Walkthrough (lower difficulties)Edit
Dante starts outside the Castle, and the first thing to do is proceed across the drawbridge. After Dante crosses it, it raises back up: it will be some time before Dante can return, since he lacks the item needed to do so. Proceed onward.
This new area has a number of tall pillars. Two have diamond-shaped tops while the other three do not, and the latter each have a Red Orb Cache on top of them. These are tricky to get: the best way is to jump, wall-jump and give the analog stick a slight tap so that Dante ledge-grabs the top of the pillar and climbs up onto it. The plaque ahead has a Devil Star hidden behind it, and there is also a Divinity Statue in this area. Switch to the Grenadegun and head down the stairs.
These reptilian demons are very aggressive, lunging at Dante with fast claw slashes, burrowing underground and shooting their claws at him at long range. They also have a mid-air recovery move that prevents them from being juggled to death with Ebony & Ivory. Their armor protects them from weaker firearms, but the Grenadegun will knock them down quickly, particularly with the use of roll-cancelling. Their armor can be smashed with powerful moves such as Stinger, and if Dante can hit them with a strong move from behind they will be knocked face-down on the ground: in this state, a Helm Breaker or dive-kick from Ifrit will kill them instantly. This does not work if they are knocked on their back.
After defeating the Blades, return to the entrance. There is a Yellow Orb off to the left which the player probably saw while fighting, while to the right is a small passage leading to a gravestone. Examining this gives the message "This is where the blue light is sealed." Attack the gravestone with Alastor to push it back and reveal a Blue Orb Fragment.
Some Red Orbs can be found in the covered walkway off to the left: there is nothing that Dante can do with the three doors here at the present time. Out in the main area, double-rows of cold blue flames burning on the ground show the way to an ominous dark archway: head to the left of this archway and jump on top of the small structure to find a Holy Water, then go through the archway.
This new area appears to be the barbican of the castle: a collapsed entrance means Dante cannot proceed any further. Instead, climb up the walls on the left side: up on the second level here is another Devil Star, on the other side in the same place is another Yellow Orb, and there are a couple of Red Orbs in the hallway that connects the two. The main thing in this hallway is another wheel device: activating this will cause the stack of platforms on the far wall to arrange themselves into a spiral formation so that Dante can get up to a stone platform hovering high in the air.
This is a slightly tricky jumping sequence: make sure to jump when platforms are at their highest to get to the next one. With Air Hike it is rendered utterly trivial, as all Dante has to do is jump to the second platform in the sequence, and then he can double-jump up to the goal.
At the top awaits a new Devil Arm, Ifrit. These powerful fire-element gauntlets allow Dante to perform punches and kicks, most of which can be charged for additional damage by holding the melee attack button and releasing it rather than tapping it. They also come with a very useful diving aerial kick move. They do not have Air Hike or any of Alastor's Devil Trigger moves (Air Raid, Vortex) instead having their own selection of DT moves, and their Devil Trigger mode does not increase Dante's movement speed or attack speed, instead only powering up his damage. At present they have no launcher move as this attack (Magma Drive) must be purchased. The player can now switch between Ifrit and Alastor without going to the equipment menu with R3 (click down the right analog stick), which performs a short weapon-change animation.
In a New Game+ where the player already has Ifrit, the pedestal will instead have an enormous Red Orb worth 1,000 Red Orbs.
A few Marionettes will spawn on the ground floor for Dante to test out his new weapon on, after which he can exit back into the main room. However, he will be greeted by...
Griffon is a gigantic demonic bird with the power to fly and control lightning. In contrast to the brutish Phantom, Griffon prefers to fight at range, with a variety of complicated projectile attacks at his command. As a result, the Grenadegun is a vital asset in this battle, both for dealing damage and building up Devil Trigger. Getting used to the travel time of the grenades and roll-cancelling to improve fire rate is important.
An oddity of this fight is that Dante is not actually sealed into the arena, so it is possible to exit back up the stairs and use the Divinity Statue to power up Ifrit first if the player desires. Doing so will reset Griffon's health back to full, however. In addition, Dante does not even have to fight Griffon here: if the player prefers, they can go over to the door, ignite the alcove beside it with Ifrit, and leave. In a New Game+ this can be done as soon as Dante enters this area.
It is actually a good idea to exit and re-enter the room once even if the player intends to fight Griffon here, since this will respawn Griffon on the ground rather than having him start the battle in the air. The player should be wary if they do this using the archway leading back to the area where Dante picked up Ifrit, as there is now a group of Blades on the ground floor which will try to jump Dante as soon as he enters. At all other times, it is important to avoid having Dante stand too near to this archway, as knockback from Griffon's attacks is quite capable of throwing Dante right out of the room through it if he is properly lined up.
Griffon's abilities are as follows:
- Evade: Griffon flaps his wings and jumps to another part of the arena to reposition himself.
- Gust: Griffon sweeps his wings forward, kicking up dust to conceal the startup of his next attack and pushing Dante back if he is close by and not in Devil Trigger mode. He can also perform a 360-degree version of this move if Dante is behind him, usually following up by evading.
- Claw damage: If Griffon has lighting around his talons, touching them will deal damage to Dante.
- Touch damage: Standing on top of Griffon at any time will slowly drain Dante's health: this is only likely to occur if he is knocked on the ground.
- Bombing run: While flying, Griffon droops his wings into a downward "V" shape and glides forwards, releasing clusters of lightning balls underneath him as he carpet-bombs the arena in a straight line.
- Double Check: Griffon releases an orb which descends to the ground if he is in the air, or creates one in his mouth on the ground. This unleashes two beams of electricity that snap together like scissors: jumping on the spot will just mean Dante gets hit when he lands, so either jump to one side or use the invincible frames of Dante's side-roll to evade it. He can perform the ground version up to three times in a row. At low health he can perform an alternative version which releases four diagonal beams which close in a twin-scissor pattern.
- Horizontal Blockade: After a ground Double Check, Griffon fires wide beams of electricity with their midpoints aimed at Dante's current location, up to five times. He will cut this short with another ground Double Check if Dante moves close to him.
- Chain lightning: Only occurs in Hard or Dante Must Die modes. After an aerial Double Check, the orb remains in place and traces out a faint pattern of straight lines across the arena. Lightning then arcs along these lines, dealing damage if Dante is touching them.
- Dive: Griffon lifts off and flies high into the air, then crashes back to the ground diagonally with lightning extending from his talons.
- Rush: When on the ground, Griffon will charge at Dante and attempt to snap at him with a sweeping swing of his beak, with a second follow-on swing if the first one hits. Jump or roll away to avoid it.
- Death attack: When defeated, Griffon has a final AoE attack where lightning strikes the ground all around him. To avoid this, it is best to deal the final blow with a projectile weapon.
Griffon creates stacks of red platforms around the arena which can be used to get some height, which will be destroyed if an attack from Griffon or Dante strikes them: it is never really necessary to use these, however, and he is best fought from the ground.
Striking the hole in Griffon's chest deals additional damage to the demon: timing Grenadegun shots to hit this will bring him down more quickly: it is most exposed when he is in the air or rearing back to perform one of his ground attacks. If Griffon takes a lot of damage in a short space of time he will collapse to the ground in a stunned state, which allows Dante to perform melee attacks on his chest without resistance for a short time before Griffon recovers.
Ifrit's Inferno deals immense damage to Griffon, though it is unlikely that the player will be able to afford it this early on. On the flipside, it is not a good idea to try to use Air Raid to damage Griffon, as it tends to focus the camera on Dante and in doing so hides what Griffon is doing, and since Dante is locked at a fixed altitude while doing Air Raid and cannot dodge-roll, it becomes much harder to evade Griffon's attacks.
With Griffon defeated, Dante is free to grab the Red Orbs he dropped and then use Ifrit to ignite flames in the alcove on the right-hand side of the exit door. Going through the door will take Dante into a misty wooded garden. There is another Red Orb Cache here, located on top of the tree stump to the left: its hitbox is a little finicky and it is quite tricky to land directly on top of it. There is also a Green Orb on top of the small structure at the far end of the garden. In addition, Dante can switch to Alastor, Air Hike off this structure and use Air Raid to fly to the right to find a hidden platform against the wall, which has a large Red Orb and another Holy Water.
Attempting to open the door of this structure will result in it sealing itself. On Normal and above, a cutscene plays showing the arrival of a group of Marionettes followed by a new enemy, the Fetish. This is a much stronger and more durable Marionette which can block like a Bloody Mari and has a powerful flamethrower counter-move, as well as the ability to project the burning weapons it carries like yo-yos. In Easy Automatic Mode, Fetishes do not appear at any point during the game, and the cutscene will be skipped: a group of ordinary Marionettes are fought instead.
After exiting this area, Dante ends up in a small tunnel which leads to a room with a Red Orb, some barrels to smash and a Divinity Statue. Heading down the stairs, Dante can use a platform to jump up to the left to get over the wall into a small side-area, which contains a Red Orb Fountain and another Devil Star hidden behind a breakable gravestone. Jumping back, on the raised platform to the right there is another Yellow Orb.
The sealed door at the end of this room requires 200 Red Orbs to open, and this room contains three Fetishes (or Marionettes in Easy Automatic) with more spawning in to replace them as they are destroyed: the wave is not endless, but it is large. There are also some breakable barrels in the rubble near the door, one of which contains a large Green Orb.
These enemies do not have to be defeated: they are largely here in case the player does not have enough Red Orbs. At any time they have 200 Red Orbs or more, the player can have Dante interact with the sealed door to break the seal and open it: passing through it will complete the mission.
On a fresh-character high-difficulty run only, after picking up Ifrit a set of markers for a Death Scissors fight will appear on the ground below. These can just about be avoided by hugging the wall on the way out.
The "practice" Marionettes will not appear in the room with Ifrit on higher difficulties: if Ifrit has already been collected, there will instead be Blades waiting as soon as Dante enters the room. As noted, Griffon will only use his chain lightning attack in higher difficulties: it does not happen on Normal or Easy Automatic. In Dante Must Die mode the first group of Blades are on a 1 minute and 30 second DT timer.
- In the HD Collection port, a number of issues are associated with Griffon: most notably, the "ribs" on his chest do not pop open and expose his core when he is knocked down as they should, and the effect of the demon changing into a form made of white light and flying away after he is defeated is missing. In the latter case, there are instead just a few crackles of lightning that are supposed to surround the effect of the bird, followed by the camera tracking a missing effect.