Shining and the Darkness for Mega Drive was released on March 29, 1991 in Japan. It is known outside Japan as Shining and the Darkness.
Sega allocated the bare minimum budget offered to out-of-house developers for the creation of Shining and the Darkness. According to Hiroyuki Takahashi: "Because we were on such a tight budget, apart from the programming and graphics, I did nearly all of the work on [Shining in the Darkness]. I suppose the basic concept behind Darkness was 'realism'. I thought it would be exciting if the player could actually travel to a fantasy world and walk around, exploring old houses, dungeons and other places. It was in essence a continuation of the sense of excitement you'd get from moving through the dungeons in older games such as Wizardry. By 'reality' I'm not talking about true realism – I mean the feeling that you really are progressing through actual houses and dungeons, and the same thing applied to the battles."