DMC: Devil May Cry was revealed to the world at the Tokyo Game Show back in late 2010 and it was understandably meet with much controversy. It would be the first in the series that would not be developed internally by Capcom but a new 3rd party studio, Ninja Theory, a developer with two releases under its belt, Heavenly Sword and Enslaved Odyssey to the west. Both of these had the hack & slash, action that the old DMC was known for, despite the developers experience with the genre the announcement that it would be a reboot and the reveal of the new Dante had many gamers cry foul and the game has been in a 3 year long fan shit storm ever since.
Now that I had time to extensively play the PC version of the latest DMC. I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt that this is a great, if slightly flawed reboot but one deserving of your time, money and attention. Ignore the butt hurt crying fanboys on Metacritic who give this title 3s, 2s and even 1s and 0s, those guys are bullshiting you and keeping you from playing a badass action game.
As stated above, DMC: Devil May Cry is a reboot of the entire series and as such you don’t need to play any of the previous ones to understand the story here. The basic premise is that the demon king Mundus is close to controlling the world through dept but he has one last loose end that threatens his dominion, the son of the demon knight Sparda and the angel Eva, Dante. A badass demon hunter who’s smack talk would make even Spidey proud.
Dante must rediscover his true heritage and with the aid of his fellow demon slayer brother Vergil and psychic Kat, bring down the demon king all while killing hordes of demons with slick style.
The old DMC games never had storylines that were that particularly well written and honestly they were pretty mediocre, except DMC3 which in my opinion is the only one from the old series to actually try and have an engaging emotional story. The same can be said for the reboot as Ninja Theory put a lot of care and attention to the plot and particularly the characters.
Before Dante was a brick, he was always a smart ass demon killer but that was about as far as his personality went and he only underwent a small, barely noticeable change after the death of his brother in DMC3. Here Dante starts out like this but as the story progresses he learns more about his past and actually develops as a character while still keeping his badass factor, a difficult feet that easily could have gone horribly wrong.
The dialogue is also vastly improved from the old series, here it does still have some cheesy moments but like the new universe, the dialogue and characters are much less over the top and more down to earth and the writing for the dialogue for the most part keeps in line with the new tone, don’t expect to hear anyone say…. to fill your soul with LLLLLLLLLIIIIIIIIGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!
For the first time in the series motion capture is used for the cut scenes and Ninja Theory is no stranger to this. Their previous tittles also used mo-cap and you can just feel all the emotion coming off the characters, especially the eyes. I can’t explain it but NT just has a way of doing eyes so that through them you can see what a character is feeling without them uttering a word.
The only negative thing I could say about the story is the change to Spardas background, making the very family of Sparda being a crucial plot point and one that actually allows Dante to develop as a character is used well, I felt that changing Sparda from this legendary badass demon who rebelled against his own kind to help humanity to a tragic romantic was just a bad idea.
But what about the gameplay? Sure the different styles from the old series are gone but I myself never really cared for them and I just stuck to which ever one the game started me out on. In the reboot you have a vast assortment of different weapons and with a push of a button you can instantly switch between them on the fly.
This means that you could in theory use every single weapon at your disposal in one awesome combo, and you will need to do this because of the style meter. In DMC the style meter basically shows you how well you’re doing and the better the style rank, the more orbs you get, you can gather upgrade points faster and it gives you a better score once you beat the level. So using your weapons and diversifying your attacks is encouraged and extremely fun. If you can make up a combo in your head, chances are you can do it in the game.
Upgrading your powers also works differently from before. In the old series you spent red orbs to buy upgrades for your abilities or get new attacks. That’s still intact here but once you spend a point on an attack or ability, you can take the point away and spend it on something else. This allows you to truly fine tune the way you want to play and it adds to the combat variety considerably.
The platforming here is a fairly simple afair, you have two types of grapling hooks. One to bring things closer to you and one to get you close to something, while these can be used in combat, their primary function is for platforming and it is really well done. Grapling from one spot to the next like Spider-Man and constantly shifting your hook and jumping ability makes the platforming simple to learn yet difficult to master but its always a blast to do.
For the most part the games difficulty is balanced and you’ll never feel like you’re in an impossible situation. Enemies will come at you from everywhere and don’t be surprised if you see about 20 of them all ganging up on you. You will need to use everything at your disposal to defeat them and there’s nothing more satisfying that killing a crap load of demons without even getting a scratch. The only bad part about the gameplay is the lack of lock on, many times I found myself grappling towards the wrong enemy and it would sometimes cost me my life and rank. The PC controls can also be a bit problematic at times but you can customize them to your liking so it’s no big deal.
A glaring problem are the boss battles, besides two of them they are pretty generic and easy to beat. Generic in the sense that they have this glowing red spot on their bodies and you just hammer away at it to kill them. Pretty disappointing considering the fact that DMC has one of my all time favorite bosses with the Savior from DMC4. Here a lot of them are easy to do and require next to no actual skill. Just do the same sequence or attack over and over and you win.
Graphics wise DMC: Devil May Cry looks pretty damn good, not as good as DMC4 in my opinion but that could just be a taste thing considering the fact that it has a vastly different art design and tone from the fourth game. Despite it slightly lacking in the looks department, the sheer level design is brilliant. Once you get tossed into limbo and you see the city twisting and turning all around you it just looks fantastic and the news station levels were particularly impressive.
The title also has a huge amount of content, the various difficulty modes and hidden unlockables will keep you coming for more and the Hell and Hell difficulty setting in which you die with one hit but all the enemies take much more damage and in which enemy placement is completely randomized was fucking insane.
As far as PC specific features go, game is one of the better ports that have come out. You’ve got V-Sync, HD textures, anti-aliasing, shadows, fully remapable key bindings and you have 60 frames per second (the console versions only have 30). So if you’re a PC gamer like myself, get it on that because it’s the best version of the game.
In conclusion, DMC: Devil May Cry is a great if slightly flawed reboot but one that improves the formula of its forefathers and delivers a fun and stylish world full of awesome action and gross demons to slay, I cannot wait for the next one. Oh and do me a favor, tell the jack offs on Metacritic to piss off because those guys are lying to you and the rest of the gaming community, support this game and this developer because they deserve it. All the raging fanboys deserve at this point is a swift kick to the jewls.
FINAL VERDICT: B