Backseat Reviews: DmC (2013)

And two isn't enough either.

And two isn’t enough either.

…Ya know, I would like to review good games again. Then someone had to show me the walkthrough on YouTube, days before release no less. How? My guess is that one reviewer got their copy before release and decided to put up the gameplay. And while my original plan was to just rent a copy of DmC as a surprise review, I can’t for two reasons.

1. This game is so bad, it leaves a bitter taste in my mouth that is only growing stronger as I type, and headaches that make me feel like the Hulk is giving me a head pat of hell.

2. I am broke. Economy sucks, no job, and I am in college, what can ya do aside from trying?

Now before I go on, I should warn all of you of the content in this article. There is going to be a lot of nitpicking mostly at the story, and comparisons of gameplay from this game and to other DMC titles, and even Bayonetta to an extent. However, I watched this all from a walkthrough, devoting about 7-8 hours of my time to look at all 20 videos before making this article, so the focus is mostly going to be on story here. If you’re the type of player that prefers gameplay over story, and don’t want to be spoiled as I will be going into a lot of detail, stop reading now. You can also just watch the walkthrough in this link too. Special thanks goes to SplitRyona for saving me from spending money to rent this trash.

Not to mention, this is easily one of the largest, if not the largest, article I have ever written before. There are also going to be major spoilers too, so it’s best to just skip to the end if you want to avoid that.

Now some common hack and slash fans are thinking and saying: “But DMC has always been about the action! Nobody cares about the story!”

That is your opinion, and you’re free to be entitled to that. I even wrote an article I consider gameplay to be the most important aspect of a game, because if it’s broken, I’m just going to YouTube the story if it is good, unless I have to review it of course. Moreover, Ninja Theory and Capcom really tried to push their story out more with the trailers, and looking it over is probably an insult to the developers and not fair, even more than just saying it sucks. Moreover, I explained before that a story, no matter how crappy or cheesy it is, forms the character you like. For example, the Luminous Arc games. The stories aren’t masterpieces, and can even be cliches or ideas taken from other games, more on the first game rather than the second, but the cast was pretty good and got my interest. So to deny this, you might as well not even do a review on the game at all, or try to defend it. It’s just like in real life: you want to know everything about all sides before picking one so you don’t end up doing something incredibly stupid. Speaking as someone who has done that a lot, it should mean a lot.

And they tried to make a more realistic and modern DMC game, or Western, or whatever people like to use as an excuse. I wouldn’t mind this. Heck, they do use modern things like companies, politics, and other forms of media like Twitter for this, though to little effect, and really, mostly news and soda are used to the most effect. The new Mortal Kombat episode introductions to the characters you can find on the Mortal Kombat wikia? I thought those were well done, and even that Scorpion trailer was awesome. The point of it was to make it more modern and get away from the games, and I say they succeeded. This reboot on the other hand? It falls flat, limbo has opened the floor open, and now it spirals into an endless hell.

Let's get this over with already. :/

Let’s get this over with already. :/

Before we dive into the wretched, let’s at least look at the good points of this game. And by good points, I only mean the gameplay and the environments. Now, I actually think they look interesting, particularly with limbo and how it affects gameplay. Now don’t expect it to be too involved during combat, as limbo is used more for running levels where limbo actively tries to kill you by using the environment, be it to cut off paths or squash you. I actually found these to be a nice change of pace from having to fight room after room of demons. For those hated platforming in the original games, I will say it definitely looks better than in those games. Ninja Theory definitely made a great job of making it pretty. The environments though aren’t that interesting, and it can be annoying to see the words pop up on limbo, but more on that later. It looks fun to see at least, but the levels become less and less imaginative. Still, better than levels where camera control is crap and I keep getting thrown into saws.

And there's no real penalty for failing either. Good for newbies, but also loses tension.

And there’s no real penalty for failing either. Good for newbies, but also loses tension.

As for the gameplay, I mentioned I did not like the demo at all. It lacked features I’ll discuss later, but if nothing else, it looks easy to get into, in switching weapons and such. You have a large variety of devil and angel arms, more than enough to tear into your foes with great combos. Admittedly, most combos are air juggles, but hey, those tend to still be fun after all. Some of the weapons, while not as good as the original DMC, are interesting, and I only say that to comparisons to others. The angel shuriken is perhaps my favorite weapon to see in the game, if only because I have a soft spot for those weapons. Moreover, the gameplay is suited to those new to DmC. The most important part of a game is fun, and this is a good to hook on newcomers who never played any DMC game in their life. I’m not gonna deny that.

Okay, that’s enough of them positives, few of them as there were. I do have problems with the gameplay. First and foremost, there is no taunt button. According to information I have found from players, the one thing every DMC game had, as far back as I can remember, was the taunt button. At first, it seems useless, but in all honesty, it was one of the most satisfying things about DMC. Not only did it increase the style level, and give a degree of satisfaction when you used it and pulled it off, but it also increased the Devil Trigger meter. Not only, that it helped fuel the character’s confidence and add to their personality, even if only by a bit. Even Vergil had a taunt, and he seems like the last kind of person to do so. Now some said this wouldn’t fit the narrative of the game. I however call bullcrap considering how much the characters are willing to curse each other out and use so many one-liners. In some of the DMC games, it also didn’t seem to fit you can argue because of some serious points, mainly Nero, but even so, like I said before, it gave that certain sense of satisfaction, that extra edge in combat. One dodge button I do agree with, even though the jump in the last game helped serve as the roll when using the lock-on button, but why do you need two?

Second, the game looks  too toned down. The Vergil and Mundus boss fights in particular are perhaps the worst offenders of them all. You can argue for the others, as it does give some unique and ugly creatures, if a bit boring at times since I didn’t like those same boss fights, but not for Vergil and Mundus. Look at the those boss fights on DMC1 and DMC3. Every fan of those games remembers them to be brutally hard, I know I do at least. The bosses here? They don’t display the same amount of tension or difficulty here. The walkthrough I have seen seems to put them on the level of normal difficulty, and there was little effort put in to defeat them. Not only that, their attacks were painfully predictable. This is the thing about DMC: while it is known for bashing buttons to pull of crazy combos, you always had to be aware of your environment, dodge and dance around enemy attacks, hit them quick and fast. However, damage taken is actually pretty low, enemy attacks are kind of predictable for the most part, and the game itself also limits that combo availability. Nearly every combo video I saw is basically hitting the enemy in the air and stay up there. Not so with other DMC games like I said before. Thus, the need for challenge is taken away.

Back then, there were also stronger enemies, enemies you HATED to see, yet gained satisfaction in defeating. One of them was the infamous Shadow, a large cat made of shadow energy. It could only be hurt by guns, and it was the better strategy as if you ended up too close, you would get hit with an instant kill move. Another example is the Blitz, a large lightning demon that could only be damaged by guns until you wore it down, so you had to beat it quick, and it was hard to aim because it kept teleporting, and you only had a small window of time to try and dodge. Or how about those blood bats you had to use guns first before killing them because if you didn’t, they would multiply! True, there are some cool hard enemies, but I never got that sense that they were the worst of the worst because of how easy the gameplay was. Whether you cared about the story not, this was the main draw of the game. Now DmC actually improved on the platforming, making it MUCH more forgiving, and I do like the idea of swinging from platform to platform.

I fought this thing so many times, I shudder when I see it, and grin when I beat it.

I fought this thing so many times, I shudder when I see it, and grin when I beat it.

But everything else? I just don’t see the challenge of it. Sure, there are enemies that can only take specific hits from certain weapons, but that makes even less since. How so? Well, demons can only take damage from specific weapons. Some are vulnerable to only angel or demon weapons, and when you think about it, why is that? These are simple minions, and some are just palette swaps of other demons already in the game. Not only does it not make sense, it’s pretty lazy overall. Add all of this in with disappointing boss fights, some of which don’t even make sense, and my ability not to care at all for the main character, you have a game that absolutely fails to appeal to me.

And the so-called Easter eggs for old DMC fans is insulting to me. There’s the infamous wig scene, in which Donte gets a wig on his head, making him resemble the old Dante a bit, and then tearing it off saying “Not in a million years.” Basically, this is the middle finger of Ninja Theory, saying “Hahahaha, you are never getting the old Dante, ours is better!” But when you really think about this scene, what is the point? Donte here eventually gets white hair not only from the Devil Trigger, but unless my eyesight sucks with glasses now, also at the end of the game, where his hair grows lighter. So you want to insult yourselves? You technically put white hair on your character too, so why insult the fans? Why poke the already hungry lions!? Oh, and it gets better. Notice the achievements for this game? They are all quotes from the original series. Ya know, for a game that wants to be as far away from the original as possible, it sure rips seems the need to borrow from its older brother.

Then there are scenes that make no sense, with dialogue a bit jumbled, or things not being fully explained. Now, there are things you can get away with, like Dante’s abilities at times since, well, he’s a half-demon and half-angel hybrid, but then there are things like Limbo, though we will focus on one earlier scene: the one where Kat throws a Molotov cocktail at a Hunter and that somehow weakens it. Was it a spell inside? Was the Hunter demon weak against fire? Never explained. Moreover, based on dialogue before, it sounded like Hunter demons were dangerous, but also common enough to be more than one in the entire world. Sadly, we only see that demon once.

Moreover, the plot itself is confusing with its theme, as Adam Sessler pointed out in his review of DmC, in that it first starts out trying to have that playful attitude reminiscent of the old Dante, and then switch gears to have the story in a more serious tone, albeit with very poor dialogue and jokes, but serious nonetheless. And there are a few holes in this, as well as character stupidity above that! Moreover, Sparda. His story still sounded more interesting than the main plot, and yet somehow, when he is still alive in this universe (he was dead and possibly that devil arm in DMC), his sons do nothing about it! Um, guys, maybe freeing your father would also help in stopping Mundus? They never give a clear explanation as to why they don’t do this, aside from Vergil’s motives that are seen in the last chapter. And to nitpickers, they also mispronounce the names of a few things, like Yamato. Ya know, Vergil’s katana? The same one from DMC4? The same one that was a plot point? The same one that was said A LOT? I know it’s minor to get angry at this, but when the games are available to view at any time, even in YouTube, you have no excuse at all!

Since I discussed the angel thing, it’s only fair that I bring it back up.

Ha! You wish.

Ha! You wish.

Now my original fear was that it was either going to be glanced over, or the game would be stupid enough to make angels sluts for Donte. Only the former was included, or excluded in this case. No other angels are present, but they clearly exist based on flashbacks. Now because of Sparda’s plan of separating his sons and making sure they had no memories to avoid doing something stupid like try to avenge their parents at such a young age, that’s most likely the reason Donte hasn’t seen many angels, even when they were apparently present at the time of his mother’s death. So making Donte half-angel hurts the game if we never even see angels in the first place. With all of this of Mundus controlling the world through debt, you could have the angels be political figures or other businessmen or SOMETHING to fit into this world to counter Mundus and not cause a crisis. Yes, that sounds kinda stupid as well, but they are trying to do this in a modern view and not even taking advantage of it!

More importantly, there’s the Nephilim. First, they failed their research, so now it’s education time! According to information I have obtained from my friends, who are smarter than me by the way, I was able to get a few definitions of Nephilim, that they are apparently half-angel and half-human, giants who ate people. The biblical definition is a bit more complicated, so we’ll avoid that, but it’s basically the same idea. They would be a lot stronger, yes, strong enough for God to release a flood to kill them all off. So, Ninja Theory really screwed themselves over with this. There should be a definition of angel and demon offspring, but it ISN’T NEPHILIM! At first, I let this go, but after the next topic after this, I couldn’t and had to make sure. Against the uneducated, things like this fly over their heads, which is why I am not letting this go. This is information others found for me on common sites. As writers, research is your job to be creative. You have no excuse, Ninja Theory. Unless you played too much Diablo III, which has the same definition  of Nephilim you do.

….Okay, scratch that, EVERYONE needs to do research.

And the major problem of it all before we get into the next topic is that the power boost from being a Nephilim isn’t all that special. I have played the previous DMC games, and Donte and Vergil here don’t seem that much more powerful than their previous incarnations. The same goes for Mundus, as while he is very powerful, apparently the brothers defeated him in a rather disappointing boss fight; more on that later. In the first game, it took a weapon of great power, Dante, and Trish to take down Mundus, and even then, all it did was seal him up. In the DMC series, Mundus is still alive and well. There’s just not enough power to these guys, especially when there is nothing that really makes them ascend up to Mundus’ level of power without some kind of powerful weapon or force. Making them half-angel was not only confusing and a waste, but an even bigger waste if they aren’t even going to take advantage of it, thinking only of angelic weapons, which while cool, serve no real purpose aside from puzzles and certain enemies.

Speaking of the next topic, let’s hit a certain infamous boss, least to me. The Succubus demon is perhaps a good example of poor storytelling and research, along with horrible dialogue. If you don’t know who the demon is, here’s a picture:

No. In fact, I think I just swore of porn forever. Again.

No. In fact, I think I just swore of porn forever. Again.

Yes, that is the succubus, the same demon the net has named: Secret Ingredient. Now before you rage at looks alone, my Plurk friends were smart enough to inform me of a succubus. You see, apparently succubi like Morrigan Aensland are more of the modern version of the demon, using sex appeal and such to get the attention and desire of men, and gain what they want, be it souls, life-force, etc. And sometimes, the guise of seduction is just that, and the real beast underneath the hot bod is far scarier and stronger than one might think. So despite looks, so long as it follows the traits of a succubus by using sex and taking their souls, or even attack during dreams, looks do not matter at all.

Unfortunately, Ninja Theory missed both the modern and past ways of a succubus! Odds are by now, you have seen the infamous cut-scene between SI and Donte here. Thankfully, there is no sex-scene of these two, though I bet some fanfic writer is getting on that. However, that makes it all the more confusing as to why this is called a succubus. All it does, aside from fight, is use the liquid inside of its body to make a soft drink that can kill or make humans docile, that’s it. How does that take souls? I don’t even remember hearing the word soul mentioned. And the dialogue…do I even need to mention it? I argued on this point in an article a while ago, so we’ll discuss that later. Point is, this was actually a chance to do something interesting and possibly unique, and it is WASTED.

In fact, a lot of potential in this game is thrown into the limbo of this game. Limbo for instance is a confusing mess. We can assume limbo is its own character, as it frequently displays words and taunts Dante, and evenly actively tries to kill him. However, if we are to assume that limbo can do all of this, try to crush him and even take away the ground he can use to reach places, why doesn’t it do that all the time, or even take the ground out from Donte’s feet? Is this ever explained in detail? Nope, and odds are it never will be as limbo seemed to be the dimension blocking all demon activity, allowing Mundus to get away with what he does, and now it has fused with the human world at the end of the game, or it just vanished. Wasn’t really clear.

Yeah, this totally fits DmC right? Digital floating heads are cool, right?

Yeah, this totally fits DmC right? Digital floating heads are cool, right?

Then there’s the presence of Bob Barbas, a demon under the employ of Mundus. Now, I’ll ignore the whole boss fight with him being some virtual magic giant head, which makes no sense, and it is inventive by having Dante slay demons, yet show them as women and children, to the world’s audience and not to the player at least mind you, to help build a horrible reputation for him. Too bad THAT is never used in the entire game at all, so it was, say it with me class: POINTLESS. No, the other issue is that he gives an angelic weapon upon defeat. One of the main concepts of DMC was that souls of demons were what created Devil Arms. It didn’t happen all the time mind you, but they never just suddenly said “here’s an angel weapon now created from a demon soul.” That is confusing, as it is stated in the game that Barbas is a demon! More clarification would be nice, game.

Now do you remember that girl in the cut-scene where she was being railed from behind by Mundus? If I told you that was Trish, what would you do? Well…it is Trish–You can put down that sword, I was just kidding, seriously!

Yeah, Trish isn’t even in this game, which is a blessing, so Ninja Theory can’t screw that up. In all seriousness though, Lilith isn’t really all that important. Yeah, calling Eva a whore is what everyone does, but the real thing to her, aside from just being the whore demon and the monster that SHOULD be the succubus considering how many times she wants Mundus to open and ram her gates (I am sorry for that sex joke, you can slap me later), is the baby inside of her. That’s right, Mundus’ kid is inside her. That isn’t the weird part though. She has the kid fight Donte. But that’s not the weird part. Ya wanna know what it is? THIS:

…What is even the hell? Okay, by this point in the walkthrough, I was already broken to the point of not caring. But after a few days, I can finally ask a logical question: if the demon can accelerate its growth to put minor demons to shame, AND fight Donte at the same time, why is it still a fetus? Wouldn’t it have already have enough power to come out of the womb? Hell, it fights Lilith to get out! Moreover, if Lilith is strong enough to take swords to her body and a butt kicking, why doesn’t she fight back? In fact, how does she die from a shot to the stomach by Vergil? What sense does this all make!? And ya wanna know the sad part of it all? I have seen reviewers calling this game mature and subtle. This is about as subtle as me trying to gain an interview from the President of the United States, hiding a bunch of press in the buses as the cameras stick out, a terrorist is smoking in the corner, and my pants are off! Did that even make sense? No? Then now you know how I feel. Aside from that, her purpose is limited. It’s not like they try to make her sympathetic either, which would have been a cool twist, having Lilith see Dante and his power, and actually beg for protection, showing a nicer side to a demon and thus making it all the more tragic when she is shot by Vergil with a sniper rifle. More on that later.

And Mundus is perhaps one of the biggest flops. Now he wants to control the world through debt, and for the most part, he has succeeded, having the President of the United States himself wrapped around his finger. Yet with all this power, he cannot possibly find one single guy? Donte isn’t that hard to find. He certainly didn’t keep a low profile. Now we all know the Sparda brothers can survive things like a stab in the chest, but they aren’t immortal and can be killed given enough damage to their bodies, so an assault team made of soldiers or using spies from both the demon world and the human world should be able to find Donte easily, especially using limbo, where humans cannot see them. I’m just saying, if you have enough power to make the President of the United States wrapped around your finger, and enough to cause the collapse of the world economy through debt enough to cause chaos to ruin it all, USE IT! At best, he uses the squad to assault the base Vergil is in and get back his mistress, and even then, it is used to very poor effect. I can think of many uses during that trade Kat and Lilith. Have soldiers surround the brothers, or have some traps put in ahead of time, like a hidden bomb on Kat to prevent a deal from going wrong, or just to really hurt the brothers.

If Mundus is smart enough to do his world conquering plan with little to no resistance, he should really be a smart and capable demon Instead, when you really think about it, he’s even worse than the old DMC version. The old version was strong enough to not be done in by Dante and the ultimate weapon, Sparda, and when he was defeated, he was just sealed away, not killed, unlike in this game. Old Mundus is laughing at this new Mundus, as Bender. BENDER LAUGHING! I can’t help but be reminded of those aliens from Battlefield Earth. But let’s be more real here: the theme is debt, right? Is this ever used at all? The answer is no. Ya know, we could have had more interesting development scenes and levels with people making deals with the demons, indebted to them to do their bidding. Or how about weak-willed angels or fallen angels, beings who have nothing left and devote themselves to Mundus, being in his debt. This is never really touched upon like it could have been! Imagine the possibilities this could unfold like with everything else. And instead, it’s all a waste. If I want social commentary, I’ll just look at the news. Stop trying to insert it if you have no idea what to do with it! I just listed a better way to do some parts of this game, and I am the last person you want to write a story, right next to “insert Twilight joke here.” What’s next? You take away fighting a bunch of demons as the credits roll and instead replace it with footage of DmC being made by Ninja Theory and their offices? Spoilers: that happens.

In this review, I am god. You Mundus? You're a poorly done character.

In this review, I am god. You Mundus? You’re a poorly done character.

And then we finally hit the final nail on the coffin: Don–You know what, screw it. These two do not even deserve the names Donte or whatever name they made up for Vergil. I hereby dub you two, Dante as Headbanger Tom, and Vergil as Carebear Craig.

First, let’s start with the man that actually made me cry when I saw his trailer: Carebear Craig (Vergil). Now, Vergil hasn’t been in all of the games, but in DMC, you knew things were serious when he was involved. While it hasn’t been fully confirmed, it is possible that he was linked to Nero through his devil arm, and Vergil desired power above all else. Was it to rule the world? Nope. On the contrary, Vergil seemed to share a bit on the same attitude on humans Dante did back then, not killing humans, but he did threaten them to stay away. Arkham was the one to show this, and he never even fully killed Lady when he has the chance to do so, even with Dante in his way in the third game. You knew he was dangerous, but he was a man with honor. In the manga, he wanted to intimidate Dante by proving he could take that necklace of his at any time he wished, which is why he gave it back. And in DMC3, he proved he could by taking down Dante in their first fight of that game.

Now, Carebear Craig has toned all of that down. He doesn’t look very threatening, yet is about as close to the original as possible in terms of looks, aside from that stupid hat of his. However, he does seem to have traded his honor for more underhanded tactics and intelligence, using his time on Earth to apparently get rich or use his riches to build The Order, the only thing apparently countering Mundus; we’ll ignore the fact that nobody else is doing this because the population of humans is being brainwashed by Mundus. Sadly, he isn’t very interesting, and sometimes easily caves into Dante’s plans. Now I am aware of the twist, but again, this goes against Vergil’s original character. The original Vergil wants power to do what his father could not: kill Mundus, and also avenge his mother. This Vergil? Rule the world, because humanity is so weak that someone needs to step in and take it over. Yes, let’s do this and forget about our father, the same one trapped in a hellish dimension. And the most important part? He is just too soft. With DMC Vergil, we understood him as a threat. This one? Even the boss fight wasn’t close to good as the DMC3 battle, or DMC1 for that matter when he was Nelo Angelo, and his dialogue isn’t entertaining in the slightest. In fact, some of his dialogue keeps betraying the kind of character he should be in the end by DmC standards. True, I want to see the two fight as brothers, but there’s a limit I can stand, like Carebear Craig telling Dante “And I have a bigger dick.”

…Ya know, I contacted the original Vergil about this. Down below was the reply I got:

Also, the two brothers? I would like to point out that the original look more like twins than the DmC ones do.

Also, the two brothers? I would like to point out that the original look more like twins than the DmC ones do.

As for Headbanger Tom here, my fears were correct. Now he can be compared with the DMC3 version of Dante, but the juvenile attitude is really amped up. He is not only annoying with his curse words and one-liners, but none of them are even funny, and he comes across more as an idiot and absurdly boring, a combination I never thought possible. We usually let bad actors get away with this sometimes, but that’s because they can be entertainingly bad, or they are well known. Let’s take everyone’s favorite former governor: Arnold Schwarzenegger. Now, his acting is nothing to write home about, but he is very well known, and I love to see this guy in action, doing his thing. Or how about Reb Brown? Spoony said the real reason he liked him was the sheer shouts he made during his action scenes and how very entertaining they were, and I agree, even if his acting range is very limited. Speaking of acting, much like from Carebear Craig, Headbanger Tom doesn’t have a good voice actor either, making him sound boring and irritating to listen to. I can definitely say at least gameplay improved when he shut up. His dialogue is filled with either swears, one-liners, or jokes that aren’t all that great.

There is maybe one joke that was actually funny. During the final battle, Headbanger Tom storms Mundus’ tower through limbo, and tries to take the elevator, which is a long ride. It plays this awful elevator music, and he says to himself: “Kat was right. This is hell.”

Look at me like that all ya want, I say it like it is.

Look at me like that all ya want, I say it like it is.

Now here’s another problem with the game with our main hero: the story again, and the characters in it. As fun as Dante is, I honestly don’t think he would be half as funny without a proper cast. People like Nero and Lady helped make him more likeable with their strong personality and their differences, and the same can be said in reverse. Again, even bad stories can invent good characters, and those good characters feed not on story alone, but by those they interact with, form deep bonds or understanding with one another. And I pin some weaknesses of Headbanger Tom on the very weak cast and relationships he has in this game. The only strong link is Kat, and even then, while she doesn’t come across nearly as bad as the Sparda brothers, she isn’t terribly interesting. Her purpose is mainly as the link to the human world and strength they posses, something Headbanger Tom actually points out. Sadly, the message of him getting to care about humanity could have been made stronger, watching humans forced to suffer as the game went on at the hands of demons, and yet at the same time, fighting back. The Order itself was practically the best example of this, but it was so lightly touched on with only Carebear Craig and Kat. Moreover, his role aside from hero seems to be stating the obvious or repeating what others say.

I know what you are thinking: the other game’s had little development. True, but it was powerful enough given the status of the characters and how they relate to one another, and their interactions in the story. There wasn’t some cheap throwaway in any of the games that served one purpose in the story, and then were never seen again. This game though, purpose is limited, Dante is defined and comes across as more annoying and boring as a result since we only see him either give a crappy performance and not care, or swear. Yes, he eventually does gain more of an attitude aside from those points, but by then, it’s already too late to care. I should wait five hours to care about a character in full? In an action game no less? Sorry, but even in an RPG, I can’t really take that. And even after all that, my hatred is focused heavily on all the other things. He is boring, plain and simple. I appreciate subtlety, as that was what the game tried to do, but that’s thrown at the window when you butcher the former characters this way, and as subtle as the Hulk picking daises as nuclear missiles are being shot out of the butts of rhinos!

And the last thing, the title, Devil May Cry. I discussed this in my last article, so I will repeat myself, since not a lot of people seem to realize this point that I am making. And don’t worry, I’ll sum it up quickly. The reason the title is this is because in the original games, you always had these monsters, these powerful beings like Dante that could have used their powers for evil, and some even fear of what they might become, and they were emotional enough to not only show a tear, but to show any emotion at all. Let’s face it, the basic consensus on demons is that they are malevolent beings. Sparda proved this wasn’t true, and to an extent, Phineas, perhaps the only character I genuinely like in DmC for reasons that are extremely few, have proven this wrong in this game, true, but they aren’t the main characters. Now this could have been done with Headbanger Tom here, but it wasn’t. The way this story flowed was so bland and uninteresting, the title feels meaningless. DMC2 at least had me feeling bad for Lucia because of what she was. This game? They can all blow up and I won’t care, and a game shouldn’t make me think that. I genuinely tried to accept these characters, but in the end, they came across as unlikeable, and not in the good or fun way like some villains are. The previous games made me care because I could feel the inner battle going on between the characters. These guys, not so much. I would choose a Twinkie over them.

But here’s the basic point of the plot, and why it affects the gameplay: If the game fails to make me care about the world or the character I am playing, where is my motivation to play? The gameplay? All well and good, but I discussed earlier how it seems toned down from all the other games, and how boring the boss fights looked compared to previous games. DMC was known for being brutally hard, and now fans actually have to force themselves to up the difficulty to even get a small taste of the former glory days. And this kinda almost negates all the good points I gave this game. Not only do I hate it, but as I wrap this up, that hate is turning into another emotion, summed in three words.

“I don’t care.”

Or in one word: "Meh."

Or in one word: “Meh.”

Let’s face it, at the end of the day, Capcom has decided that it is never going to bring back the old DMC again. For some reason, people thought there the stories that could be told were more limited. I disagree, as DMC4 was just touching on the subject of angels, and there are many other things to do with the series, like make a prequel to DMC as a whole, start the story with Sparda, or figure out a way to bring back Vergil and develop the bond between the three heroes. And think about not only religion, but other games that have touched on this stuff. Shin Megami Tensei is the perfect example, and I think the DMC license would honestly be better in their hands rather than Capcom or Ninja Theory. If it was like Final Fantasy, you could make a better argument, but those are original tales they try to tell, and there have only been four DMC games, excluding this DmC game, so there is no excuse for this unless rights had to force them to change. And even then, the overall plot could have made for a very interesting idea. Yet when I think about that part, that angers me even more than the change of Dante into Headbanger Tom, making me not care about this series as a whole. Anyone, fans of the series even like myself, could have made a much better tale to be told, and not rely on swear words. And for those that doubt Devil May Cry can be serious or dark, and think this game is superior, let me remind you of some dark story elements the old games had:

Lucia wanted to kill herself because she believed she was a threat to the world. Mundus twisted Dante’s image of his mother into Trish and then tried to kill him with it, along with turning his own brother into a threat. Vergil planned on bringing hell to Earth for sole purpose of gaining power to avenge their father. Arkham sacrificed his own wife, and forced Lady to suffer as a result of that, and all for power to rule the world. Kyrie was forced into be an energy source for Sanctus, who killed her brother, while Nero struggled with his demonic power, afraid to face scorn and be torn away from the only family he knows. Dante and Vergil were forced to survive in a world when their father had passed away, and their mother was slaughtered by demons, no doubt facing many challenges that forced their own views on the world, and eventually tore the brothers apart, forcing them against one another. And the anime alone was able to tell 12 episodes worth of story content, with the Japanese version taking out a lot of the humor and making Dante more serious, actually forcing him to take care of a young girl, something he wasn’t used to.

So, for those that say Devil May Cry is too silly, really look at the themes present. Are there problems with the old games? Oh hell yes! One of my biggest issues is that Sparda apparently lived for 2000 years and only had one family. You can argue that he might have been faithful, but the dialogue says that Eva was there to begin with. Was she a witch? Who knows!? Or how about the constant mistakes Dante makes on the job that can sometimes be face-palm worthy? I could write an article on those flaws, but those games, aside from 2, were at least entertaining, made me have fun with the character. This game does not, and as a result, fails as hard as DMC2. And for those that comment on this game not being silly, I remind you: you fight a fetus demon baby, a giant news head, and a demon sack thing that just spouts out curses. Now remind me, why is this game mature?

There were many elements in DmC that could have used improvement. If they had just sat and actually thought more on the story, the tale would be far more enjoyable. Hell, I can even a multiplayer function being added, dealing with the war between humans, angels, and devils, and I am the one who tends to hate multiplayer in a lot of games. I believe it is possible. But with this game as it is now? It’s terrible, and just “meh” worthy. If it can’t get me to care enough to play the game itself, then what is the point?

DmC earns a 2 out of 5, and that’s being generous given the torture I went through.

While I do hate the game, the game is still playable, and has fun and interesting weapon designs with a simplified combat system that newbies to the series can enjoy, while older players might appreciate it, but fact is, with this kind of story and easy gameplay, it’s almost negated with all of these failed ideas. If you REALLY want to buy this game, at the very least, my advice is to wait until the price goes down. I don’t hate fans of this new DmC. You guys are entitled to what you like. I do however hate those that lie about this game just for money, and get paid to write articles that tell fans of the old DMC off, and think we only hate Headbanger Tom for his looks alone. Now that the game is out, and everything I have written, it isn’t just Dante being changed. It’s everything, and how poorly it has been executed.

And as of this moment, DmC, I no longer care. Capcom, you were dead to me before, but you guaranteed the loss of a fan. And Ninja Theory, you lost my respect along with Capcom, and video game journalists that take your money just to give you a good score, and bash former fans of the series for feeling hurt for a series they have loved for over 11 years. We have grown up, and apparently you guys didn’t, and neither did this series.

But there is one thing those that hate the defenders of the old DMC that is right: the old games. They are still there, and even if the tale is unfinished, they should still hold a special place in our heart as Devil May Cry fans. Never be like me and let that love die. Nobody, even if Capcom killed the series, can that ever be taken away from you.

Guys, never let this die from your memory.

Guys, never let this die from your memory.

I’m Final, and I suffer so you don’t have to.


About The Smartest Moron

I am a college graduate of Temple University, majoring in Media Studies and Production. While hunting for jobs, I also do a review series on YouTube where I analyze stories/characters called The Smartest Moron.
This entry was posted in backseat review, Capcom, Devil May Cry, Ninja Theory, Xbox 360 and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Backseat Reviews: DmC (2013)

  1. Anon738 says:

    You have my condolences for having to sit and watch the whole thing, I really hope more people will be able to read this epic review. It’s kinda depressing, I used to love Capcom, but they have made such terrible decisions in the recent years.

    The script writing of Heavenly Sword (also by Ninja Theory) was absolutely amazing, I could not believe the same people wrote the abomination that is DmC, but then I found out that Ninja Theory had hired the daughter of Terry Pratchett herself to completely rewrite the script for them… so yeah, as far as I’m concerned, Ninja Theory has lost another fan.

    • Final says:

      Thanks for the comment!

      It’s really sad how both have fallen and could make such mistakes. And with others that seem to bash fans and think we only care about a simple hair change, I hope this article at least shows that isn’t the case. Headbanger Tom is kinda the least of this games problems when there was great potential in the story, and it was all wasted.

  2. Anthony says:

    You good sir have pointed out every valid point I could not have said myself and while I will still purchase games of interesting title from Capcom I will never forgive them for destroying my 11 year long love for this game/book/manga/anime series at all (All things considered after Megaman I should’ve seen this coming cause it seems if it doesn’t begin with street and end with fighter they don’t seem to care about it no more.). Thank you so much for sharing what I could never have found the words for.

    • Final says:

      Thanks for the comment and I am glad you enjoyed! 😉

      Still, never let the old DMC die from your heart. After all, Project X Zone is confirmed for USA release, and that has the original badass we all know and love, so there is hope. I just wish DMC was out of Capcom’s hands and with someone else, like Atlus.

      • Anthony says:

        Yeah I know what you mean but hey we could give it back to the man himself over at Platinum so he can continue this epic saga. As for mister Tameem his racist ass can go rot with his creation.

  3. Ronald Beck says:

    Rhianna Pratchett – thanx for ruining DmC.. The script is pathetic, luscious – over too feministic. The essential idea of the game, its tension and characters controvercy, the plot complexity and drama – exactly everything that made the game stand out was replaced with a bunch of silicon titties and a few F-words conversations – calling it mature. They’d rather let her rewrite another Tomb Raider sequel, instead of letting screw up upon the genre she has no idea of how to deal with. I liked graphics and gameplay – a bit too easy, but still quite fun. Of course that is nothing Devil May Cry has ever stood for. Another placebo in a stylish package.

    • Final says:

      Actually, Rhianna Pratchett was not responsible for this; she’s making the Tomb Raider reboot game and story. Rather, we can thank Tameem Antoniades. I’ll try and go into detail regarding him and how he made the new Dante look like him, while also ruining the story as well.

      Nonetheless, your words hold up true for Tameem.

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