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North American NES box art.

Shadowgate is a puzzle adventure game created by ICOM Simulations and ported to a bunch of platforms. My favorite is the NES release.


I own this game on the NES and have beaten it.


Overall: 5/10


  • The game has great artwork and the NES port has wonderful music.
  • The interface is nicely intuitive.
  • The script is well-written, and a lot of the scenes are pretty scary.
  • The sphinx is a nice addition adds more depth and make use of the otherwise useless items.
  • The magic spells are a nice addition.


  • It's far too easy to die. Thankfully, the game is pretty forgiving with the reloading.
  • There is a bit of anachronism which ruins some of the Medieval fantasy feel.
  • Due to the style of the game, there isn't much replay value.
  • There are a lot of useless items that clutter up the inventory, which adds a little complexity to the puzzle solving, but is really annoying.
  • The spells are usually only used in a single place in the game, making them kind of arbitrary.
  • I don't like the unnecessary timer added by the torches. It requires you to have to reset the game until you get good enough to progress further.


  • There are a couple puzzles whose solutions don't make any sense at all and require you to try every item on everything else. Other puzzles have solutions that only become apparent after you've been killed, which ruins the idea of a single-life run.