Descent into Midnight

Created by Richard Kreutz-Landry

A roleplaying game about community, family, and hope on an aquatic world. Descent into Midnight is a Powered by the Apocalypse game where the players take on the role of psionic alien sea creatures who are defending their home from an otherworldly Corruption.

Latest Updates from Our Project:

Accessible Quick Start, Authors, and the Halfway Point!
over 2 years ago – Sat, Feb 29, 2020 at 08:46:29 PM

We’re halfway through the campaign, but we’re nowhere close to done. We just hit 700 backers, we’re 80% to the third stretch goal, and we’ve got a couple of announcements that we think folks will be excited about as well.

Accessible Quick Start Guide

We’ve just uploaded an accessible version of the Quick Start Guide on the Downloads page of the website. It includes screen reader friendly versions of the Quick Start Guide documents, and Word document versions of the playbooks.

But we’re not done with making the materials accessible yet. During the testing phase of the Word document versions of the playbooks, Megan Tolentino prototyped an HTML version of the playbooks that would help alleviate some of the potential issues around screen reader versions, so we’re going to be developing a single-page HTML version with a simple interface to save/import characters. This will be in addition to the Word document versions we already have available.

Authors For Stretch Goals

We’ve got five fantastic authors lined up for our short fiction stretch goals, which start at the fourth stretch goal and alternate with bonuses for the production team.

Author portraits.

A Favor to Ask!
over 2 years ago – Thu, Feb 27, 2020 at 07:42:30 PM


We’re over 40% of the way to our third stretch goal with 18 days left in the campaign. This is the part of the campaign usually known as the “doldrums” but we’re energized and rolling right along thanks to all of you.

We’d like to ask a favor:

Take a moment and share a character idea for the game on social media and include the hashtag #ThisIsDiMRPG and a link to the kickstarter (, all lowercase). If you're on Twitter, bonus points for tagging us in (@DiMRPG). Let your imagination run wild! We want to hear what the psionic sea creatures of your world look like.

A quick note from Richard:

I had the distinct pleasure of running a world and character building session for the Dugongs & Seadragons crew. We’ve been a fan of their show ever since we learned that there was (as they describe themselves) "an international collection of nerdy-ass marine biologists" and science communicators using Dungeons & Dragons to teach people about marine science and oceanography.

I’m a San Diego kid whose marine science education began and ended with trips to Sea World every other year with my grandmother. One of the things I love so much about our game is that it has been a vehicle to educate myself and others about all things ocean-related. Getting to experience the joy and wonder of building a fantastical aquatic city together with a group of people who have the knowledge and passion to bring it to life in such specific and nuanced ways was an experience I will remember for the rest of my life.

Luckily, we recorded it and you’ll be able to hear it on the Dugongs & Seadragons podcast  feed over the next couple weeks.

I’m so excited to re-listen to the world and characters we built, and to see all the amazing character ideas you all come up with. See you around the #ThisIsDiMRPG hashtag!

Second stretch goal unlocked!
over 2 years ago – Sat, Feb 22, 2020 at 10:22:43 PM

The team was getting ready to post our one-week update and then blammo! We hit the second stretch goal, thanks to all of you. 620 of you have pledged to help us make this project a reality, and we continue to be blown away by your support of the project.

What have we unlocked?

First off, the Streampunks and QueueTimes studio will be producing a second episode of Descent into Midnight that will be available for everyone to watch. Doubling the amount of time we get to spend with the characters and world they’re going to build is such a joy.

Second, all backers will receive digital files for making your own Corruption and Harmony tokens at home. We will send everyone files suitable for a standard printer, 3D printer, and laser cutter that you can use to create tokens for your home game.

What’s next?

Our next stretch goal is $40,000. With that, we will unlock a third episode of the Descent into Midnight game by the Streampunks. We want to see more of what they’ll do with the game, and we’re pretty sure all of you will, too.

The second thing we’re unlocking with the next stretch goal is a bonus for the production team. The amount of time and skill required to put together a project like this is well beyond the scope of what Rich, Taylor, and I could have done on our own. This is our way of giving back to the team and thanking them for their hard work. Descent into Midnight is a game about doing tough things together, and it’s important to us to do right by the people we’re working with.

A word from “Barky” The Bark Of A Mangrove Protects The Tree From Fire And Parasites

“I’ve been told that I should seek out the Mariana trench by an orca I met just yesterday. Is it true that the humans here rarely visit the sea floor? It seems such a waste to have so much of the life of their world hidden from them, but I suppose that’s true almost everywhere.

The Echo has a certain fondness it seems for allowing one to see just enough of the things around them to believe they know the shape of the world, only for something new and interesting to coalesce from the depths and shatter that illusion.

In any case, if you could just point me in the direction of the Pacific, I should be able to find my way from there.”

Monstrous and majestic sea wyrm with one of its pairs of eyes floating outside its head.

More Fishy Goodness

We recently caught wind of Niwri’s Marvelous Menagerie of the Multiverse, a menagerie of fantastical creatures you can use in your games, but there were specifically two things that caught my (Richard’s) eye.

First, there's going to be fish, which is on brand for us. One of the stated goals of Descent into Midnight is to get people interested in aquatic settings and content, and if the first step toward doing that is introducing some fish into your D&D 5e or traditional fantasy game? Go for it!

Second, and admittedly this is the thing that caught my attention, there’s a plush stuffed animal involved if you back at a high enough level.

If you’ve got a minute, check it out!

Mock-ups of Niwri's Marvelous Menagerie of the Multiverse covers.

Kickstarters We Love!
over 2 years ago – Tue, Feb 18, 2020 at 10:59:57 PM

Kickstarters We Love!

Thank you all so much for the support for Descent into Midnight! We’re humbled by your energy and we’d love to help share that energy with the other amazing creators running projects during our campaign. These designers are extremely talented in their own rights, and their work to create fantastic worlds inspires the DiM team. Projects ranging from silly to serious, short to long, these projects are all deserving of your love and energy. We’ve collected links below to our favorites, as well as a couple sentences about each. Check them out and consider showing them the love you showed us!

10 Gallon Tank by Winsmith Games LLC - running until February 20, 2020.

Why we love it: It’s fish! It’s got lovely art! And it’s a fun casual game that you can play with the whole family or at a convention in minutes. They’re also offering a donation to Toys for Tots, and we’re all about donations!

Alone On A Journey by Takuma Okada, running until February 25 2020.

Starting with Alone Among The Stars, Takuma created a framework for solo games that inspired dozens of beautiful hacks. Now, this campaign funds a print run for Alone games, as well as support and encouragement for readers to create their own! Gorgeous in art & layout, we’re stoked to have this produced in physical form!

Aquamarine by Moebial Studios, running until February 25, 2020.

The art and animation for this game of contemplative survival adventure in an alien ocean look like things that might have come straight from our brains. Their protagonist is even called the Seeker.

Beam Saber by Austin Ramsay, launching March 2 2020.

Why we love it: It’s an awesome game about Mechs! Beam Saber uses the Forged In The Dark system to tell great mech stories inspired by media like Gundam, Pacific Rim, and other stories about giant robots and the people who pilot them. Beam Saber looks to be a game of great high octane fun & we can’t wait for it! Richard got to play it with The RPG Academy and it’s a blast!

Celestial Bodies, Orbital Mechanics by Mossy, running until February 21 2020.

Why we love it: It captures some of the best stuff we love about emotional science fiction. It interrogates violence in some really cool ways. “In spite of the differences between you and them, however, they still recognize you as kindred spirits and fellow exiles.”

Disk Horse #1: Off To The Races! by Fiona Geist, running until February 27 2020.

Why we love it: Disk Horse is a cool meta-narrative RPG about DMs and their players, interpreting rules of games to fit their ends and replicating discourse about games in general. It looks like a cool take on how we have conversations about games and Fiona is a talented designer to watch.

Don’t Look: A Short Horror RPG by Quinn Milton, running until March 2 2020.

Why we love it: A short pick up & play horror game, this looks like a great zine to back for those who love to be spooked. “There's nothing there. Not in the shadows beyond the campfire, and not in the closet behind you, and certainly not growing on the ceiling above your head. And even if there was, you wouldn't know what it is, because you have never looked at it. You can't know what it is.”

The Flower Court by Jay Dragon

Why we love it: While not technically on Kickstarter, this project is perfect for the ZineQuest energy and even has stretch goals based on its sales. The game is one of fey intrigue, queer flirting, and magical backstabbing romance. It’s sexy, dramatic, politicking at its best and fans of fey should check it out now.

For The Honor by Quinn Vega, running until February 27 2020.

Why we love it: For The Honor is a really cool She-Ra inspired game “about powerful magic users and skilled warriors trying to make their world a better place and getting all tangled up in the process.” It uses the super fun anthology framework of Firebrands by Meguey and D. Vincent Baker.

Heaven Has No Taste; And Other True Statements by Atlas and Luke, running until February 28 2020.

Why we love it: This is a game about demons and angels falling in love after abandoning their divine purposes. Inspired by fiction like Good Omens, and using the brilliant Belonging Outside Belonging system, this project centers feelings like community, love, and purpose.

I’m Sorry Did You Say Street Magic? by Caro Asercion, running until February 26 2020.

Why we love it: If you enjoy the world-building of DiM you need to check this game out. It uses the framework of Microscope but instead of creating a timeline, it creates wildly imaginative cities. As you play you create districts, locations, and residents of your city, and explore the true names of every special place or resident. This game is pure magic.

Lost Roads by Ary Ramsey, running until February 19 2020.

Why we love it: Lost Roads is a game about climate migration and looks to be an interesting climate fiction fantasy. Inspired by road movies and climate fiction, it follows a group of fantasy travellers with connections to the elements.

memoria by a. fell, running until February 20 2020.

Why we love it: Inspired by games like Microscope and Mobile Frame Zero: Firebrands, Memoria jumps through time to explore character relationships and focuses on memories and tokens to drive its narrative.

Mermaids After The End: by ELH, running until March 14 2020.

Why we love it: Post-apocalyptic transhumanist mermaids delving the deep for unknown treasures. We were sold right from the start. The art is the main reason for the Kickstarter (the game is done and available now on and what we’ve seen looks amazing.

Procession by Zargo Games, running until February 21 2020.

Why we love it: Procession is “a game about monsters and miracles” that promises to be a super cool dive into what makes us human, and what connects us through community, empathy, and storytelling. “It is a game about empathizing with bizarre beings.”

Snow and Salt: Monsters from the Taiga & Mangrove by Danielle Osterman, running until February 24 2020.

Why we love it: This anthology features creative monsters from two specific biomes, the taiga and the mangrove. Fans of DiM will especially love the mangrove monsters, especially as our very own Barky finds their name from the trees that give this biome its name. This super cool anthology is filled with talented creators and showcases a range of awesome creatures!

Space Goblins! by Viditya Voleti, running until February 29 2020.

Why we love it: This game is SUPREMELY wholesome. You play as space goblins driving your garbage ship around the galaxy, smashing it into stuff, stealing garbage to add to your ship, and having a romp in space. During play, you build your ship out of legos or other toys!

This Thing We Started by Tracy Barnett, running until February 24 2020.

Why we love it: BECAUSE WE LOVE TRACY!! This one features a member of the DiM team but we also want to shout it out because it looks like a rad game in its own right. Following the Descended From The Queen framework, this game explores how creators coalesce their creation. It’s a metanarrative of inspiration, creativity, and the relationship between artist and art.

Thistle and Hearth by Natalie The Knife and Aven McConnaughey, running until February 28 2020.

Why we love it: Thistle and Hearth is a supernatural game of community, power, history, and dark fairy tales. It takes place in a wintry village entangled with fey politics, rising dead, and reflections of the designers’ experiences in Lutheran Minnesota.

Venture & Dungeon by Riley Rethal and Jay Dragon, running until March 2 2020.

Why we love it: This pair of Belonging Outside Belonging offers two spectacular takes on dungeon crawl games. Venture is a heady and introspective look at heroic fantasy that encourages players to interrogate the role of the adventurer within their world. Dungeon follows a group of kids playing RPGs while exploring emotional themes through the lens of their fantasy adventures. Both games are super unique and their designers are some of the most talented out there.

We also recognize that there are countless talented creatives out there in countries not supported by Kickstarter. Amazing friend (and talented game designer in his own right) Mahar has compiled a great Twitter thread of folks you should also check out!

First Stretch Goal Unlocked!
over 2 years ago – Tue, Feb 18, 2020 at 03:47:13 PM

The first stretch goal is away! The first stretch goal is away!

We did it! The team is overcome at the moment. Knowing we’re going to see the #Streampunks bring our game to life with all the love, talent, and compassion they show every time they go on air is piling onto the joy from funding this weekend.

You are all fantastic.

(Bonus points to all the Star Wars nerds who made the connection between the heading above and Echo Base. Richard is a pun monster and refuses to be stopped.)

What have we unlocked?

First, the Streampunks and QueueTimes studio will be producing a one-shot episode of Descent into Midnight that will be available for everyone to watch. If you’ve seen Callisto 6, Shield of Tomorrow, or their current show, Clear Skies, you know exactly why we’re so excited. If you haven’t, please go check them out. You won't be disappointed.

The Streampunks troupe.

Second, every single backer will be receiving a PDF print-at-home coloring book full of creatures inspired by Descent into Midnight. We knew as soon as we came up with the idea that this would be part of the first stretch goal. We want kids and kids-at-heart alike to be inspired to learn about the ocean and all the wonderful life within it. We are so excited to be working with artists like Taylor Livingston, Jacob Blackmon, Ben Sigas, and Victor Allen to make it happen, all of whom have done wonderful art for us during the development process. And there may be even more in the mix by the time we’re done.

Here's a sample page:

Coloring book page with seal-octopus and kelp growing up from rocky seabed.

What's next?

Our next stretch goal is $35,000. With that, we will unlock an additional episode of the Descent into Midnight #Streampunks game. The kinds of stories you can tell with the game really shine when given the opportunity to breathe a little and show how the characters, the Sanctuary they have, and the community they protect grow and change over time. As Harmony builds up in the community and the Corruption encroaches, we will get to see the struggle and the bonds forged as our aquatic guardians face it together.

We will also be unlocking a set of digital files for making your own Harmony and Corruption tokens. The community map is an integral part of long term play, and the game calls for you to use some sort of token (whatever you have handy) to represent the Harmony and Corruption that affect your city. With this stretch goal, we will produce a PDF of printable tokens you can use at home. In addition, we will be producing files you can use to make your own tokens if you have access to a 3D printer or laser cutter.

Some backers may wonder why we aren’t producing physical tokens ourselves and sending them to you. The answer is simple: producing and shipping physical goods can be complex, time consuming, and expensive. We don’t want to do anything to jeopardize the project or getting the books to you as soon as possible.

A word from “Barky” The Bark Of A Mangrove Protects The Tree From Fire And Parasites

Finally, we have a special guest in this physical realm. A group of you following the project on Twitter banded together in the month before we launched to help us create them, or as they would put it, call them forth from the Echo. Their portrait, and the city you helped us create, will appear in the book as a special thank you to everyone who has supported us through this process.

Everyone, meet The Bark Of A Mangrove Protects The Tree From Fire And Parasites, or as they’ve graciously allowed us to shorten it: “Barky.” If you’d like to hear more from them, you can follow the Descent into Midnight twitter account (@DiMRPG) to see what they’re up to.

Without further ado, here's what Barky (they/them), a Monstrous & Majestic Seeker, gifted with Reality Tunneling and Echoic Illusions, a Soft soul who Lives Within The Echo Itself has to say today.

Monstrous and majestic sea wyrm with one of its pairs of eyes floating outside its head.

"It's been a few days since I passed through the Echo into this world. Nice enough oceans, though I don't care for the amount of, well, dry land I've become aware of. That said, my personal preferences and needs don't overshadow those of the beings who live in the dryness, so I'll move on.

It seems that some group of them, humans, that is, are working on a method of collaborative storytelling. The Echo has sent them glimpses of worlds like my own. The stories tell of the Guardians, of compassion, and of hope. It seems they are in need of such things.

Oh! And they have this amazing method of applying pigment to surfaces. They call it coloring and they have, well, outlines of denizens of the deep that you can customize!

Hope and coloring. I'm new to this world, but it seems a fitting pair of things."