Virtua Fighter 5 Online is very traditional in its execution, with a pace somewhere between a fast-paced fighting game like Street Fighter and a slower-paced fighting game like Bushido Blade. There’s a very grounded, no-nonsense style to the fighting. No flashy bells and whistles, but at the same time, it’s got a very strong foundation, making it a good game for serious competition.
Fights take place in a square ring bordered by a fence, a wall, or nothing. With the usual fighting game conventions in place, the added possibility of being knocked out of the ring adds a tiny bit more complexity to the game. Not only is getting pushed toward the edge of the ring bad for the disadvantaged player, it could end the round altogether. Other than some rings having no border, however, the game’s stages are all nice, square, and flat, allowing for a balanced match, no matter what the stage.
Dead or Alive 4’s gameplay, on the other hand, is much faster-paced and a great deal more stylized. The fighting feels much more dynamic, as well. The Dead or Alive franchise was always big on “countering” enemy strikes. Almost any attack can be caught and reversed back onto the attacker, giving the game an added level of complexity, in addition to its faster pace and dynamic fighting.
Many stages in Dead or Alive make it possible for fighters to get knocked off. This, however, doesn’t end the fight like it does in Virtua Fighter. Kicking an opponent through a window or off of a bridge will damage the downed opponent heavily, however, the fight continues in the new location. This makes the game world seem more vibrant and alive, giving the feel of fighting in a living world, with its own obstacles and hazards.