Oh damn, do I love me some Vampire Survivors. Secrets? Sorted. Unlocks? All of them too. Every single character? I’ve got them too mate, it’s a done deal. So, of course, when a new Vampire Survivors: Legacy of the Moonspell DLC finally rolls along onto mobile, I’m going to be one of the first to leap from my crypt and hand over the mere 99 cents for a copy. Vampire Surviving is what I do.
For context, the Vampire Survivors: Legacy of the Moonspell DLC has been out on the Xbox version of the game for a few months now, offering a new map, characters, weapons, and more to the casual roguelike. Now, Moonspell is finally here on mobile, offering hours of content in a game that has already stolen so much of my life that it’s essentially the Butch Cassidy to my banked hours of free time. Still, I’m more than happy to donate a few more.
The Legacy of the Moonspell DLC package takes you to Mt. Moonspell, a snowy region that is seemingly set in the mountains of folklore Japan. From the off, Mt. Moonspell is a challenger for Vampire Survivor’s best map. It’s far more dynamic than anything we’ve seen so far, with discernably different areas to explore. From the Shinto-style temples to the alpine wilderness to the caves infested with trolls and monsters, it all feels very new and very exciting.
If you know your way around Vampire Survivors, you can appreciate that the first job on arriving at Mt. Moonspell is to hunt down the ‘?’ icon on the map, find the coffin, and release a new playable character. As we mentioned earlier, with the dynamic nature of this map, it feels like the first proper adventure level in Vampire Survivors, a possible answer to those who think that the game leans too far towards the casual genre and doesn’t do enough to engage players. Trust me, when you find the goblin grottos, you’re going to need to engage like all hell trying to escape if you’re not prepared for the mighty monsters waiting in the shadows.
Of course, the big draw of Vampire Survivors is the variety of new characters and weapons. With thirteen new weapons, including evolutions, and eight new Vampire Surviving heroes, there’s plenty of experimenting to do while finding the best builds for each. The new weapons aren’t cop-outs, either. Each creature-killing tool is its own thing and lends to possible build varieties. From Babi-Onna’s mirage robe that creates time-stopping spectres to Menya Moonspell’s sideways exploding projectiles, each new weapon slots into the game without feeling forced or like the developer is desperately looking for new ideas.
The new characters and evolutions add replayability not just to this map, but to engaging with the wider game. Vampire Survivors has always been about builds for me, and with the 13 new options, there are even more creative options for coming up with new build concepts. For example, McCoy-Oni, a new overgrown tanuki character, comes with a weapon that expands the area-of-effect of abilities every few seconds, which you can use alongside garlic and other AoE attacks to create a swelling forcefield around your character. That’s just one of the countless build options available with the new DLC.
Another highlight of the Moonspell experience is the boss that arrives at the 25-minute mark. The Orochimario, the boss in question, is a terrifying hydra with an extending neck, capable of reaching you without stepping into any AoE. This big bad adds another layer to the DLC, pointing towards more inventive bosses in the future outside of the reaper archetype we’ve already seen so much of or just oversized regular enemies.
In terms of performance – and it’s worth mentioning this, as on arriving on mobile Vampire Survivors had a glitch that locked you out of a character unlock – there are no mistakes this time. Even in an endless run with countless enemies careening towards you, most modern mobiles should be able to muster the processing power without a problem.
For me, the most exciting aspect of this first wave of Vampire Survivors DLC is what it means for the future. This map, more than any other, promotes exploration while offering a variety of opponents in different locations. That might not sound like a big deal for most games, but Vampire Survivors was already pretty incredible. It’s like giving Blade’s iconic sword to Dracula. Sure, he doesn’t need it, but it doesn’t hurt to be even stronger.
So, if you’re thinking about coughing up the measly sum to jump back out of the coffin, I wholeheartedly recommend it. For the price especially, this offering adds hours of new content, while giving you a new way to engage with the maps you already know like the back of your hand. As for me, I’ll be monster-mashing my way through Mt. Moonstone for months to come, eagerly anticipating the next Vampire Survivors DLC I can dig my fangs into. Now, where’s that garlic?
For more thoughts on the latest titles, check out our Bayonetta Origins review, Paranormasight Switch review, and Fatal Frame: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse Switch review. Or, if you want to learn more about the future of mobile gaming, see our Samsung interview.
Vampire Survivors lauds over all other mobile titles as the most engaging casual game, and the Legacy of the Moonspell DLC only adds to this. The new location is dynamic, while fresh weapons and characters offer new ways to get creative with builds. Considering the price point, we couldn’t ask for anything more.