Devil May Cry 5 was one of the most popular games at TGS 2018, and director Hideaki Itsuno, who has kept the role since taking over as director for Devil May Cry 2, talked about the new character V, the return of Dante, and Nero’s Devil Breaker in an interview with Eurogamer.
Here are some highlights from the interview, starting with talk about the new character V:
Eurogamer: A good starting point would be what’s just been revealed at TGS. V’s a new character – what can you tell me about him?
Hideaki Itsuno: V, he’s the third playable character. We saw him in the trailer – from a story perspective, he’s your new client. He’s the kind of impetus in the game. In terms of gameplay, he plays completely different from Nero and Dante. He doesn’t have a sword, he doesn’t have guns. He has a cane and a book… How does he fight with that stuff? We can’t wait to have people to look into that.
He can just read stories to his enemies until they fall asleep? Also, he’s got nothing to do with Vergil, right?
Hideaki Itsuno: You make a great point, there’s all kinds of stuff on the internet, some people are saying is it Vergil, maybe he’s someone’s son. You see all these different theories. We don’t want to spoil it!
On Devil May Cry 5’s photo-real look
You’re on the RE Engine now – you’re obviously a very stylised game but there are these photoreal faces, and when it comes to something like Resident Evil you see something like Resident Evil 7 uses a lot of real-life references. Was that something you were doing with DMC 5 – and when it comes to characters like Dante that people have known and loved for years, how do you go about doing that photo-real look?
Hideaki Itsuno: I’m happy that you feel it works from a photo-real perspective. That’s something we worked really hard at. The way we approached it, we took some of those characters and we did some location scouting in London. We thought if we were going to make a city that was going to look a bit like London, what does it look like? We got a bunch of pictures, we all went and experienced it. We came back, and we approached it thinking let’s design these characters so that they wouldn’t feel out of place in a realistic city like that. If you saw Dante, you saw Nero in that city, it wouldn’t feel like they were filming some kind of low budget TV show, it didn’t feel like some kind of toy.
We approached the design from that kind of perspective – the colours, they shouldn’t feel cheap, they need to feel realistic. Even the accessories and stuff – they need to feel like something you’d see in the real world, so we spent a lot of time on that.
On the return of Dante and how he has evolved and changed:
Dante’s playable here at TGS – how has he evolved, how has he changed?
Hideaki Itsuno: With Dante, when we approached evolving things with characters, we felt that taking stuff away tends to upset people. So we tried to approach it from not taking stuff away – let’s try and add stuff, and add stuff that’s in the spirit of what everyone loves. With Dante, he has more weapons this time than he does in DMC 4. The interesting challenge there – for people who are really used to playing as Dante will be able to switch between three and four weapons on the fly, switch between multiple ranged weapons with one button and between multiple melee weapons with another button.
For some players that might be a little overwhelming. The big evolution with Dante, it’s giving people the choice. If they want they can have load-outs for their equipment. Do I want all slots filled and cycle between those weapons? Maybe I just want two weapons, maybe I just want Cavalier and Rebellion and that way switching between them is super easy, it’s just one button press, or maybe they want four but they want them in a specific order. Oh, and there’s another big thing about Dante but that’s a spoiler so I don’t want to talk about it yet…
On Nero’s Devil Breaker:
You say you don’t want to take anything away, but you’ve got the ammo system for Nero’s Devil Breaker – you don’t always have access to your full arsenal and have to scout for consumables. Is that a concern, or are you happy with how it works?
Hideaki Itsuno: At the beginning, we had a lot of people in the team fighting over it. Should you be able to change your Devil Breaker whenever you want or not? Our answer became ‘no’, because Nero and Dante need to play differently – they can’t do the same thing. We wanted to introduce, for the first time in Devil May Cry, consumable weapons. With any luck, that introduces a new element of gameplay when you’re playing with Nero. You have to strategise – okay, this is what I have in my roster, and this is the order you’re in (which you can customise), but it’s got to feel different to Dante. With Dante you can change whatever you want on the fly, and that’s fine. With Nero you’ve got the Blue Rose and you’ve got the Devil Breakers.
At one point in development we thought that maybe the Devil Breakers should have different moves depending on which one you had, and you had to do command inputs. But we decided the Devil Breaker should be this simple thing, and the move itself depends on what situation you’re in. So Overture, you shoot up this big electric hand. If the enemy’s above you you’ll do it above you automatically, if they’re on the ground it’ll be on the ground. It should be this kind of thing where it’s less to think about. It’s more about here are my two things, how best do I use those.
You can read the full interview over at Eurogamer.
Devil May Cry 5 releases on March 8, 2019 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. Check our previous report for the latest details from TGS 2018 with info on how Dante was designed to have more weapon freedom as well as free-flowing hair.