Dark Souls™ - The Board Game

Created by Steamforged Games Ltd

Dark Souls™ - The Board Game is a strategically challenging, deeply immersive combat exploration game for 1-4 players.

Latest Updates from Our Project:

IT/ES Card Corrections, Armour Sets & Update Date
over 1 year ago – Thu, Nov 16, 2017 at 10:56:33 PM

Hi all,

Italian and Spanish backers should be starting to receive the corrected cards by next week. 

They have been confirmed to have landed at the manufacturers and they are through customs. All information has been sent to the manufacturer to send these cards directly out from their warehouse to backers.

Obviously, depending on location their arrival time may vary as stated below:

  • Packing of decks for shipment: One week for all - starts between November 3rd and November 15th (Complete)
  • New cards arrive in backer's hands: starting November 18th, depending on the mail service and the location of the backer (Rome and Madrid are probably quicker than Elba and Gomera) and should be done by early December. (ongoing)
Re-sculpted Armour sets with weapons
Re-sculpted Armour sets with weapons


The re-worked armour sets are now virtually all through approval - The Adventurer Set needed the shield spinning around so we are just awaiting feedback that our alteration on this was correct (we expect to hear about this tomorrow).  

These files will then be shared with China and the final estimates can be put in place.  

Our large update will be released on Tuesday 21st all being well now we have pretty much all the information we need. 

With our SteamCON event happening from tomorrow until Sunday we have quite a skeleton staff until Tuesday and we want to ensure that our full customer support team is in place to answer any questions you may have after the update goes live.

Praise the Sun! \[T]/

Update/Corrected Cards - IT/ES Timeline Update
over 1 year ago – Tue, Nov 07, 2017 at 10:55:13 PM

Hi unkindled, 

Since getting back from SPIEL we wanted to update our IT/ES backers with the timeline stages to let you know everything is on-track (as of this update) with the re-print:

  • Done by October 23rd - small delay due to Golden Week in China (complete)
  • (2nd-7th October) Airfreight to Germany: 1 week - October 30th (complete) 
  • Customs and transport to Ludofact Germany: between 2 and 14 days - this part is impossible to predict - done between November 2nd and November 14th (in progress)
  • Packing of decks for shipment: One week for all - starts between November 3rd and November 15th 
  • New cards arrive in backer's hands: starting November 18th, depending on the mail service and the location of the backer (Rome and Madrid are probably quicker than Elba and Gomera) and should be done by early December. 

Wave 2 Update - Final Gathering Data Outstanding

We know most people are waiting for the wave 2 update - we have almost everything we need now but we are still waiting on the following before we can put the update out:

  • 3 Outstanding Armour Set Approvals (3rd revision approval)
  • Re-Moulding schedule/length for new Armour Sets
  • Possibility to offer additional dice sets for backers to purchase (due to the huge number of requests) and having them delivered alongside their pledge(s).

We expect to have these 3 pieces of information within the next week (the armour set revisions were extremely simple at this pass) and then we should be able to provide as accurate an estimate as we can for delivery.

Happy Halloween - Developer Blog, Classic Dungeon Crawl
over 1 year ago – Wed, Nov 01, 2017 at 12:08:32 AM

Hi Unkindled,

We met with our manufacturing partners at SPIEL to lock down some of the final parts of the big Wave 2 timeline update. We nearly have all we need to do our full update - thank you, everyone, again for your patience while we gather the most accurate estimate and realistic timelines we can for Wave 2. The armour sets are going through the second round of approval right now, but we can show you the re-modeled Havel Set as an early preview.

Havel Armour Set with Dragon Tooth...
Havel Armour Set with Dragon Tooth...

Developer Blog

A recurring theme in the Kickstarter comments as well as on our Dark Souls™: The Board Game forums is that many of you are coming up with creative alternate rules to enhance your group’s Dark Souls™ gaming experience. Every group is different, so it makes sense to tweak the core game rules to suit their specific needs. Some groups don’t have as much time as others. Others prefer greater control over character progression. And some groups want the game to be more difficult while others want it to be easier! 

To avoid confusion, we chose not to weigh down the core rulebook for Dark Souls™: The Board Game with pages upon pages of potential options and house rules, but we certainly want to encourage you to play in the way that will allow your gaming group to gain the most enjoyment from the game! 

Today, we’re going to present the rules for the Classic Dungeon Crawl variant for playing Dark Souls™: The Board Game. Within the game development, we often talk about ‘turning the dial’ for complexity or power or some other element of a game. In this particular case, we’ll be turning the dial for ‘Dark Souls-i-ness’ down a bit, but we’ll be also be turning the dial for ‘Game Length’ down substantially. If your group wants a faster way to play, then the Classic Dungeon Crawl might be for you.

Alternative Play Rules.
Alternative Play Rules.

The Classic Dungeon Crawl variant doesn’t change many game rules, but it changes the experience of playing Dark Souls™: The Board Game quite a bit! The core element of gameplay in this variant is that the players have just one chance to defeat the encounters that lie before them. 

• Remove all references to the Spark dial 

• If a character dies, the players immediately lose the game 

• Characters’ Estus Flask tokens and Heroic Action tokens only refresh after they defeat a boss 

• Each player gains bonus souls for each encounter they defeat (including boss encounters) – award +9 souls per encounter for solo play, +7 per encounter for two players, +5 per encounter for three players, or +3 per encounter for four players 

Rather than repeating the same encounters each time the party uses a bonfire spark, in the Classic Dungeon Crawl variant, players will get just one shot at each encounter, but their character progression in terms of stats and equipment is also vastly accelerated compared to a standard playthrough. 

It’s also very easy to increase or decrease the difficulty of this variant. 

• For easy mode, change the bonus souls to +15 for solo, +10 for two players, +7 for three players, and +5 for four players 

• For challenge mode, change the bonus souls to +6 for solo, +4 for two players, +3 for three players, and +2 for four players 

• And if you’d like to brave a nearly impossible mode, feel free to skip the bonus souls altogether 

Which Boss will you Bash?
Which Boss will you Bash?

A fun and challenging variant of this variant is the Boss Bash. In addition to the previous changes to the core rules, replace all of the encounters after the mini boss (that lead up to your selected main boss) with a mini boss or main boss you haven’t faced yet. 

Note that the intricacies of boss encounters turn the dial for game length back up a bit, but defeating this gauntlet can make for a truly memorable Dark Souls™: The Board Game game night! 

During the next development update, we’ll take a look at another one of the mega boss expansions, but we’ll return to looking at variant game modes in the future. 

Praise the Sun! \[T]/

Developer Blog - Crystal Lizards!
over 1 year ago – Wed, Oct 25, 2017 at 07:50:33 PM

Hi unkindled,

A few of you noticed the game rules for a unique Dark Souls™ enemy hidden within the pages of the Print & Play for the Smelter Demon. We decided to take a little time today to fill you in on the development of the Crystal Lizards that can be found in the Iron Keep expansion. If you haven’t seen the Print & Play yet, make sure you take a look at the previews of some of our upcoming Dark Souls™: The Board Game content.  
Sooooo cute!
Sooooo cute!


At the start of the development process, the Crystal Lizards were a fairly standard enemy. They used the standard spawning rules, and players could not complete the encounter without dispatching these scuttling annoyances along with the other enemies in the encounter. There was one problem, though. Since Crystal Lizards pose no threat to the players, they were easily ignored and then picked off at the party’s leisure once the encounter was effectively over.  

Our next step in the process was to assess what sort of enemy-like quality we could add to the little buggers. Since chasing after Crystal Lizards for their precious upgrade materials could lure players into traps, falls, or other peril, we next tested out the Crystal Lizards with various abilities that would inflict damage or conditions on nearby characters. This version functioned adequately to make them a legitimate board game enemy, but it had a different problem. It simply didn’t feel as true to the source material. Crystal Lizards most defining characteristic isn’t some aura of damage – it’s running away!  

Crystal Lizard Data Card.
Crystal Lizard Data Card.

Once we identified that core essence of the Crystal Lizards, we gave them the ability you can see on their data card above. They act in the board game more similarly to how they act in the video game series, constantly moving away from characters until they are hunted down or are able to escape.  

The one final piece of the puzzle was taking them off of the spawn nodes so they wouldn’t use up a potential space for a more formidable enemy that could present some danger to the party. Since a Crystal Lizard is more akin to a running treasure chest than a typical enemy, we moved the Crystal Lizards’ starting position onto terrain nodes instead.  

Encounter Card.
Encounter Card.

The Iron Depths encounter is a great example of how Crystal Lizards can shake up an encounter. You could ignore them and focus on the Alonne Knights that pose the actual threat to your party, but you could also choose to brave traps and use valuable activations and stamina to try to take down the Crystal Lizards before the encounter ends.  

Those that do will be rewarded with a…  


Just like Titanite Shard cards, Titanite Scales are weapon upgrades that enhance a weapon’s damage output. Even a lowly Thrall Axe or Reinforced Club can dish out some real damage with a bit of Titanite backup. Then again, should you upgrade the weapons you have now or wait until you find something better? Hopefully, you’ll find some more Crystal Lizards around the next corner, and you won’t have to choose at all!

Since we’ve already covered all of the big game mechanics topics like Invaders, we’ll be taking a look at some of the more niche topics like Crystal Lizards. We also haven’t forgotten about mega bosses! We want to spread out the mega boss updates rather than doing them all at once, but there are certainly more mega boss updates to come.

• Which mega boss is your top priority?

• What other topics would you like to hear about?  

• What other questions do you have for the Dark Souls development team?  

Let us know! And as always…  

Praise the Sun! \[T]/

Invaders Update - Development Blog
over 1 year ago – Tue, Oct 17, 2017 at 12:59:12 AM

Welcome Back Unkindled,

In today’s update, we’ll be looking at red phantoms, the INVADERS from Dark Souls™ The Board Game. If you missed the summons update, we recommend that you check out the white phantoms first as the invaders share certain design elements with their less nefarious kin.

As with summons, we allowed the game mechanics of the Dark Souls™ series to drive the way we implemented invaders in the board game. We knew we wanted to tie these malicious spirits to the embers players gain from the treasure deck. While embers provide some degree of protection, they also attract powerful foes.

If the players choose to use invaders, each time a member of the party gains an ember, they will randomly place an invader token in one unexplored encounter and place safe tokens in the other unexplored encounters. As with summons, half of the invaders are used prior to defeating the mini boss, and the other have are used after, allowing invaders to pose a challenging-but-not-overwhelming threat in both the early game and the late game.

Examples of the Invader Tokens. From Left to Right. Top of all tokens, blank token face, Maldron token face.
Examples of the Invader Tokens. From Left to Right. Top of all tokens, blank token face, Maldron token face.

When the party enters an encounter, the players will flip the token to see if a red phantom has invaded. If so, the invader will be added to the existing encounter.

This certainly increases the challenge posed by the encounter, but it also gives the party an opportunity to claim the invader’s unique treasure card as well as three additional souls for vanquishing the invader.

Invaders function very similarly to bosses. They don’t have attack arcs or weak arcs, but they have behaviour decks, heat up points, and special abilities like the game’s bosses.

As with bosses, each invader poses its own unique threat. Some have high block and resist values or high starting health. Others deal more damage, have magical attacks, or inflict conditions. Players will have to watch an invader’s behaviours carefully just as they do with a boss. Once they know the sort of threat the invader poses, they can more effectively dispatch them.

Maldron's Behaviour Cards.
Maldron's Behaviour Cards.

One of the common themes during the design and development process for Dark Souls™ The Board Game was staying true to the game series. This principle definitely applied to our work on invaders. From their move sets to their treasure cards, we kept the focus on bringing these characters to life on the tabletop.

That also applies to the invaders’ special abilities, and if you haven’t already heard… Maldron is a jerk.

Maldron's Data Card.
Maldron's Data Card.

Yup, as soon as you start getting somewhere, Maldron will run away and heal. If you do finish off this devious invader, however, you’ll be rewarded with his Royal Swordsman Armour as well as the bonus souls we mentioned earlier.

• So which invader are you most eager to try to take down?
• Which ones do you think fall into the mini boss category versus the main boss category?
• What custom rules or campaigns are you interested in trying out with invaders?

Let us know in the comments, and…

Praise the Sun! \[Y]/