From Sega Retro
|System(s): Sega Mega Drive|
|Publisher: Electronic Arts|
|Developer: Artech Studios|
|Original system(s): Macintosh|
|Developer(s) of original games: Silicon Beach Software|
|Number of players: 1|
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Dark Castle is Sega Mega Drive action platform game developed by Artek Digital Productions and published by Electronic Arts. A port of the classic 1986 Silicon Beach Software game Dark Castle, it was released in 1991 to overwhelmingly negative reception.
While the original home computer versions of Dark Castle controlled the player character with precise mouse control, the home versions instead rotate his arm with a button press, resulting in an exhausting and terribly-imprecise control scheme which renders the game nearly unplayable. Due to this, the game has developed a modern reputation as one of the single-worst titles developed for the Mega Drive - something which has since become strongly associated with the game's modern identity.
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Prince Duncan traverses a treacherous castle to defeat the dreaded Black Knight.
Prince Duncan can run, jump and duck, interact with parts of the scenery and throw a limited number of rocks. Elixirs can be found to protect from animal bites, and acquiring a bag of rocks with replenish his projectiles. Duncan can also equip a magic shield, and upgrade his projectiles to powerful fireballs.
The game is infamous for its weak protagonist. Prince Duncan frequently trips on the scenery, grows dizzy after short falls, and dies in a single hit. To compound things even more, while the original game was designed to aim Duncan’s arm with a computer mouse, the home versions instead rotate his arm with a button. This exhausting control scheme is the primary reason for the poor reception of the Sega Mega Drive port.
|Black Knight 1|
|Black Knight 2|
|Black Knight 3|
The original Macintosh release is considered a classic for that platform; its high-resolution graphics and realistic sound effects were considered groundbreaking, and the game was a critical and commercial success. With this success came the desire for ports to home video game systems. However, the original release was specifically designed to be played with a mouse; something few console ports would take advantage of.
Most non-computer versions of Dark Castle were critically panned on release, with the Mega Drive port being no exception. Having originally been designed for high resolution monochrome graphics and mouse controls, the game now runs with a smaller screen resolution and utilizes slower, D-pad controls. When the Angry Video Game Nerd reviewed the game for his 2012 Halloween special, he said it was "the worst Sega Genesis game I have ever played".
- Producer: Keith Francart
- Product Manager: David Bamberger
- Programming, Music, and Sounds: Artek Digital Productions
- Documentation Layout: Jennie Maruyama
- Quality Assurance: Jonathan Skolnick
- Main article: Dark Castle/Magazine articles.
|Sega Retro Average|
|Mega Drive, AU|
- Main article: Dark Castle/Technical information.
- ↑ https://groups.google.com/g/rec.games.video/c/WQTliK_b27o/m/24qlxLOrrSYJ
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Sega Power, "January 1992" (UK; 1991-12-05), page 49
- ↑ File:DarkCastle MD US manual.pdf, page 6
- ↑ 1700 igr dlya Sega, "" (RU; 2001-xx-xx), page 55
- ↑ Console XS, "June/July 1992" (UK; 1992-04-23), page 128
- ↑ Cool Gamer, "9" (RU; 2002-10-13), page 59
- ↑ Mean Machines: The Essential Sega Guide, "" (UK; 1993-11-18), page 36
- ↑ Gamers, "Februar/März 1992" (DE; 1992-xx-xx), page 48
- ↑ Games-X, "10th-16th October 1991" (UK; 1991-10-10), page 33
- ↑ Joypad, "Novembre 1991" (FR; 1991-10-1x), page 52
- ↑ Joystick, "Novembre 1991" (FR; 1991-1x-xx), page 150
- ↑ Sega Mega Drive Advanced Gaming, "January 1993" (UK; 199x-xx-xx), page 91
- ↑ Mega, "April 1994" (UK; 1994-03-17), page 62
- ↑ Mega Force, "Novembre 1991" (FR; 1991-11-19), page 70
- ↑ Mean Machines, "December 1991" (UK; 1991-11-28), page 176
- ↑ Mean Machines Sega, "October 1992" (UK; 1992-09-xx), page 138
- ↑ Player One, "Novembre 1991" (FR; 1991-xx-xx), page 78
- ↑ Sega Pro, "December 1991" (UK; 1991-11-21), page 69
- ↑ Sega Pro, "April 1993" (UK; 1993-03-11), page 64
- ↑ Supergame, "Novembro 1992" (BR; 1992-11-xx), page 45
- ↑ Tricks 16 bit, "Tricks Sega Gold 800 igr" (RU; 1998-03-20), page 48
- ↑ Video Games, "4/91" (DE; 1991-12-06), page 31
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