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iPhone  header logo

Devil May Cry 4 refrain

For: iPhone

Dante's inferno

Product: Devil May Cry 4 refrain | Developer: Capcom Mobile | Publisher: Capcom Mobile | Format: iPhone | Genre: Action | Players: 1 | Networking: wireless (network) | Version: US | App version: 1.00.00
 
Devil May Cry 4 refrain iPhone, thumbnail 1
If action games are a dance, then Devil May Cry 4 refrain is the basic two-step.

This plain action game offers button-mashing antics that feel like the first steps to a more sophisticated routine that never plays out. It's a decent beginning, but not enough to make your two thumbs tango.

Issues with the controls, which reinforce the limited nature of the action, combined with a general lack of polish yield a game that is only mildly enjoyable.

Half and half

When you consider that Devil May Cry 4 refrain summarises a much larger, more robust console game, its brevity and basic nature make sense. Along with a condensed script, features have been cut and mechanics tweaked for a more accessible, more basic mobile action game.

As the half-demon, half-human Nero you're drawn into a war to prevent demons from destroying humanity. In other words, you're tasked with kicking demon butt. Through the ten-mission story, you jam on three action buttons to slice, shoot, and slam demons out of existence. Plot plays a bit part, ceding the spotlight to action - insane aerial moves, bullet showers, and fanciful grabs with a magical gauntlet.

A nicely tuned virtual analogue stick handles movement, while a set of buttons in the lower-right correspond to Nero's handguns, sword, and Devil Bringer gauntlet (a simplified control scheme condenses handguns and sword into a single button). There's also a 'jump' button, although it's rarely needed.

Mealy combo

The setup is solid, though the gameplay never moves beyond the basics. Each short mission consists of samey button-mashing action punctuated by bland boss battles and the occasional obvious puzzle. It doesn't help that the controls are inadequate to the task of delivering dynamic action.

Executing combos - a key part of the Devil May Cry experience - is awkward. The lack of a targeting system causes problems, particularly when the game confuses an order to move toward an enemy and attack as a combo. Too often you do a rising slash instead of approaching an enemy for an attack.

Most surprising is that the abilities to evade and block - two fundamental abilities in any fast-moving action game - are missing. Instead, it's all about attack, attack, attack.

Overture, not reprise

Without a manageable combo system and basic defensive maneouvres, Devil May Cry 4 refrain has difficulty moving beyond the basics. Halfway through the game, it feels as though you're still playing through a tutorial.

A general lack of polish furthers the disappointment. The graphics are merely passable - unsatisfying in their muddiness when played on a high-definition iPhone 4 or fourth-generation iPod touch. Static dialogue scenes can't always be forwarded. There's nothing to purchase with the souls you collect from defeated enemies.

While it's understandable that not everything from a console game can be packed into a portable release, Devil May Cry 4 refrain strips things down too much. The essentials - exciting action, interesting boss battles, slick visuals - just aren't here.
 
Devil May Cry 4 refrain
Reviewer photo
Tracy Erickson | 3 February 2011
Devil May Cry 4 refrain is too basic to be anything more than mildly enjoyable, its lack of depth, excitement, and polish preventing the delivery of a more satisfying experience
 
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Anonymous | 13:44 - 4 February 2011
Actually there IS an evade skill (->->+jump)in the game next time check skill list before writing nonsense (btw the only real block skill belongs to Dante in the original game). On the other hand it doesnt change the fact that it is almost unusable and with good play unneccessary. Also the rising slash is a feature not a bug as in the console game you had to move the stick backwards compared to wherever your opponent was so think of it as easy combo chaining. However I was disappointed too because of the swallowness. Im at the 8th lvl, credo down and no devil trigger and still only combo a to use.
Joined:
Dec 2008
Post count:
1340
klouud | 11:01 - 4 February 2011
Just get the console version for XBox360 used @ $10 and call it a day.

tim
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