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Devil’s Third Review

Military and melee weapons poised and at the ready, the hyper-violent Devil’s Third brings an interesting twist to the hack and slash come action shooter genre. But its clever changes of pace are often few and far between, with its choppy frame rates, sluggish AI and egregious in-game textures.

From the creator of the modernised Ninja Gaiden series Tomonobu Itagaki, alongside his team at Valhalla Game Studios, Devil’s Third challenges players to die harder with its appealing mix of slick swordplay and linear third-person shooter combat. The game is director Itagaki’s answer to one of Hollywood’s legendary movies, as not only does it combine the greatest action stars from the ’80s such as Jackie Chan, Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger in its main character Ivan,  it blends them together with killer enemies, extreme yet superfluous stunts for the wow factor, and a ridiculous yet verging on hilarious difficulty scale. And just like an ’80s action flick, its aesthetics are more than a little rough around the edges, often sporting flat and ugly textures in each area, but it doesn’t make the Wii U game any less fun to play during multiplayer maps and its single-player campaign.

Before players let themselves loose in multiplayer mode, Devil’s Third features nine missions across Asia, Europe and America throughout its story mode. Playing as former mercenary Ivan, your assignment is to eradicate the terrorist group you once swore allegiance to and tackle the oncoming chimera virus, while earning the right to both freedom and redemption.

With each mission taking place in a different area, exploration is rewarded for those with curious souls. Up to six trophies can be found within the nooks and crannies of each level, as well as nine easy-to-find instrument war trophies throughout the game. Loot lovers beware though, as Devil’s Third often plants gigantic, unnecessary areas in maps with nothing but grim surroundings. It’s this lack of interaction and in-game detail which is a real disappointment for thrill-seeking collectors.


The Asian setting is easily the prettiest and most impressive graphical art within Devil’s Third.

There are, however, moments where story mode’s layout and beauty truly shines. The spine-chillingly, creepy hospital halls and chimera-injected citizens patrolling its length throughout mission three replicate enemy Clickers’ movements from The Last of Us, while mission five’s Asian pagodas, shoji screens and blossom trees are highlighted wonderfully under the game’s moonlight effect. Devil’s Third also features some intriguing off-the-wall elements during missions to vary the monotonous shoot and slash mechanic. Players can take control of machine guns and pick off enemies one by one, shoot from the back of a helicopter, and blast through snowy fortresses inside a tank. It’s in these insanely fun moments, often coupled with pertinent music, that Devil’s Third really starts to crank up its gameplay gears.

If you’re unfamiliar with Itagaki’s previous games, Devil’s Third brings three difficulty modes to the table with casual, standard and hardcore. Depending on which mode you choose, each mission will last between one and two hours and supplies plenty of ammunition, so you can expect a fairly meaty single-player campaign. And given story mode’s variety, there are often many weapons littered on the ground.

Arming yourself with a flamethrower is particularly fun against chimera-infected hostiles, while using the rocket-propelled grenade against helicopters and some bosses can turn the battle in your favour. The game also supplies players with plenty of melee weapons, including a Katana, Machete and the Ninja Sword to name but a few. Taking down enemies in a hack and slash style will boost Ivan’s Enbaku meter and make his tattoos glow. Unleashing the Enbaku enables a near invulnerability mode, leading to devastating – and often comedic – finishing blows.


Touching legs, touching swords, touching finish. Playful fight sequences are just the best, no?

Despite the third-person shooter’s satisfying weapon choice and game mechanics, it’s awash with flaws. An incredibly choppy frame rate combined with sluggish AI can seriously hamper the mood and your in-game strategy. It’s especially apparent in smaller trench-like or sewer areas, where enemies often suffer glitches in between running and shooting, bodies miraculously vanish and then reappear above you, sticking out of a wall, or jammed between a literal rock and a hard place. And there are even times when the frame rate drops significantly between cinematic cutscenes; Ivan seemingly can’t catch a break. Plus when under heavy enemy fire, the frame rate can suffer so greatly it affects your overall weapon aim which features stiff movement, rather than a more natural, fluid motion.

Problems with the mission marker often occur too, with substantial lags between each objective. I’ve often aimlessly – and with great frustration – shot at dead hostiles in order to trigger the next objective, or even walked blindly into the next enemy camp to stimulate movement. Not only will you feel idiotic in doing so, you’ll plaster Ivan with so many bullets in the back, he’ll be walking out with a new blood-soaked tattoo. No “yippee ki yays” or a spare vest to be found around here.

In another hair-raising error, story mode will plant Ivan into enemy saturated ambushes straight off the mark. During the earlier missions, you’ll encounter Big Mouse in an overtly surreal boss fight. Not only is this fight terribly unbalanced with a boss that has no distinct pattern and a dash that outruns your own, you’ll need to obliterate 20 plus soldiers before you are inevitably blown apart. Let’s not even joke here, just sign me up for the Suicide Squad, please. No capes either.


Get to grips with the multiplayer mode in Devil’s Third, choose your weapons wisely for each map!

In stark contrast to the game’s subpar single-player campaign, Itagaki has given much care to its online multiplayer mode. Players will begin by customising their own male or female avatar as a Gunner, Assault or Sniper, equipping them with armour, camouflage and weapons with load-outs of their choosing. Weapons are only purchasable with in-game Dollen, of which you’ll be supplied with 30k at the start, while avatar gear can only be bought with rare golden eggs received at the beginning of your campaign, or from levelling up.

Golden eggs are, in fact, so rare that they can be bought with real money in the Nintendo eShop – it’s a little unorthodox to see some of the game’s biggest and best weaponry locked behind an insurmountable amount of Dollen, only purchasable if you trade one of your Golden Eggs for 100,000 Dollen or more.

Microtransactions aside, new players can only battle against others in drill matches until a certain level is reached to play in Siege. With a variety of modes from chicken catching to a steal-the-flag Transporter mode, there’s plenty on offer across a range of well-designed maps to tickle those multiplayer taste buds. For the most part, the frame rate during online matches appears to be very stable unlike during story mode, so there’s certainly less frustration when it comes to engaging with the enemy. And if you’d rather seek out achievements during matches, you can keep track of all your kills – whether it’s a headshot, long shot, your kill streak, or a revenge kill – on the Wii U GamePad, along with player statistics. There’s also an in-game chat room where you can type messages to friends as a substitute for voice chat.


Current power struggles and your faction or clan are detailed in this Siege map layout.

Of course, the real challenge in Devil’s Third is during Siege matches. You’ll need to keep your wits about you here in order to join a clan or faction, or perhaps even lead your own as a commander, wiping out an enemy clan in a fortress takeover or through contributing to your clan’s overall effectiveness by providing extra Dollen. Unfortunately, due to the rather diluted servers pre-launch, I’ve yet to sample Siege mode. And given it’s a large part of the game, it would be unfair to pass judgment upon it at this stage.

In its own right, Devil’s Third has an astute multiplayer experience and features wonderfully wacky drill matches, which are a pleasure to play. Though its single-player campaign doesn’t quite hit the mark, and clever moments are often fleeting, it’s still a worthy game for any Wii U owner. Perhaps it’s the Devil’s multiplayer charm that keeps me playing – it’s certainly not story mode’s horns.


73 thoughts on “Devil’s Third Review”

    1. That defeats the purpose of you give every Nintendo game a good score. GameSpot gave it a 3, so I’d say a 7 is generous.

        1. Then how about we use almost every other single gaming site then. Last I checked this game was sitting at 29 on metacritic.

    2. Yeah, more brainless fanboy opinions are exactly what Nintendo needs to make them face reality…

      Meh, I was never going to get this anyway.

    3. That’s why this game had good reviews from other people, but the game isn’t good like that. Besides online, the game lags worst than Majoras Mask with the 3D effect on. Saved me 60 dollars. Thanks.

    4. What the fuck are you talking about? The reviews on this site are pretty much spot-on. If you want reliable reviews, get them here. If you want bias, political bullshit, then go elsewhere.

  1. Pingback: Devil's Third - Un disastro le prime recensioni internazionali del gioco | Games 'N More

  2. I personally don’t understand how a game can get a 7/10 when so much of it has been criticized in the actual review. A 7 is literally only 3 points away from being perfect, it’s anythig but a bad score – and in my personal opinion, a game that suffers from as many technical problems as Devil’s Third seems to do, it simply can’t be so close to a perfect score, let alone when said game combines those technical problems with a seemingly mediocre story mode.
    But yea, that’s just my personal opinion on the matter, not trying to disrespect the reviewer in any way.

      1. Actually its not. There’s not even an argument to be had, just one person’s opinion. And it seems several people feel the same way.

        *has anonymous picture as avatar*
        If anything your comment is invalid.

      2. You’re so right, how could I forget that using a Final Fantasy character as my avatar doesn’t allow me to have an opinion? Such a foolish mistake. I hope you can forgive me one day… :(

    1. Well said.

      The Golden Egg thing is a huge turn off to me, that says “pay-to-win” all over it. I didn’t even know about those, I should’ve figured seeing as the multiplayer will be on PC as well.

      And honestly, since the multiplayer seems to be the only saving grace of this title, what real reason is there to buy it on the Wii U? If you already have a good PC. No reason for me, but if this has microtransactions like this in it, I would bet the PC version is going pretty bad.

      1. I don’t think anyone who hasn’t had the chance to get a copy of the game yet knew about those Golden Eggs, and the developers actually might have kept it secret on purpose – for a good reason. It’s just as you’ve said, it pretty much sounds like your everyday pay-2-win model, which might not be too appealing to potential buyers.
        That being said, I don’t see why the WiiU version would appeal to anyone at all honestly, due to the reasons you already have mentioned in your comment.

    2. strange. But the game got good reviews in Japan. Maybe the japanese version has something different from the western version…

    3. I didn’t even want to put a score on Devil’s Third in all honesty, as I thought the review would give readers enough of an idea of what the game entailed. However, it’s what’s known as a “marmite” game – you’ll love it or dislike it. Reviews will be all over the place in terms of scores, what matters is the content you read in the review, and if you believe it’s a game you will personally enjoy.

      Despite all my criticisms of the game, there were parts I did enjoy, as I stated in my review. Could I have been much more critical? Most probably. But I try to balance my reviews as much as possible and keep you guys entertained while reading. :) Either way, thanks for reading and commenting, Namie!

      1. The review is very well written imo, a really good read. I have no interest in the game itself, but I still enjoyed reading your thoughts on it.
        But despite that, what “bothered” me was that I just don’t think the final score you’ve given the game exactly reflects what was written in the actual review, as you can probably tell by my previous comment. But yea, of course I can’t tell you to be more critical or do things differently with your future reviews or anything like that, they’re your personal opinion on the games, based on how you personally have experienced them, after all, so you can rate the game just as you wish. I just expressed my opinion on your opinion, I suppose. :)

        1. Possibly not a good reflection in terms of score. And if I was basing my score on just the story mode? It would be much, much less. Multiplayer saved this game – and if there’s one draw to it, it’s that. I played the game for 20 hours – then enough was enough.
          I don’t enjoy scoring games, as I think too much pressure is put on the final score. I just enjoy reviewing them. :)
          Anyway, we have Super Mario Maker up next, so time to move on, at least for me!
          Thanks again for sharing your views, I do appreciate them. :)

          1. Call me a suck-up, but this girl is the definition of intelligent & thoughtful writing. Mad skillz and my favorite game reviewer hands down.

    4. I’m pretty sure the point of giving it a “7” is to say it’s a good game, however they didn’t want to neglect calling out it’s downfalls so we don’t come back later with, “Hey! I thought you said it was amazing!?”

      I’ve been waiting for this review a long, long time… I now have mixed feelings on the game. It might come down to how much they charge for it. *shrugs*

      1. I don’t know, after reading the review, I just don’t think it deserves 7. But yea, that’s just my personal opinion, of course.

        And about the price point of the game, it’s 60€ here on Amazon, which seems like a bad joke to me, considering that the singleplayer seems to be a huge mess, and the multiplayer, the only saving grace as Michelle put it, will be Free-2-Play on PC.
        So if you asked me, I’d say save your money, it just doesn’t seem to be worth it. If you really feel like buying a game though, you could reconsinder Splatoon and went for that one instead of Devil’s Third, hah. :)

        1. Splatoon? Nope. I’m sticking to my “guns” and not supporting it, even though it’s success will no doubt ensure Nintendo repeats what they did, I can’t support the game unless I decide to stop complaining about it. ;)

          1. Haha, understandable. :p If I had bought Splatoon for full-price at launch, I would have deeply regret it for sure. But yea, I was lucky to find a rather good deal.

            Also, to correct a silly mistake in the last phrase of my previous comment: go*, not went. :)

  3. Again, sasori is victorious and exposed the hipocrisy of nintendo and the fanboys.
    list of idiots defeated by sasori:
    4chan losers: defeated.
    encyclopedia dramatica: defeated. as their buttfriends on 4chan so much bark and no bitting lol
    queer nintendo commander: defeated
    stranga: defeated
    Nintendo is like a Cambodian mother about to smother her baby with a warm embrace of false comfort and a love for money and yum yum.
    stranga, sasori wants to see your damage control faggot
    Church of Sasori

  4. “with a boss that has no distinct pattern”… so you are saying that the boss is difficult and you can’t just do the same repetitive attack over and over… God forbid

    1. There is always a “trick” to defeat a boss. Every game. Every boss. If you’re new to gaming, I apologize.

      1. excuse me? I just quoted the article… if you’re new to reading, I apologize. Obviously there is always some way, but if this one was harder to “find”, perhaps that is a good thing.

  5. Flat and ugly textures. How I felt about the fruit boxes in Xenoblade. SOMEHOW the fucking fruit boxes in the market bothered me the most. But yeah, that was a Wii game.

    I’m sure many people will like this game but it ain’t for me. There’s other games to look forward too this year that are way more interesting imo.





  7. Most of the reviews online give it between 3 and 5 so i guess that 7/10 its a verygood score.
    Im starting to get tired of those who say that a 6, 7 or 8 arent good scores… How many 8 do you achieve on your exams assholes? A game with a five or six is a GOOD game, a game with an eight or seven is a NOTABLE game and if it has a nine or ten it is OUTSTANDING im tired of gaming scoring… If it is less than nine fanboys complain and retard people (haters) said that it is bad because of the score… Just remember how many 9 or 10 did you get on your school calification? Shut the f*ck off assh*les

  8. Personally I see this being a hit with casual gamers more than anything I can’t see hard core gamers getting this really if it get a update to gix the problems with it then I will get it but Japan likes it I heard it did sell out but who knows how under shipped it was lol

  9. It will be a buy for me. I don’t go by reviews at all. Seen plenty of 3 and 5 for games I really enjoy. Saw 10 for some games I didn’t enjoy at all. I tend to read the very few reviews that do not have a coring system or a scoring system that explains point deducted.

      1. When you work hard and budget your money well, you can buy games and not limit yourself. This is not possible for everyone but you still have to choose for yourself and not let someone else choose for you

        1. I work hard, make a decent living and manage my budget like a boss. I also have a house, a dog and a car.

          Buying every single $60-$40 dollar game is not possible. (for me) If you are buying every single game, even if it could be shit, and you can burn money like that, that’s cool. Like I said. “must be nice.” :)

          Besides. with my game backlog, I don’t even want to own every game, so I’ll continue to lean on Miiverse and a handful of trusted reviewers to save me some time and money.

          I know I’m a little rough around the edges today. It’s not you, it’s me. ;)

          1. No problem. I can’t buy every game either. I’m the pick and choose what interest me too. It’s an expensive hobby. There is so many games I need to buy. It’s harder to buy games when a wife involved too especially when she like games.

    1. This game will probably drop like rocks price wise. I mean if Splatoon dropped so fast, I can’t imagine this lasting longer.

      I do completely agree with you, Nintendo’s game sales are the worst by far.

    2. Nintendo’s 1st party games rarely go on sale but they sell 3rd party stuff for cheap all the time. Zombi U is like $13 right now.

  10. Nobody should put much stock in reviews from sites where they get paid to play for an hour and give a review. Like IGN, Gamespot and so forth. Go to Youtube and watch actual people who bought the games reviews if you want an accurate review.

    1. I would generally agree with you. However, this particular reviewer kicks ass. They put more effort into a review than most people commenting on this site put into playing the game. ;)

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  14. There’s too many games based on guns and shooting people. There’s many people in this world (who aren’t right in their minds) that are playing these games. Then they go out and shoot people for real. Games are much different than watching violent movies.

    1. This isn’t even true. You have been brainwashed by mainstream media into believing this. There is no statistical evidence WHATSOEVER to support that video game violence translates to real life violence. In fact, there is peer reviewed, scientific evidence to prove OTHERWISE.

      Do you also believe that Baltimore is a war zone right now and that Planned Parenthood is a terribly corrupt company that has been hiding out as a fetus organ black marketeer?- I’ll let you know that both of these pieces of “news” are WAY blown out of proportion in reality. Same goes for the “videogames cause real life violence” argument.

  15. Game got a 7/10. Not bad. Worth a purchase it seems.

    I’m glad I’ve always been on board with this game.

  16. To the OP, thank you for writing a real, unbiased review!! It’s good to know some people do it right. Thanks for telling the truth.

  17. What was that about a micro-transaction that sounds a lot like pay-to-win with nothing else from it but in-game currency? Well that makes me hesitant. They sure did keep that secret from us. And the single play is flawed to hell & back? *sigh* ZombiU all over again. Like that game, I’ll wait when I can either get it when it’s on sale or used.

    1. Least the pay-to-win DLC for Fire Emblem added more story to the game & allowed me to battle on new maps; same for some of the Etrian Odyssey 2 Untold: The Fafnir Knight DLC that involves a mission for a ton of money or a potion that boosts experience point gain. Not to mention the DLC for those games weren’t very expensive, either.

      If the stuff on multiplayer costs as much as the outfits costed in Ninja Gaiden 3 & you had to play the game for days straight to even afford the costumes, fuck that bullshit! I got rid of Razor’s Edge because of the bullshit prices for the alternate costumes. I’m not going through it again. ESPECIALLY if I have to pay real fucking money in order to even afford the outfits & shit.

      Exactly why I stopped donating money to fucking Gaia Online when it became nothing more than a micro-transaction kingdom where the virtual money I get for spending real money wasn’t worth the costs.

  18. Pingback: Here’s The North American Box-Art For Devil’s Third | My Nintendo News

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