Rate this review: DMC HD Collection
Devil May Cry HD Collection
High: The last boss battle in DMC 1
Low: DMC 2 tank battle
WTF: A guitar that shoots bats? Rock on!
So, there comes a time in a man’s life when he becomes curious. He starts to ask questions. Questions about his lineage, his forefathers, and his family history. Questions like:
“Who were my ancestors?”
“What kind of man was my grandfather?”
“Was he a bad ass?”
Devil May Cry HD Collection for Xbox 360 was released on April 3 2012. I was glad that Capcom decided to re-release this trilogy of classics, and decided to take a bullet filled trip down memory lane.
Let's start with the first game in the series, the original and pioneer of all modern beat'em ups: Devil May Cry. Right off the bat I noticed an upgrade in the visuals. This is apparent in the amazing opening scene of the game, the colors look vibrant and textures come out looking crisp and clean. Yes, the HD visual up grade looks great. The lonely castle on Mallet Island never looked so good. Unfortunately the pre rendered cut scenes did not come out as well, with almost all of them looking blocky, muddy and pixilated. Perhaps this is a technological limitation or someone didn't want to spring the cash for brand new cut scenes to be developed. No matter the castle interiors look great.
Now I was surprised how well the combat engine held up over the years, many newer current generation brawlers could learn a lot from the original Devil May Cry. Despite it's age, and the fact that it's been copied countless times, the combat was smooth, stylish and still a blast to play. The last boss fight is still an amazing experience after all these years. It kept making me think "Bayonetta, eat your heart out!" If you haven’t experienced Devil May Cry, do yourself the favour and play this game.
Up next is the second entry in the trilogy: Devil May Cry 2. So, what was the story about in Devil May Cry 2? I wish I could tell you. There wasn't one. As far as I can tell DMC2 is a series of streets strung together by a wavy haired Dante running down them. All the things that made the first game great are gone in this game. Awesome music? Gone. Unique and bizarre looking enemies? Gone. Intense, nail biting and challenging encounters? Gone. The combat seems bland and slower. At one point Dante finds himself on a barren street with a few tanks intent on putting a stop to his empty quest. What ensues is one of the most boring stretches of combat you will ever encounter in a game. I literally hammered on the Y button while standing beside the tanks. Tons of fun.
Speaking of empty spaces, there is just too much it in Devil May Cry 2. Most of the time you'll be running down a long empty street or alley with no interaction. The creators attempted to introduce an amulet system, but it comes across as clunky and burdensome. Even the inclusion of a second playable character seemed tacked on.
One redeeming quality of DMC 2 is the visuals. It’s actually a half way decent looking game. The HD upgrade translates well to the aged graphics engine, and the visuals come across clean and sharp.
So what the hell happened to DMC 2? Why was series creator Hideki Kamiya not asked to helm the sequel? Why was the combat dumbed down? What happened to the story? What the hell was the story about? Who knows? You could skip DMC 2 and you won’t be missing much.
This brings us to the third and final entry of the trilogy: Devil May Cry 3 Special Edition, and wow! All I can say is “welcome back Dante!” Everything that was great about the original is back and cranked up to the max in this third entry. Intense, frenetic battles come back but are even crazier now! The combat system is honed to a fine edge, with multiple style systems, many unique weapons and many different moves to be mastered. This allows the player to tackle combat situations in unique ways that reflect their overall play style. The awesome music track returns and is a perfect match to the intense fights. With all this great stuff the game has going for it, strangely enough the visuals haven’t benefited from the HD upgrade. Although the game looks sharp on a HDTV it just doesn’t go much farther than that. A minor complaint to and other wise incredible experience.
Well that’s that. Devil May Cry HD Collection is a great game and the devs put some effort in bringing it to the HD era, granted you could skip Devil May Cry 2.
So, if you ever wondered who fathered the likes of Kratos, Ryu Hayabusa, Juliet Starling, Nariko, War, Seig Warheit, Dante Alighieri, Captain Titus, and countless others, or you’re a fan of the originals, look to the Devil May Cry HD Collection. Keep on rockin’ baby!
Disclosures: This game was obtained via rental and reviewed on the Xbox 360. Approximately 30 hours of play was devoted to single-player modes (completed 2 times).