Welcome to my Steam Greenlight Spotlight the place where I shine a light on what I think are (hopefully) some hidden gems currently sitting in the Steam Greenlight among all the crap. I do this so you don’t have to.
As ever I have no affiliation with these games, they haven’t contacted me and asked me to give them attention, I discovered these games myself searching through the queue feature on the Greenlight page on Steam and voted yes for them because I think they look good.
Getting the spotlight treatment this week is… Vaporum
What is Vaporum?
Vaporum is a a steampunk dungeon crawler which the developers, Fatbot Games, put right in the main title image to grab your attention, and in my case it worked. I like steampunk stuff and I don’t mind dungeon crawlers so instantly I wanted to know more.
The description on their Greenlight page reads as follows;
Vaporum is a grid-based, single-player & single-character dungeon crawler game 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.
Before going any further though, that little description does highlight what might be the one big turnoff for some people, it is single-player. Doesn’t bother me, I like a good single-player game, but a lot of people like a multiplayer or co-op experience in their games now and I think for a lot of people dungeon crawling with a small group of friends or even just a friend might be more preferable.
As ever I watched the trailer before reading any of the information on the page (you gotta draw me in with a good trailer people) and I noticed that everything, including the player character, seemed to be moving in a grid-based manner which as you can clearly see is mentioned in the description. OK that’s a little different and not something you see that often and from watching the trailer it looks like moving on a grid system offers a fun challenge, especially when there are multiple enemies and you have to constantly move from grid to grid to be able to attack them but avoid getting attacked yourself or even cornered. At one point towards the end of the trailer you see an enemy kick the player knocking them back a grid, except there’s nothing behind them to stand so they fall to their death, which sucks but highlights some of the challenges the grid-based system provides which I like, it’s something you have to be constantly aware of and thinking about.
The game promises that each enemy type will all have its own strengths and weaknesses with various kinds of attacks and defensive abilities which require different tactics to beat them and that each weapon has its own unique bonus or behaviour that other don’t have which make them more suited to taking on certain types of enemies. Fairly standard stuff but it does mean that you need to give some thought to your loadout.
Along with the weapons there are also gadgets which can both grant buffs or inflict damage but drain your energy to use. Again something else that is fairly standard but allows for greater configuration with your loadout.
You can also level up as you progress through the game because who doesn’t like to feel like they get stronger with each enemy they kill. In Vaporum you upgrade your exo-rig as you absorb the energy from destroyed enemies that allow you to unlock useful circuits on it which can grant you passive skills or permanent attribute bonuses. I suppose unlocking new circuits on an exo-rig with more energy is more logical than a person just randomly improving their skills?
There are also puzzles and riddles to solve as you look to complete objectives that can span multiple levels. I suppose you have to break the combat up somehow.
Vaporum looks like a fun and challenging dungeon crawler, the grid-based movement system looks to add an interesting additional challenge, and clearly a lot of thought has gone into the weapons, gadgets, and exo-rig and how they all interact with each other and the different loadouts and play styles they can create.
As for the steampunk setting, it looks mighty impressive, easily fits with the style of the game and allows for interesting weapons and enemy types.