Shadow of the Demon Lord is a roleplaying game of dark fantasy—a genre that weaves elements of horror into a fantasy world. In the game, you create and play characters struggling to survive in a land sliding toward oblivion, a place infested by demons, roaming mobs of undead, strange magic, unhinged cultists, and all in the ruins of the last great empire of mankind. If you love Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay, the Ravenloft and Midnight settings, Joe Abercrombie’s The First Law series, Glen Cook’s Black Company books, or heavy metal music, then this is the game is for you.
The game takes place in a world standing on the brink of the apocalypse. What is the cause? Who is responsible? The Demon Lord, of course! This being of staggering power and boundless evil authors the catastrophes blighting the landscape. Each new horror released reflects the Demon Lord's approach, the touch of its shadow, and its growing hunger for not only the planet but the entirety of all things. Although near, the Demon Lord remains outside the cosmos, rattling the cage of its prison as it strains to escape the Void to visit catastrophic destruction to your world.
The apocalyptic tone is on a dial. If you don’t want to blow everything up right away, tune it down low and the game plays fine as a less perilous, dark fantasy roleplaying game. But if you are inclined to crank up the volume, the game provides several catastrophic templates you can use to model how the world is falling apart. These templates represent the Shadow of the Demon Lord; wherever the Shadow falls, chaos and upheaval are born. The Shadow might loose global pandemics, famines, droughts, earthquakes, demon princes to stomp across the countryside, the living dead, and other world-spanning disasters and threats.