Dante’s Inferno

I’m about two-third’s of the way through “Dante’s Inferno” (Divine Edition, PS3, $19.99) and find the game to be very engaging. The premise is that you are Dante, a soldier from the Crusades who defeats Death and then battles his way down through the nine circles of Hell to redeem his wife. The game is filled with quotes and scenes from the first part of Dante Alighieri’s epic poem “Divine Comedy“, “Inferno“.

The game design is similar to the “God of War” series in a number of ways. You control your character through a third-person camera that automatically positions itself relative to the player in a cinematic manner. Through your character, you can swing a scythe to attack enemies, perform magic, and use a holy cross for ranged attacks. You can also redeem or condemn your enemies, which gives you experience in two parallel paths. With enough experience, you achieve new levels in these paths, which open up abilities (activated by sequences of button presses) that can be purchased. The currency for these purchases are the souls that you gather by vanquishing, redeeming, or condemning enemies, as well as items in the environment that apparently store souls that can be released by destroying them. There are also objects that can be gathered throughout the game, relics and pieces of silver, that give even more bonuses when equipped and souls, respectively. There are save points placed throughout the game, as well as appearances by the Roman poet, Virgil, who introduces you to what is to come.

The game is rated “M” for Mature 17+, with “Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Nudity, and Sexual Content”. Not only do I recommend parents stick firmly to this recommendation, I also recommend not playing this within eyesight or even earshot of children. All four of the content items are present not only in abundance, but also in quite disturbing ways, visually and aurally. The wails of the eternally tortured are omnipresent, along with the disgusting sounds of bodies being torn apart, and the like. I would be afraid of nightmares for my four-year-old based on the sound-scape, alone! People with strong religious convictions may have problems with some aspects of the game, as well.

So, great game for adults…to play late at night with headphones!

Leave a Reply