The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing is an action RPG which is inspired by games like the Diablo series. While not a direct copy of Diablo, the game does take many elements from the series, but also introduces a number of its own unique characteristics.

You will play as the main character, Van Helsing, who is trying to live up to his famous father’s reputation: also called Van Helsing. Van Helsing can make use of his sword, his gun or one of two equipped spells with a quick switching procedure. In the game, you have your Occult Hunter and Mystic Warrior trees, each respectively being paths to upgrade your range and melee abilities. In addition to these, individual customisations to each tree allows you to choose special abilities to focus on in each aspect.

In addition to the previously discussed weapon options, Van Helsing also makes use of ‘tricks’. Tricks are quick, effective spells which can be used are temporary solutions, for example, temporary invisibility, quick healing or an attack boost. Aurus are also available, but aren’t as useful. These are essentially tricks which can be equipped, but only work some of the time. For example, one of the aurus which can be applied has the CHANCE of increasing the amount of loot found in a given area.

Now, to speak a little about the criticisms of the game; Van Helsing can feel slightly slow paced in some areas, but well paced in others. Sometimes, the enemies are just too prevalent in some sections of the game, and fighting them gets very tiring, but, in other areas, they are perfectly distributed. Overall, this isn’t a huge issue, as it only effects a limited amount of the game, however, it is good to keep in mind if you don’t like extended battles.

Keeping on the theme of enemies, the game doesn’t maintain a steadily increasing difficulty level throughout. As mentioned earlier, the game throws too many enemies in some parts of the game, however, the game throws a lot of enemies at you in all parts of the game. Swarms of enemies invade your game in most places, but in some areas, it can become excessive. For example, you could face forty, fifty or even sixty enemies at once in a wave, but then, the next battle will only throw ten enemies per wave. While the large battles can be fun, when you keep dying, it gets tiring quite quickly.

Now, back to some of the game elements. Throughout the game, you are accompanied by a ghost named Katrina. She can be outfitted with armor, weapons and other stat-boosters, and she can be told to perform as in ghost mode, melee mode or ranged mode. Ghost mode allows her to become immune to all damage, however, she cannot deal damage. The benefit is that any damage done to you, Van Helsing, will be reduced by one-tenth. Katrina can be completely controlled by the player, in almost every way. It is one of the positives of the game; it is quite flexible in terms of the player’s control of different elements.

In terms of graphics, the game is average. These graphics aren’t mind-blowing or eye-popping, but they suffice for a game which offers a fair amount of gameplay across its two acts for only $15. Unfortunately, the level system is capped at 30, quite low as you will very likely reach it without a problem in your playthrough of the game. The game’s music is quite good for a $15 game, and sound effects fit the atmosphere of the title.

Overall, Van Helsing is definitely worth a pop for $15 if you are a fan of games like Diablo or Torchlight. The graphics aren’t bad, sound is good, gameplay is fun and flexible and for its price, the game is definitely good value. Check it out on Steam if you enjoyed the review!