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January 27, 2005
Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price
25/3/2005THQCapcom1$99.95

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Just testing the weapons.
The first Devil May Cry was a fantastic game. It was hardcore action at it's best with unrelenting enemies and absolutely sensational gameplay. Unfortunately Devil May Cry 2 was a major disappointment - probably one of the biggest in the history of the PS2. The game was short (well under 5 hours), lacked excitement, and brought next to nothing to what was touted as Capcom's greatest new series since Resident Evil. Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening looks set to bring glory back to the series with a promised return to everything that made the first game so great. One of the most interesting aspects of this title is that Capcom are developing a prequel in setting and story.

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Using the shotgun.
Several thousand years have passed since the demon warrior Sparda raised his sword against the unholy world to save the human race. Victorious and assured that evil forces had been confined, Sparda joined mankind and fathered Dante, a half human-half demon son infused with the power of a supernatural lineage. However, Dante was not the only son Sparda had sired. As devoted as Dante was to defeating the forces of evil, his twin brother, Virgil, was consumed by power and upheld the legacy of his sinister ancestors. One moonlit night, a mysterious tower materialized beside Dante's "Devil May Cry" investigative agency. On the rooftop stood his brother along with his inhuman minions goading Dante into a confrontation.

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It's Dante.
One of the key changes in Devil May Cry 3 is the different styles of gameplay which you can select including short-range, long-range, defensive or evasive styles. Not only are there different styles but you will be able to combine them and instantly switch between weapons for greater effect. In fact Dante will now be able to carry up to four weapons at a time including handguns, shotguns, swords, and an all new deadly guitar. Once again the game will feature orbs to be collected which can then be used to upgrade weapons and health.

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Virgil and Arkham...
Graphically while the second game used a modified version of the engine from the first Devil May Cry this third game uses an entirely new engine built from scratch. The detail is quite amazing, the texturing is superb and the effects stunning. For me, however it's the enemies that will make this game special. Their design is stunning. Some of the enemies tower over Dante while at other times the screen is literally filled with demonic enemies to be dispatch post haste. Even Dante looks refreshing as he appears as his younger self (this being a prequel it makes sense I guess!) The cut-scenes also deserve mention as they will now be made using the in-game graphics engine - but we can still expect some stunning CG in places. Apparently Capcom will be placing short movies to start the levels, and also a the completion - much better then the odd movie in Devil May Cry 2.

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The enemies are impressive.
God I hope Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening is everything that the second one should have been - that is, as good as the first game with some new moves and better storyline. Fortunately everything Capcom has been saying points in this direction and with several new gameplay elements such as the different styles of attack there should be plenty of variety to suit all gamers. Capcom certainly know that if they stuff up this third game then they have destroyed what could become one of the best game series' in the current era. With that in mind I don't think there's a chance in hell that Capcom will release another poor title. With a late March release in PAL territories including Australia we won't have long to see how they've gone, but my money is on a winner.