I’ve always enjoyed DOA, but I’ll be the first to admit that their character designs tend to feel a bit generic. I thought it was cool that they gave Nico the electricity stuff and the blue hair and what not, but her moves feel so similar to so many other characters in the game.
It’d be awesome if they really went out on a limb with the design choices and explored some martial arts that are either uncommon in fighting games or, at the very least, uncommon in DOA.
I thought they made a really good move in the last game by having a couple of Virtua Fighter characters and I wouldn’t mind seeing a few more as guests in this game, maybe as many as four.
I haven’t seen NiCO yet but if she does have the same moves as everybody else then that would make her Copy Cat #4.
The First Was Alpha, Then Raido and then Honoka… probably the worst offender of them all since the moves she copied literally have the same Frame Data as the original characters that use those moves.
That’s interesting to me, b/c I’ve always felt DOA was one of the better fighters in terms of characters having “different” and lesser seen martial arts. I feel like from 4 on there’s always been an interesting mix of soft and hard styles and Eastern/Western ones also, with some pretty cool showcases of the differences in the holds in particular.
I think some of that subtlety does get lost in the speed of the poke/stagger/counterpoke game, but I feel like at its core the style and “feel” of each character is pretty unique. A Kokoro fight doesn’t look like a Lisa or Lei Fang or Ayane or Rachel one, and Bayman doesn’t look like Rig doesn’t look like Jan doesn’t look like Hayate. Every character looks and feels pretty different IMO.
I don’t think Mai was handled as well as Geese in Tekken (who I probably consider the best handled guest character of all time), but it’s definitely a note-worthy inclusion and a testament to what DOA is capable of.
I actually spent some time thinking about this. I think there’s a lot of subjectivity to any kind of assessment of character design so it’s a tough thing to try to discuss. But I think there’s two parts of this. The first is that every female doa character is a ridiculously proportioned, doll faced sex fantasy. So they are kind of generic in that sense from my point of view. But if you unpack the roster, I don’t think it’s more generic than most fighters and as a whole the roster stands out from other games. First, there’s a lot of ninjas. Outside of Kage from VF ninja are not actually all that common in fighters. There’s also 3 wrestlers and an MMA Fighter. There’s an opera singer and a spy and a couple of military fighters. Seems okay to me. You just have to understand that the game and world is just not quite as zany as something like Tekken where there are robots and demons and angels everywhere.
They are also limited in their fighting style design by the fact that characters pretty much punch and kick. They don’t have fireballs and chains and lasers like some fighting games. But I think each character has a pretty distinct style.
If you compare to something like KoF which always gets props for character design, in my opinion you just see a lot of weirdness. “Let’s put a woman in a suit and make her fight like a cat.”
Yeah I think the holds definitely showcase the differences in styles, no question. For me, it’s more of the strikes, combos and flip kicks. I mean sure, there are definitely characters that feel differently from one another. A grappler like Tina gives you a vastly different toolset to play with than Brad Wong, who moves and even strikes differently than Gen Fu, who strikes differently and with different speed than Ayane, and he’s obviously much less acrobatic.
So sure, there are definitely differences. But how different does Bayman feel from Leon? How different does Kasumi feel from Ayane? I think there are enough examples of characters that either move a bit similarly, strike a bit too similarly, combo a bit too similarly or combo hold a bit too similarly to the point where it feels as though their might be a bit more carry over from character to character than I’d personally like, and maybe that’s a result of the devs being a little too constrained by some of their mechanics? I dunno.
I agree, there’s some good variety in there and some styles really do come through. I’d say Lisa and Brad Wong, chief among them. But when you have characters that are mainly strikers and don’t really have a stance that stands out too much, you might see some moves that separate them or some speed changes or power changes, but overall, the action on the screen tends to look rather familiar after a while, and that’s not really a vibe I get from other 3D fighters like Tekken and Virtua Fighter.
That’s strange, I honestly don’t remember her for some reason. No kidding… Thanks!
Ah that’s right! I forgot Mai was in the game as well. Good call there!
Oh no question. I usually try to preface sentences like that with “in my opinion” or “I personally think” or something along those lines. I didn’t mean to imply that my opinion was some sort of a known fact or anything along those lines. Good call there.
Yeah, which is kinda sad, because for me it detracts a little from any type of story they attempt to tell. It just feels a little odd when you have a serious story about ninja clans and a tournament and then you have girls with Victoria Secret bodies and then some, but have the voices of bubbly 12 year olds. It makes the whole thing feel a little pervy, but I guess that’s DOA.
I know, some love it and I know they raised holy hell when Team Ninja even attempted to talk about toning things down a bit. Still kinda sucks when DOA is my wife’s favorite fighting game and she has to play it through perpetually rolled yes lol.
Yeah I don’t really mind their backgrounds and how that might effect their play styles and truth be told, I actually kinda dislike all the zany stuff from Tekken like bears, robots, training dummies and what not.
My issue is more with how similar a lot of the play styles feel in terms of how the characters strike, combo, counter-throw, etc. Maybe it’s more about the mechanics, but while some characters definitely feel different from one another and some characters definitely stand out in terms of their overall play styles, I’d probably say Brad Wong and Lisa chief among them, a lot of the way characters attack, build combos, etc make them feel similar to one another even if they have a different stance.
Sure, each character has some moves that separate them and give them a bit of a unique feel. I guess I’d just somehow like to see more of that unique feel to see even more separation between character X and the rest of the roster. Not only that, but it’d be nice to see some characters do a bit more within their own movesets to further drive home their particular style. Some do a great job of this, some do an okay job, and again, some just feel a bit more generic or interchangeable with other characters.
That’s true. I guess it’d just be nice if they could introduce some more individualized character mechanics, perhaps some mechanics that break the rules of other, more standardized gameplay mechanics, like maybe there’s a character that doesn’t do catch counter throws, but does something else instead.
While the cat thing is a bit weird, certainly, I wouldn’t mind seeing more styles that are a bit on the unique side. Doesn’t VF have a character that uses a monkey style? Stuff like that would be cool to see in DOA.
To be clear, I probably overstated things a bit when I used the word “generic.” I don’t want to make it sound like I don’t like this series, because I like it a lot and I think the fighting is fast and fun. I just think that after five games, it wouldn’t be the worst idea if they tried to do a bit more to individualize the striking characters and the grappling characters a bit more in terms of how they function, how they do damage, how much damage they do, how much damage counter throws deal, what mechanics characters might follow or ignore, etc.
Maybe they have a character who’s punch and kick buttons actually control their left and right legs and they only attack with their legs. Maybe they have a capoeira character. Maybe they have a character with multiple fighting styles and you can switch between them. I dunno, I’m not proposing anything new here, obviously, and if I were a bit more awake, I might be able to throw out some better ideas. I guess I’ve just always seen a lot of similarity between many of the characters in terms of strikers and grapplers and I wouldn’t mind seeing them try to find more ways to make them a bit more unique within what they do.
No he wasn’t (Okay, some of his combos are hard, please don’t hurt me lol).
You just learn to play like it’s Street Fighter/King of Fighters. They don’t exactly come from the same game so you shouldn’t expect them to. SNK did this quite a bit with their own guest characters, specifically from KOFXI.
This is why I say Mai isn’t as well handled. As opposed to special-cancelling in TEKKEN, Mai does it as part of her strings. Visually, it looks nice but the 2D aspect isn’t really there in that regard which doesn’t make it as special (She still has her specials AND a 2D-like jump though).
It’s not just about control scheme either. With Akuma and Geese, they went out of their way to incorporate the Meter Systems from their respective games along with mechanics associated with them. It’s things like this that makes guest characters worth doing, and sets examples on how they should be handled.
Mai has one of her Supers turned into a special. I’m not really bothered by this, but it is one of those nit-picky attention to detail things for me.
Well yeah. I mean, my mom thinks MK and SF are “basically the same,” (not acccusing you of being my mom) so it all depends on how closely you want to look. DoA has a very distinct “feel” to it’s gameplay that I really like and generally it’s a fairly simple system too. Lots of similarity to Virtua Fighter which is why those guest characters worked so well. I don’t really want to argue but there are some things I think are interesting:
First, I really think Kasumi and Ayane have very different playstyles. They do fit somewhat into the archetype (invented by VF) that my brother and I jokingly refer to as “the quick punchers of justice.” Like VF, many of the DoA characters have very quick jab style punch strings that will interrupt many slower mode powerful moves and can often lead to combos. But Ayane is a much more deception based character than Kasumi who is simply fast. I think if you look at Hyabusa, he plays very differently from most brawler characters. Honestly, with his teleports, back dashing moves and powerful Izuna drop he reminds me more of a Soul Calibur playstyle. Whereas DoA has always otherwise felt like a more fluid version of VF with counters to me. Bayman and Leon are very similar but that’s a bit unfair since they are essentially clone characters. Same goes for Kasumi and Hayate. But Bass and Tina are both pretty unique as far as gameplay.
I also think Helena has a very distinct style, with her punch attacks being very high and both arms outstretched while a lot of her kicks come out backwards. She has an interesting playstyle involving a backward stance too, where her lunches come out mid.
So yeah, I can certainly understand where you’re coming from but although I see some characters clustering together with similarities I don’t think this compares poorly to games like SF where there are a dozen shoto characters.
VF characters are exaggerated versions of actual fighting techniques. There is a drunken monkey style old man - not very different from Brad Wong. There’s a “mantis” style fighter too bit his flowchart isn’t really that different from other “quick punchers.”
Man… I need a beer and some guys to hang around playing fighting games with.
Tekken’s Akuma was borrowed from SFIV… not SFV… SFIV wasn’t impossible because anything to do with learning… it was unplayable because of its execution… which is something I don’t have. As for KOF… KOF just hates accessibility. It doesn’t feature a single character that I would consider “Playable”. And even if it… it would be just one character… horrible value for money.
Actually she could do them Raw… they weren’t string specific.
Infact as far as I can tell the only difference is the execution isn’t a stupid as it was in KOF.
And thats great… and then they brought along the execution with it… guaranteed Hype Killer… for me.
I remember having tons of fun with Mai in DoA and that inspired me to try KoF… dropped it in a week… which is actually generous considering it only takes a few hours to determine if a fighting game is worthy time investment or just another wall for one to bang their head against
Guest characters are great if they get players curious about the games those characters come from… Mai did that for me… Akuma & Geese ? Not even close.
Haha, I’m Andy’s mom lol. But nah I hear ya. I think my issue is mainly that while characters do all feel unique in certain ways, their attack strings tend to be somewhat similar, and I say this obviously as someone that’s played all of them and played many of them extensively. Perhaps not DOA 5 as much as the others, so maybe things are changing.
However, I played DOA 3 for hundreds of hours and there were definitely common strings among many of the characters that all basically did the same thing to varying degrees, even if the delivery or the attacks or the speed changed between characters.
I know, even saying that, it makes it sound as though I’m describing every fighting game ever made. I guess it DOA it just looks a bit more pronounced? To be clear, I’m sure I’m probably overstating things here, and that’s not really my intention. I don’t mean to imply that everyone has the same move list because that’s obviously not true.
But when I look at how Virtua Fighter characters play, sure you have the earlier characters like Jacky and Sarah that of the P, P, P, K variety, but over the years, they’ve done so much to make each character’s move list so unique and they all move differently, function differently, and have such substantial lists of moves, many unique to each character, that it does tend to make DOA’s roster and fighting mechanics feel a bit more universal to substantial parts of the roster.
And honestly, that’s okay. Aside from the fact that this is all subjective, of course, I shouldn’t expect DOA to be VF and there are definitely things that I like about each game that are advantages over the other. VF has rather complicated directional moves and the timing needed to execute moves can feel a bit punitive at times. So in that regard, I like that I can pull off just about every move in DOA with minimal effort. I think that’s a huge advantage for that game.
But in terms of how many of the characters play, it would just be nice if they felt a little more beholden to even exaggerated versions of their styles. Some characters are great at this. Brad and Lisa in particular, I think. But while some characters have styles and animations that make them look more unique, it still feels like the end results are a bit same-y across the board when it comes to many of the combos.
I mean, if you can play one character well in this game, chances are you can be relatively competent with at least 70-80% of the roster well based on how many of them string moves together. I don’t think that’s really the case in Virtua Fighter. Sure, it’s a non-zero percentage in VF, no question. But I don’t think it’s quite as high in VF as it is in DOA.
So I’d like to see a bit more complexity (not in how to do moves, mind you) and individualization, where characters get more of their own unique mechanics that set themselves apart further from the rest of the roster.
Again, I’m not saying every character plays exactly the same. That’s obviously not the case. But when you have combos that structure pretty similarly across the board, and everyone has catch counter throws, I start to feel like it wouldn’t be the worst thing for me if some of the characters felt a bit more unique in terms of how they attack, their string combinations, their stances, etc. I just think that DOA’s overall feel could stand to have a bit more variation in it on a character by character basis. I think VF excels at that a bit more, but if you disagree, no problem.
Sorry, I’m sure I repeated myself about 90 times in that long-winded mess lol.
That sounds awesome right about now! Getting some of my friends or my wife to play fighting games is like pulling teeth. She’ll play DOA and Soul Calibur and that’s it. One of my buddies will only play Injustice 2. My one friend that plays KI lives in DC, so we rarely get to play each other in person.
I used to have marathon Tekken 3 sessions with my room mates back in college. I could really go for one of those marathons with some buddies right about now!
I really love VF. I was a casual fan of early games but 4 and 5 I think are amazing. The game and its animations are not what I would call fluid, but it has good online (or fakes it well) and lots of depth for sure. But Akira epitomizes everything I hate about fighting game design. I don’t know any humans that can hit his strings, with the one frame timing required. But if you can, he’s nearly invincible.
I have come to really like Goh - not his character design so much as his fighting style. I always want to like grapplers but the only other grappler I really play is Tina from DoA.
Yeah it’s amazing how much they expanded and perfected their characters by the 4th and 5th games. I’ve loved that series since the beginning, though VF3 isn’t exactly my favorite.
Maybe that’s why some of the moves are harder to pull off? I dunno. I’ve never really had a problem with the way the characters move or strike, but I’ll certainly concede that it doesn’t feel as good as say Soul Calibur, for example, especially as far as overall movement is concerned.
Yeah, he’s the absolute worst as far as this goes and I don’t think it’s really close. Even the easiest looking strings feel SO restricted as far as timing. He’s always more or less been the poster boy for the series, which makes it all the more baffling that he’s so frustrating to try and play as. If you’d never played that game before and you went in, immediately trying to get good with Akira, I can’t imagine you’d come out feeling good about the game as a whole.
He’s honestly the one character on the whole roster that I don’t really even bother with. I played Kage, Shun Di and Jeffrey in the early games, the latter of which was really my first introduction to true grapplers, and I absolutely loved them. Now though, by the end of VF5: FS, I was playing Vanessa more than anyone. Her style switch and all the moves she has in each style just make her so much fun to use IMO.
Yeah, I love a good grappler too, which is why it’s endlessly frustrating to me that Mortal Kombat doesn’t seem to have even the slightest idea how to implement this type of character lol. Sorry, don’t mean to come in with the scorching hot takes, but trying to use Jax as a grappler always frustrated the hell out of me because his throws and especially his throw combos always felt so counterintuitive.
My favorite grappler is probably King from Tekken. As complex as his throw combos tend to be, I was still always able to pull off about 80% of them with relative ease, which made him (and the rest of his moveset) a blast to use. Tina’s definitely up there for me as well, along with Leon.
Glad to see Brad back! Love the handstand kicks. Elliot… I don’t really understand the need for this character. Just seems like a younger version of Gen Fu, right down to the exact same animation for his counter. I mean, I don’t have a problem with animations being reused and I’m sure he has more moves that differentiate him from Gen Fu, but he still just feels a bit samey to me. Oh well. Still nice to see the roster rounding in to shape, I suppose.
Elliot always struck me as the more explosive soft-style user. He’s the one guy using a less “brawling” style that’s still likely to see the opponent getting shot back 50 feet like they just took a cannon to the chest.
Might not be an accurate take on the character, but it’s the sense my limited time watching DOA has given me.