Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot

Game review by
Marc Saltzman, Common Sense Media
Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot Game Poster Image
Anime adventure for fans is deep on content, light on fun.

Parents say

age 8+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 3 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

While characters like main protagonist, Goku, believe they're saving the world from evil, quite a bit of gameplay focuses on fighting, which isn't very positive. In fact, in one early scene with his son, Gohan, the hero tells him how much he likes fighting and would train his son to do the same.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Goku is a young dad who wants to take care of his family, but he enjoys fighting quite a bit -- based on his comments and actions -- which might be considered negative. Also, some might not like that he goes home and within a minute asks his wife to make him lunch.

Ease of Play

Not too difficult to pick up and play. Mandatory tutorial early on, where you must fight an enemy in a 3D space (suspended in air), but you're taught controls as you go along, so there's no space to practice before you've got to use these abilities to be successful through the story.

Violence

No blood or gore, but plenty of violence. Much of the gameplay involves martial arts fighting against enemies, whether punches and kicks or energy blasts. Some non-playable cutscenes have violence, such as someone's arm being severed (not graphically depicted), someone impaled on a laser beam, hunters shooting character in stomach.

Sex

Several suggestive references, including Master Roshi being "pervy" and a "pervert," mention of a "risqué magazine," and another character who's talked about for his questionable actions toward women. An adult magazine is seen. Shows women with deep cleavage, but no nudity.

Language

Mild profanity, with words like "bastard," "ass," "damn," and "hell."

Consumerism

Based on the Dragon Ball Z series, which also has apparel, toys, TV shows and movies, comics, and more. It offers an optional season pass, with additional content (levels), but it costs extra to play.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot is an action role-playing game for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Windows PCs. The story, which is the latest installment in the Dragon Ball Z universe, lets you explore an open world, taking on quests and side missions to power up your hero so he can take on more difficult opponents in his path. Much -- but not all -- of the gameplay focuses on martial arts combat. Players can kick, punch, and use special magic attacks to defeat enemies. In the dialogue, there are comments about "perverts" who "kidnapped girls" and references to (and images about) adult magazines, although nothing's shown. Mild profanity includes words like "bastard," "ass," and "damn!"

Wondering if Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot is OK for your kids?

Parents: Set preferences and get age-appropriate recommendations with Common Sense Media Plus. Join now

Continue reading Show less

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byAndrews_fam June 6, 2020

its sutible for all ages over 8

the game involves mostly fighting but none of the fighting is too graphic. it may show a tiny bit on blood from time to time but its very tame. in this game... Continue reading
Teen, 16 years old Written byoramorelikedora August 1, 2020

It`s pretty great.

Now as a person who actually played the game and watched the anime this game is pretty great They may say things like hell, bastard and even damn but those are... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byGamersnews32 February 7, 2020

Dragon Ball Z back at it again!!!

Dragon Ball Z Kakarot is the newest DBZ game in the series. Violence is the most frequent factor. It's animated Fantasy violence. When getting heavily beat... Continue reading

What's it about?

DRAGON BALL Z: KAKAROT is an action-adventure hybrid with a dose of role-playing game (RPG) elements that lets you relive the story of Goku and other Z Fighters as you vow to protect Earth from menacing enemies. These villains include Raditz (a member of the Saiyan race, like Goku), Frieza (emperor of Universe 7), and Cell (genetically engineered by Dr. Gero), to name a few. There are several boss fighters, too, and aerial combat that tests your maneuverability skills along with your well-timed attacks to inflict as much damage as possible. But the game isn't a straightforward brawler, either, as there are quests to take on (such as collecting objects), some puzzle solving, flying through the skies or swimming underwater, fishing side quests, and more. For fans of the franchise, several dozen characters and interconnected storylines should strike a nostalgic chord, plus some of the conversations and missions may even answer some burning questions from Dragon Ball lore. In fact, the game houses a Z-Encyclopedia, which includes several unlockable items, videos, cards, and other content.

Is it any good?

If you believe the hype, you'd think this RPG would be the first major blockbuster game of 2020. But it may only satisfy serious fans of the franchise -- for nostalgia's sake -- rather than deliver a compelling game experience. On one hand, Kakarot offers a lot of variety in game styles, but it doesn't excel at any one of them. Fighting is fun, especially when you learn to link together damaging moves and combo attacks while simultaneously hovering in the air and avoiding enemy fire. But despite leveling up and facing new kinds of enemies and bosses, the action grows stale after a short while. Many of the side quests, like collecting items, can also get tedious as you complete them over time. Worse, the open world isn't very open, so you'll hit invisible walls often and hear repetitive audio tied to completing your task. Some adventuring elements are fun, like racing, but others are boring (such as collecting apples). There are also several cutscenes you have to sit through, which include painfully fake dialogue with your son, spouse, and master (as you'll see at the start of the game). Also, the long load screens really start to annoy, and don't seem to have any explanation as to why they're so lengthy.

Gameplay does get more interesting when you encounter (and then play as) other fighters, and the story takes a few twists and turns. Again, there's a ton of content here, but by the time you get to the fourth section, Majin Buu Saga, you realize the game doesn't really build up to anything significant. It's just more of the same. For the most part, Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot -- while pretty, long, and easy to control -- eventually comes off as a somewhat bloated collection of gameplay mechanics that doesn't really excel at any one of them. Die-hard fans of the franchise may disagree, and that's OK, but if the game developers are looking to broaden the appeal of this beloved series and amass new fans, this isn't the title to pull it off.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about sex, gender, and body image. Should players be concerned that there are characters considered to be "perverts," that like reading adult magazines, and that have questionable approaches to women? Does it bother anyone that the main protagonist goes home and asks his wife to make him lunch? Is this fine? Are people concerned about this being too sensitive?

  • Is the impact of the violence in Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot affected by the lack of blood and gore? Would adding more realistic elements (including blood and gore) make battles more intense, or would it break an already fantasy-focused presentation where flying, energy blasts, and rapid dashes are the norm?

Game details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love role-playing games

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate