"Shadowgate Classic is an excellent port of the original 8-bit NES version of the same game; but, unfortunately, it's lacking in the gameplay department when compared to most modern games."
Shadowgate is quite possibly the eeriest game I've ever played on the original 8-bit Nintendo. It has some of the most haunting music in any video game I've played to this day. Some of the music is beautiful, yet freaky at the same time. Some of the songs are just plain satanic. I often found myself wondering what could have possibly gone through the mind of the music composer. Maybe some of the music was inspired from some his (or her) nightmares. I wouldn't doubt it. In any case, the eerie music really adds to the game's atmosphere.
It's been a very long time since I've played the NES version, so I was very excited to hear that a ''Shadowgate Classic'' was soon to be released on the Gameboy Color. Immediately I had a flood of memories of that first night I played the game and couldn't sleep because I was hooked on the game (the fact that a tornado almost hit my house that night might've also had something to do with that loss of sleep).
As far as ports are concerned, Shadowgate Classic is an excellent port of the NES version. The gameplay is intact. The graphics look almost exactly the same. The music is just as eerie was it ever was. (Grim Reaper still freaks me out.) The game is almost perfectly like the NES one. The only problem I have with Shadowgate Classic is playing it on the Gameboy color (the screen is too small for most of the menus). The in-game menus are now differently located. You have to access your items and spells on a separate screen (instead of one big screen). It's not that big of a problem (if you consider that a problem at all), but it is a hassle if you're used to it not being that way in the NES version.
As a game on its own (not compared to any version of the game), it's somewhat lacking compared to more modern games. One of the most noticeable areas it's lacking is in the gameplay department. You don't run, jump, fight enemies, move things, or anything of the like. You mainly just go room to room, solving basic puzzles, and gathering things (somewhat like Myst, only more limited). It's set in a first person perspective few. (That basically sums up the gameplay.) It may not sound like there's much to the game, but solving some of the basic puzzles is actually fun at times.
I don't have much to say about the graphics and sound, except that they are very 8-bit. There's nothing flashy about this game at all. It looks and sounds almost exactly like it did on the old NES, so don't expect any new, big surprises. If you have a problem with very old looking games, then you might want to stay away from this one; however, if you can have an open mind and overlook the graphics and sound, you might find a fun game underneath.
It's a very good port of the NES version, and it's an average game at best compared to what all else is available for the Gameboy Color. I would suggest at least renting it if you've never played any version of the game before. It's short, so you could probably beat it in one weekend. I also recommend it for anyone wanting a good, portable version of the NES game. It succeeds immensely in that particular area.
Community review by icelake (Date unavailable)
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