Review by Zauron

Reviewed: 01/29/03 | Updated: 02/20/03

Disappointing to fans of the first

I can barely believe I'm saying this. I'd heard some negative comments about the game, but I just thought they were viewing it the wrong way or something. I mean, this is DMC2! Have you seen the trailers?? This game should ROCK! DMC was one of the best game EVER! And this one let's you run up walls, shoot 2 enemies at once, and has a cool second character - there's no WAY it could be that bad.

I was told it had a worse story... Eh, so what, never cared much either way. Also that it was too easy... Well, if that's true, I'll just beat it and try Dante Must Die mode, that should be at least as challenging as normal on DMC1. Reviewers mentioned bad camera problems... Meh, I've dealt with that before and enjoyed other games. I'm enough of a fan of DMC that whatever its faults, it's okay because killing enemies DMC style is FUN no matter what the story and graphics and stuff! Right...?

So I bought it...

And I am very disappointed. The new dev team that did this version somehow managed to screw it up. Yeah, it's cooler looking and there's more moves, but it doesn't play well at all compared to DMC. Remember buying new moves? Not here, you just make your swords or guns do more damage instead. And they don't even look different when you upgrade them. No motivation to get more red orbs. There's also no Ifrit gauntlets for Dante, just some generic swords. But these aren't really my complaints, I could look past things like that.

My complaint is that they took out the thing that made DMC great - the smooth flow of guns to sword and back, and really being able to juggle your enemies in multiple ways for some stylish combos. In this game, there's guns or there's the sword. Pick one. There's no smooth flow. Remember in DMC1 how you could knock an enemy in the air, juggle it with some gun shots, then do a high tide jump slash in the air to hit the enemy again, shoot it a few more times in mid air, then jump off the enemy while it's still hovering next to you, shoot it a few more times and drop down in a drop slash? Then if he's not dead quickly whip out a stinger to finish him off? (That is, if you're good...) I mean that was just COOL! And remember how awesome it was when you learned how to dodge or block Nelo's attacks and get him in the back with a multi-stab combo while DT'd? And you know if someone saw you they'd think you were truly elite? Well forget all that!

For example, when you start to use the guns in mid air, you sort of float up for a bit then start shooting them while you drift down, aiming straight ahead of you! If you try to jump up with an enemy while knocking them in the air then shoot your guns, they'll be back on the ground before any of your shots hit. And it makes no sense how Dante hovers like that - in DMC1 he was shooting downward at the enemy so the recoil from the guns was slowing your decent. You could see that each individual shot kind of pushed upwards on him a bit. But in this one, he just floats downward at a nice steady pace like he's got a balloon tied to him or something. It doesn't seem at all linked to what his guns are doing. And why does he float upwards for a brief second when you first push the gun button before he even fires a shot? It's just stupid looking.

Also that rain bullets move where he's hanging upside down - it is constantly doing that when I don't want it to, because the enemy I'm locked on to is right freakin' in front of me in the air! Why am I using a lock-on feature on an enemy in the air and doing a move that makes me shoot straight downward? I'm told I should only shoot after a single jump if I don't want to do that move - that's just an excuse for bad game design. I have the guy targeted and locked on, it should automatically do the ''shoot the guy'' move and not the ''shoot at the ground when there's nothing there'' move! Is Dante an idiot now? Why did I bother locking on to this enemy? And what if they are, say, really high? I mean with this crappy camera, I have to double jump just to see what I'm shooting at! This is just an example of the poor gameplay you have to hassle with in this game.

Another complaint is that Dante's sword moves are slower and don't flow together nearly as well as in the first game. I don't like his new combos much, and I preferred the delay-the-button-press method instead of the press-a-direction-at certain-points method for doing them.

The bosses are lame, no strategy, you just jump around and shoot them. Or walk up and slash them. Makes no difference. No finding a weak spot like Phantom, or learning to dodge and counter like Nelo Angelo. Just shoot it until it dies. Can't even remember their names, they just don't leave enough of an impression. I literally caught myself yawning in boredom during a boss fight once.

And of course all the other complaints ARE valid - story makes no sense, cut scenes are lame, there's hardly any voice acting at all, the bosses have no personality, voices, or anything to make you give a crap about them, and the camera angles really DO stink. Even the interface is worse. It's not as easy to see what your DT gauge and life bars are at. It's full of typos and even outright wrong information (some moves tell you to push the wrong button to do them)!

Graphically, yeah I'd say it's better than the first DMC. Sound - about the same I guess, although Dante sounds different and isn't an improvement in my book. I think I already covered the controls and gameplay. If you liked DMC1, there's really no guarantee you'll like this one. It's like a different game altogether except for the name and the main character, and even he's a lot different.

This is definitely a rent-before-you-buy title. It's an above-average action game, but it pales in comparison to its predecessor. If you've never played DMC1, go ahead and give this one a try (or better yet, go get DMC1...). If you have, be warned, it's a much different game and just because you liked the first doesn't mean you'll like this one.

Rating:   3.0 - Fair

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