I received a copy of Vaporum for review recently, and while I’m not quite ready to write said review yet, I did want to bring Vaporum to your attention, as it releases September 28 on Steam and is a fantastic grid based Dungeon Crawler that pays homage to Legend of Grimrock I and II in addition to plenty of other luminaries of the genre. However, Vaporum manages to claim it’s own identity with its Steampunk setting and completely modern controls and graphics. I fully expect this game to capture the imaginations of Dungeon Crawler fans everywhere.
However, our spotlights are designed to provide actual context and information regarding the game rather than review content itself. As such, let’s see how developer Fatbot Games, s. r. o. describes their game.
Vaporum is a grid-based, single-player & single-character dungeon crawler RPG seen from the first person perspective in an original steampunk setting. Inspired by old-school games like Dungeon Master I and II, the Eye of the Beholder series, and the most recent Legend of Grimrock I and II. Stranded in the middle of an ocean, in front of a gigantic tower, the hero has to find out what the place is, what happened there, and most importantly, who he is.
Here are some of the key features included in Vaporum.
- First person real-time combat
- Puzzles and level-wide objectives
- Gadget-based RPG system
- Lots of exploration, loot, and character customization
- Mysterious storyline filled with secrets
- Fully voiced main characters
- Immersive steampunk setting
So far, my experience with Vaporum has revealed a pretty interesting progression system wherein experience you gain from combat or the occasional loot will allow you to upgrade your exo-rig, which is functionally your armor while providing other boosts. As you upgrade your armor, you are basically upgrading your character as well. From weapon and tech skills to hit points and energy, everything is accomplished based on your choice of three starter exo-rigs and then copious upgrades and buffs from there. This system of progression is described as such:
Instead of increasing the abilities of your human character, you will improve an exo-rig that you find early in the game.
The character progression system combines a “you are what you wear” aspect with a long-term development of your exo-rig. The gadget-based system allows you to equip various gadgets to help you define your own playstyle. Because gadgets are items, you can change your loadout at any time, giving you a great deal of flexibility to deal with various situations.
On the other hand, as your exo-rig becomes more powerful by absorbing energy from destroyed enemies, you get to unlock useful circuits on it, gaining significant permanent attribute bonuses and passive skills.
These two approaches result in a ton of customization, all at your will.
Since I will be reviewing Vaporum sometime within the next couple weeks, I don’t want to go too far in depth as to the rest of the game, but for me, this is an exciting title in a genre that currently is lacking in variety and options. I think if you check Vaporum out, and are a fan of Dungeon Crawlers, you will share in my excitement.
Here is a trailer to further whet your appetite: