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Review

DmC: Devil May Cry Review

  • First Released
  • Reviewed:
  • PC

With assured storytelling, great combat, and imaginative design, DmC: Devil May Cry is a more-than-worthy reboot for a classic franchise.

'

There's a point in DmC: Devil May Cry where everything just falls into place, a point where--after being mollycoddled through hours of gentle combat--you're finally let off the leash. And at that point, chaos ensues. The gates of hell are opened, once-timid demons become tremendous horrors, and Dante transforms into a fighter of glowing theatrics and tense technical wizardry. Immense, over-the-top combos flow from the fingertips, unleashing all manner of visually enticing carnage with a precise, fluid feel. So entertaining is the combat, in fact, that it's easy to overlook what a wonderful achievement DmC is as a whole.

But to do so would do the game a great disservice. The story, for instance, is light-years ahead of previous games in the series. Where they were schlocky, B-movie tales of adolescent fantasy, DmC has a sense of restraint, and maturity. Not that it's entirely evident from the off. A slew of half-naked bodies and raucous rock music make for a less-than-enticing introduction to the new, modern-day Dante's world, where he lives the playboy lifestyle of booze, nonstop parties, and sleazy sex. It's only with the arrival of the hardened psychic Kat and the emergence of a frightening demon horde that Dante, and the story, begins to grow up.

What follows is a tale of evil, world domination, and love that weaves in touches of conspiracy theory and religious dogma to great effect. There's no denying that there's still a drop of Devil May Cry lunacy to it all, particularly in Dante's cheesy quips, but underneath that over-the-top exterior lies heart. There are real moments of drama and excitement that are coupled with some well-realised characters that walk a fine line between good and evil. It helps that they're backed by a terrific voice cast--especially the truly frightening villain Mundis--that delivers even the maddest of dialogue with the utmost sincerity.

DmC's greater focus on storytelling comes at expense of some freedom, but the game is no worse off for it. Gone is the tedious backtracking and repetition of Devil May Cry 4, replaced with an adventure that--for the most part--propels you forward at a breakneck pace. One moment you're escaping a blood-red city that's folding and crumbling around you, and the next you're infiltrating the offices of a famed TV network where the earthly world and that of Limbo have collided in an explosion of vicious demons and ghastly black ooze that drips from every wall.

Such is the variety in your adventure that it does an admirable job of glossing over the linear nature of the story. It helps, of course, that the action is exciting too. Dante is a man with some impressive physical skills that are augmented by an equally impressive range of deadly weaponry. Initially that weaponry takes the form of Rebellion, a sword with a medium speed and attack range that serves as the bedrock for combos.

With just a few taps it's easy to perform simple combos that cut a sharp path through enemies and launch them into the air where you can deal more damage before they explode into a wonderfully satisfying mess of gory blobs. It's not long before you reach the limits of what you can do with a single weapon, though, which makes the time it takes to gather new ones a tad grating. Still, once the game finally lets you loose with a bigger arsenal, the combat takes a rewarding turn. What opens up before you is a vast set of moves that can be smoothly chained together for some technically impressive and oh-so-gorgeous-looking combos.

The combat is done in a way that cleverly plays to the strengths of each weapon, and that of your opponents' weapons. For instance, lighter, angelic weapons like the Osiris scythe are geared towards juggling enemies in the air and dealing spinning swipes that take out large groups all at once. Heavier, demonic weapons like the Arbiter axe focus on all-out strength, pummelling demons into the ground with a hefty brute force, albeit at the expense of attack speed. Combine the two, and you can knock out enemies with the swifter, lighter weapon before neatly finishing them off with a deadly demonic blow.

As you gain more-advanced weapons and abilities, the combos that are open to you become more complex. Chains that let you pull yourself towards enemies, or pull them towards you, result in some explosive combos that see Dante zipping elegantly between enemies, dealing out brutal punishment between each throw of a chain. Then there are Dante's guns, Ebony and Ivory, which are ideal for dishing out short, sharp bursts of bullets and filling in the gaps between other attacks. Combine your moves, and the combat turns into a harmonious ballet of sword slicing, swinging, and all-out carnage that's not only impressive to look at, but delightful to perform too.

It's a fluid system that's easy to get to grips with. There's a trick to the timing that only practice can perfect, but the barrier to entry is low enough that even newcomers to the genre can dish out some tasty moves. And if you really want to get cocky, there are various moves that can be cancelled midway through their animations for chaining together even larger and deadlier combos. The neatly animated and gruesomely designed enemies add a level of complexity too. Some, such as eerie walking skeletons, are armed with shields that can be broken only with heavy weaponry, while others, like vicious blue mutant dogs, can be damaged only by your lighter, angelic scythe.

And there are others, like decrepit cherubs that hover in the air, that are ready to be pulled down to earth with a mighty whip of a chain, and huge, heavily armoured behemoths that can be destroyed only from a certain angle of weakness. Such variety means you can't simply sit back and hammer buttons to win; you have to make use of your brain as well as your thumbs to succeed. That alone makes for combat that's far more engaging than a run-of-the-mill hack-and-slasher. Plus, if you really want to spice things up, you can use Dante's stylish devil trigger ability to freeze enemies and take out a whole group of them in one huge combo.

The reward for all your hard work, aside from the visual payoff, are souls. Souls can be used to upgrade Dante's abilities and weapons, giving you new moves and increased power to play with. Indeed, there are quite a few moves, including Dante's famous Rainmaker, that are essential purchases for combo chasers. Upgrades that increase your power make some of the tougher enemies--particularly those towards the end of the game--a little easier to deal with. There's also the requisite Devil May Cry scoring system, which remains largely unchanged: the longer and less repetitive the combo is, the more points you get and the higher your rating.

Being awarded with, say, an A rating over a D rating is your primary incentive for perfecting your attacks, and striving for such perfection is compelling. That's down in part to the fact that the combat is so fun in the first place, and partly down to the end-of-level totals that let you see just how poorly (or brilliantly) you performed overall. And because everything is so well put together, you know that the shameful D is due to your own lack of skill, rather than any failure on the game's part.

Unfortunately, for all the greatness of the combat system, the boss battles are a big disappointment. It's not that they're inherently bad so much as that they're formulaic and, well, old. The fights follow the usual formula of learning each boss's repetitive movements, and then identifying key moments to launch an attack. All that time spent perfecting your combos and technique is simply of no use against them; you have to follow the plan or you die. They are at least a visually striking bunch, with the gruesomely bulbous and foul-mouthed Succubus being a particular standout.

The game peters out towards the end, both in its narrative and in its combat. The story takes a twist you can see coming a mile off, while later levels eschew combat for laborious platforming sections that don't live up to the excitement and action of what came before. Things fare a little better for completionists, who can check out the many trapped souls scattered in hard-to-reach places around each level, as well as the unlockable rooms that are filled with fun and sometimes very difficult challenges for you to complete. Those include trying to defeat a whole room of enemies without being hit, or platforming down a tricky obstacle course.

The great completionists, and indeed anyone up for a serious challenge, are catered to with a whole raft of different difficulty levels that are unlocked after you complete the game. You can, for instance, play levels with more-powerful enemies that come in different waves to the standard campaign. Or you can play a mode where every enemy dies with one hit, along with Dante. Or if you've really got it in for your own sanity, you can play a mode with the most difficult, hardcore, no-mercy enemies where it's game over after a single hit. Such is the joy of DmC's combat that even if you're not quite skilled enough to make it through those hardcore levels unscathed, it's still a lot of fun to try. And in those moments when the combo system clicks and you enter that Zen-like state of Matrix realisation to perform an epic SS-rated combo, little can raise a bigger smile or give you such a feeling of achievement.

DmC succeeds both in its story and in its brilliant combat, and it looks the business too. PC players get the benefit of enhanced resolutions, HD shadows and textures, and--most importantly for some--60hz and 120hz modes. The enhanced frame rate and visuals make for a very smooth experience, while the use of DirectX 9 means even older systems can get the best out of the game.

Sure, you may baulk at Dante's trendy new haircut, or maybe even miss a little of that B-movie Devil May Cry insanity, but the heart of what makes the series so enticing and so much fun to play holds true here. DmC pulls off that unlikely reboot trick of feeling fresh and inviting while still holding onto what made the original series so appealing and so special. There's no point in looking back: Dante has got a brand-new future in front of him, and if DmC: Devil May Cry is anything to go by, it's going to be a great one.

'
The Good
Tight, enthralling, and deep combat
Big variety of weapons and enemies
Imaginative demon designs
Convincing voice acting
Reboots the series without compromising its soul
The Bad
Boss battles aren't nearly as fun as regular combat
Ending doesn't live up to the rest of the story
8
Great
About GameSpot's Reviews
Other Platform Reviews for DmC: Devil May Cry

About the Author

Writer, riff maker, purveyor of fine foods. Mark currently spends his days trying to overcome his small (large) obsession with high-top trainers and mobile games. He's known to respond well to Long Island Iced Tea, falafels, and karaoke, but not necessarily in that order.

Discussion

80 comments
Sirkrozz
Sirkrozz

Superior Artistic and Character Design, solid combat system, stupidiest story ever told on a Capcom Game.

That ""mature"" plot could've simply worked on a Lionsgate-like movie. 

Those efforts on turning things ""mature"" (e.g.: Hollywood mature) do nothing at all to make things work as a whole.

It seems AAA gamedevs cannot yet understand that you can go adult in a storytelling without dumbing everything down (save for The Witcher games, of course). And that a game is NOT a movie.



By ignoring the "story" however, everything else this game has can be better appreciated, which is pretty good material, by the way.

magusat999
magusat999

Can someone tell me what happened o the comment i posted??? It should be the newest. The game was really bad - I don't know how people could like it. The enemies were cheap and they were made to cheaply cancel your attempts to get high scores. The fighting flow is lost. There are monsters who can go right through anything you do, or hit you no matter what you try to avoid or stop - making the continuation of combos impossible. The stupid game will have you angel lift to a monster outside boundaries, and then you drop off - instead of letting you come bak to the ground. Its really dumb and unsatisfying. The guns have been nerfed to heck - all they are good for is stalling - you can barely scratch a minster with them. And finally, the monsters - even the slowest moving ones - "pop up" in position to hit you in a cheap spot. Say you run all the way across screen to a monster that is by himself and uppercut him, then start juggling him - EVERY TIME YOU DO THAT one of the other monsters will suddenly be right under you waiting for you to come down so they can hit you. It doesn't matter how slow the monster is - he will just "be there" to hit you as you come down. There is all kinds of cheapness like that in the game - not to mention the platforming sequences, which bring on an irritation of their own - just get ready to repeat some of those platforming segments over and over again - until you absolutely sick of it.

darshevo
darshevo

actually this is one of the best action games i have ever played and since i haven't play other dmc games i don't know why people are complaining about the new dante look i think his character is cool but the only bad thing about this game is boss battles as i enjoyed the other battles more than boss battles

baszzer
baszzer

The best example of a reboot.

zvirsky
zvirsky

Now playing this game and I must say that the humor is amazing and the music is also a cherry on top,dont know why people are bitching about this its awsome!

KarloCam
KarloCam

I like the direction they have gone with this. And finally some proper storytelling. Ninja Theory are the epic tits. 

gouki236
gouki236

if only they didn't call that Dante "dante" I would've been cool with it

TrickySky
TrickySky

DmC..had an annoying Dante with a good Vergil. DMC4 as a whole was more confident and funny.

I enjoyed the game but I do miss the Resident Evil, "Gothic architecture" of the series.

Capcom did very well with these crappy consoles. I just wish the pc version could look even better! Game is sorta hard to mod.. Wish Capcom would be nice like Bethseda's Skyrim and let the players mod their games easier :/  Even simple things like letting users replace music files or whatever.

mac-shild
mac-shild

Omg those geeks at ninja theory really know how put a smile on the Devils face by fucking up Devil May cry 5...worst game ever.! . kmt

this is what you get when you take a Japanese masterpiece and put it in the hands of Hollywood : they light it up like horishima

asifah30
asifah30

Attention:

======

I feel the game like:

A long cut scence ==> fantastic combo fight ==> Jump and Jump ==> a long cut scence ==> fantastic combo fight ==> Jump and then Jump ......going on the same and game gets finished.


The Darksiders 1( which is considered as a clone of DMC) is way better than DMC because it has the same combo system but so many environmental puzzles and thrilling boss fights.

The_Godfather_
The_Godfather_

DmC is a fair action game. but it fails to capture the series soul and turns Dante a lousy son of a b*tch..

im-a-roustabout
im-a-roustabout

I liked this better than dmc3 if only for the music...the third one kept playing the same song over and over and over ad nauseum.

54KKU
54KKU

Great job by Ninja Theory. Though DMC 3 is still the best, but this reboot has its some own point to be included in the club. Good story & gameplay, appealing level design, and moreover excellent control. 

But in case of Dante's arsenal  devs seems to have gotten inspired by Darksiders Series. nevertheless really impressive arsenal witch opened some very eye catchy combos.

But Seriously WTF is wrong with Virgil ...... that was a total ... 

radikel
radikel

Okay i wanted to reserve judgement on this till i played. Just finished the game.

Honestly!...as a stand alone game its pretty awesome, and iam sure it wud have gotten rave reviews, if it wasnt titled 'Devil May Cry'. A very tripped out game, trippy visuals for sure!!They even managed to expand on the already superb combat system of the original series!!!!

The issue is, Crapcom decided to reboot the franchise just 5 yrs after it was closed. They should have waited for a whole generation to just forget about the classics, becuz thats where the problem is, we are constantly thinking about the classics when viewing the reboot.

While the new game is good, unfortunately i still think the new characters cant even come close to comparing against the original cast....and GUD GAWD...wat happened to Vergil!!

So...original series still wayyy better...DMC3 greatest of all time!!!!

And i do take objection with a statement of Mark's "schlocky, B-movie tales of adolescent fantasy"... most game stories that way pander to adolescent fantasy,totally not right. I just think the storytelling method of the original series is a type of 'fill in the blanks urself...if in any doubt, it will be explained through sequels', kinda like wat Dark Souls is.

Bottomline....i still feel kinda sad with wats happened to DmC, no matter wat, its totally wrecked for me!!!Will still carry sweet memories of the Original series though :)

matthewmtg
matthewmtg

For the life of me I simply do not grasp how people can get into games like this.  Ultra-'arcadey', with animations so fast one can't even appreciate the 'moves', everything moving at 85 mph, button-mashing, etc.  

Ninja-Gaiden was/is guilty of this as well.  If they were to slow down the animations to the speed of "Assassins Creed', than that could significantly change the entire flavor of the game.  It would immediately feel more 'adult-like' and 'real' by simply slowing down the time-scale of such game.  

COD's are guilty of this as well.  Ridiculous.  Feels cheap, thin, and shallow.  No sense of weight in titles like these.

Same ol' ridiculous & arcadey 'swooshes' that occur upon swinging weapons, etc.  Blue 'swooshes', magic red-balls of goo, and other 'kiddy, teenie-boppish' arcade elements that game developers continue to inject into their games...

Mind Boggling that individuals actually enjoy this garbage.  


Played the DMC demo for 4.3 minutes and became 100% bored.  Kiddy, weightless, generic, and paper-thin.  


Adults play games too, devs.  Not just kids who are 'lured to colorful objects, weapon-swooshes & boss battles'.



amareen18
amareen18

Awesome game, Amazing story and level design!

Outatomomega
Outatomomega

I played all the DMC games, including this one and enjoyed it. It was definitely easier than the other ones but the style and combat remained true. Yes the story was bland, but so were the other games, but this stands out with better voice-acting. Every game has it's flaws, and this one is no different, but you shouldn't dismiss it because it doesn't look a certain way. Try the demo and if you're still not convinced then you don't have to buy it. Good review though. 

Kickable
Kickable

i never played the older ones but will now after playing this. almost done with it

kashirski
kashirski

Liked it a lot. DMC4 is far superior in all aspects, but still this is one solid slasher.

hellotony
hellotony

Just beat one boss, combat is great, nice graphics on my old PC but less red would be better, don't like the free-style camera for this series indeed. Will play more tonight.

elessarGObonzo
elessarGObonzo

new character appearance is pretty g ay. looks like some disney channel pop star. combat feels like every other 3rd person action hack n slash. if you got nothing else at the moment it's worth playing.

khokon_trance
khokon_trance

This is bullshit graphics....i don't like this..actual my fb game DMC4......Graphics is red red red...............bullshit....

travisstaggs
travisstaggs

This game is damn good. I don't think it's as good as DMC3, but it's damn near it.


black_meg
black_meg

I used to play only demo and i watched some DMC gameplays and i really liked it. Its graphics is very nice and fights are impressive. I waited with buying it until it's got cheaper. And finally! I just bought it. I'm sure i won't regret! 

sinatra666
sinatra666

PS :)

Like I said before, this game is very good. I only forget to mention about few things :) First of all  the great optimization of this game. It runs smoothly on my NOT FROM OUT OF SPACE PC. Storyline is very interesting, combat is great and character development is also cool. You can dole your skill points almost whenever you want and however you want and if you don't like it, you can always change it. Only thing that actually disturbs me, is a large part of soundtrack... I'm quite young but even that, I think I'm just unable to understand the phenomenon of dubstep or whatever Noisia is..

twistedman
twistedman

I've been playing Devil May Cry since the original DMC came out 12 years ago and without a doubt--this is by far my favorite entry in the series... I liked a lot the new character design, the story is great from start to finish and the combat is superb; it actually made me sweat and hurt my hands. Incredibly immersive if you ask me. I just finished it in one day--I literally couldn't stop, pretty addictive. Highly recommended.

TheKrustaceox
TheKrustaceox

@magusat999 It's not the game that sucks. YOU suck at the game. 

Keep crying essays of frustration while the game has an 8.0 user score. 

Was funny as hell reading this one xD


faceless-mask
faceless-mask

@mac-shild Please, please, PLEASE do some research, or at least read SOMETHING about the game before you make ignorant and moronic comments like this.
1. It's not Devil May Cry 5, it's just DmC. But call it what you will.
2. Ninja Theory is a UK based company you twit.
3. It is spelled Hiroshima. 

RyugGomba
RyugGomba

It's rather clear you have no taste in games. DmC is a dumbed down and story driven game that is prentiously bad. DMC has been an old school game and there is nothing wrong with that.

In fact, why would you slow down the speed of games like DMC and Ninja Gaiden when they perform optimally better than Assassin's Creed could ever dream? The control is much tighter, the combat is more fluid and skilled based and the A.I isn't filled with rocks like Assassin's Creed. Not to mention, Devil May Cry and Ninja Gaiden run at 60 FPS is a vast improvement over the 40 to 30 FPS, since FPS affect the intervals of input delay and how responsive control is. 

Don't you dare compared COD to DMC. DMC has had a light hearted story that's tongue in cheek and the reason why people love the previous games narrative was the over the top crazyness and mannerisms of the protagonist, Dante.

And if you think games like the old DMC's and Ninja Gaiden are "shallow" you have no clear idea what "depth" means. Play and game like God Hand and you'll understand. 

jngbb
jngbb

@heydarusa2 Good call on warning people about spoilers, by the way.

RAMENN00DLE5
RAMENN00DLE5

@heydarusa2 OMG OMG somehow you manage to pull off being the most annoying poster among this FUBAR ClusterEff and you even manage to convince me with certainty that you are even more annoying and  selfish in real life than the Ultra Combo levels displayed here. No one wants to know if Rocky wins or loses and I GUARANTEE you didn't spend a personal PENNY on any game in your lifetime. You suck at life.

faceless-mask
faceless-mask

@Outatomomega Yeah, the default difficulties are pretty easy, but then you get to Heaven or Hell and Hell and Hell modes, and it becomes waaay more difficult.

magusat999
magusat999

@faceless-mask @mac-shild  And that doesn't make a difference in what he is saying - no matter what he called he game or his spelling mistakes the game still sucks...

heydarusa2
heydarusa2

@RAMENN00DLE5  now i'm convinced that u don't know much about video games and u certainly aren't a real dmc fan. dmc5 sucks and all dmc real fans know it. i hope capcom realize this too and take dmc away from those idiots who fu**ed up a great title.

heydarusa2
heydarusa2

@pazshepard OMG you really don't know shit about video games, you are the kinda person who will fuck up any title they are given. i'm so glad u aren't a developer your self, thank god for that.

pazshepard
pazshepard

@heydarusa2 
@RAMENN00DLE5  I'm a real DMC fan and I liked it so, your argument is invalid. Also this DMC is way better than DMC 2, 3 and 4. So, you are the one who don't understand much about games I think... You should grow up as well, respect others and spoil a little less people's experience.

heydarusa2
heydarusa2

@Eraldus  oh yeah? ok, so go finish metal gear solid 4 in hours, your opinion is invalid and stupid as shit ;)

DmC: Devil May Cry More Info

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  • First Released
    • PC
    • PlayStation 3
    • Xbox 360
    DMC is the next installment in the gothic Devil May Cry series, featuring a short-coiffed, fully aggressive Dante.
    7.8
    Average User RatingOut of 2079 User Ratings
    Please Sign In to rate DmC: Devil May Cry
    Developed by:
    Ninja Theory
    Published by:
    Capcom
    Genres:
    Adventure, Action, 3D, Open-World
    Content is generally suitable for ages 17 and up. May contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language.
    Mature
    All Platforms
    Blood and Gore, Drug Reference, Intense Violence, Nudity, Sexual Content, Strong Language