"Stretching so high above the landscape that it seems as if it’s brushing against the Wasteland sky, there you will see the uppermost spires of Dark Beauty Castle. Listen closely and you’ll hear from within the cackling of the Mad Doctor, embarking upon another of his fiendish schemes. Or is there some even darker purpose behind the Doc’s plans? Could be: he does nothing without reason. He’s mad, not crazy."-Wasteland map, Epic Mickey app
Dark Beauty Castle is a torn-down structure that overlooks most of the world in the Cartoon Wasteland and was once home to Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. It is based on the entrance to Fantasyland from the Disney theme parks and has several autonomous machines patrolling about, including the Mechanical Arm. It also serves as the location for the first and last levels of the game. If you look from where the projector screens are in Mean Street, you can see the castle in the distance.
Dark Beauty Castle has a history filled with tragedy in the Wasteland. It was from here that Oswald the Lucky Rabbit ruled the Wasteland as a benevolent king. His colored glass window mosaic can be seen as the main visual point in the level. Its current state was due to the coming of the Shadow Blot. The castle now stands as a torn-down melancholic site that can serve as an allegory for the rest of the Wasteland and what happened to Oswald's kingdom.
The Mad Doctor's Laboratory
The Mad Doctor's Dark Beauty Castle laboratory is in a room with an exposed roof, featuring various stained glass windows depicting Maleficent, Scar and Captain Hook, with a massive King Oswald window at the back of the room by the controls for a mechanical arm the Mad Doctor uses in his deadly surgeries. There are two levels—a lower level and a balcony. On the lower level below the balcony is a series of statues taken from Beast's Castle, including one of the Beast himself. On the balcony is an entrance to a Utilidor that leads to the Castle Gates.
Mickey visits this room twice, as it provides the first room he visits in Wasteland and later ends up crashing there with Oswald and Gremlin Gus in the Moonliner Rocket towards the end of the game.
At the gates of the castle are two staircases that go up to the gear controls of the Castle door. The gap is blocked, but there is a projector screen located there that leads to the Utilidors of Gremlin Village. There is also a massive catapult in the courtyard where Gremlin Calvin lies trapped.
The Throne Room
Oswald's throne room is a gallery of paintings depicting Wasteland before and after the Thinner Disaster, with the most prominent of them being a large stained glass window depicting Oswald, Ortensia and some of their Bunny Children. When all the paintings are filled in, light emitting gargoyles in the forms of Victor, Hugo and Laverne can be used to activate other gargoyles on the upper levels and open up an entrance to a hidden projector screen to the Fireworks Control Tower. Another screen can be activated if switches in the walls are activated to bring the chandelier down, though this will be at the cost of being unable to restore the paintings.
The Fireworks Control Tower
From the Fireworks Control Tower, Oswald would put on elaborate fireworks shows for his fellow Wastelanders. It is where Oswald placed the stony remains of Ortensia, after she was petrified by The Shadow Blot during the Blot Wars. Hallways and projector screens connect it to the three Castle towers the fireworks are mounted on.
The lowest of the three fireworks towers, the Sorrow Tower is connected to the Fireworks Control Tower by a Utilidor. A climb up crumbling staircases leads to a fireworks activation crystal surrounded by four gargoyles (from Beast's Castle). The tower has two pointed roofs—a blue one and a crumbling pred one over the projector screen to the Grief Tower.
The journey up the Grief Tower goes along one continuous and gradually crumbling ramp where the Shadow Blot tries to slow Mickey down by breaking the walls. When Mickey encounters the Shadow Blot at the activation crystal, he sends in various Blotlings to attack Mickey. The roofs are similar to the Sorrow Tower's.
The Loss Tower is the last of the three fireworks towers. Instead of climbing on the inside, Mickey climbs mostly on the outside, battling Blotlings inside three arenas before arriving at the activation crystal at the top. The Shadow Blot allows Mickey to fill in the gargoyles before attacking him and bringing the tower down, leaving Mickey to take a Utilidor back to the Fireworks Control Tower after plummeting to the lower levels.
The Loss Tower is distinctive from the other towers for numerous Dragon Maleficent motifs, including various banners inside and a ring of statues upon the roof. There are also two statues of ten Grm Reaper on the bridge leading to the tower.
Dark Beauty Castle is where the game starts and finishes. The first place Mickey encounters is the Mad Doctor's Lab where he uses the Mechanical Arm to try to extract Mickey's Heart, but fails in the attempt. When Mickey tries to fight the Mad Doctor, the Shadow Blot tries to attack Mickey but fails when the brave mouse picks up the brush and scares him away. When the Mad Doctor realizes the Blot's disappearance, he uses a lever on his machine to escape. Mickey suddenly discovers Oswald behind a machine, nervous of this, Oswald tries to escape the way the Mad Doctor did. Instead he ruins the Mechanical Arm and makes him berserk. When Oswald escapes through a door while avoiding the Arm's attacks, it sees Mickey and decides to destroy him. Gremlin Gus appears and distracts the arm shortly by teleporting to various spots. While in the lab, Gus teaches Mickey to jump and to use his Spin Move to destroy the machines that power the Mechanical Arm. While traveling through the Castle, they encounter two Seers and Gus teaches Mickey to fight with his brush. Finally they escape to Gremlin Village to try to find a way for Mickey to escape Wasteland.
Near the end of the game, Dark Beauty Castle is the second-last place to play in (with the last one being Inside the Blot). Originally the heroes' plan was to use the Moonliner Rocket to fly to the Blot and when near Mickey's heart, activate the self-destruct function. Unfortunately the plan fails because of the Blot's bloticles absorbing the paint from the rocket, making them crash in the Mad Doctor's Lab. When Mickey wakes up (from landing faint), the whole place is covered by Thinner. As Mickey drowns the Thinner out of the lab, the door to the Throne Room is briefly opened as a Slobber guarding the key closes it. Mickey must then befriend the Slobber for him to give the key by his will, or erasing it and getting the key while he's melting. When entering the Throne Room, you have two choices to advance to the Fireworks Control Center: painting in all the paintings in the room (4 good, 4 sad) and then activating the gargoyles or swinging the chandelier by thinning out the chain holders hidden in the room and leaving the room in ruins. Oswald will explain Mickey and Gus that they have to activate the three batteries that will prepare the fireworks to launch at the Blot. There, Mickey will climb 3 towers: Sorrow Tower, Grief Tower, and Loss Tower. When finishing and trying to activate the remote control the Blot grabs Oswald, Gus, and Ortensia (converted into an inert statue), forcing Mickey to jump into the Blot.
After Oswald inserts Mckey's heart, he uses his remote to launch the fireworks that obliterated the Blot. Afterwards, rain of paint fell on Wasteland that restored the castle to its former splendor and glory.
Epic Mickey 2
"Tall & majestic, Dark Beauty Castle towers over all. Oswald & Ortensia have worked hard to clean it up!" Disney Epic Mickey Video Game Facebook page description.
Mickey reenters Wasteland again by falling into a window of Dark Beauty Castle, where Ortensia and Gus are. Ortensia and Gus don't trust the Mad Doctor, but Oswald is convinced that they should give him a second chance. Mickey suggests they go find the Mad Doctor, when a quake starts falling, and the castle starts collapsing all around them. When some rubble comes down and separates Ortensia from the others. Mickey ,Gus and Oswald outrun the rubble to escape the castle and reunite with Ortensia. Eventually all four escape by train.
The "My Other House is a Castle pin" found in Ortensia's house and the above description seems to suggest that Oswald and Ortensia used the castle as a second home.
Due to the earthquakes, the castle has re-grown inert parts and is in a collapsing state.
- Mad Doctor's Lab (1st visit)- In chest in the room opened by defeating the Mechanical Arm.
- Mad Doctor's Lab (2nd visit)- In hidden room behind thinnable Oswald statue.
- Utilidor 4- In the hidden side hallway. (2nd visit)
- Utilidor 7- In the part where you have to go outside and paint in the gears, ride the chandelier all the way up to get the pin. (2nd visit)
- Courtyard- Given by Gremlin Calvin if you free him (do not hit the chest on the pressure plate as this will fire him). (1st visit)
- Throne Room- In the air above the entrance projector. Either drop down from the upper level, or bounce off the Slobber's head.
- Grief Tower- In thinned-out chest to the right of the entrance.
- Loss Tower- Below the entrance to the third arena.
- Utilidor 7- In chest in upper floor of the second hallway. Use a watch sketch to run across the collapsing floor or make a timed jump from the first chandelier (This is where the second chandelier falls, leaving only a chain).
- Dark Beauty Castle Pin- Courtyard- In a treasure chest when you thin out the toon red door near the catapult. (1st visit)
- Oswald Pin- Fireworks Control Center- Given by Oswald if you restore his throne room. (2nd visit)
- Skydiver Pin- In chest found at the bottom of Loss Tower (After the massive fall). (2nd visit)
- The Mad Doctor's Lab II: Found in the hidden room of the Mad Doctor's Lab after Mickey defeats the Mechanical Arm.
- Dark Beauty Castle I: Found in the Courtyard under the thinnable base of the left ramp.
- Sleeping Ortensia: Behind the Control Panel in the Fireworks Control Tower.
- Horning Blot: In one of the towers with the real Blot.
- When you are climbing the towers be careful where you step as the Blot will be knocking down the walls and floors around you, take refuge on toon platforms as he can't destroy most of those.
- Paint in ornaments to distract the Blot's paint sucking tentacles so you can get past.
- Hitting Suits of armour will usually spawn Health or a Paintbrush Refills.
Neutral: It sounds mysterious and dark as it should be. A haunting, music box-esque rendition of Once Upon a Dream can be heard at various points in the music.
Paint: Continued use of Paint creates a lighter, eerier atmosphere. It takes the music box feel touched upon in the Neutral form and runs with it, being much quieter and gentler than other versions. Soft bell and flute-esque sounds recur through the song, climaxing in a louder ending portion announced by gong, composed of violin and woodwind sounds.
Thinner: Continued use of Thinner creates an extremely dark atmosphere, fitting for the villain Maleficent. Sousaphones carry the main tune of this version, complimented by big death bells and shrill metallic strings.
- The swinging chandeliers from the later parts can be seen in the "Ye Olden Days Level" so this is where they might have come from.
- There are stained glass portraits here that reveal Scar, Captain Hook, and Maleficent.
- There is a statue below the balcony of The Beast.
- In both games, there are suits of armour across the castle in the form of Donald Duck and Goofy.
- In the first game, during the mini-boss (the device the Mad Doctor used to steal Mickey's heart), there is paintable objects. However, you can't use the brush until you trigger the cutscene teaching you on the paintbrushes abilities: painting and thinning.
- The original concept arts all had the castle leaning on the right, Pise-tower style, an effect that was eventually scrapped.
- Despite having such a big role in the first game, there are only 3 enemies to fight on your first visit, 2 Seers and the mechanical arm.