Get Your Game On: REVIEW #1: DmC: Devil May Cry
Sometime ago, back when I was a wee little man with a mighty big afro, I picked up my very first video game controller. After that initial contact, I became hooked. It has since then become a personal mission of mine to find the best of the best and the worst of the rest when it comes to video games. Whether it is the horrid nature of Mary Kate and Ashley’s Magical Mystery Mall to the wonder that is Final Fantasy X all the way to the ball’s out, fast paced nature of Melty Blood; I have decided to help you learn what the good, the bad and the utterly batshit look like. It’s time to GET YOUR GAME ON.
Get Your Game On:
REVIEW #1: DmC: Devil May Cry
By: Avery Krushall
For the purposes of this particular series, we will adopt a grading scale worthy of the hack-n-slash goodness that is DmC. So, for your viewing pleasure:
Dirty- You are probably better off watching paint dry if I score something this way. Avoid it and, if you own it, claw out your own eyes as penance. Sheesh. Ex. Bomberman: Act Zero (X-Box 360)
Cruel- It is better than being dirty, and may have some entertainment value, but all in all, it still isn’t a very good game. Ex. Rising Zan: Samurai Gunman (PS)
Brutal- You’re run of the mil good time. Nothing spectacular about it but you won’t want to light yourself on fire while playing it either. Ex. Megaman Battle Network (GBA)
Anarchic- Now things are getting fun. Everything about the game is coming together: controls, sound, graphics, artwork and story but it is still missing that one thing that is going to push it over the edge. ex. Dead Island (PS3)
Stylish!- If I rank a game as stylish, go buy it, make sweet sweet love to it and keep it so that your children may, one day, enjoy it as well. It is the perfect game worthy of a 5 out of 5. ex. Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core (PSP)
Now that all of that is out of the way, let’s get to the game.
The Story- Hell meets Heaven in One Bloody Good Time
If you have never played a game in the Devil May Cry series, you wouldn’t know that this game is actually a reboot of the series. Prefaced by four previous games, DmC: Devil May Cry tells the story of Dante, a young twenty something with a chip the size of Texas on his shoulder, who has a habit of getting drug into a twisted version of our reality called Limbo where all the things your mom warned you about exist. When the game begins, Dante is just coming off of a bender that took him all across his quaint little town with two girls dressed like naughty angels, who, apparently from the deep scarring scratches on Dante’s back, like to play rough. Dante heals the wounds through a form of magic and is awakened by a sleazy Fox News like report about a terrorist organization that has been rampaging across the city.
It doesn’t take long however for Dante’s day to go from hangover to hell under. If you know anything about Dante, you know that Dante has a penchant of attracting the nastiest of customers, who, by no fault of his, trash his home. And that is exactly what happens as Dante meets Kat, a beautiful psychic girl who warns him about a demon called the Hunter that is chasing him. No sooner do the words leave her mouth that you get to take your first trip into Limbo. From there, the story takes a dose of bath salts and sends you on one wild ride of Shakespearean proportions that has Dante discover his mixed heritage as a Nephilim- a child of an Angel and Demon. His dad was the demonic general, Sparta, who fought to stop the demons from attempting to slaughter human kind as we know it. This is very similar to the previous games but, in earlier installments, Dante was the child of a human woman and Sparta but hey, I wasn’t complaining. Because of that, you also get to meet some of the baddest dudes on the planet including Mundus (the main antagonist of the very first game in the original Devil May Cry series) and, my personal favorite character, Virgil, Dante’s older twin brother who is leading the charge as the leader of the terrorist organization that the news broadcast was bashing.
I don’t want to spoil too much about the story but I will tell you that it is on crack. Fighting living television broadcasts, a play out of the Futurama playbook with a vile creatures bile being used as a carbonated beverage and gigantic fetus monsters that rip their way out of a Joan Rivers look alike is what you are in store for. You are also in store for a great story with some amazing action and a reason behind everything, including the weapons and power ups you receive. All of it has its place in the story, especially the Devil Trigger, the tool used to activate Dante’s demon blood, which is absolutely necessary to defeat the final boss.
Furthermore, for you literature types like me, if you pay attention you will notice that his story is inspired by a very famous comedy that is simply divine. Get it?
If you were expecting something special from DmC: Devil May Cry in terms of gameplay, you probably will either be really happy or really let down. This game follows in the foot steps of its predecessors and is a hack-n-slash for your life type of game. Your main mode of combat will follow the same pattern: melee combat. Is that a bad thing? In the words of Dante, “Hell no.”
The hack-n-slash nature of Devil May Cry is one of the main reasons to play it. Combat revolves around a set of weapons: the big fucking sword (Rebellion), the big fucking axe (Arbiter), the angelic scythe (Osiris), the tribute to street fighter gauntlets (Eryx) and the yo-yos of death (Aquilla). The cool thing here though is how you decide to use these weapons. Weapons can be switched on the fly using different button combinations and the more combinations you use and the more you hit and juggle your opponents, the more style points you get. And trust me, you want a lot of style points. Style points allow you to power up your weapons so that you can get new techniques and the like. On top of your melee weapons, there is some long range combat, courtesy of your hand guns, Ebony and Ivory, your sawed off shotgun and a weird, sci fi needle gun called Kablooey that causes demons to explode after your detonate them. However, the most of your fun will come from combo’ing your enemies into a fine paste into the air where you proceed to juggle them for over one hundred plus hits. Believe me, it is enjoyable.
Outside of your combat, the game plays as your typical action adventure game. You navigate the cracked out world of Limbo and use your skills and items to get you through the stages while fighting waves of seemingly, at times, endless enemies.
A downside to this is that some of the stages, by virtue of their crack out-ness will make you want to stab your own eyes out with how beautiful, and how frustrating they are. One moment a platform will only be a step away and the next you are tumbling through the air to your untimely death. Luckily enough, DmC is pretty forgiving and will put you right back to where you came from. Unless you run out of life, in which case, a full stock of Yellow Orbs will become your best friends.
Boss battles is where this game shines. Remember when I said that all weapons in this game have a point? Unlike Megaman, where you use the boss’ weakness to defeat them, in this game, you have to use all the weapons you can to defeat the boss. Exposing a boss’ weak spot is also important as it often leads to a gory cut scene and a measure of their health bar going down. And when you kill an enemy…oh boy, you are in for a show. Dante has always, and will always, be a show-off. And goodness does he put on a show.
Plain and simple, DmC is beautiful looking. Love it or hate it, you can’t deny the look of Dante, Virgil, the demons of Limbo and even Mundus are right on point. And can I mention Limbo again? That place would give MC Escher a fever dream.
Devil May Cry has always been noted for its amazing use of metal scores and DmC: Devil May Cry doesn’t disappoint. Adding in some house and bits of hip hop and you have a soundtrack that will make you want to fight more Stygians and Witch’s than you can shake a stick at. Naw, scratch that, throw an Arbiter at them instead. You’ll thank me later.
Overall, DmC: Devil May Cry is a near perfect game. It allows the player to do what they want, when they want and always makes sure that they are having fun while they are doing it. No matter if you are a fan of the originals or a newbie to the series, the easy pick up and play nature of the game, the engrossing story and the rocking musical score to accompany the copious amounts of blood being spilled make for a good investment. I give this game a rocking, and honest…