Review by DJellybean
"Poor camera and lack of many options hurt this game."
This is pretty much one of the most hyped up games you'll ever encounter from Capcom. Though it's ''cool'' exterior might attract some, it later proves to be a huge disappointment.
The in game graphics are really one of the best that I've seen yet on the PS2. The characters are a little gritty, which seems to fit the mood of this game. The textures all seem very smooth with little clipping and graphical effects are pure eye candy, but with the poor camera the eye candy gets in your view often. Slowdown is virtually non-existant, but the camera needs serious work...which will be discussed in the gameplay section.
Load times are not really too barable, but at times when there is a timer to complete a certain mission, it hurts, and menus become a little tedious to scroll through when you're in a time limit and when you need to switch to another weapon.
This is one of the lackadasical departments in the game. The sound effects are very life-like and music(though not my preference)fits the game very well with it's heavy metal beats. Sometimes the voices can be hard to hear however, it becomes muffled during a lot of segments. You'd think that from the demo there would be some improvement...but it's clear that Capcom didn't bother.
Voice acting isn't all that bad however, but it's far from the best and is a long shot for winning any type of awards.
Replay is a very lacking department in DMC. Much like the Resident Evil predecessors, DMC's replay value simply consists of you playing the game over again with better weapons. The Secret Missions found within the game don't take more than 2-3 minutes each.
To unlock certain modes you must beat the game twice, and it gets harder as you go along. So not only is the game amazingly tedious, it's also amazingly fustrating...especially on Hard mode where you take twice as much damage against opponents 2x-4x harder than before. Hard mode also has outrageously high Red Orb prices to buy certain items as well, items that were so crucial to your first trip through the game are going to be extremely scarce due to the fact that they are so expensive.
It's laziness on Capcom's part. Playing the game over again is not exactly value.
This game could have easily been one of the funnest games to play, maybe even as good as Symphony of the Night. Yet the use of the analog and no option to use the directional pad really kills much of the feel for the game. The analog can sometimes(or most of the times) be too sensitive or stiff. The directional pad is never really used for the action, only for menu movement and the second to last mission(even that mission isn't much). The analog never stays put in one place, forcing Dante to move in another unforced direction.
The controls can be quite confusing as well. Moving into different camera angles can pose problems, but it isn't the case here...well, sorta. When you move down the screen and hold down(to move down), you would move up when the camera angle switches...even though you are still holding down. It's sorta like the mushroom over Ness' head in Earthbound, and you'll find yourself re-adjusting to the controls everytime you switch camera angles. Yet let go of down and hold down again, you'll be moving down instead of up. So as long as you keep moving, the controls shouldn't affect the movement much. However, in boss battles and such, this can be a serious problem and often leads to unforced errors.
The camera angles don't do the game much justice either. On what could have been a marvelous game turned into a director's nightmare. A lot of problems with the cameras is that it doesn't follow the character. It takes its own path and roams about...not even thinking of the barriers in front of it. So often at times an enemy can get in front of the camera and block of total view...this even happens with special effects. A huge explosion can be eye candy, but as soon as it gets in your way and allows unforced errors, it can become eye vegetables(okay...give me some slack for my jokes eh?). It focuses too far away from the player at times and it has some of the most awkward angles, especially in larger rooms where the perspective changes from close 3rd person to far away 3rd person...as if a bird was watching the scene. Sometimes objects get in the way of your view, and sometimes objects that are in front become clear so you can see the player. The problem with it becoming clear is that you often forget where the barrier is and you end up moving towards that wall thinking it was open space, but soon realize that it was the game's effect to compensate for the poor camera. This lack of inconsistentcy just makes things worst. Enemies are often out of view from the camera, so often you can take hits out of nowhere since the camera angle didn't catch it. Then again this is Capcom and they have had serious camera issues prior to this game anyways. The camera angles are very sloppy and inconsistent and really hurts the game's potential.
It's also hard to follow the story at times...especially when the sound comes out muffled. But in a game like this...story doesn't play too much of a significance. In fact, the story is utterly cheesy and full of clichés. It's uninspired and sounds like a story many teenagers can write without pain. It's the kind of story where you just want to skip and cover your ears when the characters speak. Then again we can't blame Capcom, story has long been a weak point in these types of games anyways...especially from Capcom.
However, the game is not all bad though. The game is what you can truly label ''cool.'' The main character, Dante, can do a series of different attacks. Triple slashes, flying attacks, launchers, and much more. Along with a giant blade he also has ammunition(which is unlimited, thank goodness) from several different firearms. Dante can launch the opponent in the air and juggle his opponent with a series of shots from his long range weapons. Along with that are triggers, which are located at the top left part of the screen under the health bar. In most cases Dante is in his human form...but by pressing the L1 button, Dante becomes his demon side and attacks the enemy with more powerful attacks. Yet this, unlike ammunition, is limited to a certain amount of time.
The game is also divided into missions. These missions are just different stages where you perform different tasks, but always involving a lot of action. As you destroy enemies you collect red orbs, which are used as a currency for purchase of attacks and other miscellaneous items the game has to offer. Green orbs restore life, blue orbs raises maximum vitality, and so on. You can also restore life, raise the maximum number of guages and buy yellow orbs for extra turns. The extra turns are just more of a given thing to take for granted than anything else. It'll let you continue on just where you last left off in the mission, but obviously it's limited. If you lose your yellow orbs you don't start over from the beginning of the game...you just pick off where you last saved your game...and you can save your game after every level.
You can revisit the places in previous missions as well, and luckily, load times are not a problem...so going from room to room isn't a waiting game. However, while the game is a lot of fun to play, collecting the red orbs becomes a chore(much like almost anything in any game). You would need to spend entirely too much time to powerup to acquire the items and attacks that you want.
Devil May Cry is probably worth the rent instead of the buy. It's a short game that can be beat in 3 days time(with 4 hours of play each day) and the conflicting problems the game poses will probably knock the game out of contention for game of the year.
If the camera was improved, that would be another score higher, if the option to use a directional pad was in, the score would be a point higher, and if the sound quality was a little more decent...then maybe another point. The game doesn't have many flaws, but has a few major ones. Don't count of flashy graphics and ''cool'' commercials to make you buy...otherwise you'd be mightily disappointed.
Reviewer's Rating: 3.0 - Fair
Originally Posted: 12/16/01, Updated 12/26/01
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