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Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2 (ドラゴンボールZ2 Doragon Bōru Zetto Tsū) is a video game based upon Dragon Ball Z. Budokai 2 is a sequel to Dragon Ball Z: Budokai and was developed by Dimps and published by Atari for the PlayStation 2 and Nintendo GameCube.

The GameCube version was released over a year later for all regions except Japan, which did not receive a GameCube version, although the European GameCube version did feature the Japanese voiceover. This year long difference allowed for the opportunity to improve the graphics slightly, add more difficultly settings, and add new costumes in all versions.


Budokai 2 is a fighting game with cel-shaded graphics to mirror the look and feel of the combat in the TV series. In order to experience the full potential of the game, a Memory Card is required to obtain and edit skills, and create custom characters. The basic fighting encompasses a Health bar and a Ki bar as a part of the visible HUD. When the health runs out, the character loses (as in most fighting games). Ki is required to perform special moves and Ki Blasts. Combos are performed by entering a series of P (punch), K (kick) and E (energy) buttons, as well as the directional buttons. Characters also have the ability to dodge and guard against attacks with the G (guard) button.

Also included are special attacks and ultimate attacks. These attacks are usually signature techniques of characters seen in the series, such as Goku's special, the Kamehameha wave, and his ultimate, the Spirit Bomb. While special attacks can be formed simply using the E and directional buttons, Ultimate attacks are more complicated and require a combination of the P, K, and E buttons. In addition to this are the varying mechanics for ultimate attacks. Some will automatically work upon their execution, while others require time-sensitive button inputs, rotating the control stick to build power, or struggles which require both players to rotate the control sticks and outperform the other. This is the first fighting game in the series to add button sequence when doing certain attacks (such as ultimate moves, continuous ki blasts, etc.).

New features[]

Where Budokai covers the events of Dragon Ball Z up to the Cell Games Saga, Budokai 2 covers the events of the Dragon Ball Z series up to the Kid Buu Saga. While the first game uses a chapter interface to guide the player through the sagas, Budokai 2 uses a much different interactive game board. Each game board represents a different saga of the series.

Since the game covers events up to the Kid Buu Saga, it includes characters and transformations seen after the Cell Games Saga. For example, Goku and Vegeta can now transform into their highest levels of Super Saiyan seen in Dragon Ball Z. Characters such as Adult Gohan and Majin Buu are also playable. However, the game also removes certain characters, such as Kid Gohan, Zarbon, Dodoria and Android 19. Characters like Frieza and Cell also no longer have the ability to transform and are in their final forms by default.

Another new feature of the game is the introduction of fusion characters such as Vegito and Gotenks. These characters are not conventionally selected from an in-game character roster. Rather, actual fusions are performed mid-fight either through the Potara or the Fusion Dance. Furthermore, is the addition of "What-if" characters such as Tiencha (Yamuhan in the Japanese version) and Gokule (Gotan in the Japanese version), as well as new absorption forms for Super Buu such as Vegeta absorbed, Cell absorbed, Frieza absorbed, and Tien & Yamcha absorbed. In story mode, brand new enemies such as Majin Frieza and Majin Cell can now be fought.


As in 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 and Bulma's Wish.


Dragon World[]

Story mode in Budokai 2 consists of a board game-like adventure called Dragon World. In this mode, the player incarns Goku who, along with one or more allies, travel around the 9 different levels defeating enemies and collecting items such as money, capsules or Dragon Balls. Once the game is completed, if all seven Dragon Balls are collected, the player is able to make a "wish" which lets him 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.

Other than Goku, there are several playable allies in Story Mode. Those playable allies are:


Dueling mode allows a player to fight the computer at a preset skill level, or two human players to fight each other using any custom skills. A player may also watch a fight between two computer fighters.

World Tournament[]

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 the player reaches second place, he will win half the prize money. Once the first place is won in Advance mode, the player can go to the Skill Shop and unlock the World Tournament Cell Games Rules, in which the Fusion and the Potara can be used.

Edit skills[]

Made up of three sections, the Skill Shop, character editing, and instructions. A player may edit skills on either memory card.

Aside from Dragon World, the Skill Shop is the place to get skill capsules. Bulma will wear a different costume depending on the number purchased at the Skill Shop (up to seven). Not every skill is available here, (Fusions and Breakthroughs can only be found in Dragon World) and the prices range from 1,500 Zeni to over 1,000,000 Zeni.

Babidi's spaceship[]

This mode is unlocked when the player wishes for the capsule (by completing the Dragon World with all seven Dragon Balls). Here, one or two players may play under various special conditions. One player mode builds up Ki (a form of energy in Dragon Ball Z) and when you have enough you will unlock Babidi-related skill capsules. This is the only way to unlock Dabura and Majin Buu (Fat, Super and Kid).

Playable characters[]

Returning characters[]

Name Returning Transformations New Transformations Costumes Available in All Versions Available at Start
Android #16
  • Traditional appearance
  • Silver palette swap
Android #17
  • Black shirt w/ red scarf
  • Brown hunting jacket
Android #18
  • Blue jacket w/ blue skirt
  • Black vest w/ pearls
  • Denim jacket w/ jeans
Captain Ginyu No
  • Perfect form
  • Traditional appearance
  • Blue palette swap
  • Traditional appearance
  • Kuriza coloring
  • Orange gi w/ weighted clothing
  • Blue gi
Great Saiyaman
  • Saiyaman outfit w/ helmet
  • Saiyaman outfit w/ bandana & glasses
  • Traditional appearance
  • Green palette swap
Krillin Yes
Nappa No
  • Purple gi
  • Nail's outfit
Raditz Yes
Recoome No
Teen Gohan
  • Base
  • Super Saiyan
  • Super Saiyan 2
  • Blue tunic, white pants
  • Green pants and sash
  • Base
  • Super Saiyan
  • Super Saiyan 2
  • Base
  • Super Saiyan
  • Blue sleeveless jumpsuit
  • Bulma's Battle armor w/ jumpsuit
  • Orange Turtle School gi
  • Yellow jacket

New characters[]

Standard Characters
Name Transformations Costumes available in all versions Available at Start
Android #20
  • Traditional appearance
  • Blue palette swap
  • Traditional appearance
  • Gray palette swap
  • Purple gi
  • Saiyaman outfit
  • Goku's generic gi
  • Base
  • Super Saiyan
  • Base
  • Super Saiyan
  • Super Saiyan 3
  • Traditional appearance
  • Yellow & green palette swap
Kid Buu
  • Traditional appearance
  • Orange palette swap
Kid Trunks
  • Base
  • Super Saiyan
  • Traditional appearance
  • Dark gray shorts & tank-top
Majin Buu
  • Traditional appearance
  • Orange palette swap
Super Buu
  • Base
  • Gotenks absorbed
  • Gohan absorbed
  • Traditional appearance
  • Orange palette swap
Supreme Kai
  • Standard appearance
  • Green palette swap
  • Base
  • Super Vegito
  • Standard appearance
  • Black palette swap
  • White tank top w/ short hair
  • School outfit w/ pigtails
What-if Characters
Name Transformations Costumes Available at Start
  • Orange gi w/ weighted clothes; Hercule's hair, mustache & boots
  • Hercule's general appearance w/ Goku's hair, but no mustache.
Super Buu
  • Vegeta absorbed
  • Cell absorbed
  • Frieza absorbed
  • Tien & Yamcha absorbed
  • Purple & yellow vest
  • Green & yellow palette swap

Exclusive costumes[]

The following are exclusive costumes for characters found only in certain editions of the game. This may depend on the game's region, platform, or if its the Dragon Ball Z 2 V Japanese extremely limited edition.

Character Name Costume Costume's Transformations Versions available in
Frieza Kuriza
  • Japanese version
  • Dragon Ball Z 2 V
Majin Frieza

Same as normal

  • Dragon Ball Z 2 V
  • Dragon Ball Z 2 V
Cell Majin Cell

Same as normal

  • Dragon Ball Z 2 V
Goku Tattered gi

Same as normal

  • NA and EU GameCube version
  • Japanese version
  • Dragon Ball Z 2 V
Piccolo Standard appearance (with weighted clothing)

Same as normal

  • NA and EU GameCube version
  • Japanese version
  • Dragon Ball Z 2 V

Battle Stages[]

66187-Dragonball Z Budokai 2-1

Budokai 2 menu screen

Exclusive versions[]

Japanese version extras[]

In the Japanese version of Budokai 2, entitled Dragon Ball Z 2, there are references to Akira Toriyama's Nekomajin manga. This includes an extra level in Dragon World and Frieza's son Kuriza as one of Frieza's alternate costumes. Also included are the Cell Games Tournament and the Z difficulty level, both of which were added to the GameCube version of Budokai 2, and later to all versions of Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 3.

Dragon Ball Z 2 V[]

Dragon Ball Z 2 V is a revamped version of Dragon Ball Z 2, released exclusively in Japan for the PlayStation 2. Only 2,000 copies of the game were made for distribution for some lucky V-Jump readers. Though most of the game is the same as Dragon Ball Z 2, some additional features include some new alternate costumes for several characters, notably Cooler as an alternative costume for Frieza, as well as some other features.

Voice cast[]

Character Name Voice Actor (Japanese) V.A. (U.S. English)
Goku Masako Nozawa Sean Schemmel
Teen Gohan Masako Nozawa Stephanie Nadolny
Gohan Masako Nozawa Kyle Hebert
Great Saiyaman Masako Nozawa Kyle Hebert
Goten Masako Nozawa Kara Edwards
Piccolo Toshio Furukawa Christopher Sabat
Vegeta Ryō Horikawa Christopher Sabat
Bulma Hiromi Tsuru Tiffany Vollmer
Dr. Briefs Jōji Yanami Chris Forbis
Future Trunks Takeshi Kusao Eric Vale
Kid Trunks Takeshi Kusao Laura Bailey
Krillin Mayumi Tanaka Sonny Strait
Yamcha Tōru Furuya Christopher Sabat
Tien Shinhan Hirotaka Suzuoki John Burgmeier
Hercule Daisuke Gōri Chris Rager
Videl Yūko Minaguchi Kara Edwards
Supreme Kai Yūji Mitsuya Kent Williams
Kibito Shin Aomori Chuck Huber
Raditz Shigeru Chiba Justin Cook
Nappa Shōzō Iizuka Phil Parsons
Frieza Ryūsei Nakao Linda Young
Captain Ginyu Hideyuki Hori Brice Armstrong
Recoome Kenji Utsumi Christopher Sabat
Android 20 Kōji Yada Kent Williams
Android 16 Hikaru Midorikawa Jeremy Inman
Android 17 Shigeru Nakahara Chuck Huber
Android 18 Miki Itō Meredith McCoy
Cell Norio Wakamoto Dameon Clarke
Majin Buu Kōzō Shioya Josh Martin
Super Buu Kōzō Shioya Justin Cook
Kid Buu Kōzō Shioya Josh Martin
Babidi Jōji Yanami Duncan Brannan
Dabura Ryūzaburō Ōtomo Rick Robertson
Vegito Masako Nozawa
Ryō Horikawa
Sean Schemmel
Christopher Sabat
Gotenks Masako Nozawa
Takeshi Kusao
Laura Bailey
Kara Edwards
Gokule Masako Nozawa
Daisuke Gōri
Sean Schemmel
Chris Rager
Tiencha Tōru Furuya
Hirotaka Suzuoki
Christopher Sabat
John Burgmeier
Saibaman Tōru Furuya John Burgmeier
Cell Jr. Hirotaka Suzuoki Justin Cook
Shenron Kenji Utsumi Christopher Sabat
World Tournament Announcer Hirotaka Suzuoki Eric Vale
Narrator Jōji Yanami Kyle Hebert


Publication Score
PS2 Version
IGN 7.4 of 10
GameSpot 6.7 of 10
GameCube Version
IGN 7.5 of 10
Game Spot 6.6 of 10
Review compilations (PS2 Version)
Game Rankings 69.4% (based on 39 reviews)
Metacritic 66% (based on 28 reviews)
Review compilations (GameCube Version)
Game Rankings 65.5% (based on 10 reviews)
Metacritic 66% (based on 9 reviews)

The game received slightly better reviews than its predecessor Dragon Ball Z: Budokai. Many critics enjoyed the cel-shaded look but thought the game play still needed work.

GameSpot said of the PS2 version: "The improved visuals are nice, and some of the additions made to the fighting system are fun, but Budokai 2 still comes out as an underwhelming sequel."

IGN said: "With the addition of jumping or ducking abilities, an improved movement system, or the ability to fly independently outside of the launch attack, DBZ could definitely have potential to break through its already enormous demographic and become something even bigger."

The game sold 507,000 copies on PS2 in Japan according to Famitsu's 2004 year end chart.[1] The Re-released "Best" edition sold an additional 77,000 copies. In the United States the game sold 1.5 million copies on PS2.[2]



The Gohan clothes error

  • In the opening sequence, when Piccolo, Gohan, Goten, and Trunks are seen raising their hands, Gohan is wearing the orange gi but with a much thinner belt and no blue shirt under it.
  • The opening sequence of Budokai 2 features characters or outfits for characters not seen in the game.
    • The entire Ginyu Force makes an appearance, even though Captain Ginyu and Recoome are the only members that appear in the game.
    • Similarly, Android 19 is seen with Dr. Gero in the opening sequence which is very odd seeing as Android 19 was removed from this game.
    • In the beginning of the opening sequence Goku is seen fighting Vegeta in his Saiyan Saga outfit which isn't a selectable costume for Vegeta in the game.
  • In the first few stages in the story mode Gohan starts off in a battle with Max Ki for some reason.
  • Teen Gohan is the only character that does not have the same Ultimate in the previous Budokai. Instead of Super Kamehameha, his Ultimate is the Father-Son Kamehameha.
  • Teen Gohan is unavailable to be selected as a teammate in the story mode even after unlocked.
  • Every character that can use the Kamehameha attack is blue unlike the last Budokai everyone's Kamehameha is yellow except Cell.
  • Future Trunks was given the ability to transform into Super Saiyan 2 in this game and the rest of the Budokai series, replacing his Super Saiyan Second Grade and Super Saiyan Third Grade forms from the previous game.
  • Future Trunks' sword sheath is brown instead of red for some reason. This would follow in Budokai 3 and Infinite World.
  • If Future Trunks' Ultimate Skill Burning Slash is equipped his sword and sheath will appear. Without the skill it will not appear.
  • Occasionally, when hit, Dabura yells "Son of a...!". He does not finish the sentence.
  • The game has a glitch that has the ability to freeze time with Android 17, Android 18, and Cell. To use it, the player has to taunt at exactly the moment when the Energy Field attack is used. By doing this, everything is frozen but the player. To get out of the glitch, the player must punch or kick his opponent. This glitch does not occur with Super Buu (Cell absorbed), who also has the Energy Field.
  • David Kaye is incorrectly credited to reprising Recoome in the game.
  • There are some differences between the PlayStation 2 and GameCube versions in the U.S.
    • The GameCube has an adjustable health bar for duel.
    • Obtaining the different costumes for Bulma's skill shop is obtain by making a wish in the Playstation 2 while it has to be purchased in the skill shop in the GameCube version.
    • The GameCube has an extra costume for Goku (w/ damaged clothing) and Piccolo (w/ cape and turban).
  • Most of the character lines when fighting were reused again from the first Budokai, with only a few new added lines.
  • Unlike most other fighters at base form in this game, Frieza and Cell's ki decreases overtime by default, this maybe due to them being in their final forms. The only way to avoid this is using a support skill called Gero's Perpetual Energy R&D which grants unlimited ki.
  • If you defeat an opponent with an Ultimate Attack, it ends without showing the opponent nor their health to make it look like they disintegrate since some Ultimates are ki blast.
  • While every Skill reappears again. Every Physical skill that involves Ki Blast and Dash requires the use of the analog stick and choice of four buttons respectively. Some Ultimate Skills require the use of the analog stick to fill the bar or a beam struggle. Every Physical skill involving force combos and grabbing retains the same function and animation as in Budokai 1.
  • Warp Kamehameha, Final Flash, Volleyball Fist, Videl's Close Call, Hercule's Special, Present For You, Angry Explosion, and Body Change are the only Ultimates that do not involve the use of the analog stick.
    • Hercule is the only character where both his Ultimates do not involve the use of the analog stick.
  • Vegito's Spirit Sword is the only Ultimate that he doesn't use if the Analog stick bar isn't full. Hilariously, he instead uses a Ki Blast after saying "Hmph This is Getting Dumb".
  • Several characters have more than one Ultimate with Goku, Piccolo, Gotenks, Hercule, Vegeta, and Future Trunks.
    • Goku has the most Ultimates with 3, Spirit Bomb, Super Spirit Bomb, and Warp Kamehameha.
  • Several characters from the first Budokai are not featured. Kid Gohan, Zarbon, Dodoria, and Android 19.
  • There is a cheat in the PlayStation 2 version where holding the L2 button while entering and exiting the Skill Shop will unlock all the skills overtime. This trick is helpful in not having to play the story mode multiple times in obtaining all of the Breakthrough skills and Fusion skills. Unfortunately this is patched up in the Gamecube version.
  • There are several things that remain the same from the first Budokai. The combos for every returning character, the names of every skill reintroduced, every Physical skill that involves a force combo and grabbing.
  • Kid Buu in stage 9 is the most difficult AI of all to face. It is best that the player knows combos and canceling and/or uses the support skils Viral Heart Disease and Vaccine.





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