Dark Castle

Dark Castle Megadrive
Dark Castle MegaDrive

Was Dark Castle That Bad?

With Dark Castle we are faced with one of the worst games of the Sega 16-bit console and one that does not do justice to the huge catalog that it boasted.

Dark Castle Megadrive Cover

Dark Castle Credits

  • Published by: Electronic Arts
  • Developed by: Silicon Beach Software
  • Producer: Keith Francart
  • Programming: Artek Digital Productions
  • Music & Sound: Artek Digital Productions
  • Released: 1991
  • Also on: Amiga, Atari ST, Commodore 64, DOS, Macintosh
  • Genre: Action, Platform, Fantasy


Dark Castle The Game

Dark Castle was a late conversion of one of the best games released on Mac in 1986. The original, designed by Mark Pierce and programmed by Jonathan Gay, was a beautiful black and white game, while the Mega Drive version, released five years later, is a nonsense created by Electronic Arts. The story tells us that, controlling Prince Duncan, we must go through the fourteen rooms (divided into four areas that we can choose from a central room) that make up the Dark Castle in order to dethrone the evil Black Knight. A whole pot going, come on. The game is a kind of platform adventure for a single player, quite decaffeinated and above all with a difficulty that borders on the absurd.

Dark Castle Megadrive Screenshot central room

The first thing that catches your eye (negatively, of course) are those graphics unworthy of a console like Mega Drive, with a power much higher than what this game shows us. What’s more, the graphic section is even bad for a Master System, which has real works of art in that regard. The bad controls of the main character and the terrible animations (especially when jumping or attacking) do not help anything either. It is that in the other technical sections it continues,  never getting any better. The sounds that accompany the game are horrible and annoying and make you want to throw the console, TV and controls out the window.

For its part, the soundtrack or, rather, the only song in the whole game, is repeated ad nauseam (Tocata y Fugue in D Minor BWV 565 by Johann Sebastian Bach), from the start menu to the end. Although at first it is not at all bad, after a few minutes we feel its deficiencies, it begins to tire and unhinge us more and more. It’s not helped by the absurd difficulty of the game, making its playability one of its worst assets. In Dark Castle they kill you almost by looking at you.

The game is very short, so much so that its ridiculous fourteen rooms are completed in just over ten minutes with the addition that we will not see a sad ending after defeating one of the most useless enemies in the world of video games.

Dark Castle Megadrive Screenshot

Is Dark Castle Naff?

In a word YES!  Within a game that, absolutely everything is bad or very bad, it is quite difficult to opt for a specific reason for it being Naff.  The worst point of the game is probably the graphics, they would disappoint any Mega Drive user, is you consider that the same year they had the pleasure of enjoying the spectacular Sonic The Hedgehog, light years away from this Dark Castle.  The gameplay is not far behind and makes the Electronic Arts title one of the worst releases in history for the Sega 16-bit console one might even say Dark Castle was the worst Mega Drive game.

The only song in the game isn’t bad at all, even though it repeats itself and becomes annoying as the minutes go by. A positive point of the game is that the programmers very wisely decided to introduce the options to disable music and / or sound effects from the start menu. The other positive thing about the game is that while we are sitting in front of it, the original game for Macintosh goes through our minds, voluntarily deceiving our vision and trying to forget the aberration committed with the poor Mega Drive.


2 / 10

Dark Castle Gameplay

Dark Castle Cheat Options

Cheat has not been tested so may not work.

  • Pause the game
  • Press B, C, A, Up, Start, A, and A
  • This should unlock the cheat options and level select

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