Better Late Than Never: Reviewing the blood-soaked game Vampyr


With a ton of amazing games that were released last year, we finally got the chance to play Dontnod Entertainment’s Vampyr, but did it survive our critique?

Still a better love story than Twilight. The End….I’m just kidding.

Between the release of Call of Cthulhu, Red Dead Redemption 2, and Resident Evil 2, I have barely had any time to play other games and I finally got the chance to sit down and indulge in Vampyr, the blood-soaked story of vampire doctor, Jonathon Reid.

I hadn’t read any reviews or watched any gameplay, so I went into this game truly blind to what the story was, how the graphics were and how smooth the gameplay mechanics would be. I turned out to be equally pleasantly surprised and filled with a furious anger. Let me explain, but first, what even is Vampyr?

Image courtesy of Dontnot Entertainment/Focus Home Interactive

Vampyr is a third-person action-RPG developed by Dontnod Entertainment and published by Focus Home Interactive. Focus Home Interactive has published some really good titles like The Council, Telltale’s season one and two of The Walking Dead and A Plague Tale: Innocence. Dontnot Entertainment may also sound familiar because they are the developer responsible for Life is Strange 1 and 2. It was developed on the Unreal Engine 4 and released in June 2018.

The game follows Dr. Jonathon Reid, a blood research specialist and military doctor during the first World War. He wakes up in a mass grave surrounded by bodies and with a burning hunger and unable to see anything clearly except the blood running through the veins of the closest living body. It turns out that the closest living body is Jonathon’s sister, Mary, who has been searching for him all over only to have her life drained by the person she loved most in the world. Don’t worry, none of this is a spoiler and occurs in the first five minutes of the game.

Image courtesy of Dontnot Entertainment/Focus Home Interactive

Jonathon is taunted by the shadowy image and voice of his creator and he goes on the hunt to find out what he is and who made him this way. During all of this, you must continue your work as a doctor during the night shift at a local hospital because London is being ravaged by a deadly influenza as well as a vampiric outbreak. Due to the increase in death in the city, an old group of vampire hunters block your way at every turn.

I wasn’t sure I liked this game at first. The controls are smooth and the graphics (while not true to life) are really good. The environment is dismal and lifeless, the facial graphics aren’t bad and Jonathon Reid is downright terrifying up close. He not only looks like a member of the undead, he’s practically zombie-like. The story unravels at a fairly quick pace, even if you do all of the side missions, and the most difficult parts are finding the ingredients to make medicine for your living patients and trying to avoid the vampire hunters.

Image courtesy of Dontnot Entertainment/Focus Home Interactive

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I do enjoy this game but there is one aspect that I REALLY disliked. When you feed off of anyone in any area, that area is affected. The more people you kill, the worse that district fares and if it gets too bad, every character living in that area will die. So, if you kill off the douche bags in the neighborhood, then all of the people you like, helped or haven’t even had the chance to help, will die and you can’t get that neighborhood back in the green. It becomes feral and infested and any side quest in that district is gone. That happened to me in White Chapel and it is infuriating.

The game encourages you to feed to level up and then punishes you for it. Speaking of leveling up, I highly recommend leveling up your hard bite and blood consumption ASAP. You’ll thank me later. Overall, Vampyr isn’t a bad game. There are some really great parts about it. I love the dreary time period, the inclusion of an epidemic, the music is just GORGEOUS and the story is really engaging. It isn’t perfect by any means, but it is one I would recommend taking the time to play.

Vampry available now on PS4, Xbox One and Steam.

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Have you played Vampyr? What did you think of the game? Sound off in the comment section below.