Monica's Castle (lost build of cancelled action role-playing game for Sega Saturn; 1998)

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Monica flyer front.jpg


Status: Lost

Monica's Castle (モニカの城, Monica no Shiro) was an 3D action role-playing game for the cancelled Sega Saturn and the developer and publisher was Pioneer LDC.

Its catchphrase is "A role-playing game that never gives up." (挫折しないRPG)


The beautiful kingdom of Faradoon. With its mild climate and rich harvests, this country was said to be a kingdom loved by the gods. However, the peace and tranquility of this kingdom was shattered by the sudden appearance of a dark mage, Mithridatis. With his immense magical power, Mithridatis burned all the people in the castle and even slaughtered the king. The castle thus fell into the hands of Mithridatis, and countless monsters began to roam the castle. People began to fear the castle, calling it the "Devil's Castle."

Ten years have passed since then, and Monica, the kingdom's second princess and known as the "Lady of Swords," vows to avenge her parents. Leon, the "Mercenary of Dawn," wants to rescue the kingdom's first princess, who is imprisoned in the castle tower, and receive a reward. Mercarto, the "Masked Thief," is determined to get the title of the world's best thief, so he challenges the castle's treasure room. The three, each with his own agenda, enter the castle to overthrow Mithridates.


The game was Pioneer LDC's first Sega Saturn entry and the first to feature 256-color polygons. It was first announced in the summer of 1995 under the title Faradoon, changed to Faradoon The Legend of Dragon Castle in the fall of 1996, and to the current title in November 1997. The release date was originally scheduled for spring 1995, but was postponed and finally set for March 19, 1998.

The gameplay will take place in a castle dungeon. The player chooses between Monica, Leon, and Mercarto, and the three have different objectives and therefore different dungeon courses. Depending on the character, the basic parameters, the weapons that can be equipped, the difficulty level, and the ending will also vary. Also, the character has the transform abilities, with Monica transforming into a "Little red bird" through the power of a pendant passed down in the royal family for generations, Leon into a "Blue wolf" through the power of a ring he originally wore, and Mercarto into a "Silver mouse" through the power of a stolen ring. These transform abilities can be transformed by magic circles scattered around the map, which can be helpful in cutting through traps. Furthermore, the gameplay must be complete with all characters to see the true ending.

The game also sold the use of voice actors, which was common in the 1990s. The voice actors were as follows, Hiroko Kasahara as Monica, Nobutoshi Hayashi (Nobutoshi Canna) as Leon, Takehito Koyasu as Mercarto, and Kikuko Inoue also participated, but whose role is unknown.


Despite the fact that the game had been re-titled since 1995, had been heavily advertised with 256-color polygons and voice actors, and had been featured in magazines, the July 30, 1999 issue of Saturn Fan carried an article in which Pioneer LDC officially responded to an inquiry by the magazine's editorial department that "Due to production reasons, the release of the game has been canceled." The reason for the cancellation remains unknown to this day[1].


On April 21, 2021, Mr. Harada, manager of Kaden no Ken-Chan, a store located in Akihabara that specializes in the purchase of retro games and microcomputer-related products, had the game in his possession and posted a play video on his Twitter account showing it running on an emulator[2]. According to Harada, this is a trial version just before commercialization. The video also shows that immediately after selecting a character, an opening demo for that character is played[3][4][5].

On May 20, 2022, YouTuber Uraroji Gamers loaned Harada a copy of the game and posted gameplay videos from the following day until July 11. As of 2023, the ROM is still considered to be in Mr. Harada's hands, but there is currently no indication that it will surface online.

In addition, there was a campaign to distribute CDs containing the theme songs of the three main characters to those who pre-ordered the game. The theme songs are also not available to listen to online.


VHS Promo

Play Videos by Uraroji Gamers


Magazine article


External Links


  1. 幻の未発売ゲームを追え! ISBN 978-4-1986-4380-5 Retrieved June 13, 2023
  2. Monica's Castle play video by Harada Retrieved June 13, 2023
  3. Mercarto's opening demo Retrieved June 13, 2023
  4. Monica's opening demo Retrieved June 13, 2023
  5. Leon's opening demo Retrieved June 13, 2023