Atari ST, Amiga 和 MS-DOS
Atari ST, Amiga and MS-DOS
暗影大陆（Shadowlands），听闻这个名字，有些人喜上眉梢，而有些人黯然神伤。对大多数人而言，《暗影大陆》是一部由 Anthony Hopkins 为主演的电影，讲述了 J.R.R. Tolkien 好友 C.S. Lewis 的一生经历。但对我而言，《暗影大陆》让我想起一段美好时光——曾有四位日漫风的游戏角色陪着我在地下城斩妖除魔。《暗影大陆》无疑是我最爱的 RPG 游戏之一。
1992 年，Domark 发行了《暗影大陆》，后来还发行了著名畅销作《波斯王子（Prince of Persia） 》。但在当时，Domark 仅靠街机游戏起家。鉴于此，人们有理由质疑它能否做出优质的 RPG 游戏。
不过，随着玩家踏上《暗影大陆》的冒险征程，这些疑虑统统烟消云散。游戏打造了一个实时交互的 3D 等距世界，四名天选之子在地下城击败拥有至高伟力的霸主（Overlord），为瓦什纳王子（Prince Vashnar）复仇。
Shadowlands. The mere name inspires sweet and dark memories. For most people, it's the title of an Anthony Hopkins movie about the life of writer C.S. Lewis, a good friend of J.R.R. Tolkien. But, to me, it recalls all the great time I spent inside dungeons, accompanied by four adventures with Japanese manga-styled faces. Of what is – without a doubt – one my favourite RPGs.
Shadowlands was published in 1992 by Domark, who would later would give birth to the best-selling Prince of Persia games, but at the time were known for their arcade games. In this context, it isn't strange that doubts were cast over Domark's ability of delivering a good RPG.
These doubts vanish as soon as you begin playing Shadowlands. A 3D, real-time isometric world awaits the four heroes chosen to avenge Prince Vashnar and defeat the mighty Overlord in his underground lair.
Before reaching him, you had to define the heroes, which was relatively simple, since each one was characterised by four basic attributes: Combat, Magic, Strength and Health.
属性基础值在开局时显得很重要，但随着游戏进程的推进，角色的魔法值和战斗值会在历练中不断提高。也就是说，角色施放的咒语越多，其魔法能力就越强。这一设定与经典游戏《迷宫魔兽（地牢大师/ Dungeon Master）》如出一辙。除此以外，《暗影大陆》在很多方面效仿了《迷宫魔兽》。
该作延续《德拉肯（屠龙战纪/ Drakkhen）》之风，但有创新之处。玩家能分别操作四个小队成员，让他们各司其职；也能以团队为单位，令他们步调一致。现在看来这没什么稀奇的，但在当时，这堪称革命性突破。那时，RPG 只有两种模式，要么是小队统一行动，成员各尽其能；要么玩家操纵一个孤胆英雄独自冒险（一般以俯视角）。
这种化整为零般调配成员的能力极大扩充了战斗与解谜的可能性。在游戏的某些关头，队伍的行进阵列起到举足轻重的作用。例如，与敌人展开遭遇战时，一字散开与方阵行进会产生不同的效果。对 RPG 游戏而言，此等战略性是具有开创性的。
Although these stats are important at the start of the game, you'll also be able to further define your heroes as the game advances, since they gain Magic and Combat points with practice. So, the more spells they cast, the better they become at casting. This is the same system used in the classic Dungeon Master, from which Shadowlands takes many cues.
Expanding upon Drakkhen (1989), Shadowlands was created in a way to allow players to control the four heroes either individually or as a group. Today this may sound trivial, but at the time it was a real revolution in RPGs. Until then there were basically two systems: either the group moved and acted together, with each character performing his specific skills, or there was a lone hero, typically in a top-down view.
The ability to spread the members of your party and control them individually opened countless combat and puzzle possibilities. In fact, in certain moments of the game advances is of vital importance: the formation in which the group advances: walking in a line isn't the same as advancing as a block to face an enemy, for example. It was a strategic dimension entirely new to RPGs.
But, without a doubt, the most challenging and fun aspect of the game is its puzzles. Besides the usual key-and-lock, sliding blocks and pressure plates, Shadowlands added – for the first time – puzzles that use light. I'll explain:
The game features a system called Photoscope, where each light source – in the scenery or carried by characters – illuminates the environment in real time, fading away with distance and creating multiple levels of shadows (thus the name of the game). This system was cleverly used by the game's designers to introduce a new type of switch that required a certain level of light to be activated.
1 译者注：波斯王子有两个三部曲。《时之砂》三部曲由 Ubisoft 开发，而初代三部曲的前两部——《波斯王子》与《波斯王子 2：影子与火焰》由 Broderbund 开发，后来，The Learning Company 收购 Broderbund，并开发了第三作《波斯王子 3D》。本文提到的《波斯王子》是 1992 年发布的世嘉移植版，由 Domark 开发并发行。