A city gone mad with violence and the mass murder of its people. In this interactive graphic-novel, your choices can either lead you to the ultimate destruction of this fallen metropolis, or the demise of a vicious butcher. Will you save this city as promised or will you fall prey to the killer within?
User reviews: Mixed (191 reviews)
Release Date: Jul 17, 2014

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Recent updates View all (9)

October 20, 2014

Game Update: Mac Crash and Final Battle Fixes

Hi All!

We've just pushed an update addressing the crash issues for Mac users. Players should now also be able to successfully continue after defeating Vlad.

Please make sure you exit steam and download the update. Before attempting to play again.

As always, your feedack is incredibly helpful so feel free to post any questions or comments here or in the forums.

- The Vlad Team

0 comments Read more

October 9, 2014

Game Update/Bug Fixes

Release Notes

Hi All!

We've just pushed a patch fixing some of the issues introduced with our previous update. Below you'll find a list of the additions:


  • Achievements are now working correctly
  • Fixed an issue where players couldn't continue after beating Vlad.
  • Fixed an issue where players die when successfully charming Vlad.
  • Fixed an issue where player is shown incorrect text on death.
  • Fixed instance of incorrect quest text showing in Basilica.

  • Added SFX when player mouses over a quest name
  • Improved chapter video performance.
  • Changed flavor text for chapter deaths.

Please feel free to comment with any feedback and we’ll be sure to address it asap!

1 comments Read more

About This Game

Vlad is an interactive graphic-novel with RPG elements where your decisions shape the outcome of your story. Each playthrough offers a different experience and immersive story totalling two hours of content.


  • Three different classes to choose from.
  • A morality system that unlocks special classes based on your decisions.
  • The choices you make will make or break your stats, effecting how your story ends.
  • An engrossing, gritty art style that immerses you in the world of Vlad the Impaler.
  • Music by Kevin Riepl, composer for Gears of War and many other titles.
  • Over 50 unique illustrated stories.
  • Over 100 unique illustrations including weapons, characters, stories and more.


The scent of murder hangs in the air. It is the year 1452 and a city under siege is desperate. You receive a letter, bearing the king’s seal, begging for your help. A once beautiful, peaceful place is now a tormentor’s paradise; dark, bleak and heavy with fear.

You venture along the road to your destination, determined to solve the mystery terrorizing the citizens of Istanbul. Thousands of bodies line the roads, impaled on bloody poles, ravaged & torn, lying limp; faces contorted in anguish. If this is just the path to the city, what lies within its walls?

A gruesome scene welcomes you; hollow sockets live where eyes once saw their murderer coming for them. Torsos of young children ripped open, their bodies hung like criminals; blood filled pools in the Cistern house rotting bodies, throats cut, fingers missing. Dank Catacombs lined with broken bones containing new members, heads daggered, burn marks over eyes. Blood streaked Basilica walls, disembowelments and beheadings. The brutality is too much to bear. What – or who -is murdering the innocent lives of these people!? You hunt through the night, intent on finding your foe, bringing an end to the grisly massacre.

As the Explorer, you have knowledge of the land; you are fast, on target and adventurous. You leave no stone unturned in your pursuit. Will you be the enemy Spy or will you be the Emissary?

The Mage is skilled, wise and supernatural. Become the the high Priest who can be counted on to cast spells to protect the people of Istanbul or choose to be the Sorcerer and release your inner demon fueling your thirst for destruction.

The Soldier; fierce, strong, and none better with a blade. Protecting people is your Knightly duty, with your feminine intuition & compassionate heart leading you to do the right thing for the kingdom. But perhaps you would rather seek to unlock the dark side and become the Assassin. The choice is yours; will you seek justice or wickedness?

Each character unlocks unique levels and secret weapons. Feel the weight of your decisions and change the story of your game with each turn. Your actions will determine the future of your people, saving their souls or surrendering them to evil.

About the Developers

Section Studios brings you this action packed adventure, where your wits are just as important as your strength. We wanted to create an experience that combined a unique visual style with thoughtful narrative and game play. We chose a world and character that our team would feel passionate about reinventing with Vlad. By creating everything from story to artwork, we were allowed to let our imaginations run wild and create something we all felt connected to.

As a studio that originated in the world of video games, we know what our audience wants because we ARE the audience. Supernatural powers, an abundance of undead abominations and plenty of secret expeditions throughout the game, along with awesome, gothic graphics, illustrations & challenges are what made this game something we were proud to work on – and very excited to play.

System Requirements

Mac OS X
    • OS: Windows XP or Later
    • Processor: Core 2 Duo
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 256 MB graphics memory and directx 9.0c compatible gpu
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 512 MB available space
    • OS: Windows XP or Later
    • Processor: Core i3
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 256 MB graphics memory and directx 9.0c compatible gpu
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 512 MB available space
    • OS: Os X 10.7 or later
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive: 512 MB available space
    • OS: Os X 10.7 or later
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive: 512 MB available space
Helpful customer reviews
52 of 56 people (93%) found this review helpful
1.5 hrs on record
Posted: October 31, 2014
Recommended but ONLY while it's on sale, and ONLY if you don't mind a game consisting purely of reading and choices.

Vlad the Impaler has virtually no gameplay, and the only thing you, as the player, do, is make choices as the story unfolds. At its most basic, it's a choose-your-own-adventure type of game, but of course, the subject matter is different from the traditional children's books. Your character is sent by his liege, the eponymous Vlad, to investigate the increase in murders and violence in Istanbul, and depending on the character you choose, you will have different means to conduct your investigation, and defend yourself when attacked. Your character has stats, and they will increase and decrease during the adventure, making him or her better at surviving in different ways.

The writing is gripping and engaging (though for some reason, the word "and" is always missing), and while a playthrough can be completed in fifteen minutes, you'll find yourself doing quite a few of them, because it's impossible to do everything in one playthrough.

Negative points about the game are the fact that you don't know what outcomes your choices will have (and sometimes they'll be questionable), and that the stat increases and decreases seem to be a bit strange at times.

So if you like reading and playing a choose-you-own-story type of game, and you have a vivid imagination, you can buy this one while it's on sale. Its regular price isn't justified, not out of quality concerns, but by how short a playthrough is.
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26 of 27 people (96%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 3, 2014
This game is, unfortuantely, a mess. The drawings are beautiful, but there are tons of random words just missing from the narration, which can make it hard to follow. Otherwise the writing is good, but the missing words are consistent and pervasive. The chunks of story aren't written modularly enough to support having so many choices all at once; often you'll visit a place and people will reference information and events that haven't happened because you visited in the wrong order, even though there's no indication of an order. Because of that, you don't get a coherent narrative out of it unless you're lucky. All in all, this sounded like a great idea, but it doesn't work at the moment.
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24 of 27 people (89%) found this review helpful
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: September 27, 2014
It's a nice choose your own adventure type of interactive novel with some stat driving RPGing in the background but it is rather short... the main value derived from multiple playthroughs as you try to finish the game with different stats and alignments while adding different layers that surround the story.

The biggest gripe with the game is its brevity and the story isn't anything groundbreaking but on sale I'd recommend it to adventure game fans who don't mind reading and using their imagination to add color to the monotone backgrounds.
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11 of 14 people (79%) found this review helpful
3.8 hrs on record
Posted: October 27, 2014
A well-written visual novel with rpg elements. It plays like the old choose you own adventure books from the 90's, except here your choices influence the stats you gain as you progress towards a final battle against Dracula. With its dark story and gothic art, this is a nice choice for those looking for something a little different than the typical anime-inspired VN.
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
1.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 5, 2014
I don't recommend this game unless you get it for less than 2 dollars. the artwork and story are really good. i was exicted about it.

the fatal flaw of this game is that it is a story with a math game you need to figure out to win, which betrays the story.

the developers obviously thought that they were making a game with a lot of replay value. but when you are playing a text based game and have already read text in prior run through you are just clicking on a different choice to see what happens.

the fact is that the choices you make give you different pluses and minues (the math game) and you need a certain pattern to win. which again, seems to make the story less important.

other negatives
if you play rpgs you are used to saving before a decision, seeing what happens, going back. this game says EFF YOU to that and it saves for you. i literally deleted all my old saves manually so i could just start over.

so far, the game only loads correctly without a black screen of limbo once every 5 or 6 times. so that sucks balls.

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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: October 31, 2014
A neat little "choose your own adventure" of sorts, it's more story than game. Not a bad story, though. There are a few grammatical errors here and there but it's not a big deal. Overall, if you like this kind of "read then make a choice" kind of game, you'll like this. Will it keep you entertained for many hours? Probably not, which is why it's only five dollars. I think it's worth it at that and certainly worth it if it's on sale.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
7.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 2, 2014
Interesting game with a great style. Pick one of three classes, then make choices about where to explore and what to do. Each choice will affect your stats and sometimes your morality. I made around 10 runs through the game in 6 hours.

The worst thing about the game is the editing. There are extremely blatant typos throughout. "Draw if you wish, talk to the artists enjoy some food, rest culture before continuing with your investigation of the city's horrors." They could pay a college kid to proofread it for a few hours or just crowdsource the locations of all the mistakes and could make it a lot better. For a story conveyed primarily through words, many people will find this annoying.

If you think you can look past typos and would enjoy a dark, interactive VN, give it a try. 5/10
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7 of 9 people (78%) found this review helpful
2.2 hrs on record
Posted: September 28, 2014
I originally rated this game down, but due to updates in the game and the pricing, I am revising my review. This is a “choose your own adventure” type game that has a rapid progression, so it is a bit short for each play through. However, the development system is done through a clever character class system, the graphics are nice and the story has been cleaned up a bit. The addition of steam achievements was a final nice touch.

Now that the game has been dropped to a more appropriate price I can recommend it fully to those who enjoy this genre.
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7 of 9 people (78%) found this review helpful
3.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 2, 2014
While the concept art and music are appealing to me (I love the gamebook concept, which dated back into the days where the Lone Wolf series were popular). However, this game does not offer much flexibility in deciding how my character can become.

There are few 'battles' where I can hone my skills and leveled up, which will prepare me for epic boss fights. I am expecting all these in an rpg graphic novel. Given very little control over the battle mechanics, I find it more constrained when the characters I choose have skills that I didn't know of, and activated in story options that I have no clue of.

While some choices unlocked other beneficial options (eg killing the kidnapper allows the father of the rescued boy to give you some stats boosting potion, and grant access to the sultan's kitchen for more stats boosting concoction), the whole game didn't appear clear to me. In fact, the choices seems as chaotic as the game's opening indicated.

I was hoping to get more satisfaction over the weekend with this game. It could really have been better.
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
31.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 21, 2014
Vlad the Impaler is a text-based RPG game. There are 3 classes to choose from which are explorer, warrior, and mage. There is a karma level which will change your main class into one of two subclasses. For example, if you are a warrior and did mainly good karma choices in the game, you will become a paladin. On the other hand, if chose mainly evil karma choices, you will become an assassin. The impact on the game becoming one of two subclasses seem to be none. The choices, good to evil or neutral, seem to have their own unique rewards/penalties which will add, for example, stat to your strength. There are 6 chapters with 3 "missions" (each where you will make a choice) per chapter. In the very end, finally, you get to make choices on how to fight Vlad the Impaler. Seemingly the only combat you will do in this text-based RPG game.

At first walkthrough, it was very interesting experience but on the second and third walkthroughs, I was going through exact same missions (You can't pick all the same missions due to limit of missions per chapter but nevertheless, the missions do not change) and thus I found a significant hinderance to replayability value of the game. For anyone who are looking into this game, you are likely to lose all the value in playing after 4th or 5th walkthrough. As I have started skipping dialogues because I have already done the missions, some more than twice, before.

Due to lack of replayability value, I am not recommending this game. If this game is heavily discounted and you are looking for a few hours of valuable experience, then this game becomes barely recommendable. Expect more than few hours of valueable experience, just walk away from this game.
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6 of 8 people (75%) found this review helpful
1.4 hrs on record
Posted: September 30, 2014
Very short adventure/text game, but with a really nice graphic and a convincing and mature story.

5 € seems a good price for it.

In short, a good horror adventure/text game.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
12.5 hrs on record
Posted: January 26
This is an amazing point and click adventure/interactive visual novel. It offers a lot of choices that lead to original and unique storytelling. The game is very well made for the most part. The game offers actually spooks and scares as in hauntingly creepy imagery that's truly beautifully (I think hand drawn) drawn and pieced together. The game is like most Nosferatu and Dracula film adaptions but offers more realistic scenarios that aren't too unreal, and the game really has a great pace at surprising you with great direction. However the game does have it's flaws the main one is simply this: THE GAME IS TOO DAMN SHORT. Once you complete the story you can do the other two and do quite a few different run thoughs but it gets old. And the game could have been much longer but it's not so on a critical scale I'd give it a 8.5/10 and personal scale 9.5/10. I reccomend this to anyone who just wants a game with not much dedication to beat, a stop motion comic like experience and to almost anybody especially to anyone who loves Tim Burton films, or gothic films in general.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
2.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 13, 2014

Vlad the Impaler is a choose your own Adventure-style, text based
RPG game. Graphically the game is fair and the music does a good job of
conveying the atmosphere. One thing that makes this game different is the
lack of physical combat; game moves are based on the strength of the
players stat points.

The game is broken up into chapters. While the story is well done,
the results of your actions break down directly into how many ability points
you have and where. As I played the game, I found myself choosing missions
not by what looked interesting, but by which ones I could win based on what
stats I could gain. It took away from immersion in the game. You gain or lose
stats based upon your decisions in the missions, and while you play to earn
stats, unfortunately your stats play no part in the smaller missions.

If you enjoy a text based game and aren't interested in a combat element,
this game may be one you enjoy, but if you are looking for a game where your
skills are integrated into the game and have an impact on the missions, I would
avoid this one.

Overall for me, this game came really close to really being a great game,
but sadly they missed the mark. The story is good enough, but everything else
was sub-par.

This is a summary of my review video, which I encourage you to
watch if you are looking for a more in-depth review.

Thanks for your viewership and support; for more videos check click here.

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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 25, 2014
If you bought this game and you have the "black screen bug" like me, you're ♥♥♥♥ out of luck. the developers dont intent to patch this bug up eventho its a game breaking bug. There is no solution for it. You wasted your money.
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7 of 11 people (64%) found this review helpful
4.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 3, 2014
Let's start with this: I really really wanted to like this game. It seemed like perfection in theory: you make decisions, you can be good or evil, Vlad, nice graphics, you can be a mage/rogue/soldier (cookies for the devs that the female character is the soldier not the mage and there is functional armor), you are a badass, vampire and monster lore, what else could a girl want?
There are some interesting quests, some horrifying, some witty and sassy lines, some awesome art and some of the endings I saw so far were pretty surprising, but sadly none of these can balance that this game is seriously repetitive and irritating the more you play it.

It can be maddeningly unhelpful and buggy. I played through several times already, yet I still don't understand how certain quests activate or what stat is required for what. You can ask about something on Steam community (as this is about the only place where someone actually answers), but you will probably only get a "find out for yourself" answer from others, so you have to try making other decisions and decision combinations which certainly will try your patience when the number of your playthroughs is in the double digits.

You only get 2 options every decision: most of the time one of them gives good karma, the other evil karma. Your karma decides what specialization you get around Chapter 3.
You can die between the chapters, if your 'relevant' stat(s) aren't high enough (and sometimes the stat you need isn't the one you think it is), so you don't really have too much choice over your build. Fortunately or unfortunately it doesn't matter much what specialization you got, because everything is pretty uniform in the end.

There are 3+6 achievements which are the most aggravating thing in this game. You have to choose the eight weapons of every class (meaning: 3*(3 light weapons+3 dark weapons+1 light legendary+1 dark legendary)). Add to this that the legendary weapons sometimes won't spawn even if your 'relevant' stat is in the 20s range.
So yeah. That probably means around 24 or more playthroughs, if you don't forget to write down what weapon you already chose and you are lucky enough to have the 3*2 legendary weapons to spawn.

And let's not talk about the last fight, because that can be one of the most colossal ♥♥♥♥ups in the history of gaming and you pretty much only have a chance to win without charming (which has its own stat too) if you either had high enough stats or you got the specialized legendary weapon (which only happens if you had high enough stats at the end of Chapter 5). But sometimes the whole sequence gets buggy and you can't go back or forward so you are stuck and you have to start the whole game again, because the save feature is just... I don't know? Let's go with totally useless and let's say that it has room for improvement (but it won't probably get improved because I'm pretty sure that it was intended to be like this, so you are 'encouraged' to play the game over and over again).

So you can roleplay and die a lot, but if you actually want to win sometime then you are practically back to only doing those quests which give you the needed stats AND good or evil karma. You actually don't have much freedom while playing.

All in all:
I will collect all of the achievements in the end, but after that I'll never replay this game and it'll probably gather dust in my Library, because I certainly don't want a nervous breakdown over any of this ♥♥♥♥.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 29, 2014
First time i saw this game, i was like ,"Awesome! A game about Vlad The Imapler! It must be epic!"
And i was right, it is epic, if you like a well made story, you will like this game!
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 13, 2014
Dark. Dark enough to enjoy; I find it atmospherically inspiring. It does have some grammar errors and a couple of bugs. There is enough here though, to sink 5 bucks into amd be satisfied unless video game novels violate some sensibility you may have.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 27, 2014
Bought some fallafels and some baklava, threw some flowers at monsters, then told off Vlad the impaler, then he killed me

10/10 would get impaled again
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
20.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 3, 2014
Evaluation: Really creative game, but some of the dots don't quite connect.

Summary: If you haven't gathered from the description and other reviews, it's a graphic interactive. You are presented with places to "search" (or go, fight, investigate, etc) where you're given one or more options. Your choice determines the derived experience -- meaning what you learn about the state of the city (corruption, undercurrents, what evil abounds), or you just get your ♥♥♥ kicked along the way. Unfortunately, it's not airtight.

Key Plus factors:
+ Outstanding writing. Best aspect of the game. Potentially overwhelming with the amount of information you gather, the descriptions and language read well.
+ Understated graphics. Black/white impressionistic at start/finish of chapters.
+ The atmospheric and authentic element is successful.

Key Minus factors:
-- Extensive discontinuity. Conceptually, consider multiple doors that lead to different rooms along different paths. Great theory, especially for replayability, right? BUT ...You may go from point A to C without the critical knowledge one gets at B. (or you're later rewarded/penalized for a decision you never made). This is especially true for the subtle cluegathering as you solve the mystery, but such a game would be way to ambitious from a small studio.
-- That said, replayability is compromised because you can only make an either/or decision two ways.
-- Your attributes are raised/lowered based on your choices. Unclear how attributes even make a difference. A manual would be really helpful here. Sometimes impacts are unpredictable. Sometimes, you may need to compromise attributes to gain information. What's "charm" anyway?
-- Enjoyable music, but after a couple of hours, it might grow tiresome.

-- Permadeath. Dying in later chapters means you completely start over. Do not pass go, do not collect $200.

Clean up the discontinuity and you'd have a nice $15 game. For now, consider it bundle padding.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
3.0 hrs on record
Posted: October 31, 2014
An outstanding game, albeit the mechanics and story path are a bit shady and I sometimes felt I do not know what I am doing. The character attributes seem uncertain.
I had very much fun in my first attempt to beat the game, but I failed by doing some wrong steps. Gonna try it again and so should you!
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