Japan Review Check: DmC: Devil May Cry, LittleBigPlanet Karting

Here's a quick summary of the console titles coming out next week in Japan, courtesy of the review pages of Famitsu magazine. It's a slow post-holiday week, but there's one hotly-anticipated title on offer, at least:

- DmC: Devil May Cry (8/9/8/9, 34 points out of 40): The Ninja Theory-developed reboot of Capcom's stylish action series did pretty well over in Famitsu, although not outstandingly.

"The game's core fun of using guns and swords and such to mow down foes is still there," wrote editor Ranbu Yoshida. "The wild side of the Dante you see here really looms large, giving him a cool edge. Once you get used to the controls, which use the L and R buttons for different things, you'll be able to launch a wide variety of combos and expand your attacks."

"This looks like a completely new and different game," added Famitsu writer Jigoro Ashida, "but that stylish action is still inherited from the rest of the series. The controls are very comfortable, and using all your skills to flashily defeat foes is really exhilarating. Like with other games in the series, you can high ranks if you put some thought into battle, making it fun for both beginners and experts."

Meanwhile, most of the complaints from the review crew centered around DmC's control scheme, something that was brought up in pretty much every editor's write-up. "All the skills you have lend themselves to some pretty stylish battles," Yoshida wrote, "but as a side effect of that, you're asked for some pretty technical control moves. This puts the game on the tough side, and I wish there was some kind of easier control mode or something."

"It's nice that the game targets the nearest enemy when you're wielding a gun," Ashida added, "but you have to press L3 to switch targets, which isn't as intuitive as it could be."

- LittleBigPlanet Karting (8/8/9/9, 34 points): The latest in the LBP games hits Japan last out of all the world's PlayStation 3 regions, but Famitsu scored it a touch higher than most U.S. media sites. "The graphics and music are excellent," Yoshida wrote, "and the courses are packed with variety and unique construction. The Create mode, where you use a ton of parts to build original courses, is also superb. However, the tutorial is hard to understand in spots, so making anything really intricate could require a pretty long learning process."

"The courses look like someone overturned a toy box on the floor," added writer Urara Honma. "There's something neat and new you discover every time you run on them, and picking up weapons and using them on your competitors is great fun. It's harder than it should be to place objects in 3D space in Create mode, but the sheer amount of freedom you have really encourages creativity."

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