Devil May Cry 5 weapons and combo guide: how to get a S rank with Nero, Dante and V

Devil May Cry is all about style and you'll really have to master Devil May Cry 5's weapons and combos if you want to reach an S rank. The story might sputter and not always make sense but the combat continues to feel tense, tight, and tantalizing. Learn the ropes and everything in the game flows, with flashy style as the music and that Devil May Cry 5 actions swells with energy of your own making.

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Of course, none of that style is obtainable if you’re struggling. Obtaining SSS rank, the highest combo level, isn’t the easiest challenge, but that’s why we’re here! We’ve put together a short guide on how to approach Devil May Cry 5’s demons with confidence, master those weapons and combos, and come out on top with a smokin’ sexy style (SSS) on the other side. 

How does the Devil May Cry 5 raking system work? 

The core of Devil May Cry 5 combat is its style ranking, a letter grade you receive after each fight and at the end of each level. They range through the following: 

  • D - Dismal
  • C - Crazy
  • B - Badass
  • A - Apocalyptic
  • S - Savage
  • SS - Sick skills 
  • SSS - smokin’ sexy style

Your ranking will increase, with each letter filling like a meter, as you build up combos with a continuous stream of attacks. It’ll increase faster if you use a wider variety of moves, as well as ones that are harder to pull off - taunting midair while riding the Punch Line breaker will see your rank skyrocket. Spamming the same handful of attacks, less so. 

Your grade will slowly drop in between attacks, while being hit will drop your grade back down to D. So make sure to be moving and attacking at all times. You’ll also want to avoid using the same attacks repeatedly since that’ll lower your style ranking as well. Try to interchange melee attacks, ranged weapons, and the various devil breaker moves when you’re playing as Nero (or whatever special attacks the character your using has) together for the best kind of result.

At the end of each level you’ll see how many style points you gained and what you’re final grade is, but you should already have a good idea based on how each fight went.

How to get an S rank in Devil May Cry 5

You can’t say you’ve beaten Devil May Cry 5 unless you’ve conquered at least some of its levels while rockin' the SSS smokin’ sexy style. It’s the best feeling in the world to KO demon after demon, racking up kills while listening to the soundtrack build and build. So much in Devil May Cry 5 is tied to the style system and it’s a delight when it all comes together. It’s tempting to sit back and rely on one or two moves to take out the majority of enemies - but that isn’t how things work in Devil May Cry - variety is required to excel in this series.

Outside of using a variety of moves at a continuous rate there are a couple things you can do to hit a SSS smokin’ sexy style more easily: 

  • Try to draw enemies in and group them up so you can hit more, faster
  • Zip into enemies, or pull them in, if they get too far apart. 
  • Make space to use taunts. 
  • Try and constantly change up your approach, and attacks as a result - fight from the air, the ground, lock on for a bit then don't and so on. Basically switch between as much stuff as you have, as often as you can.  
  • Be aware of how strong you’re weapons are, if you upgrade something too much it could one shot enemies, making it harder to build combos up. 

Use the Void to practice your attacks to both nail those timings, as well as get it all under muscle memory. It’s important to slow down when you first start and try each move as the game prompts them - you’ll learn how to dodge, do different types of melee attacks, use special abilities, fire range attacks, and more. One thing to always remember with any of the three characters is to stay loose - mobility is the name of the game so keep jumping, dodging, and dancing all the way to that SSS ranking. 

Extend Devil May Cry 5 combos with guns

Blue Rose, Nero’s gun, is great for connecting two melee attacks when enemies are spread out. It's the same for Dante's pistols, or better a rocket launcher, and V's Griffon - all fire relatively weak attacks over distance that are good for continuing a Devil May Cry 5 combo but pretty rubbish at actually killing anything. Moving between distant enemies is probably one of the biggest problems when building up combos so it's a handy way to keep things going as you cover the distance. Don’t get too reliant though, as over using anything will hurt the variety of moves. Each firearm option, or bird, also has a powered up attack you can use if you hold the ranged button to charge and release an extra powerful blast. These can do a reliable amount of damage and help vary the combo, so remember to use it. 

Devil May Cry 5 Nero combo guide: master the Red Queen

The Red Queen is Nero’s main weapon and that’s what you’ll end up using the most so mastering his moveset is paramount. Without a target lock you have the ability to mix Nero’s sword with the directional input to push each attack in a certain direction. That's good for both hitting new enemies, as well as preventing incoming attacks from breaking your combo. While locked on you'll access different moves with directions to do things like close distances, inflict extra damage or launch enemies into the air for a little juggle.

You’ll quickly find that you’ll rely on Red Queen’s aerial abilities a lot, but you’ll want to start working in gunshots and Devil Trigger hits in between slashes when you can to mix things up. After that - dodge, jump, dodge, dodge, and jump. Nothing is more important than mobility. Equip the Gerbera devil trigger as it gives you extra movement abilities as well. However if you're after damage then you can use the Tomboy Devil Breaker to give Red Queen and Blue Rose a boost. It will limit your mobility and turn off your ability to lock on to enemies, but the strength increase is worth it. 

Devil May Cry 5 Dante combo guide: change styles and mix it up

Dante has a bigger arsenal of moves and weapons, and a ton of firepower up his sleeves compare to other characters. Like Nero he has his sword, Rebellion, but he also pack multiple guns, including a high damage rocket launcher. Then there's a range of weapons like Cavaliere, a chainsaw-type weapon, and Cerberus, an ice-powered nunchaku with the ability to transform into a bo staff. Packing such an arsenal makes it much easier to alternate between weapons to raise your style rank and you use different fighting styles to boost your rank further. You can switch between these on the d-pad and select the following options: 

  • Trickster - Focused on speed and evasion
  • Swordmaster - Increased range of melee moves.
  • Royal Guard - Lets you block and parry attacks which count towards combos.
  • Gunslinger - More gun based options.

Switching between these can help increase your combo directly by varying your attacks, and it can also make combos easier to achieve. For example using Tricksters dodge can close in on enemies faster, Royal Guard can turn enemy blows into combos as you block, and Gun Slinger can access a range of new attacks to extend the range or variety of your combos. 

Devil May Cry 5 V combo guide: upgrade you abilities and know when to finish enemies

V fights with three beasts: Griffon, Shadow, and Nightmare, who take the form of a bird, panther, and giant-monster-demon, respectively. While that might seem a world away from Devil May Cry 5's usual swords and guns, they basically function in a similar way - Shadow is V’s melee move, Griffon’s thunder is his ranged attack, and Nightmare is akin to Nero’s devil bringer. All three take up space in the fight, so you’ll want to keep V at a safe distance from strong enemies while his summoned demons fight (either automatically or through your commands). Each demon has a limited amount of health so you’ll want to monitor their levels as you fight. If they die you'll lose the options they bring but if you get close to their 'body' they'll resurrect quicker. 

One of the best ways to make combos and rank increases easier is to make sure you expand each of your demon's ability by buying new skills. V can be one of the more spammy fighters in DMC5 and having more options for Shadow and Griffon is an easy way to increase styles faster. Time when you physically kill demons with V's cane as well, you'll need to do anyway but it will sharply raises style ranking so use it wisely. 

Freelance Writer

Aron writes for Upcomer covering the video games and eSports industries in-depth. He was previously a freelancer whose work appeared in Wired, Rolling Stone, Washington Post, and GamesRadar, among others.