Darkwood is a unforgiving survival horror with a procedurally generated, open world. By blending RPG, roguelike and adventure elements together with a challenging difficulty, Darkwood aims to please players craving for a deep and rewarding experience.
User reviews: Very Positive (463 reviews)
Release Date: Jul 24, 2014

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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?

“Because we want to hear what you have to say about Darkwood - the good, the bad and the ugly. We still have a lot to do until we're satisfied with the game, and we believe the current version is a good balance between showing you what Darkwood is about, letting you decide if it has potential, and being early enough in development to have room for change based on your feedback.

On a general note, being able to have an impact on something you are excited about sounds really cool for us, and we would give A LOT if we could go back in time and put a piece of ourselves in a game we love. Thanks to Early Access, this is now possible.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“About a year (counting from July 2014), although that depends on a lot of things which will become clear during Early Access.”

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

“The final version will have pretty much more of everything, with possible overhauls of some of the current systems, and even major changes based on community feedback.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“It's very playable, with some of the features and content pretty polished, but also some that are pretty rough or even placeholder. The amount of content is also limited to the first chapter of the game.”

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

“The price of the game after the final release will be either equal or higher than during Early Access.”

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

“We read pretty much all of the suggestions posted on our forums, or the Steam discussions, so if you have something valuable to say, don't be afraid to speak out - even if it means bashing the game. We want to make Darkwood the best experience we can”
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$14.99
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Recommended By Curators

"Despite only being in Early Access, Darkwood is a shining gem in the survival-horror arena."
Read the full review here.

Recent updates View all (8)

December 9

What’s coming in Alpha 3?

Greetings!

Alpha 3′s main focus will be making nights exciting again! To do so, we had to make some big changes to other mechanics.

Consequences of death
Dying in normal mode means losing some of your skills, your currently held mutated items, and damaging all of the other items in your inventory. This sucks, as the mutated plants which you use to level up don’t grow back, which can be quite frustrating when you lose a few perks and can’t really regain them after some time. We could of course make them grow back after some time, but that would encourage boring grind.

So, in Alpha 3, dying means: dropping your inventory at the place you have been killed, and waking up somewhere in the wilderness at the beginning of the next day. You lose your belongings, but can regain them if you get back to the spot where you have died. Sound too easy? Not quite, as the time skip ties to the other mechanics:

Extracting essence
Mushrooms in the woods are more plentiful, but only certain rare kinds can be cooked for essence. This allows for bigger “trap” areas with a reward for successfully navigating them.

Things that can be cooked will rot after a certain amount of time after they have been picked up. Where do you find essence, you ask? Well…

The night
Currently, nights can be very intense at the beginning, but the excitement fades as you figure out how to defend yourself with no risks (like hiding in a corner behind a wardrobe). We have been experimenting quite a lot on how to overcome this, and came up with a solution that we think is pretty cool, and lets you play your way.

From now on, mutated flora and fauna will start appearing in the night, in different form. You will need to be on the lookout for them if you want to harvest their essence. You can still hide behind that wardrobe if you’re scared, but you will be missing out on some precious essence!

Image by Sir Smide II

Light now plays a bigger role, as staying in the shadows for too long will be a bad idea, so better fill up your generator before it gets dark!
We have also did some adjustments for the nights to be more fair, making them less random and based more on your actions, which leads us to…

Sound
You will need to pay much more attention to the sound you generate from now on. This means interacting with doors, moving objects, barricading etc. will bring attention to your location. This will be very important during the night, as you do not want to alert anyone to your presence.

AI changes
Stealth is harder and easier at the same time. If you are reckless, you will easily get spotted. But if you keep a low profile, you will be able to sneak through areas. Enemies will also be more forgiving in letting you know if they are alerted to your presence.

We will be entering the testing phase as soon as we balance out some of the new features, which should be this week. This update will probably be one of the last major alphas to bring big changes to mechanics, after which we will finally be able to move on to adding more content!

14 comments Read more

November 6

Alpha 2.1

Here is a balance and bugfix update for you lovely mortals:

Changes
- Balanced loot / object spawns. Hopefully no more empty crates!
- Balanced melee weapons in terms of durability drain and barricade damage. You can no longer destroy a barricade with a plank with nails :P
- Balanced barricade damage for enemies.
- Beartraps, mushrooms etc. no longer spawn in the middle of nowhere. Instead, they appear around trees like in previous versions.
- The Saw eats less gasoline.
- You can hold the Jump button to automatically jump over stuff, instead of having to press it when you get near something jumpable.
- You can do the secondary attack while running.

Fixes
- Added missing Burned House map icon
- Compressed more music. This may help those of you who have been experiencing out of memory crashes.
- Fixed bug when you had to attack a barricade one more time to destroy it, even though it's durability was 0.
- Fixed loot respawning after loading the game in some containers.
- Fixed indestructible barricades.
- Added more container space to the new hideouts.
- Fixed culling which sometimes did not work in dreams.
- Fixed freeze on player death if had Additional Hotbar perk, but did not have anything in the slot.
- Fixed savages getting stuck on window barricades.
- Fixed bugs with displaying some barricades.
- Balanced junk from scavenging bear traps.
- Removed chompers from Forest biome.
- Fixed Well being reactivated when loaded a game during night.
- Fixed fog parallax in burned houses.

If all is well with this update, we would like to start working on Alpha 3, which will probably focus on the nights in Darkwood.

The Acid Wizards

25 comments Read more
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Report bugs and leave feedback for this game on the discussion boards

Current features

  • Randomly generated, open world.
  • The first chapter of the game.
  • Several skills and perks to choose from when leveling your character.
  • Several types of enemies, each having a different set of behaviours.
  • Choices and consequences. These will be much more visible in the later chapters.
  • Crafting, barricades and traps.
  • Mysteries, secrets, and surprises!
  • A couple of melee and (rare) ranged weapons.
  • A few NPCs to talk, trade with, complete tasks for, or kill.

Planned features

  • More of everything! Characters, enemies, loot, skills, events, locations, you name it!
  • Finishing and polishing the first chapter, and adding the remaining one(s).
  • A probable overhaul of the crafting system.
  • A better, prettier, more efficient lighting system (hopefully).
  • Optimization.
  • Lots of other stuff that might come up during Early Access!

About This Game

PLEASE READ BEFORE BUYING:
Darkwood is in Early Access right now. This means the game will have bugs (ranging from minor annoyances to not being able to run the game at all) and will change during development. Your savegames will be wiped on each update, which will happen about once a month. However it may happen that if we are in the middle of implementing a new chapter, or making a transition to a newer version of our game engine, these updates may be slower. If these things bother you and you'd rather just play the finished game, simply wait until the final release.
PLEASE READ THE KNOWN ISSUES THREAD BEFORE BUYING

Darkwood is a unforgiving, story-driven survival horror with a procedurally generated, open world. If you crave for a deep and rewarding experience with dense atmosphere, memorable characters, satisfying exploration, crafting and challenging combat, Darkwood will suck you in for days.

The fear of unknown is powerful. Your senses will be deceived by Darkwood's surreal terrors. No answer will be given to you for free, yet somewhere in the woods lies the truth, an explanation to what has happened in this godforsaken place.

  • By day, explore the randomly generated woods, scavenge for materials and weapons, discover secrets, solve mysteries and talk, trade with or kill the various inhabitants of Darkwood.
  • By night, find shelter, barricade, set up traps and hide or defend yourself from the horrors that lurk in the dark.
  • Gain skills or perks by extracting essence from mutated fauna and flora and injecting it into your bloodstream. This might also have various unexpected consequences...
  • Each action you take will have impact on Darkwood and its inhabitants. The choices you make will define the story which you will experience.
  • As days go by, the lines between reality and nightmarish fantasies will begin to blur. You will start to question the protagonist's sanity, but may also stumble upon your own hidden fears...

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows Vista or later
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.8Ghz or equivalent
    • Memory: 3 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Geforce 8800GT / ATI Radeon HD 4850
    • Hard Drive: 2 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Requirements may change during development. Minimum resolution: 1280x768
    Minimum:
    • OS: OSX 10.6 or higher
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.8Ghz or equivalent
    • Memory: 3 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Geforce 8800GT / ATI Radeon HD 4850
    • Hard Drive: 2 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Requirements may change during development. Minimum resolution: 1280x768
    Minimum:
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 or later
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.8Ghz or equivalent
    • Memory: 3 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Geforce 8800GT / ATI Radeon HD 4850
    • Additional Notes: Requirements may change during development. Minimum resolution: 1280x768
Helpful customer reviews
9 of 10 people (90%) found this review helpful
10.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 28
Early Access Review
I bought this game during the Autumn Sale and I am very pleasently surprised. When I first got into the game it was a little weird to be because I've personally never played a game with this perspective before, but once i got the hang of it and found myself venturing into the creepy woods, I saw how immersive this game was. With the creepy noises of stepping on branches and the barks of rabid dogs I found myself scared for my life. This game also has a really nice crafting system where you can find abundant items like clothe and wood and mix it with some more rare items found in chests to make very useful items to use to your advantage or sell to the wolfman for ammo or other items. The lighting sysetm in this game is genius as well, where in a house your flashlight only shows a little of the room but when u turn on a lamp it brightens most of the room where you are looking. And when you explore the woods your light grows dimmer and dimmer the further you go until you need to craft a torch to see anything. some minor bugs were found in the game but you must expect that from a Early Access game. With all this in mind I give this game probably a 9.5/10 in its current state because of how amazingly done this game was. The immersion effect of this game is close to if not better than the Amnesia series and even the Slender games. Thanks and I urge you to pick this game up while its still on sale.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
17.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 5
Early Access Review
So far Darkwood has been kinda like that long lost uncle in the family; dark and quirky and even tho your mother said to stay away you are somehow transfixed by it. Only a few hours in and it's everything, thus far, I've wanted it to be. The controls are like butta and in fact maybe too much at times when you over-run something important or "teethy".

First hours were spent exploring the general starting area to get an idea of what and where I was placed which led to quite a few moments of enjoyment as well shock and awe. Like any good survivor I took my licks and pushed forward. My last rest stop was with a curious old lady and an inspiring musician. I fear I may not get back going this far as the night is quickly coming.

The game continues and likely evolves and if you have the time and the scratch (money for those younger gamers) it may be something you would like to pick up. Optimal setup is a darkened room, quality headset and gamma set appropriately; not pumped way up in an attempt to defeat it. Let the darkness in, let it sweep you away..

I will likely update as my journey continues..
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8 of 11 people (73%) found this review helpful
25.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 25
Early Access Review
Night is 2spoopy4me so I decide to cheat and wedge myself between a wardrobe and a corner so the savages can't get me.
gg. no re.
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7 of 10 people (70%) found this review helpful
2.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 18
Early Access Review
Such a romanticly erotic masterpiece, kidding. This game takes an underrated perspective, and makes it work well again. Most games that have been released with such an art direction as well as perspective have been highly lack luster. this game marries the concept of ambience(via lighting, audio and environment generation) with the idea of having a false sense of awareness in the space that you currently occupy to create a sense of fear that has been hard to find since the original resident evil games. notably, this game is a true Survival Horror game with a psychologically engaging story told in the most spectacular way. The story is told in a very david lynch~ish style, similar to hotline miami.... but lets not make that mistake and get the two mixed up as they are both two extremely different game.

to cut everything else I would say short... because there is plenty I can say about this game...
Get it... It is definatly worth its price tag in its current state... the story will build an anxiety that will make you beg the developers to some how travel into the future, steal the finished copy... and release it now... which would cause some sort of crazy ♥♥♥ paradox. the gameplay is soooo solid in its current state... I wonder what else they will add as I am quite satified with it as is. and last... The sense of fear and just truely feeling lost at times in the forest is truely nerve racking especially as night fall comes.

Key Elements:
~Intense Combat Mecanics which are also used to interact with the environments in various ways.
~Object interaction... Multiple options to interact with objects via "drop Down menu" like most D&D games.
~Lighting, Creates a horrifying tone espeially when the developers literally take all light away during the night... Insanely scary, dont change that.
~Atmosphere, The sound creates a dread that will haunt you and keep you on edge for your entire play through.
~sense of exploration, The map system is actually an interesting one as you have no idea where you are until you discover something aside from your hideout... giving you a "sense of direction, It totally works for this game.

Get this game... its worth yur time and money..

~Mike.M

p.s.
sorry for the late review, I bought the gae over the summer... looooved it... and played it recently and just... WOW!
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5 of 7 people (71%) found this review helpful
7.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 19
Early Access Review
Darkwood is a great survival/scavenging game that has unique mechanics, creepy characters, and a mysterious storyline that will leave you wanting to know more. This is one of the first games i've seen that make it absolutely imperitive to return to home base every night and it adds a sense of urgency and panic when night begins to set. Nighttime, while easily one of the most difficult parts of the game, loses it's horror scariness but nothing gets you more panicked in this game than when you have no weapons and you hear something beating in your barricades. to any survival/horror game player, i would recommend this 10 times out of 10 and i eagerly await the updates to come.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
16.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 30
Early Access Review
I got darkwood a few weeks ago and have sunken a good 8 hours into it so far. I'll start the basics.


GAMEPLAY:

Good, but a bit choppy (probably due to my computer) and a few glitches here and there. But considering it's still in Alpha, that's looking pretty optimistic. Combat is tough to get the hang of, but satisfying when you finally land a powerful blow right on that annoying mutant wolf's snout. I can't seem to figure out whether the game wants to punish you for or encourage you to explore and experiment.


GRAPHICS:

Excellent 2D graphics that add even more to the game's already gripping atomsphere, but due to my terrible computer I have to run it at the lowest resolution.


ATMOSPHERE:

Superb. The eerie sounds of the forest blend with the crunching of leaves and snapping of twigs beneath your feet to form a permating feeling of spookiness. The enemies are a perfect mix of weird and downright freaky, and I found myself fighting the nearly irresistable urge to turn around and flee while exploring some areas. I jumped at nearly every out-of-place sound, especially at night.


STORY:

While I have encountered very little plot to speak of so far, the game is very early in development, and I assume much more will be added in the near future. I also think there's quite a bit that I haven't yet discovered on my map.


Overall, I give the game a solid 9/10. I would happily get mauled by a crazy dude living in the woods again.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
47.7 hrs on record
Posted: December 3
Early Access Review
Not liking Darkwood is like not liking pizza, you can say it all you want, but you know you love it.
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859 of 921 people (93%) found this review helpful
7.1 hrs on record
Posted: July 24
Early Access Review
I'm about one... maybe two good jump scares away from being institutionalized. Playing as an Indonesian schoolgirl with a magic phone, an archeologist with amnesia, and a toddler with diapers full to the brim has had an ill effect on me. My heart just can't take it – my mind just can't take it. The filaments that hold my fragile psyche aloft are pulled taut, straining as each frayed fiber falters and my sanity slips closer towards the cold, dark depths of derangement. Which isn't super great, really. But I'll gladly surrender my faculties for a game as fun as “Darkwood.”

“Darkwood” isn't a “Slender” or “Amnesia” clone. This is a game in the vein of old school horror where atmosphere was king – you'll hear lots of comparisons to the “Silent Hill” series. The key to good horror is cultivating a crushing, foreboding world environment... one that fosters paranoia and unease the whole way through. Sure, jumpscares are necessary to finally break the tension, but the best horror games are dripping and oozing in atmosphere. The whole world should FEEL hostile, not just the denizens that inhabit it. This game doesn't want you playing it, no. It wants to play you.

Here's what you can expect playing “Darkwood:” your hands should be clammy with an itch you can't scratch, not now. Your face should be inches from your monitor, blinking only when necessary, scanning wildly back and forth for something, ANYTHING, to betray the game's ill intent. As you talk with each bizarre NPC you should feel nervous, wondering when the conversation will go from benignly creepy to malignantly violent. And when you finally encounter an unspeakable horror, you'll have to make that gut decision whether to run or stand your ground. I recommend running. Like with all survivor horrors, you are at a notable disadvantage. You'll also be able to set up hasty barricades... rocking back and forth as claws scratch and jaws click outside, tearing your defenses down piece by piece.

There are a lot of cool things happening with this game. Your vision is funneled, forcing the aforementioned wild scanning. You can see the world generally in your “peripheral vision,” but you have to be looking relatively dead-on to see any actual threats. They'll be effectively invisible otherwise. You'll inject yourself with concoctions extracted from fauna and flora that provide mutations. They will grant a boost in one way and a hindrance in another. There's a crafting aspect that's pretty basic right now but feels natural... rough and raw. Besides health you have a stamina meter, one you'll have to keep an eye on when deciding whether to fight or fly. Graphically speaking, “Darkwood” isn't exactly next gen, but it is highly stylized and creepy. It's a beautiful, dark, Gothic painting – like the ones where the eyes follow you wherever you go and it talks smack about your mother. And the music will chill you to the bone. If the environment and enemies start to give you a little break, don't worry. The music will swell and put you right back on edge, or the heavy creaks and sudden cracks of the sound design.

Like any good horror this is a challenging game. I do recommend playing with permadeath on. Adds to the spook factor! Anticipate shedding lots of your own pixelated blood. My biggest gripes? It's hard to determine sometimes (between how dark the game is and how... generally dark the colors are) what I can search and interact with and what's just a creepy thingy. The controls also take some getting used to, but that seems appropriate considering the genre.

Now seeing that this is an Early Access title my recommendation is tentative and subject to change. But at the moment there is nothing out on Steam quite like this. Every day you hear people bemoan the death of “true survival horror,” myself being one of them. Well folks, it wasn't dead. Just waiting for the right moment to sing its siren song... and draw us in at least once more, into those dark and dreary woods where light dares not penetrate and your screams can't quite escape.
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412 of 430 people (96%) found this review helpful
15.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 26
Early Access Review
<Subject to change>

My first few hours in Darkwood were certainly very interesting, after the impressive prologue I decided to go speak to an NPC i was advised to find. After I did this I realised daylight was running out, and here's what happened next:

-Returned to my safehouse and pushed a wardrobe up against a gaping hole in the wall.
-Panicked because I didn't bother to collect the tools necessary to barricade the house.
-Everything is now pitch black, my cone of vision is tiny
-I weep as I slowly walk myself to the 'front lobby' room because it has no windows to reduce the chance of being spotted.
-I hear the moans of some unknown ethereal horror
-Check both the exterior and interior door to ensure they are closed
-The moaning gets louder
-The action prompt for the front door now says 'close door', meaning it has been opened
-My cone of vision is still 2-3ft btw
-I quickly close the door
-The prompt changed to 'close door' again
-I close the door again
-Moaning is still extremely loud
-Continue in this pattern for 60 seconds in sheer terror before the door finally stays closed for a while.
-I sigh a breath of relief
-Something swiftly moves past the far edge of my cone of vision
-* very loud moaning continues *
-The monster was in the lobby with me for the whole night
-I'm sure i'm going to die
-Suddenly Daybreak
-*Day 2*
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254 of 289 people (88%) found this review helpful
1.4 hrs on record
Posted: July 24
Early Access Review
Dear Journal:
I keep coming back to life, despite my best efforts. I thought death would be a release, but it's only a continuation of the torment. In what I'm sure is a futile effort to keep my sanity, I will try to catalogue my various deaths.

Death 1:
No weapons in sight and night is falling rapidly. In a misguided attempt to make the animals friendlier towards me, I've brewed a strange concoction from the local mycological flora and injected myself with it. The only effect I've seen towards my original intention was that the rabbits have stopped gnashing their teeth when I approach and have opted for a more subtle, indignant sideways glance. Night fell and I drank the well water as I was told by the nonchalant wolfman (nonchalant in that he seemed to have no compunctions that he was a freak of nature) that woke me up. The generator has failed and my only light is the mocking phosphorescent glow of my last flare. I hear things approaching. Hungry things. I've pushed my wardrobe in front of the window in the hopes that it would stop them. It did not, and a howling naked man has bashed my skull in and, presumably, eaten me.

Death 2:
Woken up by the wolfman again. He doesn't seem to remember me. I show him the dogtag as before and, as before, he tells me to seek out the chicken lady. My travels this time have been more fruitful. I've discovered several nonfunctional vehicles nearby, each containing a substantial amount of fuel. Hopefully this will help me keep the generator running this time. I've also found enough material to fashion a crude weapon for my inevitable self-defense. On top of that, I've found a bear trap with which to lay a trap for any more au naturel forest men that want to avail themselves of my sweetmeats. Once again, night falls and I drink from the well. I'm somewhat prepared this time. Again they come. I catch one in the bear trap and proceed to beat him into submission. Shortly after, another bursts in behind me, catching me by surprise. A pitched battle erupts, with me barely surviving to fell my opponent. I'm bleeding badly, but have enough rags to fashion a welcome, if somewhat unsanitary, bandage. Eventually morning arives and I stride wrecklessly back out into the forest, perchance to happen upon more provisions and survive another night in this hellish place. I happen upon a corpse, seemingly hidden under a jagged thicket. Immediately upon poking it, it explodes and I'm slain by its cadaverous stench.

Death 3:
Again the wolfman comes. I think he's mocking me. Is it a he? It sounds male. I have little luck in finding anything useful in my wanderings. The woods are crawling with wolves (the normal kind... I didn't think to stop and check their gender), and I have to skirt around them constantly. I find some alcohol, rags, and a lighter, but little else. At least I can keep warm with this, one way or another. Night falls and I drink the water. I'm beginning to wonder if I should be following the wolfman's advice at this point. For all I know, it's the well water that's keeping me here. I can do nothing but sit in my dark house, hoping they don't find me and tear me limb from limb. My hopes are completely unfounded. Having no other weapons, I quickly fashion a crude Molotov cocktail and hold it at the ready for when something crashes through the window in front of me. Alas, one crashes in behind me. Panicking, I drop the freshly lit incendiary at my feet, immediately catching myself and the wildman ablaze. I'm not sure which of us died first. I can now officially say that immolation has been my least favorite way to go.

Death 4:
Banshee... or witch? I'm unsure at this point.

Death 5:
Pack of wolves. Gender unknown.

Death 6:
%$@&ing CORPSE BOMB!

Death 7:
Ok, this is getting a little ridiculous. I'm just going to sit in my house and pretend I'm dead. Maybe the universe, or whatever cruel deity placed me here, will forget that I exist and move on to torment some other poor soul... Nope.

Ten out of ten. Would die again!
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139 of 156 people (89%) found this review helpful
5.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 27
Early Access Review
This games makes a great impression in the prologue and in your first night out of the tutorial.
Mine went like this.

-I was able to gather a bit of resources and boarded up a door and a window
-I turned on the generator since I moved a lamp into a room I thought would be perfect
-I moved the lamp to the window which was boarded up so I could see outside as well as inside
-As the night got darker I see creatures outside through the small cracks within the boarded up window
-Moans closing in and sounds of furniture moving in the room next to mine
-The generator dies and everything is now pitch black
-I sit for a while in the darkness
-When the door opens and this THING enters
-I was luckily able to kill it with my plank with nails in it
-Close the door and hold out
-Day 2 starts and I leave the room I was in
-I check the house to see how it got in
-NOTHING was moved from its original spot and no windows or doors were broken
So...how did it get in?
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146 of 173 people (84%) found this review helpful
25.1 hrs on record
Posted: July 24
Early Access Review
*Early Access Review - Subject to Change
I backed this game up from Indiegogo and I am happy to say I am 100% satisfied by what it is at this stage and the things to come. Creepy, immersive, rogue-like and top down horror game with sounds,art and gameplay that will keep you on the edge of your feet, you'll also die alot. because this game is absolutely brutal with permadeath on.

To start off you'll have a couple of save files you can choose from with the ability to skip the entire prologue or play it. You'll also be able to turn on or off permadeath, the real way to play but that is up to you ;).

The game starts you off with explaining to you about a man with a dream, You'll be treated with some seriously scary art and you'll be very confused. You'll search around a bit to find an axe to break a passage but at the same time find your dog dieing and you'll have to make a choice, to end his suffering or to leave him. Now back to the log and you'll learn the tutorial of the game, the basics of attack and how to craft and the things you need to create to survive int his horrible hell. As you head south you'll find a cabin and there you'll meet a man inside which will begin the entire story of DarkWoods.

Darkwood is very immersive and scary, You'll feel it as you move your character around this living breathing world. The sound is downright phenomenal and done brilliantly to give so you can feel the world. It will scare you when you turn corners in this game. From the winds blowing across the trees, to the moving shadows, and the eerie noises around the woods. The characters you'll meet in this game is also very creepy, with well animated features drawn with personality combined with decent dialogue.

The gameplay is a survival top down game horror game that takes place in the woods somewhere in russia where theres day and night cycle with items and locations in the woods randomly generated and randomly placed. The story and building layout is usually the same, so are the quests but the amount of randomization is enought to keep you satisfied. Everything is done well to give you the feeling that everytime you step out its never the same. Also read everyone's dialogue or read your journals, yes Dialogue will give you hints of location changes of certain npcs you'll want to take advantage of, especially the wolf merchant. The further you go out into the woods the darker and more dangerous it'll get So keep your base in check because the map in this game doesn't tell you where your position is. You'll have to remember the way back. Also BE WARNED OF THE WELL MECHANIC YOU MUST DRINK FROM THE WELL TO SURVIVE EACH NIGHT or you will suffer death hence forcing you to return to base every night. The goal of the game at the moment is To explore the quest and survive.

The game mechanic works by your character facing a direction you'll see a frontal cone view, You can only see where you point your mouse and whats under certaint trees with the cursor on it, even if an enemy is behind you you'll have to look behind otherwise your vision is obscured. You also can't see past trees or buildings which will give you you immersion and realism. You'll also have to be on your feet and aware at all times.
The top left displays your health in red, stamina in grey and buffs along with debuffs go the very top left. Use up too much stamina and you'll move at a very slow rate so sprint wisely otherwise become easy target for monsters. Also at the same time the crafting and inventory is limited, but as you progress in the game you'll be able to discover recipes to craft things such as barricades, torches, traps, healing items and weapons and collect mushrooms to inject yourself so that you can improve your trait, later on with this feature you'll have to sacrifice a certain trait to gain a new one. Some will help your vision, some seems sorta useless at the moment.

You'll also be able to interact with objects to move it around like book cases to cover door etc or pick locks or even break down doors. To attack you'll have to equip an item into the limited 3 hotbar slots and then hold down right mousebutton followed by pressing left mouse button so the controls feels very unique and fits the game perfectly. It will take time to dig into your inventory, pull out an item and to actually use it, Also note to set up a trap it'll take time to set up along with searching large cases or items. Everything in this game adds to that realism and hardcore of survival games.

The game is hard, the elements of the woods will get to you, There are things you can accidently step on such as mushroom and bodies that will poison you if you don't watch your footing, patrolling monsterous dogs and creatures from the very depth of your nightmares which screams in the middle of the night out for your blood. When day turns to dusk it is time to go back to base and hold out as long as you can until morning to continue your survival. Currently the best way is to probabaly cut line of sight from monsters in the dark and pray that they won't find you. Probabaly will need more work ont his mechanic to give it a little more to do than just hiding in corners especially on permadeath mode.

This game is a survivalist horror hardcore dream and it was worth the wait, it is currently in alpha 1.0 and it is pretty solid gameplay save some bugs here and there and the fact that it is unfinished. The woods might be very dark and seeing things might require a gamme adjustment, Inventory is very scarce so be ready to horde since many items do not respawn so it can be tough to find those supplies. Be warned that you will die. I've played hours and only survived 4 days, most of my friends are stuck at 4. You'll be playing this game quite a bit my friends but that is what makes it so great.

+ Phenomenal Sounds that is immersive, the heavy breathing, the monsters and the woods itself gives it life and horror at the same time really powerful sounds and brilliantly done.
+ Rogue-like environment placement of items and places of discoveries
+ Realism from what you do, searching, crafting, setting up traps, learning to fight your enemies, the interaction between items. Also the
+ Creepy, animated art from the nicely designed characters and the map itself, everything is alive including the trees waving, grass blowing.
+ The difficulty of this game is Hard, Brutal, and you're absoulutely dieing.
+ immersion level +++

- Need more ways to fight back monsters, Corner surviving at night in corner with vision blocking is fun and scary but can get really overplayed.
- Multiplayer!
- Game still in beta, things in work
- Dark, too dark hard to tell if you throw something off sometimes.
- sound is a little loud, even when turned down but its damn good
- Game isn't done so don't expect to finish the main story.
- Bugs here and there but very minor
- Characters should have voice acting to those dialogues, creepy voice acting.
- loading time in the beginning takes a bit of time, due to generatings of the rogue-like environment even for my pc.
- Needs auto Check for skip prologue, sometimes forgetting to hit it is annoying


Currently trying to pass day 4 on permadeath
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63 of 66 people (95%) found this review helpful
4.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 25
Early Access Review
The Darkwood forest is infested with all sorts of vile creatures, mysterious friends and foes, an eerie atmosphere, and a sense of dread like you drank contaminated water out of desperation and regretted it instantly afterwards. You are alone, but you are not truly alone. All of the inhabitants are after you, want something from you, or haunts you with their presence. All are ravaged, infested with darkness, except for rabbits that hop in front of your path, scurrying away because they know too well that Darkwood is not a safe place. It is not something you have figured out yet, but soon, you will become one with Darkwood and all of its manifestations. One nightmare after another, you wonder if this is all a nightmare that you manifested in your mind, or is it all real? You embark in this dark journey to put the pieces together, scavenging to survive through the night and one night only, because that is your main fear. Will I survive through the night?

Darkwood is a survival-horror, roguelike, sandbox game with a story. The player can choose to venture into Darkwood using permadeath or no-permadeath. It is highly recommended to play Darkwood with permadeath. It increases the tension, vulnerability, and sense of dread which all add more to the atmosphere and overall experience. Darkwood is unforgiving, merciless, and it is not for players with a weak heart.

It is important to note that Darkwood does have a story. The player can explore, unravel secrets, and the other mysteries in the dark forest. In your dark journey, you will meet the inhabitants of Darkwood. The residents of Darkwood consists of different, unique, twisted individuals. You will meet characters that you would never expect to meet in all shapes, sizes, and forms, equipped with unique personalities. Some are informative, some of them may want or demand things in return, and some work on incentives. They make some of Tim Burton's creations seem tame.

The visuals, art style, and graphics in Darkwood are easy on the eyes and they lend themselves to the atmosphere. The visuals are up to standard for an Indie game and especially for this particular type of game in this genre. While walking through the forest, the shadows create imagery that look almost like hallucinations. "Am I really seeing this? Or is that a corpse that I am seeing?" In Darkwood, trust your instincts more than your vision. The color palette suits the environments and the atmosphere. It creates a dark tone and an overall sense of dread that looms over you. Dark areas can be lit up with a light source such as a torch, a match, or a flare (items so far in the game). They light up the path for you to explore and gain access to new areas. But explore with extreme caution - you do not know what is around the corner. You may step on troop of mushrooms and become poisoned. Wander too far and you may become lost, run out of any light sources, and distance yourself further away from your base and safe haven. But is it really safe?

Darkwood is played from the top-down point of view with a cone of vision. While the cone vision is not a light source, it does show the player what you "can see." If a "horror" is chasing you and you are running away from it, your cone of vision will be in front of you because that is what you can only see while you are running away. The enemy that is chasing you from behind will not be visible to you; not until it is inside your cone of vision. Even if the foe is out of the range of the cone of vision, it will not be visible either. This adds suspense and it makes it more challenging when you must "fight or take flight." In Darkwood, you will need to pick your battles. You may wonder: If it is from a top-down perspective, wouldn't you be able to see everything? And wouldn't that reveal all of your surroundings and everything in it? No, that is not how it works. Your cone of vision gives you some visibility, but you will need your light source to penetrate the darkness and light your path. The rest of the areas that is not within your vicinity will be dark. It is not as dark as an auditorium with a spotlight on a person, but it is really dark. Often times, you will not see an object until you get really close to it, even with a light source.

So far, there are several items that you can loot, a few weapons, and crafting recipes in Chapter 1. I have found three weapons so far - plank with nails, an axe, and a shovel that are melee weapons. Other helpful items that could be used as weapons or hunting, is a bear trap. You can also make molotovs. And with glass bottles, you can break it into shards and use it as an immobilizing trap. One of the coolest game mechanics that I found very interesting was the use of mushrooms or cooking mushrooms turning it into a drug/chemical substance. When you explore the forest, loot all the mushrooms that you find. Gather them and you may have enough to fill a syringe. Once the syringe is filled up, use the injection and it will grant you a new skill. I thought this was a really unique game mechanic and I cannot recall it ever being used before from my knowledge of many years of gaming since the 90s. It certainly took me by surprise and I just loved it. Further, there are recipes hidden throughout Darkwood like a recipe to make a "lantern" that I found along the way. This of course will require you to explore and search for the materials to craft and make a lantern. In your inventory, you can experiment and try to combine items together to create a new item from that combination. Just a tip: you can eat mushrooms! They heal you. Also, drinking water from the well at your base will heal you as well. Some of the most essential items are wood logs and mushrooms. Loot them all the time. If you find yourself running out of inventory space, craft what you can craft, and store away items at your base in the crates that you do not need at the moment.

The movement, movement speed, and combat feel fluid and responsive in Darkwood. If there is one gaming pet-peeve, that is clunky controls. You can sprint, but your character uses up stamina or endurance. In combat, you can hit harder by simply holding the right mouse button (RMB) to pull back and swing harder. It uses stamina as well. You can click LMB without the hold to make a light attack. With careful timing, while strafing, you can time your attacks while dodging attacks (there is no dodgeroll, don't worry!). So far, I have only used melee weapons and the bear trap, although I have found a gun clip and materials to make a molotov. Combat was surprisingly satisifying for a top-down game.

You can hear (audio, sound) every thump with every hit you land on an enemy. Weapons do deteriorate indicated by the item going from white to red on the weapon icon. I have found one NPC that you can trade items with and make deals. Since there is no money currency, because why would you have any, trade is on a barter system. For instance, if you find a piece of valuable jewelry, you can trade that for an item that you may need, or you can trade it in for information. Other NPCs will want information as well, so you may have to search and uncover information that you could trade for an important item that may be of aid.

Darkwood works on a level design system of randomly generated levels.

The audio, sound design, and soundtrack are fantastic. The music sets the dark mood and tone. And every crack of a melee weapon can be heard with authority.

There is so much to talk about and Darkwood is barely in Early Access with only one chapter! As you can tell, I am very pleased with the content that is available at the moment. It not only has surpassed my expectations, it already has me hooked with its dark charm and vast potential. I genuinely hope that they continue to support and add content to the game well after the final release.
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63 of 68 people (93%) found this review helpful
29.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 16
Early Access Review
It’s 2:30 AM and I had myself backed into the last small and desolate room of my home base. My flashlight trained, not on the sounds of wet acidic undergrowth that has taken over what used to be the foyer to my hideout, but the splintering door hanging to its frame on the far side of the room from me. The only taste for flare in this room is a stool I have jammed against the door as one last final barricade. This was my last stand and I’m ill equipped to face the horrors that have been tearing their way after me all night.
In Darkwood, the night is a stressful 5 minutes of gameplay where you shore up your defenses and hope that the creatures of darkness don’t tear you to pieces before day breaks and you are once again free to unravel the mystery of the plague afflicting these lands. Your only clue, a doctor who still lives somewhere nearby with the forlorn mission of curing the local villagers of their blight. The most respectable villagers’ bodies have rotted and their minds have frayed. Their gruesomely drawn images are ghastly warning s of what happens to those who linger in the Darkwood too long, a thought that scratches at the back of my mind with each passing night spent in your hideout. To survive you consume odd mushrooms and tainted meat which granting powers to cope with the cruel forest in which even the trees seek to claim you by clawing at your line of sight with crow laden branches. Your tainted new powers come with a price, nauseating side effects and warped hallucinations that could be clues to what went wrong in these woods or signs that your mind is decaying like those around you. Darkwood is a cruel game but no more than a true horror game should be, it challenges the player with every encounter but if you really want to get the full effect play on permadeath.
Dawn is almost here now, I think that I should be able to make it through the night when the doorknob turns and the door creaks ever so slowly open and rather than raining open in a hail of splinters like the horrors have done to the rest of my house. Monsters are wiggling their way through the crack and pushing my barricade effortlessly to the side I aim my pellet gun in hopes that I can survive through one more night in the Darkwood.
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107 of 139 people (77%) found this review helpful
2.8 hrs on record
Posted: July 24
Early Access Review
Nothing is going to hurt me Nothing is going to hurt me Nothing is going to OH GOD WHAT WAS THAT
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58 of 66 people (88%) found this review helpful
19.4 hrs on record
Posted: July 27
Early Access Review
I'm alone in a wood house that somehow lost its front entrance. I push a cabinet on the passage, to block any of those things from coming in at night. Then I lock myself in a room I previously barricaded the window, and put broken glass outside, in the living room, to hear when something is attempting to enter. I hold my plank with nails as if it was a saint.

The night is alive, the house creeks as it breathes the unnatural night wind, a feral dog that almost killed me during the day is barking outside, as the devil himself was smiling to him. Then the dog dies with a loud screech. Something otherworldly feminine screams... The cabinet is pushed back with a loud noise. And the only sound that will make me lose it is the broken glass being stepped on.

I can't see anything in the dark, but I desperately try to, with my back to the wall to avoid unnecessary danger. Then I hear the door opening, and my hair follicles erecting on my arm tell me that something is in the room with me. It didn't make any noise on the broken glass, because it floats. It's a ghost, and its scream is hellish.

Darkwood is one of those rare games, that when you purchase, you will feel an experience you'll never have, to be in another world, to suffer things that don't exist. You will suffer physically, your heartbeat will go up, you'll get goosebumps and curse outside noises for interfering with the game.
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79 of 99 people (80%) found this review helpful
3.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 24
Early Access Review
I backed this game during kickstarter so I got my hands on it a few hours earlier - here are my thoughts.
This game is in alpha stage, so if you want finished product, just wait.

This game is HARD. I mean like your blood everywhere hard! Very good for hardcore players, not so good for casual ones :).
Overall gameplay is really good (crafting system, random map, fighting, barricading etc.)
Atmosphere is excelent (alongside with really good music)! Creepy and sometimes even really scary.
Story looks interesting as well.

Just to let you know, my first hour of gameplay went a little bit like this - A few minutes in, I died like 3 times. Then I crafted plank with nails - time to beat that **** *** enemies! (I died 2 times, not killing a single one XD) Then i found abandoned house - Yaay! Some monster guarding it killed me... Time to make molotov! Missed while throwing molotov - died.

In conclusion - If you like hard games, where you have to cry blood to get somewhere, this is for you.
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266 of 389 people (68%) found this review helpful
3.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 24
Early Access Review
This game gave me darkwood
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50 of 55 people (91%) found this review helpful
6.6 hrs on record
Posted: July 29
Early Access Review
Let me draw a scenario here, based on the experience I've had.


It's the tenth day surviving in this scary, haunting world. Monsters are everywhere, and gathering firewood becomes a frightening task. By now, you'd suspect I'm getting used to nightfall. This day I'm more prepared than any other. I've found a fireaxe on the floor of a crazed pig lady's house, and all I had to do is kill her to keep it. In this world, I'm growing used to not have sympathy for anything. In her house, I loot a bear trap still in good condition, some empty bottles, and mushrooms growing in the corners. I know by now that it's more useful to leave broken bottles on the floor as traps than thinking of carrying water. With a few belongings, I head back to my home, where the story requires me to drink from a fountain before nighttime if I am to survive.

I begin preparing for the eventual nightfall. I had half a gasoline jug left, and I pour it into my generator, only for the comfort of light and electricity during the night. As for defense, I keep a room fully barricaded to keep myself safe. There are three windows, and a doorway to the rest of the house. All the windows I have covered in wooden planks, but the door I leave open, if I need to make an escape. To keep the doorway defended, I dragged over a filing cabinet from another room and placed it in front of the doorway. In front of two of the windows, I have other things blocking the way along with the wooden barricade; that being a stool and a safe. Not the best at blocking the way, but it's all I have. I scatter broken glass in front of two windows, and the bear trap on the third.

Dusk is now turning the world red, and I begin the final steps of preparing for the night. I turn on the generator and the lamps inside all switch on. As of now I'm still uncertain if light attracts the monsters or not, but I feel safer if I have a lamp with me. The night comes, and the well water level has risen far enough for me to take a drink. As soon as I drink, I run through the now dark house and bunker myself in the room. I push the cabinet in front door, turn on the lamp, and begin to wait in the corner.

At first, the night is quiet. I believe that this may be a safe night, and no curious monsters will want to come for me, but that soon changes. I can hear creaking coming from the hallway, and then, a knock on the door. It starts to bang, the whole room shaking, and I run as fast as I can to push against the other side of the cabinet and begin to push. Wood starts to splinter off from the door, again and again, until the door bursts open. The cabinet is still in the way. It begins to push as I push, me trying to keep it steady. Then I start to hear another windows barricade getting attacked as well. I lose control of the cabinet, and it begins to slide sideways, as I push too hard on one side and it pushes on the other. It's now in the room. I back up, turning towards the bear trap in hopes to get it caught. Then I see it, a humanoid beast split down the center, from the head to its belly, filled with blood and teeth. It's the first night that I see these types, and my strategy for them has to be learned on the spot. I raise my axe and get a direct hit. Then another hit, but this time it knicks me too. I step back, and as it leaps to me, it falls into the bear trap and gets itself killed. I didn't feel safe just yet, as the crashing from the window was over, and as I looked to the side of the room, all I could see was a broken, open window, and my piles of glass, now filled with blood, with no dead monster. It jumps me from the side, taking out half of my health. As I turn around to fight it, there turns out to be not one, but two humanoid split beasts, too much for me. By now, my heart is pounding out of my chest. I run out the door, trying to shut doors that I can, some sucessful, some not. Outside is pitch black, thundering and raining, and hopelessly I try to reach the shack with the generator.

I manage to shut the door behind me. I'm bleeding out, and I left all my bandages in the room. The generator turns off. A monster hiding in the room kills me from behind.

I wake up.

Day 11 begins.




Every single day of this game is a thrilling nightmare. From exploring and trying to survive, you're always on the edge of your seat, worrying just how you're going to get killed this day, and how far can you push along the so far intriguing story. It's the first early access game that I can truly reccommend, and it is totally worth buying today.
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64 of 85 people (75%) found this review helpful
2.5 hrs on record
Posted: July 26
Early Access Review
Oh hey, another horror game, Pssht. I'll be fine, Outlast was pansy.

Diary One:Killed some dogs, Ate some mushrooms, did drugs. Was a good day.

Diary Two, Day Two. Well, Those were ... slightly scary. But thats it ain't it?

Diary Three, Day 3. PANTS ENTIRELY RUINED WITH POO, DO NOT WANT GO OUTSIDE. SCARY, CREATURE SCARY, PLZ NERF!

Diary Four. Day 7 ._. Why won't it end? I thought i was safe in the day, i was wrong. Pig heads, chickens, Horrible musicans!

All in all, Heavily reccomended, I am impressed :D
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