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Obviously the changes and cuts came when rhey felt pressure from fans to paste dante into the gameplay. Once he shows up the story freezes for a while into goofy filler with dante ( and his filler levels, another obv sign) taking out already defeated bosses while the saviour hangs around with a thumb up his ass, god damn the story was awful
Dante was going to be playable from the start. His levels were what was cut by Capcom pressure to release the game earlier. Notice how Dante has a truckload more variety and moves than Nero. Nero was clearly unfinished in comparison. Yamato was obviously going to be a full weapon before being cut.
Frank Zappa is God. Fact. King of Heroes, do you have enough swords?!