Itagaki serving up DOA Xtreme Beach Volleyball 2 next

Designer confirms Team Ninja's next project is the jiggle-fest sequel, hints Ninja Gaiden 2 won't be coming anytime soon.

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In the latest issue of Famitsu Xbox 360, Dead or Alive series producer Tomonobu Itagaki commented about Dead or Alive 4's numerous delays for the first time.

While it's rare for Itagaki to make an apology, he told the magazine he feels sorry for the last-minute postponements of the well-reviewed fighter. Itagaki said that he never presumed to think that his games would affect the sales of a console. Now, though, he admits that the DOA4 delay caused major problems for the Xbox 360's launch in Japan. Nonetheless, he decided that he didn't want to release the game in an unpolished form and cause disappointment, as several 360 launch titles did in North America.

Despite DOA4's extended development, Itagaki confirms that there still are a few problems with playing the game on Xbox Live, and Team Ninja is working hard to fix the issues. He told the magazine that currently his team is having problems figuring out whether it's Xbox Live or the game itself that's causing the issues. He said the first update is scheduled for mid-February. Aside from bug fixes, it will also feature some minor changes to the game's interface.

Itagaki also told Famitsu Xbox 360 that plans to release new outfits for DO4 characters via Xbox Live Marketplace have been put off due to budget and staffing issues. However, Itagaki did say that fans and Team Ninja members had expressed interest in new costumes--and that if such costumes are ever made, they would not be free.

In the interview, Itagaki also confirmed that his next Xbox 360 release will be Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball 2, the sequel to the risqué 2003 sports game. Itagaki said Team Ninja is already working on the opening and ending scenes for the game, and he is currently implementing some new ideas to the original design. Itagaki avoided commenting on a release period.

After DOAXBV2, Itagaki say he will release an "action game." However, he hinted that the title in question won't be a sequel to Ninja Gaiden, which means it will either be Project Progressive, Dead or Alive Code: Cronus, or another title. He says the keyword for the game will be "interactivity," which will also go for the next Ninja Gaiden. He did not elaborate.

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