It’s fair to say that when the lid was lifted on DmC the reaction by most people was not a positive one. Infact, you’ve just to take a look at any message board to see the vitriol spewing forth from fans of the series.
I’ll be the first to admit, when i first tried the demo of DmC at Eurogamer expo i walked away after seconds because i just couldn’t figure out what was in front of me. So when this landed for review i was entering with some trepidation and a bit of a idea in my head already how i was going to score this.
Then i played it. Lots. Then lots more.
Then it hit me like Dante hitting an opponent with Rebellion. This game was actually better than i had already judged it to be in my mind (isn’t it great when that happens!).
If you’ve played any previous games by Ninja Theory you’ll know that they are heavily stylised story lead games (with great gameplay thrown in too), from the off you can tell that they’ve got their stamp all over this just by the way the game is presented. However, at it’s heart this is still Devil May Cry.
It’s very much a “modern” take on Devil May Cry with the series Gothic roots ripped up in favour of a modern urban setting. Im not going to come out and say this was the best decision, but the change is good, however the Gothic style made the previous games stand out more and gave them a style of their own. The game is quite visually stunning (there is some poor texture work, but that’s Unreal Engine 3 for you, i’d like to imagine that it won’t be as bad in the PC Version) and has a pleasing art style that fits the theme perfectly.
The main crux of the game is the combat, and if you’ve played any Devil May Cry game you know what to expect. Combos are the order of the day but thankfully for those of us not gifted with 3 million fingers and a brilliant memory, the combos have been made easier to pick up (but there are still some difficult combos for you masters out there). The combat feels the same as in the old games, so while the rest of the game has had an overhaul, the combat is pretty similar to how it was in Devil May Cry.
The platforming elements of the game are much better done than in previous games and it’s no longer a chore getting from battle to battle. It feels like this is the main element of the game that Ninja Theory have concentrated on (aside from the story) in order to put their own stamp on things and it makes the game feel so much better for it.
Im going to refrain from mentioning the story simply to avoid spoilers, however there are 20 main missions for you to slice and dice through and the game has a fair length on normal difficulty (of course, your mileage may vary on that one). However, if you’re worried about New Dante, don’t be, they’ve done a good job at keeping him true to the spirit of “old” Dante yet putting their own touch on him (quite frankly, he’s a bit of a cock at the start).
Ninja Theory have done a brilliant job of taking Devil May Cry, keeping it faithful to the series yet putting their own touch on it and (in my opinion) making a better game for it. It’s still Devil May Cry, but different. Hopefully Ninja Theory will want to take another stab at the DmC universe.