DEAD OR ALIVE 5 Last Round Review

Blake Peterson
DEAD OR ALIVE 5 Last Round Info

genre

  • N/A

players

  • 1 - 2

Publisher

  • Koei Tecmo

Developer

  • Team Ninja

Release Date

  • 03/30/2015
  • Out Now

Platform

  • PC
  • PS3
  • PS4
  • Xbox One
  • Xbox360

rating

It's really the last version. Really, really.

Rather than resting on their laurels and simply producing a new-gen port of Dead or Alive 5:Ultimate, Team Ninja and Koei Tecmo have created their final, ultimate, super special, really-the-last-one-this-time version of Dead of Alive 5, subtitled "Last Round." Being released in both retail and their free-to-play "Core Fighters" mode, DOA5:LR brings the rock-paper-scissors counter gameplay of striking beats throwing, which beats blocking, which beats striking (ad infinitum) to the new-gen consoles, PC, and PS3, and Xbox 360. 
 
The good news visually is that Dead or Alive 5: Last Round is a nice 1080p upgrade to the series that takes advantage of the new-gen console's higher-resolution versions of the textures and particle effects. The bad news is that in some scenes, the uprez from 720p means literally being able to see the polygonal vertices of the character models in some shots; Ayane's bare, pointy shoulders could put out someone's eye, which might make her a deadlier ninja, but a bit less alluring. Dead or Alive 5 is starting to show its age visually, which is why it's probably a good thing this is the actually-final-version. 

Like DOA5: Ultimate, there are new additions. The first new stage, Crimson, puts you on a rooftop in a slum from which you can get knocked down below and smashed into different parts of the environment. The other stage, Danger Zone, a remake of a level from prior in the series, is a bit like The Lab, except without the forcefield around the edge, so that you can knock your opponent down onto another electrical grid below. If timed right, you can juggle your opponent off the electric grid almost continuously. 

This is the most ridiculously character customizable version of DOA5 (I was about to write, "yet" but was assured this is actually the last one by Koei Tecmo execs when I previewed the game in October) with over 400 open and unlockable costumes, including 31 designed by DOA players. Purchases and unlockables from DOA5: Ultimate can be transferred over from prior save data, and it and newer material can be purchased on an a-la-carte basis, or in packs containing all the character customizations for a total of $95.

The game is a good bit of fun between friends, as the rock-paper-scissors gameplay makes for some quick decision making without a high barrier of entry. Though at higher levels of play, every fighting game has a certain technical degree of study necessary to know character moves and timing, DOA:5 remains relatively accessible and fun, and Last Round is no exception. 

While the new additions and the costume collection are nice, the strongest value of Dead or Alive 5: Last Round is its clean 1080p presentation on new-gen consoles where it performs cleanly and admirably. Priced at $39.99 on Xbox One, PS4, and PC, and $29.99 on PS3 and Xbox 360, it is the same game with a new coat of paint. It's still enjoyable, even if it's starting to show some age. 
 

Copy provided by publisher. Review based on PS4 version. Also available for Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3, and PC.

REVOLUTION REPORT CARD

3.5
Rating
Box art - DEAD OR ALIVE 5 Last Round
Clean 1080p graphics
Upgraded textures, particles
Starting to look dated
2 new stages, characters
Not much else new for non-collectors
400+ open/unlockable costumes
those costumes may come with a hefty price tag