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Team Ninja will soon be offering a free-to-play version of Dead Or Alive 5 Ultimate. Dead Or Alive 5 Ultimate: Core Fighters is in development for the PS3 and could come to the Xbox 360 as well.
Core Fighters allows you to play as Kasumi, Ayane, Ryu Hayabuse, and Hayate. They're available in every mode except Story, which costs $15 to unlock. All unlocked costumes, titles and Story mode progress will carry over from DOA5.
Additional characters can be bought for $3.99 apiece. The Core Fighters website indicates that they won't be offering any bulk discounts on them, either. If you want the full cast, then, you're better off buying the retail version of DOA5 Ultimate. All characters are playable in tutorial, enabling you to try out new fighters before making a purchase.
DOA 5 Ultimate, coming this fall to Xbox 360 and PS3, adds new modes and characters to the fighting game. Owners of Ultimate: Core Fighters will be able to face off online with owners of Ultimate playing on PS3. However, neither group will be able to play against gamers who own the normal DOA5 or its Vita counterpart Plus. This is due to the new moves and other multiplayer adjustments made in Ultimate.
The website for Core Fighters says it will be arriving on September 3rd.