Devil May Cry 4

Devil May Cry 4 Review for Xbox 360

On: Xbox 360PS3PC

The fourth game in the series. The game is set after Devil May Cry but before Devil May Cry 2.

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8Out of 10
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This is the first true "next-gen" DMC game, but fans will find it instantly familiar.
This is the first true "next-gen" DMC game, but fans will find it instantly familiar.

This is the first true "next-gen" DMC game, but fans will find it instantly familiar.

The great thing about DMC4 is that all the hallmarks of the series have been wonderfully recreated, despite the fact you'll for the most part be playing as someone other than Dante. You've got the most annoying hard-rock soundtrack in history to listen to every time demons start on you. You've got orb collection, to spend on items, and Proud Souls, earned through completing missions, to spend on upgrading Nero and Dante's weaponry, combos and abilities. You've got one of the most incompetent cameras ever to grace a videogame (what's up Capcom? Surely this should be fixed by the fourth game), and you've got gothic surroundings, a ridiculous plot, buxom women and hammy voice acting.

And you've also got the classic Capcom action game combat, as seen in the DMC and Onimusha series. People often look down their noses at these so-called button-mashing games and snort - citing the lack of skill required and the repetitive nature of the combat. We can certainly see their point - most of the combos in the game involve differently-timed presses of the same button combined with varied control stick directions - but there's an odd, addictive and totally rewarding nature to it all. Sure, you've just spent half-an-hour carving through similar-looking demons in a cathedral using the same combo string over and over again, but you know you love it. This feeling, a feeling unique to the DMC series, reassuringly remains in the fourth game, despite the switch up in main playable characters.

But, and this is a big but, Nero's fun to use Devil Bringer, and the spectacular special attacks it allows, is still no match for Dante's varied, quicker, more powerful attack style. Again, we're trying desperately to avoid spoilers here, but when you do eventually get to play as Dante, it's almost as if the game has been released from the shackles imposed by Nero's combat limitations. We've got nothing against the guy, but, at the end of the day, he's got nothing on Dante. As one of the game's chief baddies says of Nero: "he's not in Dante's league." He's right.

How much of a problem is this? Well it wouldn't be any problem at all, if it weren't for Capcom's almost inexplicable decision to regurgitate Nero's missions, and bosses, for Dante to traipse through. This is somewhat of a kick in the teeth - you work your way through the game, finally get the chance to give Dante a spin, and you find that you have to do it against enemies and in locales you've already seen. Dante himself feels fresh. Everything else, once you get to play him however, stinks.

When you do get to play as Dante, you'll be backtracking through familiar environments.

When you do get to play as Dante, you'll be backtracking through familiar environments.

We'll go into a bit more detail, since the backtracking is perhaps the one that prevents DMC4 from being a nine-out-of-10 in our opinion. As you work your way through the game you'll solve puzzles in creepy castles, battle countless demons in war-torn city streets, uncover insane experiments in an underground laboratory, work out how to escape a forest maze and defeat ice creatures on the wind-swept cliffs of snow-capped mountains. You'll face some truly spectacular, and sometimes frustratingly difficult, bosses in encounters which require much more skill than anything else in the game, too. And then you get to play as Dante, and instead of the game presenting you with new locations and enemies to kill, DMC4 does a kind of loop, forcing you to go backwards through all the areas you've already spent hours traipsing through until you end up at the beginning. You fight the same bosses too, with little or no variation on the first time. After the elation of getting your trigger finger firmly poised to fire Dante's amazing death-bringing weaponry, it's all a bit of a letdown.

What's not a letdown but a complete pain in the ass is the fact that once you get control of Nero again, for the game's home straight, you have to fight the bosses all over again in a roll the dice snakes-and-ladders style puzzle that's so frustrating it makes you want to gauge your own eyes out with a spoon. Once with Nero was cool. A second time with Dante was a drag. But a third time? That's just taking the piss.

There are other problems. We've mentioned the camera but we'll mention it again, it's that bad. In one puzzle section you need to hit spinning blades along corridors in order to smash down doors. It's almost impossible to aim accurately because of the constantly shifting camera, which automatically changes what up, down, left and right is on the control stick. There are odd moments when enemies will get stuck in walls and on ledges too, but these are rare and largely forgivable. And the game doesn't do anything to help you work out where to go (some players will actually prefer this), meaning you'll need to accept that for extended periods of time, sometimes as much as 30 minutes, you'll just be running around like a chump trying to work out where to go next.

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maria lopardo's Avatar
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maria lopardo

hi i love dante i thin he is sexy call me and the one upabov is maria that's me so call me the numbers you know are 718-256-1412
Posted 01:26 on 03 June 2008
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Mari LoPardo

Give this to Hioyuki Kobaashi .Is it ok if me my friends and sister make the next devil may cry story we got the sript just call me the numbers are 718-256-1412
Posted 01:21 on 03 June 2008
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RainKing422

I would say that an 8 out of 10 is giving this game far too much credit. Don't get me wrong, I did enjoy the game, but I feel that the sheer repetitive nature of the game is highly more detrimental to what its score should be versus the score you give it (honestly you play through it twice--forward the first time as Nero and backwards the second time as Dante..and you fight the exact same 4 or 5 bosses 3 times throughout the game). You say in the review that you suspect Capcom built the game for Nero and decided later into the game design to throw Dante in. I'll go one step further by saying that they sent Nero through all the levels that they developed then when they realized that they hadn't developed enough content, they sent Dante through the same levels in reverse order. For a game that's 20 levels there's surprisingly little new content- game or environment wise- after level 12. This is an 8 hour game in a 16 hour framework, and I feel that this strategy was just a cheap means of artificially lengthening it to make it seem longer. Don't get me wrong, as I said I enjoyed the first bit of the game, but I felt a bit gypped by such a flagrantly and frankly lazy repetition of content to double the length of the game. Here's a note to Capcom for DMC5...if you're going to have 20 levels in the game, plan and program 20 different levels and if you're going to have 15 boss battles, make it 15 different bosses and not the same 5 boss battles repeated 3 times. No amount of stunning visuals and dynamic gameplay should allow a game to receive a higher rating than it deserves due to insufficient content, insufficient planning, and utilizing a lazy method of artificially lengthening the playtime.
Posted 08:20 on 16 March 2008
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Sure

Excellent game despite all the recycled bosses and levels

DMC3 is still the best though
Posted 01:29 on 29 February 2008
jimbob jones's Avatar
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jimbob jones

great game! but i wiched dante had more of a part......nero sucks!
Posted 00:23 on 12 February 2008
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lolgubbe

Good game and 8/10 is a good score for this game
Posted 10:21 on 07 February 2008
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Wido

Good review, seeing as I got this game a week early. And I must admit its a brillant game, specially its Feb and its not the best of all months. But it does make your day the combat is still good, and the scenes are superb and the graphics are very good.
Posted 18:48 on 05 February 2008
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xboxlive

i played the demo on the xbox 360 and it played ok got in to it and that but il think il leave this to the missis to buy me lol
Posted 18:43 on 05 February 2008
NinetiesKid's Avatar

NinetiesKid

Very good review mate, I can't wait for this game! Already pre-ordered the LE :D
Posted 17:15 on 05 February 2008

Game Stats

Technical Specs
Devil May Cry 4
8
Out of 10
Devil May Cry 4
  • Classic DMC gameplay
  • Gorgeous graphics
  • Lots of backtracking
  • Nero isn't as good as Dante
Agree? Disagree? Get Involved!
Release Date: 08/02/2008
Platforms: Xbox 360 , PS3 , PC
Developer: Capcom
Publisher: Capcom
Genre: Action
No. Players: One
Rating: PEGI 16+
Site Rank: 1,866
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