The Thief and the Tinderbox is the twelfth installment in the Dark Parables franchise. The game takes place in the Snowfall Kingdom in the Swiss Alps. As the Fairytale Detective, we have been invited to attend the royal wedding of Prince Gwyn and Gerda, characters from earlier games in the series. We must also investigate a series of forest fires around the kingdom.
This game is based on the Danish fairy tale of The Tinderbox with some elements taken from Arabian mythology, Russian history, and various other fairy tales.
Detective, Prince Gwyn has been the rightful ruler of the Mountain Kingdom ever since the Mountain King slipped into his frozen sleep. Now the Prince requires your expertise. The royal wedding between Prince Gwyn and Gerda is approaching, and wildfire is ravaging the kingdom's forest. A mysterious figure was seen setting the flames, but they were never caught. Your mission is to find the person responsible for this and end the destruction before it escalates. Also, Gerda and Gwyn would be delighted if you could attend their wedding. Good luck, Detective.
WARNING: This section contains massive spoilers! (Read at your own risk)
The game opened with a man pulling on his gloves as he walks around the forest of the Swiss Alps. The man continued walking as he hold up a red gem in his hand. As he walks away, fire started to rise as smoke builds up. The man, although his face was hidden, gave a smirk as fire can be seen behind him. With the red fire gem in his hands, the man started burning down a tree causing more destruction to the forest. He began to become frustrated for he couldn't find what he was looking for as the entire forest was being engulfed in flames.
The Fairytale Detective rides on horseback to the Swiss Alps after getting a wedding invitation to Gerda and Gwyn's royal wedding. Also, so she can stop whomever is setting the forest on fire, according to the briefing (see above). Through her binoculars (which were very cool, by the way), we could see the fire from a distance until we have to hold onto the reins because the horse is running to the forest. We got to a clearing where we encountered the stranger who've been the one setting the flames. Whenever if it was done accidentally or purposely, he fired the magic in front of the horse causing us to get thrown off. Immediately, we had to find shelter in the tree that the stranger went in while our horse is no where to be found (were we abandoned again or did it have a head start?).
As soon as we entered the tree hollow, we got tangled in some vines as the stranger was happily remarking that what he is looking for is close. After getting untangled, we searched around to find a way to get to the path that has been locked. Eventually, we got to the Tinderbox first, but it was snatched out of our hands by none other than Kai! Being rather a jerk than a gentleman a few years ago, he ran past us as the tunnels were starting to collapse. Luckily, we managed to escape through a small opening. When we got up, we ended up near the new Snowfall Kingdom, where our horse was waiting (how did it get there in the first place?).
We followed Kai to the Overlook, where he summoned Rasputin for his first wish. After his wish has been granted to stop the wedding (literally), Kai was being a jerk again by pushing us and stealing the saddle from our horse. After we build a new saddle and continued onwards, Kai told us to not stop him before heading to the new kingdom chapel.
When we caught up and get to the chapel, we learned that everyone within the kingdom was frozen in time. Kai has gotten into the chapel (seriously, how did he get in when we couldn't?). Unfortunately, by the time we reached into the chapel, we could only watch as things gets worse. Gerda, being the Golden Child, was immune to the spell, but was furious at Kai for ruining her wedding. She claimed that Kai wasn't worthy to be the warden or her friend and demand him to leave, calling him a traitor (ouch, that gotta leave a mark). Kai, however, seemed to misunderstood. When he promised to make things right, he actually made it worse. He used his second wish so that Gerda can be with the one who've loved her the longest, causing all the males within the kingdom to be erased. The twisted wish also caused fire in the new kingdom.
As we helped Gerda put out the fire, we met with Snow White again as she offers assistance. When all the fire was put out, everyone went to find Kai as he witness the errors in his wish. Frustrated and feeling that it was his fault that the people are suffering under his wish, he broke down, allowing Rasputin to get into him. Snow White realized that Kai has the Tinderbox and tried to stop him from making anymore wishes, but was too late. Crying out loud, the man yelled out that he was worry and used his last wish for everything to be like it was before. Although his wish was granted, the price was for Kai to become the new spirit of the Tinderbox as Rasputin becomes free.
Snow White and Rasputin had a not so happy family reunion as she attempts to stop her uncle. Unfortunately, her magic got redirected right back at her and she was iced over. Rasputin then started to go after Gerda. However, the gate they went through was locked so we have to dig out some of the wedding presents to get what we needed. When we opened the gates, Rasputin went on about thanking Gerda using the same curtsey before blasting her with magic. Of course, she is immune, but the force of the blast pushes her off the cliff. The man became delighted after knowing that she was a Golden Child. He told her that he'll be back for her blood before making his way to the old Snowfall Kingdom.
We soon find out that Rasputin is King Edric's older brother, who was banished a long time ago. After finding some rope to get Gerda to safety, Gwyn showed up. Although he couldn't offer assistance, he told us to follow Snow White's familiar while he and Gerda returned to help the people of his kingdom. When we encountered Rasputin, he warned us to turn around before blocking the entrance to the old Snowfall Kingdom by bringing the Mountain King statue to life.
After we opened up all of Gerda's wedding gifts (hopefully, we could return some of them), we used it on the Mountain King statue which got destroyed in the process (ah, sure brings back memories, destroying statues). We continue pursuing Rasputin where we witness him using his first wished. He summoned Kai, wishing for his dark forge to rise from the ashes.
After we followed Snow White's eagle to the old Snowfall Kingdom's chapel, we learned a little history about Rasputin. The first talked about Rasputin back when he was made King from a distant kingdom and of the Tinderbox. The second archive mentioned of a murder of a Golden Child. The last message was from King Edric, himself. Information that was contained involves how Rasputin betrayed everyone and that he had to summoned the Moon Priest to defeat the man.
The idea gave us the objective to summon the Moon Priest for help. Luckily, while we were finding the keys for the King's archive, we managed to have access to the familiar old kingdom. However, Rasputin has already gotten the gems that contains his power. We were too late to stop him, but then, we met him outside. He was apparently talking to a statue? Anyway, he went on saying that he will rule the kingdom without weaklings and summoned three fireballs to cause some damage (looks like everyone will have to fix this kingdom... Again.
After we gathered everything, we went to the Mountain Shrine where we summoned the Moon Priest. It was a crazy summoning, things flying around and hitting the floor. Anyway, the Moon Priest appeared (and apparently, he doesn't seem to recognize us). However, he did gave us his name which was Hansel!
Together, we went to find and stop Rasputin once and for all. The Moon Priest unlocked the Hall of the Kings to find the King's hammer. Eventually, we met up with Gwyn who was looking for a way to unfreeze his mother. Later, we met with the Moon Priest again, but this time, we were ready.
Going to the balcony, we rang the bell with Edric's hammer, catching Rasputin's attention. He was becoming cocky, saying that we must think of him as a fool and used his second wish (he also stole our hammer, by the way). He wished us to be gone from the face of the Earth, but luckily, Kai saved us by bending his wish. However, twisting that wish caused Kai major headaches. After we help sooth his pain, Kai explained that he was manipulated by Rasputin and his influences caused him to not be himself. He gave us his farewell before teleporting us out of the Tinderbox (he makes it sound like we're never going to see him again).
Anyway, we ended up in the Dark Forge where we encountered Rasputin again. He was furious that we are still alive. Anyway, he prevented us from stopping him by creating fire. By the time the flames were put out, Rasputin had Odna smash the gems with the hammer that he stole from us earlier. When Rasputin has his powers restore to him, he threw the hammer at us, but hey, we got it back.
We then met up with the Moon Priest again. He was surprised to see us again. Anyway, he told us to craft four elemental seals to used against Rasputin while he will keep the successor busy. Right on cue, Rasputin appeared and the two battled out.
Meanwhile, we went to Odna, the dwarf cried out in pain from his captivity. We freed him and in return, the dwarf will help us destroy (or defeat) the sorcerer. We find pieces of the four elemental seals and one by one, have Odna created them for us with the hammer we gave him. After the seals are finished, Odna left the Dark Forge, not wanting to return to the place.
When he was gone, Hansel was defeated as he fall from... The sky? He warned us that Rasputin is going after Gerda for her blood will caused him to gain immortality. He was gravely injured (not dead, thank goodness), so he only have enough magic to sent us back.
We were then teleported back to the new Snowfall Kingdom where we saw Gwyn. The soon-to-be King was surprised, thinking that we were dead (gee, Gwyn, what could have made you think that?). He was worried because Gerda has lead Rasputin away from the kingdom and into the battlefield. Nevertheless, he was determined to stop him as much as we do. Lucky for us, we've collected all the gate plates to enter the battlefield.
We arrived to see Rasputin and Gerda. The man really wanted her dead, blasting her with magic. Fortunately for her, she safe from danger. We set the seals with the help of Gwyn and managed to activate all of them. As the seals are getting closer to Rasputin, he wished for all of us to die. However, that was one of the taboo wishes, so that wish was wasted. Also because that was his third wish, he was trapped in the Tinderbox once more as Kai was set free. The young man apologize to his friends as they forgive him. The wedding resumed as Gerda and Gwyn were officially made husband and wife and the new King and Queen of the Snowfall Kingdom (unfortunately, it was unknown if Snow White is okay). Other than that, everything else went wonderful. As for us, we start to get ready for a new investigation in the city of Anaben.
Gerda and Gwyn were finally married in a spectacular wedding that was talked about for years to come.
They, too, were sorry how things developed. So they decided, together, to entrust Kai with the greatest responsibility of all: The Tinderbox.
But not so far away, a shadow rises above the city of Anaben.
And the Fairytale Detective marks the map and sets off to investigate.
A Love That Couldn't Be
Once upon a time, a boy and a girl could be seen wandering the paths of the Swiss Alps, talking until the sun set behind the peaks. They shared a deep friendship, but the boy was infatuated with the girl's sharp wit and deep green eyes. Secretly, he hoped that their long looks meant... something more. As time passed, duties claimed them - his as the botanist of the realm, hers as its protector, and their strolls became sporadic. Sometimes the pair was joined by another boy, of royal posture. The trio became friends quickly, but the botanist didn't like the looks the other two exchanged. The boy never had the courage to admit his love for the girl. Upon his return from a long journey, he found out that his two friends had declared undying love and were planning to wed. Despairing, the botanist claimed the title of Forest Warden and roamed the woods, seeking solitude to ease his broken heart. But neither the ancient trees nor the everlasting moss could heal him. The forest just reminded him of the girl's deep green eyes. One faithful night he had a singular dream. In it he saw an obscure figure whose words echoed in his mind forever: "Find the spark of flames - it shall grant you what your heart desires."
The Curse Is Born
On a very misty day in a kingdom far away, a fisherman caught a goldfish who was no ordinary fish but a familiar of the Sea Goddess herself, who loved all of her animal companions very much. The fisherman had heard ancient tales of magic, so he made a deal with the goldfish: if she fulfilled three wishes, he would set her free. The goldfish agreed and brought him riches untold, true love, and the throne of the kingdom. With three wishes granted, the goldfish expected the fisherman to fulfill his end of the bargain. But the former fisherman had become a greedy King and couldn't part with such powerful magic. He put the goldfish into an old tinderbox until he needed more wishes, and it wasn't long before the goldfish died of sorrow. When the Sea Goddess heard about her friend, she was heartbroken and cursed the King's tinderbox to punish his greed; anyone who kept the tinderbox until the third wish was fulfilled would end up its slave, forced to obey another's wishes.
Two Brothers, Two Mirrors
The King's two sons lived with their father in the Mountain Kingdom. The elder, Rasputin, was first in line for the throne by birthright, but his heart had been darkened in childhood and he lusted only for power. The King decreed he was unfit to rule and named Edric, the younger son, as heir. The King's decision instilled great anger and resentment in his elder son - and darkness often brings great cunning. So Rasputin did his plotting and scheming in the shadows until the time was right. Rasputin used his sorcerer's power to trick Odna, the legendary dwarf blacksmith, into crafting a pair of magic mirrors for him. One mirror reflected only the truth, and Rasputin wanted that one for himself. The second mirror reflected only darkness, and brought out the worst in the person it reflected. This one he intended to give his younger brother, Edric the King. Rasputin's plan went awry when Odna realized his magical creations were to be corrupted in the service of Rasputin's wrongdoing. He swung his hammer one last time and shattered the False Mirror.
The End of Tears
Deep in the hills of the East there once lived an unusual child. She was small and timid, and cried at the slightest provocation. Everyone assumed she wouldn't last long in the bitter climate, yet the girl grew and thrived. One night her father returned from the hunt with a bloody gash in his stomach. The healers were summoned and they shook their heads. "We can do nothing for him except prepare him for the journey." But as soon as the girl shed loving tears over her father's wound, the gash closed and healed before their eyes. Word of the healing spread and the girl became a sought-after miracle worker. One day a man bearing the scars of a great battle approached and said to the girl, "You are a Golden Child, able to hold death at bay, even for a man like me." Later that day he was seen peacefully exiting the girl's home, with no scars to be seen, and the villagers found the girl dead, her eyes dried of all tears. It would later be revealed Rasputin had been there.
The Wounded Beast
One summer day, the skies suddenly darkened over the Mountain Kingdom's capital and a deep booming sound came from somewhere in the city. It was Odna shattering the False Mirror, releasing its immense power and discharging it in an explosion that tore down the Dark Forge and changed Odna forever. Thus Rasputin's plot to overthrow King Edric was revealed. Edric feared his brother, for he knew Rasputin's powers were great. The King summoned the arbiter of the Moon Goddess, the Moon Priest, who dueled with Rasputin for three days and nights. The Moon Priest was victorious and Rasputin was at last apprehended. The Moon Priest stripped Rasputin of his dark powers, then pronounced his punishment: death at the hands of the King. But an ineffable brotherly love softened the King's heart. "Rasputin, for your betrayal I banish you from these lands forever and ever. You were my brother, and that bought you a second life, but know this: there will not be a third."
- The Hooded Thief is none other than Kai, the young man seen previously in Rise of the Snow Queen, Ballad of Rapunzel and The Thumbelina Curse.
- The Fairytale Detective is traveling to the Snowfall Kingdom for a wedding. She was last in the Snowfall Kingdom in game three, Rise of the Snow Queen.
- The wedding the Detective is attending is between Gerda and Gwyn. Both characters were first seen in Rise of the Snow Queen. Gerda was also seen in Ballad of Rapunzel, and the two lovebirds first met in The Thumbelina Curse.
- A gargoyle of the Mountain Beast can be seen in the underground lair of the Dog Guardians.
- We meet the mysterious Moon Priest again, who was last seen in The Golden Slumber. We learn later in the game that his name is Hansel, meaning he is the first Golden Child whose story was told in Hansel and Gretel.
- We learn that Gwyn is now the King of the Snowfall Kingdom, after his grandfather, the Mountain King from Rise of the Snow Queen, had died.
- We encounter Snow White again. Snow White has played a role in several Dark Parables games, as early as The Exiled Prince and as recently as The Thumbelina Curse.
- Snow White's Eagle Familiar is seen in this game. He was last seen in The Thumbelina Curse.
- We learn the Mountain King's actual name in this game: Edric. We also discover he had a brother named Rasputin.
- Wedding gifts for the happy couple are found outside the Snowfall Palace. Among the gifts are large chests from the Kingdom of Barsia, the Red Riding Hood Sisters, Floralia, and the Swan Kingdom.
- While the Snowfall Kingdom's capitol is now located in a new place, the Detective visits the remains of the previous capitol and the Snow Queen's Palace, which looks very much the same as it did in Rise of the Snow Queen.
- King Edric's magical hammer was first seen in Rise of the Snow Queen. It was the only artifact capable of breaking the False Mirror after Snow White had reformed it.
- The parable "The Curse Is Born" tells of the Sea Goddess, who played a role in The Little Mermaid and the Purple Tide.
- The parable "Two Brothers, Two Mirrors" tells the tale of the creation of the Magic Mirrors of the Mountain Kingdom. These mirrors were first seen in Rise of the Snow Queen, and the Truth Mirror also played a role in The Red Riding Hood Sisters.
- This game is quite possibly based on the most works of fiction and real-life events out of any Dark Parables title. The location of the Tinderbox, which was inside a tree, is based on the Brothers Grimm's "The Spirit in the Bottle", the dog guardians, tinderbox, and wishes are based on the Danish tale of "The Tinderbox" (elements of which could also correspond to the Arabian tale known as Aladdin), the origin story of the tinderbox is partially based on "The Fisherman and his Wife", and the character of Rasputin is most likely a reference to Grigori Rasputin of Russian history of the Tsar era.
Thief and the Tinderbox Team
Creative Producer: Rajko Nikolic
Producer: Bojan Kocis
Programming: Dragana Ristic
Level Design: Marko Kovacki, Nemanja Skakavac
Art: Andrea Svarc, Milos Nikolovski, Mirjana Marcetic, Vanja Babic, Verica Veljkov
Game Design: Marijana Stojanovic, Vladimir Veskov
Kai: Aleksandar Acanski
Rasputin: Mirko Vujnovic
Snow White: Tatjana Savic
Gerda: Tatjana Savic
Gwyn: Aleksandar Acanski
Moon Priest: Luka Smiljanic
Mother Gothel: Ada Sisic
Guardian: Bojan Kocis
Tape Recorder: Lauren Synger
Stone Statue: Tim Simmons
Snow White: Katie Leigh
Crowd: Katie Leigh, Charlotte Ann
Rasputin: Jonathan Cooke
Kai: William Bradford
Gerda: Charlotte Ann
Moon Priest: Peter Leake
Gwyn: Troy Rodger
Dwarf: Erik Braa
Mother Gothel: Katabelle
Guardian: Matthew Posner
Teaser: Erik Braa
Dearly beloved, we gather here today to join various Dark Parables storylines into a single plot. We'd like to thank everybody who worked on this series before us, with special thanks to fanfic writers who inspires us to announce the Gwyrda canon. We do not thank Rasputin, because he is a notorious party crasher. Cakes for all!