This article is part of our Dragon Ball FighterZ series.
Rejoice, fellow Dragon Ball FighterZ players! The days of seeing Kid Buu and Cell in damn near every team are gone. A balance patch, along with Base Goku and Vegeta, hit on Wednesday and has changed things for the better.
Ever since the last balance patch came a few months ago, people have been crying out for nerfs to Cell and Kid Buu. They were far and away the best characters in the game with very little negatives to the point where some pros felt like they had to use the characters in order to stay competitive. Those players can rest easy now, though, as their kits have been heavily dialed back to the point where other characters are now sitting at the top of the pile.
With both Cell and Kid Buu, the most impactful changes have come to the start up/recovery frames and damage scaling of their normal attacks. In both cases, the frames have been increased, giving opponents more time to react and punish, while the damage scaling has also been increased, meaning that combos will do less damage now. Additionally, with Cell’s Aerial Rolling Crush and Kid Buu’s Mystic Ball Attack, the attacks no longer cross-up opponents, making it easier to block. These changes, while seemingly minor on the surface, have effectively neutered these characters to the point where almost every pro who previously used either has talked about dropping them both from their teams in favor of stronger characters. I had been dragging my feet on learning these two to keep up with the meta, but now I don’t even have to worry and can just move on to other characters on the roster.
The buffs given to everyone else is perhaps the biggest part of this patch, more so even than the nerfs above. Almost across the entire roster (except in the case of Vegito who got hit with the nerf hammer for no apparent reason), characters were brought up to equal levels, allowing plenty of options in terms of team compositions.
Frieza saw his normals and specials receive reduced start up frames and increased hit stun, as well as his Golden form being given a reverse beat, which completely switches up his combo structure.
Trunks can now cancel more of his attacks into special moves, while his assist was given more hit stun.
Gotenks’ DIE DIE Missle Barrage got huge buffs to damage, start up frames, and hit stuns.
Android 21 saw the hit stun of her assist, Total Detonation Ball, and Homing Energy Blast get an increase.
Even Teen Gohan and Zamasu have gotten some much-needed buffs to round out their kits.
And then there’s Nappa, who received perhaps the biggest buffs of all. He now has three lows, which is a rarity in this game. The hitbox on his crouching heavy was expanded. The hit stun and start up frames of his assist was increased. Blazing Storm isn’t as negative on block as it was previously. Too bad now enters the invincible state faster and has less recover frames. Basically, he’s a bit of a beast at the moment. So much of a beast that EVO champion Dominique “SonicFox” McLean has called out the character’s strength a couple of < a href=”https://twitter.com/SonicFox5000/status/1027051437119950848”>times since the patch was released.
Essentially, this was the patch that everyone has been looking for. Not only did we get buffs across the board for many characters, but Base Goku and Vegeta are actually very strong characters in their own right. While Bardock eventually ended up as a top-tier character, the other three DLC characters have fallen a bit flat with the community. They’ve either been too niche or just simply not strong enough to be competitively viable. With these characters, though, the community has found strengths from the jump. I’m already thinking of putting them both into my own team. They’ve just got some interesting movesets and loops that will be fun to tinker with. Who knows if they’ll end up truly being meta, but they’re at least viable at first blush.
It’s been quite the week for Dragon Ball FighterZ. We got a new trailer for the first character of the next DLC pack, Cooler. We saw some amazing high-level action all weekend at Evo. Then we got what’s easily the best balance patch of the game’s short lifespan.
What a time to be a Dragon Ball FighterZ fan.