Most of what we’ve heard about this reboot of Devil May Cry is people moaning about Dante’s hair not being white. In fact, there’s even a little joke about his new barnet during the first level of the game but fear not, finish the game and you’ll be able to play through the levels again with a new shade of short haircut that might appease you.
Fans of the older games will also be pleased that Cambridge based developers Ninja Theory have also done a good job of combining the hardcore gameplay of stringing combos of moves together to rack up SSS rank and a more contemporary storyline that transcends the game into an enjoyable romp if you like to play games to immerse yourself into a new world.
This time around Dante’s bending over backwards to kill all manner of demons in the spiritual world of Limbo with the help of his Nephilim (half-demon half-angel) brother Vergil and a human who can see into this other realm called Kat. You’ll be combining up to 9 weapons as you do this that can get a little confusing at times as you try to figure out which trigger to press to activate a demonic or an angelic weapon which include swords, pistols, scythes, axes, shotguns and two whips that can be used to pull enemies towards you, pull you towards them or also leap and fly about the levels in search of secrets and to traverse more open levels where the only other option is falling from a great height. The game does lack a lock-on system however, which can be frustrating when some enemies require a specific attack. If there are too many on screen you sometimes can’t get a ranged attack to hit the enemy you’re aiming at which can lead to death and your combo meter draining down through the letters of the alphabet.
Collectables include keys you can find to open secret doors that let you play through challenges you can then try again in the menus to get better times and scores, lost souls you can free if you’re an achievement hunter and other items you can use to fill up your health, revive you from the dead or fill up your Devil Trigger meter so you can deal a serious amount of death and regain your health if you’re in a tight spot.
Although running on the Unreal Engine which to be honest is getting a bit creaky, the game looks pretty good. Thanks to the full performance capture Ninja Theory opted for when it came to acting, characters are believable and there are great moments during cut scenes which really pull you into the action. Boss fights are also a joy including a fun fight with a big slug called the Succubus and a really psychedelic fight with a demonic news anchor that’s like a cross between The Lawnmower Man and Rez.
Music also ups the ante even more with some fantastic heavy metal tracks and some dubstep thrown in there for good measure when you fight Joan Collins in her nightclub. It’s not really Joan Collins by the way, she’s just very, very baggy.
So to recap, fans of the original series may still be whining but this really is a very good fighting game that retains the fighting mechanic of the original but gives it a new spin that’s if anything a bit more accessible to people that may have found it too daunting in the first place. DmC gets the first Gamesweasel 9 out of 10 of 2013.