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Dark Castle

Your rating: None Average: 4.4 (45 votes)
Year released:
[Main].se [Mirror].us
Dark_Castle_0.sit (540.88 KB)
For System 1 - 5 - Mac OS 9
[Main].se [Mirror].us
darkcastle.img_.sit (672.29 KB)
For System 1 - 5 - Mac OS 9
[Main].se [Mirror].us (55.79 KB)
For System 1 - 5 - Mac OS 9
[Main].se [Mirror].us (7.94 MB)
For System 1 - 5 - Mac OS 9
[Main].se [Mirror].us (2.72 MB)
For System 1 - 5 - Mac OS 9
[Main].se [Mirror].us
DC_800K.hqx (767.15 KB)
For System 1 - 5 - Mac OS 9
This game works with: Basilisk II, Mini vMac

Dark Castle is a 1986 computer game for the Macintosh published by Silicon Beach Software. It was designed and illustrated by Mark Pierce and programmed by Jonathan Gay.

Dark Castle is a platform game where a young hero tries to make his way to the evil Black Knight, dodging objects as well as solving occasional puzzles. The game is notable for its use of sampled sounds to great effect. A sequel titled Beyond Dark Castle was released in February 1988. A second sequel, Return to Dark Castle, was announced in 2000, though it was not released until March 14, 2008. A Mountain Lion compatible version is currently available on Apple's app store (as of 8/21/2013) for $8.99.

Architecture: 68k


by winterlight - 2016, September 27 - 7:42am

I'm trying to play this on an iBook G4 with 10.5.8 but the game will occasionally flash with a ghost image of my desktop. I can use the options screen but once I start the game I can't make the guy move and it constantly flashes the ghost image of my mini vMac desktop.
Anyone else run into this?

jkheiser's picture
by jkheiser - 2016, March 11 - 2:55am

Aw, shucks. It was me. Glad you like it.

themacmeister's picture
by themacmeister - 2016, February 27 - 9:30am

Whoever added the animated GIF of the lightning/opening screen -- you are a freakin' genius!!!

by OZ1SMB - 2015, October 20 - 6:08pm

I have made scans of the box in better quality than the picture already uploaded, I also have made a pdf of the getting started manual.
My problem is that when I try to save the changes I get this error "Referencing to the file used in the field is not allowed.".
What does it mean?

by OZ1SMB - 2015, October 1 - 2:17pm

I also like LodeRunner a lot and I agree that the DC and BDC look great but I can't agree that the gameplay is impossible or unplayable.
I had LR and BDC in the late 80's and yes LR is much easier to control and DC/BDC requires some time to get used to but after some time I don't find them difficult to play.
I still play old games on my Plus and Quadra 950 and enjoy especially DC/BDC to this day.

WhosIt.There's picture
by WhosIt.There - 2015, July 8 - 7:08am

Although they look great, it's the extremely precise nature of the controls and the impossible gameplay that make these Dark Castle games hopelessly unplayable.

LodeRunner was always a much better game. Smile

by CalTheOnly - 2014, August 18 - 12:58am

Still one of my favorite games. I'm not sure what is bad about the controls. Seem pretty simple to me. And I loved the sounds. Very memorable. Especially the Mutant sounds.

by iameatingjam - 2014, April 18 - 10:21pm

I never liked this game as a kid, and I still don't. Bad controls, annoying sounds, horribly frustrating. There are so many better classic mac games, I don't know why this one got so much praise. To each their own I guess.

MCP's picture
by MCP - 2012, October 2 - 3:14am

The page is getting a little overloaded with downloads, but I've added my archive of version 1.2 that I've just found. It's got a compatibility chart included with its docs, detailing which system versions and which models the game works with.

Arthegall's picture
by Arthegall - 2012, April 20 - 6:46pm

Added a complete archive from original media with scans of box and docs. Can't tell you how happy I was to finally get my hands on a complete copy of this, the number one vintage Mac title on my list.

Note that there are two versions of Dark Castle. I have uploaded version 1.0 on 400k MFS disks. What was already here was version 1.1 which I suspect is an update they made for when they started shipping on a single 800k HFS disk. Jkheiser recently scored an NIB copy of version 1.1, so hopefully we'll be able to get a combined and complete archive up before too long.

jkheiser's picture
by jkheiser - 2012, April 8 - 12:36am

Added an animated GIF of the title screen.

Arthegall's picture
by Arthegall - 2012, March 20 - 11:52am

I just added an interview with Jonathan Gay (the 55k file) in which he discusses some of the history behind this game and his views on software preservation.

24bit's picture
by 24bit - 2011, October 3 - 12:32pm

Added a DC4.2 image compressed with Stuffit3.6 for compatibility reasons. (Second DL)
Maybe someone could try if it decompresses with MiniVMac like it should.

IIGS_User's picture
by IIGS_User - 2011, October 3 - 12:15pm

It's impossible to correctly uncompress this program either with the newest Windows version of Stuffit or with the Stuffit included in Mini vMac.

The Stuffit version within Mini vMac maybe is too old (if so, this file have to be re-packaged by using a Mini vMac runnable version, obviously).
File header of the current file says "StuffIt (c)1997-1998 Aladdin Systems, Inc."

MCP's picture
by MCP - 2011, October 2 - 9:41pm

GuyWithGuitars, you're not the only one who hates the control scheme in this game. I love the graphics and design and everything, but that stupid overly complicated control scheme ruins it for me every time. People who could play Macs when this was new just didn't have many other options, so they remember it fondly.

by GuyWithGuitars - 2011, October 2 - 7:07pm

I know I'm in a very small minority, but aside from the great B&W graphics, I can't and never could get into Dark Castle. The controls are horrible and the fact that you DIE immediately and have to start the level all over again is really frustrating and takes away from what could have been a majorly fun game.

by Timshel66 - 2009, September 8 - 11:38pm

It's impossible to correctly uncompress this program either with the newest Windows version of Stuffit or with the Stuffit included in Mini vMac. There is no excuse for not giving the full, uncompressed version. I can't imagine why anyone would make a program unusable just to save a few kilobytes off of bandwidth...

IIGS_User's picture
by IIGS_User - 2009, June 15 - 11:36am

How to play this game in Mac OS X, take a look at

by sven - 2009, June 15 - 7:49am

How do i play dark castle if i have Mac OS X????

by Red M@ (not verified) - 2009, June 2 - 12:02am

Runs perfect for me in Mini vMac (WinXP) with a special stripped-down System 6.0.8 startup disk image I created. Removed all but System, Finder, Clipboard, General, Scrapbook, Key Layout, Mouse, and Sound from System Folder. I open that disk image first to boot, then open the disk image with DC or BDC. Just fits on my netbook screen with magnify/full screen, although the stats at the bottom are cut off.

by Red M@ (not verified) - 2009, June 1 - 11:51pm

This game and its sequel, Beyond Dark Castle, have to be my favorite games from this era. I grew up with a Mac Plus (born in 1984) and I have fond memories of watching/making my father play and beat both games.

Gameplay, animation, and sounds are great. It has a cartoonishness (hovering after running off ledges, running into walls) that is fairly unique (the only other game that comes to mind is Earthworm Jim). Still challanging and fun 20+ years later, a gem and a classic.

P.S. Watch out for the gargoyle!