Hardcore first-person dungeon game Dark and Darker is finally out for players to enjoy in Early Access, but you won’t be able to find it on Steam. Developer Ironmace surprised players in its Discord server today by revealing that the project is out now. However, due to ongoing legal troubles with South Korean game company Nexon, those who want to play will have to head to the official Dark and Darker website and download the project through the studio’s Blacksmith launcher. Alternatively, players can head to Chaf Games and download it there. The studio says that it is actively working to resolve issues as players flood into the game they have waited so long for.
“We want to be very upfront and let users know that there will be many growing pains during the Early Access phase,” Ironmace wrote to Dark and Darker fans on Discord. “Many key features are still missing and will be added in the upcoming months. We’ll be experimenting with the leaderboard system, and we’ll do our best to be transparent about the ranking schedules so players don’t get too stressed out. Just like our game, our launcher was built from the ground up, and they are both still a work in progress.”
Speaking with PC Gamer, Ironmace says it hopes to make Dark and Darker Early Access available to download via Steam in the future but cannot provide a timeline for that release yet. It was previously available on Valve’s PC storefront before Nexon issued a cease and desist letter and DMCA takedown in March, resulting in its removal. Nexon alleges that Ironmace stole game assets and development staff to create Dark and Darker. Ironmace called these claims “distorted” at the time, denying them once again in its message to PC Gamer today.
Per the Dark and Darker website, players have two purchase options: a Standard Edition and Founder’s Edition. The former nets access to the full game and its Early Access build as well as five Bluestone Shards. The latter, meanwhile, includes everything in the Standard Edition while also packing in access to the Skeleton race option, a blue torch skin, a Hold the Line emote, and access to future Dark and Darker tests. Ironmace has a long road ahead, but it is at least finally available to fans who have been patiently waiting. Stay tuned for any and all updates.