Hitomi (Dead or Alive)
|Dead or Alive character|
Hitomi in Dead or Alive 5
|First game||Dead or Alive 3 (2001)|
|Created by||Tomonobu Itagaki|
|Voiced by (English)||Hynden Walch (Xtreme 2, Paradise)
Eden Riegel (Paradise, Dimensions, DOA5)
|Voiced by (Japanese)||Yui Horie|
|Portrayed by||Hung Lin (film)|
High school student (DOA3-DOA4)College student (DOA5)
Hitomi (ヒトミ?) is a player character in the Dead or Alive fighting game series by Team Ninja and Tecmo (Tecmo Koei). She was introduced in Dead or Alive 3 in 2001, replacing Ein/Hayate as the regular karate martial artist in the character roster. Hitomi is a half-Japanese German girl who has been practicing the art of karate since she was a child and enters the Dead or Alive Tournaments either to test her skills against other martial artists or to see Hayate. The character was well received by game critics for her sex appeal and personality.
Hitomi was born in Germany to her German father, a karate master with his own dojo, and a Japanese mother. From a young age, Hitomi trained in the art under her father's guidance. Hitomi is a very friendly, cheerful, energetic girl but is also a hard-working martial artist with a life-long grueling training, as well as a complete commitment to her studies. She is a very honorable competitor and always fights fairly in a match, and will compliment her losing opponent rather than shame them like other fighters in the series. She will also defend others who are being treated harshly. Despite her Japanese name and study in karate, it appears that Hitomi is acclimated more into the German lifestyle than that of the Japanese.
Hitomi is a slender but physically fit young woman of average height. Although she has Japanese heritage from her mother, Hitomi has blue eyes and brown hair styled with long straight-bangs and a front fringe, and normally pushed back with a pink headband. Throughout the series, her height and bust measurements have changed, through only slightlty: in Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball, she is 161 cm tall with a 89 cm bust; in Dead or Alive 4, she is 160 cm tall with a 90 cm bust, and in Dead or Alive Xtreme 2, she is 158 cm tall with a 89 cm bust. Her clothing also bears a western appearance, with outfits consisting mostly of jeans, tank-tops, and denim jackets, with protective fighter's gloves. A running detail on her jeans is that the back label always bears the initials of the game she is in. Hitomi also sometimes sports her own emblem, mostly printed on the front of her tank-top or the back of her jacket. The emblem, in its simplest form, is the shape of an eagle with fanned-out wings. More detailed versions of the emblem show the eagle in greater style, holding a banner in its talons with Hitomi's name upon it. Phrases like "Thanks for the fight" and "My fists are on fire" may also be printed on it.
In Dead or Alive games
After the events of the original Dead or Alive, Hitomi found "Ein", and amnesiac a man passed out in the Black Forest, after he had been abandoned by Dead or Alive Tournament Executive Committee, after they had finished Project Epsilon. Hitomi took him home, and she and Ein studied karate until he left to enter the second Dead or Alive Tournament to find out about his past. During this tournament, Ein regained his memories, remembering that he was really a ninja clan leader Hayate and returned home to his village. Hitomi is a playable character in Dead or Alive Ultimate, but not in the story mode.
In Dead or Alive 3, the 18-year-old Hitomi enters the third tournament to prove to her skills and independence. While working for DOATEC as a waitress, she reunites with Ein and meets Ayane, surprising the latter that Hitomi's karate is equal to her ninjutsu. Ein then finally tells Hitomi the truth about himself, much to Hitomi's surprise. She also meets Jann Lee, who also shares a keen passion for martial arts, and the two share some philosophies about the way of martial arts, but she gets mad at him for being too hard on opponents after he brutally defeats Leifang. With Hitomi ranking third place in the tournament, her father lets her leave the dojo, and she moves on with her new life as an independent adult.
In Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball, Hitomi was invited to Zack Island for the fourth DOA tournament. However, that was only a ruse concocted by Zack to lure the girls of DOA to a two-week tropical vacation. In the sequel Dead or Alive Xtreme 2, Hitomi later returns to the island to participate in the fifth DOA tournament after receiving another false invitation from Zack. Hitomi is the only one to fall for Zack's ruse a second time, as the rest of the girls had their own motives for coming.
In Dead or Alive 4, Hitomi's father was struck with a sudden illness. Although he has recovered, the dojo's business is now in financial trouble. To save it, Hitomi joins the DOA4 tournament to win the cash prize. She defeats Leifang and again faces Jann Lee after he "rescues" her from a T-Rex (she found it "cruel" of him to attack the dinosaur despite its attempt to eat her). In the DOATEC Tritower, Hitomi eventually encounters Hayate again, and she pleads for him to come back with her to the dojo, admitting that she does not know what to do without him. Hayate refuses because he is no longer Ein, and the fourth tournament is no tournament at all, but a war. They tell each other to take care and teary Hitomi returns home.
In Dead or Alive 5, upon hearing about the fifth tournament, Hitomi reunites with Leifang and the two of them set off a journey to train together. After travelling around the world, the two of them go their own ways. At the tournament, Hitomi defeats Mila in the quarterfinals and Eliot in the semifinals. Before the finals, Hitomi reunites with Hayate, proudly telling him that she needs to win one more fight and she will be champion. After a sparring fight, they wish each other good luck, and then Hayate departs with Ayane. Hitomi is defeated by Jann Lee in the finals, making her the runner-up of the tournament.
Hitomi is played by Hung Lin in the live-action film DOA: Dead or Alive. A female fighter can be spotted in the lobby that appears to be a brunette headed girl with a pink headband and a jean jacket, which is Hitomi's primary costume in the games. Aside from the cameo, Hitomi's sweet and bubbly personality was given to Helena's character in the film. Hitomi also made an appearance in the Ninja Gaiden series' 2013 smart phone action card game Hyakuman-nin no Ninja Gaiden (in a ninja version with a sword) and her card was added to Sega's Samurai & Dragons that same year.
Merchandise and promotion
A range of merchandise items featuring the character has been created, including more than a dozen figurines, statuettes and action figures of various types and scales. Hitomi was used in the iPhone digital clock application Bijin Tokei and a Dead or Alive voice clock. Hitomi themed special "3D" mugs, body towels and mousepads, "3D "mousepads, body pillow cases, wall scrolls, and credit cards were also released as well, along with a hoodie of the design worn by Hitomi in DOA5. A clothing line by Tecmo Koei and Insert Coin included a hoodie based on one of Hitomi's costumes in DOA5.
Hitomi was one of the only four playable character in game demo of DOA5 was released with Ninja Gaiden 3. GameStop pre-order bonuses forn Dead or Alive 5 included a bunny swimsuit costume for Hitomi. An update to Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate: Core Fighters made Hitomi a free playable character between December 2013 and January 2014; she is otherwise available for purchase through a microtransation.
Hitomi was noted as a character that is easy to use. Joystiq reported that Tomonobu Itagaki "decided to add her to the roster [of Dead or Alive 3] because of her accessibility to players of all skills." Siliconera's preview of Dead or Alive: Dimensions recommended: "If you’re a DOA newcomer, start with Hitomi. She’s a nice combination of stylish moves + easy to learn."
In GameSpot's Dead or Alive 4 guide, Matthew Rorie opined Hitomi in this game is a "fairly standard character" that is "not exceptionally damaging, but her speed works to her favor" as she is able to "strike between a slower character's blows or throw them off-balance with a mixture of high and low strikes." According to DOA4 guide by GameSpy's David McCutcheon, "a dinky powerhouse in herself, Hitomi can really wallop an opponent when needed, but she's no slouch when it comes to speed, either." He wrote "she does take a little getting used to, which is bound to throw a lot of impatient players off, but [one] can wholly stun players by using her with all of her assets in tact." Official Xbox Magazine described Hiromi in DOAX as "similar to Tina in that she's very strong at the net, but she's a lot better as a receiver, though she's more viable up front rather than in back."
The character has been often noted for her sex appeal. GameSpy's Bryan "Sir Crossforge" Johnson collectively placed her, along with the other DOA girls, at second spot of his 2003 list of "top babes in games," using Hitomi's picture to illustrate it. The staff of Team Xbox ranked "knockout Hitomi" as the fourth top "Xbox babe" in 2004, higher than DOA icon Kasumi. Fakt showcased her among some of the sexy "ladies" of video games in 2009, Wesley Yin-Poole of Videogamer.com included her among the top ten "video game crushes" in 2010 including for how she has "got an innocent schoolgirl vibe going on," and Jeremy Render of Cheat Code Central featured her on his 2011 list of top ten sexiest female video game characters, where Hitomi shared number six spot with Ayane.
Gavin Mackenzie of PLAY joked that that her breasts are two of the top ten best things one could expect to see in DOA5, commenting: "These breasts are slightly smaller and rather less showy than some of the other breasts in the DOA series, but they’re still popular with those who value a little, but really only a little, more modesty." IGN noted how "Hitomi approaches each new day with characteristic optimism. Some of the other DOA babes could learn a thing or two from her." GameSpot stated "she constantly reminds us of Buffy the Vampire Slayer." In a 2012 article about Dead or Alive 3 as an Xbox game that "shaped the generation," the staff of GamesRadar US said they liked "new girl Hitomi best. We're sure you'll agree."
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