Top 5 Bandai-Namco Published Games

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Time for a game of “Spot the Super Sentai reference”!

Who loves Pac-Man? Who loves Dig-Dug? Who loves a ton of awesome Japanese games only 5 people have played? That would be me! I’m a huge fan of the game company known as “Bandai-Namco”. They’ve produced countless good games over the years, some of which are my personal favorites! So, I thought that it would be a good idea to tackle a top 5 list of my favorite Bandai-Namco games. Now, please keep in mind that Bandai-Namco is a game publisher, not a developer. All the games that will be listed here were made by other developers.

Still, the games that are published by Bandai-Namco tend to be really awesome. They are one of the few publishers that hasn’t really gone off the deep end, and one of the few that continue to publish really good games. While Namco themselves used to make a lot of games, I wouldn’t be including those here. I will most likely do a separate list for Namco games, if I ever get around to playing them, that is. I’ve only ever played a couple. So yeah, let’s get into this list!

5. Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth

It’s hard to put into words how much I enjoyed this game! Cyber Sleuth is a turn-based RPG spinoff of the classic Digimon franchise. It plays a lot like the Pokemon games, though it does some unique things. It has a fun story, that sadly falls apart halfway through. Still, it’s definitely entertaining!

While the game is certainly a grind, it packs a ton of punch. It has over 300 different Digimon to collect, and writing that pays homage to various parts of the series. The game also sports some nice graphics for a Vita game, and manages to capture the original designs of the Digimon well. What stops me from putting this game higher on the list is the aforementioned somewhat weak story, coupled with the boring and annoying dungeon design, and constant grinding. Still, this is a solid and fun game that I think any hardcore Digimon fan can get behind.

4. Chroma Squad

I’ll be completely honest with you guys, I’m not the biggest fan of Power Rangers out there. Sure, I loved it back in the 90s and early 2000s, but haven’t really watched the show since. Still, when I heard about this little tactical RPG that takes elements from Power Rangers and Kamen Rider, I found myself intrigued. So, I decided to grab this game and was glad I did!

This little Indie game named Chroma Squad is made by the guys behind “Knights of Pen and Paper 1” and it’s somehow even better than that game! This is a game that combines simulation elements with strategy RPG elements, and puts a Power Rangers spin on it. The game is fun, albeit short.

On top of this, some of the more ridiculous elements tend to water down the game’s already silly narrative. Still, this is definitely a fun game, and it’s art-style reminds me a lot of older games such as Habbo Hotel. I feel fourth place is definitely a good place for Chroma Squad. It’s an extremely fun game, but I wouldn’t feel right putting it above the next three. This game is an awesome homage to Power Rangers, but isn’t anything too spectacular.

3. God Eater Resurrection

I’ve made it no secret I love God Eater. The original game on the PSP was a fantastic little gem, that unfortunately did not get a lot of attention. However, it was eventually remade and released on both PS Vita and other consoles. God Eater Resurrection is a damn fine game that adds so many refinements and modifications to an already strong formula.

This is a game that’s essentially a Monster Hunter clone, but adds in things such as enhanced maneuverability and better customization options. Heck, you can even make your own custom bullets in this game! This game also packs a ton of quests and missions into one cheap little package. That’s right, the Vita version was only 20 bucks!

It has such good value for its cheap price. In fact, if it wasn’t such a steal, I probably wouldn’t have bought it! It’s got a ton of new content and improvements, but at its core it it is the same game. With a new story mode, a newer and much more improved English, and several new weapon types, I can say that there is still a lot here for people who played the original game.

I’ve gushed about this game, but it does have problems. Some rather glaring flaws that made me push it further back on the list. For one thing, there no optional Japanese voice-acting option. Now, this is more of a nitpick, but it’s something that does annoy me. When I replay games, I tend to try the other language options, so I get a slightly different experience when I play through it the second time. Sadly, this game does not allow for that.

Couple this was constantly reused monsters, a lack of new creatures, some bits of awkward voice-acting here and there, and a somewhat underwhelming mutliplayer experience, and you have a game that misses the mark on occasion. Still, there’s enough good here that it out-weighs its negative features.

2. Solatorobo: Red The Hunter

I know what you’re thinking: “I’ve never heard of this game before! Why is it on the list?” I’ll tell you why: It’s awesome, unique and interesting! Ever wonder what would happen if Sherlock Hound was a video-game and had giant robots in it? That’s pretty much this game in a nut-shell! You play as a “Hunter” named Red, who is a dog-like being in a world filled with anthropomorphic felines and canines.

After a job goes awry, Red ends up saddled with a mysterious child named Elh. It’s up to Red, his sister Chocolat, and Elh to save the world from 2 different impending disasters. That’s right, two! For you see, much like an anime multiple story arc, the game is split into two parts. Even the second story arc introduces enough new things to keep the experience fresh.

The game’s combat, story, graphics, music, and characters are what elevated this game so high on the list. Here we have a game with a good story and a ton of rich lore, and manages to link back to an equally obscure game called “Tail Concerto”. That’s right, Solatorobo is a shared universe, but you don’t need to play the other games to get it. It is its own story, and a damn good one at that!

Playing this for the first time, I had inklings of what would happen. However, when I reached the end of both story arcs, I was pleasantly surprised! The gameplay is no slouch either, as it introduces a mechanic that lets you throw enemies at other. In fact, most of your time in combat will be spent picking up enemies and tossing them at each other. I always loved this style of combat, and it makes for some refreshing and inventive battles.

With all the good this game has, how come nobody ever talks about it? Well, this game does have a few glaring issues. For one thing, most of its side-quests are superfluous and pointless. The game also forces you to do a large majority of them if you want to progress in the main plot. On top of this, some boss battles are bit on the underwhelming side. The game likes to toss you against a blimp boss a lot, where you have to throw the rockets he fires back at him. That’s whole fight by the way, and there’s little permutations each time you do this.

Also, the game was not marketed well. Despite getting a whopping 100 commercials and airing them all in Japan, the game still flopped hard in its native country. On top of this, Bamco didn’t really advertise this game at all in America or other countries. As a result, it barely sold well at all. Nowadays, the game is hard to find and rare, mostly because nobody really bought it.

It’s really sad, honestly. This is a game that was made with more polish than modern games would get. Yet… Nobody played it. That’s why I feel so comfortable about putting this game so high. This isn’t a game that brings too many new things to the table, but it’s still a fun action RPG with an entertaining and somewhat dark plot. The game may be difficult to find, but if you can get it used I highly recommend you do!

1. Dragon Ball Fusions

People may wonder why I chose Fusions over Xenoverse, which I claimed was a superior game in a previous top 5 list. Well, for one thing I’ve felt I have been talking about Xenoverse way too much lately. On top of this, while I think Xenoverse is a superior game, I had more fun with Fusions. Dragon Ball Fusions is a unique beast, as it is a Dragon Ball video-game with monster collecting elements.

This game does not focus on Goku, but on your own player this time. Goku’s there, but he’s a side character. That’s what I enjoyed so much about this game, is that it feels like your story. All the other Dragon Ball heroes are just along for the ride. The problem with Dragon Ball games (especially Xenoverse) is that it never feels like your own story. This time, they changed it up and made it a lot more refreshing.

On top of this, the game also has a unique turn-based strategy RPG play-style. It’s difficult to describe how this game plays, it’s like an RPG meets a pinball game! That’s a bit of an exaggerated comparison, but I find it difficult to fully explain how this game plays. It meshes so many unique elements and manages to be extremely refreshing.

The game’s customization is its strongest point. You can customize how your character looks in so many ways, even choose the colors of each individual outfit piece. You can choose from five distinct races with enough options to make a character that truly suits you. Sure, the choices aren’t infinite or as robust as Xenoverse, but there’s definitely a good variety.

The game also has a stellar soundtrack and fantastic visuals, especially for a handheld game. I honestly love this game, way more than other game on the list. Despite this, I can still acknowledge its flaws. Battles are way too slow and can often take 15 minutes to half an hour if you aren’t careful. This game is also very grind-heavy at times. On top of this, the game’s unique “EX Fusion” system is cumbersome, despite it being one of the most fun parts of the game. It takes forever to defuse characters, and some of the requirements to get certain fusions is downright insane.

For example, to even fuse Cell with yourself, you have to complete all 16 quizzes. This requires you to complete a lot of busywork and will most assuredly take you a month of real-life time in order to pull it off. Sadly, a lot of fusions are like this. The game’s worst aspect though is the online multiplayer, which was patched in later.

It’s horribly unbalanced, and it’s possible to lose in just a few turns if your team isn’t overpowered as all hell. The best way to describe it is that its like a game of Chess, but with as many variables as a tabletop RPG. It’s insane, and it definitely sucks a fair bit of fun out of the game. It’s also impossible to find a forum where people aren’t complaining about this tacked-on feature.

Regardless, I don’t think you’ll find a more refreshing and accessible modern strategy RPG. Despite the fact that its mostly geared towards a younger audience, I think any hardcore Dragon Ball fan can get some enjoyment out of it. It’s a game that really shows what Bandai-Namco is capable of as a a publisher.

In Summation

That’s my list of my top favorite Bamco games! Keep in mind that while I am a massive fan of Bandai-Namco, I do acknowledge that they have faults. Their handling of Dokkan Battle was less than stellar at times, and bordered on feeling like a bit of ripoff at times. While I do enjoy their work, they are by no means a perfect company. Regardless, I’ll keep buying their games because I am wildly supportive of what they do.

So, what’s your favorite Bamco games? Feel free to tell me in the comment section! If you guys have any suggestions for specific types of top 5 lists you’d like to see, let me know below. Have a good day and keep it as sweet as syrup!

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Top 5 Dragon Ball Games

I know I talk about Dragon Ball a lot, but lately I’ve found myself getting more involved in the series. The quality of material the franchise is churning out is fantastic! It’s surprising considering how old the series is. This is a series that has lasted over 30 years, and is still receiving new shows, manga, and movies. Today though, I want to discuss the Dragon Ball games.

There are over 100 Dragon Ball games in existence, with new ones being churned out on a yearly basis. With such a constant stream of Dragon Ball video-game content, I felt it was time to discuss what my favorite entries in the series are. I’ve narrowed it down to five games specifically. I’m sticking with 5, because I haven’t played that many Dragon Ball games. I’ve played several, but I’ve missed out on some of the really big ones. Without further adieu, let’s get started!

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It really does.

 

Honorable Mention: Dragon Ball Online

Dragon Ball Online is of a rare breed: A Korean MMORPG that I actually enjoy quite a bit! DBO is a game with its own unique plot and setting, wrapped up in an MMO package. With three different races to play, and a variety of different lands to explore, DBO definitely feels like a large and fulfilling experience. However, I find it impossible to place on this list.

For one thing, I played this game on a private server. This particular server was in beta, so the translation wasn’t finished. It’s hard for me to play a game who’s plot and story I couldn’t fully understand in the top 5. Also, this game still has quite a bit of bugs and glitches. Once the server is fully finished, I may add it to the top 5. Still, for now I feel comfortable enough to place it as an honorable mention.

5. Dragon Ball Z Budokai 1 (2002)

While I’m not usually a fan of 2D fighters, I gotta say that I love DBZ Budokai! This game was my childhood, it was one of the few games that really captured the feeling of the show at that time. I remember this game shipping while the English dub was still in mid-broadcast, so characters we hadn’t seen yet (like Great Saiyaman) showed up in the game. So, what is this game exactly?

Well, it’s a 2D fighting game, featuring story arcs from the show that are recreated in 3D. The game’s beautiful (for the time) graphics mixed with its action-packed gameplay were certainly things to behold. Of course, Budokai 1 is not without its problems. The fighting itself can feel bland at times, especially when you have to do unnecessary combos just to pull off a special attack.

On top of this, the game hits some huge difficulty spikes halfway through. While the “What If” stories are definitely a welcome addition to this game, they aren’t as fleshed out as the ones that appear in Xenoverse. On top of this, the game’s graphics have not aged super well. Still, I can definitely say that I have fun with this game and continue to do so. Unfortunately, the game’s flaws keep me from putting it higher on the list.

4. Dragon Ball: Z Legacy of Goku II (2003)

Let’s be real here, the first Legacy of Goku was a train-wreck. It had a ton of flaws, including limiting the player only playing as Goku, having a cumbersome combat system, having even the weakest enemies able overpower you, not to mention the awkward full-motion video. Legacy of Goku was a mess, an attempt by an American company to create a cheap cash-in on a beloved series.

Despite this, the game sold like hotcakes. Not only that, but a sequel was churned out just a year later! Legacy of Goku II was nothing like the game that came before it, Webfoot Technologies definitely learned from their mistakes. The combat has been vastly improved, there are now multiple playable characters, you could now charge your melee attacks, you could now transform into a Super Saiyan, along with various other improvements.

Legacy of Goku II felt like a true improvement over its predecessor. Not only that, but it covered the Cell Saga, which was one of my favorites! The game certainly has problems, such as the graphics engine not having changed all that much, and the fact that you barely play as Goku at all, but the good far out-weigh the bad. I think this is an action RPG that anyone can get behind.

3. Dragon Ball Z Budokai Tenkaichi 3

It’s hard to put into words how much I love BT3, but I’ll try. This is a Dragon Ball game that really gets crazy, especially when compared to those that came before! BT3 is a fully 3D fighting game, with over 150 different characters. You heard me, over 150! There are so many choices when it comes to the kind of character you want to play as. Almost every Dragon Ball character that existed was playable in the game. Of course, there are exceptions to this.  A fair amount of characters from the original show are noticeably absent.

Still, the roster is massive enough to make up for this. BT3’s large roster of characters isn’t its only draw, you can also create custom move-sets for each individual character! Not enough for you? The game also offers a story mode, covering each individual arc. Heck, even the movies and GT get their own arcs in this game! The game is truly all-encompassing when it comes to the amount of things there is in it.

As awesome as this game is, it does have its fair share of weaknesses. Most characters have a tendency to play exactly the same as each other. This comes down to the absurdly large roster this game touts. Also, most of the characters are horribly unbalanced. I can’t really picture BT3 being played at tournaments all that much.

That being said, I still greatly enjoy BT3. You may be wondering why BT3 is only the third spot of this top 5 list. This is mainly due to the fact that I feel the next two games greatly surpass it in terms of both customization and things to do. As much as I love this game, it pales in comparison to these next two entries.

2. Dragon Ball Fusions (2016)

Imagine a game where you can create your Dragon Ball character, send them into a mismatched world filled with other such characters, and fuse with anyone you want to become stronger. This is Dragon Ball Fusions in a nutshell! Dragon Ball Fusions is a game that not only lets you create your own character, but also explore a series of large open areas. Here, you participate in the story, level up, and recruit new characters to join you.

Including fusions, there are over 1000 different characters you can get! The free DLC adds even more characters to the game, allowing for further party customization. Couple this with a character you can customize to your heart’s content, fun gameplay that manages to combine elements of pinball with strategy, and fun tongue-in-cheek writing, and you have a charming little RPG that is begging to be played.

Fusions manages to take characters from all over the Dragon Ball franchise and present them in an entertaining and fresh way. DBF is a fantastic game, but it is also a flawed one. Online multiplayer is horribly unbalanced and lag-filled, the story is too short and not detailed well enough, and some side-quests (like the ones requiring you to fly through hoops) feel very tacked on.

To be fair, I wasn’t really expecting perfection from a children’s game anyways. This is a super easy game, but it was something I got a massive amount of enjoyment out of. It’s one of those few Dragon Ball games that I can easily say feels wholly unique. That being said, there is 1 Dragon Ball game that I feel outclasses it in a lot of ways. And that game is…

1. Dragon Ball Xenoverse 1 (2015)

Despite the dumb and rather nonsense name, I feel like Xenoverse is one of the best Dragon Ball games ever! I still have yet to play its much better sequel, but I definitely enjoyed my time with this first iteration. Imagine a Dragon Ball game that is part fighting game, part MMORPG, and part action RPG. Xenoverse blends these elements together and manages to make them feel unique.

Xenoverse lets you customize your characters to an insane degree, far outclassing even Fusions in what you can create. On top of this, there is so many things you can equip your character with to change his look. The fighting system is definitely fun as well, albeit a tad bit unbalanced. Xenoverse also present an entertaining “What If” story mode, filled with all kinds of fun and entertaining stories.

It’s not a perfect game by any stretch of the imagination. You can beat the story mode in a few hours if you know what you’re doing, and some of the side-quests are brutally difficult for no reason. Still, this game’s sizable roster, character creation system, and fun game-play make up for its shortcomings. This game isn’t a masterpiece, and I doubt it ever will be. Still, it’s a solid action RPG that kept me engaged for 33 hours so far! That’s why I can definitely say this game is deserving of the number 1 spot!