Vampire Survivors claims the Breakthrough Award at the Golden Joystick Awards 2022

Surprise indie hit Vampire Survivors has claimed the Breakthrough Award at the Golden Joystick Awards 2022.

The Breakthrough Award is all about celebrating games that break the mold and surprise us with their craft. Winners have included titles like Returnal, which catapulted developer Housemarque to the forefront of Sony's PS5 efforts, Among Us, which shot to new relevance and left its mark on internet culture, and Stardew Valley, which reignited an enduring love for cozy farming games.

Vampire Survivors certainly falls into that latter category. Bursting out of nowhere with its understated graphics, simple but endlessly-addictive gameplay, and generous price tag, it was one of the most unexpected Steam hits of the year, and it's already helping shape a new generation of horde modes. As a lone hunter, the roguelite tasks you with mowing down hundreds, if not thousands, of undead, using a wild array of weapons that you upgrade over the course of each run to turn yourself into the ultimate Vampire killing machine.

The first title from developer Poncle, it received plenty of excellent updates expanding its roster of characters and the many tools at its disposal, coasting through the perils of Early Access into a successful launch in October. Hopefully, there's plenty more to come from this team.

Speaking of Early Access, Vampire Survivors was unlucky not to walk away with a second award at this year's Award Ceremony. It was also nominated for Best Early Access Launch, where it had to contend with the likes of Disney Dreamlight Valley, Core Keeper, and eventual winner Slime Rancher 2 in a deeply competitive category.

Discover the best games of 2022 at the best prices by checking out the Golden Joystick Awards Steam sale page

Ali Jones
News Editor

I'm GamesRadar's news editor, working with the team to deliver breaking news from across the industry. I started my journalistic career while getting my degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick, where I also worked as Games Editor on the student newspaper, The Boar. Since then, I've run the news sections at PCGamesN and Kotaku UK, and also regularly contributed to PC Gamer. As you might be able to tell, PC is my platform of choice, so you can regularly find me playing League of Legends or Steam's latest indie hit.