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Why Dante's Inferno will eviscerate God of War

Go to Hell.

No, that’s not what we wish upon you, dear reader. Instead, grand publisher EA wants you to spend time in the worst of afterlives. Incidentally, Hell is where their next big action game takes place, titled Dante’s Inferno and yes, it is based upon Dante’s epic poem The Divine Comedy.

Rest easy Lit majors. Inferno - which is heavily based upon the first third of the Comedy - rips all the boring parts of the poem out and transforms it into an action epic… and that’s not a bad thing. We recently got our hands on Inferno and while the game is pretty early in development, it was playable enough to give us a taste of what’s to come.

Story

If you haven’t read The Divine Comedy, we’ll give you a quick primer. In the early 1300s, Dante wrote an epic poem about his journey through the allegorical Christian afterlife - Inferno (Hell), Purgatory and Paradise (Heaven) - with a guide, named Virgil. What’s interesting is that not only did Dante write himself as the main character, but also the poem ended up being the defining medieval view of the Christian afterlife.

The first section - Inferno - is Dante’s physical descent into the nine layers of Hell, with each layer representing a sin inflicted either upon one’s self or others. Not unlike the seven deadly sins, they are: Limbo, Lust, Gluttony, Greed, Wrath, Heresy, Murder, Fraud, and Treachery. The poem is basically just Dante and Virgil walking and describing the various punishments for each soul in each of these layers.

But you’re here for a game, not college class. The Dante of EA’s action game is more badass than the original poet. He’s a vet of the Crusades and in the game’s tutorial section, has you defeat Death for his soul-reaping scythe. Yes, you defeat the Grim Reaper and use his weapon for the entire game. After the war, you return home to find your wife, Beatrice, has been slain. However, instead of descending to Heaven, Lucifer steals her soul. Does Dante pout? No, he charges full steam into the gates of Hell and begins his quest in the first layer, Limbo.

None of the cutscenes were done, but we did get an early look at the animatics (animated storyboards that serve as placeholders) and we’re sure we’ll be very impressed once the game is finalized. Instead of deviating from the story, EA has embraced what made the poem so interesting. EA has taken Dante’s literal map of Hell and transformed it into a game, of which you’ll traverse all nine layers before taking on Lucifer himself. On the surface Inferno evokes a classic love story. However, Executive Producer Jonathan Knight was quick to suggest Dante’s sins will be atoned for in each level suggesting darker things planned for our hero throughout the game.

54 comments

  • Matgta - October 6, 2009 1:04 p.m.

    Kinda remind's me a little of soul reaver.
  • abortnaw22 - June 8, 2009 10:13 p.m.

    i can not wait for this game i preoreded it im gonna play it all night
  • lovinmyps3 - February 28, 2009 11:07 p.m.

    ok first: this is a TOTAL rip off of GOW, at least it sounds like it. second: it will be an awesome game for when im done with GOW3 lol XD
  • octagons - February 27, 2009 11:46 p.m.

    when i saw the first trailer i thought meh but now with the second trailer i thinking this is going to be fucking epic!
  • Englishman931 - February 26, 2009 9:57 p.m.

    Eviscerate, eh? Only Gamesradar hand picks only the freshest adjectives
  • jackrabbitslims - February 26, 2009 2:53 p.m.

    I never saw what was so special about GoW. It was a pretty hack and slash with really great controls but a LAME ass story and a tired, cliche main character. I'm not saying the game was bad, but imo it wouldn't be that hard to beat.
  • theschwartzb - February 26, 2009 12:02 p.m.

    This game may not be God of War, but if it is as near to the aformentioned game as this article says, i will be very happy indeed. I have been wanting to play GoW for quite a while now, but i just dont have the money to shell out for the PS2 PS3. Yay for bloody violent demon killing.
  • chrisat928 - February 26, 2009 7:56 a.m.

    That should be 'how' not 'who.'
  • Japanjack - February 25, 2009 10:55 p.m.

    Perhaps GR should feel inclined to wait for a final product before shamelessly stating such a bold comment. Not a good idea. Might hurt your credibility. . . like saying Onechanbara was "good".
  • NelosAngelos - February 25, 2009 10:40 p.m.

    How it will eviscerate God of War III, that's a bold statement, Shane Patterson. It looks interesting and the prospect of it being based on an actual literary work, a very good literary work no doubt seems interesting. I'll keep watch of this.
  • cart00n - February 25, 2009 7:36 p.m.

    I'm currently in the middle of Dead Space right now and am loving it whole-heartedly. If these guys can do for the epic hack-n-slash what they did for the sci-fi survival horror genre, I am SO there!
  • kenny disco - February 25, 2009 5:24 p.m.

    blimey, future publishing seem to be giving this a load of hype, for your sakes i hope its worth it.
  • Romination - February 25, 2009 3:26 p.m.

    oh no... i sense a fanboy war brewing... BUT! Congratulations on making me care, Shane. I really, REALLY gave this game some epic 'meh's before this and now it's a pretty good sized 'hmmm!!!' instead
  • deathrebellion - February 25, 2009 11:50 a.m.

    Nice story and looks gr8. point is who got the name wrong Vergil from Devil may Cry or Virgil from this one.....lolzzz
  • Tasty_Pasta - February 25, 2009 4:42 a.m.

    I don't even like GoW, so I think I'll pass. Too much hack-n-slash for my taste.
  • reyalejandro13 - February 25, 2009 3:43 a.m.

    I hope it does better than God of War, not because i hate god of war(one of my all-time favorite series), but because it feels good to see a new game do better than an already established series, only to be topple by the next installment. Uness it does better than Halo. Also, there's no good GoW-like game on XBox 360 yet, and this could satisfy my needs. I'm not getting a PS3 anytime soon, not worth it when i have all the good games except for MGS4, LBP, and eventually KH3 and Gow3 on Xbox.
  • Nodoudt - February 25, 2009 2:47 a.m.

    I've read the book... This is gonna be epic...
  • jar-head - February 25, 2009 2:46 a.m.

    dantes inferno is a damn good book,but for a game, lots of blood...epic poems in general are pretty bad ass....
  • BrandonL337 - February 25, 2009 2:19 a.m.

    @aerobie Beowulf
  • lava_lamp - February 25, 2009 2:06 a.m.

    one of my favorite books but the game will be an abomination ill be happy if they at least just change the name Dante is turning over in his grave

Showing 1-20 of 54 comments

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