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Available for the PS3 and Xbox 360

It doesn’t take too long before you get the feeling that Dante’s Inferno sincerely tries hard to match the ferocity of the mythical God of War series, to which it will be invariably compared. [firstpara] It succeeds in some ways, but ultimately, it can’t shake the feeling that it’s basically a rip-off. Because exciting though it may be, Dante’s Inferno never truly outshines God of War, and will forever be damned into the little-known tenth circle of hell: mediocrity.

Based loosely on Dante Alighieri’s medieval era poem-slash-trek-through-hell, the game puts you in the shoes of Dante, a knight who manages to kill Death with the creature’s own scythe. To the victor go the spoils, and Dante takes possession of Death’s scythe.

Upon his return home however, our little Death-killer here finds out that Lucifer is more than a little pissed, and has proceeded to take the soul of his now-dead wife. Thus begins Dante’s life as a rescue ranger, set not in a colorful Disney world, but in the many circles of hell.

As you’ll find out, reaching Lucifer isn’t as easy as riding the train to work. The impressive design of these demonic creatures will make you sick. They are vile and grotesque, and they are representative of the sin of each circle of hell.

For instance, hell’s second circle, Lust, is populated by the scariest prostitutes you’ve ever, or will ever see. Gluttony, meanwhile, the third circle, is manned by horrifically obese creatures that put Yokozuna to shame. The demons you do battle with are one of the game’s main strengths.

In your first couple hours with the game, the action is fast and frantic, especially at the start, where the levels have this epic feel about them; the ground crumbling and the massiveness of hell’s landscape exploding into full view.

Unfortunately, the action just tapers off from there, until it just becomes a hellish dragfest by the time you reach the game’s latter half.

This game gets repetitive once you’ve gotten the hang of the fighting. The game’s later levels don’t have nearly the same epic impact as the ones in the start, which just adds to the tedium.

The developers try to break up the monotony with some puzzles, which would have been great had they not been clunky and uninspired.

It’s really too bad that Dante’s Inferno didn’t exactly fulfill its promise. It’s based on some great material, one that rivals God of War’s Greek mythology, but its inability to keep the action rising and work towards an epic climax keeps it from becoming ranked in the pantheon of the greatest action games.

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WORDS BY: GELO GONZALES

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