|Dead or Alive 3 seemed a lot like DOA 2, to me, but DOA 4 is starting to feel like a new game, finally. For one thing, the speed of the fighters has been increased dramatically. It wasn't really lacking before, and now it is super-fast. Does this make it more button-mashy, or less? I guess it depends on how good you area, and how fast. Needless to say, I'm not very good.|
There are other new things too, that I'm not quite adept enough to appreciate in my own play, but which I can watch in the play of others, first and foremost being the "advanced" counters that seem to let you do additional moves for additional damage.
The graphics, of course, are gorgeous, in a somewhat over-the-top way, and the animation is very fluid. The music ranged from sort of crappy rock to other stuff that was nice enough that I didn't really notice it. The stage designs were very good, with many of them featuring large, almost free-ranging areas, with multiple levels of fighting space. For instance, one jungle area starts on a rickety rope bridge, and if someone falls off, the fight continues in the river below. The previous DOAs have had multi-level fighting areas, but they've become distinctly bigger and livelier here, with all kinds of nice lighting effects and animations on the background areas.
As a fighting game, I don't think I'd choose it over Virtua Fighter 4, still, but it's certainly easy to get into.