Not long ago, when fans got their first glimpse at what Capcom and Ninja Theory were doing with DmC: Devil May Cry - more specifically what they were doing to Dante – there was a bit of an outcry. Gamers demanded that the powers that be axe the plans they had, and, at the very least, change the look of one of the most badass demon hunters in videogamedom back to what it had been before.
Well, Ninja Theory stuck to their guns, and kept the dark-haired Dante as they envisioned him. When the game releases early next year, that will be the Dante you take control of. However, Capcom has made it quite clear that this is not to be considered “as replacement for the Devil May Cry world, but rather, an expansion of it.” Speaking to the future of the series, Hideaki Itsuno, the game’s supervising director, stated:
“If people are still interested in exploring the other world of Devil May Cry that exists, we’re happy to go back to that as well.”
While the team working on the game is very excited about showing off what they’ve created, they also want to make it clear that nothing they have done is necessarily permanent. Or, as Itsuno put it:
“Opening one door does not mean that another has to close automatically. We are leaving all options on the table, so to speak.”
Basically, Ninja Theory is hinting at the possibility of returning the series to its roots in the future, if it turns out that that’s what the fans want to happen. While I applaud a developer taking fan input into account, my question would be: if your plan has become to just revert the franchise back to what it was, what exactly is the point of DmC?
DmC is supposed to be a parallel to the existing series: occurring in an alternate universe where Dante emerged with hair black as coal instead of white as snow. While that allows Ninja Theory to experiment with the Devil May Cry property, it also has the potential to make anything that happens in the game’s story completely non-canon. Should they choose to go back to the previous Devil May Cry universe, anything they set up in DmC could be completely disregarded. ‘Parallel universe’ is almost as bad as ‘it was all a dream’ as far as deux ex machinas go.
Should that happen, it would effectively be as though this game didn’t take place. I suppose if you’re a hardcore fan of the original series, then this is good news for you. But at the very least, wait until the game drops on January 15th to make your final decision. It could be that this new entry outdoes anything that Devil May Cry has done before.