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No Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 for the West, says publisher

The notorious cheesecake sports game series won't have its third installment sold in the West, according to a Koei Tecmo rep, thanks to "issues" with the representation of women.

Christian Nutt, Contributor

November 24, 2015

2 Min Read

The Dead or Alive Xtreme series is notorious for its portrayal of a series of women in states of limited dress -- the first, for the Xbox, was a beach volleyball game featuring bikinis and camera angles designed to give the best view not for play, but for ogling the character models. The second, for the Xbox 360, expanded the gameplay but kept the nearly-naked ladies.

The third game, pictured above and under development for the PlayStation 4 and Vita, will not be released in the West, according to a comment from an official Dead or Alive Facebook community manager.

"Do you know many issues [are] happening in [the] video game industry with regard to how to treat female[s] in [the] video game industry? We do not want to talk [about] those things here. But certainly we have gone through in [the] last year or two to come to our decision. Thank you," one comment from a publisher rep reads. 

It's unclear just who wrote the post -- and which Koei Tecmo office they operate out of -- but it's a post from the official Dead or Alive account. It's true that games like Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 are under much more scrutiny in years past, and this comment seems to be unambiguous in its reasoning. 

This is the first installment of the franchise to be released after the 2008 Koei Tecmo merger, and it is unclear how that may factor in -- prior to the merger, Koei had a much more staid image than the free-wheeling Tecmo. But it's reasonable to consider that conversations around the representation of women in games contributed to Koei Tecmo's decision.

For his part, former Team Ninja head Tomonobu Itagaki seems to think that the era of sexy games like Dead or Alive Xtreme has run its course, according to these comments from a 2011 Gamasutra interview:

"Well, there's the internet now, so if you want to look at naked women, it's right there. In 1996, the net wasn't as ubiquitous, so you had this scene where you had to go to a video store and overcome your shame as you went up to the clerk. Dead or Alive, in part, allowed people to enjoy that sort of thing easily while also enjoying the game itself."

Nonetheless, those who would like to play the game can still import it on its Japanese release in 2016.

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