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Overview

BlackThorne is a 1994 action platformer, developed by Blizzard and published by Interplay. The player is put in control of the game's protagonist, Kyle "BlackThorne" Vlaros as he progresses through the games many levels, attempting to thwart the evil Sarlac.

The game was initially released in 1994 for both the Super Nintendo and the PC. It was then later ported to Sega 32X, Mac, and Game Boy Advance. In 2013, the game was released as a free PC download via Battle.net.

Gameplay

BlackThorne on the 32X
BlackThorne on the 32X

The games levels are large and winding, and are filled with puzzles and enemies. Kyle will have to run, jump and climb in order to get around each level, utilizing a number of weapons and items. The game's control is generally slower than most platformers. The player loses a lot of control when they run, and running is best for long, straight corridors and long jumps. For the most part, the player will progress slowly, climbing up ledges and making tough jumps.

Combat in BlackThorne is slow and strategic. The player wields a shotgun with unlimited ammo, and can use grenades in combat as well, though these are best used to destroy doors. When an enemy is encountered, they will often back up and wait before attacking. Kyle can also back up to avoid their shots. Enemies will reload and move after shooting, which is when the player should take advantage and eliminate their foe.

Items play a large role in BlackThorne. They are numerous, and are used in many instances for puzzles and clearing obstacles. There are also a number of interactive items in the environment that Kyle must use.

Items

The Levitator
The Levitator
  • Hover Bomb: A basic grenade-like item that explodes on contact. Will kill most enemies in one strike, but is most useful for destroying doorways.
  • Bridge Key: Electronic keys that activate bridges. Bridge keys can be removed and work on any bridge.
  • Remote Wasp: A floating bomb that Kyle can control remotely. He is defenseless when using the bomb.
  • Potion: Refills Kyle's stamina.
  • Levitator: A triangular platform that extends into a pillar that Kyle can stand on to reach high areas.
  • Iron Key: A key that deactivates laser fields.
  • Fire Bomb: Bombs that damage anything they contact and explode the moment they hit the ground.
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