Hunter: The Shadow Within (Dark Fantasy, 45K Words, UPDATED 04/03/23)

Hello, my friends. I’m J.R. Salazar and this WiP is my first attempt at writing an IF gamebook. I’ve been reading IF for a number of years now and I decided to make my own.

Hunter: The Shadow Within is a Dark Fantasy Interactive Novel set in a vicious medieval world, stripped of its magic by gods who abandoned it, with mysteries to uncover that many would kill to know and the few who do know would kill to keep them secret.

There are twelve planned chapters. I plan on updating every month. I’m shooting for 80.000-100.000 words, so as you can tell, this is a medium scale project.

Chapter 1: 11K words. Complete.
Chapter 2: 16K words. Complete.
Chapter 3: 10K words. Complete.
Chapter 4: 8K words. Complete.
Chapter 5: Under Construction.


The Blood Temple of Kroathar is an ancient and forgotten place, deep in the cursed forests of the realm. It is said that a powerful sword lies within its depths - a sword that could turn the tide of any war in the favor of whoever possesses it. So, the nobles request the help of a hunter to escort them to the bosom of blood magic.

In this adventure, you’ll play the role of such a hunter, one of the last of your kind, afflicted with a strange illness that brings you nearer to death’s door every passing day.

This very uncommon offer might be just the chance you needed to change your fate, avoid an early passing and know your origins.

In this journey, challenges will be confronted to get to the depths of the truth and alliances will be forged against the heat of battle with your companions


  • Play as male or female; gay or straight.
  • Marry into nobility, romance the heir of an Archduchy or his sister; explore passions with an alchemist, or forbidden love with a holy knight.
  • Customize your character’s appearance, personality, and Hunting Path.
  • Make decisions that will shape the Kingdom of Eudhaymon for years to come.
  • Uncover secrets about magic that humankind was never meant to know.
  • Discover the mystery of your disease and unearth your dark past.
  • Lord Arthur of Euphyristos

The man is very tall and muscular, with a face that seems to have been chiseled from stone, except for the scar on his face which runs across one eye and cheekbone. His hair is a burnished, dark, glossy black, and his eyes are emerald green and cold as ice. He proudly dons his knightly armor built in intricate detail by the best craftsmen in all of Eudhaymon.

He has led men into battle from the front, both in war and in his schemes, and he’s known to be an inspirational leader, loyal to his allies, but ruthless to his enemies. He has a strong sense of justice and respects those who fight for their ideals. He’s bold, and ambitious, although his emotions sometimes flare, but he mostly keeps them under control.

  • Lady Aella of Euphyristos

Lady Aella is tall for a woman and is often dressed in the finest silks and velvets, her auburn hair is usually drawn into a simple braid. The Lady’s eyes are green and flecked with gold, mischief twinkling within the depths of those mysterious orbs. Her lips, soft and full, form an enchanting secret-keeping smile, the rest of her features are as sharp as a razor’s edge.

Lady Aella is passionate about making the world a better place than the one she was born into, a firecracker of a woman who possesses the confidence of a queen. With a wicked sense of humor that often catches others off guard, Lady Aella has a relentless and cunning side, capable of carrying out whatever task she sets her mind to. Along with her brother, she’s a visionary, and she sees a bright future for the lands of Eudhaymon and its people.

  • Lucia/Lucius, the Alchemist

They own an extremely rare pair of golden eyes, set in a serene face that many would accuse of beauty, accentuated by pointy ears and a sharp nose. Their hair is the color of gold, and it’s shiny as if it’s made from pure sunlight.

Mostly calm but commanding, but something’s concealed under intelligence, and resourcefulness. They’re not one for idle chatter or gossip, and are quick to judge others. They deviate from society’s norms, disregarding conformism and orthodoxy. They tirelessly pursue their goals, regardless of how difficult they might be, and will go to any length to fulfill them.

  • Alayn/Alayne, Holy Knight of Kaine

Their long hair and armor are both pure white. They’re tall, athletic with a toned frame, and slanted, purple eyes that tell of many horrors witnessed. They own a strong, square jaw, full lips, and brows almost always set into a subtle snarl of anger. The narrow forehead accentuates their proud look.

Their expression and posture reflect a quiet, calm demeanor and sense of duty. The weight of their duties, and worries about the state of the realm weigh heavily upon them. Beneath this stoic exterior, there is a strong, iron core of grit and determination. They’ve tried to maintain their honor and faith intact in a vile, lawless age of corruption and darkness.

Content Warning

Blood and gore, dismemberment, violence, strong language, insults.

I’d like feedback on stats, choices, dialogue and prose. English is not my native language, so feel free to comment about anythng that gets your attention. Thank you.


Oooo blood magic. This sounds pretty awesome


Hunter’s Dream?

Beast Hunter?

Temple revolving around Blood?

Fear the Old Blood?


Can’t help but react with a ‘why not both?’

As for the demo, it’s a bit early to judge but I’m interested so far.


Ooh this is the one from Interest check thread, right? I got that bloodborne vibe.


This wip seems interesting. I’ll be keeping an eye on this

1 Like

It got me “The Witcher” vibes, futher more with the stoic choices


Yeah, I’m very excited to be writing this!

Sanguine Sanctum!

That’s great to hear!

Bloodborne is one of my inspirations, indeed, but I didn’t post anything there.

That’s one of my inspirations too. The Last Wish and Sword of Destiny are great reads.


Maybe it’s only me and maybe it is only because I listen to Japanese flute music I feel more drawn to old Japanese legends xD

The Witcher vibe is more accurate without me listening to Japanese flute music xD
I really am interested in your game :smiley: maybe if you could would you please place a save system as well?

I sadly get an error message when I want to put in my own name / the name showed for the MC.
chap_1 line 320: Invalid indent? Expected an #option here, not *set


That’s fixed now.

Thanks. I’ll add dashingdon’s save system when Chapter 2 is out.


MC: “Oh, blood magic, sacrifices. Sounds like my type of place, why don’t you drag a few peasants there, just in case…”

Me: I VOLUNTEER AS PEASANT! Take me take me take me! :raising_hand_woman: :bangbang: :exclamation:

Superb demo, definitely interested in finding out more about both the crypt and the MC’s strange condition. I mean. . . If it’s bad enough for a beast to throw up, then MC sounds like the best mosquito repellent.

I will just stick myself close by and hope there won’t be any bites, vampires or otherwise. :woman_vampire:


By the Gods, fear it, Laurence


This looks very interesting and I hope it gets updated regularly.


Very promising

1 Like

The plot gives me Witcher vibes I love it


I like it i wad sad when demo ended rewlly good keepnup the awesome work

1 Like

Well, the choice of RO is not a choice of sexuality :slight_smile: unless choosing to romance either heir of Archduchy or his sister locks MC’s attraction to either men or women?
That would suck, I’m still not over SoH’s bi erasure :rofl:

Btw do you plan to make any social media or will you stick to thread only for now?


No, I don’t plan on locking MC attraction at all. You’ll be free to pursue whatever ROs you want, there’s more about this in Chapter 2.

Thread only for now but depending on the demand, I might create a Discord server or a Tumblr page, that’s more likely to happen when I release Chapter 3.

Thank you all for playing this and taking the time to comment. Chapter 2 is coming in a few days.


I just finished the demo, and I like it. I’m getting so much witcher vibes from it. I’m going to keep an eye on this story and can’t wait to read more. Keep up the good work.


A hoonter must hoont, even in a dream.

I accidentally mixed two different quotes, but I don’t care, I’m not fixing it