Devil May Cry HD Collection Review


Is it just me? Or does it seem like every PS2 game, no matter its popularity, is getting HD remakes these days? God of War, Metal Gear Solid, Sly Cooper, Ico/Shadow of the Colossus, the list goes on and on. I'm not complaining mind you, I'm just noticing the trend. Anyhow, the latest franchise to get the HD treatment is Capcom's Devil May Cry. The games themselves have been out for years, so I'll be mainly focusing on the HD upgrades (or lack thereof) in this review. Let's get started.

Just a quick overview first: Devil May Cry (parts 1, 2 and 3) tells the story of half-demon monster hunter Dante and his evil half-brother Virgil. The third-person action series garnered TONS of praise in the PS2 era, and the titles remain strong to this day. Um, well, Devil May Cry 2 is usually the standard by which bad sequels are measured (I just used the comparison in the Ninja Gaiden 3 review). So maybe that game didn't get much praise, but parts 1 and 3 sure did. Their quality makes up for part 2's missteps when presented as a collection like this one, but I'd guess the red-headed stepchild of Dante's universe will get the least attention.

Unfortunately, the franchise's upgrade to HD is a mixed bag. Some animations and character models have been spruced up quite nicely (part one is the oldest, and therefore the most improved), but others feel like the developers forgot they were in the game. It's extremely jarring when backgrounds come up low-rez, and seeing certain untouched animations in full HD makes them even less forgivable. The weirdest part is the menus. They remain untouched from the original games, which means they are in 4:3 instead of 16:9 (like the rest of the game), and they look simply HORRIBLE on a decent HD set. I know its only the menus and it isn't that big a deal, but seeing it for the first time is so strange I felt I had to include it.

As a collection, Devil May Cry gets about a C+. The HD upgrade is slapdash and inconsistent, the second game still kinda sucks and certain gameplay elements, like finding keys a la Resident Evil 2, are beyond dated, but overall the games hold up well. It's also worth mentioning that this collection will be the first time Xbox gamers have had access to the franchise. If you've played these games to death, you should probably go ahead and skip this one. But if you've never spent any time blasting enemies out of the air and cleaving them in twain as Dante, go get this collection now.

Final Rating: 88%. The HD remastering parade marches on...