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Blades in the Dark RPG is being adapted into a television series

Heists become home-viewing.

Blades in the Dark, the dark fantasy roleplaying game about pulling off heists, is being adapted into a television series.

The upcoming adaptation was revealed via an article on Screen Daily shared by Blades in the Dark creator John Harper, who also designed the Forged in the Dark system that powers the RPG.

The RPG-inspired show is currently being developed by a production company called Warp Films, which has previously produced series such as This is England ‘86 - a drama focused on the UK mod revival scene of the mid 1980s - and the film adaptation of the LGBTQ+ musical Everybody's Talking About Jamie. Further details around the upcoming series, such as casting and writing credits, are yet to be unveiled.

Blades in the Dark is a tabletop RPG that sees players becoming a group of thieves living in the city of Doskvol, a steampunk fantasy setting that rewards the cunning and punishes the reckless. In the game, the players must work together in different roles in their crew - for example, as the influential Spider or the sinister Whisper - in order to carry out various illegal jobs across Doskvol, preferably without being caught.

Rather than planning out things beforehand, players are encouraged to get into the action of the job first and then use a flash-back mechanic to explain how they prepared for any particular obstacles that they might encounter. Whenever player characters attempt to overcome a challenge, they decide which ability they think is most suitable and apply their current position - like being risky or controlled - to the roll, with the result determining their subsequent success or failure.

Should player characters find themselves under too much mental or physical stress, then they may not be capable of carrying out any heists in the future.

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Blades in the Dark is published by Evil Hat Productions, the studio responsible for releasing the majority of Harper’s RPGs, as well as Monster of the Week - which has players experiencing an episodic horror campaign - and Fate Core, an RPG that enables the games master and players to come up with their own setting.

Blades in the Dark's Forged in the Dark system - designed by Harper - has since gone on to power other RPGs, including Band of Blades and Scum & Villainy, both created by Stras Acimovic and John LeBoeuf-Little.

There is currently no set release date for the upcoming Blades in the Dark television series.

Edit: This article previously stated that John Harper created Band of Blades and Scum & Villainy, this has been corrected to Stras Acimovic and John LeBoeuf-Little. Harper created Forged in the Dark, the system that powers both titles.

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Alex Meehan avatar
Alex Meehan: After writing for Kotaku UK, Waypoint and Official Xbox Magazine, Alex became a member of the Dicebreaker editorial family. Having been producing news, features, previews and opinion pieces for Dicebreaker for the past three years, Alex has had plenty of opportunity to indulge in her love of meaty strategy board games and gothic RPGS. Besides writing, Alex appears in Dicebreaker’s D&D actual play series Storybreakers and haunts the occasional stream on the Dicebreaker YouTube channel.
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