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Phil Larsen
05 Jan, 2007

Dead or Alive: Xtreme 2 Review

360 Review | A promise of all things big and bouncy falls flat.
It’s every male gamer’s dream – to be surrounded by the beautiful busty babes that accompany the art form, pristine and perfect in every possible way. Developers and artists have long been discovering more ways to represent the female population in games, and more often than not they take an impeccable form of unattainable and unrealistic beauty. The fans love it. Which is why they may love Dead or Alive: Xtreme 2. Yes, the fighting femmes from the acclaimed series have taken a vacation once again, ready to frolic in the fun and sun of New Zack Island.

Zack, one of the bad boys from the DOA series, unearths a sunken resort through a rather silly cutscene and opens it to seemingly no one but the ladies from the same license. That’s the last you see of Zack (until the puzzlingly explosive ending); he’s probably carefully monitoring island… security through one of many HD video feeds. Anyway, you begin the game by selecting a character to play as, and start your island getaway with help from Lisa, who acts as a guide/opponent/teammate throughout the introductory sequences. The answer to your question is yes – the game features extraordinary bouncing breasts, a trademark of the DOA series from the very first game. They seem to defy all laws of physics (in size and movement), but apparently that’s half the appeal of DOA. Can’t hurt, right?

Becoming accustomed to the island is an extremely simple task; there isn’t actually any free roaming feature. For an Xbox 360 title this is completely inexcusable. Rather, you simply select which location to travel to via a menu, and once there the corresponding game or activity begins automatically. Considering the island isn’t actually that big, and there aren’t many locations, it makes no sense to completely eliminate free character movement.

There's just nothing more to say.

There's just nothing more to say.
Close
The game is a vacation, nothing more. It lasts 14 days – which may sound like a long time, but we need to consider what comprises of one day. They’re split up into four segments: morning, daytime, evening, and nighttime. Each timeframe can include one, or occasionally two, activities. Considering some games last no more than a minute, it’s entirely possible to blast through one day in five minutes. So yes, the entire game can be completed in one to two hours, depending on how much time is spent browsing in the stores.

What makes the incredibly short-lived experience even worse is the finicky and confusing mini-games. On offer are several beach activities, including Beach Flags, Volleyball, Jet Ski Racing, and a ride on the world’s deadliest waterslide – where success is only achieved when you actually stay on the slide, as opposed to falling off and launching into a jungle. There are also a few pool-related games, including Water-hopping (jump across the pool on floating pads), Tug-O-War, and the quirky Butt Battle, featuring you and another stunningly perfect female battling posteriors in an attempt to knock the other off a floating platform. The biggest problem with all of these games is the win/lose structure. After reading the pitiful instructions for controls, you’re expected to awkwardly master the button-pressing or stick movements for victory. More often than not you’ll begin and give one of the moves a try, only to find out it didn’t quite register – and by this time you’ll have been defeated. Game over. There’s no second chance, no practice mode – if you can’t get the fiddly controls down in less than approximately three attempts, there’s one of fourteen days gone.

The biggest two activities are Beach Volleyball (although the “volleyball” has been scrapped from the title, it’s now just “Xtreme!”) and Jet Ski racing (a new addition). Volleyball is downright broken, primarily being a random mash of buttons while attempting to form some kind of reliable defence. The B button is used to set, and the A to return or spike. It might have worked reasonably well were it not for the terrible camera angle. It’s permanently fixed off to one side and focused on your own team, so the opposing team is halfway cut off by the edge of the screen – including when the ball is on their side. This leads to random button mashing as the ball flies in from the right side of the screen, because you have no indication of exactly where the ball is going to land. You spend more time watching the victory scenes of the girls jumping around than actually playing.

Xtreme-ly hot.

Xtreme-ly hot.
Close
Jet Ski racing is the most in-depth and entertaining aspect of the entire game. You’ll compete in races against up to three girls, and tear around the courses complete with ramps for performing rather spectacular tricks. The X button can also be used for “flair”, which nets bonus points and a super sexy pose. Nice. The skis handle reasonably well and are good fun, but again the lack of free roaming is a serious black mark. There could have been a large island to explore, ripping around on a custom ski, but no such feature is present. The courses are random, and also somewhat repetitive – changing only a few turns or paths in some instances and branding it “new”. Winning a race earns quite a large amount of cash (all games earn cash - if you win), which can then be spent at one of the three stores on the island.

Available for your shopping pleasures are the Sports Shop, Accessory Shop and a random store of goodies, Zack of all Trades. Dress up your favourite girl with hats, sunglasses and cosmetics with the Accessory Shop, and buy presents and similarly useless items (a toaster oven and wind chimes being dull examples) from Zack of all Trades. The Sports Shop is the most important, as it sells new watercraft with different specifications, as well as fifteen pages worth of bikinis. Compelling stuff, shopping for swimwear. There’s a casino to visit at nighttime, as well as a bonus store known as the Crystal Boutique – which sells special gear via Xbox Live.

Unfortunately the game’s length will come primarily from mass item collecting. That’s the general goal, to play through the vacation over and over again with different girls, and maxing out their inventory. You’ll trade items with other girls by using the gift-giving feature, and upon returning to the hotel every night, someone (usually Zack) will have dropped off a surprise gift. The point of gift-giving is to gain favour and make friends with the other girls – they all seem to be taking a vacation at the same time, on the same island, but they all hate each other.

It doesn't matter who wins, just keep playing.

It doesn't matter who wins, just keep playing.
Close
Relationship-building is an attempt to add longevity to the gameplay, and while it can take several hours to achieve desirable results, there’s no indication of progress and no dynamic tasks required. Most of the friendship seems based on giving gifts to the different girls – gifts which may be suited to their particular tastes. Use the white gift wrapping for the girl with the white hair; give a French dessert to Helena; try a Japanese drum with Ayane, and so on. That’s all there is to it, and eventually you can ask different girls to pair up and play volleyball, or one of the other hum-drum minigames. Considering volleyball isn’t any fun, and you’re always guaranteed opponents in Jet Ski racing, there’s not much incentive to make friends.

What could make DOAX2 appealing? The women, plain and simple. They look great, and especially so considering their surroundings. You can start it up and expect to spend a good few hours staring at the virtual vixens, almost as if you were on the island with them. There are actually options to “relax” or take a walk on the beach, which prompt minute-long cutscenes of the girls showing off, with absolutely no purpose or objective. We reported just recently that games have possibly evolved past the simple notion of fun, and can form complex, psychological experiences. If you think that taking a laid-back vacation with these lovely ladies is your idea of a pleasurable experience, don’t hesitate to pick it up. If you’d rather play than watch, DOAX2 probably isn’t for you.
The Score
With such a desirable concept, it's a shame the game hasn't been fleshed out to any great extent. Hopefully future instalments (if any) can provide higher levels of interaction and playability.
Looking to buy this game right now? PALGN recommends www.Play-Asia.com.

Related Dead or Alive: Xtreme 2 Content

Itagaki defends DOAX2
24 Jan, 2007 Reveals love for Wii also.
DOA producer hit with sexual harassment suit
09 Nov, 2006 Itagaki working hard.
E3 2006: Dead or Alive Xtreme images
12 May, 2006 We blush just looking at them.
42 Comments
7 years ago
I played this like two weeks ago, suffice to say it got pretty boring within the hour.
7 years ago
Lol...7.5 for graphics when he rated Red Steel as an 8.0, haha what a joke! icon_lol.gif

Regardless i'll pick this up in a couple of weeks, my g/f has been egging me to get it aswell. Also $64.95 as a release price is good.
7 years ago
^Wouldn't it be based on the system its on, not on all systems? So in other words, RS is an 8 compared to other Wii titles and DOAX2 is a 7.5 compared to other 360 titles.

Otherwise you could go "LOL... 7.5 for DOAX2 when New Super Mario Bros got a 9!* What a joke!"



*I don't actually know what score NSMB got for graphics. Whatever, though, point still stands.
7 years ago
yea i know what scale he's going by, DOAX2's graphics are some of the best on the system (yes technically) and Red Steel's aren't! I was amazed how crisp this looked in HD, sand, water and animation are the best i've seen!

Anyways just forget I said anything, it just sux for me that Phil reviewed it. Hope he doesn't review Lost Planet (please god!!) it might only get a 2.0 or something.
7 years ago
Wow, just wow. You look for any possibility at all to bitch about 360 reviews. DOAX2's graphics are some of the best on the system? Look out Gears you have a new contender for the throne. For how sparse the environments are in the game the graphics SHOULD look a hell of a lot better.
7 years ago
ugh the boot wrote
yea i know what scale he's going by, DOAX2's graphics are some of the best on the system (yes technically) and Red Steel's aren't! I was amazed how crisp this looked in HD, sand, water and animation are the best i've seen!

Anyways just forget I said anything, it just sux for me that Phil reviewed it. Hope he doesn't review Lost Planet (please god!!) it might only get a 2.0 or something.
I'm taking it your gay by the fat their breasts look like water baloons trapped in a woman's body. icon_lol.gif
7 years ago
I like Phil's reviews.It's easy to see he puts alot of work into them(they're generally quite long) and while they sometimes go against against the grain of popular opinion he backs up what he says with facts.He's an asset to the crew.
7 years ago
NeoSanity wrote
ugh the boot wrote
yea i know what scale he's going by, DOAX2's graphics are some of the best on the system (yes technically) and Red Steel's aren't! I was amazed how crisp this looked in HD, sand, water and animation are the best i've seen!

Anyways just forget I said anything, it just sux for me that Phil reviewed it. Hope he doesn't review Lost Planet (please god!!) it might only get a 2.0 or something.
I'm taking it your gay by the fat their breasts look like water baloons trapped in a woman's body. icon_lol.gif
Was your comment supposed to make sense? Because it doesn't.
7 years ago
I believe he was implying that Ugh must be homosexual and consequently unable to appreciate realistic female bodies, as the character models in fact (misspelt as 'fat' above) look like they have water balloons (misspelt as 'baloons' above) imprisoned within them, yet in spite of this Ugh believes the game has excellent graphics.
7 years ago
Spanca wrote
I believe he was implying that Ugh must be homosexual and consequently unable to appreciate realistic female bodies, as the character models in fact (misspelt as 'fat' above) look like they have water balloons (misspelt as 'baloons' above) imprisoned within them, yet in spite of this Ugh believes the game has excellent graphics.
Urgh....Thanks for that

icon_confused.gif
7 years ago
The reviewer may have missed the point of the game, but the review still covered everything I was interested in reading.

This is the killer game for me. I will buy a x360 just to play this. The review, altho negative in tone, essentially tole me that everything I was hoping would be in there is. As such it has only cemented my resolve, and made me look forward to getting addicted to it even more.
7 years ago
Gameplay wise, I think it's better than the original. A lot more variety in things you can do. That being said, the boobs are quite out there and it really takes away from the appeal of the game.
7 years ago
^care to elaborate why this is a 'killer game'.......(hedanny)

EDIT-damn you sunrider go......ride.......a sun.
7 years ago
Yea cuz all i looked at were the boobs! icon_rolleyes.gif NeoSanity everyone knows you're a moron, you don't need to keep reminding them, i'm not gonna bother with your post/s. And Lol me gay! haha! I guess gay guys are into fake boobs!! Lol....like I said...a moron!! icon_lol.gif

And I didn't say they were the best, I said some of the best (along with GOW and Viva Pinata). Yea the environments are sparse because it's set on a frickin' beach! What else did you need? Another couple of million grains of sand? Or maybe they should've textured the sand more?

Is it so wrong of me to think that DOAX2 deserves more than a 7.5 for graphics and for Red Steel to deserve less than an 8? It is my opinion after all.
7 years ago
I would say asking higher than 7.5 for DOAX2 for graphics is a bit much. As for Red Steel I have no idea why that's even being discussed but if youmust know I agree with you, I don't think it should be an 8 because I think the Wii can do a lot better than that.
7 years ago
^ Well that's kinda the point I was making....it's not really the fact that it was scored 7.5 (i'm cool with that) it's just that if he can rate a game like Red Steel as an 8.0 on the graphics scale i'm just wondering what he didn't like about it so much? Yea the boobs...obviously...but the rest of the game is solid and looks the highest resolution of any game running in hd i've seen so far, the lines are so clean and sharp and the animation is bloody fantastic!

And the reason I brang Red Steel into it was because of his Red Steel review a couple of weeks ago which he scored an 8 on (a game i used to own) where that game was lucky I didn't break it and the Wii!

Anyways nothing against you personally Phil....I just don't seem to agree much with your views on games, but I agree with Jibbs, you are very articulate and do back up stuff with good examples (always great in reviews). So nothing personal mate.
7 years ago
somehow, i don't think "sparse" was the word he meant, reading his post, i think he means that the levels are small, and as a result, you'd expect the detail to be high, as there is less to concentrate on.

which is also to be expected, and quite frankly i don't see why this is a bad thing. if it was a case of a small environment looking like sh!t, then it's a cause for concern.

on the whole, this title doesn't interest me.
it might've done if the games were fully realised, and perhaps at least made the attempt at disguising that this is merely fan-service.

i was honestly expecting more from it. imo the first DOA was atrocious, but because of the boob-factor sold by the truckload, made a lot of money allowing for a larger budget and the subsequent fighters in the series are pretty good. i was hoping that the same could've been said of DOAX. guess i was only fooling myself.
7 years ago
Yeah, that is what I was getting at, well a bit of both really. Small environments coupled with not much in them should mean amazing detail, but in Xtreme 2 it doesn't, it looks on par with a lot of other 360 games. If anything some of the little things seem entirely overlooked.
7 years ago
What advantages does that game have over porn?
7 years ago
the game has 2 joysticks.
7 years ago
I honestly don't see the appeal in this game at all.
7 years ago
Marka wrote
What advantages does that game have over porn?
Are you implying it's on par? icon_unsure.gif
7 years ago
ugh the boot wrote
Yea cuz all i looked at were the boobs! icon_rolleyes.gif NeoSanity everyone knows you're a moron, you don't need to keep reminding them, i'm not gonna bother with your post/s. And Lol me gay! haha! I guess gay guys are into fake boobs!! Lol....like I said...a moron!! icon_lol.gif
Umm...calm down, it was a joke, note the laughing emoticon. It was just something I noticed in the game.
7 years ago
I guess the real comparison is how it looks compared to DOA4. It's out almost a year later and whilst there's a bunch of character with many many bikinis there isn't really many areas. So perhaps it deserves to be criticised graphically for such a limited amount of areas in which case 7.5 compared to DOA4's 8.5 for graphics is probably fair.
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  Pre-order or buy:
    PALGN recommends: www.Play-Asia.com

Australian Release Date:
  Out Now
European Release Date:
  Out Now
Publisher:
  Tecmo
Developer:
  Tecmo

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