Minutes to Midnight - spies in a modern cold war

Minutes to Midnight - Release 1.0
After three years of development and playtesting, Minutes to Midnight (formerly 5 Minutes to Midnight) is now officially released at https://soliver.itch.io/minutes-to-midnight

There have been major changes compared to the early version that was released over a year ago. In addition to numerous balancing and design differences, you can also expect a fully layouted book, filled with artworks by Stefan Stuck and Yoz.

The game should be available to anyone who has paid for the early access “pay what you want” version. If it is not available to you, please contact me and I will provide you with a code. Playbooks and sheets are free for everyone. I hope you enjoy the product.

Thanks to all the early supporters who enabled this game to exist. Your support throughout 2020 has been a huge motivational boost.

Minutes to Midnight is a game powered by Blades in the Dark about a crew of spies, trying to disrupt the balance of power in a modern cold war. They will have to stand strong in the face of their vicious opposition and handle a fragile web of untrustworthy informants, devious intrigues and deadly lies.

We play to find out if our agents can thrive in the cutthroat world of espionage. While the public may never know about their impact, their actions shape the political landscape and outcome of conflict. Will the players prevent the outbreak of a global disaster and use their influence to create a better future? Will they attempt to send the opposing bloc into a turmoil and establish a lasting hegemony? Or will their actions lead the world down a path of war and nuclear destruction?

  • a system for creating your own alternative history, political landscape, the goals of your factions and the international crises your players will face.
  • new playbooks and mechanics (for example: intel, the doomsday clock, playbooks like the Uniform, the Trenchcoat, the Uniform or the Tux) for your players, characters and crew.
  • modified rules for pay-out, downtime and entanglements, which tie into the doomsday clock and crisis system.
  • a toolbox to create your own modern cold war Berlin.
  • full artwork by Stefan Struck (A Fistful of Darkness) and yoz
  • around 140 pages of unique content, 6 playbooks

In an alternative present, the cold war between the Soviet Union and the NATO States is still ongoing. For more than seventy years, the world has been entrenched behind ideological borders, stuck in a state of mistrust and fear of mutual annihilation. With each passing decade, new proxy wars, suppressed uprisings and manipulated elections are added to the history books.

The cold war is a conflict largely fought in the realm of espionage, hidden from the public eye. Here, covert action is considered a silver bullet – a third way between disastrous nuclear wars and diplomatic helplessness. And so, spies have become the linchpin in a grand machinery of intrigues and plots, run by agencies that continually try to expand their own power. These intelligence agencies have evolved into massive behemoths: deep states that avoid democratic control and public oversight. Their network of spies and informants spans the globe and their surveillance does not exclude their own citizens. They are puppeteers who manipulate the truth and shape the perception of a lingering foreign threat only they can keep at bay.

Now the world is facing another dire crisis and these organizations are in a rush to exploit it for their own needs. But this time, the status quo will finally change – for better or for worse.

I have opened a new topic because I could not figure out how to edit the title of the old thread: https://community.bladesinthedark.com/t/5-minutes-to-midnight-espionage-action-set-in-an-ongoing-cold-war/1109


This looks great! Gonna dive into it now.


Picking this up immediately. What a cool build.


Aw hell yeah, this looks slick. As a fellow explorer in the realm of espionage-based FitD games, colour me intrigued :eyes:

The setting creation tools especially are extremely cool. Love to see more of these flexible toolboxes for building gameable Forged in the Dark settings cropping up.


Thank you! Picked up your games as well, they look very cool.

Glad you like the toolbox. The modular setting / berlin generation has always been a highlight during playtesting. Each round felt very different.


(hastens off to snag this for use, abuse, and comparison with Cold Shadows)

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