PAX East 2023 – Romancelvania and Demonschool Preview

While there were a ton of interesting experiences to check out at PAX East sometimes there are games that are just so different and interesting they stop you in your tracks. I was able to check out two such games this year, one is a Bachelor style experience centered around Dracula and the other a strategy game featuring monsters and demons.

Both titles generated a ton of interest as people passed the booths and both were games I chatted with peers and developers as cool games to check out. I love when new and interesting concepts like these pop up and why PAX East is such a great conference to attend.


The concept for this game by The Deep End Games is frankly amazing – A brooding Dracula (or Drac) who, after a century of moping around post-heartbreak, is thrown into a monster reality-dating show, hosted by the Grim Reaper. The whole game is framed around the idea that Drac is being filmed and prodded in his, or her (you can choose Drac’s gender) quest to find their true love.

After years of isolation Drac is not as strong as they once were, so the Grim Reaper setup this reality show to help Drac back on his feet and meet the 12 contestants he may romance, befriend or eliminate. Featuring a cast of creatures ranging from the undead and gods to were creatures and magical humans the cast list is entertaining and deep.

Getting my hands on the game showed me a truly interesting platformer/action experience with a romance/narrative bend that was fascinating. The game itself looks amazing and I was especially impressed with the lighting and animation work, it actually looked lit like a television show and it made the game really stand out as something different.

Exploring Transylvania meeting the contestants is a big part of the experience and they have made a large and diverse series of locations to explore that all look great in the demo. To get stronger Drac must vanquish goons along the way with iconic weapons, elementals, and of course bats on the road to a victorious rampage in this side-scrolling platformer.

In chatting with the developer I was impressed with how passionate he was about this game. His former games were the Bioshock series so he knows his way around games and his wife and partner is a romance novelist and wrote the games story and dialogue. Between the two of them Romancelvania stands out as a great experience.

Romancelvania is available right now on PC via Steam and the Epic Games Store as well as Xbox Series X|S and PlayStation 5 systems.


Another interesting Monster themed game I saw was Demonschool by Necrosoft Games, a game where Faye, a girl from a long line of long-forgotten family of demon hunters, attends university with supernatural secrets. Before long Faye and her friends are thrust into supernatural investigations instead of studying with her peers.

The game is a really interesting take on asynchronous turn based strategy, plan each student’s moves at your leisure, then hit the action button and watch it all play out based on positioning and skills. Strategies can be adjusted based on what each character, or the enemies can do.

It was a very cool experience to not necessarily control the direct actions, but instead position characters to act in a sequence based on their skills and combo potential. Actions can be rewound and the actions and planning are speedy making this a game fun to play and plan.

On top of the strategy components there is a Persona style social component to the game. Foster friendships or fiery romances between the characters, strengthening combo attacks and elemental affinities and uncovering new endings. Faye can also explore extracurricular activities in and around town with a darkly comedic cast of eccentric characters.

I had a great time checking out Demonschool and only found the game because a peer recommended it and I am glad they did! Demonschool will be available on PC via Steam and as well as Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 4|5 and Nintendo Switch platforms.


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