Survive the Dark Ages Now in Steam Greenlight

Another busy week! We have made a lot of improvements to the responsiveness of the game, so that now it should view a lot better in mobile. Also we have made a game-play video, and added a new help page for new players that has some basic tips and advice.


We have also launched a project greenlight for a desktop version of the game thanks to all of you that have supported it already!

Changes this week:

— New icons for soldiers

— Improved responsiveness of navbars

— Fixed bug that allowed chancellors to banish their ruler

— Fixed a bug with the registration that did not save failed submissions

— Improved the player activity system so that inactive players do not take silver income from kingdoms

— Income from a territory now depends on the number of other territories a kingdom controls

— Released full game map, in a lower resolution faster loading version

— Reorganised the desktop menu adding more dropdowns

— Territories are now vulnerable to random attacks from Vikings, Saxons and other raiders

Survive the Dark Ages – Going Viking

So first of all thanks to all our backers for helping us to successfully conclude our kickstarter campaign. It is great to have a chance to expand the game map, and add some new features that help to flesh out the world of the game.

With Norway in the game, you can expect more of a Viking theme, and also some new lands to be introduced to the game, courtesy of our new “Explore” option.

explore menu
The New Explore Menu

This new menu allows you to go of “Viking” which basically means going on raids! Normal raids can earn you silver, food and very occasionally an interesting item or two. You can also sail off in search of new lands, to start a new kingdom in a far away land! but beware, the cost of this is losing all your territories at home, and a fair amount of gold too!

Changes this week:

— Chancellors are now a lot more powerful, able to make almost any decision a ruler can.

— Battles are now significantly in favour of defenders, you must be well prepared if you want to win!

— Up to three quarters of a beaten defending force can potentially escape to join their commander’s main army

— New “Crier” role for kingdoms, a noble who’s job is to send messages to other players on behalf of the king

— Norway has now been added to the game

— Players can now have special items (at the moment they are decorative, we will add functionality to them soon!)

— New explore menu that allows players to discover new lands! or just go on a lucrative raid!

Survive the Dark Ages – Map Expansion and Improvements to Combat

Well its been a  busy week! A lots of the small Kingdoms that formed after the “Pictland Anarchy” has now fallen, leaving just three kingdoms standing.

We have been working hard on improvements to the game map as part of our Kickstarter campaign. As a result we are pleased to announce that the initial England and Ireland map has been greatly expanded, with the number of territories to fight over doubled.

The new Expanded Game Map

This also leaves us in great shape for the release of Norway, which we can now expect to be live as soon as the Kickstarter is ended. On that subject there are just 4 days to support the Kickstarter and grab some more gold!

We have also added four new characteristics for player’s characters:

Piety trade image

Represents how Pious the player’s character is in the eyes of of the church

Learning trade image

Represents how learned the player’s Character is

Attack trade image

Represents how effectively the player’s character can attack

Defence trade image 0

Represents how effectively the player’s character can defend

Changes this week:

— Fixed the bug on the troop transfer menu that messed up transfers when you were low on resources.

— New system message to all players when a diplomatic proposal is sent

— Four new characteristics for all users

— Expansion to the game map (there are now more than twice as many territories)

— Battles are now less lethal, it might take more than one assault o overcome a territory

— When a player loses a territory, they get a proportion of the garrison returned to their army

— Players can transfer troops back to their army straight from the victory menu

— New button that allows players to directly attack again after a failed attack

— The Territory menu has now been split into “attack” and “defend” menus with the all territories menu moved to the overview screen.

Survive the Dark Ages – Civil War and New Decisions Menu

So its been a  very eventful week in the game!

After the Pict’s managed to conquer the whole of Britain, the new “Anarchy” Module was added. There was only a brief peace before a massive civil war broke out with every Noble able to attack the lands of every other noble. Eventually the War led to 30 Independent factions forming, one for each landowning noble. Lets see what happens now as these factions fight it out for domination.

Changes this week:

— New “Anarchy” module that allows infighting whenever one Kingdom achieves dominance

— New “Player colours” added to the game

— New “Kingdom Collapse” module that creates independent kingdoms for each landowning noble

— The scoreboard was reset for April

— New decision menu developed that gives each player one decision to make every 12 hours


Survive the Dark Ages – Kingdom Ranks

We get a lot of questions about players ranks, so here is some more information on that (this information will be put on the game Wiki too) :

Whilst all players are nobles, some are more noble than others. The rank of the average noble in a Kingdom is based on the size of the Kingdom, so while a Duchy is full of counts and countesses, a Kingdom is full of Princes and Princesses.

High Lords

However, that is not all. The Ruler may decide that a certain noble has demonstrated considerable skill or dedication, and so they can reward them by making them one of the “High Lords” of the kingdom. This automatically bumps your default rank up by one, so a Countess becomes a Minor Countess for example. There is also the added benefit of access to the exclusive “High Lords” chat, where plans can be made by the Elite of the Kingdom, with less risk of spies.


The Heir of a kingdom. In the event that the Ruler is removed, or abdicates, it is the heir who takes over.  Whilst their rank stays the same, they gain the ability to make diplomatic decisions in the Kingdom that they will someday rule.


Hopefully it goes without saying that this is the most important rank in the realm. It pays to listen to the instructions of the ruler, as they have the power to Banish any player from the Kingdom, and confiscate their territories. Their rank is also bumped up beyond even that of their high lords.

See you next time!

New Kickstarter Launched

We have launched our Kickstarter! And we have already reached out minimum funding! But there are still more stretch goals to reach!

You can see the current state of the kickstarter here:

Changes this week:

— The game now shows diplomatic status on front page

— We have added player activity to the scoreboard

— We have rearranged the message buttons to make them easier to use

— Rebellion cost is now linked to the number of kingdoms in the game

— We also fixed bugs with the scoreboard, messages from destroyed kingdoms and a bug that affected the income display for high lords in the tribal kingdom type

Survive the Dark Ages – Kingdom Roles

This time we wanted to flesh out a bit more the recently added ‘Roles’ for the game (this information will be put on the game Wiki too).

Roles are intended to help Rulers both reward their fellow players in their kingdom, and create more structure to the way Kingdoms function. There is also a nice boost to the Roleplaying (RPG ) aspects of the game. They do not confer many material benefits as of yet, but knowing that you will have the respect of both your Ruler and fellow players in the matters that pertain to your role is reward in itself!

Current Roles:

Chancellor – This role can be thought of as a bit like the chief negotiator of the realm, although they may also be given other responsibilities of a financial or legal nature (the term originated with the Romans, to describe a type of legal secretary). Their importance depends on the governing style of their Ruler, but they could be considered the most powerful lord in the realm, (outside of the heir). They are given the ability to make alliances, and make wars and truces on behalf of their kingdom.

Marshal – Whilst the term originally meant “stable boy” it now signifies the main military commander of the kingdom. The most successful kingdoms have now learned that it is much more effective for players to group their troops into one larger army. Therefore it is down to the Marshal to oversee this, and quite probably lead the army that results. They should take care to ensure that they do not keep all the captured territories for themselves, as the more land you hold, the more expensive it gets to move troops around!

Spymaster – The spymaster’s role is to gather and collate information. They are not the spies themselves, instead they are the one who recruits and rewards spies, and comes up with schemes to benefit their realm. They are also tasked with ensuring that rebellious Lords are found and rooted out before they can do serious damage!

Archbishop – Don’t let the peaceful sounding title fool you, this position is at least as important as the others, if not more so! Archbishops are tasked with tending to the needs of newly arrived players, who are not yet familiar with all the rules of the game, and most likely severely lacking in resources. In any war between kingdoms, it is the one with the better archbishop that will prosper in the long run, as they allow the number of active players to grow, and ensure that all players know the rules.

See you next time!

Launching Black Badger Labs News

Welcome to the launch of Black Badger Labs News section.

This week has been busy, we are now gearing up for a small Kick Starter campaign for Survive the Dark Ages that will allow players the chance to expand our increasingly cramped game map, and also get your hands on some of that gold!

In preparation for this, we can now debut the new Survive the Dark Ages trailer:

Changes this week:

— Moving all the chat pages together, and adding a new “High Lord” chat for all the muckety mucks (elites) of a Kingdom to get together and make secret plans;

—  Public messages now cost 15 Papers each;

— Inactive players will now silently slip out of sight in the kingdom page, and stop receiving income from territories; if they start being more active they will be automatically returned to where they were;

— Small cosmetic improvements to many of the tables and the addition of a new map, and overview link to the toolbars (oh yeah and a link to the new News page).

See you next time!


Indie Game Development