Darkest Dungeon is a challenging gothic roguelike turn-based RPG about the psychological stresses of adventuring. Recruit, train, and lead a team of flawed heroes against unimaginable horrors, stress, famine, disease, and the ever-encroaching dark. Can you keep your heroes together when all hope is lost?
User reviews: Very Positive (3,369 reviews)
Release Date: Feb 3, 2015

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“Darkest Dungeon already has a ton of content (10 hero classes, 3 dungeon environments, dozens of monsters, 130+ items, and more ) and we want to give fans a chance to play the game now! This in turn gives us a chance to improve the game based upon player feedback and otherwise involve the community in development!”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“We plan to be in Early Access for approximately six months, which time we will use to add more dungeons, more character classes, and many new features. Our intent is to release the full version of the game sometime in the 2nd half of 2015.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“For the full release, we are planning to add more dungeon environments (one of which is the Darkest Dungeon), more character classes, story mode completion, additional monsters, items, quirks, narration, and dialogue. We also have reserved some time to add other new features and make changes based upon player feedback!”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“The current Early Access build is playable with 3 complete dungeon environments (Ruins, Weald, and Warrens), 10 character classes, 9 town building types, 5+ quest types, 30+ monsters, 130+ items, and more than 30 interactive dungeon objects. There is currently no end to the Campaign Mode in Early Access, so players can keep raising heroes and embarking on quests indefinitely. The full version of the game will have an end to the story.”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“Final pricing for the game has not been determined, but the initial price will not be below Early Access list price.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“The community is encouraged to post feedback on the official forums: http://www.darkestdungeon.com/forums/. Also, purchasers are asked (but not required) to opt-in for anonymous gameplay data collection, which we use directly to collect play stats to assist with gameplay balancing.”
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Includes 2 items: Darkest Dungeon, Darkest Dungeon Soundtrack

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Recommended By Curators

"Darkest Dungeon wears its Lovecraftiness on its sleeve, which means that in addition to freaky monsters, the game embraces madness as a game mechanic."
Read the full review here.

Recent updates View all (21)

February 27

Build Update #7794 (PC and Mac)

  • Potential fix for Steam Overlay problem
  • Fixed profile editing issues
  • Fixed incorrect torch animation playing when loading into a dungeon
  • Fixed problem with curio quest item interaction not playing the correct sound effect
  • Fixed weird problem on Mac where you would always get a negative quirk and a positive quirk in the raid results
  • Fixed bug where you could drag loot from the loot box to your inventory even though it was supposed to go to the hero
  • Fixed curio quirk purge banner staying up indefinitely
  • Fixed quest generation to guarantee quest for each dungeon that is unlocked
  • Fixed scouting banner staying up when you switched to the inventory
  • Fixed act out reactions so that they only happen by heroes and in reaction to heroes who are alive
  • Fixed issue to ensure that any loot taken from a dead hero in a hallway doesn't interrupt the overlay events
  • Fixed overlay event assert
  • Fixed many spelling mistakes
  • Unnamed Curse is now a negative result!
  • Knife board was accidentally tagged as "drink"...not anymore

26 comments Read more

February 26

Build Update #7756 (PC and Mac)

  • Fixed issue with corrupt save file handling
  • Fixed "Prop type not handled" assert
  • Fixed camping sound effects not stopping when quitting to main menu from camping
  • Fixed camping skill error with "Clean Guns" where some buffs were not applying
  • Fixed missing strings for block buff masochistic
  • Updated art for round indicator (no more purple!)
  • Party surprise will now always move at least one hero in the party

27 comments Read more
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About This Game

Darkest Dungeon is a challenging gothic roguelike turn-based RPG about the psychological stresses of adventuring.

Recruit, train, and lead a team of flawed heroes through twisted forests, forgotten warrens, ruined crypts, and beyond. You'll battle not only unimaginable foes, but stress, famine, disease, and the ever-encroaching dark. Uncover strange mysteries, and pit the heroes against an array of fearsome monsters with an innovative strategic turn-based combat system.

  • The Affliction System – battle not only monsters, but stress! Contend with paranoia, masochism, fear, irrationality, and a host of gameplay-meaningful quirks!
  • Striking hand-drawn gothic crowquill art style
  • Innovative turn-based combat pits you against a host of diabolical monsters
  • Ten (and counting!) playable hero classes, including Plague Doctor, Hellion, and even the Leper!
  • Camp to heal wounds or deliver inspiring speeches.
  • Rest your weary, shell-shocked characters in town at the Tavern or the Abbey to keep their stress in check.
  • Classic CRPG and roguelike features, including meaningful permadeath, procedural dungeons, and incredible replay

Can you stem the tide of eldritch horrors erupting across your family’s ancestral estate?

Descend at your peril!

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7+
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Open GL 3.2+ Compliant
    • Hard Drive: 900 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: 1080p, 16:9 recommended
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7+
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Open GL 3.2+ Compliant
    • Hard Drive: 900 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: 1080p, 16:9 recommended
    Minimum:
    • OS: OSX 10.9+
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Open GL 3.2+ Compliant
    • Hard Drive: 900 MB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: OSX 10.9+
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Open GL 3.2+ Compliant
    • Hard Drive: 900 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: 1080p, 16:9 recommended
Helpful customer reviews
148 of 188 people (79%) found this review helpful
121 people found this review funny
38.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 21
Early Access Review
First Death: Unforgettably Tragic
Fifth Death: Unavoidable Consequences
Fifteenth Death: Acceptable Losses
Fiftieth Death: Necessary Sacrifices

Meat Grinder Simulator 2015
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
82 of 109 people (75%) found this review helpful
74 people found this review funny
43.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 22
Early Access Review
It's like the rpg version of darksouls


Includes- Pain, Anger, Stress, Nightmares, WW2 flashbacks, And death.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
95 of 134 people (71%) found this review helpful
123 people found this review funny
64.5 hrs on record
Posted: February 22
Early Access Review
-got 4 Legendary units
-went to kill Swine King
-can't move for 4 rounds
-party died
-got syphilis
-lost keyboard
-is now masochistic
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
53 of 67 people (79%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
20.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 22
Early Access Review
This game really laughs at all the other early access games in quality, very well done!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
34 of 41 people (83%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
19.1 hrs on record
Posted: February 22
Early Access Review
Finally a game not afraid to force hard choices. I have lost my favorite hero several times, each time was more memorable than the next. This game is badass.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
24 of 25 people (96%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
18.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 25
Early Access Review
Most depressing game? Quite possibly.

Darkest Dungeon is a game I only recently discovered, and I'm very glad I did.
An incredibly punishing game that should please masochists the world over - Darkest Dungeon combines a variety of gameplay elements spanning several genres, and heavy influence from Lovecraftian mythos with dark gothic themes.
Playing as somewhat of an RPG/DnD/adventure/roguelike hybrid, the game focuses upon building a party and completing quests through side-scrolling exploration riddled with turn-based strategy for combat. This may sound fairly stock-standard, but the added element of "stress" adds a layer of depth unlike any I've seen in a game.

Each character has a set amount of HP. Simple? Yes.
Each character has a set level of stress at any given point in time. Simple? Not quite.

Actions while questing, fighting, resting and returning to town in-between quests will all have an impact on a character's stress; this is what turns an otherwise fairly simple RPG into a challenging, punishing experience of a game. Once stress level on a character hits 100, they turn insane: acting irrational, spreading stress among party members, attacking of their own accord in battles. This is exactly what you want to avoid.

I could go on about Darkest Dungeon for several pages, but that would simply be detracting from the amount of time you could be spending actually playing it. Though early access (at this moment), it's easily worth the purchase and will have you cursing for hours on end as your party members trudge through dungeons, are faced with insanity and eventually perish.

Buy this game.
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22 of 24 people (92%) found this review helpful
19.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 24
Early Access Review
Darkest Dungeon is, essentially, a dungeon crawler, but, thanks to the visual style, narration and well-crafted game mechanics, it transcends the bounds of genre and expectations.

It should be noted, that, regardless of EA stage, the game is not only playable, but reliably enjoyable. Except for the lack of story ending and access to some of the dungeons, it could totally pass for the feature-complete product. It's nice to know, though, that developers are still going to add even more content - if they accomplish that goal, the finalized game well may reach such remarkable quality level, that it will set a new reference standard among indie game projects.

Good things
  • Game mechanics

    Developers managed to find the fragile balance, making game mechanics deep, but inuitive and easy to grasp at the same time. You won't be completely lost from the very start, but there is a bit of intriguing sophistication to make sense of later. The "Stress" system is an especially good addition to the gameplay.

  • Interface

    The bane of number-crunching, turn-based games, the interface is well-managed here. Well-proporsioned and unobtrusive elements blend into gameplay process fast and easily.

  • Difficulty and replayability

    In spite of the waringins about "making the best of bad situation", the game is not too hard for a more casual player. Hardcore dungeon explorers may find it a bit lacking for their taste. But the balance is good, and the game finds amusing ways of bringing even the experienced player down to earth sometimes. In my second playthrough, just as soon as I started to think that I'm dealing with things too well, the tide of events made a sudden turn and I found myself escaping the dungeon with only half of the team, badly beaten. And, to my astonishment, it feeled just as a natural matter of hard luck, not a difficulty-balancing smite from the game engine!

  • Style

    Despite everything mentioned above, the game could still come out relatively mediocre, if not for the visual, sound and narrative style.
    The disembodied voice of narrator gently but firmly guides you through the early stages and offers timely comments later, which greatly enriches the atomshpere. Unvoiced phrases of your heroes really make the story shine, though. You'll have a lot of fun watching them express their opinions and emotions while in action. Not to mention the heroes bickering, which is hilarious, but disasterous for their combat effectiveness
    Visual style is in carefully crafted superposition between self-irony caricature, Lovecraft-ish illustration and all-too-serious dark fantasy. Play the game for a little while, and be engulfed in its atmosphere.
    Sound only adds to the effect. The soundtrack links to the game events well, but it doesn't leap to the foreground.

Things to wish for
  • Minor loading screen glitch fix

    Sometimes the level loading screen seems to be stuck - and if you try to nudge things along with a mouse click or a keystroke, the game may crash. I've only encountered the glitch a couple of times.

  • More content

    The more, the better. More character phrases, more dungeons, more monsters, more bosses with peculiar stratagies!


All in all, the game is not only good already, but has a lot of potential to become better! A nice example of a well-made Early Access project, for a change.

Absolutely recommended.
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27 of 39 people (69%) found this review helpful
19 people found this review funny
21.1 hrs on record
Posted: February 23
Early Access Review
My overpowered hellion went insane and was killed after being force-fed a stew that was made out of her companions. 10/10 would dine again
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
15 of 19 people (79%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
4.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 24
Early Access Review
Let me preface this by saying how much I dislike turn-based combat. In all my years of gaming, games like Final Fantasy and, well, any JRPG really, rubbed me up several wrong ways when I came back to the realization that my party and the enemy were taking it in turns to stand in a forest clearing and kick each other in the shins until the guy who didn't bring enough healing potions fell over. The only game with turn-based mechanics that I ever liked, even loved, was XCOM: Enemy Unknown, which felt like playing a massive, high-stakes board game where tactical positioning and cover was of the utmost importance, and the turns progressed in a way that made sense.

Well, after several years of being in a Pathfinder group, and about a decade of being in love with gothic horror in general, Darkest Dungeon did for me what XCOM did. It did the impossible. It got me to like turn-based combat all over again.

That said, calling D.D. a "turn-based" game is doing the fantastically well-implemented RNG elements a disservice. RNG is infamously difficult to get right, especially in rougelike titles where they basically hold up the entirety of the experience, but D.D. has found that precarious balance between unrelenting and fair, where challenges feel surrmountable and all of the numbers mean very important things that become gradually evident over time. There's this problematic occurance in a lot of RNG games I've played where the slightest mishap in balancing the numbers is the single, tenuous line between monstrously unfair and insultingly easy. D.D., to its credit and my endless amazement, has found the balance upon the edge of the knife.

And, holy crap you guys, this game is still in Early Access. Oh my good lord, but I cannot WAIT to see how these guys polish their formula, because it's already a mirror finish.

In general, there's a whole bunch to love about D.D., but I'll rattle off a few things that I find immensely pleasurable:

--The "crowquill" art style and gothic, Lovecraftian influences are drop-dead gorgeous. Props to their art designer (and also to Mike Mingola, who kind of started the whole thing) for making some of the creepiest, grimiest, flat-out prettiest aesthetic choices I've seen since Dark Souls (the first one, that is).

--The varied player classes and character builds makes for some damn fun experimentation and augmentation as you build up resources and plan your parties' ventures. I love how almost every class is viable in almost any position with the right build and gear. I've already had great fun trying out new kinds of parties, mostly failing, and learning a lot from those failures. There's some deep, rich mechanics under this game's surface, and I, for one, am eager to puzzle them out.

--The tactical positioning mechanics. Holy crap, this might have basically sold the entire thing to me. As I mentioned previously, turn-based games aren't my thing. Turn-based tactics, on the other hand, now there's an entirely different bugbear. The way you suss out how different squaddies fit together, the best party orders, the best adventuring combo teams, and then watching in abject terror as your team gets suprised and jumbled and your entire oder is screwed up and you have to scramble, sweating and swearing, to reassemble your precious roster row before that dreaded, incoming TPW. Glorious. Simply glorious.

--The weight of the player's decisions. Everything matters in this game. Every little decision the player makes can have massive consequences in the short AND the long. I seriously have not played anything so maschostically challenging, nor as powerfully rewarding, since Demon's Souls and Dark Souls.

That's about it. There's so much greatness in this game, and so much I could talk about. It is in early access though, so I think a brief list of more things I'd like to see is in order:

1. Random events in dungeons: coming across a lost family searching for a way out, or perhaps an ancient tome of eldritch power that the party can't decide what to do with, or maybe recuing a hapless villager from the clutches of the swine hoards. Those are pretty simple examples off the top of my head, but this game is absolutely RIPE for the odd proc gen, or maybe even scripted events that can only occur once per playthrough, that comes along to mix up the formula. Some great opportunities for challenging mechanics-driven decision-making here, guys. Love to see it implemented.

2. More character classes: yeah, there's already a lot, and I know some more have been planned, but holy crap guys, I cannot believe how many concepts for classes didn't make it in to a game like this. The Huntress, the Archaeologist (Indiana Jones, anybody?), the Librarian, the Investigator (I'm thinking Shadow Over Innsmouth), the Sheriff (or maybe Marshall?), the Muskateer, the Assassin, and that's just right off the top of my head. Seriously, to see more awesome adventuring dudes and dudettes to send to their untimely demises would make me just the happiest.

3. More insight into the world and the story of the Ancestor: seriously, the bridging narrative (what there is of it) in this game is turning out to be some sick, twisted, wonderfully macabre worldbuilding. I want so much more. I seriously can't get enough. If there's a way to implement it (as perhaps in a way similar to number 1 up above), more story missions would be the absolute tops. It's already great, you guys. I just want more.

So, yeah. Early Access. Already an absolute gem. Only going to get better. GIVE THESE GUYS YOUR MONEY. THEY EARNED IT. Want to see more of it. Probably will. Eagerly await new content and alterations.

Peace.
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11 of 13 people (85%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
15.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 25
Early Access Review
I took my 4 best units, which isn't saying much, and headed for the apprentice Necromancers lair, I blazed through the dungeon without breaking a sweat, loot everywhere, over eight-thousand golds worth. Found the Necro-♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ in the last room on my last torch. he fell in exactly six turns without doing more than half the health of my party, it was time to rush his last and finish up.

Don't rush the minion.

My Highwayman, Crusader and Plague doctor all missed their attack, the Vestal got a single point heal on the entire party, no issue, just attack again next turn. The ten health minion landed a crit on my Highwayman, inflicting bleed. He died on the first tick. That's it, i thought to myself, I attacked with my remaining three units, Crusader missed, Plague Doctor didn't inflict blight, the Vastel only did three damage.

He crits again on my Vastel, she drops to deaths door and all three have a resolve test.

They all become heroic. The next Crusader turn I landed a hit for sixteen damage and left the dungeon.

Amazing Game, would have a heart attack again.
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7 of 9 people (78%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
6.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 26
Early Access Review
You will go crazy.
You will rage.
You will contract Syphillis.
You will die.
And then you die some more.

Best game of 2015 and best early access. Would go insane again.
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9 of 13 people (69%) found this review helpful
14 people found this review funny
21.4 hrs on record
Posted: February 26
Early Access Review
This game is so much like life in Kazakstan:
You go into cellar to get some meat from pig, fight through bad bandits (uzbek neighbours are real plague, like undead in game) and end up with a syphilis.
But then you have big party in tavern or brothel.

11/10
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10 of 15 people (67%) found this review helpful
10 people found this review funny
47.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 26
Early Access Review
>Be me.
>Get letter from wealthy recluse relative.
>Family Estate is overrun by beast, brigands, and evil ones.
>Reclusive Relative dead.
>Estate is mine, bit of a fixer-upper, comes with very own butler.
>Butler spends most of his time at the pub. #moocher
>Hire a couple of laborers to clear brush, gotta flip this property.
>One worker a transient, one a religious pilgrim doing a work/travel abroad thing #dontjudgemeiwontjudgeyou
>they're a bit rough around the edges, eat too much, always complaining about not having the right gear and missing the common sense to avoid fingering dead things.
>Workers return with syphilus and tetanus and a fear of the dark.
>Invest in heathcare and benefits of non-unionized laborers. #becausewecare
>Hire more workers. #offthebooks
>Labour saftey regulations in this country are lax.
>workers die off. #shallowunmarkedgraves
>get more lambs for the slaughter workers.
>0 days since last workplace injury.
>upgrade heathcare. It's like offering Roman gladiators dental. #uselesscuztheygonnadie
>turns out this fixer-upper is a money pit.
>Restart game.

>Repeat.


This is by far the most entertaining realestate simulator I have ever played.
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13 of 21 people (62%) found this review helpful
9 people found this review funny
15.4 hrs on record
Posted: February 24
Early Access Review
I dupe this game "Dark Souls Tycoon".

I read, prior to purchase, that some people gave this game a negative review because of the use of RNG. Please tell me what crack they are smoking so I can sell that to them to give these devs more money.
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9 of 15 people (60%) found this review helpful
8 people found this review funny
4.1 hrs on record
Posted: February 22
Early Access Review
my first leper contracted syphillis from a tree
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
12.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 25
Early Access Review
I am very excited to see where this game is going. I would highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys classic tabletop, dark themes, and testing their luck against difficult odds.

Atmopshere / Theme / Art:

I love the non-traditional art style of the game - the character and background art is cartoonish but it manages somehow to add to the charm of the game, not take away from it. The narration is spot-on and well-done and I found it to be an enhancement to the game. The atmosphere is consistent and nicely executed.

Gameplay:

I found gameplay to be enjoyable, personally. I love the simple but effective UI - it plays like a casual game but there's much more to it under the surface and you can really feel that. It has all the pros of a point-and-click and none of the cons. There's no twitch, which I like, and I absolutely love that your decisions are well and truly final. There's no save-game trickery, no way to go back on a bad choice. You live with what you do no matter what.

I find the game to be a great diversion and will be playing the heck out of it :)
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
40.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 26
Early Access Review
I'm not normally into turn-based strategy games, but I can't get enough Darkest Dungeon. The artwork is pretty damn sweet, the narrator has the coolest voice, and the combat is so intense and grueling.

In the beginning, you are basically at the mercy of RNG, and people will die. But the higher level you get and the better trinkets you earn, you will learn what combinations work well together and you will turn the RNG in your favor.

For only $20 at the time of this review, I would definitely say it is worth every cent. The game is Early Access at this point, but it is already developed enough to provide hours and hours of entertainment.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
7.5 hrs on record
Posted: February 27
Early Access Review
One of the most polished Early Access games I have ever played, Darkest Dungeon is a gem that deserves your time. A wonderful mish-mash of genres with the addition of the excellent Stress mechanics make this one of the most brutal RPG/Strategy/Rouge-Lite games in recent memory as well.

The art style is beautiful as well, conveying the gothic atmosphere well. In fact, I can't find to much bad to say about this game. If you are interested in a challenging game that is only going to get better as it gets closer to its projected summer release day. The addicting gameplay will bring you back for more, More of your adventurers suffering brutal deaths and mind-crushing insanities. Managing the stress that leads to insanity is one of the more gripping and complex of the mechanics in the game. In my opinion, it is one of the defining traits of this game.

Even if these types of games don't exactly appeal to you, I still recommend it. The addicting gameplay will bring you in and the amount of polish will impress. Go buy this game, it will besome of the best 20 bucks you spent on video games.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
10.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 28
Early Access Review
Don't let my time played fool you! My offline time on the game is HUGE.

Amazing little game, really gets good when you start to lose IMO.

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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
56.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 27
Early Access Review
It has been one year and ten weeks now since I returned home to claim my birthright. The hamlet has grown under my good management, but grown into what? The sanitarium dominates the skyline beside the church. The wails of the sick and the insane join the chanting of the faithful, echoing throughout the night. The tavern has become a sprawling facility where debauchery attempts to hold madness at bay. The arrival of the stage coaches is a constant cycle, fresh blood to feed the unshakeable thirst of these corrupted lands my ancestor bequeathed to me. Many have fallen. The markers of heroes crowd the graveyard, many standing over empty earth, in memorial for champions left in the field. A few familiar faces remain. Brinon, a Hellion who has served me for almost a full year, as fierce as she is resolute in the face of madness. Papelion, a Crusader stricken queer by his trauma, yet still a mighty sword arm. They make their home in the guild house, become now a keep to hold evil at bay, and the blacksmith is their armory. Even now, a party patrols the ruins, seeking to end the devilry of a Necromancer lurking there. Their risk is great. Many have sacrificed life or soul to aid me in my quest to cleanse my ancestral home. And while I do not take the field, sometimes I wonder... What has it cost me to send so many to their deaths?
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