One of the first point-and-click games to hit the markets and one that shaped the entire genre for decades to come, Shadowgate is finally able to make a reappearance through the Kickstarter platform. Massively updating the graphics and UI with current-gen capabilities, the new Shadowgate looks amazing compared to other point-and-click adventures, and absolutely blows its predecessors out of the water. The dev team is careful to mention that they did everything they could to respect the original, but do not intend to make another port for the game and went to painstaking lengths to get the rights to the original game and soundtrack—something that shows that they care deeply for the series, and have already went to their own lengths to revamp it.
Although the game has seen a few ports and remakes in the past, this new game will feature a new plot, new features, entirely new graphics, and an improved soundtrack—all while keeping some of the characteristic items of its past. The lead developers, Karl Roelofs and Dave Marsh, have always participated in the development of past games and spinoffs, and hope to provide a new experience for Shadowgate fans and new players alike by providing new puzzles and riddles for players to solve. Although they have been absent from the video game development scene for almost two decades, this Kickstarter shows that they still know exactly what it takes to make a quality game and intend to make a new Shadowgate game comparable to current-gen games.
The graphics have seen an incredible boost, and if it manages to get funded, it would be one of the industry’s prettiest point-and-click games to date. The backgrounds and animations alone show that they’ve put an incredible amount of time into rendering the game already. While the UI could certainly use an improvement (it presently looks like one of those late 90s educational games), it still vastly outclasses its predecessors and shows that the game has an improved usability. The game will provide both a cinematic score and an 8-bit score, though whether they will appear as sound options or get unlocked at the end of the game is still unknown.
As with all point-and-click games, you will mainly play the game by picking up objects and interacting with the environment through your mouse in order to solve puzzles. However, ‘commands’ are also listed in the features as a way to extensively interact with the game—so hopefully we’ll get something like a point-and-click game combined with a rogue-like. Commands in any shape or form (typed, clicked, or otherwise) would set it apart from modern point-and-click games, which usually give very little insight to the world beyond its graphics and perhaps a few sentences of dialogue when interacting with objects.
Overall, the Kickstarter preview of the game is incredibly impressive, and the fact that the developers have already secured rights to the original soundtrack and game show that they’ve already heavily invested in the game. Although $120,000 is a lot to ask for a point-and-click game, the amount of care they portrayed in their video shows that they will use every last cent of that to develop the game. The Kickstarter is already halfway to its goal, so if you’re interested in any of the limited physical rewards, be sure to give the campaign a browse!