Will Vampire Survivors Ever Have an Actual Vampire? We Asked the Creator

Will Vampire Survivors Ever Have an Actual Vampire? We Asked the Creator

The success of the 2022 rogue-like “Vampire Survivors” surprised everyone, but no one more than its creator, Luca ‘poncle’ Galante.

Galante began developing Vampire Survivors while unemployed in 2020, taking inspiration from the mobile game Magic Survival and Galante’s past experience developing eye-catching graphics for slot machines. He never intended for Vampire Survivors to make it big – he just wanted to do something fun and manage a small community around him.

Vampire Survivors launched in early access in December of 2021. Now, almost exactly a year later, it’s seen a massive simultaneous Steam player pickup, a full release, DLC, a mobile version that secured it over a million downloads in a week, critical acclaim, and a Game Awards nomination for Best Debut Indie Game.

Galante has previously been interviewed about the surprise success of Vampire Survivors at launch, and months later, he tells IGN that his continued appreciation is “just as unexpected all these months as it was initially.” His sales have allowed him to start a company and hire others to help him work on Vampire Survivors as well as other possible future projects. And together they’ve achieved his personal goals for Vampire Survivors much faster than he originally expected, including bringing it to more platforms and adding more content. In fact, version 1.0 – launched in October – contains more than double the content that Galante was originally planned for.

Award nominations and wins are Galante’s latest successes. He’s excited, of course, if he seems a little displeased that his project ended up on the same stage as games like Elden Ring and God of War.

“It was incredible to be nominated for The Game Adverts [sic] alongside all other appropriate developers. For the past year, every time I thought we had reached the peak of absurdity, there was something new on top of the previous thing.

“While for me it is very difficult to believe this [Vampire Survivors] it’s worth all the attention, I’m glad it’s getting it mostly because it shows that literally anyone can make it, and so hopefully it will encourage more indie developers to keep pushing their projects. I’m not saying this out of my ‘good heart’, I’m saying this out of selfishness: I want to see more and more Celestes, Undertales, Powerwash Simulators, Wandersongs and Short Hikes getting the spotlight they deserve!”

I want to see more Celestes, Undertales, Powerwash Simulators, Wandersongs and Short Hikes get the spotlight they deserve.

But amid all that success, Galante is still at a loss to explain exactly why people love vampire survivors as much as they do.

“I have no idea, which makes it really scary!” he says. “Since the beginning, I’ve tried not to look at the numbers or what’s happening online specifically to not get too upset, I kept my head down and continued to work on the game and the company, focusing almost entirely on player feedback . on Discord and the Steam forums. The one thing that I’m sure has made a difference though is our community managers who did and are doing an incredible job of keeping communication open with players!”

He later adds that he thinks the growing Steam Deck playing audience helped Vampire Survivors’ success — though it’s not the only factor — because of its pick-up-and-play nature…and it doesn’t hurt that it suits the Steam Report of the deck view perfectly.

Vampire Survivors just received its first paid DLC, Legacy of the Moonspell, adding thirteen new weapons, eight characters, and a new stage. Galante says that while he initially had no plans for DLC, the early access success of Vampire Survivors made him want to give something back to players. His idea for DLC then stemmed from his memories of playing Final Fantasy Tactics and Valkyrie Profile years ago and wanting to pay a small amount of money for more stages or characters, perhaps getting a demo disc with a magazine subscription.

“So, as a gamer, I’m all for the idea of ​​being able to keep getting content for the games I love, but too often these days I feel like DLC is built around making money rather than good service for players ,” he says. “Having a negative bias towards DLC, I was very hesitant to try to make one, but I also couldn’t keep adding stuff to [Vampire Survivors] for fun while having company to think about. And so, here comes the DLC! My biggest hope is that we’ve managed to get a fair deal for the players and they’ll like it, that’s something that I, as a player, would be happy to see in the shops.”

Vampire Survivor Screens

I spoke with Galante shortly after the release of Vampire Survivors on Xbox and mobile, so naturally I was curious about other platforms, like Switch (which he previously teased could be in the works) and PlayStation. However, he was coy about whether or not we’ll see one of these releases in the future.

“We’re always thinking about what’s next and generally go where the flow takes us, the beauty of being independent is that we can do almost anything as long as everyone on the team is on board, he says. “Unfortunately, I’m not allowed to specifically say about other platforms as our marketing team might contradict me… in fact, who cares, let me tell you that one day I hope to launch on Vita!”

Galante was equally coy about plans for future games – right now the focus is entirely on Vampire Survivors, which, despite the name and updates and DLC, still doesn’t feature a single vampire.

Will it ever happen?

“Our marketing team said we can’t answer that, but who cares…” says Galante, later adding that he loves the game’s marketing team. “The problem is that our legal team said the same thing; also, what is a vampire?”

Rebekah Valentine is a news reporter for IGN. You can find her on Twitter @duckvalentine.

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