Labyrinth: Secrets of ShadowHaven
Yesterday, the sun went out, and while we don't want to resort to stereotyping, it seems like that dark and ominous castle, whose ever-changing walls conceal magical orbs of evil power untold, fueled by the suffering of those trapped in a forever midnight, might have something to do with it. But fortunately, a hero, armed with naught but determination, guile, and the general advantages of being a cute, scampering, demon-thingy, will enter the castle, defeat its inhabitants, destroy the orbs, and, most likely, pick up some sweet upgrades along the way! It's Labyrinth: Secrets of ShadowHaven, a roguelike platformer by Nick Pasto and Luis Castanon.
Use the [arrow] keys to move and climb about the randomly generated levels, using [A] to jump. Each level has a certain number of magic orbs that must be destroyed, either with your basic [S] attack or, if you've found one, the projectile weapons launched with [D]. Each level also contains enemies to kill and treasure chests/crates that contain various power-ups and upgrades. Destroying all the orbs will unlock the door to the level boss fight. It's styled as an endless game, where there's always another castle to fight and another land to rescue, with players competing for the higher score. For this conceit to work, there needs to be a large and attractive pool of locations, enemies, and power-ups to randomly draw from, and fortunately, the game has just that, making for a work just as enjoyable to play as it is to look at. Admittedly, the narrative is a little disappointing, with no real Amulet-Of-Yendor-style endgame to look forward to. Plus, the lack of saves is an annoying omission for the not-quite-so-hardcore gamers like myself. However, Labyrinth: Secrets of ShadowHaven's innate humor and likability sees it through, making for a tough-but-quite-rewarding crawl through its dungeons.