Screenshot: Play Store
Vampire Survivors—which was technically released at the very end of 2021—is on a lot of people’s GOTY shortlists, partly because most people only got around to playing it in 2022, but mostly because it’s very good.
If you’re yet to play it, here’s the basic pitch:
Vampire Survivors, as the name suggests, is all about survival. It’s a pseudo-roguelike wherein you traverse an arena that rapidly begins to fill with all sorts of creepy monsters. Bats, skeletons, mummies, and giant praying mantises all relentlessly converge on your location from the edges of the screen. Luckily, the only thing you as the player need to concern yourself with is navigating this throng; your character auto-attacks with whatever gear you manage to acquire through level ups and item drops.
Previously available on PC, the game had a surprise release on mobile earlier today, turning up for sale on both the App Store and Play Store. While it’s desktop version is available on Steam for a cheap standalone price (its itch.io edition is free), these mobile editions are free to download.
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It’s funny that it’s now actually out on mobile, since our impressions of the game from earlier in the year specifically said:
Vampire Survivors’ true power, however, is in its near-constant dopamine rush. It feels like a mobile game without all the mobile game bullshit, or maybe one of those mindless Flash distractions you used to secretly pull up on your school’s study hall computers. Not only is clearing the screen of baddies satisfying, but every so often rare, stronger enemies reward you with a treasure chest that showers you in additional items and money for unlocks with a flashy sequence that rivals even the best loot boxes.