Those HD remakes are coming out thick and fast. Classic games all on one disc at your fingertips. all shiny with new HD graphics. The urge to re-buy them is overpowering. The latest to be added is the kick-ass series of Devil May Cry. Before Bayonetta, there was Devil May Cry, which made the hack and slash series sexy. Dante, in his long red leather jacket and guns Ebony and Ivory, first blasted his way onto our TV screens back in 2001 on the PlayStation 2. There were plenty of action games available at the time but nothing had been made like Devil May Cry before; it was unique and exciting. Dante became the cockiest protagonist since Sonic the Hedgehog. Women loved him and men wanted to play as him. Well, I love him! Full of demon blood and attitude, Dante has become one of the most recognized figures in gaming.
The first game starts off with a young, trash talking Dante working in his club”Devil May Cry” and being attacked by the mysterious Trish. The surprise attack was merely a test to prove young Dante is the son of the legendary demon Sparta. She has come with information on a demon emperor named Mundus. This demon may have been the one behind the death of Dante’s mother and brother, so he is not about to pass up his change for vengeance. He teams up with Trish and leaves for some demon ass kicking! The game is split into “Missions” you need to complete to advance in the game. At the end of each mission you are rewarded with grades (A-D, with S being the top grade) throughout your battle performance in that mission. There is also the “Devil Trigger”. Using this allows Dante to transform into a powerful demon to unleash stronger attacks and defence. It also restores his health and gives him special attacks.
Devil May Cry 2 sees Dante team up with a playable character Lucia. They need to stop Arius, a businessman with demonic powers hellbent on taking over the world ‒ aren’t they all? You are given the choice at the start of the game who to play as. This time round Dante and Lucia can dodge in battle and run along walls to get out of the enemies path. A weapon change button was also presented in game, so switching weapons is quicker and easier. The Devil Trigger is back and Lucia can use it this time as well. The player still advances the game through missions like the previous one.
The final installment in this collection is that of Devil May Cry 3: Dante’s Awakening. The story takes place before the events of DMC1 and features Dante’s brother Vergil. It’s not all about brotherly love, however, the sons of Sparta hate each other. Vergil wants the human and demon worlds to connect and needs Dante’s amulet to do this. Of course Dante is not going to hand it over so easily. A new feature was choosing which battle style you wanted for Dante from a choice of six; Swordmaster, Trickster, Royal Guard, Gunslinger, Quicksliver and Doppelganger. Each one different and available to change at checkpoints before the next mission. There was also a special edition of DMC3 released in which you played as Vergil, a new survival mode called Bloody Palace, Turbo mode for faster gameplay and a continue system which lets you start from the beginning of the fight or throw you straight back into the action!
OK, but how does the HD collection perform? When starting a new game you are told that if you want to start another new game from the collection, you have to restart. You can’t quit out of the game menu to access the main menu. You have to go back to the dashboard and start all over. It’s not a massive issue, but why not add the option to quit out of one game and continue in another instead of heading back to the Xbox dashboard? Unfortunately all menus, including the one in DMC3 are presented in the 4:3 ratio. I dont understand why time is given to make cutscenes in widescreen, but the menus haven’t been tweaked at all. Surely it would have been easier and quicker than altering the cutscenes? Again it may not seem like a massive issue but making the menus in widescreen instead of pushed together in 4:3 would have made the menu easier to read.
It can be frustrating when the cut scenes that don’t run through the game engine are also presented in the 4:3 ratio. However the computer generated movies are presented in widescreen in Devil May Cry 3: Dante’s Awakening. So why aren’t they like that in the previous two games? Developers perhaps thought it wasn’t important, but if you want to bring the collection into HD then do it for all the games, not just one out of three. Also adjusting brightness is tiresome. Some cutscenes are still so dark even after the brightness is turned up. But the brightness must be altered through my TV, not through the game’s options. Again, why not add this feature? And last but not least is the Capcom camera angles! You can’t escape them. They featured in Resident Evil and haven’t been scrapped in DMC. Confusing, frustrating and dated. The camera angles should have been the first thing that was revamped for the collection.