The Dark Mod

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The Dark Mod
Dark Mod logo.png
Developer(s) Broken Glass Studios
Engine id Tech 4
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows
Release date(s) October 17, 2009
Genre(s) Stealth
Mode(s) Single-player
Distribution Download

The Dark Mod is a free software first-person stealth game, inspired by the Thief series by Looking Glass Studios. The game provides the basic framework and tools - engine, assets, models, an editor - for more than 60 fan-made missions, as well as a few fan-made campaigns. An official The Dark Mod campaign is currently being developed, titled The Crucible of Omens.


The mod takes place in a classic gothic steampunk world. This includes a crossover of elements of fantasy, the Late Middle Ages, the Victorian era and the Industrial Revolution. Although set in a very similar world to that of the original Thief series, the mod distinguishes itself very strictly from the original games, to avoid copyright issues.

In the mod, the player controls an agile thief through a hostile world. He has to use his equipment and the environment to avoid guards, traps, creatures or other threats. Equipment includes things like a blackjack, water arrows, holy water, flashbombs, mines and more. Since the player has only a limited fighting capability, he is supposed to sneak and hide in dark, mostly avoiding combat. The plot and therefore the mission goals depend on the selected fan mission or campaign.


The game was a originally released as a total conversion modification for the Doom 3 video game, but with the release of version 2.0 it became completely standalone on the id Tech 4 game engine. The game's source code is licensed under the GNU General Public License 3 and all other non-software components are under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA.[1]

The mod was and is developed solely as a toolkit only. It includes models, sounds, AI, art, tools and an editor to create fan missions. The development of the mod started in 2004. The first Beta was released in 2008 along with its first mission. In October 2009 v 1.0 was released. The current version is v 2.01. At this point there are over 60 fan missions, and an official campaign is currently in development.[2]

With dhewm3 there is a fork of the id Tech 4 game engine, that was ported to CMake and 64bit, etc.[3] but this is not used, and it is not possible to play The Dark Mod on a 64Bit Linux.


The Dark Mod has been featured by a number of international game magazines, websites and blogs. Examples include the Dutch magazine PC Game Play,[4] the blog Kotaku,[5] the British magazine PC Gamer,[6] the German magazine PC Games[7] and the British gaming blog Rock, Paper, Shotgun.[8]

After going standalone the project received substantial coverage from sites like Slashdot,[9]Destructoid,[10] Joystiq,[11] in addition to most of the above sites.


The Dark Mod is featured on ModDB, where it is ranked in the top 100 as one of the most popular mods. Since its release, it has been in the MOTY top 100 every year since its been on ModDB and has received one award:

  • 2007 Mod of the Year Awards Top 100 (Best upcoming)[12]
  • 2008 Mod of the Year Awards Top 100 (Best upcoming)[13]
  • 2009 Mod of the Year Awards Top 100 (Best released)[14]
  • 2010 Mod of the Year Awards Top 100 (Best released)[15]
  • 2011 Community Award (Editors choice)[16]
  • 2012 Mod of the Year Awards Top 100 (Best released)[17]
  • 2013 Mod of the Year (PC Gamer) [18]


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