Welcome Time Wasters!
This week I’m here to tell you about a game called Shadowless. It’s a browser game that puts players in the shoes of a young man out in search of his missing shadow.
The story of Shadowless is fairly simple. The main character wakes up with no memories and notices he doesn’t have a shadow. He’s told that the evil Queen takes the shadows of all her recruits. Legend also claims that only a person without a shadow can defeat the Queen. Thus, out hero sets off to destroy the Queen and take back his shadow.
As you can probably guess, the story in Shadowless isn’t exactly thrilling. It does have a bit of a twist ending, but it’s not really one that surprises the player.
The gameplay of Shadowless is that of a side-scrolling hack-n-slash mixed with role-playing game elements. The player will have to fend off various different enemies as they progress toward the Queen. The enemies get more difficult the further into the adventure the player is, but there’s never really much of a feeling of challenge. Even the final boss fight with the Queen is only difficult because she just throws endless amounts of normal enemies at the player. Not because her patterns or attacks pose any threat.
Players have two different ways of fighting in Shadowless. This first is with a sword. The second is a bow. Each of these are tied to a button/key and the player can hold it to keep attacking. There are also shields and other pieces of equipment that can be found in the game to toughen the player up.
Leveling up in Shadowless is straightforward. The player will run into a wizard during their adventures. Each time they find him they have the option of increasing their level. The four aspects that can be upgraded are Defense, Attack, Rouge and Adventurer. These offer extra resistance, damage, crit chance and more. There are also some unique effects like shooting two arrows at once.
There’s also another ability in Shadowless that I never learned about. It involved bats, but I really don’t know what it does. There are several spots during the game where players can choose to talk to a bat statue. However, they have to have the proper ability to do so first. I never once ran into this ability despite fulling playing through the game once and going about halfway through on a second run, which offers increased difficulty.
The gameplay of Shadowless isn’t what I would call bad, but it is definitely unpolished. Jumping between platforms can be a bit of a pain due to poor collision detection and delayed button reaction. Also, most enemies can be dodged by jumping straight into the air when they attack, even with the weapon clearly going through the hero. The puzzles that are available in the game are also incredibly simple to solve and don’t really add much to the experience.
Another problem that I had with Shadowless was the controls. Players can play with a keyboard if they want, but the game also prominently features a gamepad at the start. I decided to do the gamepad route, but it’s a bit of a mess. The default controls tie jumping to up on the D-pad and it doesn’t mix well with the rest of the game. Reassigning controls is also a hassle due to Shadowless only listing the keyboard changes.
The art in Shadowless isn’t bad, but it doesn’t really stand out either. It’s kind of looks like a mid evil version of Scribblenauts, but without the adorable flare. Animations are also really simple and don’t feel like they have much weight to them.
The audio in Shadowless is basic. There are songs for the hub town, battles and exploring the main dungeon of the game. Sound effects are also present, but they often get drowned out by the music.
Overall, Shadowless isn’t a bad game, but it isn’t really good either. The game is just mediocre. It might be worth a single playthrough if you have nothing else to do, but don’t sink too much time into this game. Without going for all the extras, it should only take about half an hour to beat.
Shadowless earns 2.5 GiN Gems out of 5!