Why V Rising is Trending on Steam

By Shaan Khan

Screenshot Courtesy of Stunlock Studios on YouTube

Vampires have made their way back onto our menus of entertainment these past couple of weeks, with Marvel’s superhero film, Morbius, getting memed into oblivion and for all the wrong reasons.

Meanwhile, the gaming world has been a little kinder to our fictional jagged-tooth friends thanks to Stunlock Studios, a small game-dev team that combined hardcore survival gameplay with gothic-vampiric goodness in an online open-world game called V Rising.

At first glance, it’s not a game to create ‘shock’n’awe’ like the photorealistic Unreal Engine 5 projects being developed out there. However, you’re probably asking, why on earth is all your Steam friends list full of people playing V Rising then?!

Content Overload in a Condensed & Highly Accessible Package

Too often in the survival genre, we have indie dev teams prioritising graphics & animations over performance & content. You’re left feeling immersed for a while, until you grow bored with the barebones world at your disposal.

V Rising takes the opposite approach. Stunlock Studios focused their resources on gameplay & content that rivals the quality & depth you find with Triple-A titles. Graphics & animations have been limited to a standard that many PCs can run without running into performance issues.

 It’s fitting to call V Rising ‘the stylebender of gaming’ with its multi-faceted gameplay influenced by all corners of the gaming landscape.

Combat takes on the competitive, fast-paced action spirit of a MOBA similar to League of Legends. You’ve got a sprawling open world to explore like any good Adventure game. There’s loot, crafting, gear, mounts and boss battles; the recipe for any sound MMORPG. 

Battle it out with online players to conquer land like a Sid Mierer’s Civilization or Europa Universalis game. Then build your majestic castles to your heart’s delight where you can station & control your servants to have your own dark and messed up version of The Sims—the skies the limit with gaming influences in V Rising, but the icing on the cake has to be the survival gameplay.

A Refreshing Survival Experience

V Rising offers unique survival mechanics unseen elsewhere, thanks to the game’s thick Dracula accent. It’s a match made in hell, not heaven of course, combining brutally unforgiving survival elements with an eerily authentic vampire experience that takes inspiration from classic vampire lore linked to the mythical ways of Dracula.

While typical survival games have you feeding off animals and plants that you hunt, farm and harvest; V Rising makes humans your source for prey & livestock. You feed off blood to gain buffs/power-ups and different blood types offer specific advantages.

You can imprison humans in your castle by using ‘the kiss of a vampire’ ability to turn them into servants that you control to carry out tasks—creating a league of minions for yourself, letting you exercise power much differently to other survival games.

Daylight will threaten your survival, so you must avoid being out in the open or you will begin to take passive damage unless you find a special item that can protect you.

Some settlements will have garlic on display, so if you carelessly walk into them without strategising, you’ll start to slowly lose health.

It’s the definition of a ‘Thinking Person’s Game’ that pushes you to have greater sentiment for your means of survival and what you achieve in the game, knowing the difficulty that goes into accomplishing them. To reinforce this point, your mounts and lairs require maintenance, making them precious entities you provide care for and motivates you to progress in the game.

A Fun Assortment of Objectives

V Rising is rich in the variety of gear and abilities that you have many ways to possess; it’s a rare survival game where every player has the chance to stand out from the crowd with their unique character customisations and builds. The same applies to the player’s custom lairs, which can be expanded over time to give player’s a goal of progression.

Build & Conquer

Screenshot Courtesy of Stunlock Studios on YouTube

Your lairs/castles are your places of shelter, preparation and to recuperate after being out in the world trying to survive. You have workshops to craft items and storage to manage your items. Expanding your territory gives you easier access to these hubs, can accommodate your squad and lets you build upon your world power having your mini vampiric empire.

You can raid players’ lairs/castles to decrease their power, steal their loot, or expand onto their land. If you’re a fan of survival games like Rust & ARK, then this part of the game is meant for you.

The Blood of Bosses

Screenshot Courtesy of Stunlock Studios on YouTube

The world of V Rising is teaming with formidable creatures that you & friends can take on in epic boss battles. If you manage to secure victories, you can suck the blood from the defeated opponents to earn you special abilities that exist with you throughout the game.

You embark on this gruelling journey of a monster slayer to become the ultimate vampire in the world by upholding the most abilities. This avenue of gameplay also has its gothic, mystical twist. For instance, a particular boss battle has you fighting a werewolf. If successful, you acquire the power to transform into a werewolf yourself, adding a new element to your gameplay experience.


V Rising is a diligently crafted game comprised of many creative elements authentic to vampire lore. The more you dive deep into V Rising, the game continues to hand you new gameplay elements to spice up your experience, with an end product that has you exercising a great deal of creativity & thought into customisation, builds and strategies to tackle objectives.

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