Android 21 has some ideas in Dragon Ball FighterZ.
© Bandai Namco

The expert guide to Dragon Ball FighterZ

There’s no better feeling than a destructive finish in Dragon Ball FighterZ. So, check out these expert tips and level up your game.
Written by Ryan Esler
7 min readPublished on
You might have climbed to the top of the Muscle Tower with our previous guide, but things are only just getting started. You’ll also have undoubtedly unlocked all the hard mode arcade towers and that’s where things can get really tough. So, it’s time to kick your practise regime up a gear and get that power level over 9,000.

1. 2H or not 2H

Down and heavy attack, or 2H in 'anime' notation is one of your go-to attacks in Dragon Ball FighterZ. When players are coming straight at you with Super Dashes, or even jumping a lot, you can hammer it home with a down and heavy attack. From there, the player will be launched sky high and allow you to follow up with an attack of your own. Some characters, like Yamcha, can even hop over lows thanks to the tiny hop in his down and heavy attack.

2. Smash and status

Not to be confused with the popular English drum and bass group, smash and the other various statuses in DBFZ are vital to carrying out your follow up combos and forming combos themselves. Every character has a different series of moves attached to their heavy attacks, as well as others, which allow you to chase after them with a super dash as a combo. For every combo with a smash-type attack you also get a special knockdown off your air combo from a further heavy attack in the air (or a special move that's character dependent). This special knockdown sees your opponents slide across the floor for a set period of time and gives you a bit of extra time to fall to the ground and use a super attack. It’s also important to know that the chase status can only be engaged after a smash. So, if your combo starts with a chase it will be a tad shorter than your usual combo.
Yamcha Demonstrates a hard knockdown in Dragon Ball FighterZ.

Yamcha demonstrates a hard knockdown

© Bandai Namco

3. Follow that meter, literally.

Meter plays a massive factor in Dragon Ball FighterZ, especially when you play characters like Gohan and need to level up. So, when you land a big combo and you see your opponent slide across the ground, run after them for an additional bit of meter. You might lose damage on your combo if you don’t use your super, but the positional advantage and extra super meter is more than worth it.

4. Blast off

Sparking blast might be familiar to fans of Marvel versus Capcom 3, as well as other anime fighters, like Guilty Gear or BlazBlue. It’s a unique burst attack that lets players regenerate health, do additional damage, and even extend combos by activating on a successful hit for a unique knockdown. There are, however, some caveats in that it cannot be activated while you’re blocking, like Marvel versus Capcom 3, and cannot burst you out of a combo, like in Guilty Gear.
As it's a one time use, you’ll need to pick your spot to use it. So, in situations where a little bit more damage would kill or you’ve got a lot of blue health on your characters, use it. And if you run up against a player who's used sparking blast, try and use your longest combo to wear down their timer – and close out your combo with a big single hitting level three super (if your character has access to one, like Tien’s Neo Tri-Beam).

5. The power of the Dragon (Rush)

Dragon Rush is the Dragon Ball FighterZ equivalent of a grab. With a green flash and a short lunge forward, your character will latch on to a player and toss them into the sky. Should you press an assist button during the Dragon Rush, you’ll knock the current opponent out of the picture and bring in their corresponding character to the assist button you pressed. By switching an opponent out you also remove their regenerating health. It’s even possible to combo into a Dragon Rush. So, be sure to experiment with your characters and see what combos you can grab during to take advantage of an opponent trying to protect a damaged character.

6. If I could turn back time

You can’t, sorry Cher. But you can take advantage of the time stop when an opposing player uses a super outside of a combo. During this tiny freeze you can retort with your own super to cancel theirs or even vanish behind for a massive punish if they are close enough to the corner to bounce off the wall. For more complex strategies, you can even use reflect, that’s back and the Ki button, to push the opponents full screen and completely negate damage and blockstun imposed by the super.

7. Wishful thinking

As we all know, the Dragon Balls are immensely powerful orbs that can summon Shenron. Although matches can be long finished before you see the towering dragon, you always need to keep an eye out for them. If all seven Dragon Balls are in play, you can revive a fallen member of your team, gain an additional sparking blast, heal your main character or even 'grant you an undying body'. That means you've got to keep an eye out for those balls in play and make sure that you get them before you opponent by completing a full autocombo with seven meters in your possession.

8. Make use of the features

Downtime is the absolute worst when you’re on a win streak. Waiting around to pick your characters and then pick their colours can take a lot of time. Too much time, for some. Thankfully Dragon Ball FighterZ, not only allows you to set up your preferred team, but also your colourful preference too. That means you can have your slick all-purple team ready and waiting at the press of a button every time you enter the character select screen.

9. Advanced Combos

In the Beginner’s Guide we talked about autocombos, but Dragon Ball FighterZ’s combat is far more complex than that. By intertwining the early stages of the autocombos, you can start to make extremely long and damaging combos. All of the characters are also able to jump cancel their standing medium attacks. That means after a crouching medium attack you can follow it up with a jumping medium attack and then jump cancel that standing medium attack to an air combo. You can even jump again after the initial few hits of your air combo for a double jump combo! Every character will have their own unique combo and landing a creation of your own is magnificently satisfying.
Hit finishes off Goku in Dragon Ball FighterZ.

Hit finishes off Goku

© Bandai Namco

10. Tangled up in blue

There’s nothing worse than getting caught in a combo, bar getting caught in a combo you could have definitely escaped. In Dragon Ball FighterZ you’ll notice that most combos and their hit count are indicated by a red counter. This means that those combos are 'natural and there’s absolutely no way you're getting out. But, every so often, that number will turn blue. This blue combo indicates that there was a point you could have escaped. To escape any combo, you can mash as many buttons as you like or hold down the button of your choosing. Couple this with a directional input and you’ll flip out in the corresponding direction. It’s neat trick that isn’t fully embellished up in game, but it’s more than worth remembering. Plus it’s super fun to mash buttons when you’re stuck in a long combo, fighting game legend Seth Killian has even encouraged players to do so in games, even if it has no effect, other than purely to distract and throw of your opponent’s timing.
You won’t become a Super Saiyan God right away, but these tips are the closest you’ll get to an instant transmission right to the top. So, dig deep and lose yourself in Dragon Ball FighterZ’s extremely well-equipped training room and practise to be the hero in your own arc.