Our sixth and last editor’s choice leading up to GAAD and the Diamond Award is Vampire Survivors, chosen by Josh.
When I was at DICE this year, I was extremely surprised to see this little indie game take home Action Game of the year over contenders like Bayonetta 3 and Sifu. When I got home from that event, I checked Steam, and for 5 dollars, I figured I’d take a chance. I have never gotten so much value and fun out of such an inexpensive game.
Vampire Survivors by Poncle is one of the best indie games I’ve ever played. It’s a reverse bullet hell style where players take on the role of one of dozens of distinct characters and they have to avoid waves of enemies while their weapons constantly fire and they have to pick up new equipment to take on ever increasing hordes of monsters. I’m not too familiar with the genre, so I was surprised at how simple yet addicting the gameplay was.
As many readers will know, I often describe a good game that isn’t accessible as “worth the struggle”, but that’s not the case for Vampire Survivors. Vampire Survivors is one of the simplest games I’ve ever controlled, and yet the complexity of different builds and completing specific objectives make every playthrough unique, and the fact that each playthrough is only around 30 minutes makes it very easy to pick up and put down.
Although the reliance on Final Fantasy style strobing animation may be problematic for those that are prone to seizures, I didn’t notice a problem with these, but it definitely is something you should be aware of if you pick this up. But that is literally the only negative about Vampire Survivors. I can wholeheartedly recommend this game to any disabled player looking for an easy to play retro style game. Thanks to its complexity of gameplay, great value, and a re-playability factor that’s off the charts, it was easy to pick it as my favorite game of 2022.