Everyone loved Devil May Cry 1 and to this day it is widely declared as one of the best games on the PS2. On the other hand, Devil May Cry 2 was generally denounced by critics; though it was fun, and added some new-but-useless moves, it was mostly brushed off as a pathetic shadow of the original (except here at Mygamer). Because of the seemingly large gap in quality between the two, many didn?t know what to expect from the third installment. To add to the indecision, many were surprised to hear it was a prequel, and would finally establish some personality for Dante, and his reasons for establishing Devil May Cry. Well, everyone can rejoice, because Devil May Cry has never been better in any way.
The story takes place several years before DMC1. A younger, cockier, less-battle-hardened Dante is kicking back in his new inner-city home, trying to figure out a name for his new business. Before it even opens, a strange bald man approaches Dante and sends a pack of demons after him in his brother?s name. After a destructive battle, leaving his new shop in shambles, Dante sets out to pursue his brother. Along the way, Dante must address many issues with his past, particularly his mother?s death, and his father, Sparda. Though, everyone knows, this won?t end well.
The most important addition to DMC3 is the new ?Style? system. Before each mission, the player decides what fighting style Dante will use for the duration of the level. There are four styles to choose from: Swordmaster Style, Trickster Style, Gunslinger Style and Royal Guard Style. Each has a unique feel and different moves to be unlocked. Swordmaster Style puts a higher emphasis on, obviously, his swordsmanship. Pressing Circle has him do a propeller kind of move, where he spins his sword, barraging the enemy and sending them into the air. Also, some of Dante?s classic moves, like the Stinger (a sliding thrust) and the sword throw are both present. Trickster Style makes Dante much more evasive. Pressing Circle does the Invincible Dash, which shoots Dante around and renders him temporarily invulnerable to attacks. Also, Dante can do more elaborate dodges and wall-runs while in Trickster Style, generally making it the best style for new players. Gunslinger style is the best for taking on numerous enemies. Pressing Circle allows for an enhanced version of Dante?s multi-enemy shooting from Devil May Cry 2. However, this is very variable in its usefulness in some levels; it is usually either ideal or lacking. Last and least is Royal Guard Style. It allows you to guard, which just isn?t that fun. It is occasionally useful, but usually Trickster works better. Each one is quite fun, and has a great control to it. Despite the expansions, the game still feels like it is Devil May Cry. The sword has a standard three-hit combo that will be used regularly, button mashing is the best way to dispatch an enemy with the trusted Ebony and Ivory pistols, and there is still the questionable-at-best meter that tells you just how good your combos are. The game is still broken into levels, with random secret missions scattered throughout the game. Devil Arms (melee weapons) and guns are more abundant in this game, and are still upgradeable via Red Souls found by slaying enemies. However, DMC3 is massively more difficult than the prior games. In all likelihood, death will be incredibly frequent, which will probably require many many resets and level-up marathons, necessitating lots of back-tracking to collect Souls for items and upgrades in previously completed levels. However, the game flows so well that it is still fun to repeat levels over and over and over. On top of that, there are many great unlockables to be had, which will guarantee some replays.
The graphical style is different from the original DMCs. Dante looks much younger, less buff, and more realistic. Monsters from DMC1 and 2, like the witch-ghosts with scissors, look much better, with more anatomically-accurate proportions and a creepier look than in past installments. Dante?s render is nicely improved, with his trademark coat and feathered hair flowing better than ever. The voice acting is much better than in the past, which was critical for the higher emphasis on plot. Music has the normal heavy metal tirades during battle, with the creepy, ominous music out of battle. It sounds good though, and that?s what matters.
Devil May Cry 3 is definitely one of the best games on the PS2. With excellent gameplay and graphics, Capcom has greatly raised the bar in the action genre. Offering a quality experience, which can be played many times through, DMC3 will keep anyone returning. With exemplary graphics and sound, it is virtually flawless in every way. For any PS2 owner, this is certainly a must-buy.