Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2 (ドラゴンボールZ2, Doragon Bōru Zetto Tsū) is a video game based upon Dragon Ball Z. Budokai 2 is a sequel to Dragon Ball Z: Budokai and was developed by Dimps and published by Atari for the PlayStation 2 and Nintendo GameCube. It was released for the PlayStation 2 in Europe, Australia, and the United States on November 14, November 23, and December 4th, 2003 respectively. In Japan, it was released on February 5, 2004 and was published by Bandai. The GameCube version was released over a year later for all regions except Japan, which did not receive a GameCube version, although the European GameCube version did feature the Japanese voiceover. This year long difference allowed for the opportunity to improve the graphics slightly, add more difficultly settings, and add new costumes in all versions.
Budokai 2 is a fighting game with cel-shaded graphics to mirror the look and feel of the combat in the TV series. In order to experience the full potential of the game, a Memory Card is required to obtain and edit skills, and create custom characters. The basic fighting encompasses a Health bar and a Ki bar as a part of the visible HUD. When the health runs out, the character loses (as in most fighting games). Ki is required to perform special moves and Ki Blasts. Combos are performed by entering a series of P (punch), K (kick) and E (energy) buttons, as well as the directional buttons. Characters also have the ability to dodge and guard against attacks with the G (guard) button.
Also included are special attacks and ultimate attacks. These attacks are usually signature techniques of characters seen in the series, such as Goku's special, the Kamehameha wave, and his ultimate, the Spirit Bomb. While special attacks can be formed simply using the E and directional buttons, Ultimate attacks are more complicated and require a combination of the P, K, and E buttons. In addition to this are the varying mechanics for ultimate attacks. Some will automatically work upon their execution, while others require time-sensitive button inputs, rotating the control stick to build power, or struggles which require both players to rotate the control sticks and outperform the other. This is the first fighting game in the series to add button sequence when doing certain attacks (such as ultimate moves, continuous ki blasts, etc.).
Where Budokai 1 covers the events of Dragon Ball Z up to the Perfect Cell Saga, Budokai 2 covers the events of the Dragon Ball Z series up to the Kid Buu Saga. While the first game uses a chapter interface to guide the player through the sagas, Budokai 2 uses a much different interactive game board. Each game board represents a different saga of the series.
Since the game covers events up to the Kid Buu Saga, it includes characters and transformations seen after the Perfect Cell Saga. For example, Goku and Vegeta can now transform into their highest levels of Super Saiyan seen in Dragon Ball Z. Characters such as Adult Gohan and Majin Buu are also playable. However, the game also removes certain characters, such as Kid Gohan, Zarbon, Dodoria and Android 19. Characters like Frieza and Cell also no longer have the ability to transform and are in their final forms by default.
Another new feature of the game is the introduction of fusion characters such as Vegito and Gotenks. These characters are not conventionally selected from an in-game character roster. Rather, actual fusions are performed mid-fight either through the Potara or the Fusion Dance. Furthermore, is the addition of "What-if" characters such as Tiencha (Yamuhan in the Japanese version) and Gokule (Gotan in the Japanese version), as well as new absorption forms for Super Buu such as Vegeta absorbed, Cell absorbed, Frieza absorbed, and Tien & Yamcha absorbed. In story mode, brand new enemies such as Majin Frieza and Majin Cell can now be fought.
As in Budokai 1, each character is able to be customized by using a 7-slot skill tray. Players may choose up to 7 skills and give them to a fighter. Skills can take from one to seven slots. There are three types of skills: "Special Moves" which includes skills such as the Kamehameha and Super Saiyan, "Physical" which includes such skills as Super Dragon Fist and Zanku Fist, and "Equipment" which includes skills such as Senzu Bean and Bulma's Wish.
Main article: List of stages in Budokai 2 Story mode in Budokai 2 consists of a board game-like adventure called Dragon World. In this mode, the player incarns Goku who, along with one or more allies, travel around the 9 different levels defeating enemies and collecting items such as money, capsules or Dragon Balls. Once the game is completed, if all seven Dragon Balls are collected, the player is able to make a "wish" which lets him choose one from three special capsules, which include Breakthrough Capsules (these allow a player to use all of a character's moves and abilities at once), Fusion capsules, and Bulma costumes.
Other than Goku, there are several playable allies in Story Mode. Those playable allies are:
- Kid Trunks
- Vegeta (unlockable)
- Trunks (unlockable)
- Great Saiyaman (unlockable)
- Supreme Kai (unlockable)
- Yamcha (unlockable)
- Hercule (unlockable)
- Videl (unlockable)
The World Tournament allows players to compete against the computer or up to 8 players in a Martial Arts Tournament. If more than one human player is present no prize money is available, but with only one human player the following prizes can be won:
- Novice: 10,000 Zeni
- Adept: 30,000 Zeni
- Advance: 50,000 Zeni
If the player reaches second place, he will win half the prize money. Once the first place is won in Advance mode, the player can go to the Skill Shop and unlock the World Tournament Cell Games Rules, in which the Fusion and the Potara can be used.
Dueling mode allows a player to fight the computer at a preset skill level, or two human players to fight each other using any custom skills. A player may also watch a fight between two computer fighters.
Made up of three sections, the Skill Shop, character editing, and instructions. A player may edit skills on either memory card.
Aside from Dragon World, the Skill Shop is the place to get skill capsules. Bulma will wear a different costume depending on the number purchased at the Skill Shop (up to seven). Not every skill is available here, (Fusions and Breakthroughs can only be found in Dragon World) and the prices range from 1,500 Zeni to over 1,000,000 Zeni.
This mode is unlocked when the player wishes for the capsule (by completing the Dragon World with all seven Dragon Balls). Here, one or two players may play under various special conditions. One player mode builds up Ki (a form of energy in Dragon Ball Z) and when you have enough you will unlock Babidi-related skill capsules. This is the only way to unlock Dabura and Majin Buu (Fat, Super and Kid).
|Name||Returning Transformations||New Transformations||Costumes Available in All Versions||Available at Start|
|Name||Transformations||Costumes available in all versions||Available at Start|
|Name||Transformations||Costumes||Available at Start|
The following are exclusive costumes for characters found only in certain editions of the game. This may depend on the game's region, platform, or if its the Dragon Ball Z 2 V Japanese extremely limited edition.
|Character Name||Costume||Costume's Transformations||Versions available in|
Same as normal
Same as normal
Same as normal
|Standard appearance (with weighted clothing)||
Same as normal
- World Tournament Stage
- Muscle Tower
- Planet Namek
- Red Ribbon Base
- Hyperbolic Time Chamber
- Urban Area
- Supreme Kai's World
- Grandpa Gohan's House
Japanese version extras
In the Japanese version of Budokai 2, entitled Dragon Ball Z 2, are references to Akira Toriyama's Nekomajin manga. This includes an extra level in Dragon World and Frieza's son Kuriza as one of Frieza's alternate costumes. Also included are the Cell Games Tournament and the Z difficulty level, both of which were added to the GameCube version of Budokai 2, and later to all versions of Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 3.
Dragon Ball Z 2 V
Main article: Dragon Ball Z 2 V Dragon Ball Z 2 V is a remake of Dragon Ball Z 2, the Japanese version of Budokai 2, released exclusively in Japan for the PlayStation 2. Only 2,000 copies of the game were made for distribution for some lucky V-Jump readers. Though most of the game is the same as Dragon Ball Z 2, some additional features include some new alternate costumes for several characters, notably Cooler as an alternative costume for Frieza, as well as some other features.
|Character Name||Voice Actor (Japanese)||V.A. (U.S. English)|
|Goku||Masako Nozawa||Sean Schemmel|
|Teen Gohan||Masako Nozawa||Stephanie Nadolny|
|Gohan||Masako Nozawa||Kyle Hebert|
|Great Saiyaman||Masako Nozawa||Kyle Hebert|
|Goten||Masako Nozawa||Kara Edwards|
|Piccolo||Toshio Furukawa||Christopher Sabat|
|Vegeta||Ryō Horikawa||Christopher Sabat|
|Bulma||Hiromi Tsuru||Tiffany Vollmer|
|Dr. Briefs||Jōji Yanami||Chris Forbis|
|Future Trunks||Takeshi Kusao||Eric Vale|
|Kid Trunks||Takeshi Kusao||Laura Bailey|
|Krillin||Mayumi Tanaka||Sonny Strait|
|Yamcha||Toru Furuya||Christopher Sabat|
|Tien Shinhan||Hirotaka Suzuoki||John Burgmeier|
|Hercule||Daisuke Gōri||Chris Rager|
|Videl||Yuko Minaguchi||Kara Edwards|
|Supreme Kai||Yuji Mitsuya||Kent Williams|
|Kibito||Shin Aomori||Chuck Huber|
|Raditz||Shigeru Chiba||Justin Cook|
|Nappa||Shōzō Iizuka||Phil Parsons|
|Frieza||Ryūsei Nakao||Linda Young|
|Captain Ginyu||Hideyuki Hori||Brice Armstrong|
|Recoome||Kenji Utsumi||Christopher Sabat|
|Android 20||Kōji Yada||Kent Williams|
|Android 16||Hikaru Midorikawa||Jeremy Inman|
|Android 17||Shigeru Nakahara||Chuck Huber|
|Android 18||Miki Itō||Meredith McCoy|
|Cell||Norio Wakamoto||Dameon Clarke|
|Majin Buu||Kōzō Shioya||Josh Martin|
|Super Buu||Kōzō Shioya||Justin Cook|
|Kid Buu||Kōzō Shioya||Josh Martin|
|Babidi||Jōji Yanami||Duncan Brennan|
|Dabura||Ryūzaburō Ōtomo||Rick Robertson|
|Supreme Kai||Yuji Mitsuya||Kent Williams|
|Saibaman||Toru Furuya||John Burgmeier|
|Cell Jr.||Hirotaka Suzuoki||Justin Cook|
|Shenron||Kenji Utsumi||Christopher Sabat|
|World Tournament Announcer||Hirotaka Suzuoki||Eric Vale|
|Narrator||Jōji Yanami||Kyle Hebert|
Reception and Sales
The game received slightly better reviews than its precursor Dragon Ball Z: Budokai. Many critics enjoyed the cel-shaded look but thought the gameplay still needed work. It has a 69% average on Game Rankings.
The game sold 507,000 copies on PS2 in Japan according to Famitsu's 2004 year end chart. The Re-released "Best" edition sold an additional 77,000 copies. In the United States the game sold 1.5 million copies on PS2.
- In the opening sequence, when Piccolo, Gohan, Goten, and Trunks are seen raising their hands, Gohan is wearing the orange gi but with a much thinner belt and no blue shirt under it.
- In the opening sequence of Budokai 2, the entire Ginyu Force makes an appearance, even though Captain Ginyu and Recoome are the only members that appear in the game.
- Teen Gohan is unavailable to be selected as a teammate in the story mode even after unlocked.
- Future Trunks was given the ability to transform into Super Saiyan 2 in this game and the rest of the Budokai series, replacing his 2nd Grade Super Saiyan and 3rd Grade Super Saiyan forms from the previous game.
- Occasionally, when hit, Dabura yells "Son of a...!". He does not finish the sentence.
- The game has a glitch that has the ability to freeze time with Android 17, Android 18, and Cell. To use it, the player has to taunt at exactly the moment when the Energy Field attack is used. By doing this, everything is frozen but the player. To get out of the glitch, the player must punch or kick his opponent. This glitch does not occur with Super Buu (Cell absorbed), who also has the Energy Field.
- Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2 official PlayStation website page
- Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2 at Game Rankings
- Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2 review at IGN