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Who is this Dante, huh? I'll pilfer his red coat and sell it on ebay. He'll probably cry, too...in slow motion.

This review is about three or so years after this game’s initial release. I’m writing about my opinion of this game more than its actual quality. I’ve owned this game on three separate occasions since 2002, and for the life of me, I cannot figure out what people see in it. I say this because this game does introduce a new formula for action games, yet it stands as a total work-in-progress all the same. The list of circumstantial evidence is there: imprecise directional controls for maneuvering the main character, Dante; the game-play hampering, yet cinematic camera angles; the clumsy inventory interface (for an action game that requires quick thinking and reflexes, it’s a chore to have to go in and out of the inventory screen to switch weapons); repeated encounters with boring enemies (besides the brilliantly conceived “Bloody Puppets” and “Fetish” creatures, the former are enemies you’ll engage the most throughout the game); and an incoherently distant storyline (it’s as if the game is too hip to reveal actual plot points, leaving me to guess what I’ve just been through five missions after)—it all conveys to me that Capcom made this game up as it went along. From my fuzzy knowledge, what eventually turned out to be Devil May Cry was actually one early version of Resident Evil 4—one that was eventually scrapped for some reason or other. I can see why they did scrap it, as the engine driving this game is much too fast-paced to be apart of Capcom’s established “survival horror” franchise; although, what turned out to be RE 4 isn’t all that better (I’m not that big a fan of RE 4’s “new” implements, either). It seems to me that many were caught up in what the game introduced than the game itself, but I won’t knock anyone for bothering to enjoy a game, even if it is over-hyped. I can take that Devil May Cry is a great game to many; but can anyone take my thinking it’s not all it’s cracked up to be? Now that I’ve given my take on the phenomenon of DMC, let me elaborate more my problems with this game. For starters, I felt no connection with Dante whatsoever, even with all the slow motion showing off his showboating, and the few quips he gives to imposing foes. He’s just a preening imbecile with super-powers, and he’s much too cavalier about the goings-on in this game. I did not care about his back story, nor did I ever care about why he needed to do what he does—this fact left the entire presentation seeming silly, and thus, the game became a waste of my time (however, on three different occasions I’ve bought this game after selling it, but nevertheless…). It wasn’t until I’d played Devil May Cry 3 that I realized the true potential in Dante’s character. His demeanor in that game makes a whole world of difference in my opinion of Dante in this first game: Dante’s flamboyantly capable of kicking butt, and mocking (or not even caring about) those whose butt he’s kicked. With that said, I’ll save the rest of my notices to Dante’s character for my review of DMC 3. Just know that, in this first game, Dante is like a brick wall bearing an eye-catching, painted mural: if he didn’t wear what he wears, he’d be just another lame video game action hero. Controlling Dante is sometimes a game in itself, due to the fact that the game seems more interested with presenting players with the presumed scope of it’s environments than presenting an action game that controls as well as it looks. Kooky camera angles shot through a fish-eye lens are strewn throughout the game, along with cameras drawn out too far. When a game is as fast-paced as DMC, you need a reliable camera that can keep its eye on the action. Unfortunately, as I’ve said, this game is more suited to feigning cinematic presentation, leaving the controls with an imprecision that requires much patience. This game can be very challenging, yet half the challenge comes from holding your bearings as the game switches cameras on you while you’re involved in heated battles—the other half of the challenge comes from enemies taking advantages of the foolish camera, tossing projectiles and what-not at Dante off-screen. To go with this, the game introduces tasks requiring precise jumps, yet the camera maintains the illusion of cinema, placing Dante in weird positions on the screen before he must make proper jumps. The jumping tasks aren’t too frequent, but the few that are there may test your patience—BE WARNED! I’m indifferent to most of the game’s sounds. I know Capcom is quite capable of putting together a great all-around soundtrack, yet this game’s sounds strike me as nothing special. The hard rock soundtrack is OK, yet it repeats throughout the game, while eerily ambient music full of spooky chants and mumblings heightens the tension of the final missions well enough. Sound effects are crisp and clear—I have no real problem with them, and the shrieks of the Sin Scissor creatures are very well done. The game has an excellent form of discipline-training by enforcing limits on your purchasing of helpful items. The game stresses engaging enemies so that you can acquire currency to buy useful items. Say, if you buy one item that refills your bar of energy for 350 red orbs (currency); you’ll then be charged 500 for the next and so on. This works for most of the more crucial items, yet obtaining these items is totally optional. That fact along with secret missions with special objectives that are available gives the game a bit of longevity, but only for those who can deal with the game’s deficiencies (which isn’t too hard). That’s my take on this game. It not a bad game at all; it’s just a bit underwhelming to me, and it always has been. I decided to give the game yet another shot after playing its excellent second sequel (DMC 3), and found myself liking the game a bit more than before. Still, this game has more than a few sloppy properties, but I can look past most of them now. Enjoy this flashy, challenging spectacle as you may. PS This game is obsessed with the color red and Dante reminds me of music artist Prince, for some reason, and he has some serious mental and sexual issues (well, that's a given, being that he's the son of a demon). Oh, and the character Trish sets female video game characters back five years with one statement at the end of this game--listen for it. That is all.

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