Quick quiz. Look at the two pictures below. Now tell me which one of the men is medieval poet Dante Alghieri, author of La Divina Commedia?
The answer is, of course, both of them. I have been playing Dante’s Inferno on PS3 and got myself so excited I just have to blog. I’ve been interested in this game since I first saw the trailer, with its fabulous “Go to Hell” shoutline. On reflection, Dante’s Hell seems custom made for adaptation to a video game, what with the nine circles and all. Before proceeding, though, I need to acknowledge all those people who are reading this and thinking “but it’s just a re-skin of God of War“. Yes, I understand it is, and there’s a great review article that deals with that issue here. Now, let it go.
My excitement is more about the fact that popular culture has now given Dante a giant weapon (it’s Death’s scythe, if you must know) and eye-popping muscles, and made him so unbelievably b’dass, so mighty to the power of win, so incredibly l33t and awesomezor. He’s a medieval poet, for chrissake! I love seeing elite culture adapted into popular forms at any time, but to reimagine a lily-skinned, soft-fingered poet as an action hero is just so very cool. But that’s not all. Virgil, the Roman poet, also turns up as Dante’s guide, and he too is ripped (though in ghostly form). What’s next? An RPG about Chopin?