V Rising, the other vampire survival hit of 2022, is going free to play for Halloween

V Rising
(Image credit: Stunlock Studios)
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The Bloodfeast is coming to the hit indie vampire survival game V Rising (opens in new tab), and while that sounds ominous and potentially horrific, what it means in practical terms is that you can play the game for free this weekend.

Beginning on October 28 and running through November 1, V Rising—not to be confused with Vampire Survivors, which is a whole different thing and, ironically, not actually a survival game (in the conventional sense, at least)—will be fully free to play (opens in new tab) for all creatures of the night. A day before  that, October 27, V Rising will also be added to Nvidia's cloud gaming service GeForce Now.

Ahead of the free weekend, developer Stunlock Studios is also releasing Halloween-themed DLC for V Rising called the Haunted Nights Castle Pack, which includes an array of new cosmetics, lighting options, and furniture. 

To access the new content, first install it (opens in new tab) (you'll need to have V Rising installed as well, naturally) and then complete a trio of journal quests:

Lord of Shadows

  • Haunted Nights Coffin (Skin variation of Wooden Coffin)
  • Haunted Nights Stash (Skin variation of Wooden Stash)

The First Book in the Library

  • Haunted Nights Carpets
  • Haunted Nights Stained Glass (Window)
  • Haunted Nights Wall Decor (2x Wallpapers)
  • Haunted Nights Web Drapes (Wall / Window Wall / Pillar attachments)
  • Haunted Nights Gourd Lantern (Pillar attachment Light)
  • Haunted Nights Floating Gourd (Flying Light)
  • Haunted Nights Lanterns (4x Standing Lights)

Expanding My Domain

  • Haunted Nights Standing Mirror

(Image credit: Stunlock Studios)

(Image credit: Stunlock Studios)

(Image credit: Stunlock Studios)

There's also a new update (opens in new tab) out today that makes a number of balance and gameplay changes to V Rising, and adds a new Mad Hunt game present for both PvE and PvP action. The full patch notes are below:

General

  • The Servant Resurrection timer has been increased to 10 minutes from 15 seconds (Primarily to tackle PvP scenarios where the short resurrection timer could be abused).
  • We have rebalanced how Siege Golem health is calculated and have updated the Siege Golem health settings. By default, Siege Golems will have 250% more health (represented as shield value) than before. The Golem's health also scales based on the player's current health to a minimum of 50% of the total health (should the player transforming have less than 50% health, the golem’s shield value will be reduced accordingly).
  • The default time-slot setting for when PvP raiding is active has been reduced to 18:00-22:00 local server time from 17:00-23:00.
  • The maximum height travel for Mist Trance has been reduced; this fixes an issue where players could reach unwanted heights using this ability.
  • The mirror visuals of the Gothic Mirror and the Cabal Mirror have been updated.
  • Chandeliers and other rotating buildable objects no longer flicker when “temporal anti-aliasing” and “motion blur” is active.
  • The chat message that printed “We are experiencing technical issues on some hardware setups…” every 90 minutes, prompting users to restart their game has been removed periodically.
  • Old saves are now automatically backed up when they’re loaded in a new game version. The backed-up save is placed in <Save Directory>\.BACKUP\<Old Game Version>\AutoSave_X.save
  • Added rocks north of the Farbane Bear Cave so that players in the future cannot build in such a way that it blocks the cave exit, trapping players. Also added a new route to take if there is an actual castle blocking the normal path.
  • Fixed a glitch in the Silverlight Silver Mines that allowed players to jump into the mountain.
  • Fixed a bug where some world teleporters could stop working for new players.

New Game Presets

Two new Game Presets have been added:

  • Mad Hunt - PvP 
  • Mad Hunt - PvE

These presets enable three new server settings:

Shuffle V Blood Locations

  • Shuffles the location of all V Blood units and alters their faction to reflect the faction of the V Blood they replace. V Blood units are shuffled using three pre-defined groups based on difficulty level.
  • When this setting is active, all V Blood units have their portrait and lore hidden in the V Blood Menu until they are defeated.
  • Note that the technology unlocked to progress is still unlocked in the same order and level, but a new V Blood unit will take its place and level.

Shuffle V Blood Abilities

  • Shuffles all V Blood ability rewards randomly across the board. Some units will end up with one ability reward, others with two, and some with zero.

Shuffle V Blood Tech

  • Shuffles the technology rewards of all V Bloods. Technology is shuffled using many pre-defined groups to ensure that players may progress with essential technology regardless of how rewards are shuffled.
  • Note: When Shuffle Tech & Shuffle Abilities are activated, some V Bloods may end up with no rewards.
  • Note" Enabling any Shuffle settings may only be done when starting a new server. These settings cannot be modified on a running server, nor can these settings be deactivated.

Balance Changes

Weapons

  • Axes
  • Frenzy
  • Casttime increased to 0.35s from 0.3s.
  • Hitbox radius reduced to 4 from 4.2.
  • X-Strike
  • Range reduced to 8 from 10.
  • Sword
  • Spinning Strike
  • Damage per hit increased to 35% from 30%.
  • Reaper
  • Howling Reaper
  • Duration reduced to 2.2s from 2.5s.
  • Total area damage reduced from ~180/200% (this could vary depending on range before) to 160% (note that the initial projectile hit still deals 50% damage).
  • Spear
  • A Thousand Spears
  • Reduced spear channel duration to 1.1s from 1.35s (effectively reduces the time a unit is stunned by the attack by 0.25s).
    Damage per hit reduced to 20% from 25% (from a total of 200% damage to 160%).
    The attack now hits all enemies in the area rather than only one.
  • These changes reduce the damage and stun duration for single-target attacks but make the spear overall stronger when hitting several targets (primarily affecting PvE).
  • Slashers
  • Camouflage
  • Incapacitate duration reduced to 2s from 2.5s.

Spells

  • Mirror Strike
  • Hit Collider increased (now has the same hitbox as Merciless Charge and Heart Strike).
  • Arctic Leap
  • Freeze duration on vampire targets reduced to 2s from 3s.
  • General Freeze
  • The shield component of Freeze has been changed from a static 5 health shield to a spell-power-based shield. Freeze now shields the target for 50% of the owner Spell-Power resulting in a shield that scales from ~5 - 20.
  • General
  • Shields now properly use the owner's spell power when calculating the power of a shield that is applied rather than using the target's shield power.
  • Crimson Aegis
  • Duration reduced to 3s from 4s.
  • Crimson Beam
  • Reduced duration to 3s from 4s.
  • Increased damage per second to 200% from 150%.
    Increased healing per second to 150% from 100%.

    Corpse Explosion
  • Radius increased to 3.2 from 2.8.
  • Volatile Arachnid
  • Increased movement speed to 4.8 from 4.5.
  • Reduces cast time for self-detonate to 1s. from 1.2s.
  • Detonation damage increased to 120% from 100%.
  • Spectral Wolf
  • Bounce damage reduction per hit reduced to 85% from 75% (effectively increases the damage overall from hitting multiple targets).
  • Spectral Assassin
  • Damage increased to 140% from 125%.
  • Spectral Assassin attack cast time reduced to 0.9s from 1s.
  • Chaos Burn Effect
  • Reduced to 5 ticks from 7 (reduces damage to 50% from 70%).
  • Veil of Chaos
  • Knockback tier reduced from illusion detonation to no longer affect vampire players.
  • Aftershock
  • Cooldown reduced to 10s from 12s.
  • Damage increased to 125% from 100%.
  • Void
  • Damage increased to 75% from 70%.
  • Fixed an issue where Void would consume Chaos Burn if it was active on a target.

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.