A downloadable game

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The People's Revolution has overthrown the nobles of the realm and seized the Imperial capital of Kynburgh. The Emperor Titan Kyne died cursing the land and all who deposed him. Now the only coin that is left lies buried with the undead Lords who forged the Empire. Delve into the dungeon, twice-kill the dead Lords, and secure the People's Revolution!


Using a single-player stream-lined variation of John Harper's Blades in the Dark rules, players can quickly generate characters with unique skills and items. As you delve you use your creativity and limited resources to overcome 100's of encounters, randomly generated from 9 unique dungeon locations. When your pack is full of broken crowns and Imperial coins you return above ground to the Imperial capital for downtime where your character can recover and resupply for their next delve.

If you succumb to your wounds you die!

If you become corrupted by diabolism and the wealth of the dungeon you die!

If your last torch burns out in the middle of the pitch black dungeon you die!

The only way to live is to kill the ghoulish nobility in their crypts, steal back their wealth, and survive to delve again. For the realm! For the people! For the Revolution!

  • Players: 1
  • Playtime: 30 minutes per session
  • Requirements: 6 six-sided dice, a deck of playing cards (jokers included) and something to write with. A character sheet and reference sheets are included with the game.


Written & designed by Michael Elliott

Original cover images by Linus SandvideKarson on Unsplash

Interior art by Open Clipart Vectors on Pixabay and Public Domain Vectors

Ink Splashes and Spatters by Peach Garden Games & Aaron King

Based on Blades in the Dark, a product of One Seven Design, developed and authored by John Harper, and licensed for use under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.

Music For Killing Dead Lords


Buy Now$15.00 USD or more

In order to download this game you must purchase it at or above the minimum price of $15 USD. You will get access to the following files:

A Torch in the Dark v 1.3.pdf 8 MB
A Torch in the Dark - Character Sheet.pdf 999 kB
A Torch in the Dark - Dungeon Guide.pdf 3 MB
A Torch in the Dark - Rules Reference.pdf 33 kB

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Community Copies

Each purchase of this game creates a community copy. These copies of A Torch in the Dark are for people experiencing financial hardships and cannot afford the game. If you would like to check out A Torch in the Dark and lack the funds to do so, these copies are for you. Please take one.

Development log


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Picked this up as part of the Found in the Dark bundle, and have been really enjoying it. I was very pleasantly surprised at how well this game is able to reproduce all of the juicy tension of dungeon crawling in a solo gm-less game. 



French roleplayer, completely caught up in reading the book, the author manages to use the FITD system in a simple and elegant way by putting it at the service of an efficient and inspiring solo engine. The universe described in a few words opens up many possibilities, can't wait to get out my cards and dice to test! I think I'll spend a summer in the dark ...

Thank you very much! Good luck in the dungeons!


Hi I'm an italian roleplayer. I've played your game on my rpg channel gdrunplugged.it

It's so cool! would you be interested in an Italian adaptation? How can I contact you?

Hi! Thank so much for the video, glad you're enjoying it. You can contact me at michael(at)notwriting(dot)net


I've just started a run of this and it's been a lot of fun. Finally got through the goal of the first crypt and ready to keep on going! I'm only uncertain about one thing so far: When you're required to make multiple risk rolls for one event, are you able to use the same skills for each risk roll? Like, if I roll 3d6 with 1 skill and 2 items, will I be able to use those same skills/items for the next risk roll or do I have to chose others?


Yes, you may use the same skills and items multiple times, assuming one of the items wasn't expended or lost in your last risk roll.


Awesome, glad to know I was reading it right. Thanks so much! 


I first bought this game when you posted it on the Waypoint Radio discord a while ago and just saw that you updated it. I gave it a quick skim and WOW, what an update! The character creation is completely revamped and feels way better, and same for changing dungeon generation mechanics from tedious dice rolling to flipping cards. Goals and the Dungeon Guide add more structure to the game, which is really helpful for some players (like me).

I've only given a proper read to the first chapter so far, but I'm super excited to give this another go!


Thank you so much! Please let me know how things go if you delve in the crypts beneath Kynburgh!


Loving the game! There's a few spelling mistakes, and demon encounters could use a clear explanation outside of the gameplay example, but it's a fun little solo gaming experience.


This looks really cool! Any gameplay examples we can check out?

(1 edit) (+1)

Not that I know of, but if I find something I'll be sure to post about it.