Dead Or Alive Community Leaders Soft Ban Sexy Costumes At Tournaments

Dead Or Alive Community Leaders Soft Ban Sexy Costumes At Tournaments

Acknowledging that the Dead or Alive fighting franchise has a sexy image problem, community leaders at the series’ go-to forum have added an over-sexualized costume soft-ban to their tournament rules. Reactions from the community-at-large have been overwhelmingly negative.

With the biggest competitive tournament push in franchise history accompanying the release of Dead or Alive 5: Last Round on current generation consoles, concern over the series’ negative image to those outside of the community is at an all-time high. And while I believe the weight of changing that image lies with Team Ninja and Tecmo Koei (largely the latter), core members of the Free Step Dodge community are attempting to take steps towards softening its sexy edge.

Updating the community site’s official tournament rules (thanks Billy for the tip!), community leader and tournament organiser The HuBBs explained the reasoning behind the soft ban on certain sexy costumes.

This is a movement that was discussed by several members of the community to try and help turn around the image that has plagued the franchise. DOA has always been known for its over-sexualized females and just that alone has pushed people away from even trying the game. Sex Appeal in the DOA franchise will never go away but we, the community, want people to take it seriously and started the costume ban at offline tournaments to force people to focus more on the gameplay aspect of the game. This is a soft ban and is at the discretion of the TO running the game at the event. However we HIGHLY encourage people to not use the suggested costumes on stream for something like Top 8.

The community board exploded with negative responses to the change shortly after its Friday posting.

Some likened the soft ban to censorship.

People who don’t understand why a costume ban is an issue don’t understand the principle of it. This is censorship. This is sexism. This is elitism.

Others pointed out that all of the banned costumes are for female characters, while plenty of suggestive male costumes exist.

“If they plan banning these costumes, I would like to have a motion to ban all of the guy’s costumes that show their nips. And, those costumes where they are in their undies only. Because, it’s too “provocative” for my lady eyes and it makes me think that these men are being overly sexualized because seeing them with their 3D tits makes me wanna rub my lady junk.”

Still others cried out against attempting to placate the fighting community at large, which some consider a futile pursuit.

If you tell me that I cant use Christie’s BDSM costume offline then I will tell you to fuck off. You guys dont seem to understand that they will shit on DOA even if they remove ALL of the hyper sexualized shit because they don’t want to adjust their playstyle to the games triangle system. That “rule” seems to be placating to some whinny people who have insecure girlfriends or something. I don’t like it at all.

Several commenters were upset at the idea the rule would make it seem like the community doesn’t support its own game.

I just have a hard times believing that we can’t accept DOA for what it is. We can’t seem to ‘OWN’ our own game, if you all understand what I mean. It may seem like a minor thing – but it will project the idea of “Wow, look at those DOA fans – embarrassed about their own game.”

The idea behind the ban — fostering a larger community by promising a less over-sexualized experience at competitive events — was not lost on everyone.

Honestly, I don’t see the problem with banning those costumes. This ban is only during tournament so you can still use the costumes during casual events and online. Its not going to effect a lot of people and team ninja is doing all they can to support the community. So we should do all we can to help the community grow and if its something small like this then it should be ok.

As a Dead or Alive fan I see no issue with excluding certain costumes during official tournament play. The characters all fight the same no matter what they are wearing. The focus should be on the fighting. On the other hand, I understand that some players may feel more comfortable with certain costumes, making excluding some of them a real problem.

As a soft ban, it’s up to tournament organisers to implement the rule or not. Considering the author of the post is involved with many of the official tournaments this year, it’s definitely going to come up.

It will be interesting to see how this all plays out at Final Round 18, the second leg of the 2015 Battle Royal tournament series, happening in Atlanta later this month.


  • The mere fact the game’s community has reacted like that is proof it isn’t worth being taken seriously… When your fighting game becomes is a laughing stock for reasons that have NOTHING to do with the fighting game part of it, something is very wrong.

    Censorship, sexism, elitism… Ridiculous. It’s merely an attempt to put some focus back on the fighting in the fighting game, and it should be a complete non-issue for competitive players.

    • The costumes should be a non-issue too. There’s no point trying to hide what the game is or be ashamed of it. It is what it is, banning cosmetic options is pointless. It certainly is censorship. If it’s applied unevenly between male and female characters then it certainly is sexism. It might not be worth arguing about, but they’re not unfair statements.

    • Except this wouldn’t be an issue if nobody was making it an issue. The focus was never off the fighting game until somebody got rustled by a woman in a bikini.

      • I would disagree with that. Maybe for the people who are competing in the tournaments but for somebody outside looking it isn’t. When I think of DOA it is more about it being a boob jiggle simulator first and a fighting game second.
        I think that is the reason they are trying to implement this, not sure if it will work but who knows

        • You don’t sell a game or a community by pretending it’s something it isn’t. Show it for what it is, people can make up their own minds if it has merit for them or not.

    • I bet it is an non-issue for the majority of competitive players. The backlash would be mostly from people who don’t even take part in the tournaments.

  • Ohhhhh, the costumes on the characters. I thought they didn’t want people dressing up.

    Banning their own content from their game sounds pretty stupid.

  • This is what they were wearing when they were banned, tell them they were asking for it

  • Seems a bit sily considering the bikini dlc comes with the pre ordered version of the game lol

  • Why don’t they just play something else? Or host a different tournament? There only 1 fighting game and it’s this?

    Developers and designers of this game never thought about this? Do people know those costumes were intentionally put there?

  • I’ve never taken DoA seriously. It’s first and foremost pure fap fodder, a series I see exclusively as a source of tittillation, hentai doujin and 3D porn movies, and I always wonder why anyone would choose to ever play a male character in it. Maybe it IS a decent fighting game in its own right, but who cares? It’s all about the bazumbas.

    If the game’s community wants to do something about this perception then I can only say… it’s WAY too late for that.

    • I’ve played the 3DS chapter and I gotta say while the game is obviously over-sexualized the game’s pretty good and fun, takes a lot of skill to play and I enjoyed it a lot playing with my cousin, sexualization or not the game stays the same gameplay-wise, if u can’t accept that u’re either a feminist or a sexist I’m sorry to say, it’s just costumes in a virtual game, it’s not like they’re showing nipples, pussies and dicks jesus christ.
      I’m not annoyed by this ban as a competitive player, cuz it makes no difference for me, I can hold on my male instinct while playing, but I can’t accept this on the outside, this is censorship nothing more nothing less.

  • This is amusing, you have sexy outfits and people kick up a fuss, then you try and ban em and people STILL kick up a fuss. I’ma grab some popcorn and see how it all turns out

      • It’s more one doesn’t usually see those people talking to each other when this stuff arises. I know full well people have differing opinions ^_-

        • Go into any internet shit-fight, you’ll see them talking.

          (Better yet, don’t. They aren’t much fun, after the first few.)

  • Whilst I’m not a fan of censorship, some people have a point. When I think of DOA, I think of floaty boobs. I don’t see this so much as a ban but more as a dress code. On the other hand, we can’t discount what we don’t know about this community, it’s quite possible outsiders are being entirely judgemental on this and people should be able to express themselves in confronting ways, safely and it seems that’s part of the appeal of this community for some.

  • As a tournament organiser I can see the merit in something like this.

    With that said, looking at the specific costumes being banned, that list is a rush job, full of inconsistencies. Some fairly simple outfits are getting bans, others that should be banned aren’t. There’s even an instance of the exact same costume being available to one character and banned for another. Seems like regular, even more conservative swimwear needs to be censored, but if you happen to have a thing for slutty bunny costumes you’re in the clear.

    I expect TOs to at least follow the principle, but also make decisions about specifically what to ban of their own accord.

  • On a separate discussion, it’s disappointing to see that even when the fighting games community makes strong inroads to tackle sexist behaviour, Kotaku writers find a way to turn it into a smear piece by spotlighting the malcontents upset about it.

  • So is that lei glued to her chest? No need to get into sexism. I object to that on the grounds that it’s just really weak design.

  • They’re just salty that DOA won’t ever be taken seriously as a competitive fighter (See EVO et al). They think doing this will make the game more attractive competitively, the problem is it just isn’t.

    • ‘They think doing this will make the game more attractive competitively’
      Yeah, no.

  • Errr…Private companies can censor whatever they want actually. They’re not bound by freedom of speech/expression on their private commercial platform (in this case a game…)

    Consumers can vote with their wallets and, (Shock horror!!!), not buy the game?

    • Was anyone arguing that they couldn’t do it? I thought the gist was that people think they shouldn’t do it.

      It’s not about buying the game or not, it’s about participating in the tournaments where this ban exists. This ban was done by community leaders/tournament organisers, not the developers. With the push to increase tournament viability for the game, it’s not as simple as just choosing not to participate in tournaments run by these organisers, because doing that fragments the community and could put a nail in the coffin of the tournament scene for the game. Trying to persuade the organisers to change their minds seems like the most beneficial action for everyone involved.

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