All that said, fans of Dragon Ball Z: Xenoverse will recognise a lot of the core combat system in Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot. What sets the latest Dragon Ball Z game apart from its predecessors is perhaps its story scope and its open world elements. In Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot, players get the opportunity to explore the universe itself up close and engage in activities like gathering ingredients, training, and fishing. You can ask side characters to cook dishes using your gathered ingredients, which in turn provide bonuses in battle. There are also a range of side quests available as you explore the bigger Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot world, which in turn will reward you with further items, ingredients, and ‘soul emblems.’ Soul emblems come in the form of character tokens which can be equipped on the game’s ‘community board’. Depending on how you use these tokens, you can unlock bonuses in battle, cooking, or during the story.
While I found it entertaining to go fishing every now and then while I was exploring the bigger Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot world, I found the world’s side quests and universe pretty lacklustre overall. Most side quests rarely go beyond ‘find person X’ or ‘collect ingredient X and Y’, and often provide very small bonuses for the effort it takes to complete them. While the scenery in the world is beautiful and the world’s houses and cities look like they’re plucked directly from a Dragon Ball Z episode, there isn’t much going on beneath the surface.