Thursday, February 21, 2008

Preview: Devil May Cry 4

Devil May Cry 4 (2008)
Developer: Capcom Co., Ltd.
Platform: PlayStation 3
Purchase Date: 02/11/2008

The DMC series has its ups and downs. Its strength has always been the maniacal fast-paced action that should be considered as nothing less than epic, mostly involving the game's hero Dante swinging his big sword and blasting his guns at a plethora of demonic creatures. As manic as the action gets, the games have never been a button masher. It takes a lot of skill to get stylish points and to successfully venture through the games' highly demanding difficulties - something that Capcom apparently treated as a problem that needed to be fixed since this one is relatively easy.

The installation screen: nice and naughty at the same time.

When you first start the game, you have to install some 4.9GB of game files into your HDD. With PC game installation being extremely fast these days, it is still disappointing that you have to wait around 20 minutes just to get those measly amount of data into the console. Capcom added a nice slideshow of the game's history during the installation but it only lasted for a short time before repeating itself. A nice try to make the long wait somewhat more bearable. What is more baffling is that even though you have the data installed, there are still loading screens everywhere in the game. I heard overall the game loads faster than the X-Box 360 version but come on, justify that wait time with something more impressive.

The game looks hot!

Though Dante is in the game, the real hero here is Nero who can be described as the angst-ridden, still witty but less cheesy version of Dante. He is a part of an organization called "Order of the Swords" and the game begins with a brutal demonic invasion against the order while introducing a shameless love story amidst the chaos. It is Nero's duty to find the source of the attack and stop it for good. Nero brings a different tone to the game: so far it feels a bit more like a teenage drama than the tongue-in-cheek cheese that the previous games were before. The character models are stunning across the board and I love their real time use in the gorgeously choreographed cinemas. At a time when every video game wants to have that open ended feel - this even infected the new Burnout Paradise - it is nice to see DMC4 sticks to its roots and the game is still segmented by missions that can be replayed at your leisure. It is a shame that Sony lost this as an exclusive because it could have been a major system seller for them.


Version Note: Played both downloadable demos and I found
this version to have noticeably sharper textures than the X-Box 360.

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