Dead or Alive 3

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For the film, see Dead or Alive: Final.
Dead or Alive 3
Dead or Alive 3.png
Japanese cover art
Developer(s) Team Ninja
Publisher(s) Tecmo
Designer(s) Tomonobu Itagaki
Series Dead or Alive
Platform(s) Xbox
Release date(s)
  • NA November 15, 2001
  • JP February 22, 2002
  • EU March 14, 2002
Genre(s) Fighting game
Mode(s) Single player, multiplayer

Dead or Alive 3 (Japanese: デッドオアアライブ3 Hepburn: Deddo Oa Araibu Surī?, abbreviated as DOA3 ) is a fighting game in the Dead or Alive series. It was released in 2001, exclusively on the Xbox as a launch title.


The basic gameplay controls and commands remain essentially unchanged from Dead or Alive 2; however, some minor tweaks have been added to the game system in the form of increased counter periods, unrestricted 3D-axis movement, and less emphasis on juggling combos. All these gameplay enhancements make the game more suited for beginners, and makes the artificial intelligence much more forgiving. Finally, the game incorporated less damage percentiles in counter maneuvers, added four new characters to the roster, and game's tag controls were changed to insert Attack Change, a new tag system feature where the fighting character can switch places with his or her tag partner, which can then unleash an attack while a character is jumping in.

Despite the somewhat lacking gameplay updates of the North American version, the Japanese version features many gameplay changes, with new attacks for characters, tweaked move properties for attacks, and a new intro cinematic for the game.


The super ninja Ryu Hayabusa put a stop to the evil doings of Tengu. Nevertheless, it was too late to stop the Tengu of Destruction from triggering a massive, worldwide collapse. The collapse churns up a dense cloud that covers the entire planet in a shroud of darkness and fear. DOATEC has gone astray, turning into the hunting grounds for power-hungry scam artists. This is when DOATEC's development department (a fortress for state-of-the-art military technology) witnesses the success of a genius. Following Project Alpha and Project Epsilon, the ever ambitious Dr. Victor Donovan completes the Omega Project, producing a new Superhuman: Genra. This man, who was once leader of the Hajin Mon ninja, is no longer human, but a force of singular and unprecedented capabilities. A slaughterhouse has now been provided as the exclusive domain of the Omega superhuman. It is a realm that has come to be known as the world Combat Championship.


Returning characters: Ayane, Bass Armstrong, Bayman, Ein (unlockable), Gen Fu, Helena Douglas, Jann Lee, Kasumi, Leifang, Leon, Ryu Hayabusa, Tina Armstrong, Zack. New characters: Brad Wong, Christie, Hayate, Hitomi. Boss character (unplayable): Genra.


The European and Japanese versions of Dead or Alive 3 feature more content such as extra costumes, a time attack mode and a new CG introduction. Because of its early release, the North American version does not feature any of the above.

A soundtrack CD for the game, titled Dead or Alive 3 Original Sound Trax (KWCD-1006), was released by Wake Up in 2002. Three guide books were published in Japan in early 2002: Dead or Alive 3 Guide Book (デッド オア アライブ3 ガイドブック) by Famitsu / Enterbrain, Dead or Alive 3 Kōshiki Kōryaku Guide (デッド オア アライブ3 公式攻略ガイド) by Kodansha, and Dead or Alive 3 Perfect Guide (デッド オア アライブ3 パーフェクトガイド) by SoftBank.[1]

On June 2002, Official Xbox Magazine provided a 'Booster Disc' for DOA3 which included all of the extra costumes released on the EU and JP versions of the game, but it did not however contain the extra fighting moves or general game balancing tweaks that the other versions brought. The booster content continued to be provided with the Official Xbox Magazine demo disc from June 2002 to September 2002; each disc featured the same content but gave magazine buyers multiple times to acquire it. The Platinum Collection edition of the game was released in 2003.


Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 86.2%[2]
Metacritic 87/100[3]
Review scores
Publication Score
Famitsu 37/40[4]
Game Informer 9.25/10[7]
GamePro 5/5[5]
Game Revolution B[6]
GameSpot 7.9/10[9]
IGN 9.4/10[10]
OXM 9.5/10[11]
TeamXbox 8.2/10[12]
Gamereactor 9/10[13]
GameShark 8.9/10[14]
Next Generation 5/5 stars[15]
Xbox World 9/10[16]

Upon its release, Dead or Alive 3 received mostly very positive reviews. In Japan, Famitsu scored the game a 37 out of 40.[4] IGN stated that it "represents the new standard of excellence that only the Xbox can deliver" and praised the game for its great attention to detail and its vast improvements on its predecessor.[10] GameSpot, on the other hand, opined that "once you get past its graphics, you'll find that Dead or Alive 3 doesn't offer much of anything that hasn't been done in other 3D fighting games."[9]

Dead or Alive 3 sold more than one million copies in the first five months after its release.[17] The game became the third best-selling launch title next to Microsoft's Halo: Combat Evolved and Project Gotham Racing and the first third-party Xbox game to garner Platinum status.

In 2008, Cinema Blend ranked it as the eight best fighting game of all time.[18] In 2011, Complex ranked it as the 15th best fighting game of all time.[19] GamesRadar included it among the Xbox games "that shaped the generation."[20]


  1. ^ "Dead or Alive 3". Arcade Gear. Retrieved 2013-12-21. 
  2. ^ "Dead or Alive 3 for Xbox". GameRankings. 2001-11-14. Retrieved 2013-12-21. 
  3. ^ "Dead or Alive 3 for Xbox Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 2013-12-21. 
  4. ^ a b Xbox - DEAD OR ALIVE 3. Weekly Famitsu. No.915 Pt.2. Pg.103. 30 June 2006.
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Dead or Alive 3 Review". Retrieved 2013-12-21. 
  7. ^ "Dead or Alive 3". Game Informer: 98. December 2001. 
  8. ^
  9. ^ a b "Dead or Alive 3 Review". Retrieved 2013-12-18. 
  10. ^ a b "Dead or Alive 3 - Xbox - IGN". 2004-10-18. Retrieved 2013-12-18. 
  11. ^ Official Xbox Magazine, December 2001
  12. ^ "Dead or Alive 3 Review (Xbox)". 2001-11-14. Retrieved 2013-12-21. 
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^ Next Generation, January 2002, page 33
  16. ^ Xbox World, issue 1 (April 2003), page 122
  17. ^ Icons: Dead or Alive (television program).
  18. ^ "Top 10 Best Fighting Games Of All Time". December 7, 2008. Retrieved April 3, 2013. 
  19. ^ Peter Rubin, The 50 Best Fighting Games of All Time,, March 15, 2011
  20. ^ GamesRadar US (2012-06-23). "The games that shaped a generation: Xbox". GamesRadar. Retrieved 2013-12-21. 

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