New Dead or Alive 2 Impressions

EGM West Coast editor Wataru Maruyama gives the latest Dead or Alive a play through. Check out his impressions.


If you're lucky enough to be near one of the few arcade test locations in the US, this could be your only chance to check out Tecmo's Dead or Alive 2. Why is that? As you know, the US Dreamcast version is currently scheduled for a Q1 2000 release, which doesn't give the game much time to make arcade operators much money. The situation in Japan is quite different since no home version has been announced. In any case, if location tests go extremely well, DOA 2 will see a limited arcade release. However, there's always a chance it won't. Either way, you will indeed get to play it soon, either in arcades or on the Dreamcast. So here's what you can expect.

The graphics are very good, and I think DOA 2 looks just as good as Soul Calibur in terms of character builds, although the animation isn't quite as beautiful as Namco's fighter. The animation still looks great though, and it has been totally revamped since the first title. Bouncing has been toned down, which may disappoint some fans, but the female characters remain as fit as ever. The backgrounds range from "just OK" to stunning at times, and the fact that some of the stages have multiple levels adds to the wow factor. From the limited amount of time I had to play, it seems like the gameplay has definitely been refined with different stun moves and animations, as well as with more comprehensive counter attacks. The action seems to have a better flow, and it is not as abrupt as it was in the original. In two-player mode, you can either go one-on-one or have a tag battle. This may change, but you can only tag when the opponent has been knocked down or when you lose. It would be nice to be able to tag whenever you want, but as I said, this was subject to change. A really nice bonus is the story cutscenes between each round.

The bottom line is that if you're a DOA fan, this game is going to make you very happy. As for me, I'm very happy and can't wait for a home conversion.

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