Long before we couldn't avoid a Dragon Ball game, there was a time where finding a game based off the franchise was a difficult task.
Back in the early 2000's, there were some communities either translating japan-exclusive games, or making their own, which is where 'Bid for Power' comes in.
In development by a small group of fans for a number of years, it was eventually taken down by the wrath of Funimation's lawyers, but it's a game that's somehow aged very well in a time of Fortnite and official Dragon Ball games.
With that, here's a rundown of how the game played.
A Quake III Clone
In the early noughties, a mod would usually be made in the Quake III engine. Even games would be based off of it, such as 'Jedi Outcast', but it allowed for hundreds of communities to create games based off of franchises that, at the time, weren't seen as a viable franchise.
This is where Dragon Ball comes in. Around this time, the English dub of Dragon Ball had only reached the 'Majin Buu' saga on 'Toonami/Cartoon Network', and there was only one game in the West; 'Dragon Ball Budokai'.
On PC, there was nothing to play from the franchise, and suddenly this mod arrived. There were many characters to choose from, each with their own special attacks. The more kills you would rack up, the more your power level would increase, with some transforming, such as Goku.
There were a few maps available, such as Namek, Kami's Lookout, a desert, and Cell Games arena, but while there was a private beta test, Funimation kept calling.
Lawyers Came Calling
A 'cease and desist' letter arrived to the group, demanding that they either change the characters entirely, or stop making the game.
They chose the former, which resulted in the 'official' release in 2003, with characters being an odd cross between Raiden from Mortal Kombat and Unreal Tournament. While fun, the release was abandoned just 18 months later.
However, sixteen years on others have taken on the mantle of the game, adding cel-shading, more characters and levels, and even more abilities. It's a game that oddly reminds this writer of controlling Fortnite in the same vein, just that you can fly and fire projectiles here.
While the game is available on certain sites, the game is a relic of its time. It still plays remarkably well, and it does remind you of official entries such as 'Budokai Tenkaichi' and 'Kakarot'. In 2020 though, many forget just how good we've got it in Dragon Ball games now.
For more articles like this, take a look at our Retro page.