Vampire: The Requiem is a role-playing game published by White Wolf, set in the New World of Darkness, and the successor to the Vampire: The Masquerade line. It was first released in August 2004, together with a new core rule book for the World of Darkness. Although it is an entirely new game, rather than a continuation of the previous editions, it uses many elements from the old game in its construction, including some of the clans and their powers. The game's title is a metaphor for the way vampires within the game view their life.
Although it can be considered a full game in itself, Vampire: The Requiem requires the World of Darkness corebook for use.
The game takes place in modern-day earth where vampires form complex societies hidden from human awareness. Vampires that share common physical powers and qualities group themselves into "clans", but they also join "covenants" along religious, political or philosophical lines (generally, a player's covenant is generally more important to his character than his clan). These groups differ radically in purpose and outlook and are often in conflict, though one principle they agree upon is that they must hide their existence from humans.
Vampires are unliving humans created when a vampire drains a human dry of blood and then feeds the corpse a few drops of its own vampiric blood. This process is deliberate and draining for the sire, so vampires do not procreate often.
Vampires generally dwell in large cities, where they can find plenty of prey and easily remain inconspicuous. Vampires do not need to kill humans to steal blood; humans go into a trance when a vampire feeds on them and do not remember the moment, and a vampire can erase the bite marks it made by licking them. Every evening, their bodies consume a portion of their stored blood in order to rise from their daytime slumber - a vampire will enter an extended period of torpor if it does not have any blood.
Powers, abilities and weaknessesEdit
A vampire's power is roughly measured by his Blood Potency. Regardless of his sire's power, all vampires start off at level 1. Blood Potency increases steadily with age, but can also be boosted by spending experience points or consuming the soul of another vampire (diablerie). As its Blood Potency increases, a vampire can store more blood points and access greater supernatural powers. However, her feeding needs become more stringent as well; the weakest vampires can live on animal blood, but the most powerful vampires can only live on the blood of other vampires. Such powerful vampires who cannot meet this need usually go into prolonged slumber to weaken themselves.
Kindred can use a variety of supernatural powers called Disciplines. These are special abilities associated with their curse which, like their undead bodies, are "fed" in a way by the living blood they take from mortals. Many of the Disciplines provide Kindred with preternatural means of ensuring their continued existence, or of easing the process of hunting and stealing blood from mortals.
Disciplines can be broken down into four categories: common (commonplace among the Kindred and more than one clan has an innate knack for them), uncommon (the proprietary abilities of each of the five clans), covenant (possessed only by a specific covenant and never shared with outsiders), and bloodline (known only to the members of a particular bloodline within a clan). However, each Kindred has the capability to, given a tutor and the proper amount of time (sometimes years for powerful disciplines), learn a discipline that is not natural to their clan or covenant. In game mechanics, the experience point cost for such disciplines is higher than that of a clan discipline innate to a specific Kindred, and given the amount of time in a given storyline necessary to successfully master an other-clan discipline, many players never get the chance to fully master such things.
- Celerity: the ability to move at faster-than-human speeds
- Resilience: the ability to withstand damaging attacks with comparatively minor injuries.
- Vigor: the ability to manifest supernatural strength above and beyond even a vampire's naturally superhuman capabilities.
- Animalism: the power to commune with and command animals.
- Obfuscate: the ability to prevent others from sensing one's self by clouding their minds.
- Auspex: preternatural sensitivity and awareness and the ability to foresee and know things seemingly unknowable.
- Dominate: allows a piercing stare that commands minds and the ability to break the will of others.
- Majesty: grants a seductive or commanding sway of emotions and the predatory manipulation of the weak.
- Nightmare: the power to evoke sheer terror by revealing one's primal nature.
- Protean: grants the ability to assume a variety of forms such as a wolf or a mist.
- Each Clan tends to specialize in one particular "uncommon discipline".
- Coils of the Dragon: Used to cheat the Curse, stripping away limitations and negative effects of the Unliving state (practiced by the Ordo Dracul).
- Crúac: Pagan blood sorcery (practiced by the Circle of the Crone).
- Theban Sorcery': Miraculous magic taught by, or in some interpretations stolen from, an "avatar of God" (practiced by the Lancea Sanctum).
Bloodline (Rare) disciplinesEdit
- The various Rare Disciplines are numerous and wildly diverse. While they are generally only available to their respective bloodlines, and highly specialized, there are a few which provide significant advantages in combat. Most bloodline disciplines cannot be learned by vampires outside of the associated bloodline.
Unlike many fictional portrayals, vampires in Requiem are not repelled by crucifixes, garlic or running water, and they can enter any private domain without invitation. A stake through the heart merely paralyses them. Fire, sunlight and the claws and fangs of supernatural animals inflict terrible injuries that take a lot of time and blood to heal. During the daytime most vampires become catatonic and cannot operate, whether or not they are sheltered from sunlight.
Vampires have many enemies, most from within their own clans and covenants. There are some that stand out as being opposed to Vampire society as a whole, and some of the most prominent of these are vampires themselves. There are only two "enemy only" covenants in the core rulebook:
A loose confederation of Satanists, demon-worshippers and overt miscreants. The Covenant claims that the Damned originate from Hell itself, and exalt in the spread of misery and pain.
They are intended to be more straightforward enemies than other antagonists that might be fought against in The Requiem, as their goals (spreading wanton misery and violence, heedless of whether or not they expose the existence of vampires) are antithetical to nearly any character.
A very mysterious organization, VII is dedicated to the destruction of their own species. They carry out attacks of sabotage and murder against other vampires for mysterious reasons.
In the game, they serve as the shadow antagonists - the monster's monsters. The Storyteller is encouraged to invent his own reasons for VII's agenda.
Chapters that PlayEdit
The following chapters are know to play, previously played, or open to playing the game: