5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Fun, solid, but not earth-shattering,
This review is from: Dante's Inferno (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
Dante's Inferno is primarily an action-adventure fighting game played from a third-person view - similar to Devil May Cry or Bayonetta - with platforming and environment-based puzzles thrown in to break up some of the levels. You control Dante, armed with Death's scythe a Holy Cross that fires a volley of energy as a projectile attack, and magic based attacks, you must journey through the nine circles of Hell to reclaim the soul of your beloved Beatrice from the hands of Lucifer.
I approached this game with a relatively open mind. I've never played the God Of War games (which I hear Dante's Inferno has `borrowed' heavily from), but I'd enjoyed other fighting games such as Devil May Cry, Bayonetta and Castlevania. I liked the look of the art style, the demo was good fun, so I picked it up.
The first thing that struck me was the presentation, the good voice acting and the fluid combat. It didn't seem too challenging to be able to clear hordes of enemies with a few simple button presses. As a fan of horror, I found the presentation of the environments even more impressive Dante descended into hell..... but then things started to unravel a little....
The art style that started off so impressively, and remained so, did become quite samey as the story progressed. A later level set in a forest helped to break up the presentation, but many of the other levels are simply a series of similar-looking corridors that lead into open rooms to allow for an inevitable onslaught of baddies. The environmental puzzles were fun to start with, but boil down to turning levers, switiching switches, or moving blocks, and seem thrown in just to give you something else to do other than kill things. These sections are also hampered by frequently bad camera angles which often lead to unfair trial-by-error deaths. I found the combat in the earlier levels was frustrating, but it took a little perseverance and practice. Ultimately I found the combat to be one of the most rewarding and fair systems I've encountered in this genre, and the skill-tree that you can use to upgrade Dante's abilities was well thought out - do you upgrade your evil powers which improve your scythe attacks, or do you upgrade your good powers which improve your long-range cross attacks? Sure, it is no match for Bayonetta's outrageousness, but the fighting engine is solid and fair, and it is one of the few systems which really made me want to push myself to improve my skills and beat the opponents, rather than slam the joypad down in anger when I was defeated.
I played through Dante's Inferno on the default difficultly so my views are based on a complete 10-12 hour playthrough. Overall I recommend Dante's Inferno, but there are some minor points that detracted from my enjoyment. If you're a fan of fighting games and have a penchant for the grotesque, this is well worth a look.