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Devil May Cry | 3 | review | game | Lollipop

Devil May Cry 3

(Capcom for PS2)
by Mike Delano

Much has been made about how hard Devil May Cry 3 is, and rightly so. No one likes a game to have such utter contempt for the player that it requires the Zen-like skills usually reserved for sadists playing toward mastery just to progress on its easiest setting. Measly power-ups, infuriating boss battles wherein losing means restarting an entire level: They're all here to beat your patience into the ground.

And, you might say, for what? The last Devil May Cry entry was a near total derailment of a series. Entertaining and fairly addictive, but not exactly groundbreaking. Since 3 doesn't exactly start with a bang in the storyline department, why stick around when there are a slew of other more accessible PS2 adventures?

Well, try as you might to resist, you'll stick around because the gameplay is so damn good. It's amazing, really. DMC 3 is so fun to play, there's just no putting it down. Dante, your character, can run, jump, dash, and switch from sword to shotgun to mystical nun chucks so effortlessly that it's disconcerting how often you'll find yourself running headfirst right back into the fire.

But for all his ninja skills, controlling Dante for the first quarter of the game feels like Sir Arthur running around in his boxer shorts. As crazy as you are, your enemies are much, much crazier, and their life meters are much, much longer. Only after several stages do you have the confidence to make a genuine go of it, and even then, it's an uphill battle.

The storyline and atmosphere of the Devil May Cry series have always appeared to be ripped right out of the anime universe, from the character design to the ultra-violence to the medieval/ futuristic settings. In this installment, Dante must pursue his evil brother Vergil through the various locales of an enormous tower that springs up in the middle of a dark cityscape. Even when the storyline is a bore, the environments are fantastic, and the dramatic tension of a mid-game battle with your brother at the top of the tower is worth the price of admission.

When it comes down to it, the difficulty (including the grossly misnamed "easy" mode which presents itself to the player after repeated deaths) should've been altered for accessibility and enjoyment. For the depraved who put their time in, the reward is a top-notch action game that succeeds not because of expensive cut scenes, celebrity voice actors, or movie licensing, but for its truly remarkable gameplay experience.


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