Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2 (known in Japan as Dragon Ball Z 2) is a 2.5D sci-fi fantasy fighting game developed by Dimps and published for the PlayStation 2 in Europe (by Bandai on November 14, 2003), North America (by Atari on December 4, 2003), and Japan (by Bandai on February 5, 2004).
The sequel to Dragon Ball Z: Budokai, Budokai 2 covers the entire main Dragon Ball Z arc of the Dragon Ball manga and animated series, adding numerous characters from the latter end of the series. In addition, the previous game's Story Mode is replaced with a new "Dragon World" adventure mode that is inspired by board games.
It was later ported to the GameCube by Pyramid, which was released in North America (on December 15, 2004), Europe (on March 18, 2005). The game also received a limited-edition PS2 release in Japan, titled Dragon Ball Z 2 V, given to 2,000 lucky sweepstakes winners for the V Jump magazine. Along with numerous bonus costumes (including Cooler as an alternate costume for Frieza), this version unlocks all content from the start.
As in the first Budokai, 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. Breakthrough allows all attacks both physical and special moves but no equipment.
Story mode in Budokai 2 consists of a board game-like adventure called Dragon World. In this mode, you play as Goku and along with one or more allies, travel around the 9 different levels. Along the way you defeat enemies and collect items such as money, capsules or Dragon Balls. After you complete the game, if you have collected all seven Dragon Balls, you are able to make a "wish" which lets you 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.
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 a player reaches second place, they will win half the prize money.
The game includes 30 playable characters (22 of which must be unlocked) and 4 special "fusion" characters.
Playable characters that were removed from the first game are Kid Gohan, Zarbon, Dodoria, and Android 19. Cell Jr. has also been removed as an opponent. While some characters have new transformations, some characters have their non-final transformations removed (namely Frieza and Cell).
Unlocked from the Start
Unlocked in Dragon World
- Yamcha (unlocked in Stage 1 by defeating Nappa as Tien)
- Nappa (unlocked in Stage 1 by defeating him as Vegeta)
- Recoome (unlocked in Stage 2 by defeating him as Goku)
- Vegeta (unlocked in Stage 3 by defeating him as Goku)
- Captain Ginyu (unlocked in Stage 3 by defeating him as Vegeta)
- Trunks (future timeline, unlocked in Stage 3 by defeating Vegeta as Trunks)
- Frieza (unlocked in Stage 3 by defeating him as Goku)
- Dr. Gero (unlocked in Stage 4 by defeating him as Goku)
- Android 17 (unlocked in Stage 4 by defeating him as Piccolo)
- Android 18 (unlocked in Stage 4 by defeating her as Krillin)
- Android 16 (unlocked in Stage 4 by defeating him as Goku)
- Cell (unlocked in Stage 4 by defeating him as Goku)
- Gohan (Great Saiyaman, unlocked in Stage 4 by defeating Cell as Teen Gohan)
- Supreme Kai (unlocked in Stage 5 by defeating him as Goku)
- Dabura (unlocked in Stage 5 by defeating him as Gohan)
- Hercule (unlocked in Stage 6 by defeating Majin Buu as Great Saiyaman Gohan)
- Videl (unlocked in Stage 8 by defeating Super Buu w/ Gohan absorbed as Hercule)
- Gohan (Teen, unlocked in Stage 9 by defeating Cell as Gohan)
Unlocked in Babidi's Spaceship
- Majin Buu
- Super Buu
- Kid Buu
Through special unlockables, some characters can fuse together as a single combatant. While Gotenks and Vegito appeared in the original manga and anime, Tiencha and Gokule are original "what-if" characters. Fusions cannot be used in both Dragon World and Tournament modes.
In order to fuse, players must input a special command with either of the characters. Fusions done with the Fusion Dance are time-limited, while fusions done with the Potara Earrings persist throughout the match. If the fusion "fails", then one of two things happen: either the player can no longer attempt the fusion for the match (Potara Earrings) or the player must use a weaker version of the character (Fusion Dance).
- Gotenks (Fusion Dance, fusion of Goten and Trunks)
- Vegito (Potara Earrings, fusion of Goku and Vegeta)
- Tiencha (Fusion Dance, fusion of Yamcha and Tien)
- Gokule (Potara Earrings, fusion of Goku and Hercule)