PS4 Game ReviewsDead or Alive Xtreme 3: Fortune Review

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Dead or Alive Xtreme 3: Fortune Review

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Graphics:

 

9.2

Gameplay:

 

4.3

Sound:

 

7.5

Control:

 

5.4

Replay Value:

 

7.0

Overall Rating:       6.0

 

 

Online Gameplay:

Not Rated

Publisher:

Koei Tecmo

Developer:

Team Ninja

Number Of Players:

1

Genre:

Genre

Release Date:

03/24/16

Somehow the over the top wannabe lothario Zack has another island, or has reconstructed his; I’m not quite clear on that. Let’s face it though, nobody is too interested in how Zack Island got here, just that it exists and that it has Dead or Alive beauties on it to play with. Well, it does exist and they are there, well some of them but more on that later.

Most of your favorite things are here and in this generation it all amounts to a couple of really good aspects and a lot of old things that have not been improved in any way. It was easy to discover why this game simply cannot ever come to American shores in its current recognizable form. That in itself is something that you will have to decide for yourself whether or not is a really good aspect or just a stupid idea. As a reviewer I’ll only be focusing on how well it works and scoring it. There’s the setup, now the serve:

Let’s start with one of the nice things and a high point of the game: the graphics and overall visual presentation. They are just gorgeous from start to finish. This Soft Engine 2.0 is a beaut’. Sadly the island does not have a great many places to it, but the ones that are there are well rendered for the most part (though the rocks you climb can look low on the poly count), the fact that everything carries a certain softness throughout is pleasing without being distracting. By that I mean some games are so soft they look almost like a constant motion blur. That is not the case here. Character models are crisp and clean. The high poly count makes them very agile with their moving parts, and amazingly they are not as overly squishy and swishy as their DOA5 Last Round counterparts which often stretched the believability of even fictionalized oversexualized anime-ized then de-anime-ized women. What does that actually mean? It means there’s nothing weird going on here with the visuals that will take you out of the experience. The water is extra watery and the skies are just so clear and free of pollution you have to see it to believe it.

Again, I think at this stage (hello, it’s a PS4 game) we should have a LOT more places to be (there really just seems to be a handful), but for what we do have the game’s graphical prowess impresses and bleeds into part of the other great bit about this experience: it’s very calming. What you see exudes relaxation, which goes along with the tone of most of the rest of the game. The sand is puffy; the trees are looking both entreating and soft as they sway in the distant breeze. The ladies are looking very alive and lively as they do activities and the island breeze catches their swimsuits in a realistic way.

It’s pleasing, appealing, and puts you in the island vacation mood.

There aren't as many wonderful things to say about the audio presentation. It isn't that there are glaring errors in the available audio but that little effort has been made to improve or add anything. This presentation feels identical in nearly every way to the game I am familiar with from 2003, perhaps with some things missing that could have stayed there. The girls don't say much and Zack is straight up annoying. To the actors' credit, when a girl turns you down you can really feel the rejection in their voice. When they are excited you can tell that too, so that's good however brief.

The music is suitably calm and enjoyable around the relaxation areas and activities while being just the right amount of congo bongo fun for the volleyball games. There doesn't seem to have been any special care put into the sounds in the casino, which is the kind of thing you might want to build up by the third console entry but okay I suppose the casino isn't the big draw here. All in all, again it sounds like we have a repeat of the 2003 game.

However unimpressive, once again the sound comes around to add to the general relaxing atmosphere. There is no doubt about the fact that much more could have been done and some sounds seem to be missing from the mix where frankly there ought to be something.

The gameplay for this “extreme” volleyball adventure is so tame it practically takes care of itself. I understand that the premise of the game stands partly on being understated so that the player can just lose themselves and not be bothered by in-depth mechanics but they are just often too simple to even be given credence as passable for entertainment for a neanderthal. And no, these games are not just for neanderthals. Some of us would like to have a little fun with the mini-games you know? Well, don't look for much outside of the volleyball.

You can butt battle at the pool, where you and another girl try to knock each other off a pool pad with your butts. Sounds kind of sexy but takes all of 20 seconds and you can either butt bash or try to dodge. Doing it comes down to the timing of luck. Strafe, or butt bash, or super butt bash by dodging then hitting O right away. This was not as fun as the old pool hopping game and it is simpler. Thankfully pool hopping is back! Race to the other side of the pool on foam blocks to win. Why is this one fun? Well, it's simple and has a sense of responsibility to it. Your path will be a set of face buttons, but it's not just QTE. You'll devise and maintain focus to cross the pool by tapping or holding the requisite button based on whether you want to lift off and skip a block or two, or try to balance your stride based on how close the cushions are. Mess up and you fall, go too slow and you lose.

There is also capture the flag, which is a very silly affair. Your girl challenges another at one of the available locations for the day. You both start out lying face down on the sand and have to reach the flag and grab it before the other. You mash the X button to run and tap another O to dive for the flag. Distances are hard to judge, it's not quite clear if the game wants you to be consistent with your mashing or fast or timely; in any case it again feels like a bit of luck and tapping like a maniac may not to a darn thing if the game just doesn't want you to win. That's not so bad though, some girls like it when you let them win :)

How about some rock climbing! Sounds fun right? Kind of a hard game to mess up. You can fuse tension with fun and let the gamer play with a few mechanics to get to the top. Or you can just have some cheaply done quick-time button presses to climb and that's it. At worst you may have to press two buttons at the same time.

Tug of war comes back with just one perk. Pull with the left d-pad, feint with the right, and pull back into position with X. That's it. What's the upshot? Wardrobe malfunctions are imminent.

Finally on to the volleyball. It hasn't changed much and thankfully, while simple has a bit more to it. Honestly the lack of change is okay with me, this kind of volleyball was always almost like a semi-automatic experience. X spikes or sends the ball over, O sends the ball to your partner, the right stick controls your partner, and Square sets up your partner for a spike or hit. When serving you can do a sure-fire underhand with a down+X which will always go over the net and likely be sent back or an overhand spike with up+X which you have to then strike with X at the sweet spot or risk hitting it into your own net and losing a point. If you get good at this you can exploit it on weak players. The game will tell you how good each girl is at the game when you are deciding who to take on in the sand.

No doubt about it, the volleyball is the heart and highlight of the fun. Sinking back into my chair felt like sinking back into the chill days I spent with the original game. I kid you not, I even used it to my advantage to calm me down before a stressful medical procedure. Yes, the appeal of this otherwise flawed game has a certain something to it that people pop pills to get. Unofficially you can possibly "finesse" the ball with the d-pad on contact according to some players but the game offers no mention in the controls.

Right here before I go onto the other entertainments I'd like to lodge my complaint that for a game that is supposed to be a beach volleyball girl ogle-fest at worst, it is lacking in the girl department. You won't even see all of the female characters from DOA5 here. You get 9 out of 15 and they were selected in a silly way I don't have space to waste talking about. In any case It seems odd for one thing, and to not have your favorites that you like to fight with to take on vacation in this day and age is perplexing. Okay, rant aside, let's move on.

The rest of the gameplay encapsulates what you'll be up to when not playing with the gals. Sadly, this too has not changed much. You can shop at the sports shop for bikinis and Zack of all Trades for general gifts. It's up to you to sort of guess what each character is into, or you can of course use an online guide. The game will tell you which wrapping paper each character likes, but you can't just get someone their favorite thing and hope they will love to be your partner. In fact they may cruelly reject you outright, so build your inroads slowly with small gifts and little contests. Once somebody has something, you'll have insight into how they feel about the item or swimsuit once you play as them. If you've played the other DOAX games or the fighting games you may have some idea of what gifts or swimsuits the gals will enjoy as you give them as gifts to woo them to your side.

You can win your money doing activities and winning volleyball games and taking on Zack's challenges (which are basically just instructional). There is normal money and Zack tickets. And guess what? You can buy Zack tickets online with real money! (insert grumbling here). If you're insane, you can try to win more at the Casino, which hasn't changed from a lame set of screens with blackjack, poker, and roulette. Honestly, they could have had a glitzy, attractive casino here with the ladies present. Or even Rio, the card dealer who was so popular she even got her own anime show spinoff. If you are a big spender at the casino apparently there's a VIP status that will entitle you to see a special dance. Though I can't say I'm in the VIP club yet as the in-game casino seems just as rigged as the real ones like we have in my home state of Minnesota, not even as kind as the Vegas ones which let you win from time to time to keep it going.

So I suppose we should move on to the seamy underbelly of this operation. Or, the totally benign aspect that anybody could have fun with if they didn't read every piece of overly sensitive facebook garbage into it. In truth, how this function goes is up to you. That said, it is obviously meant to be exquisitely perverted by the people who made it. That is the selling point and that is why we will never see the game in its current state in the west. And honestly, without that, there's almost no reason to bring it here anyway.

So heads up, here comes owner mode. With the click of a button you can move from controlling your girl to being the owner. It's your job to show the girls a good time. That means buying them gifts, which is extra hard to do with few ways to make money. You even get an Owner Shop where extra special swimsuits are sold from time to time. Thing is, they often take those pesky Zack tickets you will probably need to buy if you aren't willing to put tons of time into the game.

The other thing about owner mode is that it flips the script on an old favorite. There's a thing in Japan called “gravure.” You buy a video of a beauty in one or several outfits posing in one or several locations. Non-nude and not blatantly sexual. The original DOAX had such a mode, where for something like 20 or 30 seconds you could watch your gal do a few stretches and poses at one of the locations. Well things have taken a turn which you can either make dark, or you can just have fun with.

To have fun with it, just hit R1 and at any time in the hotel as your girl poses sexily on her bed or while relaxing in and around the pool you can bring up a camera to take and save pictures. You can also set up volleyball games, butt battles, flag captures, and rock climbing where all you do is take pictures of the girl or girls in their finery. Pretty fun stuff if you act like a photographer from Sports Illustrated for the Swimsuit Edition. If you want to take the more perverted path you certainly can. That's what it's there for. You can take pictures of any of the girls doing anything they do from any angle, position, or zoom location you can imagine. I seriously mean that. If you want you can swing your viewpoint inside/beneath the rock wall a girl is climbing to zoom up into areas that only her fictional 3D modeled boyfriend should have access to. And that, ladies and gentlemen is how DOAX3 suddenly became a voyeur game.

This is not an understated ability, some of Zack's challenges really push you to stay on top of your voyeurism. Before you know it you'll have hundreds of lewd photographs to share with your friends. It's clear that this ability is meant to make up for the fact that the rest of the game is missing just about everything it needs except that wonderful chillaxed feeling. The biggest problem with this ability as I see it is actually the controls. They are pitiful and make no intuitive sense, making it hard to get the great action shots or whatever it is you're actually after in the first place. Still, it's a DOAX game so if you just start shooting you will get something good.

While no pixelated women are harmed in the making or playing of this game, it has to leave you wondering what made them think this turn was a better idea than expanding the gameplay and appeal of the first (I know the second didn't go over well) in order to make a fun vacation volleyball game where everyone can have a little guilty pleasure fun rather than a smaller number of gamers having a lot of NC-17 rated fun.

When it comes to replay value it's all over the place. You've got all 9 girls to take on vacation as much or as little as you want, tons of stuff to buy, relationships to build, and preferences to learn. I mentioned before that the relaxed feel of goofing off on the island was like popping a pill, well as you know pills can be addicting. So too can the chill you get from beach volleyball and maybe even some of the other activities if you don't mind the utter simplicity to them.

The good: It's gorgeous and relaxing. And a "6" is considered a "Good" game by the way. Barely, but it is.

The bad: It has restrictive controls, lacks locations and does little to engage the player's interest beyond the sexual.

The ugly: Well, nobody is ugly here but many would say that what you are allowed to do can be.

 

5/6/2016 David D. Nelson

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New Comment System


Legacy Comment System (25 posts)


WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 1:15:56 AM
Reply

Yeah it's coming a little late, but better late than never right? Besides, you know you were curious anyway ;)

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gumbi
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 1:43:34 AM
Reply

I just have to say. Thank you for The good, The bad, and The ugly. I don't think I can read a review at PSXE without it :)

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 9:44:08 AM

You are welcome sir!

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Banky A
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 3:39:25 AM
Reply

I love that Tecmo and Team Ninja can release a 6.0/6.9 recreational fan-service like this and still be the same people releasing a Godly title like:

NIOH.

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Oxvial
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 5:23:53 AM
Reply

When this spinoff exploits more the VR it gonna sell like pancakes.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 9:45:06 AM

I read somewhere it's gonna work with this title. If that's true, it's crazy to think of all the fapping that will take place. Nope, don't wanna think about it...

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Oxvial
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 4:51:26 PM

I also read that, World have you seen Pearl Jam's Do the Evolution video? I Imagine it gonna be like the fat guy that uses something similar to VR.

Still I see it as a positive, overpopulation problem gonna be fixed xD.

Last edited by Oxvial on 5/6/2016 4:52:48 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 5:24:48 PM

No I haven't, ... and now I'm scared to. lol

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Solid Fantasy
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 9:02:23 AM
Reply

If this hit NorAm for less than $20 I can see it warranting a purchase. For the fan base and maybe as something to play in jest when you're looking for a current gen drinking game with some friends.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 9:45:58 AM

Or if you are in Colorado, hit a little greenery.

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wackazoa
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 10:57:53 AM
Reply

It's a fetish. Creepy and pervy it is, but it is still a fetish. Although I think the biggest issue is and always be, you know it's possible some kid (who probably shouldnt) is gonna get his hands on this. But yeah, good for "taking one for the team" there World.

These games remind me of the old Leisure Suit Larry franchise. Gameplay is dumb, repetitive, and barely existent. The only point of the game is titillation, which honestly, your just better off watching porn.

Last edited by wackazoa on 5/6/2016 10:58:38 AM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 11:15:22 AM

Well as I've said I loved the first game for that relaxation bit, and I'll play this from time to time for the Volleyball. Lots of kids are going to play this I bet, hell if I was 13 I'd be all over it like a giggling dufus. But whatever.

And honestly like most I can be pervy dude in my private life, you've seen me defend the explotation of pixelated women on here before. I like my comics and games women to look GOOD. I like some fetishy things, we can all get freaky with our gfs and wives but yeah I'm not going to get involved myself in the creepier aspects of this game.

It seems redundant here, since there is DOA porn. They should have just made a great vacation game with the girls man!

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 5/6/2016 11:17:56 AM

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TheHighlander
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 11:21:31 PM

What's a fetish?

Seriously, liking pretty women with great legs, big, perfect boobs and butts is a fetish now?

Come on, that's non-sense. Men, and women too, respond to the visual appeal of a female form, there's been actual research that has shown that.

I'm honestly sick and tired of men apologizing for being male, and accepting the 'common' wisdom that enjoying near naked models is somehow wrong or perverse. If it's perverse or wrong, the God help Humanity. I mean really, the logical extension of this kind of reaction to clothed virtual models pole dancing is that men are bad for finding women attractive. I'd like to hope that's not what you mean.

Now, before anyone goes and overreacts to my comment let me make a couple of things utterly clear. Anyone mistreating, marginalizing, abusing, exploiting, acting prejudicial or patronizing towards women is being a jerk. Don't even get me started on the assholes who were involved in the whole GamerGate thing ad the actions taken against women who'd done nothing worse that state an opinion. That kind of behavior is wrong, criminal and reprehensible.

The biggest problem I have with this non sense is simple, there is an assumed link between supporting women's rights and feminism and denigrating anyone who likes titillating entertainment.

But back to DOAX3. The xenophobia and presumption about Japanese culture that comes out in much of the criticism is real. The moral superiority of people saying that those who enjoy this kid of thing are perverts or worse, smells, horribly. Western culture is going through a puritanical phase, but it is utterly hypocritical.

Also, the Gravure models that Worlds mentioned are little more than what used to be called Glamour shots here. Of course, if you search for Glamour models now, you'll find a crap ton of soft core porn, and very few clothed models looking pretty. By contrast the Gravure that Worlds mentioned is about sexy models in awesome outfits - yes non-nude.

I'm sorry to rant, but this is a topic I find quite interesting. So much so that I have been working on a longish article on this and related matters. I think I will break it in two, and publish as soon as I can get it edited.

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Ignitus
Saturday, May 07, 2016 @ 12:42:25 AM

Yeah I don´t get why we are supossed to dislike boobs, legs, butts and sexy girls now days. It doesn´t make any sense.

I understand that women don't get it. We think and look differently. But guys falling for that speech? Come on.

It's a shame that we didn´t get this game here.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, May 07, 2016 @ 10:29:32 PM

You have to play it to get it, it's the voyeurism fetish, that you can zoom your camera up into her crotch and watch it and take pictures that THATs what the mechanic is for. Not that we aren't supposed to like hot women.

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TheHighlander
Saturday, May 07, 2016 @ 10:50:51 PM

That's not a fetish, that is a natural conclusion of having camera control in a game. If I had 1 cent for every time some player used the camera controls to obtain an upskirt, or unflattering angle, I'd be richer than Bill Gates. You say that the mechanic is there specifically for crotch shots. I'd say that is *your* chracterization of it, and not what the actual mechanic is.

The actual mechanic is camera control where you can tilt and pan the camera and zoom in or out, exactly the same camera control I have in FFXIV. I feel like you've fallen into the trap of making an assumption about the game and mechanic.

Lets face it, any realistic game with free camera control gets used that way sometimes, but that doesn't mean that is what the mechanic is for.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, May 07, 2016 @ 11:08:34 PM

It's clear because nothing else was done to update the game but add this ability. All other games I've played have a stopping point for the camera, where it has a limit to how much "extra fun" you can have to peep on your cute girls. We all like to right? This one has no limit on purpose.

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 5/7/2016 11:14:31 PM

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Ignitus
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 8:33:46 PM
Reply

I don't read reviews but I just HAD to read this one, to know how it turned out.
I want this game, I enjoyed the first two very much.
The game play was very solid. Even my two sisters couldn't put the controllers down. I had to wait like forever so I could play some volleyball matches against one of them. Heck, for the first two days I couldn't play at all. Though I admit it was fun watching them play.

World, in the first game you could move the camera and zoom in to your girl celebrating every time she scored a point. This feature was taken away in the second game. Is this feature back or is still missing? It was a fun feature.

From where did you get this game. I want to get it too.

Thank you for covering this game.

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TheHighlander
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 11:21:47 PM

Play Asia

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Ignitus
Saturday, May 07, 2016 @ 12:36:24 AM

Thank you Highlander. Finally a page with decent prices.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, May 07, 2016 @ 10:30:52 PM

You know what I have to test that out to see actually.

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TheHighlander
Friday, May 06, 2016 @ 11:39:37 PM
Reply

You know Worlds, I have a copy of DOA Paradise for the PSP. This is essentially the same basic game but with 10000 times better graphics. Even the cutscenes with the girls getting gifts seem almost word for word the same, not that this is a problem mind you, I'm just noting it. Especially because that game had more f the Girls in the game, and Rio too.

DOA Paradise has a pole dance sequence as well, which is damn near impossible to get to. I suspect the same is true with this game, it will take some serious dedication to get to the underbelly of Zack's resort.

You know my scale of review, and I'm not sure this game deserves higher than a 6.5, but it also doesn't really deserve criticism for being what it is. KT and Team Nina have made no bones about what the game is, no one should be surprised.

Also, please note that the models depicted are all 18 or older, even Marie Rose, who seems to be a big point of contention because she has a young look and smaller assets than the other girls. I'm not sure when it became true that a smaller bust line equates to underage, but that appears to be the logic of some. One thing that people have to remember is that Japanese women are typically of shorter stature, and more petite than western women, their facial features also give them a younger look. The net result is that culturally, Japan's ideal of beauty will superficially appear to be younger than a western ideal would.

Either way, what does it matter, they are pretty cartoons, why not enjoy them?

Funnily enough having played DOA Paradise, the thing that the game reminds me most of is doll (fashion and Asian BJD) collecting. A lot of collectors dolls will dress their dolls provocatively and take pictures, lots of pictures. It's their hobby and they really enjoy taking pictures, composing the scene, choosing the outfit, and even polishing the image afterwmards. And before anyone says it, I'm not talking about Otaku with Waifu or huge Figma collections, I'm talking about a group of largely female collectors from countries around the world (including Japan) who enjoy their sexy dolls.

Final point for this post. When someone says that you might as well watch porn, I strongly object to that. There is a *HUGE* difference between real women engaging in sexual activity and watching virtual women dancing in tiny bikinis. If you can't see the difference, I just don't know what to say.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, May 07, 2016 @ 10:32:35 PM

I have that game too, and this one is much less stable. I would never dock points for it being what it is.

Again, dancing and pole dancing and all that is wonderful, its what I want. I recommend you pick up the game and see if you don't get a twist in your stomach when you find out what you can do. You don't seem to be grasping the distinction I tried to make between the two. I guess I should have gotten more graphic about it but I was trying to be implicit.

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 5/7/2016 10:38:35 PM

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TheHighlander
Saturday, May 07, 2016 @ 10:56:07 PM

I probably will get the game, my wife liked the videos, including the silly pole dancing, she thought the you tube dudes trying to zoom in on specific points were hillarious.

I completely understand what you're talking about, but I don't see a distinction to be made. If we start policing games based on the potential for 'mis-use', we're getting into policing people's thoughts. I'm certain you wouldn't support that.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, May 07, 2016 @ 11:11:04 PM

I'm with you on the fact that they shouldn't be policed, I think the game SHOULD be here. But I do believe that voyeurism is much more frowned upon in the west and that's why it isn't coming here. It's the main feature.

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