Adapting World of Darkness
Old World of Darkness
These are the Children of Caine, the first murderer, punished for the crime and denying three times his chance to be redeemed. Thus he
The first Generation are known as the Childer, and there are only three entities.
The Second Generation are known as the Childe and they were only 5 of them.
Third Generation The Antediluvian are the first generation to sire actual clans and they spread across the world Only 13 are left.
Fourth Known as the Jyhad, -The 100 original Cainites born into the 13 Clans, they were slowly wiped out over time by their decedents, almost none are left.
5th generations are known as the Methuselahs, to almost all Cainites this is the oldest that you can go.
6th generation, known as the Amaranth, these creatures are the oldest Cainites who are still active in politics, often style themselves as the oldest possible.
7th generation-Known as the Inconnu
8th generation- Known as the Upyr
9th Generation- Known as Enochians, they are the most popular sires, as they are powerful enough to feel like they have a chance against the Elders
10th Generation- One of the most popular and ideal generations, they have recently become a power in their own right. Known as Draugr
11th generation, known as achillae are the vast majority of vampires involved in actual court politics.
12th Known as Neonates, they have a degree of power but really are just above average
13th Generation- Known as Fledglings, these are your standard issue vampires
14th Generation- The Caitiff, these creatures have no ties to any clan, and are just…normal. They are very weak.
15th Generation- Known as Thin Blooded, they are sterile vampires who seem to herald the arrival of Gehenna
Essentially the Cainites are living in secret since they are fairly small in number, the total population is only about 5,000, including thin bloods and reproduction is tricky, whats worse is that they get killed off at such an alarming rate that it simply isn’t worth it. Thus they are constantly trying to hide their existence, while discovering what their true purpose is. They are divided into three groups, Camarilla, Anarchs, and the Sabbot.
The Camarilla were formed as an organization to bring together the Cainites togher in order to maintain the Masquerade and are the dominant Cainite faction. They emerged in reaction to the Great Inquisition where the Cainites were almost wiped out. They are extremely conservative and pro older generation (though not Third Generation) and are the greatest maintainers of the traditions. They are the most opposed to the Beast, and so embraced the path of humanity, keeping extremely strict and tightly run traditions in order to maintain their humanity. Sadly this also makes them extremely conservative and corrupt.
The clans that make up the Camarilla are
There are also the Low CLans, which include the
The Awakened (Mage Awakening)
Enfant (Wraith the Oblivion)
When there are giant massive genocides or other forms of death, enfants are creatures who were able to avoid the final fate of death, at the cost of the world itself. Every day they remain around, they drain a little bit of life from them, increasing the negative energy of the entire world
New World of Darkness
The Lost (Changeling)
Beastlings (BRoadbacks, Runnerswifts, Hunterhearts, Skitterskulks, Steepscrambler, swimmerskins, venombites, windwings, Cleareyes, Coldscales, Roteaters, Truefiends, Riddleseekers)
Darklings (Antiquarians, Gravewights, Leechfingers, Mirrorskins, Tunnelgrubs, Lurkgliders, Moonborn, Mightsingers,, Palewraiths, Razorhands, Whisperwisps, Lurkers, Illes, Pishacha, and Skogsra.
Animatest (Elementals) (Airtouched, Earthbones, Fireheart, Manikin, Snowskin, Waterborn, Woodblood, Blightbent, Levinquick, Metalflesh, Sandharrowed. (Apsaras, Ask-wee-da-eed, Di-cang)
Fairest (Bright ones, Dancers, Flowering, Muses, Draconics, Flamesirens, Polychromatic, Shadowsouls, Telluric, Minstrels, Romancers, Larcenists, PLaymates.) (Gandharva, Seducers, Weisse Frau)
Hongrios (Ogre)- (Farwalkers, Gargantuans, Gristlegrinders, Stonebones, Water-Dweller,, Bloodbrutes, Corpsegrinders, Renders, Witchteeth) (Daitya, Oni, Trolls)
Wizened- (Artists, Brewers, Chatelains, Chirurgeons, Oracles, Smiths, Soldiers, Woodwalkers, Authors, Drudges, Gameplayers, Miners, Inventors, Fatemakers) (Gremlins, Pamarindo, Thussers)
Courts- Summer, Spring, Autumn, Winter, North, South, East, West, Day, Night, Dawn, and Dusk) ).
Wretched (Frankensteins), Galateids, Osirans, Tammuz, Ulgan, Zeka, Unfleshed, Extempore, Constructs.
Aurum, Cuprum, Ferrum, Mercurius, Stannum, Aes, Argentum, Cobalus, Plumbum, Centimani.
Rules for vampire The Requiem
Underlying Vampire: The Requiem are the rumbling
lusts of the Beast. Despite the suavity of any
character’s political maneuvers, a set of urges beneath
the surface would disgust a jackal and give pause to a
hungry shark. The Beast is inchoate, incomprehensible,
insensate to reason — it’s a force that makes
mockery of anything Kindred try to accomplish
through logic, or cooperation or moderation.
What if the Beast weren’t there?
What if, instead of the rude promptings of a raw but
unsophisticated animal, there was something icily rational,
possessed of the same urges but pursuing them with a
temperate disdain for the ethics and morality of humankind?
What if there were a passenger in your skull — articulate,
intelligent, inescapably reasonable and desiring
nothing more than to feed off humankind forever?
What if, instead of the Beast, Kindred faced the Other?
What the Other Is
Upon Embrace, every neonate Kindred develops a second
voice, privy to every idea that enters her mind and
able to speak in her very thoughts. The Other sometimes
acts sympathetic, sometimes takes an antagonistic
stance immediately and sometimes is aloof and gnomic.
It encourages its “host” — the original personality possessed
by the vampire when alive — to feed, to kill and
to survive. The Other’s priorities are pure Freudian id, in
that the Other seeks complete satiety at all times and personal
safety, as far as is consistent with perpetual feeding.
Anything that does not contribute to consumption and
self-protection is questioned, criticized and ridiculed.
The Other is relentless in pointing out the flaws of
its host’s friends, save when they are targets for its thirst
or useful to protect it. It is similarly ruthless with anything
the host believes in, takes hope from or loves —
beyond a safe haven and the next meal.
The Other knows everything the host knows — and
perhaps a bit more. It can provide instruction in all the
physical Disciplines and in the host Kindred’s clan Disciplines.
The Other may also tease its host with cryptic
hints about the vampire race’s history, purpose and ultimate
source. The Other can teach, but at a price.
Always, a terrible price.
Furthermore, the Other may just be lying. All Others
are utterly inscrutable liars and sociopathically capable
of telling their hosts what they want to hear in
order to erode their Humanity.
That is the unspoken third goal of every Other: to reduce
its host’s Humanity to the point that the Other can take
over completely, casting aside the scruples and human softness
of its once-living jailer like so much soiled toilet tissue.
The Advantages The Beast is a neat idea and provides some juicy
roleplaying fodder, but the Other offers different and
equally interesting alternatives.
First off, some Storytellers may find a setting with
the Other more intriguing or simply plays to their
the plot into the last century. At this point, the stories of
the chronicle become about surviving Ventrue attacks, defending
resources and trying to strike back against the aggressors,
as well as elders jockeying for position within the
house as Urzica seems ready to go into torpor. Bootlegging,
having running fights with gangsters using tommy guns,
busting up police barricades and leading the locals in civil
unrests against Ventrue-controlled banks and businesses all
make good stories during this stage.
The final phase of the chronicle moves into the nearmodern
era with both houses on their last legs. Resources
should be cut down, allies murdered off and Retainers
tracked down and killed by hired mortal assassins. At
this point in the chronicle, stories center around three
things: killing the last of the Lords, surviving Urzica’s
madness and trying to find a place in the world as the
remains of the house’s power come tumbling down under
a combined assault of Lupines, new Ventrue and
Gangrel families and the mortal power structure.chronicles
strengths. To persuade a player that his character is at
risk of being subsumed by the Beast, the Storyteller
needs strong descriptive instincts, so that she can create
a vivid impression of an immaterial emotional
battle. The calm Other doesn’t operate that way but
through dialogue. If you prefer dialogue to description,
you may find the Other a better way to make your point.
Secondly, the Other allows the Storyteller more finesse
and precision when presenting the vampire condition
to the players. The Other whispering in the character’s
mind, “Wouldn’t it be easier to just kill him and stick
the body in the trunk? I can show you how to hide it so
the cops will never know. Lots of people go missing every
year. You think anyone’s going to care? It’ll be a week
before it gets past the point of his boss thinking he’s on a
bender . . . . ” is more direct. Suggesting bad impulses is
one thing. Presenting someone with a manageable, bullet-point
plan for evil is something else again.
Additionally, the Other’s self-preservation urges give
the Storyteller an option when players are about to
chart a disastrous course without packing the Common
Sense Merit. The Other is a perpetual critic, so mocking
a dumb plan that could leave them all in ashes is
hardly out of place for the Other. If they don’t listen,
they can’t say they weren’t warned. If they do listen,
then it’s established that sometimes that evil counselor
has their best interests at heart . . . .
Beyond the practical benefits of playing to dialogue
strengths and permitting more direct input from the Storyteller,
using the Other alters the game on a thematic level.
Kindred saddled with the Beast always have an excuse. “I
didn’t mean to kill her, but the Beast, man, I just got carried
away!” With the Other, there’s a different kind of pressure.
Now, instead of pressure to strike a balance with ghastly
urges, there is the pressure to defend and explain your own
decisions. Instead of “a Beast I am lest a Beast I become,”
the dilemma is now answering the Other’s hectoring query,
“I suppose you have a better idea?” all night, every night.
Instead of operating at an emotional level, this takes
the game to a more cerebral level. Characters can’t just
do what they feel. They no longer lead unexamined
lives: not only are they unalive, they’re constantly under
scrutiny. Justifying their actions becomes a much
higher priority — unless they succumb to the Other’s
nihilistic rationales and leak out all their Humanity.
The thematic changes benefit players as well. Some
players are less skilled at Grand Guignol dramatic posturing.
Arguing though — that may be more familiar
and comfortable than portraying angst or horror or intense
regret. Instead of concentrating on the literary
elements of describing the character’s remorse or unease,
the player can engage the theatrical angle of portraying
emotion through speech.
A good horror game pushes the players’ comfort zones,
but this should be done with the game’s content, not
the tools of play. For some players, the Other is a more
transparent and natural-feeling way of engaging with
what it really means to be a blood-drinking monster.
The easier it is to engage, the deeper players can get
into the dilemma. It’s that simple.
How To Do It
To use the Other in your chronicle, all you have to do
is periodically insert a comment into the character’s brain
on behalf of its wormy skullmate. You lean over to the
player and say, “Your Other speaks up, whispering, ‘This
is stupid. They’re going to pick a fight with those Invictus
guys, and for what? Over a point of honor? Screw it.’”
It’s not hard to do the Other, but it is easy to overdo.
Kindred constantly feel the urges of the Beast, but the
Beast is not constantly the focus of the game. Similarly,
though the Other comments often, most comments can
be taken for granted. You only need to vocalize what the
Other is saying when it’s trying to make a particular point
or is in an intense conflict with the host.
In this vein, it’s a good idea to only really have the
Other badgering one or two characters per scene. Make
sure the other players understand that their Others are
piping up periodically, but a constant repetition of Other
insults and criticisms would get boring — for them and
for you. As a rule, the Other only needs to speak up when
(1) it has a strong objection to what’s going on, (2) it’s
going to say something that’s unexpected or (3) there’s
meaningful and significant development of plot or character
to be explored through the dialogue.
Some conversations with the Other can be kept secret,
through passing notes. This can create tension
when a flurry of notes indicates an internal struggle
(which the characters perceive as an uncanny silence
with moving lips and twitching expressions) to which
the players are not privy.
Alternately, groups with a lot of trust can keep the
dialogues open. This can be very entertaining. It’s fun
for the player whose character is defending himself, and
the other players get the passive pleasure of seeing that
character develop — possibly in ways that a cagey vampire
wouldn’t reveal through open action. As long as
the group is able to keep players’ knowledge and goals
separate from characters’, this can work fine. Just make
sure that the dialogues are quick and punchy, and that
everyone who enjoys debating with their personal devil
gets a chance to do it.
What’s in It for the Characters
The Other should tempt, and there’s no force behind
temptation without something the characters want. The
Other can offer any or all of the following:
• Discipline instruction. The Other can explain all
the physical Disciplines and all of a vampire’s clan Disciplines.
Learning a new Discipline still costs experiencechronicles 61chapter two
points, but, through a bargain with the Other, the Kindred
doesn’t have to trust a mentor who is, by definition,
a self-interested predator with its own agenda.
• Aid in tough times. This is described in full on p.
63 under “Riding the Wave.” When in great danger,
the Kindred can temporarily surrender to the Other in
return for the dubious “benefits” of Imprisonment.
• Advice. The eternally calm Other may notice clues
the character missed or think through puzzles that leave
its emotionally distracted host baffled. The price for these
“hints” is likely to be very high, however, if the character
is pursuing something the Other regards as foolishness.
• Wisdom. Which is, of course, actually any plausible
lie that the Other can invent to advance its
agenda. Others can’t mystically communicate with one
another, they don’t have any greater insight into the
Kindred condition than their host (unless you, as Storyteller,
decide they do . . .) and they’re no more privy
to dank ancient secrets than anyone else. But they understand
their hosts intimately, they know what their
hosts want to hear and they’ve often got a good sense
of how much their hosts trust them and how much reverse
psychology the Others can apply.
That last one deserves particular attention. Neonate Kindred
are often desperate for answers about the meaning of
their condition, and Others who play their cards close to
the vest can offer answers — often answers heavily tailored
to their individual host, and intended solely to get their
hosts on board with the Other’s program of constant feeding,
safety and isolation from the Danse Macabre.
Virtues and Vices get heavy play in these myths. Some
examples for each Virtue and Vice follow.
Justice: Vampires serve to redress the wrongs of humanity.
The wealthy majority is willfully ignorant of
the sufferings of the most miserable few, and only violence
is sufficient to snap them out of their TV-sport
ute-stock option daze. We’re the wake-up call.
Faith: We were created by God as His inscrutable
agents. Think about a time traveler, who could send
someone back to kill Hitler back when he was still a
penniless artist. To a contemporaneous observer, that
would look blackly evil, but what a greater evil it would
avert! This is our role, and alas we must pursue it blindly.
Charity: The great tragedy of the Kindred condition
is that this curse intensifies over time. Your hunger,
regrettably, will only grow. When that happens, the only
solution is to create a new vampire, thereby halving
your hunger at the cost of instilling it in someone else.
Try not to be angry at your sire. She knew her limits.
She was about to lose it. She had to curse someone,
and she knew you had the inner strength to fight the
curse and limit your harm . . . .
Temperance: The cosmos is laden with challenges
of balance, and the Kindred condition a bigger challenge
than most. Yes, you are cursed with need and
weakness, and the temptation to do terrible things is
strong. But if you can place your hunger and vulnerability
in check, you can use your extended span of years
to do great things as well. You just have to stay safe and
keep your hunger from overwhelming you.
Fortitude: You feel the evil within you and believe that
self-destruction would end it. No. If you destroy yourself,
you free it. Vampires are the cages of bloodlust, and when
these frail human bodies break, that bloodlust seeps out,
immaterial, able to infect and incite normal people. You
think it’s hellish to have a lot of vampires? Look at places
without enough — Berlin during the Nazi years, Serbia,
the Congo . . . . Chicken out if you want, I can’t stop you.
But understand you’re doing the world no favor if you do.
Hope: The Devil put this wretched curse of vampirism
upon the world, but the Lord has given us the tools to
turn that curse around. It’s a long, hard path, but I can
guide you out of this hell of suffering and blood into a
blessed state called Golconda. The first step is to learn to
keep yourself safe. The second is to keep away from other
vampires — they’ll just betray and confuse you . . . .
Prudence: When do you think it’s easier to think
clearly, when you’re hungry or when you’re full?
Mmmm. And do you suppose you’ll be able to contain
your problems if you’re in constant danger of discovery?
Maybe not? I don’t think so either. So first off, let’s
get you somewhere safe, your own place, where we can
really discuss things . . . .
As for the more negative personality traits, they’re
even easier to use . . . .
Wrath: All the evil in the world is yours to punish. This
is your role in the divine scheme — to judge and execute.
You face a smorgasbord of selfish delicacies. Dig in.
Envy: Normal people, human people, are trapped in
systems of injustice with only a few short years in which
to try to keep themselves alive and comfortable. They
can never really change things, make them just, bring
down the fat cats. That’s what we’re for. We’ve got the
span of centuries to break the oppressor’s rod, and the
power and appetites for it.
Gluttony: You have pierced the first veil of a cosmic
illusion, rising above the unenlightened and casting off
the shackles of age. In time, with my guidance, your every
limit will fall, leaving you as the god you once were
and could become again. The first stage is to understand
that everything in the world is you, but that your rightful
sovereignty was taken. Now, you’re waking up and
gradually regaining the ability to steal back your true
power from the drones who surround you. Only you are
truly real. The rest of them are powerless until you free
them by reclaiming your vital essence . . . .
Greed: There is a limited amount of life-energy in the
cosmos, and we have arisen to redress the great imbalance.
Currently, it’s spread too thin, which is why there’s overpopulation,
famine, war and all the rest of it. By gatheringchronicles
this essence, or “Vitae” into ourselves, we correct the flow
and allow it to purify itself. It looks nasty in the microscale,
but think big. You’ve got eternity, after all.
Lust: Being a vampire is as natural as being a hummingbird.
If a flower could think, it might resent the
bee that steals its nectar, but that same bee pollinates
the flower. In the same way, by feeding on humankind
we transmit minute traces of pathogens, strengthening
their immune systems. Nature evolves us to take pleasure
in what’s good for us, right? That’s why feeding —
and being fed on — feel so good. It’s nature’s reward.
You don’t want to be unnatural, do you?
Pride: This fate would not have found you were it
not your destiny. Only a few from each generation are
chosen to shoulder this burden, and also to enjoy the
power and privilege of immortality. You are set apart
from living humankind, but you are also set above.
Harm them or not as you choose, but understand that
it is your choice, deeded to you by God.
Sloth: You exist apart from humanity, culled out by your
fear of fire, for a reason. You are meant to be above, aloof,
disengaged. Otherwise, your power and hunger would lead
to tragedy. Therefore, you are best served by keeping back,
not getting involved, feeding when and where it won’t
cause comment and otherwise staying isolated. That keeps
them safe from you and you safe from them.
Keep in mind that these sorts of ploys aren’t just for
creation lies. At all times, the Other tries to capitalize
on these elements of the character’s personality, in order
to manipulate the host.
– LIES MY OTHER TOLD ME
At various times, a crafty Other might try any of
the following “creation myths” on a gullible host.
• “I’m the spirit of the original Wandering Jew,
cursed for mocking Christ while he carried the
cross. That’s why my blood of death and addiction
is a parody of Christ’s blood of life and release.
You heard ‘em talking about Longinus? Sounds
like he’s in the same boat.”
• “I am the Crone, Kali Yuga, the Magna Mater,
Atropos the severer of lives — I am all these, and
those blind hypocrites in the Circle refuse to admit
it. Instead of looking within themselves for
answers, they look anywhere else in a search for
myths, philosophies, ecstasies that only serve to
occlude what they claim to illumine.”
• “In every soul there is a despised and rejected
element. That’s me. I’m you. I’m just the parts of
you that you don’t want to acknowledge — the
hungry part, the selfish part, the part that keeps
you safe. Usually, those functions have biological
support — endocrine reactions, hard-wired panic
in the brain, adrenaline and all that. But you’re a
corpse now. The biological survival instinct is gone,
just like your ability to reproduce or store fat for
winter. Instead, you get me. Or rather, you get
• “While you bear a heavy curse, it’s not without
relief. Though burdened by hunger and the fear
of fire, you have been blessed with me, your angel
guide, to help you seek a better path through your
– What’s in It for the Other
The Other has its needs and the character is standing
in the way. To pursue those goals, both short and long
term, the Other is willing to bargain. The heading above
catalogues what the Other can offer the Kindred. Here’s a
laundry list of some simple things it might ask in return.
• Willpower. The Other may simply ask the character to
listen to it, without interruption or argument, for half an
hour, and then not discuss its position afterwards. You don’t
need to go through a half-hour monologue with the player,
just give an outline of practical selfish nihilism, perhaps
describing how washed-out and depressed it leaves the character
feeling. In game terms, she just lost a Willpower point.
This doesn’t directly strengthen the Other, but it makes
the character less likely to resist Imprisonment.
• Freedom. The Other may bargain for 12 hours in control
of the body. (Twelve waking hours, of course.) The
character is agreeing to become Imprisoned, without the
escape valve offered by Riding the Wave. What the Other
does with this liberty depends on circumstances. If the
Other thinks good behavior will yield future jaunts, the
predator behaves selfishly and practically, but goes out of
is way to spare mortals and not antagonize other Kindred.
If the Other thinks this is its one and only chance, the
Other goes for broke, alienating any friends or allies who
might be distracting the character from more important
matters of feeding and becoming a hermit.
• Chores. If unable to get control of the body, the
Other might settle for promises to behave in a more
circumspect fashion, shore up the haven and remain
lipping-full with blood. Typically, the Other won’t come
across with any reward until such promises are fulfilled.
Kindred governed by the Beast have a limited set of
circumstances that drive their better natures under its
brute directness. Those same circumstances can cause
Other-ridden Kindred to cave in to their alien tormentor.
But although the same stimuli (wrath, terror or starvation)
provoke the Other, the reactions of the Other
are very different from those of the Beast.
Vampires who fall to the Beast often enter fugue states
in which they don’t remember their actions. It’s different
when the Other takes over. When that occurs, Kindred
see and experience what their bodies are doing, but are
unable to feel any emotional reaction or exercise any control
over the actions taken by the Other. It’s been compared
to being outside your body and watching, numbed,chronicles 63chapter two
as someone else does things with it. For the few who’ve
experienced both, it’s quite similar to the dissociation experienced
by schizophrenics during the traumas that activate
their condition. Vampires call it “Imprisonment.”
Predator’s Taint: There is no longer any Predator’s
Taint. Vampires recognize one another, and the Other
dislikes other vampires, but not to the point of starting
General Systems for Imprisonment: These replace
the systems for frenzy found on pp. 178–179 of Vampire:
The Other’s Imprisonment of a vampire’s identity has
the following effects:
• The vampire ignores wound penalties to dice pools,
until the wounds put the vampire in torpor.
• No derangements penalize the Other.
• The Other ignores Vinculums, though, if the host
is addicted to Vitae, that problem remains.
• The Other cannot spend Willpower. The imprisoned
host may spend a Willpower point to briefly alter
the Other’s behavior, as can be done with the Beast.
See pp. 180–181 of Vampire: The Requiem.
• The vampire operates in all ways as if her Composure
and Resolve have risen to 6.
• The vampire’s aura vanishes. There are simply no
colors there to be seen.
Resisting Imprisonment: Imprisonment is resisted
exactly like Frenzy. It’s the same extended roll, the same
use of Willpower, the same Resolve + Composure pool,
the same number of successes needed and the same situational
modifiers. The only differences are what happens
when the character fails, and that, in this case, she’s
got the vocalizations of the Other nagging in her mind’s
ear. (Note to Storytellers: There’s no need to impose
additional penalties to concentration due to the Other’s
silent verbal abuse. It’s just as bad, in its own way, as the
imposed emotions of the Beast. But no worse.)
When resistance fails, the Other takes charge, typically
for a scene or two.
Anger Prison: When something has so provoked the
Kindred that his human self’s rational responses are
exhausted, the Other takes over. Its reaction depends
entirely on the nature of the enraging stimulus. If it’s
human (i.e., “food”) and there’s no overwhelming risk
of injury, the Other kills and eats it. Problem solved. It
doesn’t matter whether the human in question was an
early-teen Peeping Tom, the Kindred’s mortal mother
with her intrusive questions or a friend’s cocky ghoul.
The Other kills, feeds and returns control to its host —
probably with some cleanup suggestions.
Snapping with anger at something that’s not food usually
prompts the Other to leave, if that’s an option. The
Other does what’s required. If a group of Acolytes are torturing
a member of the Lancea Sanctum, trying to get
him to reveal the location of his beloved mentor, they
might well attempt to get his Other to Imprison him. The
Other doesn’t give a crap about the mentor and cheerfully
sells his ass out for a ticket out of a sticky situation.
Anger at immaterial circumstances — coming home
and finding one’s haven destroyed, for example — simply
prompts a calm and measured response from the
Other. It goes and finds somewhere to sleep out the
day, usually with the brutal efficiency that characterizes
Fear Prison: As with anger, the Other takes over and
attempts to calmly extricate itself from the fiery predicament
in question — even if that means leaving friends
or trusted comrades in the lurch. In cases in which the
Man was overestimating the danger, the Other may well
take advantage of its temporary liberty to feed in its preferred
amoral matter. If the Other isn’t hungry and doesn’t
have direct peril to distract it, look out. The Other is
quite likely to set about sabotaging any endeavors of
which it disapproves or regards as a waste of effort (meaning,
anything that distracts from a Requiem of safe satiety).
This often includes derailing attempts to gain Merits
such as Status, Mentor, Allies or Contacts.
Hunger Prison: Here’s where the Other really shines.
In a Wassail, the Other’s reaction is perfectly predictable.
The Other calculates who, among those nearest,
can most safely be overpowered and sucked. Then it
attacks without warning or mercy. It’s not dumb enough
to go after a weak mortal who has 10 bodyguards when
there’s a less weak (but solo) Kindred nearby — unless
the Other has got Nightmare or some other Discipline
with which to scatter the protectors. Best of all, the
Other likes to feed from best friends. It almost universally
kills them, even if it can sate itself and leave them
alive. After all, if those friends are mortals, they’ve just
become a liability (or, from the Other’s perspective, an
even bigger liability than “friends” are already). If they’re
Kindred, the last thing the Other wants is to compete
with a Vinculum for influence over the host.
Riding the Wave: There are many times when a host
and an Other are in full accord about the right action to
take. After all, “don’t die” and “get food” are high priorities
for every sensible Kindred. When a character wants
to get her Other’s assistance during a time of great hunger
or danger, the character can attempt an alliance. (The
Other cannot be harnessed to attack one’s enemies unless
they pose an immediate and unmistakable threat.
Without those qualities, there’s just no motivation for
the Other to help.) Allying with the Other works such
as “Riding the Wave,” as described on p. 181 of Vampire:
The Requiem. The character spends Willpower
and rolls Resolve + Composure in an attempt to bind
the Other to her goals for a short period. If she succeeds,
she can end the Imprisonment when she chooses. Others
under this sort of compulsion usually play it fairly
straight: they know they’ve got nothing to gain by beingchronicles
contentious, since the hosts can snap out of it when they
want. The Others, therefore, cooperate as much as is
congruent with feeding and safety. That said, if the Other
thinks there’s a chance for more Imprisonment checks,
it may balk or start actions that force the host to terminate
the Imprisonment while the problem is still immanent.
That way the Other gets a better chance of taking
control against the host’s will and having greater freedom
to improve its situation.
Humanity 0: When Humanity bottoms out, the Other
wins. The Kindred goes from being semi-human to being
an utterly emotionless engine of consumption. The slang
name given to such creatures is “snowman.” If armed with
Dominate or Majesty, the Other may let vessels live simply
because it’s safer and less hassle that way. If not, well,
there are more where they came from. Otherwise, the fullyactualized
snowman Other typically stalks and kills a human
every three or four nights to keep the gas tank full
and spends the rest of the time improving its haven and
concealing its crimes. Young snowmen have zero interest
in other Kindred, unless those Kindred are horning in on
their turf. When that happens, the snowman’s usual reaction
is to try and negotiate with the Kindred and get him
to back off. This often works, since the snowman has a
pretty good insight into the Kindred’s Other and can play
to its urges. If that fails, the snowman most often nods
regretfully, backs off and either diablerizes the intruder as
soon as is reasonably possible or moves away entirely with
no regrets. The path chosen depends solely on risk assessment.
Snowmen, like Others, have no pride. They have
only hunger and the urge to continue.
Snowmen refrain from the Danse Macabre and would
therefore seem to be good neighbors — indeed, many
Kindred prefer to deal with young snowmen because
they’re not at all hard to figure out. But, eventually, young
snowmen turn into old snowmen and, as anyone with
sufficient Blood Potency, they need provender you can’t
abduct from any old run-down bus station. They need
Kindred prey and, given their absolute ruthlessness, their
sociopathic lack of anything to threaten or blackmail
them with and their resistance to non-lethal Disciplines
(Resolve and Composure at 6, remember?) they can be
a significant problem indeed.
What It Means
Horror often confronts us with issues of control. In
Vampire: The Requiem, the contrast between what
characters can and cannot control is often significant.
While they may have Disciplines that allow them to
be irresponsible slavers ruling adoring mortal herds, they
are themselves subject to the whims of political superiors
or elders who are increasingly alien.
Being helpless is frightening. That’s what the Beast
is all about — a set of repulsive animal desires that rise
up and overwhelm you despite your most fervent wishes
and efforts.chronicles 65chapter two
On the other hand, Vampire is a game of personal
horror. It’s about being horrified by what your character
does and the choices she makes. The other side of that
coin is: having power can be frightening. The only thing
worse than doing something awful that’s not really your
fault, is doing something awful that is your fault.
The Beast is brutish and shocking. The Other is insidious
and corrupting. That’s the difference.
What It Means for the Characters
Characters in a chronicle with Others are less likely to go
completely berserk, break Masquerade, and be targeted for
destruction because they lack self-control. That’s the good
news. The bad news is that if they lack self-control, the
Other is going to take over and pursue their most selfish
interests in the most horrifying of ways. That’s the bad news.
The Other wants to survive and feed, and, to that
extent, it’s the characters’ ally. But it wants the characters
to be utterly self-sufficient and relentlessly practical,
which means that it attacks (overtly or subtly)
anything the characters seek that is more noble or
worthy than a full belly and a safe haven. To the Other,
knowledge is pointless, friendship is a liability, art has
no meaning, self-esteem is just vanity, faith is selfdelusion
and hope is absurd.
Characters fight the Beast because its urges are ultimately
destructive, and because any but the stupidest
Kindred can see how the Beast is bad for them. With
the Other, that’s just not so. A lazy Kindred can listen
to his Other and get help with staying hidden, staying
safe and staying inert. He just can’t ever accomplish
The price is existential suicide. All the Other takes
is everything that makes him himself.
What It Means for the Setting
The Masquerade is more solid, for one thing. Instead
of having the Beast urging every pinhead neonate to
do the stupid thing at every opportunity, they’re instead
being urged to do the smart (albeit self-centered)
thing. Kindred who snap don’t go out in blazes of crimson
glory; they quietly settle down to become cozy
neighborhood murderers with all the imagination of a
Because the repercussions of Kindred snapping the
leash are so much less severe, the Danse Macabre is
far less concerned with control and surveillance. Also,
the constant counterpoint of the Other has, over the
years, sapped much of the covenants’ will to struggle
with one another, even over points of ideology. Social
score counts much more, because struggles don’t
have the Beast fueling the fire — they have the Other
pissing on it.
All this aligns to encourage an active chronicle, rather
than a reactive one. In a standard game, waking up a
lazy player is possible, by threatening her with inter- or
intra-covenant rivals, a Beast freakout or mortal hunters.
Now, only that last one remains, and while witchfinders
can make a good counterpoint to the main plot,
because they play up the helpfulness of the Other’s selfishness,
the primary goals of the chronicle should be
player-defined. With the Beast, there’s never a dull moment.
The Other demands a bit more of players, is a bit
more challenging, but thereby can be more fulfilling.
What It Means for the Chronicle
Characters faced with an Other have to set meaningful
goals and pursue them. If they value nothing beyond their
own survival, the Other has almost won — and the game
is going to get very boring. For the device of the Other to
contribute to the chronicle, the characters must be pursuing
something meaningful, despite the practical but souldeadening
advice of their permanent, full-time critic. The
question the Other poses is, “Beyond survival, what’s it all
about?” The answer the Other offers is, “Nothing.” It’s
the characters’ job to give the lie to that.
The pressure of the Other is to quit, give up and settle
for mere comfort. Characters who are unwilling to do
that should believe in something. It could be a religion,
a political cause or their quest for Golconda. They
could seek meaning through art, through some sort of
campaign for social justice (either within or outside the
Danse Macabre) or simply through the love and companionship
of friends or family.
The Other mocks those things. The job of the Storyteller
is to endanger them, forcing the characters to
either defend their principles and beliefs, or admit that
the Other is right. Every time the characters stick to
their path, the Storyteller has to raise the stakes, push
the envelope and make the conflict more intense. If
they’ve defended their family when it’s in danger from
the outside, what happens when there are internal problems,
even an insoluble one like a divorce or a cousin
who beats his wife? If they’re cleaning up their shitty
neighborhood by kicking out all the drug dealers, what
do they do when a developer wants to buy up half the
houses and raze them for luxury condos — something
great for half the neighborhood and lousy for the rest?
The climax of a chronicle of this type is when you
give the characters a truly pernicious dilemma — one
in which the only clear options are to surrender their
beliefs or to defend them through cruelty, murder or
some other moral atrocity. If they do it, they’ve paid a
terrible price for their beliefs, and even the Other despises
them for it. If they give in, the Other wins.
If they can think of a third option, they’re geniuses.
That’s fine, but make them earn it. If they’re going to
win, and win clean, they’d better play the hell out of
the game. When the Other is riding shotgun, anything
you have to settle for should feel like a loss.