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Dante, not as you know him.
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Devil May Cry 2 is a Stylish Action Hack and Slash action game for the PlayStation 2, developed and published by Capcom in 2003. A sequel to the hit Devil May Cry, it's set on the island of Vie de Marli (originally known as Dumary Island) and centers on a stoic Dante, veteran demon hunter, and a mysterious redheaded woman named Lucia as they fight to stop the Uroboros corporation and its CEO, Arius, from reviving the demon king Argosax.

This game was the first in the series worked on by Hideaki Itsuno (who would go on to direct the rest of the games in the main series) and introduced many mechanics that would be refined and expanded upon in later DMC games, such as an evasive action or a Real-Time Weapon Change button, as well as the Bloody Palace gauntlet.

There's also a Light Novel published in 2003 which serves as a prequel to the game.

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This game is also a part of the Devil May Cry HD Collection featuring upgraded resolutions of HD 720p (for PS3 and Xbox 360) or HD 1080p (for PS4 and Xbox One) and other optimizations. Achievements and Trophies were also added.

It was followed up in 2005 by Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, and chronologically followed by Devil May Cry 4.


This game and its spin-offs contain examples of:

  • Action Girl: Lucia is the first example of this in the entire franchise. She gets her own campaign and is also a capable demon hunter just like Dante.
  • Adaptation Distillation: One can somewhat call it this way from a translation perspective in regards to the prequel novel, as several lines present in the original Japanese aren't used in Tokyopop's versions.
  • Airborne Mook: Puias and Flambats just love to fly around, but are easily dispatched off by shooting at them. The former are harpy-like demons, while the latter are flaming bat-like spirits.
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  • All Swords Are the Same: In addition to his default Rebellion, Dante can obtain a BFS (Vendetta) and a fencing sword (Merciless), but only the look and damage differ; the combos are exactly the same. The same goes for Lucia's blades.
  • All Your Powers Combined: Argosax's first form is a pile of flesh and blood composed of pieces from Phantom, Griffon, Orangguerra, Jokatgulm, Nefasturris, and Furiataurus. Each demon will fire its signature attack at Dante if the hunter is within their line of sight.
  • Ambiguous Gender: The Despair Embodied is said to be a he, but it can't seem to make up its mind on which sex it wants to be. It changes depending on the current weapon: whip is female, sword is male.
  • Anachronic Order: Though it was the second game released, it originally took place long after 3, 1, and 4, due to the game's poor reputation. It wasn't until Devil May Cry 5 when Capcom dared to put any entries after this one, and when they did, they also rearranged things to make 2 take place before 4.
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: Beating the game on lower difficulties just scores you a new outfit for your character.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Mission 15 requires the player to defeat a set number of enemies within two minutes to progress. The enemies become weaker with each failed attempt.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Trish's Nightmare-γ, when charged, fires a swarm of pinballing Frickin' Laser Beams in every direction. Every direction but straight at the enemy, which means that, considering that areas where you fight enemies underwater a huge, there's a non-zero chance that none of the pinballing projectiles actually hits anything.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning: Played with. Sickened by Arius' delusions of grandeur, Dante "crowns" him by riddling his body with bullets.
  • Backtracking: The Uroboros building has sections requiring this method, but those were the well-done "environment change" versions of the trope.
  • Badass in Distress: Lucia is perfectly capable in-game, but has to be rescued by Dante from explosions in cinematics twice. She also doesn't accomplish much without Dante, being captured by Arius and staying behind while he enters the portal to Hell. She does, however, kill Arius when he returns as a demon.
  • BFS: Dante's Vendetta and Merciless swords. The former is about as broad as Dante's shoulders, while the latter is as long as Dante's height.
  • Bishōnen Line: Argosax is introduced as a grotesque amalgamation of the other bosses' bodies, but upon taking some damage, he morphs into a more powerful humanoid form known as The Despair Embodied. More specifically, Argosax's Chaos form appears to be a cocoon/shell for his true appearance.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Dante destroys Argosax, but is trapped in the Underworld with apparently no way out, so he rides deeper in on a motorcycle that happened to be there. Lucia, meanwhile, finally comes to terms with her Dark and Troubled Past and is the one to kill Arius for good. But when Lucia finds out Dante's coin is a Two-Headed Coin, she realizes that he tricked her so she wouldn't have to go on what amounted to a suicide mission. Sometime later, Lucia visits Dante's shop, musing about how Dante's sacrifice parallels the story about Sparda Matier promised to tell him, and sadly notes that Sparda came back in the end. Then Lucia hears a motorcycle outside and goes to investigate.
  • Bonus Boss: Dante's Secret Room 60 contains what is by far the hardest fight in the game - The Despair Embodied with mooks followed by TWO Despair Embodieds. Try this on Dante Must Die at your peril!
  • Call-Back: Dante comforts a teary-eyed, distressed Lucia at endgame by telling her "Devils never cry." This not only parallels his words to Trish in the final portions of the first game, but Lucia herself parallels Trish's origins as an Artificial Demon created by the game's Big Bad. She's good from the start, unlike Trish, but wonders if her parentage and status as a demon means she'll turn on the humans.
  • Camera Screw: You'll often find yourself shooting away at enemies the camera seems to have no intention of showing you.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Dante's lucky coin is used in a Fake MacGuffin Batman Gambit to fool Arius.
  • Competitive Balance: You can play as either Dante or Lucia. This one is mitigated slightly, however, since they can both be upgraded to become Lightning Bruisers.
  • Dark-Skinned Redhead: Lucia has tan skin and bright red hair.
  • Dem Bones: Sargasso are floating demon skulls that either attempt to bite the player character or shoot icicles at them.
  • Diabolus ex Machina: In the penultimate mission of Dante's campaign, Dante sabotages Arius' ritual by replacing one of his artifacts with an ordinary coin. However, in the final level, Argosax is summoned anyways, as a portal to the demon world inexplicably opens, forcing Dante to step inside to fight him.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: While being the black sheep of the series, the game introduces several elements that would be improved in subsequent games.
    • Dante's Rebellion. In this game, it looks generic and doesn't have background. In later games, it has the skull and ribcage motif in its guard and it's Dante's keepsake sword from his father.
    • Bloody Palace. Unlike its future renditions in the series, this one is endless until you die.
    • Certain moves such as Rain Storm and Fireworks would become series staples. The dodge mechanic would become one of Dante's styles and the cartwheel from 2 was used during 3's development before being replaced with the dash.
    • This is the first game to have multiple playable characters. Unlike the rest of the series, however, the game has two separate campaigns.
  • Easter Egg: Beating the game on Dante Must Die difficulty unlocks Dante's original outfit from 1, complete with the Force Edge in place of Rebellion. Additionally, most of Dante's sound files are switched from that of Matthew Kaminsky to Drew Coombs, his original VA from the first game.
  • Elevator Action Sequence: There's a short elevator battle while climbing the sky-scraper leading to Arius.
  • Fake Difficulty: Rather than there being a button to hold to lock-on to enemies, as 3 and 4 would do, Dante/Lucia lock onto the nearest enemy automatically (and there is a button that can be held to turn this off). This causes two major sources of frustration — firstly, all attacks made are directed towards the enemy that is currently locked on to, even if you are aiming in the completely opposite direction. Secondly, you can't control which enemy you're locking onto, which particularly makes some of the flunky bosses more difficult since your character will spend half their time attacking their mooks, you CAN control the lock-on by the right analog stick but this is poorly explained.
  • Flat Character: Other than Arius, virtually all of the bosses in this game neither have personality nor even speak. They're just another enemy for Dante and Lucia to defeat.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: While all the bosses in this game (except Arius) are nothing but gigantic monstrosities that show up out of the blue to attack Dante, special mention goes to Phantom's appearance. There's no build up to it, only a cutscene depicting him falling from the sky. Dante doesn't even make any comment about it, despite having killed him some time before in the first game.
  • Guide Dang It!: The movesets for all three characters, as the in-game "Actions" doesn't even list half of what you can do. Examples:
    • The game doesn't tell that there are different combos for each character, let alone how to do them. This trips up even experienced DMC players, since combos are done differently compared to the rest of the series.
    • Dante's missing moves include a shoulder check move (performed same as Lucia's Lush), an aerial combo, and different combos with a shotgun. Not only that, but the game outright lies about how one of the moves is perfomed (Rain Storm only says "above the enemy", while it can only be done right after Air Hike or Wall Hike, enemy or no enemy). And, most importantly, the movelist doesn't list Sin Devil Trigger, or any moves you can perform with it.
    • Lucia's movelist doesn't list a frontflip kick (performed same as Dante's Stinger), different aerial moves, several moves with her ranged weapons (downward Darts throw similar to Rain Storm, how to actually throw Cranky Bombs), and DT only moves that are done by pressing "melee" and "shoot" simultaneously.
    • Trish's movelist doesn't list non-DT Round Trip, any of Trish's barehanded moves, or DT only Vortex attack.
  • I Cannot Self-Terminate: Once Arius has been dealt with, Lucia tearfully begs Dante to kill her as well, as she cannot bear the fact that she is one of the villain's artificial demons. Dante naturally refuses, telling her that "devils never cry."
  • Idiosyncratic Combo Levels: This game's Stylish Ranks are: "Don't worry", "Come on!", "Bingo!", "Are you ready?" and "Showtime!!"
  • Imperfect Ritual: Subverted. Dante attempts to sabotage the ritual to summon the demon king Argosax by replacing the Arcana Medaglia with an ordinary coin, but the spell still creates a portal to Demon World.
  • Loose Canon: By and large, 2's impact on the series has been kept to the barest of minimums. Prior to the timeline re-arrangement around 5's release, 2 was stated to have been set long after the events of 4 in such a way that it was deliberately kept out of any ongoing story arcs at the time. 2 now resides between 1 and 4 but even so, it has almost no relevance to the present canon. 5 uses story elements touched on in 1, 3, and 4 but nothing from 2 (2's only appearance in anything related to 5 is in the prologue novel Before the Nightmare).
  • Macabre Moth Motif: Dante and Lucia fight Noctpteran, an enormous moth, as one of the bosses. The moth by itself isn't dangerous, but the eggs it lays hatch into larva that try to eat them.
  • Male Might, Female Finesse: Co-protagonists Dante and Lucia; the former's style of swordplay features strong (if not somewhat slow) attacks while the latter is less powerful but made to be more agile and quicker. Trish, by virtue of being based on Dante as he plays in the first game, however, is a subversion — she's both strong and female.
  • Monster Mash: Argosax the Chaos is the literal embodiment of this trope; he's a bizarre fusion of several bosses faced throughout the game (Phantom, Furiataurus, Nefasturris, Jokatgulm, and Oranguerra), as well as Griffon from 1.
  • Ominous Latin Chanting: Primarily present in the background music of levels, cutscenes, and boss battles during the latter half of the game.
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner: Dante after defeating Arius the second time.
    "'King'? Yeah, here's your crown..."
  • Product Placement: There are alternate costumes that were based on actual brand clothing designed by a company called Diesel, which helped promote the game in Japan.
  • Real-Time Weapon Change: You could switch between your firearms on the fly by pressing a certain button.
  • Recurring Riff: "Dance With Devils", the intro theme, has its octave changed to serve as "Evil Tower" (the theme of the battle with Nefasturris) while its guitar riff and Ominous Latin Chanting respectively are featured in "Shoot The Works" (Dante's second battle theme) and "Cry For The Moon" (Arius' boss theme).
  • Retcon:
    • In DMC1, Force Edge was originally a memento handed down to Dante by his father. DMC2 changed the sword to Rebellion and Force Edge was stuck in the Demon World in DMC3 until Dante takes it back with him in the end.
    • As a whole, Capcom originally took 2 to exist as the distant last game in the timeline while the other three games at the time happened in close enough proximity that they had connecting threads to one another. However as Devil May Cry 5 neared, Capcom rearranged it so 2 now sits between 1 and 4.
  • Same Plot Sequel: This game essentially rehashes the same plotline as the first one. Devil hunter Dante is invited by an Action Girl to a remote island in order to stop demonic forces from raising an ancient demon sealed away in the Demon World by Dante's father Sparda. The Action Girl is later revealed to be a demon created by the Big Bad. Dante comforts her by telling her "Devils never cry" and, after defeating the Big Bad, the Action Girl joins Dante's agency. The main difference between Trish and Lucia is that the former was actually working for Mundus then turned good at the end of DMC1 while Lucia defected from Arius before the beginning of DMC2's story.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Argosax is an extremely powerful demon lord who is trapped in the Underworld, with later lore divulged during the lead-up period to 5 establishing he was equal in power to Mundus without any mention of the Qliphoth fruit that gave Mundus his immense strength. Arius' plan is to summon him in order to harvest the creature's power. He succeeds despite Dante's interference, but is killed before we see the results of his efforts. Then Argosax's power revives Arius as demon (Possessed Arius), eventually warping him into an Eldritch Abomination that Lucia faces as her disc's Final Boss (Arius-Argosax) while Dante is off putting down the real deal.
  • Shout-Out: Lucia's name is taken from Saint Lucia (Lucia in Latin), a Christian martyr who, in The Divine Comedy, acts as an intermediate and instructs Virgil to lead Dante through Hell and Purgatory.
  • Sprint Shoes: The Quick Heart increases Dante's/Lucia's movement speed when in Devil Trigger, while Desperation Devil Trigger/Majin Form does this for Dante regardless of what Heart he has equipped.
  • The Stoic: Dante is much more serious in this game than in any other game in the series. Funnily enough, the game's back cover notes that he was supposed to have even more of a trash talking attitude here.
  • Two-Headed Coin: Dante repeatedly flips one as he teases Lucia and Matier over whether he should help them or not. He hints that the quirk may come from his father.
  • Unexpected Gameplay Change: Just like the first game, there are underwater sequences here, and both your speed and your melee capabilities are severely limited (even with the Aqua Heart equipped). Oh, one boss is also fought underwater. Only Lucia ever goes through those.
  • Updated Re Release: The Devil May Cry HD Collection is a compilation of DMC1, DMC2 and DMC3:SE, featuring upgraded resolutions of HD 720p (for PS3 and Xbox 360) or HD 1080p (for PS4 and Xbox One) and other optimizations. Achievements and Trophies were also added.
  • Villain in a White Suit: Arius wears a white suit and is an Evil Sorcerer, Mad Scientist and Corrupt Corporate Executive all rolled into one.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Arius has a meltdown after realizing that Dante has successfully sabotaged his ritual, screaming in anguish and hatred before they fight.
    Arius (before Dante fights him, after he discovered that Dante set him up by switching the Medalgia with his coin): "Wheeeooooooooo!"
    Arius (post-defeat): "Oooh...! No... My dream... my life... I was meant to be the KEEEEEEEEEEEEENG of this world...!"
  • Warrior vs. Sorcerer: The Big Bad of the game is Arius, an Evil Sorcerer who seeks to claim the power of an ancient demon. He is opposed by Dante and Lucia, the game's heroes. Dante fights with a sword and a pair of guns while Lucia is Dance Battler who uses two short swords and a bunch of knives. The two heroes are half demon but have no spellcasting knowledge, instead using their skill in fighting in tandem with their superhuman physical abilities. They also use some mystical items to aid them.

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