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Dead Or Alive 3 Review - Xbox

79%
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Developed by Team Ninja, and published by Tecmo, Dead or Alive 3 hopes to bring you that 'next-gen' feel to your Xbox. The launch title had massive hyper surrounding it, especially considering the popularity of Dead or Alive 2, and whether it lives up to it or not depends solely on you.

However, it must be said straight off that those of you looking for an in-depth fighter, with a lasting single-player experience, may have to look elsewhere. Yet if multiplayer is you fancy, then this may be the game for you!

Graphics

The graphics in Dead or Alive 3 are absolutely stunning. No other fighter can even compare. The game as a whole is incredibly detailed, from costumes, to backdrops, to even * ahem * the big-breasted women (yes they do bounce!).

It is clear that Team Ninja's major focus in DOA3 was the in-game graphics. They are just that damn good. The Forest stage, for example, looks pretty much life like. It consists of leaves being blown by the 'wind', and is particularly impressive when a body hits the floor and all the leaves move, just as they would in real life. I found myself getting smashed into the ground on purpose, just to see the effects! The level also consists of a little river bed, with the most amazing water effects you have ever seen, bar-none.

Bump mapping is also present, and in a big way. All costume's have some form of bump mapping, and it all adds to the realism. From gloves to outfits - it's all here. To quote from the comic book guy, "Best. Graphics. Ever".

Sound

Unlike other fighting games, the sound in DOA3 has been attended to rather well. The music features rock band 'Aerosmith', and whilst I'm not a huge fan, I actually don't mind listening to it when it's being played in DOA3. The in-game music can get annoying though, as sometimes it sounds like an attempted solo gone horribly wrong.

The sound affects on the other hand are generally very impressive. There are bone-crunching affects, which will leave you begging for more. When smashing someone through glass, or a stone hedge, the timing of the sound is incredibly realistic, and the actual sound itself is crystal-clear.

The main problem is the character voices. I didn't believe it when I first played the game, but all the voices are in Japanese! Not one trace of English to be found [in the voices]. Instead, there are sub-titles at the bottom of the screen, which provide an English translation. I'm sorry, but this is not good enough. It would have been appreciated by myself, and I'm sure others, if they had taken the time to provide English dubbed voice-overs. Oh well, can't win them all.

GamePlay

This is what makes or breaks a game. There's no point having vicious eye candy if the game is unplayable. So, did Tecmo and Team ... (continued next page)