Vampire Survivors is a very simple gothic roguelike that made its way into Steam Early Access at the end of 2021. By the beginning of this year, he started to explodeand a game that allows you “Be Bullet Hell” has since garnered over 100,000 positive reviews. Now he has a spiritual brother named 20 minutes before dawn which asks the most important question: what if Vampire Survivors were the guns? The answer is that it will be another hit on Steam.
Although not as big as Vampire Survivors, 20 minutes before dawn succeeded in building on the success of the former thanks to small but significant changes in its basic formula. In both games, you’ll have to maneuver around a 2D map trying to survive in a crowd of enemies, while at the same time making a constant stream of random compromises in terms of improvements. But where’s the fight at Vampire Survivors 99% automated, 20 minutes before dawn works like a shooter with two joysticks, with a limited number of bullets in the chamber and the usual reload animation.
Created in just a few months by solo developer Flann and released in June, it’s based on horror but swaps 8-bit pixel art for lo-fi anime. Its difficulty curve is also steeper. You move slower while shooting, reloading takes time, and instead of a hit counter, your life is represented by just a few discrete heart icons (complete with veins and regular pulsation). In this case, more challenges equals more freedom of action, and where Vampire Survivors can sometimes feel like an autobatler, 20 minutes before dawn requires more constant vigilance, especially at the beginning of each new run.
First, you mow down swarms of small Cthulhu-like creatures and demonic trees. Later, snake gargoyles and the occasional mini-boss join the mix. By collecting the runes they leave behind, you can level up and earn upgrades such as magical ice daggers, baby dragons, and of course more bullets and a wider spread for your weapons (runes are also spent outside of each run for permanently unlocked items and upgrades). . Enemies take longer to kill first, and sometimes 20 minutes before dawn may appear slightly rougher around the edges than smooth drop of dopamine Vampire Survivorsbut a greater sense of control over my character and every run keeps me coming back.
Hades– as a meta-progress is still the fun part, and leveling up happens early and often. There are also plenty of additional characters and starting weapons to unlock, giving you even more room to experiment. As the name suggests, you are trying to survive against a clock counting down from 20 minutes (Vampire Survivors lasts up to 30 minutes). There’s even a compressed 10-minute mode where you can experience the full cycle of horde survival in half the time.
Certain sub-genres of games usually perform very well on Steam. Even yet 20 minutes before dawnX noteworthy meteoric rise. Chris Zukowski reported the whole mini cycle on his blogshowing how he took all the right steps to capitalize on the path laid out Vampire Survivors. However, he is quick to point out that it only worked because 20 minutes before dawn is a fun game that uses the formula in its own way. Flann worked on a tribute Final fantasy tactic called Spirit Link Tactics for five years he has changed and now he devotes all his time to continuing to renew his surprise hit.
Update 0.7.4 just released on July 30th, adding a new character named Luna who can use black holes to control a crowd of enemy mobs. As with Early Access, it seems that 20 minutes before dawn will only get better.