Darkwood is a unforgiving game about survival, exploration and fear set in mysterious woods somewhere in the territory of the Soviet Bloc. 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 (408 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 may or may not change significantly over the course of development. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you may want to wait until 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.”

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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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 (4)

August 13

Plans for Alpha 2

Dear mortals,

We’ve been very busy after Darkwood’s launch, and released a few critical updates and hotfixes for most of the problems you’ve been having. We’ve also rested a bit after the pre-launch crunch time, watched a ton of Darkwood letsplays, hanged out in loads of streams, and read a lot of the suggestions you have been posting on the forums. We’re extremely excited about the reception of the alpha, but that’s a story for a different time.

The important thing is, we can now begin working on the first major update for Darkwood. There have been many reports about optimization - sometimes you can run the game on old and feeble laptops without a problem, while other times beefy rigs struggle with Darkwood. To fix this, we need to rework some of the behind-the-scenes stuff, which will take some time. This is a big change, so the sooner we do it, the better, and we’ve decided that it is a priority for the next update.

Optimization is of course not the only thing coming in Alpha 2. You can expect a little bit more of everything, and hopefully a fix for the issues some of the Mac users have been experiencing. I’m afraid the exact things we are planning will remain a secret. The Acid Wizards see your suggestions and what you would like to see improved in the game, so keep them coming! <3

When is the update coming out? We don’t know. We work *a lot* better if we’re not stressing out about a deadline, but it’s safe to assume that you can expect for us to work on it for AT LEAST a month. Don’t worry, we haven’t run off with the money, and we’re not spending 100% of our time playing Dark Souls.

There’s a lot to do before we’re satisfied with Darkwood, and we’re fully commited to making this the best experience possible!

The Acid Wizards

82 comments Read more

August 5

Alpha 1.3 hotfix 2

It's been 10 days now after the launch, and here we are with the third minor update with a ton of fixes, and some balance changes to help players struggling with the first days in the game. Please note that this does NOT mean we are "dumbing" down Darkwood. It will remain very challenging, but as of now the difficulty curve is way too steep and needs a lot of work, which will also be addressed in future updates.

Changes:
- You can now dismantle barricades which you have created, reclaiming some of the materials used.
- Weapons are more durable now.
- The plank with nails has a new default attack.
- Time passes a little slower.
- Days are longer.
- It's brighter during the day.
- The player moves a little faster, and has a lower movement speed penalty when aiming weapons. Also, no speed penalty when out of stamina.
- Enemies have less stamina, and are a bit less aggressive.
- There is a new visitor during the night.
- You can't brute force padlocks anymore (at least it's much harder).
- Throwing a item (like the molotov cocktail) for a second time requires you to press the RMB again, to help prevent unintentionally dropping it.
- More space for items in your hideout.
- You have some starting reputation with the traders.
- Red and gray potions can be crafted from the start (you don't have to buy the recipes). Their effect is visible instantly.

Bugs:
- NPC in the church sometimes gave the wrong code.
- Wolf reputation sometimes didn't sync.
- Some optimizations for stuttering in the forest.
- Fixed receiving reputation from selling a item when a trader's inventory is full without actually losing the item (and vice versa).
- Recipes are no longer duplicated.
- Fixed player freezing on some occasions.
- You can no longer learn the same recipe twice.
- Fixed infinite item turn in for NPCs exploit.
- Rain was too loud.
- If a well was repaired in the middle of the night, it didn't have any water.
- Fixed huge FPS hit while in the pigsheds.
- Fixed ambient light not saving in some locations.
- You no longer lose your inventory at the end of chapter 1.
- Fixed black screen on end of chapter 1.
- Fixed notes in the journal sometimes leaving a page if you've found too much.
- Fixed beartrap duplicating exploit.
- Fixed incorrectly loaded doors and barricades.
- Fixed not being able to drop a dragged item by pressing LMB if accessed the journal or map.
- Dying outside of the normal world no longer freezes the time.
- Fixed some issues with the cursor.
- Fixed issue when sometimes you could not craft stuff even though you had the required ingredients.
- Item quality no longer changes when loading game.
- Chicken heads and the violin no longer serve as repair kits.

Update 06.08.2014:
Released a hotfix for some of the issues with the new patch:
- Hopefully final fix for black screen at the end of chapter 1.
- Fixed player freeze when harvesting mushrooms and moving at the same time.
- Fixed health / stamina upgrades resetting sometimes.
- Wolf dialogue no longer loops infinitely.
- Fixed endless flare burning upon loading game.

Update 08.08.2014:
Another hotfix:
- New cursor animation when aiming a melee weapon + info about it in the prologue.
- Night attacks no longer stop after day 5.
- Fixed infestation causing serious lag, especially when burning.
- Hopefully a fix for the filling generator freeze.
- Roads no longer disappear.

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

Current features

  • Prologue.
  • 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 game about survival, exploration and fear, set in mysterious woods somewhere in the territory of the Soviet Bloc. It is a top-down, free-roam, surreal horror experience with a randomized world, taking cues from classic games, where oftentimes you had to figure things out for yourself. By blending RPG, roguelike and adventure elements together with a challenging difficulty, Darkwood aims to please players craving for a deep and rewarding experience.

The fear of unknown is powerful – and the unknown will try to remain unseen, forcing you to watch your back. Your senses will be deceived, your sight fooled, your smell tricked 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

PC
Mac
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 9 people (100%) found this review helpful
15.6 hrs on record
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.
Posted: October 16
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
32.6 hrs on record
Early Access Review
This game is what makes life worth living. It is the essence of the soul. I pray to the Wizards of Acid every night before I go to sleep to thank them for blessing me with this beautiful work of art. It's mysterious, scary, has great art style and an excellent yet difficult combat system. You need this game. Darkwood is love... Darkwood is life.
Posted: October 17
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.4 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Nice 2D survival horror game, i can't wait full version now
This make me feel scary when it night fall :D
Posted: September 28
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
31.0 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Amazing game. The atmosphere fits perfectly and the game is challenging. Really looking forward to what the devs have planned next.
Posted: September 28
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
15.4 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Great game, very great, but need more chapters :(
Posted: September 28
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.2 hrs on record
Early Access Review
(Silent Hill + Stalker) x Hotline Miami = Darkwood
Posted: October 6
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.5 hrs on record
Early Access Review
quite scary and fun so far.
Posted: October 14
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
2.5 hrs on record
Early Access Review
You will love this game just after prolog. It is amazing and intriguing.
It's my opinion as developer and as player
Posted: October 1
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
2.2 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Darkwood is a suprisingly scary overhead view horror game. Currently theres still much more needed to be added to the game and some of it feels like you get more perks if you kill everyone but wolf man. Dont kill wolf man hes awesome. Its a good game but wait a bit before you buy it. Its taking but a minute to add more content.
Posted: October 3
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.0 hrs on record
Early Access Review
weres the update they promised.
Posted: October 10
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
12.6 hrs on record
Early Access Review
This game is great eventhough its top down it is still extremely scary and fun. The atmosphere at night when your huddled in a corner listening is great and I cant wait for future updates. 9/10
Posted: September 26
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.2 hrs on record
Early Access Review
first 15min in game, creepy and cant see ♥♥♥♥. got silent and mate randomly shouts noise i crap my self 10/10 mates a A holes
Posted: October 8
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
15.3 hrs on record
Early Access Review
thow very fun also very hard i've had the game since 1.2 and I just beat it like 2 days ago so if you are looking for a hard survival game here it is
Posted: October 11
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
36.5 hrs on record
Early Access Review
I can't. Too Stressed... running through the woods to grab a stupid lynx.... but i keep trying... and killing all these things just to shoot up their meat.

Ahhh, this game is so good.
Posted: October 13
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.7 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Darkwood brings horror game to a totally different level, or at least one that has not been around in quite some time.

Darkwood makes me panic, and stress, all in one sitting. The felling of knowing that something is lurking just outside your door and out of your sight, or something creeping past a boarded up window, and just barely being able to see it, leaves me nervous and covered in goosebumps. I think that Acid Wizard Studios really did something special here by bringing people into the light of top down horror games, through such a dark, and scary environment. The game is just crawling with atmosphere, and other things!

I totally suggest this to anyone into horror games! Great game overall! - 9/10
Posted: October 14
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
10.4 hrs on record
Early Access Review
There you are, alone, in your safe house with nothing but the darkness for company. Then all of a sudden, you hear a scream, and what's that? Your furniture is moving all by itself. It's ok though, you're safe, in your barricaded room and there's only another few minutes of night time left. Oh, wait, they're knocking on your door, you can see the barricade splinter...It's fine, daylight will save you. Argh, but here they come, relentlessly banging on your door and it's one hit away from being broken. Phew, daylight is here, but you have no wood left to barricade yourself in when night time comes again. You have no weapon so you need to go out into the woods to scavenge and prepare yourself, but you know they're lurking out there too.

Darkwood does this brilliantly, it builds up so much tension that even when nothing is going on, you're still on edge. Sure, there are a few bugs still in the game, but it's an early Alpha release, and the devs have acknowledged that a few things here and there need to be fixed.

Don't let the bugs take away from what is a stunning survival game, and a survival game that builds up the horror through it's atmosphere like no other that I've played recently. Reminiscent of the old Silent Hill games in the way that it builds tension, it builds you up and then knocks you down but it's not frustrating. You don't mind meeting your maker, even though you lose your precious mushrooms, because you learn a little each time you die.

The game looks beautiful, the lighting is glorious and really helps set the tone when you're out to discover new things. Your cone of vision can either help you out or destroy you if you're not vigilant enough, but it's something you get used to after a while.

The crafting system works nicely, and is clear and easy to use, but sometimes the amount that you can carry becomes a little bit of a problem, that said, it doesn't take away too much from the experience. If anything, the frustration is outweighed by the fear that you won't have enough to survive the night, making the game more tense.

The world is randomly generated on each play through so you will never get tired of exploring the same old places again and again.

The characters in the game thus far have enough depth to influence how you behave toward them, but enough mystery that you never really know what to expect from them the NPCs are great fun to come up against whether you're ready to fight them or not.

Darkwood is something that any survival horror fan should try out and if at first it seems a little slow, I'm sure that it will grow on you and eventually you will approach each night filled with terror and worry that you've missed something and they can get in your safe house while you're completely defenseless because you didn't have time to craft a new weapon before you had to lock yourself in.

If you're still unsure whether to get the game or not, then please check out my playthrough and see how I experienced the night terrors (and the day terrors for that matter) and then form your own opinions, and hopefully learn from my mistakes if you do decide to get the game!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tu_isSnkgGw&list=PLsbPERuyqhxzTT5boLH8lsNwG6W7NYllF&index=1
Posted: October 25
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
2.2 hrs on record
Early Access Review
ooooo
first : silent hill then : darksouls now: darkwood ...... what a game!!!!!! ty acid wizard
....atmospheric....
Posted: October 13
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
1.4 hrs on record
Early Access Review
A superb isometric horror survival game.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=df5Q4bRnDvM
This has all the elements you would expect from such a title. I'm not normally a massive fan of this genre, but I loved the atmosphere generated and the art style involved. I don't think a tutorial is required as you learn via references which you simply highlight, click, drag and examine. Most of it is common sense logic and the crafting system is superb, it will only highlight craft-able objects if you have the required materials and objects. Overall I'm really impressed with this title. - Highly Recommended!
Posted: October 7
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1 of 3 people (33%) found this review helpful
0.3 hrs on record
Early Access Review
new game>meet monster>dead>quit>go to bed
Posted: October 16
Was this review helpful? Yes No
0.6 hrs on record
Early Access Review
I love the theme; it inspirably leads me into the creepy atmosphere, which is really my favourite. Although I have some prob to play this below, I have to recommend this.

Here is my problem. I'm not sure that this is only my mac prob though, my macbook pro retina is unstably rolling its cooler, and in 50% of chances, the game is shuted down (just it stop the screen, and never come back normal) even before my death; I CAN'T play the game for fun with my mac. (Simply, start the game -> wait for map building for few 'minutes' -> get out the shelter -> find another house or encounter some enemy -> died or shut down -> press my bloody booting button to force-shut down my mac.)

I HOPE this is only cuz of my old retina macbook pro, and the next version of this game is much stable on mac as well.
Posted: October 25
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