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The Complete List of Devil May Cry Games in Chronological & Release Order

Dante promo shot

The Complete List of Devil May Cry Games in Chronological & Release Order

The story of the Devil May Cry series is an epic one. The series, which is now 22 years old, nearly didn’t exist. It started as a new Resident Evil game and, through an accident, morphed into its own game with its own style. Since then, the series has grown into six major releases, comics, anime, and novels. Plus, it spurred a whole legion of other popular games following in its style. Without knowing anything else about the series, it already sounds like a story worth looking into. Add to that Devil May Cry’s standard setup of a dark, stylish, demon-hunting hack-and-slash game, and there’s no denying its draw. 

The Basics

The Devil May Cry games are mostly Capcom creations, with Hideki Kamiya, a former director of the company having a big hand in most of the development of the games. The games are 3D third-person adventures with horror seeping in. They follow demon hunter Dante, who is on a quest to avenge members of his family killed by demons. The games stand out from other similar releases because of the addition of Style. 

Dante and the other protagonists of the games use combinations of close combat and guns, with Dante being known for his dual pistols. One of the abilities in the games, Devil Trigger, allows you to take a demon form with enhanced speed, strength, and abilities that allow for even more creative demon battling. 

Style Counts

While slaying legions of demons, you are graded for your style. The more creative, the better the grade and rewards as you progress through levels and stories. This aspect of the game created the need for more like, and Devil May Cry-inspired games like Bayonetta and God of War have certainly come through with their own versions. 

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The Whole Story

The Devil May Cry games are all reasonably similar in their gameplay, so the format is familiar. The story and main characters, though, are not all the same and are not in chronological order. In addition, to get the whole story, you’ll want to watch Devil May Cry: The Animated Series, released in 2007. It is part of the canon and takes place story-wise between Devil May Cry and Devil May Cry 2. In the case of The Devil May Cry games, fans argue over what order to play the games in. Since they weren’t released chronologically, below is a list of all the Devil May Cry games in that story-based order. 

DmC: Devil May Cry

Dante from DmC reboot promo shot

DmC, released in 2013, may be the franchise’s most unique or out-of-the-ordinary game. It is a reimagining of the first game released in 2001. Therefore, it is not actually part of the same timeline as the rest of the games in the franchise. Though much of the game feels familiar, DmC stands alone in its alternate timeline when it comes to continuity. The game isn’t exactly a reboot, but it feels like one. Its developer, Ninja Theory, is different from the other Devil May Cry games, and you can tell the game is an attempt at something different. It debuted from the studio on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC.

DmC is a single-player third-person hack-and-slash game like the other major releases, and you still play as Dante. This time, though, Dante looks much different as the studio makes Dante a bit more Westernized in this installment. While the story isn’t the best of the series, the game still gets a lot of appreciation for its stunning visuals and fun gameplay. Dante’s design contrasting the gameplay has new and old fans split on this standalone entry. 

The story centers around Dante teaming up with his brother Vergil and a woman named Katy to stop the big bad in Limbo City. The villain, Arius, controls the humans there using demonic powers, so the task is right up Dante’s alley. The game gives you new and old weapons to battle with and introduces a new variation of the camera not used in previous Devil May Cry games.

Devil May Cry 3: Dante’s Awakening 

Dante’s Awakening is the first game chronologically in the series. It debuted in 2005 from developer Capcom for the PlayStation 2. It eventually expanded its availability and is now playable on Windows, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch. The game is again a mostly single-player hack-and-slash and puzzle-solving adventure starring Dante. Sometimes the game allows a second player to play using a second character with limited abilities, a first in the series. 

It serves as a direct prequel to the first Devil May Cry, taking place ten years before. It stars a younger and more rambunctious Dante. In this early tale, the demon hunter is on a quest to stop his twin brother Vergil, who wants to unite the demon and human worlds.

This game is said to be the most difficult of the series and challenging in general. The gameplay is also much more ramped up than other entries. The combination of gore, switching between Devil Arms and guns, and a stronger emphasis on Style makes this game an exciting and standout play-through. The game introduces the ability to choose a Style of play to enhance combat and Style-earning capabilities. This feature remains a staple of the franchise in future installments.

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Dante’s Starting Styles:

  • Royalguard (Defense)
  • Swordmaster (Melee)
  • Trickster (Dodging)
  • Gunslinger (Distance)

Devil May Cry 

The original game in the series debuted from Capcom in 2001 for PlayStation 2. This second game chronologically takes place ten years after Devil May Cry 3. The game took the world by storm with its stunning graphics and emphasis on Style while fighting enemies with blades and guns. The Style system remained a consistent aspect of the franchise after its success in this first entry and its impact on the gaming world. Devil May Cry is a trendsetting single-player third-person action adventure with horror aspects. 

This story centers around demon hunter Dante being once again called into action by a request for help from a woman named Trish. She lets Dante know that the demon Mundus, who killed members of Dante’s family, is returning, and Dante has a chance for vengeance. Dante wielding his signature dual pistols, sword, and red jacket, heads out on a hack-and-slash quest filled with stylish combos and kills. The story features 23 missions, the most in a single game in the franchise. 

Devil May Cry 2

Devil May Cry 2 Lucia promo screenshot

A few short or long years later, depending on how long it took you to finish Devil May Cry, in 2003, the sequel dropped. Devil May Cry 2 hoped to grab the same success and admiration as the first but didn’t use all the same pieces. Hideki Kamiya, a major creative force behind the first game, was not involved in this title’s development. Capcom Production Studio 4, who developed the game, is also an extension of Capcom and not the same creative team from the first game. The game was initially released on PlayStation 2 but later opened to PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PC, and Nintendo Switch. 

This game is another Dante adventure that takes play after the conclusion of the first. It stars Dante teaming up with Lucia and her mother, Matier, against a businessman wielding demonic power with his sights set on the world. In the story, we learn that Matier fought alongside Dante’s legendary demon-hunter father in the past. 

In the game, you play as Lucia or Dante in a third-person action hack-and-slash style story. Though the Style aspect, Devil Trigger, and other aspects are still the same, the game’s controls are much different than the first game. Overall the game is considered the easiest of The Devil May Cry series. The darker tone, repetitive and less challenging play, and deviation from the beloved first game make this title somewhat disappointing

Devil May Cry 4

The 2008 fourth release in the series followed up on the success of Dante’s Awakening. This time, the Capcom developed game released on multiple consoles right from the start. This choice is a clear marker of the franchise’s success, with the game being simultaneously available for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Windows. Later still, in a Special Edition, the game opened up to PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and an iOS version. The game returns from the prequel storyline in Dante’s Awakening to the present day and introduces new playable characters.

The plot surrounds Nero, a new demon battler from the Order of the Sword. You will control him on his quest to hunt down Dante after Dante kills the leader of Nero’s order. In the game, you get to play as both Nero and Dante, both heroes in their own right. Nero, who is similarly cocky and skilled, is a fan favorite in the franchise. Both players use guns and melee to battle the demon hordes. 

Much of the gameplay is similar to Dante’s Awakening as players slash their way through enemies. Nero brings an interesting new ability to the game with his Devil Bringer, a metal arm he wears. This weapon allows him to grab enemies from a distance, throw them into the air, or slam them into the ground. This power is obviously another chance for more combos and Style points. Dante plays similarly to his previous versions, with four Styles to choose from to help match your preferred playing style. 

Devil May Cry 5

In 2019, Devil May Cry 5 dropped on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. The game developed by Capcom Dev 1 is the most recent actual release in the series. It is the sixth game released and the fifth in the timeline. It occurs five years after Devil May Cry 4 and features Nero, Dante, and a new character battling demons. The game is once again a third-person hack-and-slash adventure, but the stakes in the story are even higher this time. 

The game begins with Nero losing the Devil Bringer to a mysterious stranger. From there, it is off on an adventure with Dante and newcomer V to try and stop the demon king, Urizen. 

The game follows similar gameplay to its predecessors, with the addition of multiple playable characters present in the story. There are many firsts yet also notable familiar favorites from other games incorporated in this installment. One addition is V, a unique playable character whose primary ability is to control multiple demons you will use as weapons. Classic villains and Dante’s use of his sword are welcome returns as well.

This game again splits fans as many of them enjoy the gameplay yet don’t enjoy the deviations from other games. One example is that the story has multiple endings, which is unique to this game. Despite some fans’ feelings, the game won a “Best Action Game” award, and a Special Edition is now available.

Devil May Cry: Peak of Combat 

Devil May Cry Peak of Combat promo image

This entry is for the yet-to-be-released mobile game. Its developer is Nebulajoy, and though it has an entry in the app store, it is not available to play yet. From the trailers and news stories, it seems that the game connects to the prequel game Devil May Cry 3: Dante’s Awakening. This association would put it chronologically between Awakening and Devil May Cry

Developers describe the game’s aim as a way the experience a Devil May Cry game on a mobile device. It will star Dante and Lady as playable characters. Lady is a demon hunter who first appears in Devil May Cry 3. While centered around the third game, there will also be aspects of other Devil May Cry installments present. It still needs to be confirmed whether the game will be canon or not. 

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Devil May Cry Release Order

  • Devil May Cry (2001
  • Devil May Cry 2 (2003)
  • Devil May Cry 3: Dante’s Awakening (2005)
  • Devil May Cry 4 (2008)
  • DmC: Devil May Cry (2013)
  • Devil May Cry 5 (2019)
  • Devil May Cry: Peak of Combat (2023?)
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