clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Steamforged is taking another stab at the Dark Souls license with co-op board game

Third time’s a charm

If you buy something from a Polygon link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

Dark Souls: The Board Game - collection of miniatures on the tabletop. Photo: Charlie Hall/Polygon
Charlie Hall is Polygon’s tabletop editor. In 10-plus years as a journalist & photographer, he has covered simulation, strategy, and spacefaring games, as well as public policy.

Prepare to die. Or rather, to work together amicably with friends and family. Steamforged Games, known for its lavish strategy board games based on Japanese-made video games, is back with another take on Dark Souls. This time it’s a spin-off cooperative game titled Dark Souls: The Board Game - The Sunless City, with “refreshed rules driven by community feedback.” If that’s the case, it could help revitalize what has been a challenging franchise for the British publisher.

Steamforged burst onto the tabletop scene in 2016 with a $5.4 million Kickstarter campaign for Dark Souls: The Board Game. But while early previews of the game were promising, the final product was a bit of a grueling slog — and not in a good way. After a cavalcade of other tabletop games based on video game IP, including the Resident Evil franchise, the company followed it up in 2022 with a tabletop role-playing game based on the rules of 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons. Again, it wowed us here at Polygon. But the launch was plagued by bugs, prompting the publisher later issued an apology. It then corrected and reissued the earliest batch of books sent to backers.

It’s unclear how this new game relates to a free download that was shared publicly to the original campaign page — from way back in 2016 — just this last October. The 32-page, full-color rulebook is titled Dark Souls: The Board Game - The Sunless City. It includes rules for a cooperative campaign mode set in Lordran, with bosses Dragon Slayer Ornstein and Executioner Smough, just like this new board game. The post even includes cards to run the mode, which can be printed at sites like DriveThruCards. We’ve reached out to Steamforged for more clarity. Meanwhile, a Facebook post is currently filled with customers asking similar questions.

Dark Souls: The Board Game - The Sunless City Core Set is currently available for pre-order at $109.99. The game is expected to ship Feb. 14, 2024.

The next level of puzzles.

Take a break from your day by playing a puzzle or two! We’ve got SpellTower, Typeshift, crosswords, and more.