Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Google+ Share on Reddit Share on Pinterest Share on Linkedin Share on Tumblr If you’ve been following DEVIL MAY CRY 5, you’ve probably heard of a new character named V. If you don’t know who V is, imagine if Kylo Ren was a stand user. Excited yet? Well, so was a huge portion of the fanbase. As the third protagonist of DMC 5, V immediately set himself apart from his peers. He’s calm, quiet, and mysterious, with a wry sense of humor. He has a love of classical music and dark poetry. His gameplay is a complete departure from the series norm, summoning demons and casting spells. All in all, he seemed like a new, engaging character, breathing life into an old franchise with his unique style and gameplay. V could have been the breakout character of the game, a new fan favorite and a staple for the series. But unfortunately, all this potential was wasted in the end. So what happened to V? What made him so disappointing? What can we learn from this? Well, let’s take a look! An Anti-Climactic Twist For DMC Warning! Massive spoilers ahead. I can’t stress enough just how much hype was behind V. From forums to articles to YouTubers, the DMC community was obsessed with the guy. And can you blame us? Just take a look at V’s trailer. Everything he says and does is shrouded in mystery. Capcom was practically begging us to come up with crazy theories about him. And it worked! Who was he? Where did he come from? Countless theories spread across the web, each interesting and insane in its own right. Some wondered if V was Lady’s sister, making him the son of the villainous Arkham. Others thought he might be Mundus himself, desperate to regain his former power. Personally, I hoped V would be an entirely new character. Maybe he was just a human with magic powers and a secret agenda? This would make him even rarer in a series full of half-demons and convoluted family trees. These were just a few of the more popular theories. It’s clear the fans were invested in this character, and Capcom was determined to “exceed” our expectations. Throughout the game, V’s mysterious nature was a constant subplot. It’s like Capcom was teasing us, priming us for a big reveal. And then, this scene happened. …That’s it? Turns out V was just the human side of Vergil trying to rejoin his demon side. Sure, plenty of people saw this coming… but that’s the problem. It wasn’t a twist at all. V may not act like Vergil, but the game is littered with obvious clues. He summons weapons as Vergil does. He shares similar taunts. His theme song is a dead giveaway. His name is V, for Sparda’s sake! For hours, I honestly thought this was a red herring. Surely the “real” twist was still coming, right? Don’t give me that smirk. You’re not fooling anyone. (Image courtesy of Capcom) But it didn’t. When the dust settled, and we found out who V really was, I couldn’t help but feel disappointed. Turning him into a fragment of Vergil is such a disappointing conclusion to his character. There’s so much you could do with him, so many directions you could take him. But as it stands, he can’t have a unique backstory or motivation because he’s just Vergil in a black wig. DEVIL MAY CRY Needs To Move Forward It’s especially frustrating because, on the whole, DEVIL MAY CRY 5 pushes the series forward. The writers introduced new characters, concluded age-old story arcs, and turned Nero into the core protagonist. Capcom isn’t afraid to shake things up, and they seem committed to evolving the franchise. That’s what makes V’s treatment so jarring to me. Capcom could have made him his own character, with his own history, with his own motivation. Instead, they took the easy way out. Oh V, We Barely Knew Ye But this “twist” is a symptom of a larger problem. I feel like V never got the character development he deserved. Now, it may seem silly to expect a character study from DEVIL MAY CRY, but follow me here. These games are driven by their charismatic protagonists. Each character has a unique aesthetic, their own comically extreme brand of “cool.” From Dante’s goofy antics to Nero’s rebellious attitude, DMC fans are just as invested in the characters as they are in the combat. V was a pitch-perfect addition to the DMC crew. His cool demeanor and goth aesthetic are a breath of fresh air for the series. Let’s face it: he’s also cute as hell. (Image courtesy of Capcom) Despite this, he never really had a moment to shine, to express himself as a unique character. For context, every DMC is full of moments that showcase just how cool, skilled, and silly the characters are. DEVIL MAY CRY 5 has a number of these moments, from Nero’s flashy intro to Dante’s random dance number. But V never really gets the star treatment until after he merges with Vergil, and at that point does it even count? It’s almost like they didn’t bother showcasing his character at all, knowing full well it would be wasted by the end. What Could Have Been And that’s a shame because there’s so much potential in V’s character. Let’s imagine for a moment that V isn’t Vergil. Imagine all the little quirks about V, and take them in your own direction in DMC. For example, V uses his demons to fight enemies, but he always finishes them off with his cane. Why? Does his cane absorb the power of his foes? Is V slowly growing stronger with each kill? What will he do with that power? One of the first bosses seems to recognize V and is confused by his presence. Why? What if V had a history with each of the bosses? Maybe he formed a pact with them to gain his powers. Maybe he helped summon the demon tree into the world. What if V caused the entire conflict and is using Dante and Nero to clean up his mess? Imagine a human man fueled by dark magic. Is he driven by a sense of remorse? Or a blind lust for power? Will he follow in the footsteps of Arkham? Or can he redeem himself? Doesn’t this already feel like a better character? Maybe you don’t like this version of V. Maybe you had a better one in mind. But the key is to give him his own identity. If a character lacks identity, he’s not a character at all. By tying V to Vergil, Capcom stripped him of individuality. Poor Execution But even if they had to go in this direction for DEVIL MAY CRY 5, they could’ve done it better. In terms of personality, V never feels like Virgil, human or otherwise. Sure, he spouts similar lines and has some familiar moves, but looking back I never got the sense that I was playing as Dante’s brother. Come to think of it, shouldn’t V look more like his human mother? Without the demonic heritage of his father, you’d expect him to look like Eva. I’ll admit, the idea of a human Vergil is an interesting one. It’s a complete inversion of the character, who despises his own humanity. But when I imagine Vergil as a human, the last thing I see is a goth kid who reads poetry. His motivations seem confused, as well. He claims he despises evil, that he feels remorse for his actions as Vergil, and that he wants to stop him before he hurts more people. But in the end, he seems driven solely by his lust for power. Is this the face of a remorseful man? (Image courtesy of Capcom) After they merge, Vergil doesn’t seem any more sympathetic than before. In the end, he only destroys the tree so it won’t interfere with his battle with Dante. He doesn’t seem to learn much from this experience. So what was the point? V should’ve been an incredible character, but in the end, he feels more like a gimmick than an actual person. We Probably Won’t See V Again In DEVIL MAY CRY But let’s say you like how V was handled. Or maybe you just enjoyed his gameplay. None of that matters because you’ll never see him again. Think about it: V is Vergil’s human-side, and Vergil probably won’t try to split himself in two anytime soon. Unless something crazy happens, V isn’t coming back. V offered some of the most unique and compelling gameplay in the franchise. He’s already become a fan favorite, and many hoped he’d become a staple within the series. But Capcom wrote him into a corner, before writing him out entirely. The Point I didn’t write this to hate on V. In fact, he’s probably my favorite character.And that’s why this is so frustrating. Capcom captured lightning in a bottle with this guy and did nothing with it. V could have brought some fresh, unique energy to the series in terms of story and gameplay. Instead, Capcom chose to waste his character on a cheap twist. I hope DEVIL MAY CRY continues to experiment with new characters, and and I hope Capcom gives them the respect they deserve.