Devil May Cry 3: Dante’s Awakening
By Charlie Goodrich Friday, 1 Apr 2005

Devil May Cry 3 restores this franchise to the good side of gaming. Because let’s face it, DMC2 was a definite step in the wrong direction. Thankfully Capcom came to its senses and made some good changes. They changed the atmosphere of the game, the graphics, and improved the story.

Capcom decided to do a prequel this time. The events that happen in DMC3 happen before the events in the first game. Dante is about to open his shop when Hell breaks loose. Literally. It turns out his brother, Virgil, is trying to obtain the power of their father. Dante has to put his shop keeping duties on hold and start kicking ass. As the story unfolds you learn more about the ambitions of other characters and things start to make sense. It is a shame that some parts of the script are badly written. With DMC you would expect over the top dialog but sometimes it is too cheesy. Overall a good turn around form DMC2.

The gameplay in DMC3 is as fun as always. Right from the beginning you’ll be dicing through and blasting holes through demons. You can equip two guns and two melee weapons that you can switch between by pressing either L2 or R2. This allows you to create awesome combos and keeps the killing fresh. Capcom also added styles that Dante can equip. With two of these he can do special melee attacks, or gun attacks. With the third Dante can dash and run on walls. And the fourth allows Dante to block enemy attacks. Picking the right style can make some bosses or levels much easier to beat.

The sound in DMC3 is good and bad. The bad being the soundtrack. It blends rap and techno into a terrible concoction. I couldn’t take it so I put on headphones and listened to music until a cutscene. The good is the sound effects. Everything has a good sound to it. Ranged and melee attacks sound great. Another positive note for the sound crew is that the voice acting is pretty good. Dante keeps his cocky, badass attitude. And the other characters have voices that fit there personalities. For example, Virgil has an arrogant attitude like Dante but he talks in a more sophisticated manner. This suits him because you would expect some twins to act differently from one another.

The graphics are the best thing about DMC3. I know that is a shallow thing to say but it is true. The cinematics are especially beautiful. The lighting is well done by PS2 standards. The environments help pull you into the game. Hell looks like hell. Debris lines the streets of the deserted city. The inside of a giant flying whale looks disgusting. The only bad thing about the graphics is the character models. They look great, but there is too little variety in them. Later enemies look exactly like enemies from early stages they just take longer to kill.

Judas Priest just released Angel of Redemption and it seems that Capcom has given us Devil of Redemption. I will offer all that take up this game a warning. DMC3 is hard. By hard I mean this game will own you no matter how good of a gamer you are. Nothing I can say will prepare you for the onslaught you will receive. As soon as you unlock easy mode chances are you will switch to it. There is no shame in doing so. Beating DMC3 on easy will train you for normal. If you are a fan of the DMC series, don’t let the second game discourage you from buying this one.