Team Ninja recommends gamers turn 3D off for the hardcore experience when playing Dead or Alive Dimensions on their brand new Nintendo 3DS systems. Yep, that's right, play it like you would on any other machine. Studio head Yosuke Hayashi's words are sure to annoy Nintendo, who are selling the system on its unique selling point of being able to provide glasses-free 3D. Why would he say such a thing?
Above: We would never have expected Hayashi-san to encourage Kasumi to look flatter
The problem is in the frame rate. Now, I'm aware a lot of people don't 'see through the matrix' like I do when it comes to frame rate, but I'm sure even a layman would notice the flicker-book quality of the game when the 3D is switched on. In fact, when I first played 3DS in Amsterdam last month, DoA was the first game I played. And I wasn't at all impressed with the 3D, saying:
"Games like Dead or Alive and PES feature noticeable frame-rate hits when you switch on the 3D effect. Mostly, this is just down from silky-smooth 60 frames per second to 30 FPS, which is still as smooth as Gears of War and the replays from Gran Turismo 5. But DoA, which has no stutters in 2D mode, cut up quite badly with 3D turned on."
It rung alarm bells then and it looks like the clanging was wholly justified. In fact, I reckon it actually dips below 30 quite regularly when the 3D mode is switched on, making for a very scrappy scrapper - enough for Hayashi to point it out before someone calls him out. That said, the version I played was a demo and Hayashi has since stated: "Regardless of the mode you are playing, when the 3D slider is turned on the game will run at a constant 30 fps."
Above: Oh, hey - isn't that the third best fighting background ever? Wonder if its biggest trick is intact...
In 2D mode, the game is the same flowing, beautiful fighting game we've known since DoA2 on Dreamcast, and probably about as detailed as that version. That's probably enough to appease hardcore fans, but are casuals going to enjoy an experience that's anything less than perfect? Even Saturn's original DoA ran at 60fps, which makes this feel... a bit slapdash.
It'll be interesting to see whether Nintendo lets this one ship in the state it's in. What do you think? Not good enough? Or are you still thinking 'THREE DEEEE!!!' at the expense of technical scrutiny? Let us know in the comments.
17 Feb, 2011