'Big' Dragon Ball FighterZ announcements are coming very soon, but what could they actually entail? New characters, mechanics or something else?

Posted by Dakota 'DarkHorse' Hills • January 13, 2019 at 7:18 p.m. PST

Dragon Ball FighterZ will go down as the best launch of a brand new fighting game series / sub-series in years, and we're now only one day away from likely learning about what 2019 will have in store for it.

Bandai Namco announced lasts week that a special live stream will be going down January 14 for both Dragon Ball FighterZ and Xenoverse 2 where the publisher promises "BIG" reveals, news and interviews for the titles though we don't yet have a clear idea about what's coming.

Many signs are pointing towards a second season of content popping up just around the corner, but what should we expect given the track records of the developer and publisher?

Season passes and yearly content updates has essentially become the norm this console generation with titles like Street Fighter 5 and Killer Instinct leading the way with support spanning a multitude of years though one prominent developer has largely avoided that avenue.

Arc System Works developed DBFZ, but their main areas of experience in the past decade have been with the Guilty Gear and BlazBlue series. Both of these franchises largely relied on expansions and sequels to update their content like Guilty Gear Xrd evolving to Revelator as a separate game like Super Street Fighter 4 was, but they have been experimenting with add-on based expansions in titles like Revelator 2.

Dragon Ball FighterZ and BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle, on the other hand, featured a more standard approach to current season passes including a set amount of characters released in packs over a period of time including multiple balance adjustments, but we haven't seen how they'll go about supporting another season in the same vein.

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Bandai Namco have also gotten into the business of adding DLC seasons to their games in recent years with Tekken 7 and last year's Soul Calibur 6 plus we've even seen them support a fighting title through multiple years with T7's initial arcade run followed by the two seasons we've received for the home release — that's still ongoing.

While we'll obviously need to wait until tomorrow to see what Bandai Namco and ArcSys announce for Dragon Ball FighterZ's future, we can make some educated guesses as to what'll show up thanks to their past efforts which we'll go over below.

What to expect for the potential Dragon Ball FighterZ Season 2?

New Characters

First off, we should point out that Dragon Ball FighterZ will in all likelihood be receiving a second season of content to be announced / revealed tomorrow instead of an expansion like Super Dragon Ball FighterZ or something. Expansions may have been ArcSys' go to in the past, but it's too quick of a turnaround to get a full set of new content ready in the time that the developers finished the Season 1 DLC. Season passes are also the new(ish) hotness for the FGC.

New characters are pretty much a given when a fighting game receives new content, as that's what gets players most excited and pulls the most amount of people back into the experience — and makes the companies money. Dragon Ball FighterZ had eight characters join the roster post-launch, so we should expect something similar for Season 2.

It's hard to know for certain, however, due to ArcSys and Bandai Namco handling DLC quite differently in prior years. Tekken 7 only received three DLC fighters in Season 1 while Season 2 has six, but Guilty Gear Xrd Revelator added six characters to Sign where as Rev 2 only put in two more.

Going by the previous histories and assumptions, we'll likely receive between six to eight DLC characters for DBFZ for Season 2, and there is a very good chance we'll see more pertaining to Dragon Ball Super like Jiren and the new Broly movie.

Balance Overhaul

Dragon Ball FighterZ saw a bunch of support from the developers in its first year with balance updates and changes with a major one coming less than two months ago, but another one is likely just around the corner too.

Big season balance overhauls are something we've seen in other major fighters like Street Fighter 5 and Tekken 7 plus it's another thing to get players interested in the game who may have already stopped playing for a variety of reasons and don't immediately plan on buying the DLC until they play the new version of the game.

"Dragon Ball FighterZ is in a decent place where it is now with more characters viable at the highest level than there were in the first half of last year, but fighters like Bardock, Android 16 and Gotenks still dominate the ranks due to their strengths and tool sets that just can't be ignored compared to the rest of the cast."

The game is in a decent place where it is now with more characters viable at the highest level than there were in the first half of last year, but fighters like Bardock, Android 16 and Gotenks still dominate the ranks due to their strengths and tool sets that just can't be ignored compared to the rest of the cast.

Balance changes will also be a necessity for the game if our next listed item is also included with the new content.

New or Altered Mechanics

Again, with the short amount of time between the end of DBFZ S1 and the assumed beginning of the second season, we probably won't see the entire game as we know it completely reworked from the ground up though there will likely be changes / additions to what is already there.

Tekken 7 added the new wall bounce mechanic with the major update last year and Revelator re-tooled a bunch of Xrd's existing mechanics, and I feel we'll likely get something that's in between the two for DBFZ.

Many players initially voiced concern or frustration that the title didn't have more defensive options like push blocking from Capcom's Vs. series, but that has quieted down a bit as players have gotten better with reflects and switching — or they've left the game due to its current offensive tendencies. A new defensive mechanic has a good chance of showing up in DBFZ now to give players more of a chance to deal with pressure and lock down like a push block, defensive burst or something entirely new.

New offensive tools could be a bit more tricky as that comes down to the creativity of the developers and how far they can push the game without breaking it, but an obvious idea would be to add new assist choices to the game. It may be harder to justify as a developer, however, because they'd be devoting more resources to something that players will only pick the best assist available unless things are near perfectly balanced — which they never are.

Those are our three big expectations for Dragon Ball FighterZ's announcements tomorrow / what will come in 2019, but let us know in the comments what changes or new additions would you like to see for the probably second season.

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