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V Rising is an open-world vampire survival game from Stunlock Studios, developers of the critically acclaimed Battlerite. It’s planned for a full launch on Steam after an initial Early Access period in 2022. While Stunlock Studios handled all content creator interactions, Plan of Attack handled the PR communications of the Early Access launch campaign.

Plan of Attack began the communications campaign for V Rising in May 2021 with an IP announcement that hit the ground running, generating 149 news stories with big outlets such as GameStar, IGN, Jeuxvideo, Game Rant, 3DJuegos and Rock Paper Shotgun covering the reveal. This was followed with two Q+As in June: The first, on the 2nd, showed off the first screenshots, GIFs and artwork of the game, garnering 35 news hits from COGconnected, RaGEZONE and MMORPG. The second Q+A arrived on June 23rd, revealing concept art and vampire designs, which grabbed 20+ hits with JeuxOnLine, Bloody Disgusting and Massively Overpowered. On July 19th the news of Tencent taking the majority stake in Stunlock Studios was sent out with 14 news articles covering the announcement, including stories by VGChartz, Kotaku Australia, 4Players and TheGamer.

Post summer holidays, the PR campaign jumped back into action with V Rising’s first gameplay trailer drawing in the masses with 146 news pieces from this reveal on September 15th, getting coverage with top tier sites 4Players, IGN, CD-Action, Massively Overpowered, PC Invasion and Screen Rant. This was soon followed up by a new Dev Blog on the 22nd with Creative Director Martin Lövgren and Game Director Peter Ilves talking about what to expect when playing V Rising, including extra gameplay footage, gaining a modest 27 news hits from big sites such as Eclypsia, Screen Rant and PC Invasion. On October 28th, just in time for Halloween, a new chilling gameplay trailer showing off the gothic side of V Rising was unveiled with 62 outlets covering the video, including MMORPG, Bloody Disgusting and Massively Overpowered. The last PR beat of 2021 came on December 14th with a new V Rising gameplay trailer showing off combat with 80 outlets covering the news including GameStar, 4Players and COGconnected.

The New Year kicked off with a Dev Update on January 27th going into depth about the game’s V Blood feature, which was covered by 28 outlets such as PlayGround, Bloody Disgusting and Massively Overpowered. This was followed a couple months later on March 17th with the much anticipated announcement of the Closed Beta + new trailer being picked up by 89 sites including Gamepur, IGN, Gamekult, VG247 and GameStar.

While things calmed down during the Closed Beta, April made up for it, starting with a dev diary exploring the world of Vardoran on April 1st, amassing 25 news hits from the likes of GoHa.Ru, Massively Overpowered and MMORPG. On April 14th, V Rising’s Early Access release date was revealed to be May 17th, which was covered by 66 outlets including from Eurogamer Italy, Gamepur, Bloody Disgusting, GamingScan and PC Invasion. 12 days later on April 26th, the winners of a Horror Poster Art Contest were announced generating five news articles from sites such as DLH.Net and Versus Media México. And soon after on the 28th, a trailer showing off V Rising’s castle building was received by 60+ outlets including Niche Gamer, and IGN.

Finally the big day arrived, on May 17th V Rising launched in Early Access with 66 outlets covering the news and around 140+ Early Access reviews/previews being published once the embargo lifted, with positive impressions coming from big sites such as, MeriStation, GamesRadar+, Rock Paper Shotgun and IGN. The Early Access launch opened the floodgates for organic news coverage in the form of guides, patch updates and Steam chart updates, resulting in roughly 2,000 news stories over the next two months.

After the Early Access launch, announcements on how well the game sold came thick and fast: On May 20th it was announced that V Rising sold 500,000 copies in three days, which inspired 130+ stories from sites such as Gry-Online, PC Gamer and USA Today. Five days later it reached 1 million copies sold within its first week of Early Access, an impressive milestone that was covered by over 100 sites such as GameSpot, GamesRadar+, TechRadar, Kotaku, and TheGamer. On May 30th, Stunlock Studio discussed their next steps roadmap, which was covered by 35 outlets such as 3DJuegos, Jeuxvideo, PC Gamer and NME. This was quickly followed by the announcement of 1.5 million copies sold on May 31st with 70+ outlets covering the news such as WCCFtech, Bloody Disgusting, GameSpot and IGN. It took only 17 days for V Rising to hit the heights of 2 million sales, an accomplishment covered by 90+ sites such as Niche Gamer, GamerGen, PC Games, Vandal and Eurogamer.

Amongst all these sales milestones, the last Dev Blog of the year about the Music of V Rising was released on June 16th containing a Q+A with composer ​​Aleksandria Migova with the “Songs of Vardoran” trailer gaining 13 news hits from sites like JeuxOnLine and MMORPG.

V Rising’s Early Access PR campaign could not have gone any better and Stunlock Studios were very pleased with the amount of coverage gained. From the beginning there was lots of interest in the game since its art style, unique take on the survival genre, and pedigree when creating combat mechanics grabbed the hearts (pun intended) of audiences. Consistent communication with their community via dev blogs, updates, Q+As and a strong output of visual assets such as artwork and trailers, hooked newcomers’ attention and grew the fanbase.

Stunlock Studio worked hard to keep the Early Access of the game bug free with a focus on balancing the game mechanics so it would be enjoyable for veterans of the genre and newcomers alike. This meant that once V Rising entered Early Access and people got their hands on the game interest skyrocketed. This was reflected in both coverage and sales, which was also represented by an impressive quantity of positive reviews.

V Rising will go into the full launch campaign with lots of visibility gained and a strong reputation amongst press and players alike.