Devil May Cry
Dante is a private investigator with the devil in his blood, literally. 2000 years ago, Dante's father, Sparda, walked side by side with the demon horde that was about to rain fire upon the world. But Sparda awoke to justice and turned on the demon horde, vanquishing their plans of global genocide. Sparda then went on to take a human wife and live out his days as a defender of humankind.
Fast-forward to today and we find Dante accepting only cases that have demon involvement in the hopes of finding out more about himself and his father. Who was he? What is Dante's place in this world? Well, more questions are about to crash in Dante's front door as the mysterious woman, Trish, shows up and tries to kill him. She fails, then she quickly asks him for help on Mallet Island, an isle teeming with demons that appear to be gathering for another assault on mankind.
Gameplay, Controls, Interface
As Dante, you will be expected to stop the evil manifesting on Mallet Island. Fortunately for you, Dante possesses enough fighting moves to challenge anyone in the Tekken, Soul Calibur or Dead or Alive games. Not to mention the fact that he uses his dual pistols Ebony and Ivory like any one of John Woo's action stars. Can you say The Killer? So, with all this firepower and fighting ability, what does that actually get you for $49.99? Well for starters, let me say this; Devil May Cry (DMC) is one of the easiest action games to control and play. Dante has hair-like trigger responses and switches from firepower to sword swinging action in the blink of an eye. Doing the sword fighting combinations is relatively easy and the learning curve is short. No sooner do you power up your PS2 than will you be turning bad guys into giblets as easy as you dip your chip into salsa. Don't get me wrong, the game itself is not super easy by any stretch of the imagination, and you will get your ass kicked on more than one occasion. However, it could very well be the most entertaining ass kicking you will ever receive. Plus, as you adventure through the game, other moves will become available to you, allowing you to strive to be the most effective demon-slayer you can be.
As you play the game there are several important facets you should keep in mind. After all, this isn't just mindless button mashing. Instead, players are encouraged to really use Dante's attack combos and special moves in order to extract more red orbs out of fallen bad guys. In essence, if Dante were to slay one of the demons called Marionettes merely using simple slash attacks, it would release one red orb. That's right. One. Red. Orb. But if Dante kills the demon Marionette using combos and special moves, when the marionette dies it could spill forth many more red orbs. A small word also appears at the top of the screen indicating how well the game thinks you fight. This word is also reflective of how many orbs you receive after slaying a demon; cool, stylish. Compliments abound.
In order to successfully beat the game, players will need to jack up Dante's stats and powers. In this game, the basis of character improvement falls to the red orbs, which can be found throughout the game both on the floors, hidden in destroyable objects and, as I mentioned, in the demons themselves. Collecting these red orbs allows Dante to buy/upgrade at a Divinity statue (a kind of way station located throughout the game). An example would be the purchase of a A? blue orb. Once Dante has found or purchased four blue orb shards they make one full blue orb, which increases Dante's strength/health meter. There are several other items/attributes that Dante can purchase once he finds one of the Divinity statues, which will recognize the red orbs as the blood of destroyed demons and allows Dante to benefit from it.
When Dante starts off the game he is equipped with the aforementioned handguns and the sword of his father. But as he adventures, he finds other weapons like a shotgun, grenade gun and two very special weapons; Alastor, the thunder sword, and Ifirit, the flame gauntlets. These two weapons allow Dante to use the very powerful Devil Trigger moves. When they are found, the Devil Trigger gauges take effect and start to fill as Dante attacks and takes damage from battle. Once they are filled and activated, Dante undergoes demonic transformations and unleashes powerful, devastating attacks upon his enemies. Dante can also purchase a devil star (which restores the devil trigger gauge) at the previously mentioned Divinity statue.
Since DMC started out originally as another installment of the Resident Evil series, exploration is a must. At every opportunity, Dante should try to destroy items, explore hallways and generally adventure since there is no telling what he may find. Items of interest include the red and blue orbs, the yellow orb that allows Dante another continue in the game, the green orb that repairs his health, and the various stars that increase his health or make him temporarily invincible while in Devil Trigger mode. Besides the previously mentioned weapons, there is the holy water, which damages all the demons in the area/room. The game certainly doesn't suffer from complacency.
Now, at this point I want you to realize that DMC is a full-on action game that will have you playing for hours on end with its really fluid controls. But in order for this to be a fair review, I need to mention a few small items. First off, the language translation from Japanese was done poorly on this American version. Jokes and basic conversation just don't seem right. Also, things like misspelled words and run-on sentences blot the dialogue landscape. With as much hype as Capcom has been trying to generate over the game, I would think they would have wanted it to be grammatically correct.
Next, I saw somewhat of an inconsistency as I played the game. Dante gets impaled not once, but twice through the chest with gigantic swords. One of those times he raises himself up through the blade and hilt, leaving what should have been a massive hole in his torso. The problem is, he never even takes any damage. The other time he even says a one-liner like being skewered is funny or something. I realize he is clearly more than human, but my point is this: if being impaled on giant swords has no effect on his health, why should he even worry about the weapons his enemies use on him. Shouldn't he be able to walk through this game with no problems? If a 10-inch thick blade rammed through his heart has no effect on him, why should Sin Scissors' demon weapons affect him? Sorry, but it really made me a bit curious. Maybe a more thorough Japanese translation would have explained things better, but as far as I know, this information was never conveyed either in the manual or the game.
October 25 marked the one-year anniversary of the PS2 in the United States, and while we have had our share of crap, we have had some really good games. We were promised incredible graphics and light sourcing and I must say that Devil May Cry has both. The transformations Dante undergoes feature some of the best light sourcing ever on a console system. Dante moves with the grace and finesse of a cat and has some really impressive attacks, reminiscent of Soul Calibur. The environments Dante adventures in are dark, dank places where one would expect to find demons. And speaking of demons, they are all designed originally and impressively. I love the way the Marionettes float around on spiritual strings, and the shadows reminded me of the specters from the game Ico scary stuff.
It's a gothic game, so you get an appropriate soundtrack. DMC features full-on gothic background music with Capcom's signature bad voice acting, and thankfully there isn't much of that. I wonder if now it has become a staple for them -- kind of like their trademark. God, I hope not. Fortunately, there isn't much talking, but there is a lot of gunplay, which sounds authentic. Tip to gamers: when playing DMC through your home surround system, turn it down or feel the wrath of your spouse as he or she runs downstairs at midnight yelling things like "Is someone breaking into the house?" Ah, the joys of a powered subwoofer.
Shinji Mikami, the man who thought up Resident Evil, has done it again. An easy-to-play yet challenging game. Cool looking monsters (something I watch for in particular) with impressive graphics mark this as an excellent first birthday present for the PlayStation 2. There will of course be comparisons to the other Capcom hit, Onimusha: Warlords. And, although the similarities appear predominant, they in fact are not. Two superior games in the same body, just different veins. Get Devil May Cry for some button mashing, demon slaying fun.
Download Devil May Cry
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP