Fans of KOEI Tecmo’s beach volleyball/jiggle physics simulator Dead or Alive Xtreme may be waiting a while for a new entry to the series. With Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 heading to Japanese shelves early next year, a representative from Team Ninja explicitly ruled out a Western release of the game. This is following a string of public hearsay from staff at Team Ninja, with many claims that the game would remain Asia-exclusive.
The first claim came in the form of a Facebook post from the Community Manager over at Team Ninja, citing the “many issues in the video game industry in regards to the treatment of females.” While it’s certainly true that the Dead or Alive Xtreme series has raised many a question on gender equality – and perhaps rightfully so – this will mark the first time that a game in this franchise has not shipped to a Western audience. KOEI Tecmo Europe backed up those claims, confirming that the game would not see Western shores, but neglected to comment on the question of gender equality.
The final, official statement from KOEI Tecmo states no particular reason for the change, simply reaffirming that Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 remains in development solely for Japan and Asia. It’s perhaps worth noting that the Asian release comes complete with an English language option, so the option to localize seems to be largely based on demographics and public perception.
It’s certainly true that this particular franchise has been subject to questionable reception over its lifespan, but I’d like to know what you think. This is far from the only morally questionable game out there, but do you think that the frankly deplorable depiction of women here is enough to justify KOEI Tecmo’s decision to withhold a release?