This time around, we’re shining our Indie Spotlight on Dark Flame, a 2D action-RPG /Metroidvania title that has been in development for three years now. The development has been handled by one person, a fellow by the name of Warren Smith. Yes, just one person – That really shows the commitment of Warren. However, he’s not totally alone as he had used a portion of his own money to hire several artists as well as someone to work on the music for the game. Though perhaps isn’t the first time you’be heard about this game, as it was also featured on Square-Enix’s Collective initiative (here). In fact, it was through this that I first noticed Dark Flame.


Dark Flame is being touted as a tribute to games of old and from what I’ve played, it definitely pulls that off. The concept is very familiar to several games that are very near and dear to my gaming heart. I’m also seeing some Dark Souls gameplay elements in the game as well in regards to leveling up your weapons at pyres, which seems to be a shoutout to the bonfires in the Dark Soul series. The combat also seems to be a bit harder than most games in this genre as well. Curses like vampirism that force you to kill to stay alive or your health will tick away, or confuse debuff which swaps your controls around. The enemies aren’t pushovers either, thankfully. Some require multiple hits, which others can rush you and constantly push you back while damaging you. So you not only have to be quick but pay attention to your surroundings as well.  


Gameplay-wise, Dark Flame is very similar to Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. The combat, the move set is all very familiar, secondary weapon usage, as is the progression system in which you level up your character. The bulk of the game available in the alpha has you becoming familiar with the game, combat, traversing the playable areas, and even a boss fight to test your mettle. There are power-ups to locate, plenty of baddies who want you out of the picture and even some environmental obstacles to get around. And of course, character death, which results in you respawning at a save point while the monies you collected were left at the spot you died. There’s that Dark Souls reference, yet instead of experience or souls, you lose your money. That money is important as you’re able to buy new equipment and skills, so you’ll want to make sure you collect it if you can. 


Even though it’s a bit early, the game does have the makings to be yet another hit in the opened armed Indie gaming scene. I enjoyed what I played and despite it being an alpha, the game has a surprising amount of polish. The only thing that really stinks about the game so far is that the alpha is way too short. I want more! If you’re a fan of games like this, keep Dark Flame on your radar and while you’re at it, why not toss a few bucks to help the development of the title. And in exchange, you’ll get access to the alpha build. Then you can play to your heart’s content but even better, you’ll be able to offer feedback towards the games’ development cycle. 

All in all, I feel that Dark Flame has a lot going for it, despite a few rough edges. I’ll be watching this title and keeping tabs on it for the time being. Hopefully, it won’t be too much longer until the game hits beta status. While I’d love to see the game finished, you really don’t want to rush development, especially on something that has the potential to be great. So keep on working on this Warren, I’m sure I won’t be the only person waiting for the game when we can play this from start to end!

To find out more information on Dark Flame, you can head over to the official page at, as well as the Patreon page where you can help Warren fund the development by going here –

About The Author

Keith Mitchell
Editor-in-chief and all-around good guy!

Keith Mitchell is the Founder and Editor in Chief of The Outerhaven. A grizzled IT professional during the day, but a passionate lover of video games after his 9-5 grid. Loves playing the Dark Souls series and has been gaming since he was 6 years old. He's 40+ now, that old guy that he is.