Dead or Alive Ultimate Xbox

  • Publisher: Tecmo
  • Release Date: Oct 26, 2004

Generally favorable reviews - based on 64 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 52 out of 64
  2. Negative: 0 out of 64
Buy On
  1. AceGamez
    The visuals are absolutely stunning, there are dozens of things to unlock (including some things that were not originally in DOA2) and the online play has been implemented flawlessly, giving us, for the first time, an online 3D fighter that actually feels like a group of players at an arcade and even includes tournaments and championships.
  2. The gorgeous graphics and scantily dressed women will lure gamers into Dead or Alive Ultimate, but it's the game play that will keep fighters trading blows for months.
  3. Each of the moves that you want to execute performs flawlessly and looks great at the same time.
  4. So easy to pick up and play that you are bound to have fun, even if you don't know what you are doing. You can stumble your way into some of the most excellent combos you can see without memorization or perfect timing.
  5. The extreme difficulty of Team Ninja games, combined with jaw-dropping visuals and technically sound gameplay programming is what makes them so special. DOAU is a masterpiece for the reasons aforementioned, but also due to the fact that they did something that only one other developer has done so far - put 3D fighting online on the Xbox.
  6. The new countering system (realistically, the old one) is better, the environments are fantastic, and the addition of online play makes this game fuller than all of its predecessors.
  7. 93
    Two games for the price of one is quite the steal.
  8. 92
    The greatly improved arenas, the plethora of costumes, the addition of slope moves, and the implementation of Xbox Live play makes DOA Ultimate one of the best games this year.
  9. The character models, environments and dare I say it 'boob physics' are the best ever seen in a fighting game, and maybe in any game out on the market today.
  10. But the real star of this 2 disc set is DOA 2 Ultimate, which takes a game that I thought blew away the competition back then, and gives it a hypershot in the arm. It has become by far the best in the DOA series.
  11. DOA Ultimate offers accessible gameplay and awesome eye candy. Throw in Xbox Live support and it easily becomes the only Xbox fighting game you actually need to own.
  12. While lacking the sheer depth of either "Virtua Fighter" or "Soul Calibur," DOA's fighting system offers the fastest 3D fighting around with a slick reversal system tuned for players of all abilities. [Oct 2004, p.108]
  13. The balance achieved between depth and accessibility is highlighted perfectly by online play, and it's online where you'll 'ultimately' reap the rewards this game has to offer.
  14. The Live support is really what makes this game as fun as it is.
  15. But behind the stunning visuals, the somehow very moving intro movie, and the bouncing breasts of the DOA girls lies a solid, addictive and extremely entertaining fighter that deserves a place in anybody's collection – and the Live modes are the icing on the cake.
  16. Game Informer
    Like the name implies, this is the ultimate entry in the DOA series, and a must-have for fighting game fans ready to test their skills online. [Dec 2004, p.182]
  17. It has the best online play of any fighting title on the market. If you dig fighting, you'll really like Dead or Alive Ultimate.
  18. Dead or Alive Ultimate kicks the ass squarely. It is a fast-paced, beautiful fighting game with an excellent online mode to boot.
  19. 90
    The gameplay is fast, furious and responsive, with some incredible context sensitive throws and counters.
  20. The addition of online multiplayer makes this the most complete entry in the franchise, yet. Being one of the few fighting games to strike a perfect blend of accessibility and depth, DOAU almost guarantees that players of all skill levels will get plenty of enjoyment out of it.
  21. 90
    Team Ninja have built upon what was already a solid and addictive foundation with an online integration which makes DoA:U the most complete fighting game package on any platform. [Score with Xbox Live]
  22. 90
    The brilliant level design in this game doesn't take center stage when it comes to eye-popping visuals. There are now many more reasons to drool over your favorite female fighter.
  23. 90
    There's an awful lot of gaming to be had here. While the updated version of the first Dead or Alive is only worthwhile for nostalgia's sake, the revamped DOA2 is a graphical masterpiece, and a blast to play online.
  24. It sports the most fully featured online multiplayer mode of any fighting game yet, which is a huge accomplishment.
  25. Official Xbox Magazine
    A respectful nod to the past with the luxury of the present. [Holiday 2004, p.66]
  26. The accessibility to beginners both games, excellent graphics and sound, and the amount of gameplay modes make this a worthy addition to a fan of the fighting genre.
  27. 88
    It is rather odd given all the overhauls done to these two games that Team Ninja didn't see fit to localize the voiceovers. Luckily there are English subtitles to help you understand what is going on pre and post fight.
  28. Pelit (Finland)
    Calling a revised version of a five-year-old game Ultimate is a stretch, even if you do add a flawless multiplayer mode and propably the most beautiful graphics seen on Xbox. [Mar. 05]
  29. Character models are another stand out point. The characters look fantastic and perform animations brilliantly.
  30. The fighting system has been tweaked, leaving it as one of the smoothest rides on the console, and the visuals really set it apart from almost any other game created.
  31. DOA Ultimate is just that, an ultimate DOA game that caters to the fans. It's not the pinnacle of fighting games but it looks great, plays awesome over Live with plenty of options, and is accessible to novices.
  32. The online aspect is extremely well done and probably makes Dead or Alive Ultimate one of the best Xbox Live games currently available. This, plus the addition of over 100 unlockable costumes, a huge gallery, and other goodies, definitely makes this the ultimate Dead or Alive game.
  33. With tons of costumes, character information, CG stills and a plethora of extras you'll want to play this game for a long time to come.
  34. Pure fan service for Xbox owners and Live users who may wish to have all DOA games on their chosen system.
  35. A package that fans of the series will want to snatch up immediately, though people with a casual interest in the genre may not find enough new content to interest them.
  36. Dead or Alive is full of mojo, from the scantily clad, and beautiful ladies to the awesome and cool moves this game is just crying out Mojo.
  37. Play Magazine
    This is one fine-looking brawler, from the animations to the active, gorgeously detailed tiered arenas to the scintillating effects. [Dec 2004, p.56]
  38. Computer Games Magazine
    The best online fighting game released to date.[Feb 2005, p.NP-9]
  39. Brings the first two games to the Xbox warts and all, with a boatload of extra content that'll take hours to unlock. Live subscribers and fighting-game fans should be sure to grab a copy, but if you didn't like DOA or DOA2 before now, this isn't going to change your mind.
  40. Varied play modes such as tag and survival, plus countless unlockable items, add further appeal. But the lack of new moves or characters is disappointing.
  41. It's exactly as the name describes - the ultimate incarnation of the game so far.
  42. Tecmo has once again shown other developers how much graphical splendour can be squeezed out of the Xbox.
  43. More than just a nostalgic look at the early history of the franchise; instead Team Ninja has somehow managed to kick the fighting genre into the online age.
  44. Cheat Code Central
    The online play is the smoothest of any fighting game ever to have an online option. Players will be able to play with out the constant lag as found in the few other online fighting games.
  45. 80
    It's a better version of a game that was already quite good, now made great with extra unlockables, refined presentation, and mostly excellent online play. For fans of 3D fighters, there won't be a better title released in the genre this year.
  46. A beautiful, balanced fighter, and a wealth of multiplayer options earns DOA the ultimate respect.
  47. 80
    Truly the best version of Dead or Alive - but it is not without its faults.
  48. A blast! The online virtual arcade is the best possible setup for an online fighting game to date. In addition, the sheer number of gameplay modes and unlockable content is outstanding.
  49. It's great that Live now has two decent fighters in one package for people to play but it's a shame the entire package wasn't overhauled.
  50. Pretty and comprehensive but - with the exception of Live play - feels a little outdated. [GamesMaster]
  51. 75
    If the appeal of its gameplay has worn thin, as it likely has for most fighting fans in 2004, then all the gorgeous graphics and new costumes and online play won't overcome that fact.
  52. It's a stunning looking, fast-paced and enjoyable beat 'em up, but it lacks much of the depth and balance of its peers.
  53. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    It's not deal-breaker, but DOA suffers from an intermittent case of the laggies. [Jan 2005, p.137]
  54. Entertaining, but not for the hardcore fighting fan. Every move is very easy to pull off, it's more a matter of learning the best combos, and what each character will throw at you so you can properly defend yourself.
  55. Xbox Nation Magazine
    An above-average brawler and can certainly provide entertainment when consumed in short spurts, but it simply lacks the sophistication to become a contender of the fighting-game throne. [Dec 2004, p.80]
  56. Edge Magazine
    This is no true sequel, nor is there the intent or transformative change to suggest that it could've been. The result, however, is no less appreciated – lavish, generous and a step to the left of the standard follow-up. [March 2005, p.88]
  57. games(TM)
    As good as your broadband connection... When everything in Dead or Alive Ultimate works, it's worth an eight, possibly even a nine. However, when it doesn't, you're looking at a five. [March 2005, p.98]
  58. If you have Xbox Live, then let the good times roll and be prepared to get pasted by the world's best players. A lot more could have been added.
  59. Dead or Alive 3 is the better game overall, but for fans of nostalgia and those desperate to beat each other up over Xbox Live, Dead or Alive Ultimate is as good as it's going to get right now.
  60. netjak
    Like a really hot looking Mercedes with only an AM radio, no cruise control, and cloth seats. It looks great, and it's fun to drive for a bit, but without all those sweet extras that are offered with virtually every other luxury sedan out there, it loses its charm rather quickly.
  61. The cosmetic changes made to "Dead or Alive 2" do provide a level of intensity most beat 'em ups cannot reach. After the first few hours though, the wow factor will decline, leaving very little else in its place.
  62. 60
    Did we really need a third version of Dead or Alive 2? Probably not, and we definitely didn't need more DOA 1. But, for diehard fight fans and online junkies, Ultimate is worth a look.
  63. The 3-D graphics, though impressive, have changed little, and the fighting characters remain pretty much the same.
  64. A slightly enhanced collection of two aged fighting games that may look prettier and be playable online, but unlike the girl's chest size the game play just falls flat.

Awards & Rankings

#28 Most Discussed Xbox Game of 2004
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 27 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 14
  2. Negative: 2 out of 14
  1. Apr 5, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. 6 Word review: Great for baby-stepping into DOA fighting.

    If you have an XBox and willing want to try DOA, this is the game. The biggest purchase will be for DOA2. Looking back to DOA 3 & 4, this game will help many newcomers to the DOA series. The basics off all DOA games will stem back from this game: attacks, throws and holds all stem back to this game. THERE IS AN EASY MODE! When I bought this years ago, I started on Easy mode and slowly upped myself in difficulty. As I upped the difficulty, my skill would slowly increase. Don't expect that you'll be good in a short amount of time. Instead expect small advances in your skill: tried Normal, proficient at holds, mastered someone different.
    Full Review »
  2. Ben
    Mar 15, 2006
    Excellent game, you can play for hours on end with xbox live or multiplayer.
  3. SomeGuy
    Nov 17, 2005
    DoA is not a game, it's a graphics demo, therefore it deserves no points as a game. The graphics are incredibly good with flawless DoA is not a game, it's a graphics demo, therefore it deserves no points as a game. The graphics are incredibly good with flawless framerates, but there's nothing to play. The elaborate fighting system is a complete failure due to the fact that a normal human being (= most of the population) can't react fast enough to do counters or holds. This means that your only option is to push your kick and punch button in random order and hope it works. You have maybe 0.4 seconds of reaction time at most, during which you have to recognize the attack (low kick, high kick, middle kick, low punch, middle punch, high punch, flying kick, flying punch, throw) and react in a specific manner. Good luck with that. Full Review »