DragonBall Z: Budokai 3 Advanced Gameplay Mechanics/Depth Guide By: Fabian Ahmed Version: 1.00 ============================================================== Table of Contents: I. Introduction II. Basic Mechanics III. Advanced Mechanics IV. Conclusion ============================================================== I. Introduction Budokai 3 has plenty of depth that many scrub players just cannot get. Scrub players such as Game Informer and just about all the raters who gave the game a 5 or below are also strong examples of players who also show scrub knowledge. This guide is to cover the mechanics of this game, as well as the depth. ============================================================== II. Advanced Basic Mechanics First, you have a wide variety of things to know and think about in a Budokai 3 fight. These are the basic maneuvers of the game: Blocking Dodging Side-Stepping Teleport Countering Teleport Rushing Flying into the air Flying back to the ground Dashing forward Leaping Forward Leaping Back Dashing Back Hyper Mode Dragon Rush Combos Throwing Taunting Powering Up Believe it or not, each of those basic maneuvers offered at the different gameplay levels have different mechanics behind them that can completely alter your style of play. Blocking: Executed by Holding the guard button (standardly X). Damage from attacks is reduced, fatigue is gained. Ki is gained while blocking attacks. Attacker gains ki as well. Grabs, ultimate launchers and fully charged power attacks cannot be blocked. Some dash attacks are guard breakers, others pierce guards. Special death moves pierce guards. Transformations break guards. Dodging: Executed by tapping guard (standardly X). No damage is taken, no fatigue is gained. 1/2 of a ki bar is consumed when dodging an attack. Attacker gains ki. Ideal when making counter-attacks within a combo. Grabs, ultimate launchers and fully charged power attacks cannot be dodged. Transformations cannot be dodged. Side-Stepping: Executed by pressing guard along with up or down. Character jumps or steps to the side. Ideal for positioning yourself in an advantageous position after an enemy attack. Good to execute after dodging attacks in a combo. Teleport Countering: Executed by pressing towards + guard. Character loses 3 bars of ki, but gets behind the opponent after any attack and launches a powerful counter-attack sending the opponent flying. This attack can also be teleport countered, as long as there is enough ki to support it. TC is the frequently used short hand term for this. Fatigue is gained. Teleport Rushing: Executed by pressing ki when an opponent is hit by a knockback attack and is in the air. Attacker teleports behind the flying opponent and power hits them forward. This can be done 3 times. Each teleport rush takes up a bar of ki to use, and the opponent gains a bar of ki. You can also direct at what angle you knock someone with a teleport rush. Press Up + E to knock them up, E to knock them forward, and down + E to knock them down. Dashing Forward: Done by tapping forward and holding it. Character takes a small leap and flies forward. Others such as Kid Gokou run instead. Useful for closing a space gap. Leaping Forward: Done by tapping forward. Useful for closing small space gaps. Due to the slow recovery, the forward leap is easy meat for a death move. Leaping forward is done before a dashing forward. Dashing Backward: Character leaps back and flies back. Useful for keeping away from the opponent. Small leap makes an open spot for death moves. Leaping Backward: Character simply leaps back. Useful for keeping a distance. Leap makes an open spot for death moves and ki blasts. Flying into the air: Done by dashing backwards and holding up. Character slowly rises. Good if you want to take the fight into the air. Flying Back to the Ground: Done by dashing backwards and holding down while in the air. Character slowly descends. Useful if you want to take the fight to the ground. Hyper Mode: Done by pressing K, G, E and P all at the same time. Character glows red. Ki slowly drops, but character is not phased by ki blasts, punches and kicks. Standard attacks negate the invincibility of power moves. Ends when starting dragon rush or when all ki runs out. When all ki runs out, character takes a quick breather. Note: Avoid using hyper mode against a skilled player. All a skilled player has to do is outsmart and outmaneuver you. All a skilled player has to do is run away from you, dodging and sidestepping as needed. Once you take the breather, you're going to eat a crapload of damage. Dragon Rush: Done by pressing E after a knockback attack in hyper mode. Both characters go through a 3 stage sequence moderated by the four buttons square, triangle, X and circle. If the attacker presses a button that the defence does not, the next stage continues and damage is dealt to the defender. If the attacker guesses the same as the defender, dragon rush ends. Combos: Each character has a combo platform. Each character is easily capable of doing combos by tapping P and K. Ps and Ks can be mixed into combos to create different combinations. The forward and back motions can also change some of the attacks. Throwing: By pressing P + G, a character grabs the opponent and does a sequence of attacks. Some throws can lead into juggles. Some throws might make a character slide on the ground. Other throws just might send someone flying. It keeps going, whether you are on ground or in air. Taunting: By holding guard and then pressing down twice, a character taunts his/her opponent. If the taunt connects, the opponent loses a bar of ki. Very deadly maneuver if it can be used properly. Cannot be used if there is an item equipped. Powering Up: Done by holding guard, pressing back twice, then holding back. Character drops guard in order to gain ki at a faster rate. When powering up and hitting max ki, the character yells and releases a little energy. In this short span of time, the character is invincible to ANY attack. For characters with high baseline ki, this helps. Ultimates: After activating hyper mode with enough ki, some characters who have an ultimate equipped can press PKGE again to do a special physical attack. This attack deals no damage, but is unblockable and undodgeable. This attack, when successfully connected, sends both characters into a sequence. It usually consists of the attack beating the crap out of the opponent or charging up/getting ready for the big ultimate attack. Each character now has a bar that fills up. Players are to press the button (usually X) when the bar hits the highest. If the defender wins, then he either takes no damage, reduces damage, or makes the opponent take damage. Tien's Neo Ki Blast Cannon is the sole exception to this. If defence wins, then Tien does even more damage. If the attacker wins, they do the full damage, and the character adds more emphasis into their attack. Unless you are Trunks or Krillin, do not count on landing an ultimate in a fight. The launchers can be seen from a mile away, can be easily side-stepped or keeping enough distance away from them. You also have to be in hyper mode, which is already a give-away. Here are the other mechanics: Ki: Energy. The more energy that is in this bar, the more special & basic maneuvers can be done. Attack power and defence change at different ki levels. There are 7 bars total. Baseline Ki: A character's starting ki. When ki is below baseline, it slowly rises back up to baseline. When above, ki slowly drops to baseline. When ki goes a bar above base line, attack increases by 2%. When ki drops below base line, defence is lowered by 2%. When powered up to 7 bars of ki, characters except omega Shenron and Super Vegetto gain 4% to attack rather than two. Fatigue: Measures how much ki is gained through powering up, what speed the bars move during ultimate sequences, how long hyper mode can be held and when a character gets tired when ki drops below 1. Fatigue is gained through use of hyper mode, taking damage, and teleport countering/TC canceling. Note: Fatigue is only visible through that little graphic of the person below the health. There is an invisible bar that fills up when TCing or taking damage. When that bar gets full, the fatigue is shown by the graphic changing colors. When the graphic is blue, fatigue is low. When at yellow, fatigue is moderate. When at red, fatigue is high. But more fatigue can be gained. Once it is maxed out(which you have to take a guess at), the bar for ultimate launchers goes VERY fast, and if you are struck by any type of attack when below 1 bar of ki, your character takes damage and has to take a breather. The attacker can now go about doing a cancel combo on you, while all you can do is sit there and watch. The attacker now has 18 seconds of long combo canceling strings to do. If they are brutal, they'll combo cancel into a death move into dragon rush. If they are generous, they'll knock you into an ultimate or not do a long combo cancel. You can lower your fatigue by getting tired or using an item that recovers fatigue. This covers the basics of the game. Now, off we go to the advanced mechanics of the game. ============================================================== III. Advanced Mechanics The advanced mechanics of the game come from capsules and features that sprout from the basic mechanics. Combo Charging: By holding an attack motion in a combo, the attack charges. Only specific attacks in specific combos can be charged. By charging to the max, the attack becomes guard piercing and undodgeable. Vegeta's ->PKKK features two chargeable attacks. The first P and the second K. These charge attacks are automatically released when fully charged, and can be released at will anytime beforehand. Combo Canceling: By charging an attack and then pressing guard, a character stops charging and gets in a blocking stance. Basically, you cancel a combo. Because the character is in a blocking stance, you can immediately stop guarding and do whatever you want. Say I do Gohan's ->PKK. I land the first two hits, and I hold the last K. As it charges (as I hold K), I then press G, WHILE I am holding K. gohan is now blocking, and the enemy is stunned. I let go of the block and kick buttons, and then do a KKKK(cancel) using the same method. I can then do a <-PP followed by a PPP->P then a taunt. In many other fighting games, launching safe poke attacks that can lead into deadly combos is the main thing to keep an eye out for. In this game, combo canceling is the method of doing these safe poke attacks. In order to be considered a decent Budokai player, you must be able to combo cancel. This is what makes players easily capable of beating scrubs who play the game thinking "as long as I can do a PPPPE, I can win with any character!" Sidestep Canceling: Some combo cancels, or stuns for that matter, can leave an opponent stunned for quite a long time. Within this span of time, its possible to sidestep so you're behind the opponent, and continue the combo. Damage changes when you're behind the enemy (it increases) so you always want to sidestep cancel if possible. Remember the different stun times of each character. It also allows some stuns or combos that would not work against characters you are in front of, to work. Teleport Counter Canceling: This is done in a very similar manner to combo canceling. Instead of just tapping towards + guard, hold guard while tapping towards. Your character does not counter attack, your character blocks. You can then drop the block and do whatever you want. A whole new level of depth and gameplay is added with this. This forces more emphasis on one of the rules of high level Budokai 3 gameplay: The first person to TC is the loser. Simply because, rather than using a counter attack, people can do long strings of cancel combos. The only thing that breaks the rule of whoever TCs first is the loser is if someone can TC more than the opponent. Teleport Countering/TC canceling is like Bursting of GGX2#Reloaded. It is your get out of jail for free card (although it normally costs 3 bars of ki, so its not technically for free), but if you are outpredicted, you're in for a severe beating. Proper Ki Management: The key to winning a high level fight in Budokai 3 is being able to keep your ki level as high as possible, while keeping the enemy's as low as possible. Baseline ki and ki suppressing capsules both play a major role in the ki management department. With high baseline ki, your ki levels will often be high. With ki suppressing capsules, you can do ki-costing maneuvers such as the TC without needing to use as much ki as normal. When in a situation where you need to gain ki, focus on blocking instead of dodging. Do not block for extended lengths of time, and do not dodge for extended lengths of time. Blocking one combo or a death move is fine, but if a character keeps on pounding on you with combo cancels, then blocking is going to hurt you badly. If fighting someone with a lower baseline ki, you can dodge more. If fighting someone with a similar baseline ki, make effective use of both blocking and dodging. Every combo a character does has a weak point. This weak point is any attack that is slow to execute and slow to recover from. Vegeta's ->PKKK main weak point is the sweep on the first kick. Dodge the first punch, then strike immediately. While attacking, you gain ki. Attack frequently if possible. Hitting is something that automatically happens when there is a weak spot. In other words, once you start showing mastery of the game, you'll naturally strike the instant you notice a weak point. Taunting plays a major role, if you can use it correctly. You can only taunt with 0% risk if you perform a knockback attack on the ground that an enemy cannot perform an instant recovery from. Take Bardock's ->P+K. This is a power move. If it connects on the ground, the opponent should start rolling back, then ending up on the ground, down for a short count. THIS is when you can taunt with 0% risk. Not when they are sleeping, but immediately proceeding the attack (so you might start the taunt as the character rolls). Sometimes, you'll have to juggle the opponent and then do a knockback move once they are a certain distance up from the ground. Therefore, skilled players of the game can do successful high ki building combo cancels that have a finisher whether it be a standard hit or a death move that initiates the rolling back on the ground effect, following it up with a successful taunt. Sometimes, the taunt can successfully connect when a character is very high up from the ground. Others can only be done when the target is inches above the ground. Also, aiming a teleport rush downward can result in the rollback effect, if the victim is a certain height above the ground. The major effect of this is you gain plenty of ki, while reducing your opponent's ki. This is what counts. There are ki suppressing capsules and capsules that reduce/increase the amount of ki it takes to dodge and TC. Ki suppressing capsules include Evil Grin, Babidi's Scope, Paragas' Admonishment, the broken capsule Meditation and Ki Control. The more slots a ki suppressing capsule takes up, the more ki is suppressed. Turtle Shell is a capsule that doubles the cost of dodging and TCing, for both fighters. Dodging costs a bar of ki, TCing costs 6 bars of ki. Fights become more reliant on combo cancels, and characters with high baseline ki dominate. Concentration halves the cost of dodging and TCing for both fighters. Dodging costs 1/4 of a ki bar, TCing costs 1.5 bars of ki. Fights become more focused on TCing and characters with large combo platforms and characters with weaker ones are a little more balanced out. When turtle shell and concentration are both used, they cancel each other out. Also, Meditation itself is the best capsule in the game, and its broken. It's a close equivalent of adding +20 to ki. 1/2 ki maneuvers cost right around 1/4. 1 ki maneuvers only take right above 1/2 of a ki bar to do. 2 ki maneuvers take around 1.3 ki bars. 3 ki maneuvers cost 2 bars of ki. 4 ki maneuvers cost about 2.8 bars of ki. 5 ki maneuvers cost around 3.7 bars of ki. 6 ki maneuvers cost just over 4.5 bars of ki(Think I'm wrong here). 7 ki maneuvers cost just over 4.7 bars of ki. With meditation, no move in the game requires even 5 bars of ki to do. Teleport countering is reduced to an extreme amount of 2 ki bars. Other ki maneuvers are greatly suppressed. And, it only costs 3 slots. Trunks and Krillin are far ahead of a vast majority of the characters in the game, Piccolo and Gokou become Gods, Teen Gohan and Adult Gohan are major beasts and Vegeta can become nearly unstoppable. ============================================================== IV. Conclusion This covers my guide based on the depth and mechanics of this game. If there is anything I missed, contact me on AIM through NachoandCheese07 or email at ChangWufei@comcast.net. Credits: CjayC: Making this site Budokai 1 Computer players: Showing me that some attacks in a combo can be charged, and can be cancelled Budokai 2 computer players: For showing me sidestep canceling. Dimps: Making the game. Atari: publishing the game. Players of the game: For inspiring me to make this guide. Legal Stuff: This FAQ is only been posted here in www.gamefaqs.com. If you see this FAQ anywhere else, it is plagiarism. Feel free to distribute this FAQ as long as: I: You do not change my name II: Ask for permission III: You do not change the contents to make it look like your own IV: You do not make any money in any way off this FAQ V: If you got any info from this FAQ, to give me credit. Tell me if I made something wrong in this FAQ. I will gladly change it. This document is Copyright 2004 Fabian Ahmed. All trademarks and copyrights contained in this document are owned by their respective, trademarks and copyright holders.