Drawn: Trail of Shadows is the third game in the Drawn series and takes place years prior to the events of the previous games. Long ago a young boy with creative imagination draws and paints pictures which come to life. He gets into serious trouble when an evil wizard decides to use the boy's talents to plunge the world into eternal darkness. To that end, the wizard grabs the boy when a painted door is opened and whisks him away, thwarting followers by destroying each painted scene they pass through and setting black crows out as spies.
The story unfolds in four chapters told to Iris by her servant, Franklin. The beginning cut scene shows the alarmed boy being grabbed by the wizard and then pulled through a ripped, burning painting. The player's overall goal is to chase after them, find the cave of the Mountain Giant, rescue the boy and save the world.
Drawn: Trail of Shadows is an adventure game with hidden-object elements. It is played in first person through the eyes of "the stranger" who must read written clues, find and use inventory items and solve various puzzles. Overall the gameplay is identical to its predecessors. Interaction with the environment, including "talking" to characters, is necessary to progress.
This game features new "native widescreen support", an interactive 3D environment, an original musical score, sound effects and voice actors for the main people, Iris and Franklin. Speech is not voiced for interactive creatures but is displayed in written text. There are two difficulty levels, Casual and Experienced. Casual players can see all hotspots highlighted with sparkles, will receive more hints as needed and have the ability to skip puzzles.