Unleash your inner Saiyan!
It wouldn’t be a trip to the Electronics and Entertainment Expo without a stop to the Bandai Namco booth. They’re known for their anime properties as well as some surprises and they didn’t disappoint.
The first game I was able to get hands on time with was the new Dragon Ball Z game that Bandai Namco is developing, DBZ: Kakarot. Those who aren’t aware, Kakarot is Goku’s Saiyan name. The plays like an action role-playing game where you have an area to traverse in and gather items and attack enemies that get in your way. One might consider it to be open world but that isn’t the case as Bandai Namco felt that wouldn’t be true to the anime. You follow events that occurred in the series like in the demo you have to rescue Goku’s son, Gohan, from his alien brother who happens to be invading Earth. You’ll also be able to fight, fish, and attack dinosaurs that get in your way and that’s pretty damn cool! There are also side quests/interactions that you can take on with familiar characters from the series. They may ask you to help find supplies in the town or something on those lines. The fighting controls are pretty straightforward, since the commands are linked to the shoulder buttons on the controller. You have your basic attacks and then you have your combo attacks but you also have the ability to shield the enemy attacks. That will become key when the enemies become super strong and you don’t have that many healing items. You’ll take on the role of Goku in the Dragon Ball Z story and see how things play out in his role so be the best Goku you can be!
Next up was a date with Rad, a game where you’ll be dealing with anything farther from rad! The world is in disrepair and are you up to the challenge to survive? There are all kinds of things that are trying to get you in the post-apocalyptic world. It’s ok though, you have a Baseball bat that you can use to attack the various vermin that’s coming after you, problem solved right? You’ll have to make your way into the Fallow to find out what’s going on in the world as well as save it. One of the cooler features in the game is while playing your character will mutate and gain new powers and abilities. During the demo, I was able to grow dinosaur-like legs and lay eggs that hatched little versions of me! You’ll also be able to find money and floppy disc looking things throughout the Fallow that can be used to buy and unlock things. The disc was used as a key to unlock health in a semi-boss fight. Rad launched in Aug so get ready to save the world then!
After that it was on to Code Vein, an anime-style role-playing game with a darker feel. The demo allowed you to skip the level and go right to the boss but Bandai Namco advised you level up your characters first and they were right. At the start of the demo, the fighting isn’t too tough and you can use the same few attacks over and over again. However, once you got a little further into the level, you were keeping an eye out for the larger monsters and healing like crazy. You had your choice of three support characters but you were going to be using your healing items regardless. You’ll also be able to use combo/charged attacks in combat but make sure you level up as you will need to be at a high level if you expect to succeed in this game.
Lastly, I was able to sit down with The Dark Pictures: Man of Medan which reminded me of a survival horror game splashed with a “choose your own adventure” book. An interesting concept in this game is that every character has the ability to survive or perish by your hands. Your actions have consequences and how you decide to answer each “quicktime/flashtime” like minigame will determine the fate of the characters. For example, you need to get off the ship in the game and without giving away too much, you’ll need to first decide if escaping is the right answer and then do it without messing up the commands. Messing up could cost another person their life as well as being a smart-ass in answering questions that could come up. It’s a pick your own adventure book in that regard as you’re picking your own path and your decisions have results you’ll have to deal with. In that same regard, one could come to the survivor horror conclusion as well for this game!
It looks like Bandai Namco has quite a lot coming out in the coming year and fans of all genres will have something to get excited about!