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Retro Gaming Nights: Dragon Ball Z: Super Butōden 3

If you're a Dragon Ball Z fan, you're likely to have heard of Super Butouden 3, the third installment of the Butouden series. For me, playing this game brings back so many nostalgic memories of playing it with my cousins every weekend. I still remember the secret button combinations to unlock the hidden characters, and it's a game that has stuck with me all these years.

To begin with, let's look at the positives. The gameplay is fantastic, with smooth controls that make it easy to execute moves and attacks. Playing against real people requires strategy, as you'll need to anticipate their moves and block their attacks. Compared to the previous two installments, the gameplay is much faster and more fluid, making it a step up in terms of mechanics. That said, it could still be even faster, with Dragon Ball Z being the kind of series that lends itself well to lightning-fast combos and moves.

The graphics are another strong point, with vibrant colors that make the game visually appealing. While Hyper Dimension may have better graphics, Super Butouden 3 still holds up well and is a treat for the eyes. The character sprites are well-designed, with Vegeta and the rest of the cast looking great.

Super Butouden 3 features some excellent character choices, with the addition of Goten and Android 18 being my personal favorites. While the game only includes ten characters (plus one hidden character), they are all well-designed and fun to play as. However, it's hard not to feel like there could have been more characters included, especially considering the lack of a story mode.

This brings us to the game's negatives. The lack of a story mode is a significant letdown. It's hard to believe that the developers didn't include one, given the rich and expansive world of Dragon Ball Z. Playing through the game's one-player mode can quickly become monotonous, with no real reason or context for why you're fighting each opponent.

Moreover, the game isn't challenging enough. Even on the hardest difficulty, it's easy to pummel the computer opponents, and without friends to play with, there's not much incentive to continue playing. It's a shame, as this game had so much potential to be the best in the entire Dragon Ball Z game franchise.

All in all, Super Butouden 3 is a fantastic game for Dragon Ball Z fans, but it may not appeal as much to others. The gameplay, graphics, and character choices are all top-notch, but the lack of a story mode and not enough characters hold it back. It's a game that will always hold a special place in my heart, and if you're a fan of the series, it's definitely worth checking out.

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