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Published by VegettoEX
13 September 2004, 11:02 AM ESTComments Off

Eight years ago in 1996, in the wee hours of syndication, “The Arrival of Raditz” (FUNimation’s English dub of the first Dragon Ball Z episode) aired, marking Dragon Ball Z‘s first official introduction in the US.

Published by VegettoEX
09 September 2004, 6:24 PM ESTComments Off

The “Budokai 3: Special Edition” is set to come out the same day as the regular version (with a bumped-up MSRP of $59.99). In addition to the game, you will get an exclusive chibi Broli toy and a behind-the-scenes bonus DVD… which includes a preview of a new game entitled “DBZ Sagas: Evolution”. It sounds like we are getting a new action game in 2005, so look for more information as we get it!

Published by VegettoEX
01 September 2004, 10:50 PM ESTComments Off

We received the following message from a source that wishes to remain anonymous:

I feel I should inform you that the game “DragonBall GT: Final Bout” was in fact not shipped yesterday. Our received shipments in my own store and all local stores did not contain the expected copies. I personally had a copy pre-ordered and mine never came in. We’re hoping to receive shipments by the end of the week or early next week, but New Release titles rarely come any days other than Tuesday or Wednesday. The message we received via e-mail is that the company themselves never shipped out the packages. Sorry.

Also, if this only applies to stores in my local area (PA, NJ, NY, etc.) then I apologize for providing you with false information, but to the best of my knowledge, the game was not shipped from Atari.

My copy has indeed not yet shipped, so there is likely something to this story — hope that is helpful for those of you who have not gotten your items shipped yet either and are looking for some type of explanation.

Published by VegettoEX
29 August 2004, 11:20 PM ESTComments Off

Hot on the heels of last year’s original theme song (“Kusuburu Heart ni Hi o Tsukero!!”) to “Dragon Ball Z 2” (“Budokai 2”), it seems that Hironobu Kageyama will be back again this year for the third game!

Translated below is the majority of the 14 June 2004 entry from “Kage-chan no Himitsu Nikki” (or “Kage-chan‘s Secret Diary” — Hironobu Kageyama’s very own blog on his official website):

6/14 (Monday)

Today was also a very exciting day. (^_^)v First, in Komuro-san’s own Logem [?] Studio, I worked on finishing up the vocal track from the DragonBall LA session. I re-sang it from the updated and corrected official lyrics, and we put in the chorus. The chorus is being done by the well-known YUKA-chan. And somehow, New York resident KÛKO-chan proved she could return to her home country and participate in a hurry!! (^_^)v Those two were able to sing a capella just by looking at the sheet music, so we finished in the blink of an eye. They had such a memorable tone. It reminded me of back when we were making Dragon Ball albums for the Monolith Project. Even nowadays, I sometimes drag out those CDs and listen to them; they’re still good. My own ones are as well, but among the ballads and such that KÛKO-chan has done, there are so many lovely songs that just pierce my heart. Our talk turned to that today, too, since the lyricist, Yuriko Mori-san, likes “Hitomi no Naka no Chikyû” [“An Earth Within Your Eyes”]… (^_^)v I like that one, too— and “Mizu-Iro Seijin” [“Sky-Blue Aliens”], and “Sora Meguru Bôken” [“Adventures All Around the Sky”], and… err, there’s so many that I can’t really count them all. And, though it’s a bit off-topic, I hear that when KÛKO-chan drives her car, she really steps on the gas when she hears my songs. (Laughs) Also, the conclusion we finally reached with everyone is that next year, we’re definitely going to have a DBZ Reunion live concert!! (^_^)v It’ll also be exactly 20 years since KÛKO-chan’s debut… really! After that, everyone said that of course, we’ll be inviting Shin[‘ichi] Ishihara-chan!! (Laughs) And then, once my song’s finished, next time we’ll move over to Yotsuya’s Sound Valley Studio and do the recording for “Nyahho~~ Sensei”!! What’s great about Nyahho~~ Sensei is that the tension in the acting is really incredible. (^_^)v As a joke, I said, “Sakura-chan, all of your fans might run away, because you’re too intense,” (laughs) but that might be the new situation. (^_^)v Being busy is a good thing. You know, it’s like the sense of art and skill in the songs I’ve attached myself to have become essential in the world. Every day is fun. So, then, I’ve got to try a lot harder!! (-_,-) Whew…

Summary?!

  • Hironobu Kageyama is indeed performing the main vocals on the new opening theme for “Dragon Ball Z 3” (“Budokai 3”)
  • YUKA and KUKO are performing back-up vocals on the same track
  • There will be another DBZ reunion concert (will we be lucky enough for a tour?) to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Dragon Ball

Thanks to Joshua Thompson for the heads-up!

Published by VegettoEX
24 August 2004, 3:18 PM ESTComments Off

EBGames has updated their listing of the supposed “Final Bout” re-release with some actual information (including new cover art, seen below) — it seems like this game really is seeing the light of day again!

Vintage Dragon Ball Action! First released in limited quantities in 1997, Dragon Ball GT: Final Bout, is back to honor the enormous popularity of the Dragon Ball animated series. Faithfully reproduced in its entirety, this much sought-after title offers a one-two punch of DBGT and DBZ characters, as well as a powerful variety of ruthless fighting modes. Brilliantly packaged with exclusive cover art from Toei Animation, Final Bout is the perfect addition to every fan’s collection.

EBGames is listing the ship date as 31 August 2004 for $14.99.

It seems rather odd that no official sites (such as FUNimation and/or Z-Store) have anything to say about this, especially considering it supposedly comes out in a week!

Published by VegettoEX
23 August 2004, 10:33 PM ESTComments Off

GameSpot reports that the latest pages of V-Jump reveal Banpresto’s announcement of yet another new game in Japan! Titled “Dragon Ball: Advance Adventure” for the Nintendo GameBoy Advance, the game will be a 2D, side-scrolling action game that takes place during the very beginning of the storyline (with Goku as a child). The game is slated for its Japanese release in November for ¥5040. No word yet on a possible (and probable) American release.

TOKYO–According to VJump magazine, Banpresto will release a new Dragon Ball action game for Game Boy Advance later this year titled Dragon Ball: Advance Adventure. The game will be based on Goku’s childhood stories of when he traveled around trying to find the seven mystical dragon balls.

Players in the 2D side-scrolling action game control Goku and fight through stages based on the original manga and anime’s storyline. Some examples of the stages are: the wilderness, home of the kung-fu bandit Yamcha; Pilaf’s castle, which is full of booby traps; Muscle Tower, where players must fight different enemies on each floor; and the Tenkaichi Budou Kai, where Goku battles one-on-one against other fighters, such as Tenshinhan. Aside from punching and kicking, Goku can execute Kamehameha blasts, and he can also attack with his Nyoibo stick, which gives him extra range and allows him to deflect enemy shots.

Dragon Ball: Advance Adventure is slated for release in November in Japan at the retail price of 5,040 yen ($46).

Thanks to Jetto for the heads-up!

Published by VegettoEX
18 August 2004, 11:07 AM ESTComments Off

A recent web page from Banpresto showcases the “Reverse Import” version of Atari’s “Legacy of Goku 2” for the Nintendo GameBoy Advance, which has the tacked-on phrase “International” in Japan.

Apparently it came out last month (23 July 2004) for ¥5040. Whoops — we totally missed that one!

Published by VegettoEX
17 August 2004, 11:52 AM ESTComments Off

Originally titled “Dragon Ball: Final Bout” in Japan, when released in North America for the PlayStation 1 back in 1997, the game gained the extra “GT” in the title (“Dragon Ball GT: Final Bout”), and received English voice-overs for certain elements such as the character select screen and win quotes, but retained the original Japanese dialog for the in-game battles. It was printed in a limited run, and years later would fetch upwards of $200 on auction sites.

A new listing for “Final Bout” has popped up on EBGames. Quite interesting, indeed.

When I worked at a local Blockbuster back in high school, all three PS1 games suddenly showed up in the computer system as having upcoming American release dates — it was only “Ultimate Battle 22” that eventually saw an American release, and many years later after that fact.

If “Final Bout” is actually receiving a new re-release, one would expect at least a little hype — the release date is listed as 24 August 2004, which is only a few days away!

Published by VegettoEX
14 August 2004, 2:30 PM ESTComments Off

GamePro.com has the new “exclusive” trailer up for “Dragon Ball Z 3” (“Budokai 3”) that was promised yesterday, but it is (unfortunately) nothing we have not already seen before — no new characters or new outfits shown.

Published by VegettoEX
13 August 2004, 4:30 PM ESTComments Off

GamePro.com will be holding an exclusive stream of all-new “Dragon Ball Z 3” (“Budokai 3”) footage starting tomorrow (Saturday, 14 August) at noon.

In the mean time, you can read GamePro’s interview with Daisuke Uchiyama to hold you over — there is some interesting stuff concerning new play mechanics in there.

Gamepro.com: What is the biggest change from Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2?

Daisuke Uchiyama: The transition from Budokai 1 to 2 was mainly a visual one, where we brought the graphics closer to the anime. However, with the change from 2 to 3 you’ll immediately notice the difference the moment you get your hands on the controls. You’ll be surprised how different the feel is.

GP: Budokai 2 didn’t have the same story mode as in Budokai 1–what can we expect for the next installment?

DU: Budokai 3 won’t have the type of story mode you saw in Budokai 1, with a cut scene-driven plot. Nor will it have something like Dragon World in Budokai 2, with a plot line that slightly differs from the anime. We received a lot of feedback for Budokai 2’s Dragon World–fans noticed that it didn’t progress exactly like the manga or anime series did. There won’t be any CG, or real-time 3D cut scenes either.

GP: Will there be new modes? Online play?

DU: There will be a mode that you’ll find very surprising, though we don’t want to reveal any details. With the main mode in the game you will find that you can give your characters more of a sense of individuality to them–it will really feel like you have your personal Goku.

GP: Where will the story mode start off from, in terms of the manga/animated series plot?

DU: Well, the Dragon Ball Z series name was created from the emergence of Raditz, so you can expect it to start off from there. You’ll be able to play the game from many different points of views.

GP: Will there be any new characters?

DU: You can expect more movie characters, such as Broly and Cooler. Also, there will be some more strange characters from the animated series, and also characters that you thought, “why didn’t they put this character in?”

GP: How has the fighting system changed? Can you fly or jump? Also, how have special moves changed?

DU: Budokai 1 & 2 could be thought of as the first phase of the fighting system we wanted to achieve, and Budokai 3 as phase two. There will be a heavy emphasis on air battles, and a significant part of this game will be to “take the backside” of the opponent. The system will encourage very aggressive gameplay, and the controls will be simpler, with a better response.

GP: How far in development is the game? What about the release date?

DU: We are hard at work on the game, and expect the game to be released in the same timeframe as previous installments.

GP: Do you have any plans to develop Dragon Ball games on the PSP or Nintendo DS?

DU: We have a lot of interest in those consoles–the PSP is very beautiful, and the DS would allow for interesting opportunities, such as ground and air battles [with the split screen]. The question we’re pondering is, “how to use the DBZ franchise in a handheld format?”

GP: What’s your favorite Dragon Ball game of all time?

DU: I would have to say the very first game that was released on the Famicom, Dragon Ball: The Mystery of Shenron. When I was a kid, it had a big impact on me.

GP: Do you have any final comments for fans?

DU: Being a part of the development process for the series, I can say that Budokai 2 was the evolution of the series, and Budokai 3 is the fulfillment or completion of the series. The issues that fans felt will be addressed, and I can say with confidence that it will be a very high quality title. You’ll be shocked and amazed of the level of polish that will be in Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 3.