I always remember standing in my local video game store all the way back in 2001 pondering the tough choice of Devil May Cry or Max Payne.  I asked the store assistant for her opinion and she said that I should get Max Payne, so I got Max Payne and Devil May Cry, which worked out great.  Not for my limited budget, but it would spark my love for both franchises and to this very day, in particular with the Devil May Cry series, I simply still cannot get enough.  The Devil May Cry series has been a little up and down, the original has gone down as an all-time classic, the sequel, well not so much.  This was down to the fact that it was said the game was roughly only half finished, which certainly reflected in its reception.  I mean it’s not the worst game, but it should have, could have been so much better.  Devil May Cry 3 however, was seen as a return to form for the series, bringing back the challenging gameplay from the original, but with an updated presentation and attitude with a younger Dante.

If you’re getting the feeling of déjà vu, then that’s because we’ve already seen this collection of games already release on the last generation, but we all know how Capcom loves their re-releases.  However, when it involves classic games such as these, it gives fans the perfect excuse to playthrough them again (me being one of them) or even better, bring in new fans that may have missed the previous releases in a full 1080p across all formats, sadly though, there is no PS4 Pro or Xbox One X support at this time.

The original Devil May Cry will always have a special place in my heart, it was the first in the series and above all else, it played absolutely fantastically and to be fair, it still does today.  It’s fast and frantic hack ‘n’ slash antics are as enjoyable as ever, enemy and boss designs are top-notch, so too is its camp, stylish, all nonsense artistic approach and presentation.   Devil May Cry 2 on the other hand is another matter.  As I’ve already touched upon, this game was never fully finished and the evidence of that still plagues the game today (even with the choice of two playable characters, the bother being Lucia).  Dante is his most bland from the entire series, the enemies are very unimaginative and the environments are uninspired.  In its defence, it’s still very easy to pick up and play in terms of gameplay, but unlike the original and the third outing, Devil May Cry 2 offers little difficulty challenge when compared to the other two games in this collection.

Depending on whom you ask, most might say that either the first and third games are the best in the series, I wouldn’t argue either way.  Devil May Cry 3 acting as a prequel offers a younger, cockier Dante with some quality back-story for Dante him and his brother Vergil.  On top of that, the gameplay is more refined with multiple play-style and difficulty modes, one offering a harsher checkpoint system then the other and Devil May Cry 3 is the game that benefits most of all from the HD lick of paint with its fantastic level design and inviting colours.

Personal preference aside, one of the issues that I had with this HD Collection previously releasing on PS3 and Xbox 360 is that while the in-game elements had benefited from the higher resolution, the in-game cut-scenes have not.  Well, the pre-rendered cut-scenes are fine, but the CGI cut-scenes, especially in the first game remain untouched and somewhat blurry.  Which is a shame, because seeing as this is a re-release of a HD Collection a good six years later, it would have been the perfect opportunity for Capcom to correct this or show the kind of love that was present with the Resident Evil Remasters and perhaps even re-work some of the textures.  Another annoyance is with the out-dated fixed camera.  It wasn’t really so much of an issue back in the day, but as games evolve with players expectations, having a free-camera implemented into the first two games (DMC3 has a free camera) would have done the two earliest games wonders.

Much like when it released back in 2012, the Devil May Cry HD Collection offers three fine classics (well ok, perhaps not so much the second game) and it’s a chance for fans new and old to get some of Dante when he was at his best.  However, it’s a shame that some of the issues that were present in the 2012 release have not been corrected and updated for the 2018, because if they were, this could have easily been one of the best collection of HD remasters out there.  That said, even despite it’s ever present flaws, I’m having an absolute blast playing through the Devil May Cry HD Collection and if this doesn’t get me even more hyped and prepared for the pending announcement of Devil May Cy 5, then nothing ever will.