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The eternal castle: remastered is a remake for Mac and Windows PC of a classic MS-DOS action game lost in time. Or that's what their developers say, at least. Although it shares the rough and high-contrast aspect of the titles of the time, The eternal castle It was never a true game of the 80s.

Supposedly inspired by a game lost since 1987, The eternal castle: remastered is a difficult side-scrolling adventure game that reminds of the masterpieces of the genre like the Prince of Persia Y Another world. You control a pixelated but fluidly animated character through vacant land, shooting you through dangerous soldiers, traps, monsters and more. Retro visual elements are expertly combined with modern touches, such as crisp sound effects and stereo along with a high-fidelity soundtrack.

These elements can convince you that The eternal castle: remastered It is a tribute to some dark game. The eternal castle It never existed, but the developers are trying to convince us otherwise, so much that mysticism is part of the game itself.

A man fires an assault rifle in a building of approaching assailants.

Despite the dated graphics, the animation is as fluid as any modern game.
Leonard Menchiari, Daniele Vicinanzo, Giulio Perrone

On the Steam page of the game, game director Leonard Menchiari was nostalgic for playing The eternal castle in his youth. He shared his supposed memories in an update of December 2018, which weighs in fantasy:

I was mortified, terrified. He could not tell his parents because he felt so bad about breaking something that mattered so much to him that he did not. As a result, his father sent the computer to be fixed, the piece of metal was gone and all he had left was an unusable broken diskette.

Finally, that floppy discarded, so he could never play that game again. An easy thing to fix, but I was too young to know what to do. He kept thinking about it ever since.

The eternal castle: remastered It is a remake of the impression that this supposed game left on him. However, in the game's press kit, it is clearly stated that the game is an effort to "achieve something that is as close as possible to the dream game (the developers) wish they could play when they were children".

That discrepancy is where things get interesting.

A man jumps from a building to attack someone with an ax.

Leonard Menchiari, Daniele Vicinanzo, Giulio Perrone

On September 15, 2016, a member of the RGB Classic Games Forum called "JohnM" uploaded screenshots and files for a game called The eternal castle. The images looked like a 1987 game, and he mentioned that this weird game was actually "one of the precursors of most next-generation cinematic side scrolls." However, despite the low-resolution screenshots found in the upload, the actual game files themselves did not work, as noted by two other forum members. A day later, a user named "JMenko" loaded similar files in the Internet Archive.

The game did not reappear until October 23, 2017, when a member of the classic Prince of Persia community forum found those files for The eternal castle While looking for other similar action games. They discovered that they could not make the game work. Unlike other people who found the files unusable and went ahead, this user decided to investigate why they were not working.

After an investigation, they learned that the cargo for The eternal castle had files of the original Prince of Persia, a game that would have come out two years later The eternal castle. "What are these files doing in a supposedly 1987 game?" They asked as they explored more. Buried among the files of the game uploaded was also the code for Star control two and the original Condemn, two other games that went well after 1987. The alleged screenshots of The eternal castle It also had Photoshop metadata, which Adobe released for the first time in 1990.

Another anachronistic discovery was found when trying to run the configuration executable for the game. As the application was running, part of the text on the screen referred to a special mode in which DOS can be executed. But DOS did not have that feature until 1989, as a Twitter user pointed out.

But does it really matter if The eternal castle: remasteredIs history a work of fiction?

It is clear that the game was largely inspired by the games on which it supposedly influenced, and makes it a game that performs as well as those classics. Rotoscoping animation, even in primitive-looking sprites, is immediately impressive. Despite the cut out visual elements, the characters move with a true sense of weight and momentum, and desolate landscapes create a sense of credible place, even if they are only represented in a few colors. In addition, the game benefits from modern technology, such as improved frame rates and high-quality audio.

After playing the game for a while and learning about its fabricated history, it's hard to say what impressed me the most: the skill in creating a modern interpretation of a classic adventure game, or the efforts that developers made to craft this game. False story

Either is a good reason to visit The eternal castle: remastered on Steam right now.