20 Tips & Tricks To Start Playing Vampire Survivors

Having a hard time surviving and winning matches on Vampire Survivors? If so, this list of basic beginner tips and tricks will help you to go through the game easier.

The main goal of the game Vampire Survivors is to survive for 30 minutes. Players pick a character, a stage, and then try to keep that character alive as enemies rush the player in ever-growing numbers and difficulty. As the player kills thousands of enemy creatures and increases their character’s level, new weapons and accessories will be acquired. Picking the right loadout is important if the player wishes to see minute 30.

There are other factors that a player must consider if they want to get to the end of the stage in one piece. This indie title’s gameplay loop can get overwhelming quickly, especially since the game has quite a bit of depth to it. Vampire Survivors beginners might have a hard time staying alive for the full 30 minutes.

Updated November 8, 2022, by Jeff Drake: Version 1.0 of Vampire Survivors has finally been released, and with it comes a load of new content – some of which has changed the game in interesting ways. By using the beginner tips listed below, new players will have a much better chance of surviving to the end of a stage, getting the most out of their builds, and unlocking new content a little quicker.

20. Keep Track Of Collectibles

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (1)

At the title screen, there is a “Collections” tab. This takes the player to their collection, which is a list of every weapon, passive item, arcana, pick-up item, and relic the player has acquired. It pays to check this every now and then to see if there’s a part of the collection (or parts) that can be filled in during the next run.

The Unlocks tab is another area to check every time the game is started. Vampire Survivors is always getting new content, so it’s entirely possible there is new content to unlock each time a player starts the game. Unlocking content adds new layers of enjoyability to this game.

19. Unlock The Merchant

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (2)

There is a merchant in the game. It needs to be unlocked before it will appear, though. The merchant will sell the player some of the rarer weapons in the game, as well as an additional arcana – the extra arcana is a bit expensive (20,000 gold). The merchant also sells Golden Eggs; which permanently improve one of the character’s stats.

Beginner players should unlock the merchant as soon as possible. Another thing to remember is that the merchant can only be visited once per run. Players should use the merchant if they are having trouble surviving a run and still have an open weapon slot.

18. Torrona’s Box

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (3)

One of the best passive items in the game is arguably Torrona’s Box. This handy item increases the Area, Duration, Might, and (projectile) Speed of all weapons. The problem with this item is that when it reaches level nine it gives the enemies’ frequency, health, quantity, and (movement) speed.

A strategy to avoid this curse is to banish the item before it reaches level nine. If Banished at level eight, the player still retains all the benefits of the item, but none of the curse. players should be careful collecting treasure chests when doing this as they might accidentally raise Torrona’s Box to level nine.

17. Alternate Game Modes

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (4)

As a player progresses through this game they will begin to unlock new game modes. Hyper Mode must be unlocked individually for each stage, but when the other game modes are unlocked it affects all stages. One of the first of these a player will be able to use is Hyper Mode. This mode increases the MoveSpeed and projectile speed. Each stage might also have additional modifiers while in Hyper Mode.

Hurry Mode simply doubles the speed of the clock. Inverse Mode greatly increases enemy strength. Endless Mode removes Death’s appearance at the 30-minute mark and causes the enemies to appear again, slightly stronger as if starting the stage from the beginning.

16. Have A Plan

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (5)

Before starting a stage, it helps if the player decides on at least a few weapons to try and get during the run. They shouldn’t be afraid to use some Rerolls, Skips, and Banishes to avoid being forced to pick a weapon or passive item that isn’t needed. Knowing what passive items work with which weapons helps too and will optimize the build.

Picking weapons and passive items without a loose build in mind is the leading cause of failing to finish a stage. Trying to finish a stage by just picking weapons and items at random is fun, but not a very good way to unlock new content.

15. Hyper Mode

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (6)

It sounds daunting, but the Hyper Mode in Vampire Survivors isn’t really more difficult. In many ways, it’s easier than the standard mode. The increased speed of the player and the enemies allows the player to level up quite a bit faster. It’s not uncommon to have all weapons and accessories fully leveled and (mostly) evolved by the 15-minute mark.

Beginners might want to wait until they’ve purchased a few of the Power-ups. Having access to the better unlockable characters, like Poppea, Christine, Cavallo, and Dommario will also give a greater chance of surviving Hyper Mode.

14. Using Pick-up Items

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (7)

When the light sources are destroyed they drop pick-up items. This is almost always a gold coin; though, sometimes the player is given one of the rarer pick-up items. The three the player should learn to identify quickly are the Rosary, Vacuum, and Nduja Fritta Tanto – the Orologion is also useful at times. The Vacuum pulls in all experience gems on the ground. Keep this at the corner of the screen and allow gems to accumulate for a few minutes before picking this up.

The Rosary kills all enemies onscreen, including bosses. Save these for when a boss is onscreen for an easy treasure chest. The Nduja Fritta Tanto acts as a flamethrower; again, save this for when a boss appears. A higher Luck gives the player a better chance at the rarer pick-up items.

13. Treasure Chests

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (8)

Treasure chests increase the level of one (or more) of the character’s weapons and accessories. They are also used to evolve a weapon when it meets the requirements. Not all treasure chests evolve weapons though. Chest dropped before the 10-minute mark will not evolve weapons; there are a few exceptions to this. All chests in the Dairy Plant and Il Molise can evolve weapons, and the first boss in Mad Forest drops a chest that can evolve a weapon.

If Arcanas are turned on the chests dropped at 11:00 and 21:00 will give the player another Arcana selection. Lastly, a higher Luck gives a greater chance of a higher tier treasure chest, which improves more items than normal.

12. Arcanas

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (9)

Arcanas allow the player to alter various aspects of the game. The player can select one Arcana, represented by cards, at the start of the stage. Two more Arcanas are given to the player over the course of the stage, but for these, the player picks one from a group of three that are randomly selected.

When certain Arcanas are grouped together the combination is absolutely overpowered. Players should focus on unlocking the Awake Arcana first. This gives three Revives, and the use of Revives increases Might, Duration, Area, Max Health, Speed, and Armor. Using this Arcana makes unlocking the others a lot easier.

11. Item Rarity

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (10)

Some weapons and accessories have a much better chance of being offered to the player when leveling up – some weapons are statistically close to 0%. It really pays to know the rarity values of the weapons and items. This will prevent the player from passing up on a weapon they may never get as a selection again – not just for the run, but ever (as in forever).

In general,if the Bone or Cherry Bomb is given as an option the player should get them. The Duplicator and Tiragisu are high-rarity accessories the player should think about selecting when they’re offered.

10. Use The Keyboard

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (11)

For many PC games, it makes sense to use the mouse for the movement of the player character. This leaves the player’s off-hand free to hit hotkeys on the keyboard. This is much more efficient than using the keyboard for movement and having to use the mouse to activate onscreen buttons or tabs.

In Vampire Survivor, there is only movement – weapons fire on their own, and either has random targets or attack the nearest enemy. Since only one hand is needed to play this game, the keyboard (the WASD keys) should be used. Most veteran players would tell beginners it feels more intuitive than using the mouse. Of course, the best way to play this game is with a game controller.

9. Get To Know The Weapons

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (12)

There are plenty of weapons in Vampire Survivors, and they are all quite different from each other (with a few exceptions). Beginner players should spend a few playthroughs trying the various weapons. Just because the internet has declared some of the weapons in the game unworthy, that doesn’t mean some players won’t prefer them.

The Garlic weapon is a prime example. It’s considered a low-tier weapon, but many players swear by the Garlic weapon. Players should learn what weapons suit their tastes, but also know that some weapons are clearly better than others.

8. Get To Know The Accessories

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (13)

Weapons aren’t the only thing players need to think about when playing. There are accessories to consider as well. Accessories are passive items that provide a passive ability – like making the character move faster or increasing weapon damage. Beginner players should experiment with different weapon-accessory combos. The King Bible weapon is made extremely overpowered with the Empty Tome and Spellbinder accessories.

These accessories are also used to evolve certain weapons. Some weapons evolve when they reach the maximum level and a specific accessory is in the inventory. Learn these recipes.

7. Get To Know The Characters

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (14)

There is a huge roster of characters to choose from in Vampire Survivors, and one secret character that can be selected with a key input in the main menu. Beginners will know that, at the start, they only have access to the Antonio character. As players unlock the other characters they will discover they have different abilities.

Learn when to use a character. Players wanting to gain experience faster should use Imelda Belpaese; whereas, players wanting their weapons to shoot more projectiles should use Gennaro Belpaese or Mortaccio. The characters also have different starting weapons. Keep this in mind when planning a playthrough, as some weapons are more effective depending on which stage is selected.

6. Luck

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (15)

The in-game description for the Luck stat is a little vague. Many beginners might assume it only gives them a fourth choice when gaining a new level. Luck, however, affects many aspects of the game, and in ways that new players might not expect.

A high Luck increases the chance of getting better treasure chests. Luck can improve the items that are dropped when destroying a brazier. The chance of scoring a critical hit also increases with a higher Luck stat. There are negative events that can occur while playing – the ever-shrinking ring of carnivorous plants is one of these events. A bit of high luck makes these events less likely to occur.

5. Power-ups

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (16)

After a stage the player has the opportunity to spend their hard-earned gold on global power-ups; this is accessed from the Title Screen. The power-ups have the same effects as many of the accessories, but they are permanent bonuses that affect all the characters.

Players will want to focus on the power-ups that improve weapons’ damage, duration, and the number of projectiles. Reducing cooldown time is another important power-up on which to focus. Don’t forget to purchase the Growth power-up too; this increases the amount of experience a character receives.

4. Keep Moving

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (17)

In Vampire Survivors, it’s generally better to keep moving. The fact that there’s an unofficial “No Move Challenge” for this game should tell you how much easier it is to stay alive if the character remains mobile. Enemies appear along the sides of the screen and relentlessly move toward the player character – meaning it’s easy to get trapped.

When a player sees an opening in the enemy ranks they should not hesitate – these openings close in seconds. Also, don’t focus on the player character too much. Players should try to maintain a wide view of the battlefield while playing.

3. Keep Track Of The Time

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (18)

When playing a stage there is a counter at the top that keeps track of the minutes played down to the second. Players need to keep in mind what happens at certain times. For instance, after every minute the game starts spawning stronger enemies.

There are other scripted events to remember. In the Mad Forest, a literal swarm of skeletons enters the screen at the 10-minute mark; a ring of carnivorous plants might spawn instead. At the 15-minute mark in the Inlaid Library, a ton of fast, flying medusa heads begins spawning. Lastly, the 25-minute mark is when the boss of the stage will appear.

2. Use The Battlefield

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (19)

This entry goes hand-in-hand with the “Keep Moving” entry. It’s important to keep moving, but it’s also important to not mindlessly move around the battlefield. Use the enemy’s simple logic of moving straight toward the character against them. Try to herd groups of enemies together so that when the character’s weapons activate there’s a large group of enemies waiting to take the hit.

In addition to this, players should try to remember where the braziers (Mad Forest) and tall candelabras (Inlaid Library) are when roaming around a stage. These can drop all kinds of great items; most notably food (healing).

1. Focus On A Few Weapons

Vampire Survivors: 20 Tips & Tricks For Beginners (20)

It can be tempting to select a new weapon or accessory when going up in level. New players will start collecting the weapons they hoped to get. This can lead to the character’s death around minute 15. It’s better to focus on leveling up a couple of a character’s weapons, rather than have a full inventory of low-level weapons.

Doing this will get the character ready to kill the stronger enemies that start spawning around the 10-minute mark. A character that has six low-level weapons will get overrun at some point. The first weapons a player should get are the ones that surround the player, like the King Bible, Garlic (if that’s your thing), or Whip.

Vampire Survivors is available on PC and macOS.