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on 11 October 2012
UPDATE: Following the release of Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate (PS3) with its extensive training mode and new characters/moves this guide is probably not the best suited for that game, just the original DoA5 - even with all the great advice online (GameFAQs in particular) this guide was a very worthy resource none the less.

A few nice touches come with this guide, not least a 16 month poster/calendar for the rest of this and next year, its just the reveal image of Kazumi in a swimsuit again (it IS Dead or Alive after all) Also there is some decent concept artwork laid throughout the guide, surprisingly some of it isn't even in the collectors editions official art book so its a nice touch, but baffling as that art book could have done with more.

Unlockables:

This guide details what unlockables there are and how to get them, its brief and it gets to the point so rather useful but its nothing that can't easily be found online. It doesn't go into detail regarding trophies though, but no guide ever seems to anyway.

Strategy:

This is one of two areas I find this guide falters slightly, it tells you what to do during story fights, it tells you what moves and good tactics for every character but it does not tell you HOW to do everything. You are told how to beat story missions but it only guides you in how to beat the bonus mission, not just to clear the fight which in some peoples cases (like mine 'cause I suck at this game) would be more relevant. Also during combat training in game you may come across a move you simply don't understand, unfortunately the guide never tells you how to pull of each characters difficult moves either, not even an appropriate combo for a critical burst followed by a power blow.

With all that said you will get detailed analysis on each characters fighting styles, strengths, weaknesses and whos good in whos hands (i.e. for me... no body) and having the move set to hand is great for a complete novice like myself. It also explains what the symbols mean in combat training, which is a GOD SEND as after 3 hours before I got the guide I still had no idea what a black arrow meant (its hold btw) Each course is also explained in detail and seems rather comprehensive, I didn't use this part as I prefer to explore but it takes up quite a few pages and shows level hazards and boundaries so is surely useful.

Layout:

Another of the guides slight faults lies here, as a whole the layout is very intuitive and well developed, I know exactly where to find unlockables, characters move sets, strategies etc but there is one fundamental flaw in the character move set. You can of course use the contents to find which page each characters set is on but of course its much quicker just to flick through and look at what name appears in the header/footer as in most guide, 'cept this guide doesn't have that so the only way to know which characters set you're on is by the odd artwork or the contents, by no means is this a deal breaker but it can make finding move sets a bit fiddly, especially during tag matches.

Contents:

Well its all here, you have move sets, stage strategies, training strategies, character strategies, unlockables, concept art and a pretty(read-revealing) calendar/poster so no complaint here. If you're looking for an attractive guide with popping colours and lots of quality screen shots a-la Dark Souls or Final Fantasy XIII-2 you'll be dissapointed but this guide is laid out much better than those two and gets straight to the point.

All in all I found this guide to be helpful and at times essential, but I couldn't help notice there was more than one occasion where it simply didn't have the information I needed (The final boss was ridiculously annoying- a good tip not in the guide would be to loose 5 times first as then it goes easy on you) Hopefully at this rate I *might* be able to land a punch online but for now I'll settle with actually being able to understand whats going on, so I hope this review helped in any way.
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on 16 October 2012
As a massive fan of the Dead or Alive series and DoA5 on the Xbox 360, I decided to splash out and get this game guide. Unfortunately it turned out to be a real disappointment. It seems as if not much effort went into putting this thing together.
You would expect most official guides from Prima to feature loads of art from the game, detailed bios/info on all the characters/environments, easy to follow hints and tips etc etc. Well, not here! Most of what you get is page after page of difficult to understand data chart followed by wall after wall of text. This might be good for the very serious, competitive, and highly technical players, but for someone like me who plays for fun, it's no use and incredibly dull. Another thing I noticed was that the content page index is printed wrong so finding the info you need is made that little bit harder!
The art in this guide is a mixture of the occasional small, thumbnail sized screenshot with some REALLY bizarre looking hand drawn art. I'm not sure who drew the artwork but it's almost as if they'd never played the game before and were just going off rough descriptions of the characters.
I was expecting to get a full break-down of all the available character costumes, collectables and achievements. Instead what I got were about 4 pages at the very back of the guide with really generic copy/paste lists of the achievements/costumes and no supporting pictures or tips on the best ways to unlock them.
Maybe I'm being a bit harsh, but as a fan of the series I was really disappointed with this guide. You can easily find more useful and easy to follow info for free on most DoA fan sites! I can't recommend this guide and at a cost of £10 I'd say it's very overpriced. The fold out poster/calendar in the back was nice, though.
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on 28 February 2013
i liked the book tells you all you need to know and what costumes can be unlocked good price aswell
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on 24 September 2015
Great guide, even holds up well to this day (although not everything is still the same in LR/U). CAn still give some good strategy and general tips if your just starting DOA, or like me, picking up again after a five year siesta.
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