With the release of the recent DmC Devil May Cry (check out the review here), let’s take a look back at the original three Devil May Cry games.
The first Devil May Cry released on October 17, 2001. Originally intended to be a sequel in Capcom’s Resident Evil series, Devil May Cry was such a radical departure from the series’ style that it was developed into a new property entirely. Devil May Cry became the benchmark when it comes to mentioning combos in any hack and slash game. Devil May Cry was a decent game first in its genre and turned a couple of heads but not many.
Devil May Cry begins with Dante being attacked in his office by Trish. He brushes off her assault and she explains that the attack was simply a test to see if he really is the son of Sparda. The demon emperor Mundus is planning a return, and only a descendant of Sparda can defeat him. Without going into further detail as far as spoilers go, the story has its moments where you want to pay attention, especially since this isn’t the first as far as chronological order.
This is what it is all about. If you know anything about Devil May Cry then this is what you came for. The gameplay starts off on a decent pace, giving you some mediocre at best moments but this is just around the beginning. You start off with the Force Edge which is a memento of Dante’s father. It’s a basic but still cool looking two hander sword. You also start off with his trademark handguns Ebony and Ivory. You eventually get better weapons like the Alastor which is basically an electric version of the Force Edge and gives you the ability to double jump once later upgraded. The Ifrit are two flaming gauntlets which give Dante the ability to do flaming melee combat. As far as guns go, you eventually get your hands on a sawed off shotgun and a grenade launcher which can both be used to chain certain attacks together with sword melee. The Nightmare-Beta is a demonic formed weapon which shoots green lasers out which also can be charged and the Needle gun which is used for underwater gameplay. The Underwater gameplay although is the only part of the game I felt could have been left out.
On harder difficulties like “Dante Must Die” mode you will find yourself using every single weapon in Dante’s arsenal in order to overcome your obstacles. Recovery items such as the vital star, devil star, untouchable and holy water can be obtained throughout the game or purchased in between chapters along with upgrading your move-set which is necessary to beat certain parts of the game.
Graphically the game is pretty impressive for a 2001 game, basically meaning it came out early in the Playstation 2’s life cycle. The sound is nothing to ignore either. Devil May Cry has that heavy rock music which fits the game perfectly when Dante is hacking his way through demons. The HD enchantment compared to the PS2 version didn’t do a lot but that is usually the case when it comes to the first games in HD collections.
Being a Capcom game this is basically required especially back in this day. Bosses range from giant lava spider crab scorpions to huge demonic slug looking demons. They’ve got it all. And they’re far from being push overs. You’re going to have to find the right tools to take the enemies out along with the help or Dante’s demonic transformation devil trigger which changes his appearance, increases his damage and slowly recovers health.
Playing through Devil May Cry will leave you wanting more. You can tell Capcom was onto something when they first created this game and wasn’t planning on making this a one hit wonder. The game still left a lot of clues which could only be answered in future titles. Everything this game tried to do (except the underwater parts) they basically got it right. Also the inclusion of an alternate control scheme was needed and was available to anyone who felt weird using triangle to melee (like ME).
+ Gameplay, combos and cutscenes were interesting
+ Music fits the game perfectly and never felt out of place
+ Alternate control scheme
+ Moderately high Replay value (Extra things like secret missions and hidden Easter eggs)
- The combination of lock-on and camera angles can get annoying.
- Underwater stages felt out of place (controls were locked to inverted)
- Backtracking to continue the story could sometimes leave you lost and confused. The map didn’t really help either)
- Forcing you to use a Yellow Orb when you die didn’t seem reasonable
Devil May Cry 2 is a hack and slash beat ‘em up video game developed and published by Capcom in 2003 exclusively for the PlayStation 2. The game serves as a sequel to Devil May Cry but despite the success of the original Devil May Cry, the sequel was not created by Hideki Kamiya or Team Little Devils. The first notice Kamiya’s team was given about any sort of sequel occurred during localization of Devil May Cry in North America and Europe, a move which greatly surprised Kamiya. Since the game’s release, Kamiya has expressed disappointment that he was not called on by his superiors at Capcom to direct Devil May Cry 2.
Devil May Cry 2 begins with Lucia and Dante separately entering a museum where an important item called the Medaglia is stored. After defeating a group of demons in the museum, Lucia invites Dante to follow her to Dumary Island, where he is introduced to Matier, her mother. Chronologically, Devil May Cry 2 is the very last in the series.
Alright folks here is what I think about the gameplay in DMC2. In one word it’s…ASS. I should end it right there but you’re going to see how many things I found wrong with this game’s gameplay. Before I even mention the gameplay let’s talk about the fact that they don’t even let you change the way you play the game. I believe every single game should have full controller configuration that allows the user to change every single button to the way he/she wants to play. And at least in DMC they were nice enough to give you an alternate control scheme which is what I used, not this one though! So if you don’t like the way the controls are you’re going to have to get used to it.
Now on the actual gameplay, what the fuck went wrong? First off, this if this is supposed to be the latest Dante in the series, so why does he suck so bad? His attacks are way slower, his double jump has lag in between it, the stinger isn’t even the stinger we all know and love. It’s a whack ass jab and what happened to the move where you can stab the enemy in front of you about 12 times? I know this game wasn’t made by the exact same team as the first but why the hell would you change this much? How about the fact that when you get knocked down, Dante does this dumb animation to recover and get up which usually gets you knocked back on the floor. If there is one thing I liked about the game’s combat was the fact that you could kick during air combat after you pop an enemy up. Other than that, Dante’s whole move set it disgusting and I would rather use characters from Dynasty Warriors’ move set than this Dante.
Back in the day, DMC2 apparently came on two discs. The second disc lets you play as a different character named Lucia. Lucia is a mysterious demon hunter alongside Dante. Lucia is a member of the clan that has for ages been charged with protecting the faithful of Vie de Marli from all incarnations of evil. Her first weapons of choice are ornately crafted curved daggers for attacks of the up-close and personal nature. I actually prefer her move set over Dante’s which is sad. You can also play as Trish who is also preferable over Dante.
Graphically enhanced by the HD, this game doesn’t look too bad actually. This is probably the only thing I can commend this game on. It looks pretty good but that’s the only thing good you will probably find in this entire game which is pretty sad. Everyone knows graphics don’t make a game.
Bloody palace is a mode you unlock after playing the game with lets you fight waves of enemies each round. After you complete a wave you have an option of going up 1 floor, 50 floors, 100 floors ect. There are 9999 Floors and each floor that is a multiple of 10 has a boss battle. This mode isn’t anything special. Of course if you’re trying to get the platinum trophy or unlock all the achievements you’re going to have to get to floor 9001. On average, it could take you 4-8 hours to get there and there are no retries unless you bought a gold orb with you.
I heard Devil May Cry 2 was an utter disappointment in literally every single category it was in (except graphics). I didn’t think it was going to live up to the hype of how disappointing this game was but every single thing they did that made the first one good was totally flipped on you. It’s like they wanted you to hate the game or something. The majority of the game is straight forward, linear and short. Short was a good thing actually because as soon as I swung Dante’s sword for the first time in this game I wanted to turn it off, which is actually what I did. Dante’s personality is extremely boring and different. Over the years (at least chronologically) Dante became weaker and less interesting. I wouldn’t recommend this game to my worst enemy.
+ Graphically impressive for an HD make over
+ The game is short so you wouldn’t have to surfer for more than four hours
+ Lucia and Trish
+ Introduces lock-on target hub
- No alternate control scheme
- Slower gameplay
- Bloody Palace isn’t fun at all. It’s extremely repetitive and glitchy
- Glitchy menu system which continuously moves up (makes you even think your controller is broken)
- Only one gold orb can be held
- Less combos and weapons
- Disappointing final boss
- Camera angles fight against you at all times and the issue in terms of moving Dante in a different direction while changing the camera angle is still present.
- Lock-on system is completely broken. It felt like 9 times out of 10 pressing the switch lock on button (which is R2 not a good place to put it while you’re trying to shoot someone) doesn’t even work. It can sometimes lock on to someone halfway across the room while there are 5 enemies right in your face fucking you up
- The dumb wake up recovery animation that all characters do to get up off the floor. This only makes you get hit again while trying to get up thus causing you to be stuck in a loop with an enemy continuously hitting you while you’re trying to finish the animation to get up
- Any replay value just feels tacked on and a chore to play in the first place (Bloody Palace)
Devil May Cry 3: Dante’s Awakening, released in Japan as simply Devil May Cry 3 is a hack and slash beat ‘em up video game that was developed and published by Capcom and released in 2005 for the PlayStation 2. The game is a prequel to the original Devil May Cry reflected in the younger cast. Unlike Devil May Cry 2, DMC3 goes back to the formula of the first game, using the same engine but with highly modified and drastic gameplay improvements.
Since this is the special edition we are talking about there are actually two stories to play through. Dante’s story and Vergil’s stories Vergil’s must be unlocked. Set in modern times, the story centers on the dysfunctional relationship between Dante and his brother Vergil. The events of the game take place just as Dante has opened up the Devil May Cry agency (unnamed at this point in the story), and before Dante’s demonic heritage has reached its full potential. Vergil’s story shows his perspective of this story as well.
The gameplay in Devil May Cry 3 is what made Dante who he is today. Everything combo wise before DMC3 is child’s play compared to it. The chapters in Devil May Cry 3 consists of levels called “missions” in which players must fight numerous enemies, perform platforming tasks, and occasionally solve puzzles to progress through the story. The story is a step up, mixing three different genre’s in one game so you never feel like you’re doing the same thing. Kind of like the action adventure genre. Just like the previous games, Dante has a slew of weapons to choose from. You can bring two weapons into a mission you can switch between them with a simple press of a button. This opens up more combos that can be executed by Dante.
The list of weapons are:
Rebellion (Dante’s default Sword)
Cerberus (Tripartite nunchaku)
Agni & Rudra (Pair of talking and living Twin swords)
Nevan (Guitar-like Weapon)
Beowulf (Gauntlets and Greaves)
Ebony & Ivory (Signature Twin Pistols)
Artemis (Demonic gun which fires arrows imbued with demonic energy)
Spiral (Large Rifle)
Kalina Ann (Lady’s trademark rocket launcher)
The major difference from previous Devil May Cry titles is the combat system, which allows the player to choose one of Dante’s six different combat styles with different special techniques related to the style’s focus. The styles available are:
Trickster, for dodging and evasive maneuvers
Swordmaster, with extra abilities for swords and other melee weapons
Gunslinger, which has more techniques for firearms
Royal Guard, which allows the player to repel attacks with a properly-timed button press, and thereby charge energy for retaliation
Quicksilver, which slows down enemies while the character attacks at normal speed
Doppelgänger, which creates a shadow double that fights alongside Dante. A second player can also control the shadow double by pressing “Start” on a second controller.
Having so many different styles makes it feel like you’re using a whole new Dante every time you switch before a mission is started.
From the start, playing on any mode other than easy, the first couple of bosses are unforgiving. At this point in the game you don’t have that much health so taking a lot of hits isn’t wise. Nobody wants to get hit on purpose but it just happens and it’ll happen a lot. Just like any game, every boss has a pattern and it’s a pattern you better learn quickly because they will take chunks of your health off real fast. This game out of the three has the most content in every single area and this area isn’t any different. Capcom put work into this. You know Capcom puts work into one of their single player games when you have to fight all of the bosses over again around the end of the game (almost every Mega Man game). And don’t even get me started with Vergil. You have to dodge his parry about 2-3 times before you’re allowed to even touch him. Random stingers will kill you quickly as well. Fighting Vergil will teach you patience and discipline.
This is surprising but if there was anything that DMC2 has over DMC1 and DMC3 it’s graphics. Yes we went over how bad DMC2 was but we or at least I can’t deny that visually and graphically it did make the best HD improvement out of the three. The cutscenes in DMC3 were amazing but their resolution isn’t something to be proud of. Obviously the only reason DMC2 looked better is because it was made by a different team than 1 and 3 which is why gameplay wise that game is and will forever be ass. Sound on the other hand is the best in the trilogy. Dante sounds awesome; did I ever mention I love it when a character shouts out certain lines or their move while they are using it? EEEYA! HAHAHAHA! BREAKDOWN, BLAST OFF! That’s majority of what you’re going to be hearing coming out of Dante and I love it. It never gets old to me, and don’t even get me started on the music. It fits the game too perfectly you couldn’t ask for better music even at the menus.
Just like how DMC2 lived up to how bad it was, DMC3 lived up to how good it was. Going from 2 to 3 is like getting through those icky vegetables to get to the meat when you were a kid. You can tell that DMC3 was made to be successful and every single Dante fan boy has something to be proud of because it is indeed a masterpiece. I always heard how bad ass Dante was and honestly it wasn’t until DMC3 that I figured it out. I can honestly say I liked Dante more than I used to because honestly if it wasn’t for this character the personality for Masamune Date in Sengoku Basara wouldn’t exist, same goes for Mitsunari Ishida to Vergil. DMC3 has so much replay value and back in the PS2 days, I probably wouldn’t have been skilled enough to get that far in the game to see what this game truly was about. I have no regrets about not picking it up a generation later because I wouldn’t have appreciated it.
+ Full controller configuration (Unlike DMC1 which only had an alternate controller layout which I appreciated and unlike DMC2 which didn’t give you anything. Capcom knew that they didn’t want any complaining when it came to their layout. I said it too many times and I’ll say it again EVERY GAME NEED FULL CONTROLLER CONFIGURATION)
+ Combos, combos, combos. Enough said
+ Music, sound effects, voice acting
+ The story was interesting and surprisingly funny
+ Replay value is the best in the trilogy
+ Many weapons and fighting styles to choose from makes you feel like you’re using a whole new Dante every time
+ Camera is still not perfect but greatly improved to the point where you’re only complaining about it rarely
+ Although challenging, the special edition adding a difficulty that anyone can pick up and still have fun on was nice of them
- Switching styles in the menu, the game, or at least this PS3 version, will occasionally lock up and freeze. This has happened to me about five to six times. Once being outside of the menus. The chapters are quite long compared to DMC1’s chapters being 5-7 minutes and DMC2’s 3-6 minutes this game’s chapters are easily 17-23 minutes long which isn’t a con but having your game freeze at the end of a chapter is quite discouraging.
- Graphical improvement is the only thing lacking in this Masterpiece
I you like hack and slash games and have not played DMC yet, now is the time, this HD collection is all you need to get caught up with everything Dante related. Capcom even took the time to do what they usually do (which is have a voice say the name of the game at the main menu screen like Resident Evil, Mega Man X or Street Fighter) and at the main menu for the collection you will hear “Devil May Cry HD Collection”. Even though DMC2 was more than a hot mess (and I honestly think you should skip on it) it is still worth the purchase for DMC1 and especially DMC3.
+ A roller coaster of an experience
+ Great presentation
+ Replay value
- DMC2. I wouldn’t have held it against Capcom if they didn’t even include 2 in this HD collection. Honestly that’s what they should have done. I mean think about it, it wouldn’t have been the first time a company didn’t include a certain 2 with in their HD Collection. If you’re still confused by which HD collection I’m talking about, its Dragon Ball Z Budokai HD collection.