German RPG The Dark Eye Coming to North America

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German RPG The Dark Eye Coming to North America

June 4, 2016

By: Robert Grosso


World famous Tabletop RPG The Dark Eye is coming to North America.

Recently funded by a Kickstarter campaign that raised over $147,000, The Dark Eye will get an English translation and a release in North America for the first time in its 32 year history.

While it will not be the first English version of the game, as The Dark Eye saw a Europe only version of the game's fourth edition published and released in English 2003, to lukewarm reception and negative retrospective reviews


The Dark Eye is a role-playing game developed by Ulrich Kiesow back in 1984. Known in Germany as Das Schwarze Auge, the game is the most popular RPG in the German market today, outselling Dungeons & Dragons and Pathfinder, and remains a popular tabletop game throughout Europe. The system itself is a mix between point buy and dice rolling, where players roll for their eight primary attributes and then have a pool of points to select skills, advantages, and disadvantages with a rather robust character creation system. Combat, and skill checks, originally involving some mathematical calculations in previous editions, have been simplified in the game's current (5th) edition, where skills are attached to a group based on your core attributes, and you have a pool of skill points that can manipulate a singular D20 dice roll. 

The entire series has spawned several books and media, including numerous video games based on the setting of The Dark Eye. In North America, the only exposure to the series has been several PC RPGs based on the setting of The Dark Eye, most notably The Realms of Akarnia Series, also known as The Northlands Trilogy. These three games were a series of dungeon-crawlers published by Sir-Tech in North America and developed by the now defunct Attic Entertainment Software, in the early 1990s. The Akarnia Trilogy, despite mediocre reviews at the time of their releases, have a cult following today. Other games released based on The Dark Eye setting include the Blackguards series, Darkensang: The River of TimeDrakensangand adventure games like The Dark Eye: Chains of Satinav and Memoria.

The Kickstarter is boasting an "aggressive release schedule" for the game, including several new adventure books, digest sized rulebooks, maps and even a stand-alone card game, the Aventuria Adventure Card Game, from now until November of this year. The English version of The Dark Eye is planned for an August 2016 release, and several big stretch goals of optional content, including adventure modules, additional dice, card sets and other goodies for backers, will be subsequently released throughout the year.

Players still interested in testing out The Dark Eye can also look at these quick-start rules of the games 5th edition, provided by the Kickstarter. The Dark Eye will be published by German company Ulisses Spiele, who have held the pen-and-paper license to the series since 2007.

So what are your thoughts on this news? Interested in playing a game like The Dark Eye? Leave your comments below. 

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Staff Writer

A game playing, college teaching scholar who happens to write some articles every so often. Enjoys penning long-form articles that few probably read. Love the art of gaming, preservation, collecting and RPGs. Have worked as a journalist, critic, educator and blogger for over ten years now, with articles published (as user editorials) on Game Revolution and Giant Bomb as well as a contributor for the websites Angry Bananas and Blistered Thumbs. Now making TechRaptor my home.