BioWare Animator Creates Gorgeous ‘Dante’s Inferno’ Short Film

“BioWare animator Tal Peleg released a new animated (NSFW) short film based on Visceral Games’ 2010 action title ‘Dante’s Inferno’ on Sunday.

“The game was loosely based on Dante Alighieri’s long narrative poem The Divine Comedy. But, it reimagines the poet as a Templar knight who goes on a bloody journey through the nine circles of Hell to rescue Beatrice from Lucifer.

“Peleg created his first ‘Dante’s Inferno’ fan fiction short four years ago. As a lover of both fantasy/medieval art and action-RPGs, he said in a recent behind-the-scenes blog post the game couldn’t have come out at a better time.” […]    –Stefanie Fogel, Variety, November 20, 2018

 

When Seagulls Cry (2007)

Umineko no Naku Koro ni is a Japanese visual novel developed by 07th Expansion. The title translates to When Seagulls Cry in English. The series was released in Japan from 2007-2011, and globally through 2016-2017.

“The story focuses on a group of eighteen people on a secluded island for a period of two days, and the mysterious murders that befall them. Readers are challenged to discern whether the murders were committed by a human or of some other supernatural source, as well as the method and motive behind them.” [. . .]    —Umineko When They Cry, Wikipedia, 2018.

Fans of the series have pointed out several references to Dante’s work in the series, such as these found by readers on MyAnimeList:

“I’ve started reading Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy few days ago and I found several analogies with Umineko.

  1. “Names:
    Beatrice – name of deceased Dante’s love, his guide through Heaven
    Virgil – name of Dante’s guide through Hell and Purgatorio
  2. “Structure of Mt. Purgatorio is of the form 2+7+1=9+1=10, with one of the ten regions different in nature from the other nine ( last – Earthly Paradise). It may resemble 10 twilights of the Witch’s Epitaph.
  3. “Dante meets Beatrice at 10th floor, Battler meets Beato at 10th twilight
  4. “Seven Stakes resemble floors 3rd- 9th of Mt. Purgatorio (each floor represents 1 of 7 deadly sins.)
  5. “Magic circles in Umineko have a same names as the Spheres of Heaven:
    First Sphere of the Moon –> First Circle of the Moon” [. . .]    —Azakus, MyAnimeList, October 11, 2009.

To see more of the Dante references fans of When Seagulls Cry have found, check out the full forum discussion on MyAnimeList.

You can buy When Seagulls Cry and check out other games in the series on Steam.

Contributed by Philip Smith (University of the Bahamas)

The Binding of Isaac, Rebirth (2014)

“Within the video game The Binding of Isaac, Satan is located in the 9th level of the game; Hell is described as ‘cold’ if the player dies on this level (both mirroring Inferno).”    –Anonymous Contributor

The Binding of Isaac, Rebirth is a 2014 video game published by Nicalis, an American publisher based out of Santa Ana, California.

You can check out more from Nicalis on their website, and you can buy The Binding of Isaac on Steam and on Humble.

Agony Interview: The Evolution of Inferno

 

Divine Comedy was the first book that impressed me so much by describing very deep and complex world. When I read this book, I was hoping that someday I will have a chance to create similar world, full of evil beings and surreal environment. That vision grows in me for years. But creating a game place in hell requires lots of preparation.

“Every person who plays our game has a different imagination of hell. People are well aware of the classic image of hell full of horned demons, lake of fire and tears of thousands of suffering people.” []   –Tomasz Dutkiewicz on the survival horror game Agony in an interview with Ravi Sinha, Gamingbolt, January 11, 2013.

Read the full interview at Gamingbolt.

Silent Hill 2

“[There] is a video-game that came out in 2001 called Silent Hill 2.  The game is part of a series, but the second game is usually best remembered.  The town called Silent Hill is not officially called “Hell” but it functions the same way.  The protagonist, James Sunderland, doesn’t have a guide like Dante does, but he does meet a variety of people along the way, each one afflicted by their own guilt.  The town has a way of bringing guilt into physical manifestation, taking the form of various hideous-looking monsters.  The allusion to hell occurs when James goes BELOW the town, taking elevators and stairwells deeper, deeper, and deeper than should even be conceivably possible.”   –Samuel Gray

Contributed by Samuel Gray, University of Mary Washington, ’18

The Nine Circles of Xbox Live Hell

“Commenter Firescorpio takes us on a (somewhat misspelled) journey through the nine circles of Xbox Live hell, a path that transforms an innocent online gamer into a foaming, frothing, enjoyment-destroying fuckwit in today’s infographic-tastic edition of Speak-Up on Kotaku.”    –Mike Fahey, Kotaku, January 16, 2012

Rachel Rossin, “n=7/The Wake in Heat of Collapse”

n=7

“SIGNAL is pleased to present Rachel Rossin’s ‘n=7 / The Wake in Heat of Collapse,’ a virtual reality simulation that employs the structure of side-scrolling gameplay to create an immersive, Oculus Rift-based experience.

“Descending into a 3-dimensional Dantesque underworld, the viewer navigates a landscape of hacked architectural and video game imagery, algorithmic collages generated from famous paintings (e.g. Guernica and Klimt’s The Kiss), corporate signage, browser logos and clippings from scenic destinations. These radiant environments provide participants with a window to sights unseen, and culminate with the experience of witnessing a crumbling staircase made of Susan Sontag’s ‘Against Interpretation.'”    —Signal’s website

Click here to read about Rossin’s exhibit in The New York Times.

Fede Alvarez, Dante’s Inferno Movie

Fede AlvarezFede Alvarez, Uruguayan director of Evil Dead, will be directing a live-action movie adaptation of Electronic Arts’ 2010 video game, Dante’s Infernofor Universal Pictures.

Alvarez himself confirmed the rumors in an interview with Collider.com, in which he says:

“It sounds like that might be the next film.  We’re super excited about everything on that movie.  It’s with Universal.  Jay Basu’s the writer, he did great work on the script, we worked together on the story.  We’ve got a great script already and we’re about to start casting the film.  So it’s pretty close, pretty exciting.  Basically we’re making a film based on the biggest mythology about hell ever; the biggest poem about hell.  So it’s really something that is super exciting, and it’s not the hell you’ve seen before.  It’s completely different form whatever you think.  It’s one of those films that if you expect to see lava and caves, you’re not going to get that, it’s a completely new realm and new universe.  Horror fans will dig it, because for me it was a good transition to go from Evil Dead to go and do something that is more a big adventure, but set in hell, so of course it’s pretty hardcore just because it’s hell itself.  So it’s pretty cool.  It’s a cool movie.” — Interview with Haleigh Foutch, “Fede Alvarez Talks From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series, Working with Robert Rodriguez, Evil Dead 2MachinaDante’s Inferno, and More,” Collider (May 6, 2014)

See also: Dante Today’s post about the EA video game.

Contributed by Sarah Montross

To Hell and Back: EA’s Guerrilla Marketing Campaign for Dante’s Inferno

dantes-inferno“The road to hell is paved with good intentions. Take, for example, the marketing of Electronic Arts’s blockbuster new video game, Dante’s Inferno. Last year, the company set about trying to educate the public not only about the game but about a 14th-century literary classic and the very nature of human morality. What ensued was one of the most complex campaigns in video-game history, one that got EA burned for fakery and sexism, and then—thanks to a bold change of direction—lauded for intellect and creativity. It’s also a case study in surprising frugality, with a $200,000 guerrilla budget that yielded 47 million impressions of coverage. Today, AdFreak walks you through the nine circles of hell with the man who led the innovative and controversial marketing campaign for Dante’s Inferno. So, put on your asbestos gloves and get ready to descend into damnation, after the jump.” []    –David Griner, AdWeek, February 24, 2010

“Shadows of the Damned” Video Game Review

shadows-of-the-damned-review “Unrestrained. That just about sums up Shadows of the Damned. A surreal, indulgent collaboration between Killer7 director Suda51 and Resident Evil creator Shinji Mikami, Shadows of the Damned mixes the personal oeuvre of its creators without much thought for consequence. Stylish but vulgar. Inventive but mechanically routine. Contradictions lie in Shadows’ black heart. The thought of an auteur such as Suda51 embracing an attitude of punk-rock video game making is thrilling, but such exuberance needs channelling. Killer7 was focussed insanity; No More Heroes was shrouded in existential irony. Shadows of the Damned is a mariachi retelling of Dante’s Inferno with knob gags and big guns. You perhaps see the issue” […]    –Tom Higgins, The Telegraph, July 05, 2011