Dante's Inferno Review for Xbox 360

On: Xbox 360PS3PSP
The holly crucifix makes for an awesome weapon
The holly crucifix makes for an awesome weapon

The holly crucifix makes for an awesome weapon

Of course, this being a trip through Hell, it's not going to be easy to be good. When you're given the choice to absolve or punish, the former requires far more effort, with a time-consuming, boring, button-tapping mini-game testing your holiness to its limit. It's far easier to just press a button and stab the poor soul through the gut and skull, but doing so won't earn you as many souls and won't help you level up your unholy level. Badly placed checkpoints that force you to replay these punish or absolve moments over and over again simply add weight to the case for the easy option. Whether you punish or absolve has no impact on the game's storyline (something that would have made each decision more taxing) but the system does provide a neat way to tailor your combat options.

As much as Dante can get away with some button mashing, he's got all the moves you'd want him to have. Blocking at the right time will let him counter an enemy's attack with a devastating blow of his own (with either the scythe or the crucifix), he's able to dodge attacks using the right analogue stick and magic can be mapped to the four face buttons - activated when pressed in combination with a modifier button and when the mana meter has enough juice. My favourite and most useful is the shield, which also recharges health once upgraded, but the other more offensive options all have their uses.

Perhaps more important, and able to shape the gameplay to your own style, are relics. These can initially be equipped to two slots, and grant you bonuses such as an increased chance of a critical strike on an enemy and a faster filling redemption meter - when activated Dante's moves can be performed at a faster pace. These are also home to my favourite item ever in a video game: the relic that reduces damage caused from excrement attacks. That's right. One of the most disgusting enemies in the game will poop on you in the nastiest way imaginable. Relics will upgrade as you use them, too, so it's not a good idea to constantly switch to a new one unless you feel it will really benefit your play style.

On the whole the combat system is fast, fun and easy to learn. There's depth here, provided by the use of magic and relics, and the countering will take time to master. Most importantly, it looks great. Dante's unholy cross produces the most striking visual effect, filling the surrounding area with a cool light blue glow as enemies go flying. When you're able to pull off stunning moves with relative ease you'll want to do it again and again, and go deeper into the system to learn the more complex moves. Genre snobs might turn their noses up because this isn't punishing on a Ninja Gaiden level, but it's not trying to be.

Given that Visceral had the poem's vision of the nine circles of Hell to play with it should be no surprise that each is quite brilliant in its depiction of vileness. It's hard to see the game as impressive looking, such is the level of depravity on show, including rivers of blood complete with souls forever committing suicide; walls covered with trapped souls, all moaning in an attempt to be set free; and bodies adorning the walkways, each sitting rather uncomfortably on a spike. At times there are flashes of roughness, with scenery being a little too angular, but on the whole the circles of Hell are gloriously depressing to play through.

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User Comments

Bloodstorm's Avatar

Bloodstorm

Even then, i still think it shouldn't be a game.
Posted 17:39 on 10 February 2010
El-Dev's Avatar

El-Dev@ Bloodstorm

Dante's Inferno is the game, The Divine Comedy is the poem.
Posted 09:07 on 10 February 2010
Bloodstorm's Avatar

Bloodstorm

I'm still not crossing the bridge for this, i throughly believe Dantes Inferno should not be turned into a game.
Posted 02:58 on 10 February 2010
El-Dev's Avatar

El-Dev

Just completed the first boss fight, whilst similar to those in Batman it was a good bit better than what Rocksteady had to throw at us. The world the game is set in is brilliant I think so far with a few nice touches, like being able to absolve or punish some infamous sinners.

Also, I think it hasn't scored well on other sites for ripping off GOW. Is that really a bad thing? So far so good in my opinion.
Posted 14:43 on 09 February 2010
Rickitis's Avatar

Rickitis

http://uk.gamespot.com/ps3/action/da...opslot;title;2

Gets a 6.5 on GameSpot so it might not be to everyones taste.
Posted 11:26 on 07 February 2010
Get2DaChoppa's Avatar

Get2DaChoppa

I'm also a GOW fan, and have been waiting for a GOW-esque game to come out on the 360, not including bayonetta, that's far more DMC. So I think Dante's Inferno may be worth a look.
Posted 14:59 on 06 February 2010
Wido's Avatar

Wido

Being a big GOW fan. Dante's Inferno is up there. I got the game today and just come off it. So far its brilliant. Its a tipical hack & slash and I don't want all my hack & slash games being the same regardless of the gameplay.

I can see myself playing Dante's Inferno for a long time as to me it has the replay value written across it. Hopefully Visceral will support the game with future DLC, and I have got the Death Edition of the game. Unlocked, Dead Space character Issac character skin :D
Posted 14:20 on 06 February 2010
altaranga's Avatar

altaranga

I played this for a few hours yesterday. So far I am inclined to agree with Tom's assessment. The fighting is fun, but this game is not offering anything new.

But why trust me? You guys can make your own minds up I'm sure.
Posted 08:16 on 05 February 2010
slayereyez's Avatar

slayereyez@ renegade

your right its not a multi platform game that was the point i was making thanks for pushing it forward for me guy. And yes I am also aware of advertisement i just feel that the God of War is strong enough to get it's sales without Krato's Fury drink. I think it brings a $$$ approach and I don't think that's cool.

O sorry to get off topic but Renegade how much $ did sega pay you to advertise whatever abortion of a sonic game that pic is?
Posted 20:00 on 04 February 2010
Wido's Avatar

Wido

To be honest I'm not bitching about GOW comparing to Dante. I personally believe that Dante will be a good new IP for this decade?

GOW has wow'ed people because of its brutailty and the story behind it which kind of makes it fitting when Kratos fights against the Hydra in GOW1 and against some deranged Octopus in GOW2 before you get into the Sisters of fate temple. I guess the whole 9 circles of hell not be to peoples liking, but I somewhat feel that Dante's Inferno has grown on me. I was really impressed by the demo, and the cinematic scenes are top notch!
Posted 19:03 on 04 February 2010
SexyJams's Avatar

SexyJams

Am I the only one who thought this was going to fail on it's arse.
I really didn't want it too, and I'm seriously glad it didn't,
but I'm also completely shocked it got such a great score.
Awesome review Tom.
Posted 15:20 on 04 February 2010
guyderman's Avatar

guyderman

I don't quite get all this where people are bitching a game as it's like God of war - as if GOW invented this style of gameplay - to name just a couple that were released last gen PoP:SoT was released before GoW, Ninja Gaiden was released before GoW, which in turn borrowed from the likes of Zelda and Soul Reaver and Tomb Raider - so why are people shouting about it being a GoW clone when GoW was just a clone of other games itself*


*personally I really like the GoW games so this is not a dig at either of the games.
Posted 12:41 on 04 February 2010
IndoorHeroes's Avatar

IndoorHeroes

Again, 7 is still a respectable score. In my books scores breakdown like this...

7 - Decent - Worth buying if I find it on the cheap (£20 or less)
8 - Good - I can feel confident that this title is certainlyy worth my money
9 - Superb - I'll be seriously missing out if I don't play this
10 - Exquisite - The fillet mignon of the gaming world. A must own.
Posted 10:24 on 04 February 2010
renegade's Avatar

renegade

This game has reviewed very mixed :( IGN just gave it a 7.5 and 7.0 in the uk :( this is a shame i must say. game does look good they make a point of it pushing the M (18) rating as being a bad thing. Who cares? I'm old enough to decide if killing Babies in hell is a good thing or not xD I dont need IGN telling that lol

any way :D Go Dante!
Posted 22:05 on 03 February 2010
Rickitis's Avatar

Rickitis

'Ultimately, our issue is simple - if you’re going to shamelessly riff on a formula popularised and pretty much perfected by another massive game title - yes, God of War in this instance - you better be damn sure you do it better. And, sadly, aside from its excellent combat system, Dante’s Inferno misses the mark in almost every way. It’s dated, uninspired, repetitive, clumsy and almost totally forgettable. But - and this is a big but - there absolutely is fun to be had from Visceral’s superb fighting engine and, truthfully, the simple act of hitting things until they explode is a pleasant enough distraction. That’s going to be more than enough for the less discerning, more forgiving player, particularly with multiple difficulty settings to tantalise with further grasps for perfection. Anyone else, however, should quite reasonably demand more.'
7.0/10 - IGN - just for comparison dont kill me...
Posted 21:58 on 03 February 2010

Game Stats

Technical Specs
Dante's Inferno
8
Out of 10
Dante's Inferno
  • Fast, fun and flashy combat
  • Great world to play in
  • Puzzles might as well not exist
  • Occasionally annoying repetition
Agree? Disagree? Get Involved!
Release Date: 09/02/2010
Platforms: Xbox 360 , PS3 , PSP
Developer: EA Redwood Shores
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Genre: Adventure
No. Players: One
Rating: BBFC 18
Site Rank: 1,187 4
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