We’ve been speculating that a new release from the Devil May Cry franchise has been imminent for a while now. That’s why when Capcom announced a new DMC game at the Tokyo Game Show, it came as little shock.
What did come as a shock was the new direction Capcom is taking the game in and the bold new look of the main character. I use the word bold sparingly. Dante has never looked this much like an average Joe. So if you’re a raging fan of the DMC series like i am, i suppose you should be glad that there’s a new game coming out.
It’s titled DMC, which as we know is an abbreviation for Devil May Cry. I know i dont sound very excited, but it’s a little hard to explain. Here, just watch the reveal trailer, you’ll understand.
Did you see it? Good. Now, perhaps you understand why I don’t sound as enthusiastic as I should. Even though there is no gameplay, and anything I say is subject to changing and expanding information, the initial shock of the video is strong enough to send a fan angrily from Capcom’s superior midst.
Handling itself like some kind of redesign or reboot, the game doesn’t seem to take much from its best selling formers, which is bound to be a problem since most people have bought the sequential DMC games for those merits; the undeniably cool Dante, the dangerously stylish action, the unique combat system and ambiance. Which of these merits are intact remains to be seen but things certainly don’t look good.
What say I jot down all the things wrong with this video in contrast to the expanse of series staples I know of being a longtime fan. The first thing we’re shown in the video is a quote from the philosopher David Hume. I can’t say I remember seeing this in any of the four other DMC games, but this is only the beginning of that feeling.
We are then shown a sprawling city whose architectural design and composition isn’t too far from what we’ve seen in the other games, which is doubtlessly a good thing. The next thing we see is some sad, tortured looking figure bound in chains in what looks like an interrogation room. A deep voiced narrator is babbling about the psycho-evaluation of a subject 644-A.
Another dark voice then asks the very pathetic looking, tortured man “What is your name” at this point we’re shown a close up of the prisoner and he looks so very flimsy that you couldn’t care much less what his name was. As they zoom in on the man, it is revealed that he has red eyes.
In the next scene this same red eyed man is having himself a cigarette and these admittedly strange, possibly demonic figures appear. He then proceeds to put his cigarette out on the scalp of one of these figures.
The man looks odd at best. He has black hair, a ridiculous haircut and an ensemble of black and red clothes that look fairly emo. He then whips out twin guns and lays into another one of the demonic figures. It is at this point that you realize that this man is actually Dante, the son of Sparda.
Then, intermittent scenes of the shackled man and …err….Dante decimating more figures are shown, backed by a racy punk rock number, as the dark voice asks the prisoner again for his name. Mean while Dante is making use of a transforming weapon and then a car quite admirably.
In the next scene, the camera draws back and shows him sheathing his twin guns. It is also at this time that you notice a small patch of white hair in the back of his head. He ominously says “My name is Dante…” before falling backwards off of a building.
So the tortured figure we’ve been gazing upon this entire time is Dante? The Dante? Legendary Dark Knight and son of a demon king? Strange right? From what we know Dante to be capable of, it’s terribly odd to think that someone chained him down and tortured him until he told them his name. Dante has slain gods, yet there he is, being tortured. So I guess right now we can rule out that he’ll spend all his time making snide remarks and bullying giant demons in the new game.
Then we see him in costume and it’s a little depressing. He’s wearing mostly black, with hints of red here and there. His red jacket has been completely scrapped in exchange for an almost entirely black look. See exhibit A and B.
Exhibit A-1 DMC 3 Dante
Exhibit A-2 DMC New Dante
Exhibit B-1 DMC4 Dante
Exhibit B-2 DMC New Dante
I’m sure you’ve noticed by now but his hair has been changed from white to black with a white spot in the back. This coincides with the change in the clothing color, but when you think about it, white would have worked just as well with the black ensemble right? See Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children if you’re unsure.
The real reason for the hair color change, I assume, is because of the change in his skin color. Dante typically has a light tan, an almost brownish tint. See exhibit C. You’ll notice from the video that Dante’s now as pale as a ghost. While it’s initially a little alerting, because of Dante’s nature we can’t infer that this is a change in race, but instead a change in his appearance.
Notice also that he looks older. Now, does anyone think that Dante looks much, much cooler in the older games or is it just me? I suppose that’s personal preference, but why were these alarming and arguably degenerative changes needed? Before you answer, remember that Keiji Inafune said (of the next DMC installment) himself that changes would be made to make the game more appealing to western audiences and that sales were low on this side.
Another change you probably noticed; he no longer touts his sword, Rebellion, on his back. By this time I’ll assume the sword is still called Rebellion since at least they didn’t change Dante’s name. But you’ll also noticed that it’s much more than a sword this time around as he changes it into a spear and then a chain while battling the figures.
In function, the new Rebellion does have an edge over the old one, but why couldn’t it sit on his back? Maybe they didn’t think it would add to his appearance. In the battle scene, he wields his guns first, and then puts them away to use his sword. In the past, Dante swaps between his weapons quickly making use of one and then the other in quick succession, instead of relying on one, and then the other. It just seems different from more stylish cut scenes of past encounters.
Summarily, it’s too early to make any consummate judgments of the game, but the change in style and overall charm is immediately noticeable and possibly pleasing to newer or gamers less versed in Dante’s travels. For the millions of fans that have been playing the series for nearly ten years, it doesn’t come as a very welcome or pleasant change. Or maybe it does. Which Dante do you like best?