Akira Toriyama’s Dragon Ball franchise has had countless games over its long history. Most of these simply retell the main story seen in the manga and anime. Frankly, this has gotten really repetitive. That’s why certain titles take the chance to do something different.
Of course, some are more daring than others. Works like Xenoverse mostly follow the established canon with minor adjustments. Other entries, however, go all-out with the craziness, coming up with completely new tales about these iconic characters. Even the most fantastical fan fiction pales in comparison to the stuff in these games, and such gleeful insanity should be celebrated by Dragon Ball devotees the world over.
10 Cell Absorbs Krillin – Dragon Ball Z: Budokai
Not only did Dragon Ball Z: Budokai‘s extensive Story Mode cover the canon narrative, but it also took players through several smaller tales. These basically gave each villain a tremendous power trip. Sadly, Cell draws the short straw here.
His What-If chapter sees him try to absorb the androids. Things go well until he accidentally sucks up Krillin, turning him into a pint-sized punk. His short fuse makes him a funny little troll, but he’s promptly beaten by Tien and Yamcha. As ridiculous as it sounds, this farce could fit into the mainline story. After all, it’s revealed to be a nightmare Cell has while waiting for his tournament to start.
9 The Vegeta Force – Dragon Ball: Raging Blast
It’s no secret that the Ginyu Force is a pack of sycophants. That’s why their revolt here is so surprising. Fed up with Captain Ginyu’s tough training, the rest of the team rebels against him. Although this eventually fails, it does diminish what little morale they had left.
Enter Vegeta, who feels a weakling like Ginyu shouldn’t act so high and mighty. During their battle, the humbled members cheer the Saiyan on against their former boss. They eventually nominate him to take over the captain’s spot. Thankfully, the first thing he does is get rid of the flamboyant poses. Thus, the Vegeta Force was born.
8 Majin Frieza And Cell – Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2
The sad thing is that these two villains would have been better bets for Babidi’s side in the show. Compared to losers like Pui Pui, Yakon, Spopovich, and Yamu, these guys are like titans.
7 The Legend Of Hercule – Dragon Ball Z: Budokai
What if Hercule/Mr. Satan really did save the world from Cell? Well, the first Budokai game answers that question with this alternate mode. In The Legend of Hercule, the World Champion fights through all of the Z-fighters, taking each of them out with his seemingly godlike power. Some of these bouts have hilarious handicaps, such as a time limit so that the clownish combatant can use the restroom.
Despite these hiccups, it all culminates in a climactic battle with the insectoid android himself. Defeating him on live TV solidifies Hercule’s savior status. Truly, he is the greatest hero to ever walk the Earth.
6 Gotenks Beats Everyone – Dragon Ball Z: Supersonic Warriors
This fused fighter’s story seems to start in familiar fashion. He fights Buu in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber, and Buu rips a hole in space and time to escape. Like many tales in Supersonic Warriors, however, the narrative soon goes off the rails.
Gotenks tries the same technique, but his trajectory is all wrong. His portal takes him through some of Dragon Ball Z‘s most pivotal battles, bringing him into conflict with the likes of Cell, Frieza, and even the androids in Trunks’s dark future. Of course, he picks fights with all of these guys, and he eventually finds his way back to defeat Buu as well. Unfortunately, he also has to battle another version of himself. The cocky twerp’s quest for glory is literally his undoing.
5 Raditz Grows A Conscience – Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 2
Fans didn’t see much of Goku’s brother in Dragon Ball Z. His sinister deeds kickstarted the Saiyan Saga, but he was quickly killed off. The second Budokai Tenkaichi game extends the drama by having Raditz hit his head and lose his killer instinct. It’s the same happy accident that befell Goku, and the long-haired warrior likewise finds friends in the Z-fighters.
Tragically, his savage tendencies start to return, and the heroes are forced to kill him anyway. The result is the same; the journey is simply different. What’s surprising and slightly unnerving is seeing Raditz genuinely care about his family and learn to protect what’s important.
4 Cooler Camps Out On New Namek – Dragon Ball Z: The Legacy Of Goku II
The Legacy of Goku games may follow the show, but they also throw in some movie villains to spice things up. This becomes clear when Cooler confronts Piccolo; he wants revenge on Goku for killing his brother, Frieza. Despite this murderous motive, the tyrant takes a raincheck, challenging Goku to meet him on New Namek.
This forms the game’s biggest side quest, as players must gather the seven lost Namekians to actually get to New Namek. Once they do, though, they can switch to Goku and settle things with Cooler. On the other hand, they can take one of the other characters, such as Gohan, Piccolo, Vegeta, or Trunks. This secret boss can be as straightforward or out-of-left-field as fans want. Then again, it already strains credulity when Cooler is willing to wait years on New Namek for someone to come. Let’s hope he had something to occupy himself besides slaughter.
3 Android 21’s Sweet Tooth – Dragon Ball FighterZ
This time, the main campaign itself is the crazy one. Dragon Ball FighterZ tells an original tale about Android 21, a secret project from the depths of Dr. Gero’s computer. Unlike previous models, she seems to be based on Majin Buu. This leads her to create an army of clones so that she can turn them in candy and satiate her hunger. Of course, she eventually wants to move on to the real deals. Yes, this deranged robot wants to eat the Z-fighters.
That’s not even mentioning the fact that players themselves are inside the heroes’ heads. Goku (and eventually Frieza and Android 18) has a mysterious presence inside his mind that can control his body. He must work with this entity to regain his lost strength and save the day. This is the type of meta scenario that Toriyama reveled in during the original Dragon Ball, so it’s refreshing to see it return in such a huge capacity.
2 Devilman Saves The Day – Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3
As popular as Dragon Ball Z is, the original Dragon Ball often falls by the wayside. However, Budokai Tenkaichi 3 sports more characters than any game in the franchise, and it aims to use them. As such, when Frieza comes to Earth seeking revenge for his defeat on Namek, Devilman of all people steps up to challenge him.
Debuting as a thrall of Fortuneteller Baba, this demonic warrior mostly serves as a gimmick thug along with her vampire, mummy, and invisible man fighters. However, he comes equipped with a unique technique called the Devilmite Beam, which targets even the smallest specks of evil in people’s hearts and uses it to destroy them. Suffice it to say, he has plenty to work with here. Wielding this attack, Devilman wipes out Frieza, King Cold, and their entire army. It just makes you wonder why this move isn’t used more often.
1 Vegito Vs. Gogeta – Dragon Ball: Raging Blast
Fans have debated for years as to which of these fusion characters is stronger. They both come from the combined power of Goku and Vegeta, but their methods of merging are entirely different. Raging Blast finally includes this dream match as an extra tale.
It just amounts to a standard fight between the two, but this in itself is insane. For obvious reasons, it’d be tricky for Vegito and Gogeta to meet in any continuity. Luckily, this little episode throws logic out the window. It exists purely to let fans act out one of their childhood grudge matches, finally determining which fused fighter reigns supreme. Of course, the short answer is Vegito.
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