Review: Dokkan Battle – Relive Dragonball Z on your Mobile

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Amazing graphics
Great gameplay
Good gaming strategy employed
Beaten Down
Maintenance schedule
Super attacks don't visually evolve with upgrades

If you miss the era of the Saiyan, then this is the game for you. Dokkan Battle puts you in the thick of the Dragonball Z saga.

Dokkan Battle is a battle card game where you use dragon stones to summon special cards and get increasingly better characters. You play through the main story as your username and replay through all the iconic scenes from the show, but with a twist. The story line this time around is there’s a dimensional time rift and future Trunks is trying fix it before all of existence is wiped out. This might seem a little familiar if you’ve played Dragon Ball Xenoverse.

You walk around a boardgame styled arena with the three random numbers to choose from. Every space you land on has a function, so you need to choose wisely and plan ahead. There are 5 different spots to land on: the capsule (which gives you an item), a character fight, an empty space (which does nothing) , Zeni (the games currency for upgrades) and a Question Mark (which can give you any of the before mentioned or just whack you for thousands of damage).

What separates this game from other card battle games is the fight mechanics. The usual card battle games have you just pit your cards against each other and who ever has the higher attack wins. This is completely changed in this game. You still collect rare and strong cards but it’s how you play them that matters.

Dokkan Battle uses a sphere chain link system where you tap one, and all the same colored orbs which are connecting are eaten. If it’s the same color as your character it’s worth two. To compliment this, certain character types are stronger (and weaker) against each other. So you have to really plan the order of your attack to optimize the attack values.

Like any card collecting game, both real and digital, the collecting of characters becomes really addictive. While it’s free to download and play, you can buy dragon stones (used to summon special characters) with cash to speed up your progress. You can get the dragon stones quite easily though through normal progression and through special events, but I found myself investing in some as I just needed to get more of my favorite characters.

There are tons of events including a World Tournament where you win big prizes for doing well. During these special events you can get cards not available elsewhere, as well as play through some of the scenes from the movies like “Tree of Might”.

Something has to be said for the graphics. For a mostly 2d environment, the super attacks look great. There’s a lot of attention placed on the characters and their super attacks. Beautifully rendered characters that make you feel like your watching the anime when you fire off the “Big Bang Attack” or the famous “Kamahamaha”.

My favorite part is when you actually get to control Goku (the main character from the anime) during the summoning and fire off a Kamahamaha into a planet exploding it and then receiving your characters. He says the “Kamahama” when you pull down for the blast, and screams the “Ha!!!!!” as you release just like in the cartoon. It brought back some seriously awesome memories as a child.

The only two problems that stop this from being a 10 are the upgrade system for the special attacks and the maintenance schedule. The maintenance schedule isn’t actually all that bad but can be annoying when in the middle of day I want to play on my train ride to work and it’s down for maintenance.

Maintenance can sometimes last a few hours longer than what they originally scheduled. The reason it’s not a big deal is that they give you lots of bonuses to make up for it… enough so that I managed to do a full 50 dragon stones special summon after saving up the freebies they give as an apology.

Now the one real let down is the leveling up system of the special attacks. You level up your characters normally like any RPG with experience points and can “Awaken” or “Z Awaken” them with certain medallions (sometimes transforming them into new characters completely, like Z Awakening Angel Goku to a Super Saiyan Goku).

As they level up they become stronger. Depending on its power, every card is worth a different amount of points. Depending on your level, your team is only allotted so many points. This actually makes for a good strategic gameplay where as even if your lucky enough to get Super Super Rare cards on your first summon, you have to level yourself up high enough to be able to use them all at the same time.

You’re able to level up a characters super attack by either farming characters with the same move and consuming them, or consuming the same character to level it up. I spent hours after hours farming characters and awakening medallions to max out a characters super attack, and there’s was no difference in his super attack power from level 1-10. It was a real let down.

Dokkan Battle is more than just your average time waster. It’s not only addictive but stays true to the heart of the much loved anime. All I can say is “Kamahama……….HAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!”