DmC: Devil May Cry is an action-adventure game with hack and slash elements. It was developed by Ninja Theory and published by Capcom on January 15, 2013 worldwide for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. It was released a week later on PC. DmC is a reboot of the original Devil May Cry series that was first released in 2001. Capcom requested that series be reimagined, which led to DmC being made from a Western perspective this time.
I never had a chance to play the original Devil May Cry series and I was never very interested in it. Whenever DmC was announced I thought I might give it try but quickly lost interest in it. After hearing positive things about the reboot, I figured I would give it a shot.
The Devil May Cry series has always focused on a character named Dante, and DmC is no different. DmC is set in an alternate reality in the Devil May Cry universe. Dante is a man with supernatural powers that is constantly thrown into an alternate world called Limbo. Limbo is infested with demons of all kinds, and by this point in Dante’s life he has grown used to kicking their ass. Eventually Dante runs into a woman named Kat and his life is thrown into chaos. He quickly finds out he is the son of a demon and an angel and that the city is actually controlled by demons. After learning some more important information, the story turns into one of revenge and freedom.
After playing through the God of War series, which is also a hack and slash game with a revenge story, I figured that this would be more of the same and I would get tired of it really quick. That was as not at all the case however. Although most of the game is quite predictable, I found it to be extremely enjoyable to find out Dante’s past and seek out the demons controlling the city. And maybe it is because I didn’t play the original series, but I found Dante to be one of the most original bad asses I have ever played as. His character development was incredible to experience because he is a completely different person by the end.
The most significant thing to most fans of the original series regarding the presentation of DmC is the fact that Dante now has black hair instead of silver/white hair. Many fans expressed their hatred for the character redesign before the game was released, but this didn’t cause Ninja Theory to back down. I for one am happy Dante looks the way he does. Part of the reason I never picked Devil May Cry up was because I thought the old Dante looked goofy. I know that may be a little shallow, but it is what it is.
Besides the character redesign, the rest of the game looks very nice. It will not blow players away graphically, but it was still pretty. Environments are full of color, even though some are redder than others. There are all kinds of effects going on throughout each level, such as ghost like figures walking around. When Dante is in Limbo the environment morphs into a crazy ever-changing landscape. The floor breaks apart, walls move around, buildings shift around, and new platforms appear that can be moved as well. This always made the environment appealing to look at because it changed so often, and you never knew what was coming.
DmC realizes it’s fast pace battles by including a loud sound track of what seemed to be death metal/hard rock music. This made the battles much more enjoyable than they would have been if there had not been any music at all or just low background music.
As previously stated, DmC is a hack and slash game. Most hack and slash games are extremely repetitive and dull unless the developer can come up with a creative way to keep things fresh. Ninja Theory was able to do just that. Dante is equipped with a sword, Rebellion, and twins pistols, Ebony and Ivory, from the beginning of the game. You perform combos with these weapons, but that isn’t all that exciting. Where things really start getting interesting is once Dante unlocks the ability to use his demon and angel weapons. You will unlock two slashing weapons for both demon and angel, as well as new guns with different effects. Each weapon is handled completely different in battle; therefore not all of them will be of use to you every time. It is very easy to switch between the many different weapons you find which make huge combos really easy to achieve. There are also several different types of enemies in the game: normal, angelic, demonic, etc. Each one of these enemies is weak to a different form of weapon. For example, when you come across a red demon, you can only use your demon weapons to do damage to them. Ninja Theory made it very easy to tell what each enemy is weak to by using color coding.
The action packed battle system was extremely fun to play. The fact that you are given so many weapons to use and that enemies aren’t weak to them all makes you approach each battle differently. This is something most mindless hack and slash games don’t have and should find a better way to incorporate.
Enemies drop red orbs that can be used to buy health, revives, etc. After gaining enough experience and beating certain portions of the game, you are awarded white orbs. These are used to upgrade each of your weapons and abilities. There are as few as 5 upgrades for some weapons and as many as 15-20. You can pick and choose which upgrades you want and can even erase one to use somewhere else later, so you are never stuck with what you choose.
There are also collectables around the environment, such as keys, doors, lost souls, and health items. This makes searching each level a little more exciting because if you find the right keys, you can unlock a hidden door to experience a “secret mission”. These missions are mini-games such as a race or battle against a big enemy with a time limit. You are rewarded if you can complete them.
The Verdict: 8.5 out of 10
DmC: Devil May Cry is everything I wanted God of War to be and then some. I am generally not a huge fan of the hack and slash genre of video games, but games like DmC could easily change that for me. Ninja Theory delivered a fast paced battle system that keeps you thinking on your feet with each and every fight. The story was a riveting revenge quest that showed off just how much someone can change when faced with great adversity. I thoroughly enjoyed my experience with DmC and hope that Capcom continues to produce this reboot version of the Devil May Cry series. I highly recommend everyone go out and play this if you haven’t already. It is a gem of a game that many have missed.