Team Ninja Talk Dead or Alive 5’s New Look And Goals

By Ishaan . August 14, 2012 . 3:05pm

Tecmo Koei have uploaded part 1 in a series of Dead or Alive 5 developer diaries, where Team Ninja discuss the fifth game and how they went about creating it. The video features quotes from various members of the development team, including director, Yohei Shimbori, and Team Ninja head, Yosuke Hayashi:



Dead or Alive 5 will be released on September 25th in North America for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.

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  • Göran Isacson

    Has it really been seven years since the last Dead or Alive game was released? Not counting Dimensions, that is.

    At any rate, I think they’ve at least succeeded in their visual goals, the characters do seem more expressive and “alive” now, so to speak. As far as gameplay is concerned though… well, that we’ll have to see once we get the actual game in our hands.

    •  The last game was basically around the xbox 360 console launch, so yeah.

      • Göran Isacson

        Wow. I really had no idea it had been that long… guess it’s about time they made a comeback, then.

    • rurifan

      The faces seem kinda ugly now though… I want it to be awesome but… I have doubts. T^T.

      • Göran Isacson

        I seriously have no idea what people mean when they say this. I have looked and looked at the faces of the new characters, and I can detect no “uncanney valley” or misshapen anatomy.

        • rurifan

          It’s not the uncanny valley, they’re just ugly to me. The girls faces are blunt and oddly unfeminine. For a brand built on pretty girls you’d think keeping them pretty would be top priority.

          • Sakurazaki

            I actually think they look quite pretty.

            Not to degrade your opinion, though. As an avid DoA player since 1, I can see where you’re coming from. I’m just one of those people that actually adore these new looks, but still appreciate the old ones very much so.

          • Göran Isacson

            I think this is one of those cases where we’ll just have to agree to disagree, because I’m plain not seeing anything “blunt” or “unfeminine” about them. Still pretty in my eyes, even if I can’t say I found them that pretty before (see above response to FB for further details on that).

        • FB

          They changed the facial design of many characters. They look more realistic, but that’s like saying Call of Duty or Battlefield 3 isn’t realistic. They aimed for an odd design choice in the wake of Itagaki’s departure and it really shows. A lot of the characters are barely recognizable from how they’ve looked in DOA1-4, despite the obvious graphical improvements in each of those games allowing for more facial detail to be flushed out.

          It’s hard to explain, but most of the complaints are coming from people who enjoyed the previous DOA’s. 

          Bayman doesn’t look like Bayman (looks like Chris from RE5), Brad Wong looks like a meth head or a severe alcoholic (technically, he is an alcoholic – but boy oh boy did they go over the deep end depicting how ‘real’ that is), Helena has a buttchin in DOA5, despite never having one. And some of the animations are SUPER uncanny valley, much like Zach’s intro and Tina’s win animations.

          I love DOA. But not this one. 

          • Göran Isacson

            See, that’s the kind of concise critique that I can actually admire, because I just see so many people claim they’re “ugly” and never develop further than that.

            I will make a confession here: I haven’t found Dead or Alives designs attractive for a long while (there were my teenage years where I didn’t really look further than the boobs, but I would like to think I’ve moved on since then). My problems started when I noticed that the girls looked so same-y. Their faces looked the same. Their bodies looked the same. It was like staring at a collection of porcelain dolls, and it started putting me off the series design choices.

            I will admit that when I take a closer look on the male characters they do seem to have more wrinkles and lines to their faces, and I get that when you like a more cartoon or animesque-style design realism is going to put you off (I must admit that I mourn the loss of Bayman’s bright orange vest and beret). But in my opinion the old designs were so uninteresting, so unmemorable that they never really stuck. When I look at these designs I basicall just go “yup, that’s probably what those old models would look like if they had a more realistic design”, and that’s more or less it. I do admit that Helena’s new chin is odd, but I barely even noticed it until you pointed it out.

            So to make a long story short, I guess that I don’t mind the new designs because I found the old ones bland and lacking in variety, and these are much more in line with my sense of aesthetics. Granted, most girls do still seem to have the same bodies and faces… but they’re at least not porcelain dolls.

            As far as animations go, I freely admit that I’m not very good at spotting those so they could be off or wrong- I just won’t notice it.

          • FB

            Team Ninja’s particular attempt at “realism” here has been met with utter failure. Sorry dude, but this is not the future of DOA. This might as well be a Subtitled installment, or a reboot – cause this shit has nothing to do with Itagaki’s design.

    •  Well, more like..6 and a half.

  • rurifan

    I keep trying to be hyped for this game, but every time they show gameplay it looks exactly like DOA2-4 complete with the same moves. T^T.

  • Tee Niitris

    I’m not sure I would call “connecting the stages and characters” evolving the series, but it would be cool for each character to have their own assigned stage like in the older fighters. There is just something about a character fighting in their “home atmosphere” that makes the game more interesting.

    Or at least match the # of characters and stages.

  • James Smith

    Making stages more immersive, giving characters more emotion, making it more accessible.
    They’re all really  great goals, the video is actually a good insight into what they were trying to achieve.
    Maybe the feedback from 5 will help them achieve them in 6. 

  • shuyai

    From the trailer(sweat feature, swim/bunnt suit etc) i thought  their goal was boobs and more boobs. That is not a bad thing. not a bad thing

  • I think solid writing does more to cement a character than visual flair.  Arc System Works is the best in the business right now at getting you to feel the emotion from you fighters and that’s done with 2D sprites.  Team Ninja has some really good ideas, but they haven’t really delivered on the character development end.

    I think they kind of missed a great chance with the DoAX games.  They could’ve made it into a true fan service series; as in not just bikini’s but getting to know a little bit about the character’s personalities.  Sort of like that guy you know from work that you don’t really talk to until you hang out with him at a party and you find out he’s pretty cool.  Instead of the generic clips with girls stretching or frolicking on the beach they could have put in some full-on skits.  These sort of things elicit emotion a lot better IMO.  Not so much the sweat and dirt stains or the breast physics.  I suppose I’m expecting too much out of them on that front, though.

    Still, the game looks awesome.  Already pre-ordered.  A great single player will push this to God tier for me.

    • Göran Isacson

       That would honestly have been a good idea… but I guess writing those skits would have taken away important time from designing the butt-bounce mini game. And those scenes of girls feeding each other strawberries.

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