The Labyrinth of Souls fiction series just dropped big time with this book, Benediction Denied, by the amazing Elizabeth Engstrom, released by ShadowSpinners Press. This is the first in a series of stand alone novels that will be coming out in the coming months.
How awesome is it that Dungeon Solitaire has its own line of novels? The awesomeness cannot be overstated! Could DS be the only independently designed, Kickstarter funded game with its own fiction series? It very well might be.
Not only that, but the quality of the authors who are contributing to this project is mind blowing. Elizabeth Engstrom is the author of fourteen books and has over 250 short stories, articles, and essays in print. She is a sought-after teacher and keynote speaker at writing conferences, conventions, and seminars around the world.
And these are not generic dungeon stories either. These are original creations of dark fantasy, for the Labyrinth of Souls is more than an ancient ruin filled with monsters, trapped treasure, and the lost tombs of bygone kings. It is a manifestation of a mythic underworld, existing at a crossroads between people and cultures, between time and space, between the physical world and the deepest reaches of the psyche. It is a dark mirror held up to human experience, in which you may find your dreams … or your doom.
Adam Swan is a hydrologist engaged in humanitarian efforts in the Congo when he is kidnapped by rebels and thrown into a makeshift prison. He is left to die — or worse — if his ransom is not paid. In a surprising series of events, Adam escapes the prison into an underground labyrinth where reality and sanity no longer rule. Tested by the gods of the underworld, Adam navigates the consequences of his past actions, which take him to the brink of death — and beyond.
Dare to enter the Labyrinth of Souls …
The book is available now on Amazon in paperback and Kindle format, and can be found on a variety of other ebook formats through Books2Read.
I am very excited to announce that ShadowSpinners Press will be releasing a series of short stand-alone novels inspired by Dungeon Solitaire: Labyrinth of Souls! A number of outstanding writers have already committed to the project and are at various stages in writing their Labyrinth of Souls books. Authors so far include Elizabeth Engstrom, Eric Witchey, Christina Lay, John Reed, Stephen T. Vessels, Cheryl Owen-Wilson, Cynthia Ray, Pamela Jean Herber, and me.
That’s an incredible list to be a part of, and I am super excited to be working on a project that includes this many amazing writers. And I am overjoyed that they have all showed such an interest in fictionalizing underworld adventures inspired by the Labyrinth of Souls.
The Labyrinth of Souls is more than an ancient ruin filled with monsters, trapped treasure, and the lost tombs of bygone kings. It is a manifestation of a mythic underworld, existing at a crossroads between people and cultures, between time and space, between the physical world and the deepest reaches of the psyche. It is a dark mirror held up to human experience, in which you may find your dreams… or your doom. Entrances to this realm can appear in any time period, in any location. There are innumerable reasons why a person may enter, but it is a place antagonistic to those who do, a place where monsters dwell, with obstacles and illusions to waylay adventurers, and whose very walls can be a force of corruption. It is a haunted place, ever at the edge of sanity.
Each Labyrinth of Souls novel will feature a journey into a unique manifestation of the underworld. Get ready to delve into the Labyrinth in a totally new way, and stay tuned for more author announcements and release dates for the first Labyrinth of Souls novels.
Dungeon Solitaire: Tomb of Four Kings is now available in a free Spanish language edition thanks to a translation by Pablo Sancho Fernández. Solitario de la Mazmorra: La Tumba de los Cuatros Reyes can be downloaded as a free print and play PDF here. Many thanks to Pablo Sancho Fernández for his generosity, his precise translation work, his many questions, and his patience in getting this edition out to the public. I am very happy to be able to share Dungeon Solitaire with Spanish speakers all over the world.
Help spread the excitement of Solitario de la Mazmorra by sharing the game with your Spanish speaking friends. This original version of the game is playable with any standard deck of playing cards, and is the basis for the larger, more expansive tarot version, Dungeon Solitaire: Labyrinth of Souls. The Labyrinth of Souls rulebook is available (currently English edition only) on Amazon and other online book retailers and the Labyrinth of Souls custom tarot deck is available through Gamecrafter.
Free PDF Download
Solitario de la Mazmorra: La Tumba de los Cuatros Reyes
Rulebooks for Dungeon Solitaire: Labyrinth of Souls are now available for $12.99 in the US. You can purchase copies direct from Createspace here (I do get a slightly higher royalty for these sales), but if you’re ordering other stuff, you can get it on Amazon with free shipping. You can also order through most Amazon International sites, immediately … or very soon.
In any case, please take a moment to a review the game on Amazon, or on your blog or social media. Reviews are huge help in spreading the word about Dungeon Solitaire and allowing me to continue making expansions and more games. Check out some quotes from previous reviews and Labyrinth of Souls Kickstarter backers below.
REVIEWS FOR THE ORIGINAL DUNGEON SOLITAIRE:
“It’s an amazing game …”
–Tim Snider, The Savage Afterworld
“It is called Dungeon Solitaire … and it is brilliant.”
–John Payne, Sycarion Diversions
LABYRINTH OF SOULS BACKER QUOTES
“An extremely awesome, super fun game.”
“Amazingly detailed and well thought out … Absolutely fantastic.”
“I have been consumed by this game and overjoyed at how much clever thought went into the making of this project.”
“There are literally hundreds, if not thousands, of solitaire variants out there, but this is exactly what I’ve been looking for since the dawn of time. It’s amazing something like this hasn’t been created until now.”
“Received my book today and absolutely love it.”
“Arrived and I couldn’t stop playing it … :-)”
As of today, all print proofs are approved for Dungeon Solitaire: Labyrinth of Souls! The game is finished! I just put in an order for 325 rulebooks for our Kickstarter backers, and tomorrow I’ll be bulk ordering more than 800 decks of Labyrinth of Souls tarot cards! I’ll be waiting on the print runs, but everything should at least be in the process of shipping by the end of the month.
It’s been an amazing eight months of development, funding, and production. And incredibly, it’s been just about one year since the release of the original Dungeon Solitaire game last summer.
My work is not done yet though. While I wait for the print runs, I’ll be finishing the final stretch goals and rewards for major donors, including editing and layout for the Digital Designer’s Notebook and Digital Artbook pdfs, and fine art prints of one of my hand drawn dungeon maps. In the meantime, here’s a preview of what the final products will look like. For anybody who didn’t get in on the Kickstarter, there will be a public release around mid July. Stay tuned for more information as we get closer.
I’m very excited to reveal the rulebook cover for Dungeon Solitaire: Labyrinth of Souls! The beautiful artwork and design are by the game’s exclusive illustrator, Josephe Vandel. I’ve been so busy with the production process that I haven’t had much time to post updates here, but as we get closer to the end of this epic journey, I am more excited than ever to share this game with all our backers and then with the rest of the world.
I just ordered print proofs of both the standard and monochrome card decks. I’m super excited, but it will be a week or so before I get them. In the meantime, I’m putting in final corrections to the rulebook interior and will be ordering print proofs of that as well. If all goes well, we will be shipping to our backers on time toward the end of June. Expect a public release sometime in July.
Mark L. Chance has written an excellent adventure featuring one of my hand drawn maps. “The Tombs of the Whispering Worms” is a descent into madness for Swords & Wizardry or other old school fantasy games. The adventure was recently featured on TSRs blogsite Multiverse, and is available as a free pdf download.
Here’s an image of page 1 (linked to the pdf) and a high resolution unnumbered image of the original map. Hope you enjoy the whispering worms!
Thirteen year old Dungeon Solitaire player August Mericle has played a perfect game of Tomb of Four Kings! That means not just a win, but a 100 point win, with all the treasure in hand as one exits the dungeon. August’s dad said he played several hours a day for about four days before winning the perfect game.
As far as I know, August is the first person ever to win a perfect game. I knew it was possible, and thought it was only a matter of time, so I was super excited to hear about his game. I was also very happy to hear the game had been played by a thirteen year old. My early gaming experiences were one of the inspirations for creating Tomb of Four Kings, so it’s great to be able to share it with the next generation of gamers.
A huge congratulations to August on his game! That’s a photo of the winning layout, with eight turns on the delve, four hit points, and all the treasure. Pretty awesome!
*Tomb of Four Kings is available free here.
The new Dungeon Solitaire game, Labyrinth of Souls is funded and in production. And as another step to bringing the new game into the world, I am releasing an updated, revised edition of the original Dungeon Solitaire: Tomb of Four Kings! It’s available here as a free download.
There are no changes to the rules, but I clarified a couple rules, corrected typos, improved phrasing, and added suit symbols. Additionally, this new Tomb of Four Kings includes the winning game walkthrough, improved images, and a mention of Labyrinth of Souls in the back.
I will not be deleting the old pdfs, at least not immediately, since other websites may link to them directly. However, if you have links to the Tomb of Four Kings rules, please update those links to the newly revised rules. Or better yet, just link to this post, or to matthewlowes.com/games.
I hope you enjoy the new rules packet. Don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions about the rules. Send me your high score, especially if you get a perfect game (4/100). As far as I know, nobody has done it yet. It may be highly improbable, but it should be possible.
Free PDF Download
Dungeon Solitaire: Tomb of Four Kings
Absolutely amazing! The Labyrinth of Souls Kickstarter has been a monumental success, with a total of 638 backers from all over the world and $23,363 in funding. And what an incredible result. Every stretch goal was fulfilled, adding a ton of additional content to the game and some extras as well. I am already looking forward to all the creative work to put everything together, and to shipping out rewards.
Thanks so much to all our backers, and to everyone who helped spread the word about Dungeon Solitaire. They really made this project possible. They made this funding campaign a huge success, and made the Labyrinth of Souls a reality!
I’ll be taking a short break for the holiday, and then will be diving into the process of putting the rulebook and card deck together. I have a draft of the core rules written, and Josephe has created a handful of cards already, but there is still a lot of work to do. All backers will get a fulfillment survey in the new year, and I’ll be sending out Kickstarter updates every few weeks to keep backers apprised of the process right up until rewards are shipped out.
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions regarding the Labyrinth of Souls. You can reach me through Kickstarter, through the Contact Page on this website, or through social media.