Review – Vampyr
Vampyr is a surprise delight. The action-RPG set in post World War I London, where you play as a recently-turned vampire – formerly Dr. Jonathan Reid – looking for answers and maybe a little revenge, provides a strong story and engaging combat mixed with a morals-testing leveling up system like none you’ve seen before.
As a vampire, players become more powerful by ingesting blood, but as Dr. Reid your goal is to save as many citizens as you can in a city ravaged by the Spanish flu and a series of unexplained murders blamed on a local myth. Feed on citizens to unlock skills faster, or try to keep as many alive as possible – even though that’ll make the game harder to beat?
There’s another twist though – the health of the region itself. Kill too many citizens in a district and it will fall into chaos, with all the ordinary people killed and monsters roaming the streets. Citizens might be a source of blood, but they’re also a source of information – albeit mainly about other citizens. Engaging in conversations and exploring the environment nets valuable intel on other non-playable characters (NPCs), which is vital in finishing both primary and side quests.
The game isn’t all talking and looking around, however, and your vampiric combat abilities will be put to the test multiple times in the game’s 15-20 hour span. Unlockable abilities that prove overpowering at first, especially the blood mist explosion, can fall by the wayside as the game wears on, so be willing to try new things and experiment with the skill tree. There’s also a wide variety of weapons to find, craft, and upgrade, helping to keep combat fresh.