jimbo_n's Devil May Cry 4 (PlayStation 3) review

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A well directed, well produced, over the top stylish actiongame.

Some people just dont get it. They dont get the wonderful humor that is DMC. They actually have the guts to complain about DMC4s cheesy dialogue and over the top cutscenes. They are actually complaining about the female characters that are as over the top sexy as Dante is over the top cool. My opinion is that Devil May Cry 4 is one of the funnist games I have ever played, and I mean that in the pure "humor" sense of the word. The cutscenes are completely soaked in the best fighting coreography I have ever witnessed and the most wonderfully cheesy dialogue I have ever listened to and you can do nothing but love it. To hear the line "I wish you had noticed me a little earlier, now my coat is all burned" from Dante while hes sitting on the tail of a burning demon with one foot on top of the tail, trying to get the huge demons attention is awesome combined with the technometal that is slowly building up in the background as the demon gets enraged and Dante jumps off the tail. The coreography of the cutscenes are so good I feel the movieindustry should take a look at the game the next time they want to make cool actionscenes. Theres actionscenes in this game that just make you literally laugh out loud. Well, if you remember the cutscenes from Devil May Cry 3 you already know what im talking about, only this time they are accompanied by breathtaking HD visuals.

DMC4 is also an extremely beautiful game, and I just dont mean technically. The opening intro with the new playable character Nero running down the street slashing up demons on his way to not miss his girlfriends operaperformance in the church almost want to make me cry. The clear, wonderful vocals of his beloved Kyrie singing the most beautiful operaserenade my ears have ever heard are filling my room with emotion while you catch glimpses of her standing in the church singing and Nero hacking and slashing his way through hordes of demons is really the best introducion this game could possibly have. Theres also alot of cutscenes showing Neros emotions for his Kyrie very openly and the love grows while you play the game. The contrast between the extreme coolness and the extreme romance and deep feelings shown works very well.

Alright. So DMC4 is a hack n slash oriented actiongame from the producer of Resident Evil 4, Hiroyuki Kobayashi. The man is a genious when it comes to making stylish, intimate action, awesome cutscenes and superb story, because yea, DMC has a story you actually care for this time around.
A religious order in a small coastal village are trying to wake up a god. Nero has some kind of demon arm that he isnt sure why he has or what it is and the game starts off with Dante putting a bullet through the head of the Orders high priest for some reason. Neros beloved Kyrie gets dragged into this mess, the powers of Neros arm awakens and Dantes motives becomes more and more clear as Nero sets off to find him after the assassination. And who is the mysterious Gloria and how does it all tie together with the legend of Sparda and the legendary sword Yamato.
The story actually goes way deeper, feautures a guest appearance from Lady, a trip back to Dantes Devil May Cry club and unravels alot before the final confrontation and it suprised me by being interesting the whole way through.

You play half the game as Nero. This young, smartmouthed kid with white hair and a trenchcoat, much like a young Dante. Only Nero has this Demon arm that he can use to grab enemies or objects to pull himself through the air. This arm, combined with swordcombos serves up some insanely satisfying combat where you launch an enemy up into the air, pull yourself up after him, hit him with a long sword combo, the pull him back up to you, hit him again, slam him down into the ground, pull yourself off to a flying demon next to you keeping yourself airborne, hit that flying demon, drag yourself off to the next flying demon, hit it, then drag yourself back to the first one .e.t.c It serves as a huge help when it comes to juggling enemies and keeping yourself airborne. It also serves for grabbing enemies and throwing them in different cool motions and it has a huge role to play versus the games many bosses. Almost in every case you are supposed to weaken the boss until you can get a good hold on it with your demon arm. This will trigger an insane combo where Nero grabs the boss and do some crazy stuff with him/her/it taking away a huge chunk of health from it. Nero dosent have any "styles" tho. No "Swordmaster" or "Gunslinger". Nero is a bit easier to play compared to Dante and serves as a good warmup for the 2nd part of the game.

After half the game you switch and start to play as Dante and it feels like DMC3 all over again but with an older, wiser and more calmed down version of him. Nero has taken over the impatient, childish part while Dante always remains cool and calm and often calls Nero for "kid". Dante has his standard sword, guns and 4 fightingstyles wich can all be upgraded with points you collect over the course of each mission. You also gather red orbs just like before that you can use to buy items to help you along the way.
Overall the combat with both guys are extremely satisfying. DMC4 really shows how combat in this type of game should work. Combos are stringing together to form beautiful fights that feel like they are rocking your world even without rumble in the controller. The combat feels hard, dynamic, fast and very very fun. I cant help but feel sorry for previous games of this type on the PS3 because this game makes them all look like pathetic attemps at making great combat. Combat dosent get more satisfying than in this game and its what drives you forward.

DMC4 is the most streamlined version in the series so far. Everyone can now find their difficulty. For some reason some hardcore fans think this is a bad thing but play through the game once on the "hard" difficulty and you´ll unlock even harder modes. On the other hand you can chose "human" when starting a new game and you can enjoy the game start to finish without even dying if thats your thing. You can even set the game to pull off "Automatic combos" for you so just just have to buttonmash to see this huge array of supercombos. Theres really no reason to miss out on this great actiongame now.

The bosses are some of the most satisfying bosses since the classic NES & SNES days. I cant even begin to explain the adrenalinerush that kicks in after the "bossintro" cutscene when a superb technosong kicks in and makes your subwoofer cry. This huge thing stands in front of you and starts to load up its first patterns of attacks. When you manage to get a couple of really good 4 or 5 hit combos off on it you feel so good about yourself you wanna drop the controller and go "YEA BABY YEA". When finishing it & seeing it die in a spectacular manner I almost feel like its the best game ever, every time. Saying to myself "did I just pull those insane combos off" "Did I just beat that? WOW"

When it comes to its presentation, DMC4 gains as much bonuspoints as you can get. The presentation in this game is flawless. The visuals are stunning. Some of the environments are on par with the best looking stuff I have seen in videogaming, inclusing a djungle that was almost on par with Uncharted. The characters animate so beautiful it even blows these superanimation-games like Uncharted away and dont even get me started on the characterdesign. One word. Awesome. Every character is designed to be the coolest videogame characters ever and almost everyone are. Every piece of clothing, every weapon they carry, and all the little details like leatherbracelets and sunglasses makes me totally fall in love with the character design. They really have unique personalities that really shines through. Before playing the game I almost felt like Dante and Nero were the same person. Now, after finishing it, they couldnt be more different. Now I dont think they have any deisngfeat in common except the hair. Trish is one of the coolest digital women you can lay your eyes on and its a real shame she only appears in 2 or 3 cutscenes total.

The music is a bit more widespread this time around. You have your standard technometal that kicks in when theres enemies spawning and you have a unique track in the same genre at every boss. Then you have this beautiful classical scores with violin, stunning operavocals and so much emotion you want to cry. In some occasions theres these superepic tunes that sound like they were picked straight out of a Hans Zimmer soundtrack. All said and done the soundtrack is perfect except from the fact that you get pretty tired of the tune that plays exacly the same way in every monsterspawn battle.

Very sadly not everything in DMC4 is perfect tho. First of all, yea...theres backtracking.. and yea, backtracking sucks. The game is so bad at telling you where to go in some instances I actually managed to backtrack myself back to the start of the game after playing for 2 hours. And the thing that really bothers me is that its actually possible to do so. The game dosent tell you "Hey, stop, youre going in the wroooong direction dude". The minimap dosent help you either. No little arrow or pointer as to where you are supposed to be heading. There are some parts of the game where you end up running around confused in circles thinking "ok, thats it, Im checking an online guide right now". As if this wasnt enough the whole 2nd part of the game, where you play as Dante is the exact same stages as the first part of the game, the only difference being that you are backtracking your way back to the beginning of the game again instead of going forward. So Half the game is you, completing the same stages you have already completed for 5 hours but in reverse order. This is very unfortunate. It would have been more fun to play levels unique to Dante or if they would at least have thrown in some unique stuff for Dante to do on the levels.

Another thing that I cant let go is the camera combined with the unprecise jumping controls. The camera can really work against you sometimes. More often than not you can adjust the camera but I really shouldnt have to adjust it in every room I enter.

The most important thing about this game tho is that is so much "cooler" than pretty much anything. Every designchoice was made towards the vision to make this the defenition of the word COOL and when it comes to cool looking action theres really nothing that matches DMC4. The attention to detail in cutscenes, characters, battles and combos are so well made towards this vision. And to anyone that actually complains on cheesy dialogue, over the top crazy actionscenes or women with sexy clothes: Get over yourselves & get a sense of humor while you´re at it.
Even tho I backtack way more than I want to I couldnt stop playing because I wanted to see the next cutscene and I wanted to get to the next battle, and that feeling never ever fades and I really did not want the game to end. Im goint to ramp up the difficulty and get another playthrough before putting this game on the shelf, and this time I know where to backtrack! I am being a bit generous with the score here but theres so much in this game worth saluting it weighs up some sloppy designchoices.

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