sure the universe does not end. There is immediately a jab at Trunks, who had gone back in time in the show to help stop one of the show’s main antagonists, to let you know that they realize the hypocrisy of the game’s light story. After a lengthy tutorial, you begin taking on missions where you are sent back into time to help make sure the events of Dragon Ball Z take place as they are intended.
The game’s main story takes place in Conton City, the main hub city created for Xenoverse 2. It is full of other time patrollers, along with NPCs who you can speak with to learn a bit more of lore and get extra side quests. You are also able to visit shops for gear, take on extra side quests, find parties online to finish your quests with or fight against, as well as progress the main story. You are only able to find others online if they are specifically looking for a quest that you have unlocked, meaning that if you try to jump in right after starting the game you will have a hard time finding others to play with.
The game is a good mix of fighting and RPG, with the combo system being fairly complex and adding unlockable skills and styles for the player to customize their character with. The main storyline battles will throw you straight into the action, giving you a cutscene to show where in the story the battle takes place and lets you get right into the action. As with any RPG, there is also a multitude of side quests that the player can take on, ranging from combat to collection which allows players to explore the area and find items with their scouter.
Character creation allows you to pick from one of 5 races and giving a reasonable amount of facial options, all of which look like they could fit into the anime. You are able to choose a Majin, a Saiyan, a Namekian, a Human, or a “Freiza race”. Each has their own strengths and weaknesses, meant to complement your intended playstyle.
The combat of the game does a great job capturing the feel of Dragon Ball Z combat but does have some frustrations that come with the speed of combat. The arenas that you are thrown into allow full 3d movement, allowing you to fly around during combat, throwing your enemies around and getting thrown around, warping into combat to keep combos going, switching targets and all-around help create an enjoyable but hectic experience. With all of the movement, however, comes with a camera which can impede the experience due to having to fight with the camera just as much as your opponent. While there is a lock on system to keep your facing your current target, the camera has a tendency to over-react to movements and will occasionally be facing in a different direction than you want it to. This will also affect your movement controls, meaning you may go flying in a direction you did not intend to while trying to fight. This is something that you get used to after some play time, but is very jarring at first and has a bit of a learning curve.
The combat system itself is enjoyable, allowing you to pick a preferred style of play to start with (ranged, melee, or balanced) and allowing you to go from there. You start off with some fairly simple combos, and move into more complicated tricks like how to throw your opponent, warp behind them or dash after them and continue attacking them. Movement skills are dictated by your stamina, meaning you cannot keep spamming your movement repeatedly to chase or get away from an opponent. Stamina will recharge over time, forcing you to make good use of your movement. Ki, on the other hand, is used for your special attacks and does not passively recharge. You gain Ki from attacking, getting attacked, or using items or skills. Both your stamina and Ki bars can be increased throughout the game by gaining levels or using gear to improve on them.
Overall, Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2 for Nintendo Switch is a fun game which works well when you get over the steep learning curve of fighting the game’s controls. Playing through the entirety of the DBZ story is a blast, and while some design flaws persisted to the port to the Switch, the game is still worth a play if you are a fan of the series.
Note: Our Switch copy of Dragonball Xenoverse 2 was provided by PR for BNEA.