Home » Mediterranea Inferno (Xbox Series X | S Xbox One Digital)

Mediterranea Inferno (Xbox Series X | S Xbox One Digital)

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Mediterranea Inferno (Xbox Series X | S Xbox One Digital)

The game

February 2020: the three inseparable friends Claudio, Andrea and Mida arrive for a night of madness in a Milanese club, welcomed with envy and admiration by the other patrons. The three homosexual boys are in fact the life of the party wherever they go, bringing with them sunshine, fun and transgression; it is no coincidence that they were nicknamed “The Boys of the Sun”. But while the three give their best in the Milanese nights, the specter of the pandemic looms over Italy and the world. And then comes the lockdown.

Two years of isolation and restrictions on social contact pass, an infinite period that has inevitably distanced the three boys – now in their twenties – who literally lived on high life. Mida managed to escape the chains of the lockdown by traveling abroad and becoming a famous model and influencer, Claudio had to deal with the death of his grandfather, a famous tailor taken away prematurely by Covid, while Andrea was the one who suffered the most lack of sociality. It is precisely the latter who, in August 2022, sends a shy message to his two friends proposing a holiday together to rekindle that dormant friendship. Everyone likes the idea, and Claudio suggests spending a week in his late grandfather’s villa in Martina Franca in Puglia. The Boys of the Sun thus set off for an experience in which they hope to find themselves again from two years earlier, but where they will instead have to deal with their anxieties and fears, and where they will realize that their friendship wasn’t that strong after all. as they thought.

MX Video – Mediterranean Hell

A mysterious entity that appears first to Claudio, during his bus journey to Puglia, and subsequently to the others, has a hand in their fragile relationship. This is revealed to them twice a day for the entire duration of the holiday, in the morning and in the evening, suggesting that the children consume a “mirage fruit” (which looks like a chrome-plated prickly pear) which, once consumed , transports them into a sort of dreamlike reality in which they relive parts of their past, present or simply a projection of their anguish and hopes, in an extremely realistic way. But this entity, which in the course of history will also reveal his name, will not offer his mirages to everyone: each time he will reveal himself only to those who have managed to satisfy their needs, making them consume the fruit.

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In fact, this represents the heart of the game’s mechanics which determine the development of the story and which then lead to different endings: during the holiday, in the morning and in the evening the three boys discuss what to do during the day and at night, with two conflicting proposals. Each time two boys propose something different to do (for example, on the first day Claudio proposes going to the beach, while Mida suggests the swimming pool to have more shade due to his sensitive skin), while the third takes one of the two proposals. Depending on the option we choose, the one who made the “winning” proposal will be the most satisfied and will also receive the fruit of the mirage, while the other will feel betrayed. These choices influence the story not only in what we choose to do but also by changing specific subsequent sequences; they will also influence the ending, because the mysterious entity initially explains that only those who have eaten at least three fruits will be able to ascend to Paradise, changing the events at the end of the game. It is therefore up to us to choose, from time to time, who to favor in the choices: it is also possible to distribute them equally so that all three experience at least three mirages each, but personally I was guided each time by what I considered to be the best choices, ending to favor (not without some regret) one of them.

Furthermore, during the mirages we can find hidden objects which, when clicked, allow us to collect real holy cards which will then allow us to have access to the “hidden ending” of the game: I can already tell you that, during a game, you will not be able to collect enough of them, and you will therefore have to start the story again (the holy cards collected are retained) by making different choices to collect more and thus arrive at having a sufficient number for this further ending.

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From a gameplay perspective Mediterranean Hell classifiable as a visual novel, therefore a game that is little more than an interactive comic, with a sequence of static images or in any case with very reduced animations, where the story is narrated through the textual dialogues of the protagonists (obviously in Italian) and where we can interact – especially in the mirage phases – by clicking on arrows that allow us to move to a different location or by clicking on various objects specially marked on the screen, sometimes with the presence of light puzzles. There is no character to move, the focus is entirely on the narrative of the story and the choices we make. And obviously, as you will read below, much of the game’s charm comes from its dreamlike artistic structure.

Amore

Mediterranean hell

– Since it is a “pure” visual novel, Mediterranean Hell focuses solely on narrative, and succeeds great. The story created by Redaelli is not only very interesting, offering us a glimpse of the hopes, anxieties and fears of the post-Covid generation Z, but it also manages to be disturbing by touching on delicate topics such as sexuality, death and violence. The three protagonists have very different characters and needs, which attracted them in the past but which, as often happens, also leads them to conflict, while the mirages are rich in symbolism and references to Italian culture (don’t miss the one of the cemetery!) . An extremely intimate story that is worth following if you are interested in this type of experience.

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The colors of Hell

– Much of the charm of Mediterranean Hell given by the visual style adopted, which combines simple lines of oriental inspiration with vivid colors to give life to psychedelic and dreamlike scenarios, not only during the mirages which obviously become even more surreal. The three boys’ holiday appears like a long dream from start to finish, full of images that recall Apulian locations and elements of popular Italian symbolism (such as our “Madonnina”), but also references to contemporary symbols such as the frequent use of mobile phones .

Inferno queer

– The willingness to address issues dear to the LGBTQ+ community is also extremely appreciable, representing a world far from many of us but which, ultimately, on an emotional and interpersonal level can present extremely common problems and situations. The relationships between the three boys are extremely fascinating and can lead to more than one reflection.

I hate it

Some interface problems

– Over the course of the game I occasionally found myself lost between the various interactive points to click or having a little trouble switching from one to the other, but these are minor problems in an experience that has generally been free of real problems.

Let’s sum it up

Mediterranean Hell it offers us a narrative experience with a low rate of interaction but with an extremely interesting and meaningful story, enriched by an evocative artistic section. It is not suitable for everyone both due to the classic visual novel structure and the themes covered (there are also disturbing moments or moments with sexual references), but if you have the right sensitivity for this type of work, you cannot miss this fascinating contemporary novel. .

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