When Devil May Cry 4 (DMC4) burst onto the scene, it introduced a new character that people believed is a legit successor to Dante. Of course, many predicted correctly that the silver hair brawler is related to the original devil hunter. However, most couldn’t guess properly how Nero is related to the Dante.
In fact, this trailer – not the original one that apperaed in E3 2005, unfortunately – drops big hints as to why many think the all-new Nero, with his Devil Arm, can replace Dante. Please ignore Vergil, he isn’t important here. While being not totally spoiler-free, Nero fights his predecessor occasionally and this indirectly signals the passing of the torch.
With just the trailer, Capcom has many expecting Nero to take centre stage. Interestingly, it’s a mixed bag of reactions with some quarters saying it’s a good move; unsurprisingly, just as many prefer Dante to be in the driver’s seat. The latter becomes the lead for DMC 4 at the halfway point, leaving Nero to his own devices. While both have equal stage-time to allow their narratives to build, many prefer just sticking with the smack-talking anti-hero. After all, it’s easy to fall back into old combo-chaining habits and fighting styles. In fact, Nero’s story took the passenger seat too in some ways.
Even if the stories of both protagonists intertwine, Dante takes the main role eventually. Even his two female leads, Trish and Lady, show up. It could be Capcom pandering to the fans; if that is the case, then it feels odd that Devil May Cry 5 has loads of Nero and a 5-seconds reveal of Old Man Dante in this trailer.
Personally, it proves that, in the end, this title cannot live without the stylish two-handed gun-toting rogue.
As for the big reveal, having the new Devil May Cry entry appear now makes sense. It’s been 13 years since the DMC 4 teaser trailer and exactly 10 years since its release. Dropping a new game for the numbered series at E3 2018 is not just a winning move, it pays homage. Such a milestone means it’s more than timely to put out a couple of big reveals. This includes showing Nero sitting in a van that clearly is a part of Dante’s business – this confirms that it’s now a family run franchise; having Old Man Dante appearing means this takes place after DMC 2; it could relate to the title design of angelic feathers over demonic bones for wings; and there’s a third shadowy figure with black hair – this character could have some relation to Lady.
As for the new look for Nero, it’s a nice touch – blue hues and a short crew cut. Obviously, it’s a throwback to Vergil. If the katana that Vergil uses makes an appearance as well, then the respectful nod to Dante’s brother is complete.
While it’s too early to make any clear guesses, here’s to hoping the story will be a 50-50 split like DMC 4. Or more Nero than Dante this time.