Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball - Xbox

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Viewed: 3D Third-person, over the shoulder Genre:
Sport: Volleyball
Media: CD Arcade origin:No
Developer: Tecmo Soft. Co.: Tecmo
Publishers: Microsoft Game Studios (GB)
Released: 18 Nov 2002 (US)
28 Mar 2003 (GB)
Ratings: 15+
Accessories: Memory Unit


If anything is likely to provoke a strong public reaction, then a bunch of scantily clad young girls frolicking about on a beach sure is. So notable, in fact, this latest jaunt from the chaps at Tecmo had already sparked an imitator before its release. Possibly inspired by a board meeting entitled 'What would we most like to see the attractive young ladies from the Dead or Alive games doing next?' DOA Xtreme Beach Volleyball has obviously emerged from one of the more realistic suggestions, focusing on the fine sport of volleyball.

The game takes place on Zack Island, a tropical island that he purchased and named after himself after winning big at the casino. Zack declares the island the official location of the fourth Dead or Alive tournament. When the invites are sent and people start arriving, everyone realises that only women were invited to the island. What is the meaning of this and how will the ladies amuse themselves in their free time on the tropical island? We're sure Zack has a few ideas up his sleeve.

In the game itself, players select from the list of volleyballers and subsequently enter the competition, teaming up with a partner before working their way through the story-driven tournament. As you may expect, there are a number of different beaches that serve as venues for the games, as well as varying times of day, giving a nice variety of appearances for the matches. All are quite beautifully rendered, showing off some great effects for the sand and sea.

In addition to the standard beach volleyball tournament, players also have a wealth of other recreational activities to choose from on the island. You can spend time in the arcade, where you can play a mini game of Dead or Alive 3; visit the movie theatre and watch trailers for other Tecmo games; or head down to the casino, where you can try your hand at special Dead or Alive versions of slots, poker, blackjack and roulette. Other mini-games include a lifeguard drill, a dance competition, and a beauty contest.

The game also has you cultivating relationships with other potential team partners, by giving you the option of buying them gifts. If a character likes the gift you bought her, she may wear it during a match and reciprocate by buying you something in return. Or if, like in real life, she doesn't like the gift you bought her, she won't say anything, but will probably sulk for the rest of the day. In the game, strong relationships off the volleyball court will lead to better tag play on the court.

There's a whole lot more to this game than just volleyball - its wealth of extra modes and options offer a great deal of replayability. It's also one of those games that you can use to show off to your mates, as it truly looks stunning (and that's not just the girls!). Fairly original and quirky, DOA Xtreme Beach Volleyball is definitely worth considering.