Last year, the Dante’s Inferno video game garnered an abundant amount of press (to show that they weren’t messing around, EA even had a Super Bowl ad spotÂ for their video game epic), with seemingly mixed reviews — Â could it be entertaining enough for the video gamers and contain any reasonable semblance to The Divine Comedy to satisfy those who care about it? Â This bit from aÂ New York Times review certainly indicated that the former at least was an open question: “In a survey of 800 people, Mr. Marineau said, 83 percent said they had heard of Danteâ€™s â€œInferno,â€ the first book of his â€œDivine Comedy,â€ but fewer than 20 percent could explain its contents.” The idea of a butt-kicking action hero Dante seems pretty novel, but I’ll probably stick with my Oxford World’s Classics edition over the EA one, just the same.
There’s at least one university course that is exploring the parallels between Virgil’s Aeneid and Halo. Â On the notion of interactive storytelling, Roger Travis at the University of Connecticut makes a good point:Â â€œThe popular notion that video games are unique in their interactivity overlooks a tradition well over 2,000 years old.â€ Travis’ blog, Living Epic, is a pleasing nexus of gaming meets classical studies. Sometimes I love the internet for being able to find things like this.
American McGee's Alice 2
When browsing through this ratherÂ thorough list of literature-related video games (although it uses the term “literature” very, very loosely in many cases), I couldn’t help but notice that Sherlock Holmes and Alice in Wonderland** recur with great frequency — which makes some sense; fantasy world exploration and mysteries seem to lend themselves well to video game adaptation. But, I’m sure most of these other games on the list suck. Just saying.
* Here’s a link to the backstory behind the Gatsby “NES” game (“Debunking The Great Gatsby Game Creation Myth“)