A downloadable game for Windows and macOS

Download NowName your own price

If you'd like to join the official Discord server, you can report any bugs/issues there as well as just chat with people as the community begins to grow!


CONTENT WARNINGS:  Body horror, suicide, blood, strong language

The Dream of Shadowlands Episode 1:  Into the Darkness

When someone is truly hated, they may find themselves forced out of the safety of the light and into the unforgiving dark. Rina wakes up lost and confused in a mysterious new world, learning she has been cursed. Reluctantly teaming up with a plain-spoken demon named Jyl, they find themselves in an underwater dreamscape that appears anything but ordinary. Stumbling upon a cult's plot and facing off with fearsome monsters, the Shadowlands prove to be a treacherous place. Rina must face her first challenges in order to survive the long journey ahead of her. 

"The Dream of Shadowlands" is a top-down rpg series inspired by the RPGMaker horror niche. It features art assets that were drawn traditionally with ink and paper, and a retro style based on 90's anime. 

Note that this game is fully voice-acted, with most of us in the cast being amateurs. If this is something that puts you off, voice acting can be turned off in the game's settings!

Next Episode

This is the first episode in a series planned to run for 5 episodes. To keep track of episodes and receive email alerts about new releases, please check out the official website for the series: https://www.dreamofshadowlands.com/ 





DEFAULT KEYBOARD CONTROLS (Can be remapped in settings)

WASD - Move, toggle menu items

I - Select, interact

J - Block

K - Attack

L - Item

Shift - Dash

Esc - Pause

F - Toggle fullscreen

Enter - Skip Dialogue (If this freezes on "Loading," try pressing Enter once more!)

GAMEPAD CONTROLS (Cannot be remapped)

All Xbox/Microsoft controllers should be compatible, others may or may not be. PS4 controller connected via USB has been tested and works.


Each episode will feature printable DIY versions of key items. The first level's key item is the Cipher Wheel, which can be printed and put together here:

Cipher Wheel

***I update this game frequently to fix bugs, so it is recommended to install this using the Itch app where auto-updates are enabled.***

For Mac users downloading this from the Internet, if you receive a message stating the game is not found, please move the application into a new folder/location than where you extracted it to, it should work after being moved.

PlatformsWindows, macOS
Rated 4.2 out of 5 stars
(13 total ratings)
GenreAdventure, Puzzle, Role Playing
Tags2D, Anime, Episodic, Female Protagonist, GameMaker, Horror, Story Rich


Download NowName your own price

Click download now to get access to the following files:

the-dream-of-shadowlands-mac.zip 369 MB
Version 19
the-dream-of-shadowlands-win.zip 434 MB
Version 28

Development log

View all posts


Log in with itch.io to leave a comment.

Scary Scuffed Games #270


Vorgeschlagen von: Maskedflow

Eins der deutlich besseren RPG Maker type Hames, mit einem Kampfsystem das ich nur hälfte gerafft habe und erst nach Absolvierung des ersten Kapitels mich daran erinnert habe, dass man einen Quicktime Showdown triggern könnte. Artstyle, Kreativität der Monster und der Charaktere sind wirklich herausragend, jedoch haben mir subjektiv die Umgebung und auch die sehr spärliche Musik weniger Zugesagt. Außerdem war die Menüführung etwas fummelig. Dennoch möchte ich betonen, dass ich  ca. 2-3h Content alleine beim ersten Chapter hatte und keinen Cent dafür bezahlen musste. Ich bin gespannt wo die Reise hingeht und neugierig wie sie enden wird. 


Dito: 4.6/5

Chat: 4.25/5

Gesamt: 4.43/5


Full run video review of Episode 1. I actually met the dev of this game in person at a game convention in my hometown so that was pretty cool. ->

I am already planning on buying this game and its other chapters.

Wow, thank you! That means a lot to me. :) Will do my best to make sure not to disappoint!

This game is amazing. I love the zelda-esque combat and the art style. It looks hand drawn so that's a plus point for me And full-blown voice acting!! Its rare to play a game with voice acting here in itch.io. Although I spent a lot of time on the puzzles, they were actually quite easy. Its only because of my 2 brain cells that it took me so log to figure out the solution. The story so far is also great!  Cant wait for the other chapters :D!

Thank you so much for taking the time to play the game and share your experience with it! I'm still trying to get a litmus for how puzzles should be structured in future episodes because some people seem to find them easy or perfect as they are, and others seem to have much more trouble with them. I'm glad to know one more person's opinion because of that! I hope you enjoy Episode 2 when it launches late this year! :)

I played all the way through this a couple of nights ago and I LOVED IT! 

The art style (which is all hand drawn!), the atmosphere (the level design, the real sense of danger from enemies, creature design and sound design), and the game mechanics (choices in first person or traditional attack styles, defeat or outlast bosses, avoid enemies, limited sword use, dialogue options, emotion system, fears based on your choices). It is clear the developer has but so much love and attention to detail in this game that is very rarely seen from first time developers. I play a lot of game demos and indie horror games and this is unlike anything I have encountered. I am absolutely smitten with The Dream of Shadowlands! 

Two of my main critiques are some of the bosses are super hard (the main boss and out running the imp) so I'd appreciate a difficulty option in the future and I noticed when editing my video that I did forget to use some of the game mechanics I was initially excited for (first person combat and talking in save rooms) because they were only mentioned to me in text form at the very start and I forgot. 

I will be giving to the kickstarter campaign for this game and I highly recommend you do too!  

I've included the video link here for part 1 and there will be about 6 parts in total!

Hey there, glad to hear all your thoughts, feedback is very important to me! Since I'm not very good at programming I haven't considered making difficulty options before, but since I want this game to be as accessible to as many people I will seriously look into it for the remaining episodes. I'm not a hard-core gamer myself so I'm much more inclined to add an easier option than a more difficult one haha. Either way very happy to hear you enjoyed it! :)


Part 2 has me falling more and more in love with the little details of the game like fleshing fears and romantic slaps to the back of the head 😘

I tried downloading the file several times, but it just couldn't open on my Mac(Big Sur, Version 11.0).

Hi there! We're you able to follow the steps in the link I posted in the game's description? Here's the link again to be specific: https://help.yoyogames.com/hc/en-us/articles/216753558-Mac-app-damaged-when-down...

If this didn't work, then from what I understand downloading through the itch app should work. Please let me know if you need any other help! :)

The link works and I can access the game now, thanks! (actually searched on google, but entered the wrong commands in terminal)


Here's my short foray into this game! I'm definitely going to do a longer full playthrough of EPs 1 and 2 in the future. :)


Thank you so much for playing my game! I hope you enjoy it as I'm able to release more content! :)

I want to record this game for YouTube but I'm wondering approximately how long the game is


Hey there! Depending on how you play, it can run between 45 minutes and 2.5 hours for most people. I'm planning a big update a month from now if you want to hold off, but either way, hope you enjoy the game!


I definitely LOVE the aesthetic!  I did a bit of a one off video for now, though the game unfortunately crashed and I lost my save.
However, it's definitely likely I'll do a proper full playthrough with multiple episodes once you're done with your big update :)  I'll post my little one off video when it releases.


Hey, thanks for sharing this video, I appreciate it! Can't wait to share the debug build of the final demo with everyone in a couple weeks, hope you'll enjoy the expanded demo! :)

(1 edit)

I haven't played myself yet, but discovered the game in a let's play. It looks so nice - I really did the retro aesthetics, and the characters are compelling so far. I believe I've seen almost everything during the let's play, so I'll wait for the next update to play by myself, though.

Oh by the way, I wanted to download it using the downloadable itch launcher to keep it automatically updated, but it doesn't seem to work. Instead of the install option in the lower part of the screen I have an "open page" option to open it in a browser. And if I use the itch launcher to open the regular download button, it says: "No compatible uploads were found for this title". 

The download works fine if I use a regular browser, but it would be nice to be able to use the launcher.

Hey there! Thanks for the comment, I'm happy to hear you're interesting in following development! 

I am very new to itch so I didn't even know there was a launcher to keep games updated. I'll take a look at compatibility with this launcher and see if I can do anything about that next time I update the build. Thanks for letting me know about it, I'm still learning as you can see, so I appreciate it!!

No problem! As I said, it won't prevent people from playing since the regular download works fine, but it's convenient for people who follow a lot of games and don't always have time to check every single one of them for updated. If you open your launcher and see it in the updates queue, you know there's new content, more likely.

-The Game: 01:19:03

How far did i get? I don't know what to do after the torch and i don't know how to solve the puzzle.

Hey there! Thanks for trying out my game!! The torch is where this build of the game ends, so you got to the end of it! When I've got the demo finished it'll be the entire first level. :)

I'm so impressed by the current build. Love the style.

Thank you so much!! I have a long way to go in fixing and adding to it, but it means a lot that people see potential in my work so far!

Interesting game. I died at one part and it crashed. How far did I get? I like the overall concept and art of the game. I'll very likely revisit.

Hi there! Thank you so much for playing my game and sharing your playthrough! You got about 2/3 of the way through the demo before the crash happened. One thing I noticed was you accidentally skipping the dialogue when trying to choose options, which is understandable because Enter is the skip dialogue button. For selecting options in dialogue, all you have to do to enter your choice is press the "I" button like when advancing dialogue normally! Similarly, when you die, you just have to press the "I" button to return to the main menu. I'll try to make those more clear so others don't have that happen as well. Either way, this video has been very valuable to me and I'll get straight to work patching what I can up! Again, if you manage to get the error code again I would appreciate you throwing that my way! Thanks so much for all of this.

this game is pretty good, I cant wait to see what's next. the art is wonderful and I love the style. the game does have a tendancy to crash every now and again but other than that highly reccomend!

Thank you so much! It's very much in the early stages so I hope to work out many of the kinks in coming builds. May I ask what kind of computer you're running on (laptop vs. desktop)/ around how powerful it is? Or if it gave an error message when it crashed versus the window just freezing or closing? I've tested it on 3 different computers without crashes so I want to gauge if this is a compatibility quirk or if it's an issue I can look into fixing in the code right away! I very much appreciate you letting me know, and your kind words!

Mine crashed after I died. I should have copied the error message. Oops! I'm on desktop and most games run fine. If I get the error again ill send it to you.

Thanks so much! I'll test it on my computer again to see if I can replicate the crash, but if you get that error code again I'll be able to patch it straight away!

Getting back to this thread to update, I think I found the root of the crashes, at least I found the one that occurred in the video you posted. I have updated the game file to have the issue fixed! If any bugs or crashes occur again please let me know!