I admit, I hadn’t had the opportunity to experiment Vampire Survivors upon its release on Steam (or even earlier on mobile) and when I saw it appear recently on Xbox Game Pass I labeled it with a certain condescension.
As the proud holder of the “most powerful console in the world” (add TM as desired) to see a game in pixel art instead of in ultra 4k with ray tracing and various guns, it makes my mouth twist in a grimace.
In short, I thought that I would never even start it. Then, by pure chance, I happened to start it on a smartphone, taking advantage of the cloud Game Pass. I had never done it: 2 games were enough to realize that I was totally addicted to it. The amount of achievements to unlock is impressive, 142. I’ve never seen anything like this for a base game, yet I threw myself into it.
Here, if I can use a litmus test on how passionate I am about a game, it is this: if when I’m not playing I look for information about him and guides and trivia perhaps on a wiki dedicated to it, then it means that the title has hit the mark.
Vampire Survivors belongs to this category.
Impossible to find a list of priorities, I’ll throw them in no particular order: it’s damned funny, and this, sorry if it’s too little for an entertainment product.
It’s irreverent: have you noticed the names? Characters, weapons, internships… everything shouts at the Italian trash pop culture. I could mention so many elements, but I bring to your attention only the character Thelma sofa. The genius is all here: taking things that we don’t Italians understand very well and dressing them with a patina in English sauce. I’d give anything to see the faces of Americans struggling to understand what the hell things they read on screen mean.
Because the bonus level is called Molise and has no monsters? Why does combining that weapon called Garlic (garlic) and the life bonus called Pummarola, we get a superweapon called Soul Eater? (personally I would have preferred the name Marinara, but that’s another story). And so on.
I realized I haven’t talked about the game yet: Vampire Survivors it’s a rogue-lite in which we face hordes of unlikely fantasy enemies (yes, there’s also the ignottauro) in a limited time, during which we will have to build our build, made up of a basic character and weapon evolutions, waiting for the 30 minute mark, when the final boss of the level will appear.
It’s no joke: the hordes of monsters grow with incredible speed and if we don’t build the build carefully from the very first levels, reaching the end with a sufficiently armored character can become a feat. To be honest, even getting to the end can be tough in the more advanced levels.
They are in the base game 21 different characters, each with unique characteristics and skins, and 13 stages between normal levels and bonus areas. Game after game we will discover the infinity of things, details, and hidden gems. Replayability, therefore, is ensured not only in the most avid and competitive gamers, but in all those who can’t wait to find out what else is hidden under the surface: what mysteries will the “yellow sign” open? How does that particular weapon evolve? Who is hiding in the coffins scattered throughout the levels and protected by garrisons of formidable monsters?
Legacy of the Moonspell
If all this is not enough, know that the first DLC has just been released: Legacy of the Moonspell.
This content adds a level with a very original design, very different from all the others, crammed with a quantity of monsters and yokai directly inspired by the fantastic culture of the rising sun.
Not only that: in the face of the additional level, we find well 8 new characters to unlock and even 13 new weapons (also to evolve).
If you want to get an idea of the richness of the game, know that the trophies thanks to the DLC amount to 159! I really don’t think I’ve ever seen such a wealth of content in such an (apparently) trivial game.
In short: the work of ponle soft, of the century Luca Galante (developer of Roman origin who moved to London about ten years ago) is monumental, in the details; successful because it starts from simple and tested mechanisms: a bit like PAC-MAN, the player can only move the character in four directions and then make strategic choices to enrich his gaming experience.
The good thing is that Vampire Survivors it requires no mental effort: it can be played anywhere even for games made in passing, while waiting for the arrival of public transport or while having a coffee break. The only real problem is that one game leads to another, then another, then another…
I can’t help but wonder what other creatures will populate the roster of hunters in the future, what other levels will we discover, how many new weapons will we have to upgrade before we find the ultimate Vampire.
Nerdy in short
Vampire Survivors and its Legacy of the Moonspell DLC are the Italian rogue-lite to be discovered.