You take the scares, oppressive atmosphere, and keen resource management of Resident Evil. Mix all that with Slay the Spire’s in-depth card and deck systems, and the wonderfully crunchy turn-based combat of Darkest Dungeon. While you’re at it, throw in some terrifying Eldritch-style body horror and the unnerving, lo-fi visuals of indie hits like Lone Survivor and Signalis. Congratulations. You’ve just cooked up Draft of Darkness, a petrifying roguelike deckbuilder and card game that’s about to hit full launch on Steam. And I hope you’re happy, because the bizarre flesh monsters that prowl Draft of Darkness’s world are coming to kill us all.
In a bleak post-apocalyptic city, you begin Draft of Darkness by creating your survivor and selecting a small number of starting cards. Across sprawling, procedurally generated maps, you need to find new party members, collect additional cards, and use turn-based combat to defeat warped, anomalous, John Carpenter’s The Thing-style flesh creatures.
It looks fantastic, like the artwork from a hundred frantic noise-rock records came to life and made a VHS horror movie on the set of Rockstar’s Manhunt. Take a look below.
But there’s a twist. Your cards are linked to specific weapons, and if your weapons run out of ammo, those cards, naturally, become unusable. This is where the survival horror game element comes in, as not only do you need to manage and customize your deck, but scrounge for bullets and carefully choose when to fight and when to flee.
Each decision you make affects Draft of Darkness’s story and when you die – which is almost inevitable – not only will your decisions affect your progress next go around, but you will receive a new set of booster packs, so you can use better or different starting cards.
The good news is that Draft of Darkness is getting a full Steam launch on Wednesday, August 23. The better news is that it’s already available in early access, so you can jump into it right here.