For those that were busy with all the holiday bustle, the Dante’s Inferno demo was released on the PlayStation Network last week Needless to say we downloaded it as soon as it became available and so far, are pretty impressed.
Let’s get the dirt out and cover what we don’t like so far. It isn’t much, but we want to be thorough.
With all of the great cinematic trailers for the game, we were VERY surprised to see traditional 2D animation sequences in the game. Being pulled out of a 3D world, into a 2D one for background story is a little jarring… Luckily the sequences are fairly short, but we were a little taken aback.
Some of the action sequences took us a while to figure out as well… For example, when you’re fighting Death, who looks to be the first real Boss Battle, a stick would start moving up and down prompting us for a finishing move (or the first step in a finishing move). After several failed attempts we noticed that there was an “O” on the top of the stick, which meant that we didn’t have to actually wiggle a stick, we had to repeatedly press the “O” button to perform the action. Once we figured this out, the game became a LOT more fun.
Based on what we saw in the demo, Dante’s Inferno is rated “M” for a reason. There wasn’t any swearing in the game, but there was nudity and plenty of blood. It’s definitely one of those games that you’ll need to send the kids out of the room while playing (we certainly did).
At first blush, Dante’s Inferno seemed like a real button-masher with combos, chained attacks, etc. That was until we discovered the RPG elements of the game. As you level Dante up you gain new attacks, combos, skills etc. This, in itself isn’t new, but the development team has taken a traditional leveling and put a nice little spin on it. If you have played any of the God of War series, the gameplay is VERY similar.
As you finish off enemies (by grabbing them, sticking them with your scythe, etc) you have a couple of options. You can “Absolve” them of their sins, in which case you free their spirts and earn “Holy” experience points, to be used for “Holy” unlocks and level up items/skills.
If you’ve got a bit of a mean streak in you, you can “Punish” them and finish them off in rather brutal fashion (heads and torsos everywhere). if you decide to “Punish” them, you earn “Unholy” experience points to be used for darker/attack related items.
It seems that the main difference between “Holy” and “Unholy” is that one is for melee/close-combat attacks and the other (“Holy”) is for ranged attacks, healing, etc.
According to the developers, the choices you make will also affect the story, but we’re not sure to what extent.
In the demo you run through what seems to be portions of two levels of the game. The first is outside, during the crusades, to get you familiar with the attack buttons, controls etc. Your beloved Beatrice is murdered while you’re away and you get stabbed in the back, which leads you to your first Boss Battle, Death himself.
Once you beat him up a bit, take his weapon and split him down the middle with it, you return home to find your dead fianc and her family. This begins your descent into hell as you battle your way to the gates of Hell and the second Boss Battle of the demo, the Guardian of the Gate.
For those that don’t own a PS3, the demo for the Xbox 360 will hit Xbox LIVE on December 24, just in time for Christmas!
So far we like the take on the original Dante’s Inferno story (they changed him to a warrior instead of a poet to make it a little more action oriented), and it was a TON of fun to play. This is definitely one of the games to watch for 2010.
Dante’s Inferno is based on the immensely influential classic poem, Dante’s Inferno takes you on an epic quest of vengeance and redemption through the Nine Circles of Hell. You are Dante, a veteran of the Crusades who must chase his beloved Beatrice and try to free her soul from Lucifer’s grasp. As your pursuit takes you deeper into the pits of Hell, you must battle ever more fierce and hideous monsters-while also facing your own sins, a dark family past, and your unforgivable war crimes. It will be available for the Xbox 360, PS3 and PC on January 10, 2010.
AKA: The HolyFragger
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