Honestly, I don’t really care much for the Gothic aesthetic of the series, nor do I have any sort of appreciation for the death metal soundtracks and overall overblown nature of the storylines and cutscenes.
So, what exactly is it that I do like about Devil May Cry?
That my friend, would of course be the bombastic, action-heavy gameplay of the series:
My introduction to the Devil May Cry came in the form of the 3rd, and best, entry in the series, Devil May Cry 3: Dante’s Awakening.
Featuring the highest difficulty level in the series to date, as well as perhaps the best, or at least, most relatable storyline, Dante’s Awakening effectively ruined me from enjoying any of the other games in the franchise.
Let it be known, beginning a game series from it’s highest peak in terms of overall quality, and then working your way down is not the way to enjoy a videogame franchise.
You see, I really enjoyed my time with Devil May Cry 3 on my PS2.
I played it to death, nearly beating it on the hardest difficulty in the process.
After I finally grew tired of 3 though, I made the mistake of thinking it would be fun to work my way backwards and play through the first game in the series.
I skipped that sack of fail Devil May Cry 2 though, as I’ve heard nothing but bad about that one…
From the moment I picked up the controller to play the original Devil May Cry, it immediately became clear to me that I was playing a vastly different, and far inferior game.
The gameplay was slower and less responsive.
The animations were less dynamic and felt very detached.
The attacks lacked the sense of “oomph” that was the highlight of the experience in the 3rd game.
Not only that, but due to the games’ age, the graphics and textures were somewhat lacking.
Needless to say, I found little enjoyment in playing the original Devil May Cry post-Dante’s Awakening, so much so that I saw fit to return it to Gamestop after only a few days.
Devil May Cry was a wonderful game for it’s time, serving as the progenitor of a new breed of fast-paced action games shortly after it’s release.
Despite it’s laundry list of credentials though, being the first of something doesn’t necessarily make it the best, or in this case, anywhere near that level of quality.
After the beating the ever-loving piss and shit out of Devil May Cry 3 in decidedly epic-fashion several years back, I found Devil May Cry 4 to be somewhat tame in terms of difficulty.
In general enemies were easier to stun, and more importantly, easier to corral and manipulate, resulting in the gameplay being much more forgiving, and ultimately flashier than ever before.
Since the release of Devil May Cry 3, Capcom went on to reinvent the Resident Evil series, and indeed; much game design in general, with it’s 4th entry.
In the post-Resident Evil 4 world of gaming, context sensitive button functions were very much en vogue, predictably resulting in Capcom’s own Devil May Cry 4 including several instances of said gameplay elements.
In fact, awesomeness can be visited upon most enemies with a simple touch of the “B” button:
Cheap thrills yes, but thrills nonetheless.
I will say this about him however:
His move-list is fun, inventive, and made all the better by the inclusion of the Devil Bringer in his arsenal.
The Devil Bringer is the chief innovation brought to the table in Devil May Cry 4, and for the most part, it’s worth the price of admission.
Trust me, yanking enemies over to your position for quick and efficient beat downs is a pleasure that far surpasses repeatedly Stinger-ing my way across an arena just to get to an out of reach opponent by leaps and bounds.
But then again, being able to do shit like this is pretty fun too:
While the game is a little bit on the easy side when compared to Devil May Cry 3, I’m willing to concede that that may in fact be a good thing.
Devil May Cry 3 was a beast.
It got off on taking eager young player’s confidence and shitting all over it like a fuckin’ pigeon perched above a Porsche.
4 however, is a prettier and more accessible game that even goes so far as to have a storyline (for those that give a shit) that requires virtually no knowledge of the prior games to understand.
Simply put, Devil May Cry 4 serves as a fine example of how to begin a series anew on a new platform.
While not as good as 3, 4 was an enjoyable entry in a young series that was desperately in need of a #2 best game in it’s lineup, as up until it’s release, none of the other games could be at all regarded as anywhere near the level of quality of Dante’s Awakening.
I understand that I’m being critical of the series, but as I mentioned earlier, Devil May Cry is a series that I want to like.
So far we’ve got 4 games in the series, and I’ve only liked 2 of them.
I don’t like the art.
I don’t like the music.
I hate the storytelling.
All I play them for is the raw experience of playing the game.
In that sense, 1:2 ain’t a bad ratio at all.
Which brings us to the newest Devil May Cry game, one that, to my knowledge; is intended to be a massive diversion from the core series.
Going by the name DmC, (Ugh…) this new game features a protagonist of a drastically different design aesthetic, as well as a game world that seems a little more urban, and less castle-like than previous entries in the series.
This would all be fine in my book, as I was never that attached to Dante or Nero as series’ protagonists, except for the fact that this new character’s design is just plain HIDEOUS.
At this point, all we have is a trailer to work from in terms of first impressions, however I for one feel my desire to give this game a shot slipping away purely based off of the character design:
That may sound petty of me, but unless DMC gets some truly fuckin’ incredible reviews chances are I’ll probably sit it out in favor of taking a step back and visiting some of other hardcore action game franchises out there, like the Ninja Gaiden series and Bayonetta.
Anyway, this has been a lengthy and intensely muddled post.
For this I apologize, but thanks for reading.