The Breakers turned fighting games into an asymmetrical survival game – PlayStation.Blog
The Dimps team is familiar with Dragon Ball games. They have been at the forefront of the development of several games such as the Dragon Ball Xenoverse series, the Budokai Tenkaichi Dragon Ball Z series, and the Super Dragon All Heroes series. From the fighting game genre to the TCG genre, they understand the power of the Dragon Ball universe in many forms, and now they’ve taken on a new challenge to create an asymmetrical multiplayer survival game!
Dragon Ball: The Breakers is the latest game developed by the Dimps team and is coming to PS4 on October 14th. Ahead of launch, we wanted to give Dragon Ball fans and survival game fans a chance to learn more about what’s behind. – stage development with an exclusive interview with the Dimps team and our own Bandai Namco Entertainment producer Ryosuke Hara!
Thank you for joining us for an interview at such an exciting time for Dragon Ball: The Breakers! Please introduce yourself and describe your role in the game.
Ryosuke Hara: Hello, I’m Ryosuke Hara, producer of Bandai Namco Entertainment Inc.
Yoshiya Otsuka: Glad to meet you. I’m Yoshiya Otsuka, a developer at Dimps Corporation.
We are glad to see you in the interview! Since you are working on several Dragon Ball games, we would like to ask you what excites you the most about working on Dragon Ball: The Breakers?
Right side: From a broader perspective, the fact that we’re taking on the challenge of developing a Dragon Ball game that’s never been done before is exciting in itself. While there are challenges due to the unprecedented nature of the project, at the same time, we can experience a level of enjoyment never experienced by past Dragon Ball game makers. From a lesser perspective, as a Dragon Ball fan, I really enjoy the time I spend thinking about which Raiders and Survivor character skins to add and which skills to include to make it more interesting. Every time I do this, I realize that the allure of Dragon Ball is incomprehensible and that we have yet to fully unleash it.
Dimps has an amazing track record with over 20 years of experience developing Dragon Ball games. What excites you most about working on Dragon Ball: The Breakers?
HEY: What worries me is that this game breaks the rule of past Dragon Ball games. Dragon Ball games have traditionally been one-on-one games, or games where players fight in teams of the same number of players. However, this game is a one-on-seven asymmetrical action game that challenges the genre like never before. Also, instead of controlling main characters such as Goku and Vegeta, players control ordinary people in the Dragon Ball world such as Bulma and Oolong, who were unplayable in previous Dragon Ball games. We hope that our customers will enjoy the world of Dragon Ball that they could not experience in previous Dragon Ball games.
We are very happy to have the opportunity to ask both of you a few questions to learn more about the development process. To begin with, what considerations did you have to take into account when designing an asymmetrical multiplayer survival game in which 7 survivors try to escape from 1 super strong raider?
Right side: The concept is an “overwhelming power difference” unique to Dragon Ball. There are a lot of asymmetrical fighting games in the world today, but I don’t think there is a game in the world where characters from the same universe have as much power difference as Dragon Ball.
HEY: The balance to create an asymmetrical 1v7 game while creating “an overwhelming power difference unique to Dragon Ball” was one element we were careful with. At first glance, this may seem counterintuitive, as we wanted to achieve an overwhelming difference in power and still maintain balance, but if this balance is not achieved, the game will not work. Even now, we are still adjusting the balance through testing right before launch. As we will continue to manage the game after launch, constant balance adjustments as new characters are added will be an ongoing challenge.
In a match, survivors can face one of three raiders – Cell, Frieza, or Majin Buu. At the start of a match, the Raider starts with its first form and then evolves over time. This is such a fun and dynamic element that is unique to the survival game genre because it allows the player who is the raider to also develop their strategy throughout the match. It also creates such a sense of urgency among the remaining Survivors! How did your team implement the concepts of each form in each of the raiders?
Right side: In a nutshell, we differentiate our playstyles as follows:
- Slot: A “Generic Type” with a fast growth rate and stable search skills.
- Frieza: A “Technique type” in which the key is to use his search skills.
- Buu: A “high-risk, high-reward type” that develops slowly but immediately hunts down survivors in the second half of the game.
Which “Raider” do you like the most in design and why?
Right side: I like Freeze better. I can place Zarbon and Dodoria anywhere on the map with my skills, and I can place them so that hidden Survivors come out, or place them in front of Survivors to prevent them from being revived by other Survivors. This raider is fun because it offers a wide range of strategies.
HEY: I would say Cellular. When you choose Cell and the game starts with a maggot, that’s the moment you feel like this is something you can only experience in this game. In a way, Cell is a character that symbolizes the game, so I hope you become Cell and strive to go from larva to final form.
Signature: Not gameplay footage.
Breakers has such a unique spin on the survival game genre, as the survivors’ main goal is to escape rather than focus on the fight. What was this element of the game connected with?
Right side: BNE has released numerous Dragon Ball games. Most of these games focused on combat and retelling the original story. While I felt that this was to be expected since this is the imagery of Dragon Ball and what many people find attractive about it, I also wondered if that was really Dragon Ball’s only attraction, and at the same time, I always had a vague feeling that this is not true. It occurred to me that the threat of battles between super warriors could be felt more strongly by viewing them not from the point of view of strong characters, but from the point of view of ordinary people, taking a hint from the existence of unique characters such as Bulma and Oolongs, who do not have superpowers and do not participate in battles. In addition, the “asymmetrical battle” game genre was already well-known in the industry, and the development of this game began from the point of view that the combination of this game genre and asymmetrical battles can create new intellectual property value and synergy.
The Breakers has a game mechanic called “Dragon Change” where survivors can borrow Z Fighter powers, but this is usually used as a means of escape rather than combat. It’s a bit different from other Dragon Ball games where the focus is on combat. What was it like creating survivor characters who are essentially powerless?
HEY: In order to create the concept of the “overwhelming power difference that can only be achieved in Dragon Ball” that Hara-san gave, the “escape game” fit the concept well instead of the previous battle-based games that had been developed. On top of that, by having ordinary people in the Dragon Ball world like Bulma and Oolong become part of the game, it resulted in an experience never seen before in a game based on the original story.
In what other ways does this game bring elements of the Dragon Ball franchise to make it a recognizable part of the universe? (In particular, what iconic Dragon Ball elements and story points can players look for as they progress through the various matches and maps?)
Right side: This title is different from previous Dragon Ball games with elements that symbolize the original story scattered throughout the game. The most obvious examples are Bulma, Oolong, and Farmer, who do not have superpowers. Their characteristics and skills have not been used in previous fighting games, but this game is designed in such a way that they can be used to their full potential. From the side of the raider, the process of evolution, destruction of areas, defeating civilians, and other experiences of wandering around the map as an enemy character are all new original story experiences. There are many other elements in the game, such as summoning Shenron by collecting 7 dragon balls, using different skills, changing the dragon, etc., but I hope you will experience them for yourself when you play the game.
Finally, it would be great to end with a fun tip for the players! What are some of your tips on how to be a raider and a survivor?
Right side: We believe that the fastest way for raiders to defeat survivors is to use their own eyes and ears to find survivors, in addition to using their skills and special moves. Ears in particular are often neglected, so we hope you wear headphones and search for Survivors effectively. It is important for survivors to model in advance what they will do when they are attacked by raiders. At first, they may try to escape by simply running away, but of course, the raiders will soon catch up, so we would like you to set up your own way of escaping after understanding the characteristics of your skills.
HEY: Survivors will enjoy cooperating with other players to escape, but there are many elements for players to communicate with each other, such as stamps, emotes, and signals, so we hope you enjoy the game using these elements. We hope you enjoy the game as much as we do. The raiders also have their own voices that allow them to say Cell and Frieza lines at any time from the original story. Being able to say Cell and Frieza lines in combat situations similar to those in the original story is another way to enjoy the game! These items will be added to the game in the future, so we hope you continue to enjoy the game long after it’s released.
Thank you so much for taking the time to discuss Dragon Ball: The Breakers in depth as we prepare to launch on PS4 on October 14, 2022!