22, 2003 (USA)
> Team Ninja has created a well deserved fan base for the Dead
or Alive series. Shin Force recognizes this with a Dead
or Alive shrine within the Elite
Series section. Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball (DOAX)
is Team Ninja's followup to DOA3, which
graced the Xbox's launch. Basically, it's beach volleyball with side activities
like gambling, sun bathing, hopping game, character interaction and shopping.
> Without a doubt, DOAX has the smoothest animation, best looking character
models, and most realistic locales I've seen in a game. Team Ninja
every last ounce of light source shading, real-time shadows and water effects
out of the Box. This is not to say other games aren't technically
awesome in the graphics department, rather DOAX has something every guy
can appreciate that puts it over the top.
> I would have to say that the 'Private Beach' is my favorite place to
visit or play in. Picking the best looking character, on the other
hand, isn't quite so simple. In the long run though, the babe for
me is Kasumi. My only beef is in certain situations the view
can be manipulated, but not entirely to my taste.
> The main gameplay aspect in DOAX is beach volleyball, of course.
Although I can't say Team Ninja has exceeded AM2's Beach Spikers
this department, it's clear that they've found an equally high plain of
their own. Whereas Beach Spikers felt mainly ultra-tight and
arcade like, DOAX is just as tight and has a certain realism about it without
> For volleyball, you have attack and receive buttons which react according
to your positions and the pressure you use. Naturally spiking, blocking,
serving and formations are available. You earn Zack bucks for winning
and bonuses for good plays. When you're at the pool, you can play
the hopping game. This is very simple and yields much needed Zack
bucks as well. All you do is jump long or short across the pool on
the floating cushions as fast as possible. Simple yet fun and addicting.
> Now all the activities you engage in pass the day. Your vacation
lasts for 14 days and it's purely up to you how you spend that time.
If you're not doing well in volleyball though, you're teammate is likely
to abandon you. At this point you'll need to entice another beauty
to join your team by giving her the proper gifts (one she'll like) and
asking. Some girls hate others so it may be pointless, depending
on who your main character is.
> I had no idea what to expect from this department, but I'm happy to report
the music is right on. It's mostly happy, rhythmic, and nicely environmental.
It features a host of popular artists including Christine Aguilera.
Yeah there's a few songs I can live without, so the option to remove them
from your playlist is wonderful. However, there's always the ability
to rip your own tunes and put them into the playlist of DOAX, thanks to
the Box's included HDD.
> The sound effects are right on. Spike the ball and you'll hear
it. Plunge into the pool, and you'll not just see it! Much
like other DOA's, the characters talk in Japanese and you get to read the
subtitles. There's actually quite a bit of chatter going on during
games, most of which is character reference and things like [insert Japanese
accent] "nice spike".
> Choose from Kasumi. Hitomi, Ayane, Tina, Leifang, Helena, Christie, and
newcomer Lisa. Each has a beauty of her own, unlike any other game
you've enjoyed. Play volleyball in the morning, afternoon and dusk
at various tropical locations on Zack island. Using earned Zack dollars,
shop at various stores for a plethora of items, swim suits and accessories.
Sun bathe or play pool hopping to pass the beautiful days. Try your
luck at Roulette, Slot Machines, Blackjack, and Poker in Zack's Casino.
Don't forget to watch some Tecmo trailer videos before you go to bed.
I'll tell you this, the test of an addictive game is whether it can entice
you stay up past 5 am playing it -- check! (-_-
> If you want a tight game... of volleyball, hot babes and the option
to do some adventure activities like shopping, sun tanning and gambling,
then DOAX is for you. Mint graphics, sound and gameplay. If
you're not interested in beach volleyball, then the adventure portion probably
9.5 | Graphics: 10 | Control: 9.5 | Sound: 9.5 | Fun: 9.0