I'm a Fan!
DOA: Dead Or Alive 5 isn't my first Dead Or Alive game. It is, however, the first DOA game that I've really taken seriously. You see when it comes to DOA I normally laugh at the Aerosmith song, get creeped out by the creepy boobs, and then call it quits. In fact I started out going into DOA 5 expecting the same thing to happen again. Instead what happened is I found the most enjoyable 3D fighting game I've played since Tekken 3.
DOA 5 uses the same Strikes, Throws, Holds system that it has done for as long as I can remember. To start off I was stuck in the same place I always used to be in, I could mash out a few Strike combos, but when it came to knowing when to use a Hold or throw I was lost. DOA avoids this by having a challenge like system during its story mode that teaches you more and more systems as you progress through the story. It is one of those things that you’d hoped fighting games would have sorted out by now, but this is a step in the right direction. It does have some faults though, while you get a bit of text telling you action they want you to do during the challenge it isn’t the same as showing you. in one of the early challenges showing you how to Hold incoming strikes I didn’t understand when a Hold has to be imputed to actually take effect. It was only after I looked it up on youtube that I found this out, a in-game video of some sort would have helped a lot here.
The game contains the standard fighting game modes of Arcade, Survival, Time Attack, and Training, for completing the first three you unlock costumes for the character you use and for some reason this unlocked some kind of gotta catch them all part of my brain that essentially meant I played way more of these modes, with way more characters, than I would normally. I even played as Brad Wong, who I do not like at all, just to unlock his alternative costumes. It certainly helps that the costumes actually look nice. Where Tekken has used the more power it gets from this generation of consoles to bolt on more and more crap to characters, DOA 5 has decided to focus on making character’s costumes more normal. Don’t get me wrong, there is still the same amount of girls in swimsuits and way too much cleavage, but my two favourite costumes consist of Tina and Mila wearing normal clothes, that normal people might wear! That just seems insane.
DOA 5 is just a fighting game that just loves the fact that it is a fighting game. The “I’m a Fighter!” tagline is completely stupid, but it sums up DOA 5’s style. I feel like half the cast just loves to fight, they totally stoked to fight, and they will repeatedly tell you that they love to fight. In a type of game where I normally feel so frustrated and cheated, even if I'm actually not, having the game just be so happy about what it is makes me smile.