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From the creators of Wasteland 2 and Torment comes the long awaited sequel to the Bard's Tale trilogy. Thank you for making this game a reality. The bard is back!
From the creators of Wasteland 2 and Torment comes the long awaited sequel to the Bard's Tale trilogy. Thank you for making this game a reality. The bard is back!
33,741 backers pledged $1,519,680 to help bring this project to life.

The Bard Begins His Tale...

Posted by inXile entertainment (Creator)

Three times before
Did evil's lords
Descend on Skara Brae

And thrice did rise
Brave heroes, wise
To drive them all away

Now comes a fourth
To shackle the north
And enslave the world of men

Thus heroes bold
As in songs of old
Must take up sword again

In dungeons vast
Do these evils past
Their ancient secrets keep

So down we go
To face the foes
That lurk in Barrows Deep

Greetings Citizens of Caith,

Chris Keenan here, VP of Development at inXile, and we come to you with two pieces of very good news.

First off, next week will be the release of the backer Alpha, and backers’ first opportunity to go hands-on with the game!

This demo showcases many of our core features that we have highlighted in previous Kickstarter updates. This twenty minute Alpha Systems Test includes looks at combat, puzzles & traps, puzzle weapons, Songs of Exploration, and more (including one often asked about Easter egg).

We know many of you are excited to check out the game, and we hope those of you with Alpha reward access enjoy this first hands-on look at it. We’ll have more information next week on how to access the Alpha Test, as well as how to leave feedback for us. We’re excited to get the game into the hands of those Alpha backers!


For the rest of you, there are plenty of ways to get in on the action. Next week marks the start of this year’s Game Developers Conference, one of the game industry’s biggest and most important events. As part of the conference, from 03/21 - 03/23, we will be demoing The Bard’s Tale IV using the backer Alpha Test. There will also be plenty of press coverage of the game, so keep your eyes open (and we’ll be sure to link to some of the coverage in a future update, too).

The second big piece of news you might have caught at the beginning of this update. We are proud to announce the full title of our game and share it with you first - The Bard’s Tale IV: Barrows Deep! We tossed around a number of possible subtitles for a long time. The Destiny Knight and Thief of Fate described important story hooks for those games, but for the return of The Bard’s Tale after so many years, we wanted a name that captured the essence of a dungeon crawler.

From the catacombs beneath the Mad God’s temple to teleporting between realms, The Bard’s Tale series has always been about seeking out places that only adventurers would dare, descending into the depths, overcoming monsters and puzzles, and defeating the evil within... and to be heroes worthy of a tale sung by a bard. Exploring the dark corners of the world is the essence of a dungeon crawler, and in Barrows Deep, your adventure awaits!

We hope you like it, and please let us know what you think! We’ll return with David’s look at the Practitioner archetype soon, but for now enjoy the ride over the next couple of weeks as GDC and the backer Alpha Test take center stage! Thanks to all of you for helping us make The Bard’s Tale IV: Barrows Deep a reality.

Chris Keenan
VP of Development

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    1. medivac on

      Release date October 2017 . . . . . . . (insert slow hand clap here)and we are only at Alpha. Well at least I have Battletech to play for the next few years, until you hit Beta. ;)

    2. RC on

      Barrow's Deep...barrel is's a thinly disguised bard beer joke. I get it.

    3. John Henry II McMills Warrington on

      @inXile entertainment Great idea! It'll be a challenge but I'll give it a try. Where would this poetry contest be held (I'm guessing online not down the pub)?

    4. Starfox72 on

      I don't think the chosen name "barrows deep" is good. It isn't a common name, internationally, it's not commonly understood.
      Poor marketing choice. Besides it isn't really attractive or make you want to play the game.
      Thief of fate isn't very original but it's much more promising and catchier.

    5. Missing avatar

      Saxon1974 on

      Cool thanks for the update. I love the bard song really gives me nostalgia tickles. Not a big fan of the Barrows Deep title; feels very generic. Still glad we get to see the game soon.

    6. Paul Marzagalli on

      Thanks for the kind words!

    7. Jeremie Lariviere

      great update, thanks!

    8. TheGratefulNed on

      Great update. Can't wait to see some in-game video from the Alpha release.

    9. inXile entertainment 3-time creator on

      @Simon and others: Alpha systems access started at the $185 "Behind the Scenes" tier. Check your reward tiers again. Many of you, like Simon, will get beta access when that releases (no publicly announced time yet).

      @Michael and John Henry - Good to know we have some poets and lyricists (King Diamond!) amongst us! If we hold a backer Bard's Tale-themed poetry contest, can we count on you two to participate?

    10. Simon Walker on

      So, I went for the 'PREMIER COLLECTOR'S EDITION - EARLY BARD' - does that mean I'm going to get to play, or is it wait more?

    11. John Drinkwater on

      ah ... so this is still a happening thing

    12. Missing avatar


      great, i love it, thumbs up

    13. Missing avatar

      Michael Brennock on

      Don't get me wrong, I love the poem used to start this post and I look forward to more rhyming schemes.

      That said, some of the middle lines switch to a 5-meter scheme when a 4-meter scheme is established at the beginning of the poem. might I suggest a couple revisions?

      To bind the north

      'ere songs of old

      do misers pass

      Again, I'm not a poetry writer, just a guy who recently read a book about it and learned just enough to be dangerous.

    14. Rivethead on

      Ok. Which of you Alpha backers is going to be the first to post video of the 20 minute alpha demo on YouTube so I can watch it? You have my thanks (in advance)

    15. John Henry II McMills Warrington on

      A Discord server for Bard's Tale IV would be great.

    16. Missing avatar

      Scott Moon on

      Is BETA access allowed to particulate and is there any new wallpapers?

    17. GroovyDad and the Slap Me Some Skin Kids on

      So still no update on space combat or the promised 360k floppy disk version.

    18. John Henry II McMills Warrington on

      Weirdly I read the limerick to the tune of 'At The Graves' by King Diamond, eg
      "in your mind you'll hear "them" sing
      Every night at the graves
      We have to leave before the dawn
      If not by the sun we will burn
      Three times before
      Did evil's lords ("in your mind you'll hear "them" sing)
      Descend on Skara Brae (Every night at the graves)

      And thrice did rise ("in your mind you'll hear "them" sing)
      Brave heroes, wise (Every night at the graves)
      To drive them all away

      Now comes a fourth
      To shackle the north (We have to leave before the dawn)
      And enslave the world of men (If not by the sun we will burn)

      Wouldn't 'arms' or even 'offence' be better than 'swords' in the second couplet?

    19. T.J. Brumfield on

      Is there any update on the Olde Skuul trilogy remaster?

    20. Icehawk101 on

      The song is amazing, as is the name!