V Rising review - An engrossing vampire-filled action RPG – GameSpew (2024)

Want to live the life of a vampire? Stunlock Studios’ V Rising allows you to do just that, even going as far as letting you design and build your own castle. And while this engaging game that definitely doesn’t suck was once only available on PC, it now has a PS5 port, letting even more players become creatures that hunt in the night.

V Rising takes place in a world where vampires once ruled over all. Humans came along and put an end to that, however. Now, as a newly awakened vampire, you’re going to restore things to how they used to be. That means establishing a base, gearing yourself up, hunting down powerful foes to drink their blood, and ultimately becoming a force to be reckoned with.

An action RPG with survival and base building elements, V Rising doesn’t bombard you with story scenes. Instead, it’s focused on just giving you context and letting you make your own story. After waking from your slumber, you’re given a brief tutorial just to cover the basics, then you’re let loose in an open world. You do have objectives to guide your path, however.

V Rising review - An engrossing vampire-filled action RPG – GameSpew (1)

In the early hours of V Rising, the objectives are great for guiding your progress and introducing you to new gameplay elements in an intuitive manner. You’ll learn to craft basic gear, for example, and start laying down the basics of your castle, including its heart. Soon enough, you’ll be ready to start hunting down powerful foes, which is when V Rising really feels like it’s getting going.

Related: The best vampire games you can play right now

Your gear level is the pivotal thing here. You have many targets to track down possessing powerful V Blood across multiple acts, and you’ll need to grow your strength in order to stand a chance as you progress. But to make better gear, and acquire and enhance a repertoire of skills, you’ll need to explore the game’s world, collecting valuable resources, gaining knowledge, and taking on the targets you can defeat to learn new recipes and more.

By overcoming one powerful foe you might unlock a new piece of equipment you can craft that allows you to process a raw material, for example, allowing you to craft new gear that boosts your health and other stats. Beating another might grant new a new vampiric ability, such as turning into a wolf so that you can cover large distances quicker on foot. Alternatively, you might just simply get a spell point, allowing you to learn a new spell which you can then employ in battle.

V Rising review - An engrossing vampire-filled action RPG – GameSpew (2)

Once you get into the swing of things, V Rising becomes extremely engrossing, with you doing all you can to become the fearsome vampire lord you’re destined to be. And along the way, there’s little really to grumble about. Acquiring certain materials that you can’t currently make yourself can be a bit of a grind, but it’s never really a chore. And while not being able to explore during the daytime without bursting into flames can be troublesome, there are steps you can take to make it more manageable.

Perhaps the worst thing about V Rising on PS5 is its control scheme. Stunlock Studios has done its best to make this PC-centric game very much playable on console, but with so many options and features available the odds were stacked against it. And so, you might find moving the camera around to be a bit of a pain, or you might get yourself in a bit of muddle when it comes to buttons at times. There’s nothing too bothersome, though.

Overall, then, V Rising on PS5 is pretty much just as good as its PC counterpart. If you’re fan of action RPGs, it’s very much worth a look – especially so if you also enjoy games with survival and base building elements. You don’t need to enjoy it alone, either. Co-op is available, and you can also go against other players if you wish. There are many ways to enjoy V Rising, and it’s safe to say you get out of it what you put in.

This review of V Rising is based on the PS5 version, with a code provided by the game’s publisher. It’s available on PS5 and PC.

Richard Seagrave

V Rising review - GameSpew's score

V Rising

8 10 0 1

An action RPG with survival and base building elements, you get out of V Rising what you put into it. This is a deep and engrossing experience in which you get to develop your very own vampire lord, even going so far as to designing and building their castle. Only fiddly controls let it down a little on PS5.

An action RPG with survival and base building elements, you get out of V Rising what you put into it. This is a deep and engrossing experience in which you get to develop your very own vampire lord, even going so far as to designing and building their castle. Only fiddly controls let it down a little on PS5.

8/10

Total Score

We like...

  • Being a vampire is cool
  • Exploration is rewarding
  • Lots of spells and abilities to acquire

We don't like...

  • Controls can be fiddly
  • Daylight
V Rising review - An engrossing vampire-filled action RPG – GameSpew (2024)

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