Test of Vampire Survivors on PC by jeuxvideo.com

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The least we can say is that Vampire Survivors is a title that went somewhat unnoticed when it was released last December. However, this rogue-lite has had unexpected success in its last weeks, thanks in particular to the exposure offered by many French streamers. But what is behind this new phenomenon of Twitch?

At first glance, Vampire Survivors is a small indie game like there are thousands on Steam. However, behind these frankly dated graphics, hides in reality a game with a simple but very addictive principle. A principle so effective that the title records today more than eight thousand positive ratings on Steam, but also entered the top 50 most watched games on Twitch the last days. To explain such a craze, it suffices to look at the central mechanics of the title: the feeling of power it provides.

A gameplay loop that shines with its simplicity

Vampire Survivors: What is the addictive rogue-lite that is a hit on Twitch worth?

But let’s go back to the beginning. Vampire Survivors is therefore a top-down rogue-lite in which the player must survive interrupted waves of enemies in an arena. Regardless of your progress, Death will end your game after thirty minutes. To defend themselves, each of the eight characters available has a basic weapon which attacks automatically at regular intervals as well as a passive bonus of its own. Keyboard or joystick in hand, the player is therefore only in charge of moving his avatar. When an enemy is defeated, most of the time he leaves behind an experience crystal which once accumulated allows you to level up. At each new level, the player is presented with three options that allow him to acquire a new weapon, an improvement or a passive bonus. In total, the game features 24 weapons and 14 power-ups, which makes for a number of possible combinations. The challenge of a game is therefore to become powerful enough to survive and see the end of a run.

Vampire Survivors: What is the addictive rogue-lite that is a hit on Twitch worth?

Rogue-lite obliges, death is not synonymous with failure in Vampire Survivors. Indeed, during a run, you can accumulate gold in different ways: either by destroying chandeliers, or after defeating a boss who drops a chest behind him containing money and a bonus. Back to the main menu, this gold allows you both to unlock new characters, but also to improve their characteristics permanently for all your next runs. Finally, the game also includes two different arenas, the forest and the library, each having a particular structure, the second being narrower than the first with obstacles. Each of these stages also has a Hyper mode which increases the speed and the number of enemies, but also the gold collected.

Vampire Survivors: A run that ends prematurely

Vampire Survivors: What is the addictive rogue-lite that is a hit on Twitch worth?Vampire Survivors: What is the addictive rogue-lite that is a hit on Twitch worth?

Did you say Castlevania?

Vampire Survivors: What is the addictive rogue-lite that is a hit on Twitch worth?

Despite its very simple gameplay which only requires moving your character, it is clear that the title’s gameplay loop works particularly well. By this permanent power gain and its transcription on the screen by the hordes of enemies that we defeat with great ease, Vampire Survivor is typically the game genre for which one quickly develops the “last little game” syndrome. But if you know, this famous sentence that we say to ourselves to try to convince ourselves that we are going to stop playing at the end of the next run when we know very well that the desire trying new builds is always stronger. This feeling of always wanting to play more is due in particular to the game’s ability to display an impressive number on the screen. Indeed, it is not uncommon to succeed in defeating several tens of thousands of monsters with each run with increasing ease, which makes the experience as pleasant to watch as it is to play.

Vampire Survivors: What is the addictive rogue-lite that is a hit on Twitch worth?

But obviously, the first element that strikes when you launch the game for the first time, it’s his very strong inspiration from Castlevania. Whether in the characters (the Belpaese instead of the Belmont), the enemies (medusa heads, bats, werewolves…) and especially in the weapons (the whole arsenal is there: whip, knife, axe, cross, holy water, bible etc …), we really find all the characteristic elements of the Konami franchise. Besides, we could also say that the graphics are inspired by the NES period of the license since the visual aspect is clearly not the greatest strong point of the title. Indeed, all the action of the title takes place in very simple arenas, in which pixel art sprites come alive and that’s it. On the other hand, we can also say that this minimalist is part of the charm of the experience. But on the other hand, it’s hard to defend the interface, which isn’t very good.

Vampire Survivors: What is the addictive rogue-lite that is a hit on Twitch worth?

However, let’s agree, this visual aspect is very easily understandable when you look at the very low price of the game, i.e. €2.39. For this reason, we can forgive its basic graphics, as well as its lack of content (for the moment) with only two stages and a 100% which can be obtained in about ten hours. But besides, it must be recognized that the developers are very active and that they bring patches every week as well as new minor content to the game. For example, if the game is currently only available in English , it should be translated into five languages ​​by the end of January, and therefore possibly into French.

Conclusion

Points forts

  • A simple principle, but devilishly addictive
  • An exhilarating sense of power
  • A game at a very low price (2.39€)…
  • Characters with different approaches
  • Perfect for short gaming sessions (30 minutes max)

Weak points

  • Graphically very simple
  • Not a very pretty interface
  • …which leads to some sacrifices like its lack of internships

By its simple gameplay, Vampire Survivors is not a title that will revolutionize video games. However, its very addictive principle will captivate you for hours. Thanks to a feeling of continuous rise in power, the title manages to constantly capture the attention of the player who has to face the impressive and interrupted waves of enemies, even if it means not seeing anything on the screen. A principle so effective that it manages to make people forget its very simple graphics, as well as its somewhat limited content, which can be explained in particular by the very low price of the game. All that remains is to wait for the next updates to see if the title will succeed in definitively making a name for itself in the rogue-lite genre.

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The least we can say is that Vampire Survivors is a title that went somewhat unnoticed when it was released last December. However, this rogue-lite has had unexpected success in its last weeks, thanks in particular to the exposure offered by many French streamers. But what is behind this new…

The least we can say is that Vampire Survivors is a title that went somewhat unnoticed when it was released last December. However, this rogue-lite has had unexpected success in its last weeks, thanks in particular to the exposure offered by many French streamers. But what is behind this new…

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