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14 June 2016 @ 02:49 pm
All Clans get unique Disciplines; universalized Potence  
I've been rereading all the Vampire: the Masquerade books lately and it's getting me thinking about running a game (of course). And that leads to tinkering--even if the odds of me running it are very low, I like homebrewing mechanics.

One of the things that's bothered me about Vampire for a while is that the seven Camarilla Clans have four Clans without a unique Discipline, whereas both Sabbat Clans and all the independent Clans have unique Disciplines. This is a legacy of first edition, when only the Camarilla was playable and the other Clans were mysterious enemies in the night with bizarre and frightening powers, but there's no reason for that to continue. As such, I looked at Vampire: the Requiem's big list of Disciplines and I have some ideas for how to change things up a bit:

  • Brujah: Celerity, Praestantia, Presence. Praestantia enhances combat skills, strengthening Brujah's role as rabble-rousing brawlers, and its hint of prescience helps tie into the time-manipulation powers that the True Brujah have. Hey, I like the Trujah.
  • Nosferatu: Animalism, Nightmare, Obfuscate. This one was easy.
  • Toreador: Auspex, Celerity, Xinyao. Xinyao is about manipulating emotions, and that leaves a place for the Toreador as the vampires who are passionate, or at least as passionate as the undead can get. I'd probably rename it Synaesthima (pseudoGreek for "feeling").
  • Ventrue: Constance, Dominate, Presence. Constance is about supernatural willpower and mental fortitude, which ties into the Ventrue's space as the unflinching rulers of the Damned. I'd probably rename it Pertinax (Latin for "steadfast."
So that's done. Yay!

In doing that, though, I realized that I took away Potence from two of the Clans that had it, and that made me realize I could solve another problem. Ghouls get Potence automatically, and I've seen a lot of debates about whether vampires whose backstory had them as ghouls should mean they automatically get Potence as a Clan Discipline, or could start with Potence. Well, if ghouls get Potence, Potence is inherent in vitae, right? So why not make it universal among vampires and replace one Discipline for everyone else who has it?

That led to this:

  • Blood Brothers: Celerity, Fortitude, Sanguinis. No one is ever going to play one of these anyway.
  • Gargoyles: Fortitude, Obfuscate, Visceratika. More likely to be played than Blood Brothers, but not by much. Obfuscate helps explain why giant stony winged monsters can exist and not have everyone panic.
  • Giovanni: Dominate, Fortitude, Necromancy. That gives them two Disciplines in common with the Cappadocians, their original parent.
  • Lasomba: Auspex, Dominate, Obtenebration. I know the Tzimisce already have Auspex, but I think Auspex fits the Lasombra too. They can see in the dark and into your mind, which fits them being incredibly manipulative along with Dominate.
  • True Brujah: Obfuscate, Presence, Temporis. As with gargoyles, Obfuscate ties into how they're super secret and unknown, as well as being dispassionate observers and scholars. And giving them two Disciplines in common with the Setites helps confuse their origins a bit, which I like.
  • Warrior Setites: The entry already says "A mortal Embraced by a warrior Setite becomes a 'normal' member of the line (that is, learning Obfuscate as a Clan Discipline) unless trained as a warrior from childe-hood" so no changes here are needed. They just focus more on Potence.
There are some Laibon legacies with Potence as well, but most of those are kind of a missed opportunity anyway since they're just obviously "[Clan], but in Africa!"

Huh. I actually really like this. I know some people don't like the proliferation of unique powers since it pushes V:tM toward superheroes with fangs, but we all know that's really what we want from it anyway. And none of these powers are Kineticism, so I'm already one up on White Wolf.
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