I remember the last time that I got jumped. For those of you who don’t know what getting jumped is urban dictionary defines it as “the act of being maliciously assaulted by two or a large number of individuals, usually physically but may be verbal.” The last time I got jump was in the third grade; two other kids came out of nowhere and pounced. It was Stewart and Philip. They were in the same grade as me and I would later come to find out that they jumped me for my Batman backpack. That’s some cold-blood shit isn’t it? They should have thought it through because they didn’t know how to fight. Despite the numbers advantage I ended up whooping them. Sadly I got in trouble just like they did. That was the last time I got jumped. At least until I played the game, Vampire Survivors.
The difference here is that this is a fight that I’d gladly participate in over and over again. I’m serious I haven’t been this hooked on a game since Civilization 6. In the same way that Civ 6 had me staying up late “saying one more turn” this game is having me say “I’ll quit after this last run.” So what is this game? Why is this game a must try? Why is this game such a good single player Experience?
Let’s dive into it.
Vampire Survivors is a bullet hell roguelike indie where you try to survive as long as you can against hordes of monsters. These monsters are the ones that continue to jump me. Unlike what happened with Stewart and Philip though, these ghost and ghouls often succeed in beating my ass.
In this game, you pick a character to play as. Each who have their own benefits and early starting weapon, and you’re dropped into a large map in what is essentially a single player horde mode. As you kill all the enemies that stand in your way, you grow more powerful. You try to last as long as you can until the reaper comes for you and ends your run at the 30 minute mark.
The Controls and Weapons:
Despite the simple controls and concept, this game is surprisingly deep. It features a progression system that grants you the choice on which weapons you want to level up in the run that you are in. The more you level up your weapons the more your killing power grows. Trust me; you’re going to need it because the enemies get progressively stronger.
Speaking of weapons the game gives you a nice variety to have in your arsenal. The variety helps to change your playstyle and keeps the gameplay fresh. The unique aspect of the gameplay is the fact that you aren’t in control of using or firing your weapons. They fire all on their own. Some weapons fire in a designated manner like in the direction that you are looking at and some fire at random enemies on the screen. The only thing you are in control of is choosing which weapons you want to use or upgrade when you level up during a run and the movement of your character. Taking the weapons control out of the players hands was a risky gamble, but one that pays off and helps the game really stand out. It’s impressive how fun this game is and you’re really just moving your character around.
Another aspect of the game that deserves a shout out is the games variety of maps. These maps force you to try out different strategies. For example, the dairy plant has traps that add a new obstacle for you to think about. In contrast, the forest is a large open area that you can roam in but it’s so big that it might take some time to make your way to a treasure chest. This level variety is another way that the game mixes it up and keeps the players from feeling any sense of staleness.
This game isn’t without its fault so let talk about the negatives.
Let’s be honest. Vampire Survivors looks rough. The game features 2D pixel art design that could have used more TLC. Some of the sprite characters are well designed and detailed while others feel generic and like they belong in another game. I really have to shout out the cool disintegration effect that happens when your enemies die.
Another aspect of the game that is a bit lackluster is its music. While it’s not bad it isn’t anything that memorable or stands out. It also doesn’t really amplify what is going on in the game. A banging soundtrack would have taken this game to the next level.
Overall/Should You play Vampire Survivors:
Overall Vampire Survivors is the perfect example of how the best things are often the simplest things. This game doesn’t have a lot of the complexities of other roguelike games. Instead it offers insanely fun and addicting gameplay that will have you saying “just one more run.” Vampire Survivors is one of the best games of 2022 and a game that you should definitely try out.