Epic Games announced yesterday that Fortnite’s new 100 player Battle Royale mode will be free-to-play across all systems from next week. Which is cool, I guess. PU’S BATTLEGROUNDS is breaking all kinds of records at the moment, which is also cool, I suppose. But do you know what would be cooler than both of those?
SPOILER WARNING: For those of you who might not have watched up to the most recent arc of DragonBall Super.
Battle Royale games are hot property at the moment. What started back with the DayZ for ARMA 2 has snowballed, creating a new era-defining sub-genre of games. If the past decade was defined by MOBA’s and then Hero-Shooters, then 2017 looks like the start of the Battle Royale period. PUBG, the current juggernaut that is breaking records all over the place, is seemingly dictating where the game industry will go next.
Which is great, in my opinion. Many of the hours I’ve spent stalking around Erangel with my friends have been the most heart-pounding intense experiences I’ve had playing video-games. Knowing that there are 99 other players out there, all aiming for the same goal, makes for an electrifying game concept. I can’t wait to see whether other developers take up Player Unknown’s mantel and see how they can riff on the idea.
If you’ve been watching any of the newer episodes of DragonBall Super, you will be aware that the series is currently in the middle of an awesome story arc. In it, the God of all existence and time, a small little guy named Zen-Oh, and his counterpart from the future, have organised a large inter-universe fighting tournament. As such, 8 different universes have formed a team of 10 fighters each, and they are all now fighting each other at the same time. 80 fighters. At the same time. It sounds ridiculous, I’ll admit, but it’s been oh-so-satisfying thus far.
So currently, there is a large Battle Royale style fight happening in one of the largest fighting-based anime series currently on television.
How on point.
But every time I turn on Crunchyroll on a Sunday morning to catch up on the latest episode, I can’t help but wish that I could play the thing too. Unfortunately with DragonBall FighterZ, the next game in long-running series of DB video games, being a 3-on-3 fighter, I can’t see the mode coming anytime soon.
However, the previous game in the franchise, DragonBall Xenoverse 2, did play like a game that theoretically could facilitate a Tournament of Power-like game mode. Stick with me here:
1. It’s an MMO-lite game. The hub world in Xenoverse 2, Conton City, can have up to 300 players running around it at any one time. 300! Admittedly, there’s no fighting allowed in that hub world, but hey once we downsize it to only 80 players, I’m sure it would work.
2. It’s third person perspective. One of the faults with any kind of Battle Royale game, is that it’s not very local co-op friendly. The whole concept relies on the faint isolation you feel when you can only control your character, going up against a horde of others doing the same. The Xenoverse games, and Budokai Tenkaichi series before it, has figured out how to put this perspective into a fighting game for a while now...
3. It’s RPG elements could help facilitate that feeling of development. One of the best parts of playing PUBG is the feeling of slowly earning more and more loot, as your character goes from shirt-less, to Tommy Gun wielding- badass. Perhaps the Xenoverse BR game could replace Frying Pan’s and Scar-H’s with capsules from Capsule Corp. Each capsule grants you a new move, whether it’s a Kamehameha, or Final Flash, or even a short time based Super Saiyan boost.
Regardless, I’m sure the upcoming Xenoverse 3 will be sure to add in some of the newer characters, such as Dr Eggman-lookalike Toppo, and certified BAMF Jiren. Considering their context is pretty much only within the Tournament of Power itself, the idea of bringing in a Battle Royale mode must have been discussed by the developers.
Or How About Something Slightly Different
The recently released Absolver by French indie developer Sloclap could also form a great foundation with which to build an OG DragonBall video game. With it’s focus on martial arts techniques, Absolver could offer a way to conceptualise a similar type of game, but located within the original DragonBall universe; one where martial arts mastery was more important that energy beams and teleportation.
Furthermore, the game has successfully been able to tie in third person hand-to-hand combat, with even a focus on teaming up with your buddies. The game has been released to some pretty positive reviews, so why not replace the masked player character from that game with a young Goku or Jackie Chun, and hey presto!
However, until Xenoverse 3 gives me the mode that I am so desperately hoping for, I suppose that I will have to make do with the upcoming DragonBall FighterZ. Which, as the new story trailer released yesterday shows, does look like a pretty good stopgap until then.
Any body else hoping for a Battle Royale mode in Xenoverse 3? Or am I jumping the gun a little, and should be more excited for FighterZ? Let’s chat in the comments!
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