My obsession with Vampire Survivors began only a few short weeks ago. During the initial release I had heard all of the hype and excitement, but I was holding out — as I tend to do — for the game to release on one of my preferred consoles — PlayStation or Nintendo Switch.
During The Game Awards 2022, a mobile version was announced to shadow drop the next morning — plus, it was completely FREE. I immediately downloaded the Vampire Survivors to my iPhone that next morning. For a few weeks, the game remained untouched on my home screen. When I finally decided to play during the first days of 2023, I couldn’t put it down.
I now had a third objective each time I unlocked my iPhone:
- 1 | Check Facebook,
- 2 | Check Instagram, and
- 3 | Play a quick round of Vampire Survivors.
After beginning my initial vampire journey I knew that I needed to play on the Switch. I was immediately disappointed to learn that Vampire Survivors had not yet reached the Nintendo eShop (and still hasn’t). I have heard of so many people enjoying this game on their Steam Decks, which I do not yet own. I did however purchase Vampire Survivors on Steam (since it works on both PC and Mac).
I’m not normally a big WASD keyboard and mouse gamer. Even on PC, I mostly stick to using my Xbox controller. Still, WASD works better than touch controls in mobile games, because even if the touch controls are fluid and smooth, you are still covering part of the screen with your fingers — and that can get in the way of gameplay with certain games. I’m sure a phone controller adapter (like the Backbone) could come in handy for this game.
Playing on the PC (or Mac) with just one hand is quite convenient (using the WASD keys). My right hand is free to do whatever it needs to do. I can easily drink my coffee or eat a snack while playing this game on PC/Mac.
After switching from vertical to horizontal orientation on my iPhone, I immediately went back to vertical since it feels more comfortable using one hand. In horizontal orientation I feel the need to use both hands for fear of dropping my iPhone.
Vampire Survivors is an extremely retro-inspired game in so many ways — the graphics, controls, music and everything else. Some of the gameplay even reminds me of another retro-inspired game I spent a lot of time with last year, Loop Hero. Both games rely heavily on an automatic gameplay loop.
In Loop Hero you equip the best gear in order to defeat your enemy as your player repeatedly makes their way around the board. In Vampire Survivors, you control your movements, but different attacks and abilities happen on their own, based on a timer. It’s the player’s job to make sure the attacks hit the enemy at the perfect moment.
After purchasing Vampire Survivors on Steam, I noticed extra levels that may be unlocked. I did purchase the game with some extra DLC pack, so perhaps the DLC is not yet available on mobile. Either way there are many reasons why I would rather play this game on PC or Mac. The main ones being the controls and the extra content.
I did notice that everytime I die on mobile Vampire Survivors, I’m asked if I’d like to watch an ad to continue my run. I do like that ads have been incorporated in a way that you only have to watch if you choose to, but I still haven’t watched an ad. I just take the death, and start over. Since I don’t have any “extra lives” like this on the other version, it doesn’t feel right to do it on the mobile version.
There are many games that I would like to play in bed as I fall asleep, but are just too loud. I love playing Hades in bed, but the intensity and all the button mashing make it a very loud game. Why Vampire Survivors will work as a nighttime/bedtime game is because it’s only based on movement. I can get away with only using my joy con stick and not making extra noise that will wake up my sleeping girlfriend.
This article began as an email to Poncle. An email about my new love for Vampire Survivors, as well as the question of when will it come to the Nintendo Switch. I turned this into a post because I wanted to share my passion for this game with others. Also, by putting it out into the universe, perhaps the game will be making its way onto the Nintendo Switch very soon…