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In the Dark

Suggested Price $2.00

What is this?

In the Dark is a streamlined, multi-setting roleplaying game, based on the Forged in the Dark system. It allows you to play as a team of highly-skilled individuals operating on the fringes of law & society. You could be master thieves pulling casino heists, pirates raiding along the Spanish Main, or interplanetary bounty hunters roving the galaxy.

Who is this for?

Firstly, In the Dark is for gaming groups who like Blades in the Dark but want to play in a different setting. Secondly, it's for roleplayers who prefer rules-light, improvisational play. And thirdly, it's for players who want a simple entry point into Forged in the Dark style RPGs.

What does the game include?

The base game includes:

  • A 2-page rules summary & gamemaster mini-guide
  • 9 player character playbooks covering a range of character roles (Ace, Burglar, Engineer, Face, Hunter, Mastermind, Medic, Muscle, & Mystic)
  • GM playbook for notes & reference
  • Blank playbook & playset sheets to make your own roles & settings

There are also a number of themed playsets, with the possibility of more in the future.

How is this game different from Blades in the Dark?

In the Dark takes the core gameplay of Blades in the Dark and strips away its more complicated procedures. Gameplay is snappier & more improvisational, like a Powered by the Apocalypse Game.

  • Downtime & score procedures have been simplified so gameplay flows freely in & out of jobs.
  • Individual & crew playbooks have been condensed onto a single sheet.
  • Position & effect have been eliminated. Difficulty is determined solely by adding & subtracting dice from a pool.
  • Stats, group actions, gear & load, and harm & healing have all been simplified.
  • Playbook roles have been adjusted to fit a broad range of ensemble stories. 
  • Playsets have been added, allowing your group to play in a wide variety of settings.

Overall, the game is mechanically easier to play, but relies more on player collaboration & inventiveness. Think Monster of the Week or Lasers & Feelings.

Where did this come from?

In the Dark originated as a hack of Scum & Villainy. The goal was to make the game more friendly & engaging for live-streamed actual-play. Versions of it have been played on ManaPot Studios Flights of Fandom streams, in settings ranging from Star Wars to Dishonered to Batman.

What's the release status of the game?

In the Dark is being released as a public beta. It's been playtested with a small group on ManaPot Studios Flights of Fandom, and is ready for public feedback. Any suggestions for changes or reports on play experiences are welcome!

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Copper seller
Rule System(s)
File Size:
0.9 MB
Original electronic
Scanned image
These products were created by scanning an original printed edition. Most older books are in scanned image format because original digital layout files never existed or were no longer available from the publisher.

For PDF download editions, each page has been run through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to attempt to decipher the printed text. The result of this OCR process is placed invisibly behind the picture of each scanned page, to allow for text searching. However, any text in a given book set on a graphical background or in handwritten fonts would most likely not be picked up by the OCR software, and is therefore not searchable. Also, a few larger books may be resampled to fit into the system, and may not have this searchable text background.

For printed books, we have performed high-resolution scans of an original hardcopy of the book. We essentially digitally re-master the book. Unfortunately, the resulting quality of these books is not as high. It's the problem of making a copy of a copy. The text is fine for reading, but illustration work starts to run dark, pixellating and/or losing shades of grey. Moiré patterns may develop in photos. We mark clearly which print titles come from scanned image books so that you can make an informed purchase decision about the quality of what you will receive.
Original electronic format
These ebooks were created from the original electronic layout files, and therefore are fully text searchable. Also, their file size tends to be smaller than scanned image books. Most newer books are in the original electronic format. Both download and print editions of such books should be high quality.
File Last Updated:
September 24, 2021
This title was added to our catalog on September 24, 2021.
David Brunell-Brutman
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