Ninja Theory on DMC: “What was cool” in the past “isn’t cool any more”

Wednesday, 22 September 2010 09:53 GMT By Johnny Cullen

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Didn’t like the new look to Dante in last week’s DMC reveal? Don’t worry: it’s all within reason, according to Capcom and developer Ninja Theory.

Ninja Theory creative design boss Tameem Antoniades said the essence of DMC’s look is “all about cool.”

“It’s about Dante being cool and making you feel cool when you’re playing it, and so the combat and the style system and everything is integral to that,” Antoniades told 1UP.

“But, you know, what was cool 12 years ago – I think that was when the first game came out [It actually came out nine years ago for PS2 - JC] – isn’t cool any more.

“If Dante, dressed as he was, walked into any bar outside of Tokyo, he’d get laughed out.

“What Devil May Cry did when it launched was it brought everything that was great about action cinema like the fashion, music – it was like a cultural melting pot – and I feel like now, for Devil May Cry to have that same impact, it needs to draw on new things.

“New music, new ways of cinematography, new fashion.”

There was a strong reaction to DMC’s character design last week, with many being heavily critical of Dante’s emo look.

Original DMC creator Hideki Kamiya instantly came out against the series reboot, but Antoniades said he likes Kamiya’s effort since, the Platinum-developer Bayonetta.

Nearly.

“I love the game. I think it’s awesome. It’s taken everything – it’s just gone to a total extreme.

“But in terms of, ‘Do I think it’s cool?’ No, not at all. I think it’s caricatured and over-the-top and very ‘Japanesey,’ and for that absurd style it does that really well, but that’s not what I want.”

The new art style has been worked on for the past year, with the story only being worked on now.

Smells like teen angst

Capcom US producer Alex Jones added that some of the proposed designs for Dante’s younger version were far more extreme than the final cut.

“We had a shirtless version of Dante, with just suspenders. That went nowhere,” Jones told Kotaku.

“It looked like he had just stumbled out of a Clash concert. That was as far out as Ninja Theory went with the character design.

“When [Keiji] Inafune saw it he said, ‘I don’t think so.’”

While the game will be something of an origin story for Dante, Jones added the reboot was needed to make “the game relevant to the current times.”

“Look at the Dark Knight,” said Jones. “That went from the Gothic fun house of the earlier Batman movies, to a fairly dark look at Chicago crime today.

“We want to update and mature the tone of Devil May Cry.”

There’s no date yet, but it’ll be available for PS3 and 360.

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