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Prerelease:Beyond Dark Castle (Mac OS Classic)

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This page details prerelease information and/or media for Beyond Dark Castle (Mac OS Classic).

The Ante Room screenshot on the back cover shows the rightmost part of the inventory split into six sections, rather than three. So do the following images issued as publicity material.

East Tower Top

An early mockup with an unshaded background accompanied the April 1988 review in Computer Entertainer.

Prerelease Final
Beyond Dark Castle (Mac OS Classic) - ComEnt ETT (Pre).png Beyond Dark Castle (Mac OS Classic) - ComEnt ETT (Final).png


Several elements can be dismissed as pasted in:

  • The presence of Duncan's chopper-pack doesn't fit with the game design, not least because there's nowhere here to hang it up.
  • The guard has no offscreen door for replacements to emerge from.
  • The wizard is prematurely looking up from his book, even though his sprites and behavior were finalized back in the first game.

Others indicate changed ideas:

  • The platforms on the left were shorter, keeping the whole tower onscreen.
  • The wizard's tower was no taller than the Orb's, and his lightbulb was over the ladder.
  • There were additional beams (white circles) under the wizard's mousehole and under the platform next to the leftmost rope.
  • The third rope from the right was originally the same height as its neighbors, and lacked a second beam.
  • There was a chain to pull in the lower-right corner, and nothing obvious for it to do. Maybe the wizard had a forcefield, like in the first game?
  • There was no sign of spike traps anywhere.

Status Bar

  • As mentioned, instead of a difficulty readout there were three extra item slots. At this point, they held words instead of icons.
  • The Score and Rocks counters were directly next to their labels.
  • Lives, Keys, and Elixirs each had a leading zero.
  • Gas was filled up to 130. The final is capped at 99, even when using cheats.
  • The Health bar was white instead of gray.

Computer Room

A closer-to-final image illustrated MacUser's coverage in August 1988.

Prerelease Final
Beyond Dark Castle (Mac OS Classic) - MacUser CR (Pre).png Beyond Dark Castle (Mac OS Classic) - MacUser CR (Final).png


  • There was more overlap between the two laser beams.
  • The collectible items had slightly different positions.
  • The upper platform didn't extend all the way to the rope.
  • The brackets holding the Save/Restore levers were smaller.
  • The rat in front of the desktop Mac stood on its hind legs. (That's actually the sprite used for a rat falling off a rope; again, probably pasted in.)

Status Bar

  • The six-chambered inventory area switched to icons, at least two of which could be Orbs. In the final game, trying to hold two Orbs at once sets off an explosion.
  • The Score and Rocks numbers were again aligned differently.
  • The early Health bar was slightly longer.
  • Even with cheats, you can only have 50 bombs—not 1,000.