Dragon Ball: 8 Video Games That Actually Told Original Stories

The Dragon Ball franchise has many video game adaptations, but some games came with their own original stories.

The story of Dragon Ball has been retold countless times in video games, to the point where many gamer fans of the franchise likely know every scene by heart. Usually, games have players go through the major sagas and movies, particularly those of the Dragon Ball Z era, with few (if any) major changes to the original narrative.

Once in a while, however, a few Dragon Ball games come along that defy that trend. Some have told brand new stories set within Akira Toriyama’s expansive universe, while others have revisited classic Dragon Ball storylines in new and unexpected ways.

Dragon Ball Heroes Creates New Storylines Featuring Virtually Any Character You Can Think Of

The [Super] Dragon Ball Heroes card arcade game routinely creates new sagas featuring characters from the Dragon Ball manga, anime, movies, other games, and virtually anywhere else. The storylines usually involve the player selecting an avatar who travels to the game world of Heroes to stop a threat. While the avatars are all human, they can transform into a Dragon Ball race once within the game world.

Heroes not only tells original stories but also introduces new characters like Mechikabura and gives established characters new transformations and fusions like Super Saiyan 4 Vegito. Heroes’ success has spawned numerous game ports and manga, along with an animated series.

Dragon Ball Z: Idainaru Son Goku Densetsu Revisited Goku’s Life As A Story Gohan Was Telling Goten

Though technically a retelling, what made Idainaru Son Gokū (“The Greatest Gokū Son Legend”) unique was its framing story. Set shortly before Goku’s return at the 25th World Martial Arts Tournament, the game involved Gohan recounting Goku’s greatest battles to Goten, who had yet to meet their father. As players progressed through the game, other characters like Chi-Chi, Master Roshi, Krillin, Piccolo, and even Vegeta joined Gohan in giving their accounts of Goku’s most memorable fights.

The game’s cut scenes were extremely faithful stylistically to the Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z anime series, at times recreating key moments from both shows.

Dragon Ball Legends Followed The Adventures Of A New Toriyama Character Named Shallot

Dragon Ball Legends’ general premise shares similarities with Dragon Ball Fusions, such as a “Tournament of Time” (not unlike Fusions’ Timespace Tournament) and Dragon Ball characters from various timelines. Yet Legends has plenty of differences from Fusions, including its main character, an amnesiac Saiyan from the distant past named Shallot.

Like Android 21 in FighterZ, Shallot was designed and created by Akira Toriyama and regularly goes on missions with (or receives training from) established Dragon Ball characters. The game has gradually expanded on Shallot’s backstory by introducing his identical evil twin Giblet, who works for the game’s main villain, the Mysterious Man.

Dragon Ball FighterZ Brought Back Android 16 & Introduced Android 21, Whom Akira Toriyama Designed

Dragon Ball FighterZ was a loving throwback to 2D-style fighting games, but its main story was brand new. The Story Mode featured a new version of Android 16 recruiting Goku in stopping the Red Ribbon Army and the mysterious Android 21, who’d cloned several characters and resurrected old foes. The player’s involvement was actually incorporated into the game, as the soul of a mysterious individual-the gamer-could possess Goku, his friends, and his enemies.

The game’s biggest legacy was introducing Android 21, who’s shown up in numerous games since. A human version of the character even appeared in Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot.

Dragon Ball Fusions Combined Virtually Every Dragon Ball Era & Introduced Fusions Galore

Dragon Ball Fusions let players control and customize an original character with a default name of “Tekka,” and had them visit familiar faces and locations from all over Dragon Ball history brought together by a Timespace Rift. “Tekka’s” main allies were Goten, Trunks, Kid Goku, and Dragon Ball GT’s Pan, making it the rare game where the kids were in charge.

Fusions introduced a staggering number of original fusions and two new fusion methods: EX-Fusion, which let two fighters fuse indefinitely, and Ultra Fusion, which temporarily combined five fighters through the Fusion Dance. Classic Dragon Ball characters could be collected as allies, along with roughly 70 original characters.

Dragon Ball Z: Shin Budokai – Another Road Gave Future Trunks His Own Buu Saga Before Dragon Ball Super

For years, fans wondered if Future Trunks ever faced Babidi and Majin Buu in his native timeline. Dragon Ball Z: Shin Budokai – Another Road was an early attempt to provide an answer, letting gamers guide the sword-swinging half-Saiyan through his own version of the Majin Buu conflict.

The game had many plot points that were absent from Dragon Ball Super’s version of the story, including Future Trunks returning to the past to recruit Goku and his fellow warriors to fight Babidi, his minions, and Buu. Certain actions and choices made in the game could affect the story’s outcome, including when Trunks lost a battle.

Dragon Ball: Plan To Eradicate The Saiyans Introduced Hatchiyack And Spawned A Famous OVA “Strategy Guide” & Even More Video Games

The Nintendo Famicom’s Dragon Ball: Plan to Eradicate the Saiyans featured Goku and his friends fighting Dr. Lychee and his creation Hatchiyack, who could restore old Dragon Ball Z villains as “Ghost Warriors.”

Plan to Eradicate the Saiyans was the first Dragon Ball game whose story wasn’t adapted from pre-existing material. What truly set it apart, however, was the Original Video Animation (OVA) made by the actual Dragon Ball Z anime staff and cast to guide players through the game. The OVA was later used for two “Choose Your Own Adventure” style games for the Bandai Playdia, then remade for Dragon Ball: Raging Blast 2.

Dragon Ball Xenoverse 1 & 2 Had Gamers Fix The Timeline With Trunks… & Imported Many Characters From Dragon Ball Online

The Dragon Ball Xenoverse fighting games essentially took the time travel missions from Dragon Ball Online and made them the main feature. Players could create a highly customizable “Future Warrior” from any of five races (including Frieza’s) and join Time Patrol Trunks in stopping Towa, Mira, and new villains like Demigra from warping Dragon Ball history.

The Xenoverse games were a clever way to retell the original Dragon Ball sagas while adding plenty of changes and twists. They also not only “rescued” characters from the defunct Dragon Ball Online, but also properly introduced a few more who the MMORPG had only mentioned, like Chronoa and Fu.

Dragon Ball Online Continued The Saga 216 Years In The Future

Before Dragon Ball Super, the most ambitious attempt to continue Akira Toriyama’s Dragon Ball series was Dragon Ball Online. Set two centuries after Goku left to train Uub, the game allowed players to create their own Human, Namekian, or Majin character, who’d go on present-day quests and time travel missions to prevent history from being altered.

Toriyama was actively involved in the game’s development, providing ideas and character designs. Though sadly shut down before it could receive a proper international release, several characters who debuted in Dragon Ball Online, like Towa, Mira, and Time Patrol Trunks, have appeared in various other games since.

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