Friday, April 11, 2014

Dragonball Z: Buyu Retsuden (Sega Megadrive, 1994)

 Today I'm looking at the Genesis addition to the Super Butoden series, dubbed Retsuden. This one plays largely the same, but the graphic and sound styles are quite different. It covers up through the Cell Saga.

 Aside from the now-standard Gokou/Gohan/Trunks/Vegeta/Piccolo, this game features Kuririn and a bunch of selectable villains. Captain Ginyu and Recoome are perhaps the coolest additions. Wonder why Recoome got picked over the other three Non-Captains. Still no Android #17. Who did he piss off?

Of course, the title screen is still dominated by Giant Gokou Head, in case any of us forget just whose show this is.

In a pretty rad touch, each character has their own specific final boss. Vegeta's is, naturally, Gokou.

Gohan's final battle is against Perfect Cell, the biggest bad in this game, making Gohan the best candidate for a story mode.

 But wait! You can also play as Kuririn! FINALLY! His last battle is against his future wife, Android #18. Yeah, he marries an Android. I think she has his child, too. Don't ask how that works, because I have no idea. DBZ!

Other playable characters include Freeza. For the most part, the story modes for the villains are quite barebones. You just see them standing around yapping, then they get into various battles.

 Freeza's first fight is against Kuririn. His offense is largely tail-based. Freeza, not Kuririn. Though Kuririn's wife has some offense you might call tail-based. HEYO.

 Cell also stands around during his story mode.

But wait! There's a bit of flying, too. Oddly enough, Imperfect Cell is seen in cutscenes but isn't playable in this one.

 Going with Kuririn now. His first fight is Recoome. Actually, Recoome has the unfortunate task of being the first opponent for nearly all of the "good guys". Aside from Trunks, I guess.

By the way... his name? It rhymes with Doom.

Alas, it is Recoome's balls which find themselves hurting all too soon, as Kuririn ends the soliloquy with a swift punt.

 A surprisingly tough fight. The difficulty level is better in this game than in the SNES ones, which tended to be either too hard or too easy. In this game the fights are very winnable, but they make you work for it.

Next Kuririn finds himself with a reach disadvantage against the nefarious Captain Ginyu. It's worth pointing out that the collision / hit detection in this game is dicey. Very often I'd land what I thought were hits and they'd go right through the enemy. Which goes both ways; there's a chance Ginyu's kick here didn't even affect Kuririn. It's a bit annoying at times.

 Other times, attacks reach that don't really look like they should. It's pretty odd, and shows that DBZ games in 1994 still have a long way to go to be respectable fighting games.

Here's a big grudge match. Kuririn Vs. Freeza. Unlike the show, Kuririn has a chance here. More than that, you can completely trounce Freeza.

...if he doesn't SHOOT YOU IN THE HEAD with his bastardly point-beam, that is.

 WHAM! The animation in this game is more appealing than the SNES games, at least earlier on. Looks more like the cartoon, while the SNES games look a little bit plastic.

Kuririn dishes out a Kamehameha wave! Unfortunately the beam attacks in this game are somewhat lacking. They're all the same color and they're not as bright as they usually are.

Kuririn OBLITERATES Freeza. That felt good, at least.

 Next up, Kuririn travels to the Room of Spirit and Time to do battle with...

 ...Piccolo? Weird to see Kuririn in this setting.

The shorter-powers explode! I have fond memories of less-blonde Gohan and Kuririn tearing things up on Namek.

 Kuririn fights his best friend, the sociopathic Gokou. Ya know, Gokou may be an awful hero in a lot of ways, but he's still pretty awesome to watch in action.

 Kuririn's final battle is against Android #18, who must be a member of Cobra Kai because she immediately SWEEPS THE LEG. No! You'll kill him!

 After a pitched battle, they live happily ever after and have kids. Somehow.

 Behold Kuririn's overwhelming joy.

 Unfortunately, Gohan's afraid he has some bad news. Being married to Android #18 means that Kuririn will finally have to talk to a girl.

Let's see Gohan's game. Like all the good guys, he gets Recoome first. Funny how Gohan is Super Saiyan 2 no matter where he is in story mode. These games wouldn't start giving multiple forms to characters for a long time.

Captain Ginyu is a really cool character, too bad he's permanently second-fiddle to Freeza. He could have been a Big Bad in his own saga.

 Speaking of Freeza, here he is doing his best Psycho Mantis impression. They did a good job making all of the characters equal in this game. Actually, I had a slightly easier time playing as Kuririn than Gohan.

Neon Blue Vegeta is an opponent in this mode for some reason. Can't remember Gohan and Vegeta ever having any kind of confrontation in the Cell Saga... they need padding for story mode, I suppose.

I found that a particularly good way to beat the computer in this game is to lure them back to a corner and turtle up, then counterattack low. It's cheap but effective.

 Gohan's second-to-last fight is also Gokou. He's like the Goro of this game.

The final battle is the greatest fight in the series, Gohan Vs. Cell. Just did this in two other games, but this time it's on a system with BLAST PROCESSING~!

Cell has the longest life meter in the game, unsurprisingly. He's also the toughest opponent in every regard.

 It was quite a battle.

 At the end Gohan is all surprised at his own strength, Piccolo is ashamed for making Cell so hard to kill with his magical regenerating earthworm DNA, and Gokou is very creepily looking on while slowly toking a doobie in celebration of not being dead.

In other news, saw this a while back. The PS4's power is all well and good, but if only developers would start showing some faith in the system and develop some exclusives for it.


  1. Vegeta kinda fought Gohan for a bit back on Earth after Freeza and Gokou were both supposedly dead.

    Too bad that PS3-PS4 picture doesn't go backwards and have a single Gerudo presenting the PS1.

  2. Having a different storymode for every character to let them each be the star of his own story is rad. Also think it's hilarious that the bad guy stories are just them standing around boasting and fighting. I mean, imagine how boring it must be to be a dungeon boss guarding a treasure. Maybe bad guys look for fights because they're lonely.