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The creators of Shadowgate are developing a new, epic version of the first-person fantasy adventure smash hit. Help make it happen!
The creators of Shadowgate are developing a new, epic version of the first-person fantasy adventure smash hit. Help make it happen!
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3,468 backers pledged $137,232 to help bring this project to life.

Shadowgate Sound Design

One of the things that the original mouse-driven versions of Shadowgate was missing was proper music (I hesitate to think where I found the sound effects!) In 1989, Hiroyuki Masuno did a masterful score for the NES version - a fan favorite. Rich Douglas will take over the helm in 2012, paying homage to the NES score and developing a full sound design for the game. He has graciously provided us with our first update.

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    1. Missing avatar

      Ismail Saeed on

      A little late for a comment here.

      I love the progressive layering of the sound design you're showing us. My one concern about the music is that it almost takes long enough to get to the recognizable tune that I'm not entirely sure it was there yet by the time the dragon was killing me. I'm just concerned that for a room you spend only brief stints in people might hear your lead-up rather than the song. (And yes, I know the puzzle design might have altered to something other than 'only take a few at a time')

    2. Rich Douglas on

      Thanks everyone for your kind words and suggestions! I'm VERY excited to be a part of this project and have already completed several pieces of music for the game and started to collect sounds. To answer a few of your questions...

      @Dan - lol, nice catch man. Honestly, I bet Masuno was just "inspired" (a little too much) by Alperts 1980 tune. This sort of thing happens all the time in films where the composer is relying a bit too much on the temp track and ends up sounding very close to what they had tracked in initially. The shadowgate halls tune is very similar no doubt.. but changed just enough to avoid legal issues. I'm simply adapting Masunos original themes and no idea that Castle Halls was so close to 1980!

      @Paul - some of my adaptions will be fairly direct with just the slightest additional orchestration to just beef the arrangement up a bit. Don't worry, I was planning on keeping the death music fairly simple :) and cues like the main menu piece (which has been completed) are instantly recognizeable... albeit a bit more epic in sound.

      @Norse - I took the sense of urgency and replaced it with dread... seemed appropriate for Chris' awesome new artwork for the room... besides... many of us already know what happens when you take to many items in that room. Of course, to each their own. Thanks for the feedback.

      @Milton - Always nice to meet a fellow audiophile, no matter what part of the industry you hail from. Thanks for the kind words!

    3. Terence Bowlby on

      Was the Amiga music the same as the NES music?

    4. Milton Georges on

      Awesome update! In the field of sound, I work primarily with bands to engineer and produce tunes, but this was some really great insight into the more cinematic side of sound design. Much appreciated, and it all sounds great!

    5. Missing avatar

      Paul on

      Hmm, I have to say being used to the simpler sound of the NES tunes, it will take some time getting used to the heavy orchestration. Will you approach all of the music like that? I would think some of them would be best suited for something less complex - I've always felt the death tune for example would be terrific as a piano solo.

    6. Björn Fallqvist on

      Awesome. Is there any chance that you will make the soundtrack CD available at the lower tiers also? I just don't have that much money to spend just to get it.

    7. Zojoi 2-time creator on

      Thanks for all the comments, folks. Great stuff! Great suggestions!

    8. Freddy on

      Thanks a lot for showing us how its done :D

    9. Eric Shofe on

      So...just got done with a long night at work. Check in and see this. I'm laying in bed watching on my iPhone with headphones on ...oh my god! Sooo cool. Such rich deep sound. Me so happy!

    10. Missing avatar

      NorseFTX on

      This is really awesome--thank you so much for the update!

      A suggestion!
      I do hear the chord progression in the remixed version of the music, and I think you were certainly going for a more "menacing" undertone for the piece.
      However, there's also an urgency captured by the original piece that feels missing here; I recall when I was young and first entered this room, the music instantly shook me out and set me on edge, and I was kind of scared of this room ever since. =P
      I like that you're thinking brass; I think that's the right direction. Just make it more clear--the room's boiling hot, that the dragon is there staring at you, and he doesn't want you in this room. :3

      Wishing you all the best and looking forward to seeing more--!

    11. Ray Chow on

      I love the sound effects and music. I know it's still in progress, but in the clip it seems as though the sound effects overtake the music a bit too much. Can't wait to listen to the rest of it. :)

    12. Gavin Lambert - Tormented Dreamer on

      This sounds awesome. But the fire-breathing sound sounds a little off somehow. I think I'm envisaging something a little more like the Mac version sound. But it's possible that's just nostalgia talking :)

    13. Tomimt on

      Nice little update. I really like what you've done with the music.

    14. Dan Fischbach on

      I have a question for Rich Douglas: (and if possible, Hiroyuki Masuno)
      Was Shadowgate's "main theme" inspired by Herb Alpert's "1980"? They sound eerily similar. If so, I'm surprised it got by Nintendo's censors back in the day.

      Thank you very much,

    15. Autumn G. Van Kirk

      My face when hearing the chord progression in the new score:

    16. Nealon on

      Wow I love this inside look at the development. This is why crowd funding a game is so wonderful. Go Shadowgate!

    17. Nealon on

      I've opened that chest on my Game Boy and NES. I just cant wait to open that chest on my computer.

    18. David J. Sushil on

      Fantastic! I can't wait for this version of Shadowgate. I have fond memories of playing the NES version as a kid.

    19. TheMagneticOne on

      Great work, keep it up Rich!!

    20. Mando Rodriguez on

      I don't care if I'm BBQ'd, I've been wanting to open that chest in there for years.