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Dead or Alive

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Critic Reviews 85% add missing review

Computer and Video Games (CVG) ( ) (100%)

The detail on the characters is fantastic and they move super-smoothly. If you own a Saturn, chances are you appreciate the magnificence of the Virtua Fighter series. That means that you'll love Dead or Alive to bits, no doubt about it. This is an essential buy for import Saturn gamers, and hopefully Acclaim's UK version will be great too. You won't be disappointed with this fantastic game at all.

Dec 1997 · SEGA Saturn · read review

Consoles Plus (95 out of 100) (95%)

Dead or Alive est tout simplement le meilleur jeu de baston en 3D, dans le genre combat sans armes ni boules de feu...

Dec 1997 · SEGA Saturn · read review

Shin Force (9.5 out of 10) (95%)

Model 2 conversion... Virtua Fighter-like gameplay... Silky smooth Saturn 3D Animation... Arcade perfection! A definite winner! A must buy! Need I say more?...

Oct 12th, 1997 · SEGA Saturn · read review

High Voltage Online (95 out of 100) (95%)

Amazingly there’s a 3D fighting game on the Saturn that’s as good as both Virtua Fighter 2 and Fighters Megamix ‘ and it’s not made by Sega! Don’t be put off by the fact this is an import title ‘ the only Japanese text is on the character select screen. Everything else, including all option screens, are in English. It just makes it all the more baffling why this wasn’t released out of Japan. Anyway if you’ve got a Saturn then get this. I have nothing more to say.

Oct 9th, 2006 · SEGA Saturn · read review

PSM (4.5 out of 5) (90%)

In every aspect, Dead or Alive is a step above the norm. Graphically, it looks simply beautiful and features some of the more impressive polygonal models you will ever see on the PlayStation. The ease of controls enables you to quickly learn the basics, while the vast amount of moves and strategies provides more than enough replay. Tecmo deserves big marks for such a remarkable home conversion.

May 1998 · PlayStation

Digital Extremes (9 out of 10) (90%)

In conclusion, Tecmo Japan's "Dead or Alive," despite its flaws, is THE Best 3D fighting game for the Sega Saturn, and should be something every Saturn owner should check out (if not buy). I have not been so impressed with a game since Square's godly "Tobal 2." This game just screams "Quality," and the 60 frames-per-second, lightning fast, Hi-res fighting action should please any fighting fan.

1997 · SEGA Saturn · read review

All Game Guide ( ) (90%)

Despite the over-the-top mammary motion, Dead or Alive is a top-notch title that challenges Virtua Fighter 2 in terms of raw, overall depth and enjoyment. If you can find this in the Arcade (not likely -- American distribution was extremely limited), give this one a go.

1998 · Arcade · read review

Hey Poor Player ( ) (90%)

The most impressive part of Dead or Alive without any doubt is the beautiful visuals. It uses the Saturn’s often ignored high-resolution mode (just like Virtua Fighter 2 actually) combining a 3D play field with detailed 2D backgrounds and it looks just stunning, yes even better than Virtua Fighter 2 itself! This is helped by the then revolutionary Tru-Motion animation technique, which makes the character models look amazingly lifelike. Alongside the usual range of grunts, groans and screams are a host of excellent tunes that suit the game perfectly. Dead or Alive might be a bit on the easy side for more seasoned gamers but there is always the two-player mode to give your friends an ass-kicking instead if you get bored with it. Dead or Alive is without a doubt one the most impressive games in the Saturn’s wonderful library and yet another reason to own a Pro Action Replay cartridge!

Nov 24th, 2016 · SEGA Saturn · read review

Mega Fun (86 out of 100) (86%)

Das vom Charakterdesign und den unterschiedlichen Moves sehr stark an Virtua Fighter 2 erinnernde Dead or Alive glĂ€nzt durch seine hervorragende Spielbarkeit. Grafisch wurden die KĂ€mpfe unglaublich schnell und sauber dargestellt. Dabei wirken die KĂ€mpferanimationen samt weiblicher Wippbewegungen durch exzellentes Motion Capture einfach genial. Die fantastischen Lichteffekte, Gouraud Shading und in Echtzeit berechnete LichteinflĂŒsse setzen neue Glanzlichter im Vergleich zur Saturn-Version. Doch wurde man in der Spielhalle noch mit dreidimensionalen HintergrĂŒnden samt Animationen verwöhnt, so muß der PlayStation-Besitzer leider mit zweidimensionalen Bitmap-Grafiken vorlieb nehmen. Im Vergleich zu Spitzentiteln Ă  la Tekken 3 vermißt der PrĂŒgelproll jedoch die FĂŒlle von Schlagvarianten, was die Langzeitmotivation natĂŒrlich etwas senkt. Insgesamt gesehen ist Dead or Alive ein technisch hervorragender Klopper, dem aber kleine MĂ€ngel im Detail den Weg an den PrĂŒgelzenit versperren.

Jun 1998 · PlayStation

Absolute Playstation (86 out of 100) (86%)

If you are a fighting game fan this one won’t disappoint you. If you are like me and don’t play fighting games too often, this one will definitely grab your attention, especially in 2 player mode. Great graphics and decent sound effects really make this game fun. With all those different modes, reasonable number of characters, 84 different costumes, and hundreds of moves, I don’t know how this game could get boring. I definitely recommend adding it to your library.

Jul 1998 · PlayStation · read review

IGN (8.5 out of 10) (85%)

The gratuitous sexism aside, Dead or Alive is a polished product that pushes Tecmo to the front of the fighting game, hot on the heels of Namco for the title. This is one game you'll definitely have to try and buy. However, if it wants to compete with the big boys, the company'll have to realize that plain old fighting just ain't enough any more. But after seeing this game, Dead or Alive 2 is looking better and better.

Mar 27th, 1998 · PlayStation · read review

Mega Fun (85 out of 100) (85%)

Bei dieser Nasenbrecherei wurde zwar geklaut, was das Zeug hergibt (einige Hintergrundlayouts sind fast identisch mit denen aus Virtua Fighter 2), doch der Zweck heiligt bekanntlich die Mittel. Dead or Alive ist eine in jeglicher Hinsicht superbe Klopperei. Fangen wir bei der Grafik an. Die durchgehende HiRes-Darstellung gepaart mit den exzellenten Motion Capture-Animationen ist die reinste Wucht, zumal alles so unverschĂ€mt sauber aussieht. Spielerisch bietet der PrĂŒgler 100%iges Arcade-Feeling, sprich die Fights sind Ă€ußerst schnell und zudem nach wenigen Sekunden vorbei. In diesem Punkt haben die Designer meines Erachtens ein bißchen ĂŒberzogen. Man hat keine Gelegenheit. sich vom Gegner zu entfernen, um einmal kurz Luft zu holen bzw. eine Attacke vorzubereiten. Statt dessen heißt die Devise „Ran an den Mann und niedermachen!“ Wer sich an diesem hohen Tempo nicht stört, erhĂ€lt mit diesem technisch erstklassigen Werk eine willkommene Herausforderung.

Nov 1997 · SEGA Saturn

Video Game Critic, The (B+) (83%)

The breathtaking background graphics feature photorealistic city skylights, tropical islands, and industrial areas at sunset. The music is equally good, and it varies greatly from stage to stage. Playing modes include training, team battle, survival, time attack, versus, and tournament, but my favorite is the "Kumite Mode", which pits you against a series of computer opponents. Since the minimum number of battles in Kumite mode is 30, you may want to set the match point to "one round" before undertaking this.

Jan 2nd, 2004 · PlayStation · read review

Thunderbolt Games (8 out of 10) (80%)

There are two things that really stand out in the fighting game Dead or Alive for the PlayStation One. First of all you cannot help but be impressed by the sumptuous graphics, that come a close second to Tekken 3 for title of tastiest looking psx fighter. Secondly, you'll notice that unlike many other fighting games, this one builds its fighting engine around grabs, reversals and counters.

Aug 19th, 2004 · PlayStation · read review

MAN!AC (80 out of 100) (80%)

Ohne Kampfrhythmus seid Ihr verloren: Flotte Keilerei in verminten Todeszonen mit effektiver Grafik, aber ohne taktische Manöver.

Feb 24th, 2019 · PlayStation · read review

Computer and Video Games (CVG) ( ) (80%)

Dead Or Alive is lots of fun, especially if you've got two decent gamers playing. You really need total concentration if you're going to have a chance of winning, and you have to constantly plan in advance. The one-player game is marred by the fact that the age-old fighting game trick works - constant jump kicks will beat any opponent on any difficulty level, ruining the feeling of fighting real people. But still, anyone into fighting games MUST get this as well as Tekken 3 - it's more of a skill test than a memory test.

Jul 1998 · PlayStation

Video Games (78 out of 100) (78%)

Die einzelnen Techniken wurden choreographisch im Gegensatz zur Tekken-Serie, Bloody Roar und Soul Blade nicht so schön herausgearbeitet und in Szene gesetzt. Ehe man sich versieht, wird aus dem geplanten taktischen Angriff ein wildes, panisches Button-Smashing, da ihr den trickreichen und in Bruchteilen von Sekunden auf Euch herein prasselnden Aktionen der CPU meist nichts entgegenzusetzen habt. Es kommt oft vor, daß man gegen einen KĂ€mpfer 20mal und öfter hintereinander verliert - auf ganz normalem Schwierigkeitsgrad Best of Three wohlgemerkt! Frust ist somit in DoA garantiert. Das Gameplay ist auch nicht annĂ€hernd so motivierend wie in den Namco- und Virgin-Referenztiteln. Gegen ein Tekken 3 oder Bloody Roar hat Tecmo hiermit keine Chance. Beat‘em Up-Profis, die Streß lieben, könnten sich bis zum PAL-Release von Tekken 3 im Oktober jedoch bestens die Zeit vertreiben, denn Moves gibt‘s schließlich genug.

Jun 1998 · PlayStation

GameSpot (7.3 out of 10) (73%)

Combining fantastic graphics and above-average gameplay, Dead or Alive is a fun and challenging fighting game well worth picking up. If there's one thing the PlayStation has a lot of, it's fighting games. Good fighting games on the other hand are a different story. Tecmo just happens to have one of those different stories though, and it goes by the name of Dead or Alive.

Apr 7th, 1998 · PlayStation · read review

GameSpot (6.8 out of 10) (68%)

Dead or Alive is another one of those weird arcade fighting games that you've heard of, and maybe even seen, but never bothered to play. Tecmo's fighter, made using the same hardware that brought Virtua Fighter 2 to life, plays similarly to VF2 but uses a slightly improved fighting engine. The result is a game that plays pretty well, translates to the Saturn well, and ultimately, makes a more interesting home game than the arcade version ever hoped to be.

Mar 4th, 1998 · SEGA Saturn · read review

Power Unlimited (6.7 out of 10) (67%)

Dead Or Alive is een degelijk vechtspel. De graphics zien er goed uit, het vechten gaat prima en de characters zijn pro's met ieder een eigen setje moves. Het probleem is dat dat tegenwoordig gewoonweg niet genoeg meer is om te boeien. Er zijn zo veel betere games op de markt dat ik geen enkele reden zie om tijd te verspillen aan een middelmatige beat'em up.

Jun 1998 · PlayStation

TigerChainsaw (6.6 out of 10) (66%)

Dead or Alive presents an interesting combat technique with the hold button. It works well and offers something different than just a “guard”. I had a tough time pulling off any combos and just resorted to button mashing. If you like fighting games with characters’ stories, look elsewhere, but if you like big boobs that smack the girls in the face, Dead or Alive is your game.

2020 · PlayStation · read review

Player Reviews

A great start to a great fighting series

The Good
I really liked the graphics in this game, they looked very good for the time in 1998, the sound and music is very good, and the controls are very responsive, although I am a button masher, the controls do respond very well.

The Bad
The only thing I didn't like was the amount of characters, a few more would of been nice. Other then that, that is all that I didn't really care for about Dead or Alive.

The Bottom Line
Dead or Alive was developed and published by Tecmo, it was released in 1998 Dead or Alive is the first of the Dead or Alive series. A lot of the features in this game is what made the Dead or Alive series popular. The combat style in the game is pretty realistic, at least for the time, the character design looks very good, and then finally there is one more thing that makes hardcore video gamers dream naughty thoughts, that is right the half naked women, and the oh so sweet boobie bouncing...OHHH BABY!

The game is worth a try, and if you have never played the game, you should check it out. The sequels are great as well.

by AaronGamer (29) on Feb 22nd, 2010 · PlayStation

Plus 44 player ratings without reviews

Contributors to this Entry

Critic reviews added by Tim Janssen, Alsy, Kohler 86, Lain Crowley, Scaryfun, Patrick Bregger, Alaka, Big John WV, Yearman, mikewwm8, PCGamer77, vedder, Seth Newman.