Darkest Dungeon is a role-playing game from Red Hook Studios, an indie game developer from Vancouver, Canada. The game was successfully funded with a Kickstarter campaign in 2013, made available on Steam Early Access in 2015 and fully released in the beginning of 2016. Darkest Dungeon is in many ways a spiritual successor of old RPGs like Eye of the Beholder, Ultima Underworld and so on.
The story of the game revolves around a gothic mansion which underground dungeons are full with many monsters and evil creatures. The player must gather a party of four heroes (picked from fifteen classes) and explore them, gathering loot and different items in the process. Even though this is the basic premise of many other RPGs, what separates DD from them is its core element – the Affliction system.
Every hero can be affected in many ways during the different encounters in the dungeons including adventuring without food or light, death of other heroes (which are permanent) and fights against monsters. This all can result in different afflictions which can be cleared only by visiting a different building in the local town called Hamlet. On the other hand there are the virtues, a positive kind of afflictions that can make heroes heal themselves, buff other party members, etc.
Visually Darkest Dungeon is a side scrolling game in which the party of four heroes goes from room to room in each dungeon, trying to survive until the end of it. It's a gloom and dark RPGfilled with horrors and abominations. When a fight occur the heroes take turns using different skills to fight their enemies. The art of the game is one of it's biggest selling point showing how a bloody dark world should really look like. The combat is also represented amazingly, every affliction or virtue, every skill even the simple looting of a chest can leave you breathless and without words. Visually the heroes are also not what someone could expect from an RPG, they all look like they've been through a lot, rugged and scarred.
Darkest Dungeon is really a magnificent game, bringing back the feel from the role-playing games of old where danger is at every corner and the world is full of darkness and horrors. At the moment the game is available only on PC (GOG/Steam) with PS4, PS Vita and Linux versions expected later this year.