It’s not too common for smaller projects to tuck into the top spots for most-played games on Steam. However, an indie title is currently attracting more players than many big brands like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and Elden Ring. Since the start of Next Fest, you’ve been able to download a demo of Dark and Darker. Exactly this game completely fascinates many gamers. Back in December, the Ironmace developers put a playable alpha online that excited many interested parties.
The success of the current playtest is no coincidence. The gloomy PvPvE dungeon crawler peaked at over 100,000 simultaneous players on the first day. Now one could quickly assume a one-off success, but the hype continues. The number of players is still very high with more than 60,000 active players. Some streamers on YouTube and Twitch have already made their rounds in the dark catacombs, which of course gives the title even more reach.
What is Dark and Darker anyway?
The success of the game can be explained relatively easily, because Dark and Darker combines popular mechanics: On the one hand, we have a dark medieval fantasy environment in which we choose wizards, barbarians and clerics as playable characters. Dark and Darker plays like a mixture of battle royale and extraction mode including PvP and PvE battles and is reminiscent of titles like Escape from Tarkov.
In addition, there is a time limit in the form of a decreasing zone like in Call of Duty: Warzone or PUBG. This mix is apparently just right for many fans of the different genres. Especially since Dark and Darker, as befits an extraction game, has a reward system for successful escapes.
The Next Fest on Steam will run until February 13th, during which time the demo of the indie title can also be played. Three different maps will be available by then: One map purely for solo players and two others in which you fight for loot and survival in threes.
After the demo ends, the development studio wants to respond to community feedback and work on the issues. The release of the full version is currently planned for the 3rd quarter of 2023. That means we can expect the finished game to be released between July and September.
We are also busy in the dark vaults and will report in detail about our experiences in the coming days. The demo is available for free download on Steam until February 13th. So if you want to get an impression of the indie title that is so popular at the moment, you should do so in no time at all.
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