[PREVIEW] Vampire Hunters: A Simple, But Addictive Concept

Announced two months ago, Vampire Huntersa small atypical retro-FPS, did not particularly catch our eye during its presentation on video.But after testing its demo, we were won over by this rogue-lite proposal in a hallway, taking up the concept of Vampire Survivor : weapons, vampires and improvements, to try to go a little further each time.The release in early access confirms it: the game is a very good surprise, without too much pretension, but very addictive.

Gender :Retro-FPS Rogue-lite | Developer: Gamecraft Studios |Publisher: Gamecraft Studios |Platform : Steam | Minimum recommended configuration: 2.4 GHz 4-core processor4GB RAM, Nvidia GTX 460 |Price : 9.75| Language :English | Early Access Release Date:07/26/2023 | Lifetime :About ten hours to beat the last boss


Preview made on a version provided by the publisher.

A mixture of ideas

Imagined when of a game jam within the Brazilian studio Gamecraft StudiosVampire Hunters is a mix of several concepts.First of all, and they don’t hide it, the developers have taken over what makes the salt of Vampire Survivor – a top-down shooter with tides of vampires – that is to say the rogue-lite and die & retry aspect.To put it simply, we start with a very simple weapon against a few rather weak opponents, and as we go, we grow in power, just like the vampires in front of us, who are also more and more numerous.Inevitably, death occurs prematurely, and you will have to earn gold to buy upgrades for your character.The other inspiration comes from boomer shooters as DOOM (1993), which is felt more on the side of the artistic direction.On the other hand, even though they feature their weapon hoarding mechanic as uniqueit is very close to what was proposed MOTHERGUNSHIP in 2018. We can have five, six, even ten weapons on the screen to unleash incredible fire on our enemies, which is completely stupid, but extremely enjoyable.Finally, the level-design is very limited, since it is restricted to a very long hallway, which we have to go through without stopping, because a kind of cart inevitably pushes us forward if we is tempted to drag on too long.The levels – two, with a variation each – end with a boss with a particular game design.Without breaking three legs of a duck, this phase turns out to be rather pleasant when you understand what to do.

Why is it good?

There is a lot of music available and it is generally of good quality.On the other hand, only one runs in a loop with each run, which can get a bit on the nerves after a while.

On paper, Vampire Hunters does not necessarily make you dream, but keyboard and mouse in hand, the experience immediately captivated me.So certainly, the weapons have no recoil, but the sound design compensates for this small lack of sensations, just like the profusion of visual effects when you start to accumulate several different weapons.Why not add a laser in addition to this mini-gun?It will go perfectly with this grenade launcher, this stake launcher and this holy water cannon!We can also get secondary weapons, which are added on our shoulders and which we can trigger separately from the rest.They are generally more powerful, and require a long reload time.Finally, we have “passive” weapons, such as automatic lightning bolts, a swarm of rats or a cat whose use I didn’t really understand.When you kill an enemy, there is a chance of getting an orb, allowing you to level up.You can then choose a new weapon or improve an existing weapon.It will be necessary to make the right choice to achieve assemblies as absurd as devastating and really very amusing.You can also collect gold, which you will use to improve lots of characteristics, once the run is over.We will increase its damage, reload speed and dozens of other things, such as the percentage chance of spawning gold or experience orbs.Challenges, such as completing such a level with such a modifier, or killing a certain number of enemies, grant new weapons, or even more gold, in order to buy even more improvements.And it’s terribly addictive!Especially since you don’t need to invest hours in a row: do you have ten minutes to spare before your next meeting?That’s more than the time you need to do a short run.

Vampire Hunters
What could be better than combining a flamethrower and a holy water cannon?

Adjustments and content to be expected

If, at the beginning, we go through the levels in a more or less fluid way, from a certain moment, as we recover a lot of experience, we can often be interrupted by leveling up.I hadn’t seen it, but it is possible to change this behavior by going to the settings: you will then have to pause the game yourself to choose your improvements.To avoid breaking the rhythm, it would therefore be more logical to put this mode by default.Another thing to review, the content: for the moment, four levels can be traversed, but there are really only two original ones, with in their variation, beefier enemies.The bosses remain the same.Again, nothing that can’t be improved before the final release.


If you want to see it all in motion, here are some excerpts from different points in the runs:

A good unpretentious little game

While it’s only in early access, Vampire Hunters is already a very addictive little rogue-lite retro-FPS.With its mechanism of accumulation of weapons and upgrades as absurd as enjoyable, we find ourselves trying the challenges to unlock even more weapons and abilities to smash these hordes of vampires.For the moment, a good ten hours will be necessary to defeat the last boss, but nothing prevents you from continuing to improve your character in an almost infinite way.We hope that other environments will be added and that some mechanics will be reviewed during this early access phase.In the meantime, for the price, we can already have a lot of fun, even if we only have a few minutes in front of us.

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