What a fakk nugget of a game. Finally finished it so I can post a review. Please be advised that I'm an avid DMC fan and finished the infamous DMC3 a couple of times, so my opinion is valid.
First, let's get the good stuff out of the way: Spectacular graphics, smooth framerate, the combat is OK, some amazing fight choreographies. Done.
The bad I will bring to you in the form of a dialogue between the two lead designers. If it helps think of them as Gonad ((c) by Yahtzee) and Testy.
A: "Let's make DMC4."
B: "K. Sounds like $$."
A: "Sure is. Let's be careful not to make it too easy. We want g4m0rz-moneys and they like it rough."
B: "K, but first things first. Dante or someone new?"
A: "Dante AND someone new! Damn, I'm good."
B: "Hmm why not. How should he look, behave, talk and fight?"
A: "Exactly the same."
B: "What, really? Won't that confuse and annoy the players?"
A: "Te he, it's so devious. Let's make everything extra annoying so people play it because it's hard and not because it's good. Do you remember those special missions that allow you to earn blue orbs?"
B: "Fcourse. I never liked that when you lost energy during those missions that the damage wouldn't carry over to the normal gameplay."
A: "That's what I was thinking. Make it permanent. Oh, and if you buy something, make EVERYTHING ELSE MORE EXPENSIVE!"
B: "Excuse me?"
A: "As soon as you buy something, everything else get more expensive. Every single time you buy something."
A: "It's ingenious! So annoying. Players won't be able to plan any purchases beyond the first one. Gnahaha...!"
B: "Consider it done. I assume we include incredibly frustrating jump sequences from beyond hell with fixed, bad camera angles, respawning enemies and so on for maximum annoyance?"
A: "DO YOUR WORST! Oh, and how about enemies that have an unblockable attack while down with no tell whatsoever that disrupts your combo while you are slashing them? That should take care of those uber-gamerzz."
B: "Sounds a bit extreme and unlike DMC to me, but OK. Oh, oh, I always wanted to include a board game segment into a video game. Something where you don't have any control and it just annoys you and goes on forever with seemingly endless enemy hordes spawning again and again and again and-"
A: "Stop, I get it, I get it. Why not include it in two places, one right before the end. Make that extra annoying, like an hour or so to beat."
B: "An hour? Are you sure? Or do we now allow saves within a level when quitting the game?"
A: "Are you CRAZY? Once the g4m0r shuts down the game he has to do the whole level again. That goes without saying."
B: "What if he's right before finishing this annoying herpderp fakksheet board game level and suddenly has to quit beacuase of real life and stuff?"
A: "Well, then he would have to deal with the unfairness. He's gonna hate it, he's gonna love it. How long can the game be with our current budget?"
B: "About 9 hours."
A: "No, too short, not annoying enough. Backtrack the whole game. Make the player defeat the bosses THRICE."
B: "I'm not sure about that. It sounds very excessive, and even the most hardcore gamer hates backtracking."
A: "SILENCE! BACKTRACK! EVERYTHIIIING."
B: "You got it. Couple of things that I think you'd like."
B: "Manual saving. I know it's the new millenium, but how peed on would you be if you beat an annoying level and forgot to save especially if you are pumped up after playing, just clicked continuecontinuecontinue when in fact you'd had to go down with the cursor to manually save."
A: "Love it."
B: "The program will read Window's language and put the game in that with no option to change it whatsoever. It will take 9 button presses to quit. Oh, and the story will OF COURSE be totally bananas with no plot, people just appearing, disappearing and fighting, and the player will trudge through ♥♥♥♥y, blocky environments with no idea why he does that or where he should go next."
A: "I give you a raise."
FAKK. THIS. GAME. It is an amalgamation of some of the most HORRIBLE design choices I have ever encountered in a triple-A game. Lawd knows what shrooms the makers have fumed when they brainstormed about how the game will be. This is an insult to gamers. Play only if you absolutely cannot live without Devil May Cry, have beaten the third one countless times and cannot get into the new DmC (which I very much like, btw). DMC4 is such a soulless, lazy, uninventive and so very, very much annoying cashin of a game that it's not even fun to beat it to prove your skill.