Vampire Survivors skips Halloween and goes straight to a goodie-filled 1.7.0 Christmas update, because 'if big name stores can do it, why can't we?'

An image of a warrior in Vampire Survivors, standing in a snow-stricken field, surrounded by menacing golems.
(Image credit: Poncle)

Vampire Survivors has dropped a new patch—and you'd think, considering Halloween is fast approaching, that they might, oh, I don't know, lean into their already-present spooky themes a little? You'd think.

Instead, they've gone and swept the rug out from under just about everybody and released Patch 1.7.0, named "Whiteout", which is coincidentally what's happening to me right now as I stave off flashbacks of retail jobs past. Fittingly, the trailer asks: "if big name stores can do it, why can't we?" 

"Ready for the October patch?" the update page taunts with a few Halloween emojis, before remarking: "It's snow themed." Shot, meet chaser. Here's a full rundown of the update:

  • A new character that starts with some juicy movement speed and armour buffs.
  • A new bonus stage.
  • Two new relics—one that lets you snag a PowerUp called Defang, which takes a bite out of crime (but mainly your enemies). The other lets you morph an existing character.
  • A new weapon, the Glass Fandango.
  • A new bonus stage. Two guesses as to what the weather's like.
  • Six new achievements.
  • A new lo-fi groove to slay monsters to: Remedy in the Snow.

1.7.0 was originally going to also include a new type of mode called Adventures, which "remix content of the base game and add a bit of new flavour through new stage progression and descriptions." That's unfortunately going to have to come later in the year. 

"We wanted to deliver it together with Whiteout, but there's a lot of QA to do and, as mentioned in the previous update, the release process has become slower due to all the platforms we're on, so we decided to play it safe and leave the risky bits to a future update." They also dropped some details relating to Unity, or as they call it, the "INdUsTRy sTaNDaRd gAMe EnGiNE"—their capitalisation, not mine. 

"We'll keep supporting VS and stick to our top secret updates roadmap, but that doesn't mean that we aren't ready to port VS once again if the engine situation becomes unsustainable … most of the performance gains we've seen with the swap are in fact thanks to dropping the old tech stack" (which basically means a bunch of solutions or programs stacked on top of each other) "not because [Unity] is doing any miracles."

In case you missed some important context, Vampire Survivors made the swap to Unity August 17 of this year. This was a universal improvement, but the monkey's paw curled when Unity ambushed indie devs with some absolutely unhinged pricing plans, prompting Poncle to respond "lol no thank you!" when asked if it'd make another game in the engine. 

Anyway, as someone who worked a job where they started playing Christmas music October 1, I apologise for being a bit of a grinch in the opening paragraph. 1.7.0 looks like a fun, festive update, and it's a neat little switcheroo—after all, I'm not sure how you could make Vampire Survivors more Halloween if you tried. Maybe just plonk a pumpkin head on everything. Rename it to Vampire Sur-fright-vors. No, that's nothing, nevermind.

Harvey Randall
Staff Writer

Harvey's history with games started when he first begged his parents for a World of Warcraft subscription aged 12, though he's since been cursed with Final Fantasy 14-brain and a huge crush on G'raha Tia. He made his start as a freelancer, writing for websites like Techradar, The Escapist, Dicebreaker, The Gamer, Into the Spine—and of course, PC Gamer. He'll sink his teeth into anything that looks interesting, though he has a soft spot for RPGs, soulslikes, roguelikes, deckbuilders, MMOs, and weird indie titles. He also plays a shelf load of TTRPGs in his offline time. Don't ask him what his favourite system is, he has too many.