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General Information

Devil May Cry 4 has few balance changes from Vanilla to Special Edition. However, some of the changes affected game's internal workrate which is one of the primary reason of why Special Edition is timed as LRT.

Gameplay :

  • Mission 1 Dante has less health.
  • CS now maintains the charge when switching rooms or certain cutscene.
  • Some hitbox size and cancel timing has been altered. Full House for Example
  • Cannot dodge out of any of the new three characters moves, the dodge registers only after the attack animation finishes. Stark contrast to Dante in DMC3/DMC4 and Nero.
  • Currency rewards for Proud Souls and Orbs has been increased.
  • Speed takes fewer step to activate now. The cost of this ability is also reduced now.
  • Additional rotations on ex-streak when hitting a lot of targets at once. This also happens with the Devil Buster move, where the move is extended with additional slams.
  • Nero's Shuffle can't be consistently canceled during the backstep part as it used to in the vanilla. Although, this only happens when turbo is active or FPS being set to 60. Exceed increases the probability of cancelling it.
  • The timing on the second row of grim grips during mission 3 in the torture chamber is changed.
  • Dante Boss may glitch out at times when he is about to die. He will remain in RG and reflect any attacks. Only way to fix this would be a mission restart or checkpoint reset.

System :

  • Save slots and manual saving is removed.
  • Background music that played during Library menu has been removed.
  • The transition between menus is longer than in vanilla.
  • The game doesn't play or view game voice effect, visual effects and hitboxes if the FPS dips.
  • The time red trail on boss enemy health bar that indicates damage done has been decreased.
  • Subtitle font has been changed and scaled down to accommodate for higher resolutions, but it doesn't scale back on lower resolutions causing to appear too small.
  • Some stage visual effects are broken such as the water in the fountain,
  • Increased shadow drawing distance which can appear glitchy and out of place in cutscene, since the black shades stick out in the background.
  • The game has wrong gamma values that result in slightly incorrect contrast, broken mid-tones and dithering that affects everything ranging from in-game effects to still images and gradients. This is seen in darker areas and the broken gradients can be seen in the character images gallery.
  • Specific effects that caused slight image space blur in vanilla are broken now and instead of subtle blur the whole screen flashes blinding white. Example: Charged Shock
  • Some visual effects such as breaking of the red door seal are in lower resolution even when the effect option is set to the highest.
  • Alt + Tab from full-screen mode sometimes puts the game into border-less windowed mod with incorrect scaling, this can only be reverted by switching back to windowed mode.
  • When compared to vanilla, the sound quality is lower in volume.
  • The needle displayed on HUD that would usually rise from the bottom to top in a smooth and quick arc on successful Max-Act, now instantly flips to the end position without proper animation.
  • Sometimes the charge time for Reb Round Trip is almost cut in half and initiates faster, but sometimes it works as it was in vanilla.

Miscellaneous :

  • Game's size increased by almost 3 times because most of the characters and most cutscene textures have been upscaled two times with a sharpening filter applied over them.
  • Parts of Vergil's hair are invisible if you look at him from the back
  • Added Depth of Field and Motion Blur effects that can't be turned off and on. You can only disable them by editing the .exe which also turns them off for cutscenes.
  • Added Lightshaft/Godrays effect almost everywhere that can only be turned off in the ini file, but will turn back on if you touch the ingame settings.
  • If the screen resolution is not a native 16:9, it's automatically letter-boxed to that aspect instead of being stretched or readjusted. Vanilla supported all aspect ratios without any problems.
  • Mouse cursor stays active even during gameplay and cutscenes as opposed to being hidden in vanilla.
  • Advanced anti-aliasing methods 8cx 8xcQ 16x and 16xQ that could have been used on configurations that supported it are no longer available.
  • Internal shadow resolution and draw distance have been raised internally, but new settings options have not been added to accommodate for this, there is also no clear explanation on what the capped setting variations do.

Difficulty differences

(1) There are seven different types of difficulty. For this game, below are the most significant ones.

Elements that change with difficulty Human Devil Hunter Son of Sparda Legendary Dark Knight Dante Must Die
Damage to the enemies x1.5 x1 x0.8 x1.2 x0.6
Damage from enemies x0.5 x1 x1.75 Same as Son of Sparda x3

Devil Trigger

Like every DMC games, DT is an essential part of characters arsenal, mostly because it's a universal part of their abilities. You can use it at anytime, and DT enhancements are unique for each characters. Damage is reduced drastically during in DT mode, and enemy attacks that cause a Regular hit stun no longer affect the characters in DT mode. Although, the DT drain varies.

Super-Costumes offers some changes in gameplay not just the usual the 0-vitality recovery, infinite DT and apperances. Each character also receives their own unique ability upgrade. Although Lady/Trish lacks that option.
  • Super Nero – Red Queen is in a permanent state of maximum Exceed.
  • Super Dante – Unlimited RG and Pandora's Disaster gauges.
  • Super Vergil – Concentration Gauge does not depleted and is always maxed out.

Bloody Palace

Compared to DMC3 Bloody Palace mode in DMC4 has a timer which counts down during the battle. If the timer reaches zero, the game is over. Defeating enemies adds a small amount of time to the timer. Timer bonuses are also gained for clearing a stage while suffering no damage and by killing enemies when the Stylish rank is high. Bosses appear in Stages 20, 40, 60, 80, and 100. Stage 101 is a battle against Dante. (2)

BP Bonuses
Bonus Seconds Added
D rank bonus +1
C rank bonus +2
B rank bonus +3
No damage, Stages 1-19 +30
No damage, Stages 21+ +20


1) Values gathered using Cheat Engine

2) DMC4 Prima Official Game Guide (2008): Prima Games. Bonus Data, Bloody Palace; p. 154.