Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Dragonball Z Legend of the Super Saiya-jin, Part II - Namek Saga

Legend of the Super Saiyan: Featuring Summer Glau as Freeza!

I have 99 problems, and this game is 93 of them.


After an uncomfortable space trip, the majority of which Bulma spends walking around in her underwear (no, really), Gohan lays down the law! With that, it's back to the kitchen for Bulma. The question is, why is this young man so angry at the world? If this game were my only exposure to Gohan, I would think that he's a couple years away from having his deranged emails star on a post-tragedy episode of 20/20, complete with Jon Stossel talking about which movie from The Matrix trilogy is to blame.

What happens next is an event that changes the course of history and later saves the world. Bulma complains about having to wait in the kitchen, and then...

Her useless boyfriend, the strangely not dead Yamcha, tells Bulma to sit down and flip some pancakes. The ramifications of this verbal thrust extend far into the future.

Bulma's terror quickly gives way to arousal. He may have tried to destroy Earth and been responsible for countless deaths, but at least Vegeta doesn't tell her to sit down and flip pancakes!

Gohan flies off and finds Freeza and goons (w/ hella corpses). Given that she loves mass-murderers now, maybe Bulma should date Freeza. Go on, Bulma! He's your type! Plus, his horns vibrate in four scintillating settings.

In the show, this is the most brutal scene in the whole series, as Freeza and his troops go all Avatar on the good people of Namek. In the game, it's scaled-down to a few lines and... what the? Is that Final Fantasy 4's Rydia back there? Oh, wait, it's just Zarbon. Of course, the guy on the left is Dodoria, the biggest asshole in DBZ. I really, really hate Dodoria.

Dodoria deep-throats a laser beam and kills children as the battle for Namek rages on! And by battle, I mean the most one-sided conflict since The Terminator took on The Police Station... if the police station was staffed by unarmed teddy bears.

The last survivor of the town, the adorable tot Dende, is cornered. It would be awesome if suddenly Dende just started beating the complete shit out of Dodoria.

And finally, we learn why Gohan is so angry, as he completely loses it and intervenes. I really, really hate Dodoria.

Only problem is, Dodoria is way too powerful for Gohan to defeat, so he grabs Dende and runs away with a bullet-twanging sound.

What follows is a minigame where you have to dodge Dodoria's energy blasts while escaping. I have to give this otherwise abysmal game props for including this section, but it still manages to fail to the extent that it's kinda pointless. Win or lose, the game keeps going.

Reunited, our heroes set out in search of the Dragonballs, with the goal being to find as many as possible before Freeza does. This gives the player a chance to experiment with the game mechanics before the next big battle comes along.

I may hate this game, but it does harken back to a simpler time in the early 90's. A time when the main character of every top-selling video game wasn't a floating gun. A time when "experiment" meant something besides "fool around with a similar-gendered person in college".

At this point a pair of Namekians join the party. They were promised two and a half cans of Four Loko and the latest Insane Clown Posse CD, and we're going to have a problem if they discover that Gohan can't deliver. Juggalos may forgive, but they NEVER FORGET!

They have impressive power levels at this point and actually outgun my other characters. This would be even radder if it lasted longer than the next five minutes! Because, you see, they can't get any more powerful... while the other characters suddenly gain like 200 power level a minute because Deus Ex Machina requires it.

Next up is a cave. The enemies in here give huge amounts of experience, and it's wise to spend a few minutes in here fighting everything. ...wait, why am I giving gameplay advice? DON'T EVER PLAY THIS GAME. RUN AWAY!

At the end of the cave is one of the Dragonballs. But the news isn't all good, because grabbing this means that as soon as you leave the cave you get attacked by a boss. So woe to those who save at this point without building up first. Who is this fearsome boss, you ask?

...why, it's Kui, the purple penis monster. He's after our dragonball because he's trying to get some points with his boss, Freeza. Now, intrepid series fans may be aware that in the show, Kui runs into the newly-renegade Vegeta before this could ever happen and that fight results in a very dead Kui. Not so much in the game, as Earth's Special Forces get to take on Kui this time. But wait! There's a Vegeta card that you get after landing on Namek, and it summons Vegeta to help you out for a battle. Aside from making no sense whatsoever, this is a hell of a card - provided you don't use it for a random fight just to see what it does. Vegeta, needless to say, kicks the crap out of Kui. However, I knew that a considerably tougher fight was right over the horizon, so I didn't summon Vegeta just yet.

Gohan goes toe to toe with the nefarious penis monster! Let that juvenile rage go, Gohan!

Gohan puts a little extra 'tude into this Masenko. This was the only attack that really did substantial damage to Kui. Four of these put him down. For the most part, the other characters just stayed back out of the fight and toasted to their own uselessness.

And here's Dodoria, a mere few minutes later. I really hate Dodoria. He's brimming with confidence that he built up from killing all those helpless Namekians, which is kinda like building up your lovemaking confidence by making love to your hand.

Time to summon... Vegeta! It's good to have Vegeta on our side for a change. This is also how Vegeta makes love. He can only do it in a room with no ceiling, and the woman needs to wear armor or at least heavy padding. Truth is, neither Gokou or Vegeta will ever romantically bed a woman on a magic carpet while "A Whole New World" plays.

It's worth noting that Vegeta is now Twenty Raditz.

MY GOD MAN, can Dodoria stop killing Namekians for one minute?

Gohan employs some hit-and-run tactics as Dodoria gives chase. Okay, Dodoria really just waddles slowly, and there are no tactics in this infernal game.

Vegeta is the one who does all the damage in this fight, of course, culminating with a thunderous Gallick Gun!

BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM! TAKE THAT, DODORIA!

I really, really hate Dodoria.

"Go Saiyans, bitch!" says Vegeta when reached for comment.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch... Bulma is sitting around being bored. I wonder what she does all day while our heroes are out saving the world. I think I know what she does. The same thing all hot women do when they're alone and bored... sometimes three or four times in a day.

Of course, I'm referring to watching old episodes of All My Children. When will Susan Lucci break the curse? When damn it! Wait, that happened, you say? Oh. Cool.

The king of being fashionably late, Gokou, is on his way to Namek. However, if he wants to be of any real help to the other heroes, he must train Rocky IV style, set to "No Easy Way Out".

Freeza will pay for killing Apollo Creed!

DUN-DUNNN! DUN DUN DUN DUDUDUDUN! DUN-DUNNNN! DUN DUN DUN DUDUDUDUN!

DUN-DUNNN! THERE'S NO EASY WAY OUUUUT!

 DUN-DUNNNN! THERE'S NO SHORTCUT HOOOOME!

Meanwhile, Piccolo is on King Kai's planet undergoing the same rigorous training that Gokou went through earlier. Not only is death a mere speed bump in the DBZ world, it also allows you to get super-powerful!

For his final challenge, Piccolo must defeat both Nappa and Raditz. How did they get here? Who knows. Interesting. This will surely be a pitched battle, as Piccolo avenges his own death against Nappa. THERE'S NO EASY, NO EASY WAY OUUUUT!

Yep, this will be quite the battle. It could go either way... you know, I can't take this game seriously when everyone you fight in the game stands like they're trying to give birth mid-fight.

Whoa. Piccolo just one-shotted Raditz... and with the same move as before! That's one down...

ZAPOW! The tables have turned! If only Piccolo had ALSO been killed by Raditz and gone to Kai's planet sooner. Vegeta and Nappa wouldn't have had a chance! ...course, Raditz would have also wiped out everyone on Earth since no one would have been left to stop him.

...and, uh...wow, it's over. That was quick and anticlimactic, much like Gokou's wedding night. "I put it where? Okay! Yikes! Wow! ....That felt really good, Chi Chi! Now I'm hungry!"

Meanwhile, on Namek... Vegeta runs into Zarbon, the space version of former Chicago Bull Dennis Rodman.

Of course, they then engage in a dance-off. "Let's see you DAAAANCE, SUCKA, YOU GOT NOTHIN' ON ME" says Vegeta while Run DMC plays.

Before long, Zarbon defeats the overconfident Vegeta. For now. Zarbon then goes back to being glad that Bulma isn't walking around in her underwear anymore. "Because nooobody wants to see THAT" he says.

Meanwhile, the only woman on the planet (besides, debatably, adorable children's action figure Chaozu) gets some screen time so she can whine. Whining isn't going to defeat Freeza, bro!

After this quick check-in, our heroes take off to find some more Dragonballs. They need all of them to revive Piccolo, who suddenly has a massive power level despite only doing the same training regimen that Gokou did previously.

This may be a good time for me to note the origin of the phrase "Deus Ex Machina". Ancient Greece was well known for their cutting-edge plays. And when the plot of a play called for an event that didn't have a legitimate explanation, they would wheel a metal statue of God out onto the stage and have him magically change the story. This was called God as a Machine, or Deus Ex Machina. Later, Deus Ex Machina was unearthed and got a job with the DBZ writing staff.

Gohan finds one of the balls. How it sparkles!

Lots and lots of Saibamen attack as our heroes slog their way across Namek. Note: The translation of the game that I played was incomplete and tremendously mediocre. It's something, though, and I'm glad I could read any of it.

En route to Guru's house, our heroes have to traverse a cave. Why can't we just fly over it? Does the mountain go all the way up to space? Worse still, the cave is inhabited by a green fairy that won't let us pass and sends us on a fetch quest to another cave. No word on whether or not this is the green fairy from all the absinthe bottles, but chances are the game designers were doing some absinthe when they came up with this.

Gohan doesn't understand what the deal is with the clitoris. Don't ask your father, Gohan, because he doesn't know either.

Good call, Dende! It might attack!

Back at the fairy... okay, let me explain this a bit. The fairy sent our heroes to another cave that had a switch. However, they weren't supposed to fool with it. They found it, did nothing, and returned to the fairy, who let the crew pass. I guess since they showed proper respect for Namekian switches? Honestly, this whole deal made zero sense whatsoever.

Our heroes find Nail, the most powerful Namekian on Planet Namek. But there are two of him! Which one do we attack? WHICH ONE DAMMIT?

They attack the bad Nail and a battle ensues. It isn't very difficult, given how powerful the guy is supposed to be.

Plus, the real Nail joins the party at this point and helps defeat his twin. Good, we were lacking a Piccolo.

Ah, he was battling his own mirror image for fun and profit. Now it makes sense. Sorry, broski.

And we arrive at Guru's House, which is presumably the most happenin' bachelor pad on Namek. Guru got things rocking up in here! The house be jumpin' cause the party is off tha heezy. Can I get a Wooo Wooo!

...well, apparently I was misinformed. I was told there was a party? Never mind.

Guru proceeds to power up our heroes. That explains why Nail is so badass. It also begs the question of why all the Namek warriors didn't fly over here and get beefed up once Freeza and company arrived and started wiping out their race. I guess this poweruppage is only used in DIRE circumstances.

Leaving Guru's not-so-hopping-as-it-turns-out house, our heroes run smack into the Prince of the Saiyans, the loose cannon himself. He's all set to mug them when...

Freeza's remaining henchman, Zarbon, shows up, also looking for some balls. He didn't finish Vegeta after all, but he aims to rectify his mistake by giving the prince a good pounding.

Vegeta joins up with the rest of my characters and the battle ensues! Zarbon is more powerful than Dodoria, but not by much, and the good guys quickly run him over.

Tien gets a shot in! It's crazy having all these characters on Namek who were dead by this point in the show. Personally, I always felt like Tien deserved to be a useful player on the show for a lot longer than he was.

And now the REAL fight begins, as Zarbon transforms and reaches a power level unlike anything we've fought up to now. I always wondered why Zarbon wasn't on the Ginyu Force. He may not be at as high of a level as 80% of the group, but he's way more powerful than Guldo.

Vegeta does the bulk of the fighting here, since most of my characters aren't powerful enough to hang with Zarbon at full strength.

I finally use up my leftover Yajirobe summon from back on Earth, and the Yaj-ster gets a shot in for zero damage. Comedy gold!

Vegeta gets the final strike. With that, Freeza is fresh out of goons. Luckily for us that despite his power, Freeza is incredibly lazy and cannot function without goons... so he's temporarily incapacitated.

Vegeta is impressed by Gohan and Co, and finally joins the group. He's a huge help at this point, but he has a tendency to do his own thing and not follow commands during battles. This very quickly drains the coolness out of having him on the team and turns it into frustration.

Our heroes return to Bulma, with Vegeta in tow. And just like that, sparks fly.

"!!!"

"....."

More on this story as it develops.

Read Part 1 HERE

Read Part 3 HERE

5 comments:

  1. "If this game were my only exposure to Gohan, I would think that he's a couple years away from having his deranged emails star on a post-tragedy episode of 20/20, complete with Jon Stossel talking about which movie from The Matrix trilogy is to blame."

    I don't say this very often, but you've completely lost me.

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  2. Well, Dende is the third strongest Namekian, so maybe he has a chance..

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  3. At least Tien gets a lot of screen-time during the Android/Cell arc. He can't fight worth a damn (though he did help... once) but he's got your back.

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  4. "I always wondered why Zarbon wasn't on the Ginyu Force. He may not be at as high of a level as 80% of the group, but he's way more powerful than Guldo."

    They needed someone really short. Don't forget the importance they place on style.

    ReplyDelete