The Kingdom Of Thornwood
"Please, Father, don't deny me. It's been one year to the day since I last visited the Shrine. I wish to meditate to honor the soul of my mother. You must let me go! I beg you!"
King Drake found it difficult to deny his lovely daughter anything. "Very well - but you will not go alone!"
The King summoned Mortred, his bravest and most loyal knight, to the Throne room. "Mortred, I'd be grateful
if you'd agree to escort Princess Jessa. She wishes to go to the Shrine in the village. I anticipate no danger, but I must be cautious. Will you do me this favor, my most trusted servant?"
"I'll guard the Princess with my life. Fear not, my liege. She is safe in my company."
They walked to the Shrine, and Mortred waited outside while Jessa meditated. She stepped out into the warm light of the afternoon, looked around and said "Mortred, it's such a lovely day. Why don't we take a walk? I don't want to spend a day as pleasant as this cooped up in that dreary old castle. Please?"
Against his better judgment, Mortred agreed. They headed away from the village, into the wild country beyond.
"For some reason, Father has never told me about this area. I've always longed to know its history. Would you tell me, Mortred?"
"Many legends are told about this wilderness. For as long as anyone can remember, it has served as a training ground for knights. Any knight who passes the many grueling tests here becomes a Shining Knight."
The Princess was delighted. "Tell me more..."
Now, over 24 hours have passed, without a sign of Mortred and Princess Jessa. The King is beside himself with worry. You, as Mortred's son (and a fine knight in your own right) volunteer to find your father and the Princess. King Drake and his aides are at the castle, awaiting your arrival...
--from the Sega Genesis Shining in the Darkness instruction manual
Shining in the Darkness was actually the first installment in the series by Climax, with Shining Force as the second. I say that because most people actually played Shining Force
first. Shining in the Darkness was also one of the earliest 3D RPGs ever made.
Dark Sol has kidnapped the daughter of the King of Thornwood. The King, following the advice of his wizard, charges you with rescuing her . The King knows that your father was a great knight and expects the same from you. You have a couple of friends that are going to help you on your quest: Milo and Pyra. From what you guys can gather Dark Sol has taken
the princess somewhere inside the Labyrinth.
I liked the 3D looking graphics. I don't think they were really 3D like we mean today, but it's the end result that really counts. The backgrounds in the game looked exceptionally good. One of the main things you'll probably remember about Shining in the Darkness is the sound. Besides music, Climax threw in some sound bytes for certain attacks and
magic, and the infamous booming ring of an enemy appearing on screen. I thought Shining in the Darkness was an excellent game, and I recommend it to anyone that likes RPG's.
Thornwood has three basic destinations - Town, Castle, and Labyrinthe. In the Town you can shop, talk to NPCs at the Tavern, revive or cure characters and save. At the Castle you're given clues as to your next objective. The Labyrinthe is the game's massive, sprawling dungeon that spans somewhere from eight to nine floors with several traps, hidden items, and secret rooms. It is also chock full of countless monsters that just can't wait to eat you and your friends. The enemies in the Labyrinthe pop up through random encounters. The battle system is the same as most RPG's, menus that consist of
Spell, Attack, Item, or Run. Milo and Pyra are your spell users. Milo focuses on healing while Pyra focuses on elemental. There are several side quests and hidden items that give it good replayability.
|These weapons aren't always the strongest weapon for Milo, but they will ALWAYS attack twice per turn. Unlike the whips, the flail can not only attack more than 1 enemy in the same group, but it can also attack enemies in other groups and hit the same enemy twice on the same turn. The "Great Flail" is the best of the flails and is technically the "best" weapon for Milo to use throughout the game.|