Tuesday, March 4, 2008


The long wait is over for the proud comeback of Return to Dark Castle, the craze among Mac gamers in the late 80s, after a website released its demo version for download.

Super Happy Fun Fun promises that the full game will be released "very, VERY soon" and in the meantime gave avid followers of Prince Duncan a taste of the Castle's much-improved gen X version.

The game has been in development for several years by Z Sculpt Entertainment. In January, Super Happy Fun Fun -- which developed the cell phone version -- announced plans to release the Mac version in early 2008.

Return to Dark Castle is the latest installment of a game series that originally appeared on black-and-white Macs in 1986.

A 2D platformer, the game puts you in the role of an intrepid hero who has to make his way through a castle filled with rats, flying bats, birds, haunted suits of armor, weird creatures on a quest to slay the evil Black Knight. Along the way you have to retrieve magic orbs and defeat your enemies using bags of rocks and other objects.

In 1987 it was followed by Beyond Dark Castle, and a helicopter backpack and an excess of explosives kept things interesting, if not addictive. Various versions and ports came out in years following, extending the longevity of the classic game even further. 1994 even saw a Color Dark Castle, still playable in Classic under 10.0 and 10.1, and 2006 brought a mobile version.

Return to Dark Castle sports more than 50 brand-new levels including all 30 levels from the original Dark Castle and its sequel, Beyond Dark Castle, remastered and integrated into a new quest. The game features new secret rooms and mini-games. System requirements call for Mac OS X v10.3.9 or later, G3/500MHz or faster processor, 128MB RAM, 100MB hard disk space.

Fans say "Return" feels almost identical to its Mac gaming canon ancestors, with the same sharp controls and the old sound effects from 1986 and 1987

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