Capcom’s decision to reboot the Devil May Cry franchise and overhaul Dante’s look didn’t go down well with quite a few fans, but this seems like one reboot that doesn’t disappoint.
The demo contained two levels: one was basically a tutorial, and the other was a boss battle. The tutorial level started off in the real world, then transported Dante and his companion into limbo; it showed me the ropes, and since my only fling with this franchise was a brief play session in Devil May Cry 4, I needed it. The controls were easy to get the hang of and played similarly to the original series, but there was something distinctly new and different here. The standard guns, attack, pull, throw attack etc. were all there, as well as the angel and demon modifiers, giving you three times the controls and many more options. There wasn’t too much enemy variety, but there were a few different enemies that you had to use specific moves on to get me used to the controls. For example, any enemies holding shields have to be hit with a demon modifier attack to break the shield first. The level also had a few platforming elements, using the demon modifier pull onto exposed platforms, and using the angel modifier to pull yourself onto that platform. The platforming worked really well, and the fight scenes seemed like typical DMC flare with a bit of new Dante spice. There was a little nod when I activated a special mode which made Dante’s hair turn pale white and made his coat turn red like his predecessor. This mode slows time for the surrounding enemies, allowing you to put in a few quick hits.
The boss fight level definitely sold us on the gameplay mechanics. We had to fight a large, repulsive demon that looked like a large grub. After a cut scene filled with a bit of humorous banter between the two, the battle began. As this was a boss level, there was a huge health bar we had to try to eat into, all while avoiding the demon’s attacks. The worst of it was when she would puke on the platform we were on, and we had to use the angel modifier pull to grapple onto another platform before it started depleting my health. After a while, we took down a bar of health, and that gave us the opportunity to destroy one the tubes that was attached to her. Then we’d rinse and repeat until she died. It was a pretty simple formula, but played out really well as a boss battle and was no walk in the park. Timing attacks between hers, dodging, and grappling to avoid her puke was no easy thing, and we died a handful of times. Luckily, the checkpoint system wasn’t extremely punishing, but it took us a while to get through it.
All in all, Devil May Cry is shaping up to be a great action game, but whether this Dante will measure up to the original is all up to what the fans think.