“I found myself within a forest dark, for the straightforward pathway had been lost…” ~Dante

They say this quote is somewhat akin to describing what someone sees when they are first dead. Strange and horrifying images, doorways to nowhere, places that should not exist and people who should be long since gone all appear along this nonexistent path. What else this journey entails is for you alone to find out, just know that there is no other way to go but forward.

Is this making sense? No? Then all is as it should be. The PS3 exclusive Datura is a game focused on interaction and choices. In it, the player will be able to touch and interact with the environment through special use of the Playstation Move device (though it is also compatible with the dualshock controller) and through this discover the deeper story held within. It is as much a venture of choices and decisions as it is an art form of imagery. Some describe this game as a mystery, others an adventure (somewhat comparative to Myst); and then there are those who  simply call it an experience.  However, if the title is any indication of what this game will entail, we may be in for a deranged ride.

For those who may not know, Datura is a species of large plant with alternating leaves and vertically standing bell shaped flowers (often found in white, yellow, pink and pale purple).  This species, also known as a moonflower, is a member of the “witch’s weeds” in company with deadly nightshade and mandrake and is often used as an ingredient in many love potions and other spells. What truly makes this enticing flower interesting is that it is not only beautiful, it is deadly. Due to the tropane alkaloids that exist within the seeds and flower of Datura, it has been used as a poison and hallucinogen for years and in more severe circumstances has been found to cause delirium (inability to decipher between fantasy and reality) and even death. Additional side effects of ingestion include possible hypothermia, bizarre or violent behavior, photophobia (painful intolerance to light) and even cases of amnesia.

Minor botany lesson aside, Datura looks to be a near hands on gaming experience where every action causes a certain and unavoidable reaction. Will you make the right choice? What consequences await you for choosing unwisely? As the very forest around you shifts with every thought and action, you may or may not be imagining the woods closing in and becoming darker with every step. Questions abound as anxiety rises minute by excruciating minute. They say every individual is left to weave their own path in life – where will this tale take you?

(Look for Datura for download on PSN May 8, 2012 [US], May 9 [Europe])

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