But, mostly dead.
Ah, the brawler. No matter who you are, where you are there's something cathartic about beating the living daylights out of another human being using nothing but your fists, a sword or perhaps even a poolcue
. No matter what, fighting games will be around, be they of the brawler variety, or of the standard fighting game kind.Dead or Alive 4
is hardly going to be confused for a brawler, but it may be confused for a good game, given the natural... assets on display.
The premise behind the game is that Helena, the opera singer from previous installments, is now the head of DOATEC, a company whom has been doing some pretty nasty things involving the ninja-runaway Kasumi's DNA. Helena organises the 4th Dead or Alive tournament for some reason, and people show up to fight.
Yeah, it's not exactly an award-winning plot.
The premise of the game is simple. You pick a fighter, the AI (or the other player) picks a fighter, you fight, and if you're fighting the AI, you lose, get more frustrated and fight again. There are several moves you can pull off, with a Practice mode included just so that you can see what they look like when the AI doesn't counter-throw them all the time, unlike in the story mode.
In Story mode, you pick a character, fight the AI, lose, restart, fight, lose, restart, etc. until you win and move onto the next enemy, lose to them, restart that fight, lose again, etc. Although for the most part the story AI isn't that challenging, I found myself repeating quite a few fights because they kept counter-throwing my blows, blocking them, or interrupting me with a throw. Especially the last enemy, called Alpha-152. Trust me, she will quickly get on your nerves, and "Game Characters I Just Want To Die Horribly" list. If she makes it into Dead or Alive 5
, I will be very angry.
And if you thought Story was tough, Time Trial mode is just plain insane
. It's essentially Story Mode, except you have to win in a time frame, and if you want the unlockable goodies earnt by playing it, you have to beat every opponent twice in a particular three-round match. Lose a match, and you lose any progress towards advancing to the next one. All this does is prevent one-off flukes from earning progress, which when Alpha-152 or any particularly grab-heavy character is concerned, is the only way you win at Story mode.
Not that there's much to unlock. Beating story mode with 4 particular characters unlocks others. Beating the story mode as any character unlocks a costume and their ending video. Beating Time Trial mode with any character that doesn't have a Story mode unlocks a costume. Getting all the costumes unlocks a character. That's it. Quite an aesthetic-heavy reward system.
Which is explainable when you look at the roster. Half the game is female characters, and all of them are extremely... well-endowed, if you get the point (Both of them! Ba-zing!). What's more, even if your character is wearing a very tight costume which defies their flexibility, they still 'bounce' as much as a Jell-O mould of a bouncy castle. Badoing, badoing. Yeah, they're clearly 'padding' for the male audience*. Although I am able to appreciate the effort, I just wish more attention had been spent on the AI, rather than the boingy boingy.*Note to self: No more lame puns. Ever.
As if that wasn't bad enough, most of those unlockable costumes are there only to show off the jubblies. From catsuits to maid outfits and others inbetween, there's hardly a costume in this game not designed to get someone's 'attention'.
All in all, Dead or Alive 4
seems more like softcore porn than it does a fighting game. Even then, though, I can't recommend it to anyone, as I don't want to expose anyone else to the horrors that is Alpha-152. Die in hell, you stupid translucent bint.