Darkest Dungeon: The Crimson Court expansion released

Splendidly cruel dungeon crawler Darkest Dungeon [official site] has launched its first expansion, The Crimson Court. The expansion’s focus is the eponymous aristocratic vampires, though Darkest Dungeon handles this idea in a different way than the usual bloodsucking toffs. This lot have become mosquitofolks with proboscis-like noses and, as the curse takes hold, mandibles, blood-bloated bellies and worse mutations. They look awful. I am excited to meet and murder them. Also in the expansion are new areas, weapons, items, and a hero class, the Flagellant. See in the launch trailer:

Ooh that Ancestor hasn’t half caused some trouble in his lust for forbidden knowledge!

The Crimson Court bring all sorts of new enemy classes living in their own dungeon district, The Courtyard. We get to murder them, sure, but we might also fancy a spot of bloodthirst ourselves. The Crimson Court can afflict members with the Crimson Curse, and I suspect a little bloodlust can be handy. Up until the new wandering boss, The Fanatic, arrives to purge parties suffering from the Curse. He’s a real murdermonk. Oh god, does he try to burn party members at the stake?

One friendlier zealot is the Flagellant, the new hero class. He’s real into blood but it’s more his own he likes seeing, swinging flails, hooks, spikes, and other things to make his own life unhappy. They’re probably bad for enemies too.

Also new! Building town ‘Districts’ offering passive bonuses, new trinkets with set bonuses, new weapons, and so on and so forth.

Darkest Dungeon: The Crimson Curse is out now for £6.99/$9.99 on Steam. It’s coming to GOG and the rest too, though doesn’t seem to be out there yet. An update with balance tweaks aplenty is out today too.

Oh, a reminder for folks who might not have played Darkest Dungeon in yonks: it did recently add Radiant mode, which makes the game shorter but not much easier. If the grind ground you down, you might dig that.


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    Drib says:

    Darkest Dungeon remains one of those games I would really like to enjoy, but end up just being violently frustrated by everything coming down to RNG.

    • cardigait says:

      exactly my experience

    • Nelyeth says:

      I used to agree, until I found you could reduce the risk by A LOT by min-maxing your team comp. Which is a shame, because I like dicking around with cool-looking characters (there are never enough graverobbers and lepers), without really paying attention to the synergies, but hey, my sanity goes first.

      That means bringing one (heck, two) crusaders in the ruins, but only there. That means abusing the helion+plague doctor combo. That means healing stress every time you can. In short, you have to exploit every little advantage you get to either kill things before they can even move, or to heal so much that they’ll die of old age without you ever being worried about a crit chain.

      Now, I don’t know whether I enjoy Darkest Dungeon more now that I’m slowly beating the game, or if I want to go back to a time where I could bring four graverobbers and bunny hop until I die and ragequit.

      The narrator voice-over keeps bringing me back though.

    • Xerophyte says:

      I’d say that both is and isn’t true. If you know how Darkest Dungeon works then you can succeed at a good 95%+ of all dungeon runs. The randomness can be mitigated with sufficient preparation and good risk management, much like FTL and similar games.

      However, that “if you know” is a pretty big qualifier for a game as intentionally opaque as Darkest Dungeon. It’s not immediately obvious what a good party composition is and what skills are useful for a given area. The game won’t tell you what consumables to bring to a given dungeon, when to use them or what the doodads can do as a result. You’ll have no idea what composition will be good against a specific boss without trying to fight said boss. To get to that 95%+ success rate you first need to learn through lengthy and repeated failure to succeed.

      If you’re okay with the result of a dungeon run being “those 40 minutes were a step backwards and a loss of valuable resources, but at least I learned more about what the Swine King does and next time I’ll do better” then Darkest Dungeon might be a good game for you. If that sounds like getting punched in the face for pennies, not so much.

      Oh, and also the mid-late game gets pretty damned grindy, which is where I bounced off.

    • Fnord73 says:

      Agreed. Tried three times. It just doesnt open up any new things for so long.

    • Lobotomist says:

      I had Darkest Dungeon art as my wallpaper 2 years before it was released. I really wanted this kind of game.

      But when it came out i found myself completely unable to enjoy it.

      The RNG combined with accumulating stress gameplay – it just feel like uphill battle all the time. I guess that was the point. But i found it no fun at all

      • Vilos Cohaagen says:

        I completely agree. Wanted to love it, but couldn’t. Such a shame – so pretty, such great music but the grind and several other design choices make it just no fun at all. :(

  2. Metalfish says:

    The best thing about this game is how it reminds myself that overconfidence is a slow and insidious killer….

  3. Michael Fogg says:

    Each time I see a mention of this game i think how great it would be to have this artstyle and overall aesthetic in a game that’s more like a remake of Temple of Elemental Evil, instead of this Jrpg-ish semi-automated side-scroller.

    • 1Derby says:

      This. If the folks at Paizo (Pathfiner) or WoTC (D&D) built a game around this (or the Xcom2 model) I would be a very happy man.

  4. NetharSpinos says:

    Does a new game have to be started to take advantage of the dlc, or can they be intergrated into current games?

    • Nelyeth says:

      I believe you can activate them on a current save, just beside the “delete save”. Cannot confirm though, since I deleted my save to make another one.

  5. Expose Gaming1 says:

    My God, I love this game, I never finished it because I get mad at the rngs. I think I might give it a go with this DLC.

  6. Barts says:

    I love Darkest Dungeon. I think most of people who disliked the game, simply didn’t get it. It is, after all, a specific beast: RNG can screw player over, snowball effect causes dramatic change of situation, you cannot attach yourself to either heroes or outcome and so on and so forth.

    I bought it on GOG and now on Steam plus all DLC (Ancestor Edition). I wrote about it in a couple of places. I will buy extras: artbook and diorama once they are available. As I said, I love the Darkest Dungeon.

  7. Norbert says:

    This game is insane and I love it. I started a new campaign last night and tonight it will be my first adventure in the courtyard. Can’t wait!