From Interplay

Brief Description

You are Drake, and you are in the ruins of Stonekeep. You must find and rescue Thera, who has been trapped by the Shadowking. The game includes a novel which explains more about the world, Thera and Stonekeep.

The game is a real-time roleplaying game. The graphics, sound effects and music are amazing. The sound is in stereo, so you can tell there is water trickling off to the left, or that there is a monster patrolling on your right.

Game play

The game is in real time, things continue to happen as you wander. There are wandering monsters and those set to guard specific things. The first priorities in your game are to find weapons, armour, and the magical journal.

Basic game play is very simple. Use the arrow keys to move around, use the mouse to pick up, equip, and fight. Right and left mouse clicks do different things, so practice and remember which hand holds the weapon when you get into a fight.

At this point, it looks as though you can clear levels of monsters as you progress. This is good, I hate it when you fight never-ending hordes of monsters. My current favourite fighting technique is to stand at a door and throw things at the monsters within. They can't come out of their room to get you, so you're fairly safe until you run out of things to throw.

Look for movable stones in the wall. These stones frequently move to reveal either items or switches. The items are very useful, the switches open up blocked passages. Also, you should search rubble laying on the floor. To do so, you punch it, which feels a bit weird. However, there are frequently goodies hidden in those piles, ignore them at your own peril.

I really like the magic journal. It automatically tracks everything for you. This includes the player stats, clues, items you have found, and maps Stonekeep. Another very nice feature is that you can easily add your own notes. Click on a room in the journal and you can write down the fact that it contains a fountain of healing. Click after an item to add your own notes about what it is. The game provides a large number of shortcut keys to let you get at specific pieces of the journal at any one time. I haven't played the game often enough to memorise these, there 10 shortcuts which is a lot to remember in real-time.

Save the game often. In the first few levels, it is very easy for Drake to die. If not because he's a bit inexperienced, then sometimes it's because the monsters are ganging up on him.

Gripes about the game

None yet.


I find this to be a very intense game. The graphics and sound effects do create enough of a mood that you feel you are in the game. A side effect of this is that I find I only play this game for about an hour or so at a stretch. More than that and I start twitching because there are monsters in the room with me. It does have a very realistic feel.

This is one of those times when recommendations are a bit hard to decide on. If you really enjoy multi-character turn-based roleplaying games, there are no promises that you'll like this. If you enjoy action/arcade games and want to try role-playing, this should be an excellent choice.

Some final thoughts on the game.

None yet.