BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle

BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle[a] is a 2D crossover fighting game[5] developed and published by Arc System Works, and released in 2018 on PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch and Microsoft Windows.[6] It features different characters from each series, including BlazBlue, Persona 4 Arena, Under Night In-Birth and RWBY.[7] After the game was released, characters from Arcana Heart, Senran Kagura, and Akatsuki Blitzkampf, were added as downloadable content. An arcade version was released in 2019. The game received mostly positive reviews, with praise for the visuals, music, online functionality and mechanics. However, it was criticised for lack of overall content at launch and DLC practices.

BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle
BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle.png
Limited edition boxart, featuring (clockwise from top) Ruby, Yu, Ragna and Hyde
Developer(s)Arc System Works
Bandai Namco Studios
Publisher(s)
  • WW: Arc System Works
  • EU: PQube[2]
Producer(s)Toshimichi Mori[3]
Artist(s)Konomi Higuchi[4]
Series
Platform(s)Nintendo Switch
PlayStation 4
Microsoft Windows
Arcade
Release
  • JP: May 31, 2018
  • NA: June 5, 2018
  • EU: June 22, 2018
Arcade
Genre(s)Fighting
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer
Arcade systemSega ALLS UX
Taito Type X3

GameplayEdit

The gameplay differs from previous entries of BlazBlue, Persona 4 Arena, Under Night In-Birth, Arcana Heart and Akatsuki Blitzkampf, including Nitroplus Blasterz, and RWBY, due to the inclusion of representatives for Arcana Heart and Senran Kagura. The game features an endless two tag team battle.[8]

PlotEdit

A singularity called the "Phantom Field" mixes the reality of the world with other universes. When the "Keystone" divides into four fragments, the female voice system instructs one of the main characters to keep it away from others and reach the goal. After all fragments merged into one, they prevent the system from changing the universe. However, Hazama inadvertently uses the Keystone and the system loses control of the multiverse. A group of primary candidates defeat each opponents and win the stamps. They learn that the Keystone where the system's A.I. is stored has been damaged, and an incomplete clone of Susano’o breaks free from the seal. After Ragna the Bloodedge and Naoto Kurogane destroy the clone, the system within the Keystone has been restored and lacked the mass amount of energy. All characters are gathered to participate in an endless battle, hoping to separately return home to each universe.

CharactersEdit

The game started out with twenty characters in the base game and a further twenty available as Season 1 DLC.[9] On June 7, 2018, Minoru Kidooka confirmed that Season 2 DLC will be added for Arcade Edition in April 2019 and for the full game on May 2019.[10] Blake Belladonna and Yang Xiao Long were added as free downloadable content, while other characters are available for premium.[11] In the PC version's release, Blake was available at launch as the 21st base character, while Yang was added via update patch, leaving only eighteen characters of Season 1 DLC. The first set of Season 2 DLC was announced during Evo Japan 2019, with Arcana Heart being added as a fifth franchise that were foreshadowed in Evo 2018, and a sixth fate being announced. Naoto Kurogane, Teddie, Seth the Assassin and Heart Aino, were added to Season 2 DLC for free at the launch of the arcade version and as paid content during the release of the console version's 1.5 patch (or for free if consumers have the All-in-One pass). At Evo 2019, the full version of Season 2, the Special Edition, would be announced to include battle changes, new story content, and the inclusion of the characters, Celica A. Mercury, Susano'o, Elizabeth, Tohru Adachi, Hilda the Paradox and Neo Politan. Also in full version Season 2, Senran Kagura (foreshadowed in Evo Japan 2019), and Akatsuki Blitzkampf were added as sixth and seventh franchises, adding Yumi, Akatsuki and Blitztank respectively.[12]

BlazBlue Persona 4 Arena Under Night In-Birth RWBY Arcana Heart Senran Kagura Akatsuki Blitzkampf
Notes:
†(number) Downloadable content character + which Season they first appear
Free downloadable content character

DevelopmentEdit

In a 2016 interview with Forbes, Toshimichi Mori revealed his interest for Rooster Teeth and RWBY.[26] Before the game was released, Rooster Teeth teased the possibility of a RWBY fighting game being revealed at Evo 2017 on their Twitter account.[27] On July 16, 2017, the game was announced at the Evo 2017 championships following Ryusei Ito's victory in BlazBlue: Central Fiction.[28][29] Ragna the Bloodedge, Jin Kisaragi, Yu Narukami, Hyde Kido and Ruby Rose appeared in the game on the announcement trailer.[30] Konomi Higuchi served as a character designer.[4] According to Mori, Cross Tag Battle was designed for home consoles, although the arcade version was announced.

The sprites of Under Night In-Birth were slightly redrawn for Cross Tag Battle to match the visual style of BlazBlue. As they reuse the pre-existing sprites, resized to mesh well with the 1080p resolution gameplay, Arcana Heart and Akatsuki Blitzkampf are the past fighting games using the sprites visibly redrawn by their home company Team Arcana (formerly co-owned with Examu) and SUBTLE STYLE (under collaboration with French Bread) respectively willingly since Heart's inclusion in a licensed fighting game crossover Nitroplus Blasterz and Akatsuki's inclusion for Under Night In-Birth, excluding Blitztank, whose art-style drawn differently by Arc System Works as RWBY and Senran Kagura casts.

According to Mori, the game's target userbase is for English players.[31] Cross Tag Battle is the first BlazBlue game since Chrono Phantasma to be dubbed into English, with an option to toggle between English and Japanese voices on each characters.[32] The arcade port features support for USB controllers.[33]

Pre-release, Arc System Works announced that there would be twenty paid downloadable content characters for the first season of the game, resulting in Cross Tag Battle launching with only half of its planned roster at twenty. This caused backlash from fans, with the arguments that the game reused assets from the past fighting games, and that half of Team RWBY would be sold separately.[34] In response, Mori announced that Blake and Yang would be released free of charge.[11][35] In addition, he stated that costs for the characters would not exceed that of the game's base retail cost.[11][36] Post-release, Arc System Works revealed a teaser trailer for a fifth franchise to be included, later revealed to be Arcana Heart at EVO Japan 2019. The sixth and seventh franchises, Senran Kagura and Akatsuki Blitzkampf, were revealed at EVO 2019.

ReceptionEdit

The game sold 11,696 copies on PS4 and 4,271 copies on Nintendo Switch in Japan.[43] The game received mostly positive reviews, with praise for visuals, music, online functionality and game mechanics,[37][38] but criticism of its lack of overall content at launch and its downloadable content (DLC) practices. Famitsu awarded it a score of 35/40.[40]

The game was nominated for "Best Fighting Game" at The Game Awards 2018,[44] for "Fan Favorite Fighting Game" at the Gamers' Choice Awards,[45] for "Best Fighting Game" at the Titanium Awards,[46] for the Raging Bull Award for Best Fighting Game at the New York Game Awards,[47] and for "Fighting Game of the Year" at the D.I.C.E. Awards.[48]

The game had sold over 450,000 copies worldwide in June 2020.[49]

NotesEdit

  1. ^ BureiBurū Kurosu Taggu Batoru (Japanese: ブレイブルー クロスタッグバトル) in Japanese

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Sato (April 18, 2019). "BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle Brings The Crossover Fights To Arcades In Japan Starting April 25". Siliconera. Retrieved July 12, 2020.
  2. ^ PQube Games [@PQubeGames] (March 16, 2018). "Exciting news! We're delighted to announce that BLAZBLUE CROSS TAG BATTLE is coming to Europe this summer! Universes collide in this high-octane 2D fighter! Play as your favourites from BLAZBLUE, Persona 4 Arena, Under Night In-Birth and RWBY! Trailer: t.co/VVt7DTf3YG t.co/E9JQsAWsnB" (Tweet). Retrieved December 31, 2020 – via Twitter.
  3. ^ Migliacio, Michael (July 17, 2017). "Evo 2017: Toshimichi Mori, Keeper of the Azure". Red Bull. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  4. ^ a b c Sato. "BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle Announced, Features BlazBlue, Persona 4 Arena, UNIEL, And RWBY". Siliconera. Archived from the original on July 16, 2017. Retrieved July 17, 2017.
  5. ^ Gach, Ethan. "Arc System Works Announces BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle At Evo 2017". Kotaku. Archived from the original on July 16, 2017. Retrieved July 17, 2017.
  6. ^ Yin-Poole, Wesley (July 17, 2017). "BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle stars characters from Persona and Under Night In-Birth". Eurogamer. Retrieved July 17, 2017.
  7. ^ Mejia, Ozzie. "EVO 2017: Anime worlds collide in BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle, Jubei joins BlazBlue: Central Fiction". Shacknews. Retrieved July 17, 2017.
  8. ^ Jones, Elton (July 16, 2017). "WATCH: Jubei Revealed for BlazBlue: Central Fiction & BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle Teaser Trailer". Heavy.com. Retrieved July 17, 2017.
  9. ^ "「Blazblue Cross Tag Battle」の発売日が2018年5月31日に決定。新プレイアブルキャラクター"ブレイク・ベラドンナ"の発表も".
  10. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-l0MYPPBkE
  11. ^ a b c Sato. "BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle Will Add RWBY's Blake Belladonna And Yang Xiao Long As Free DLC Characters". Siliconera. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  12. ^ "BLAZBLUE CROSS TAG BATTLE Special Edition DXパック|エビテン".
  13. ^ a b c d Reilly, Luke. "BLAZBLUE CROSS TAG BATTLE ANNOUNCED". IGN. Retrieved July 17, 2017.
  14. ^ a b c "BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle - Chie, Noel Vermilion, Waldstein reveal trailer". Youtube. NinEverything. October 20, 2017.
  15. ^ a b c "BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle Character Introduction Trailer #2". YouTube. Arc System Works. October 15, 2017.
  16. ^ a b c d "BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle adds Iron Tager, Makoto Nanaya, v-No.13, and Es". Gematsu. December 15, 2017. Retrieved December 15, 2017.
  17. ^ a b c arcsystemworks (April 19, 2016), BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle Character Introduction Trailer #8, retrieved April 19, 2018
  18. ^ a b c arcsystemworks (February 15, 2018), BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle Character Introduction Trailer #6, retrieved February 15, 2018
  19. ^ a b c d e f g h i "LAZBLUE CROSS TAG BATTLE INCOMING CHARACTER UPDATES TRAILER (EVO2018)". Retrieved December 30, 2018.
  20. ^ a b c Sato. "BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle Reveals Yukiko Amagi, Gordeau, And Azrael". Siliconera. Retrieved December 8, 2017.
  21. ^ a b c d e https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzjzSNrGqxo
  22. ^ a b c d https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0sE3m_GpVLA
  23. ^ a b c arcsystemworks (March 16, 2018), BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle Character Introduction Trailer #7, retrieved March 16, 2018
  24. ^ a b https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rsqwErCYEhg
  25. ^ ArcSystemWorks ➡️ #GuiltyGearStrive 04.09.21 [@ArcSystemWorksU] (March 16, 2018). "@mygamingaccount @RVAJoker @swordsman09 @AtlusUSA Aegis going forward" (Tweet). Retrieved December 31, 2020 – via Twitter.
  26. ^ "Arc System Works And Its Fighting Game Legacy, It's All About The Cool". Forbes. Retrieved May 21, 2016.
  27. ^ Good, Owen (July 16, 2017). "BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle announced at Evo 2017". Polygon. Retrieved July 17, 2017.
  28. ^ Migliacio, Michael. "EVO 2017: Toshimichi Mori, Keeper of the Azure". Red Bull. Retrieved July 17, 2017.
  29. ^ Saed, Sherif (July 17, 2017). "BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle announced at EVO 2017, features characters from Persona 4 Arena". VG247. Retrieved July 17, 2017.
  30. ^ Valdez, Nick (July 16, 2017). "BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle combines BlazBlue, Persona 4 Arena, and RWBY". Destructoid. Retrieved July 17, 2017.
  31. ^ https://www.famitsu.com/news/201708/08138078.html
  32. ^ Glagowski, Peter (February 8, 2018). "BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle will have an English dub when it releases". Destructoid. Retrieved February 8, 2018.
  33. ^ セナ@カズマを…🐍 [@sena_kazuma] (April 14, 2019). "パッドの接続はここで|゚ー゚)ノ #BBTAG t.co/s9jAvIFt64" (Tweet) (in Japanese). Retrieved December 31, 2020 – via Twitter.
  34. ^ Ramsey, Robert (January 13, 2018). "Half of BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle's Character Roster Is DLC, Fans Are Raging". Push Square. Retrieved January 14, 2018.
  35. ^ Romano, Sal (February 6, 2018). "BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle adds DLC character Yang Xiao Long; Blake and Yang to be free of charge". Gematsu. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  36. ^ "BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle producer addresses DLC pricing". January 24, 2018.
  37. ^ a b "BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle for Switch Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved June 8, 2018.
  38. ^ a b "BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle for PlayStation 4 Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved June 8, 2018.
  39. ^ Carter, Chris (June 6, 2018). "Review: BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle". Destructoid. Retrieved June 8, 2018.
  40. ^ a b Romano, Sal (May 25, 2018). "Famitsu Review Scores: Issue 1538". Gematsu. Retrieved May 30, 2018.
  41. ^ Higham, Michael (June 6, 2018). "BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle Review - The Tag Team Dream". GameSpot. Retrieved June 6, 2018.
  42. ^ Saltzman, Mitchell (June 5, 2018). "BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle Review". IGN. Retrieved June 6, 2018.
  43. ^ Sato (June 6, 2018). "This Week In Sales: Debuts For The Liar Princess and Blind Prince, BlazBlue: Cross Tag Bomba". Siliconera. Retrieved January 25, 2021.
  44. ^ Grant, Christopher (December 6, 2018). "The Game Awards 2018: Here are all the winners". Polygon. Retrieved December 8, 2018.
  45. ^ Glyer, Mike (November 19, 2018). "2018 Gamers' Choice Awards Nominees". File 770. Retrieved January 8, 2019.
  46. ^ "Titanium Awards 2018". Fun & Serious Game Festival. December 10, 2018. Archived from the original on July 7, 2019. Retrieved November 7, 2019.
  47. ^ Keyes, Rob (January 3, 2019). "2018 New York Game Awards Nominees Revealed". Screen Rant. Retrieved January 8, 2019.
  48. ^ Makuch, Eddie (January 10, 2019). "God Of War, Spider-Man Lead DICE Awards; Here's All The Nominees". GameSpot. Retrieved January 13, 2019.
  49. ^ Sato (June 10, 2020). "BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle Worldwide Shipment & Digital Sales Hit 450,000". Siliconera. Retrieved January 25, 2021.

External linksEdit