The sky is falling above Darkest Dungeon’s ill-fated village, Hamlet. As we know from Asterix, this is a very bad thing and you should be rather scared. A comet has come crashing down and landed in the outskirts, bringing with it a strange light and, of course, madness. It can only mean one thing: it’s time for some new DLC. Some new DLC with a not very reassuring name, specifically. The Color of Madness is due out next spring.
Like its predecessor, The Crimson Court, The Color of Madness opens up a new area, where the aforementioned comet has struck. It landed on Miller’s farm, and nobody has heard a word from its residents in a fortnight. Obviously this is something you should march towards, and not avoid entirely out of fear of death or insanity.
The ‘husks’ of Miller and his employees wander the area, spreading the light of the comet. They’re a new enemy type, and while Red Hook is keeping schtum about what makes them different from the rest of the monsters inhabiting Darkest Dungeon’s crypts and caverns, I suspect that the corrupting light will come with a mechanical twist like Crimson Court’s vampiric curse.
The crimson curse is a disease that’s hard to cure and which drives its victims mad with a thirst for blood, forcing players to manage them by feeding them blood and attempting to stop the plague from spreading to other adventurers. It took a bit of time for Red Hook to find a good balance, as it started out being nearly impossible to manage thanks to the dearth of blood loot drops and the rather severe debuffs.
A new quest type is also going to be introduced when The Color of Madness launches next year. It sounds an awful lot like a horde or survival mode, with adventurers wading through endless waves of enemies on their way to the comet. “Survive as long as you can stomach, and compare your highest kill count with friends and rivals alike,” say Red Hook.
I’m not sure what to make of this. Darkest Dungeon is all about knowing when to run away, conserving sanity and protecting your adventurers, if you can. And every enemy encounter is a surprise that could be your last. A horde mode sounds like the antithesis of that. Since this is Darkest Dungeon, however, I’m hoping for a twist that will make this more than just slaughtering foe after foe.
Hopefully we’ll find out more in the new year, which is when Red Hook will also spill the beans on pricing.