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Published by VegettoEX
18 February 2010, 12:48 PM EDTComments Off

The game was released just a week ago in Japan, and we finally have word from Namco-Bandai that Dragon Ball DS 2 will be coming to North America, as expected, under the title of Dragon Ball Origins 2.

The first game was released stateside by Atari under the title of Dragon Ball Origins back in November 2008. We gave our initial thoughts on the game back on Episode #0151 of our podcast. We never got around to finishing the first game, mostly feeling that the controls relied too heavy on stylus-only input.

The sequel is coming sometime in Summer 2010 straight from Namco Bandai themselves, who acquired the rights to the franchise all to their own last year.

NAMCO BANDAI GAMES ANNOUNCES DRAGON BALL®: ORIGINS 2 EXCLUSIVELY FOR NINTENDO DS™
Comic Mischief and Adventure Await as Next Handheld Chapter of Popular Anime Series Unfolds with New Features, Several Playable Characters and Co-op Gameplay

SANTA CLARA, Calif., (Feb. 18, 2010) – Leading video game publisher and developer NAMCO BANDAI Games America Inc., announced today that Dragon Ball®: Origins 2 exclusively for Nintendo DS™ will be available in North America this summer. A follow-up to the original Dragon Ball: Origins for DS, Dragon Ball: Origins 2 continues the story of series hero Goku’s early years as he and his friends search the world for the seven enchanted Dragon Balls. The new action-adventure game includes an array of features including the ability to play as different characters along the way and the option to team up with a friend for co-op multiplayer challenges.

In Dragon Ball: Origins 2, players battle through the Red Ribbon Army saga covering Goku’s first encounters with the nefarious Red Ribbon Army up to the resurrection of Upa’s father, a member of the native tribe who serve as the guardians of the mystical Korin Tower. Players have the chance to play not only as Goku, but also the added variety of familiar faces he encounters as the journey progresses including Krillin, Bulma, Yamcha and more, each with their own abilities and power-ups. The whimsical and beloved graphical style of the series comes to life as animated cut-scenes unfold the story.

A challenging mix of action and exploration awaits, as Goku and friends must use a wide range of skills to solve puzzles, find treasure chests, and defeat armies of baddies. A situation-based camera adapts with the changing gameplay to bring players closer to the action. An overhead view allows players a broad perspective as they jump, swing and charge through forests, underwater areas and more. Meanwhile, key boss battles switch to side-view to emphasize the signature fighting style of the Dragon Ball series. With support for both stylus and button input options, players are free to choose their preferred control style.

In addition to an exciting single-player mode, two players can join up for satisfying co-op multiplayer challenges via a wireless local connection. By playing the single-player adventure, special multiplayer stages including challenging boss fights unlock and become available. Players are also able to carry over their saved character from the single-player mode as they battle alongside friends in co-op mode.

Dragon Ball: Origins 2 for Nintendo DS™ will be available in summer 2010. For more information about the game, please visit www.namcobandaigames.com or http://dragonball.namco.com. To join the official fan community, please visit http://www.gokuscorner.com.

The company’s trailer seems to be a mix of the original Japanese trailer and totally new material. It remains to be seen which voice cast the North American release will feature, but if Attack of the Saiyans was any indication, we might be in for a treat with the original Japanese cast in our pockets.

It sounds like Dragon Ball DS 2 did not do so well its first week in Japan, and had a massive drop-off compared to the first game. This is going to be incredibly interesting to follow and eventually review here on the site — it seems like the game is addressing a lot of our concerns from the first one, and yet the Japanese audience just is not that interested. I suppose we will keep our expectations in check until this summer.

There is no word yet on whether or not the Famicom game will be included as an extra within the game outside of Japan (as either Shenron no Nazo or Dragon Power).

Published by VegettoEX
17 February 2010, 3:06 PM EDTComments Off

Our buddy Sebastian dropped a link to a fascinating interview with Mr. Anison himself, Hironobu Kageyama, over on otaku2.com. Perhaps the most interesting tidbit from the interview is:

PG: What song are you most proud of?
KH: That’s tough, but I guess it would have to be “CHA-LA HEAD-CHA-LA.” No matter where I go, people are happy when I sing that song.

Having seen the man perform the song live as a part of the JAM Project concert at Otakon 2008, I can personally say that his smile is like none other when the lyrics are shouted back at him.

Published by VegettoEX
16 February 2010, 3:49 PM EDTComments Off

Sakura-Con has announced Mayumi Tanaka as a guest of honor. Tanaka is widely known for her portrayal of Kuririn in the Dragon Ball series (as well as characters like Yajirobe and occasionally Uranai Baba, not to mention Luffy in One Piece). The convention is set to take place in Seattle, Washington from April 2-4.

Published by VegettoEX
16 February 2010, 3:48 PM EDTComments Off

A trailer for the third Dragon Ball Z Dragon Box from FUNimation has popped up as a mislabeled trailer for Volume 2 over on its respective Amazon listing:

This trailer is also narrated in-character (similar to the first two), though this time by Sonny Strait as Kuririn. While the trailer does not give a set release date, RightStuf’s most recent catalog updates peg the set for 04 May 2010, just a couple weeks before the first domestic release of Kai.

Published by VegettoEX
15 February 2010, 6:39 PM EDTComments Off

FUNimation’s blog has been updated with the voice recast information from Katsucon, as well as confirmations on characters who are retaining their voice actors in Dragon Ball Kai from the current cast. While some of this information has been indirectly leaked over the last couple weeks, this is the first official statement from FUNimation on main roles being kept:

Reprising their roles from Dragon Ball Z:

Goku – Sean Schemmel
Vegeta and Piccolo – Christopher R. Sabat
Raditz – Justin Cook
Master Roshi – Mike McFarland
Tien – John Burgmeier
Ox King – Kyle Hebert
Chi-Chi – Cynthia Cranz
Nappa – Phil Parsons

Also returning are Linda Chambers Young as Frieza and Sonny Strait as Krillin and Bardock.

There are still a couple characters that have not been mentioned, minor and otherwise. We have seen many calls for recastings of both Yamcha (previously Chris Sabat) and Kaiō (previously Sean Schemmel), neither of which have announced by FUNimation as-of-yet in terms of Kai voicing.

Key figures within FUNimation have stated that this new dub of Kai will be taken in a different direction from their up-until-now standard treatment of the series, such as using an accurate script. There is not much for us to say just yet until the actual product is released, but it is interesting to note how Tenshinhan is still being referred to as “Tien” (and to a lesser extent, the spelling of Freeza’s name) — this may be an indication that some precedents set over the last 15 years may be too difficult to move past. We will certainly find out for sure in May!

With an uncut, bilingual home release (so far) planned as the first product fans in North America will officially receive, no matter your preference is for a language, it appears we will all get what we want.

As a minor aside, it is fascinating to be simultaneous talking about voice recastings for both the Japanese and English side of the franchise. It feels like conversations from ten years ago (the shift from Ocean Studios to an in-house FUNimation cast) have resurfaced in a tiny way!

Published by VegettoEX
14 February 2010, 9:29 PM EDTComments Off

Our forum buddy SHINOBI-03 let us know that the Arabic dub of Dragon Ball Z is set to continue this month, apparently picking up where it left off with episode 54. It is set to air on the channel “SpacePower”, an Arabic cartoon channel aimed at teenagers and young adults. Two trailers have made their way to YouTube:

The original Arabic voice actor for Son Goku, Mr. Zeyad Errafae’ie, passed away on August 26th.

Published by VegettoEX
14 February 2010, 9:28 PM EDTComments Off

Following up on the news from last August of the first DVD set, our buddy sangofe let us know that France is set to receive the second part of the first TV series 19 May 2010. The giant set will contain episodes 69-153, contain both French and Japanese audio (along with French subtitles) with uncut audio and video tracks, and will retail for €149,90.

Published by VegettoEX
14 February 2010, 9:27 PM EDTComments Off

Earlier this week FUNimation announced a “multi-year, national licensing” partnership with New Jersey-based “Shocker Toys” to produce “Mallows” based on various franchises, including Dragon Ball. These are 5-inch, marshmallow-theme figures that apparently “feature up to 10 points of movement and up to 7 interchangeable parts”. While there is nothing yet to show, the figures are expected to go into production this year.

Published by VegettoEX
14 February 2010, 9:26 PM EDTComments Off

This week we took out our grab-bag of topic ideas and found one that was only moderately-interesting at first… but just got more and more fascinating as we looked into each instance. Confused? Perhaps this will help:

Throughout the series, characters mis-pronounce or otherwise mis-read another character’s name. These are usually Japanese-specific jokes penned by the author, and can be incredibly difficult to adapt in translations. This week we take a look at some of these examples from the perspective of both the original Japanese version, as well as some other languages and their adaptations. Download the show now, or head on over to the podcast page for more information or to subscribe.

SHOW DESCRIPTION:
Episode #0209! VegettoEX, Meri, and Julian discuss jokes in the series based on the mispronunciation of a character’s name. Remember such characters as Tenka-ichi Budokai competitors Mago Gosora and Gyoza…? Domestic “Kai” release news (including some dub recasts), February’s releases, and a whole lot more rounds out the episode.

REFERENCED SITES:

Published by Hujio
14 February 2010, 4:15 PM EDTComments Off

Earlier this afternoon at Katsucon 16 in Maryland, FUNimation announced some additional details concerning Dragon Ball Z Kai at their industry panel. FUNimation confirmed that the series main cast will remain the same as in their original English dub of Dragon Ball Z, except for four new cast members; Doc Morgan (Narrator), Colleen Clinkenbeard (Son Gohan), Monica Rial (Bulma), and Brina Palencia (Chiaotzu and Pu’er). The announcement also featured the box art for the first domestic release of the series (photo courtesy of Zach Logan), and confirmed a release date of 18 May 2010.

We have no official confirmation on the following, but according to some sources that attended the panel, FUNimation representatives did indicate all releases of Dragon Ball Z Kai (DVD and Blu-ray) will be in a 4:3 full screen format. The representatives also speculated that each release would comprise 13 episodes. Again, this is unconfirmed, and some details may change before the release date. However, this information does seem to be fairly reliable and in line with FUNimation’s current release practices.

We will be sure to keep you updated with any additional details or changes. Also, a big thanks to both Zach Logan and Yuugi’s Black Magician for most of the information.