Shadowgate (2014)

Shadowgate was a formative experience in my early youth. A brutally difficult NES RPG, it was the first time I played what was effectively a video game version of the Choose-Your-Own-Adventure books I’d been enjoying. When I say it was difficult, I mean it — it took me more than one sitting to get through the door at the very beginning of the game! I don’t think I ever managed to complete the game, despite my efforts.

I’d heard about the 2014 remake of the game, but never got round to playing it until a few days ago. The artwork is miles ahead of the original (obviously). It might not to be everyone’s tastes – it was very “concept art” style in many places. I found this led to many aspects of a room being missed at first inspection. The story is pretty much the same, perhaps with a few tweaks. There’s a little more “world building” than the original, I think?

The biggest departure was the difficulty. Despite the game retaining many of the same “frustratingly non-obvious solution” mechanics of the original, I managed to complete it in one sitting. I only died twice! (stupid Goblin…) Granted, it did extend into the early hours of the next morning, and I have over 20 years extra problem solving experience than I did when playing the original, but still…

At the current Steam price of <£3 for the edition that comes with all sorts of extras, it still gets a recommendation of worth your time if you’re nostalgic, or just fancy a new RPG game. I’m not sure I’d spend much more than that, given how short it turned out to be, but who am I to tell you what to do with your money?

You can find Shadowgate on Steam, here