View Full Version : Playing Vampire: The Masquerade for the first time

2010-08-04, 08:15 PM
Several years ago in college I played this a few times, but not really enough to get a firm grasp of things. My gaming group is getting a little bored with the 4e D&D stuff all the time so thought I would grab some books, make up a setting, and play some V:tM since I know that none of them have ever done this before.

So, since I have never game mastered this either, I'm hoping for some ideas from the veterans out there. How do you make the game world spooky like it is supposed to be?

Obviously a group of vampires meeting in the bar to go around adventuring doesn't exactly work in this setting.. how do you deal with actually getting a group of anti-heros to work together in the game? What motivates them to work together or for me anyway - what kind of story or plot should I steer them towards? Should I encourage them to be all recently turned vampires or have a mix of established / new for their first time in the setting?

Thanks for the tips! Oh, and what books should I definately get?

Lycan 01
2010-08-04, 08:38 PM
Vampire: The Masquerade or Vampire: The Requiem? :smallconfused:

I've only played the newest one, The Requiem IIRC. I was a freshly turned Nosforatu, a vampire of only two weeks. The rest of the party ranged from decades to over a century old. The female Ventrue, my GF, was just trying to do business. The male Ventrue vaguely knew her, and he also knew the Gangrel played by his girlfriend. And the 5th guy, a Daeva, was a total stranger, who didn't even want to be part of the group and did his best to mess with us and screw up the plot, even threatening to kill me several times because he found me annoying.

The Storyteller had a mission for us to work together on, but we actually spent most of the game freeroaming and just roleplaying our characters out. The guy Ventrue took me on as his apprentice, and he tried to teach me about being a vampire, which resulted in lots of hilarious situations and several Twilight references. I threw a dead cat at him at one point...

The game fell apart during the second session, though. The Gangrel was basically raped, which made the Ventrue guy's player angry/uncomfortable because it was his GF's character, causing him to quit. The Gangrel also quit over it, because she was tired of her characters always being targeted for prostitution, molestation, rape, et cetera in games run by any Storyteller that wasn't me. Me and my GF were just trying to mind our own business and have fun being vampires. And the 5th guy made the game awkward by using his Daeva status to always talk about creepy sexual stuff and trying to torture a prisoner with his pet Gerbil, Mr. Squeekums, whom he kept just for kinky purposes. In fact, he sold the Gerbil to the NPC that raped the Gangrel for various... uses... with her, once he found out what his plans were. Then he messed with the Ventrue's player OOC about it, just to upset him since he didn't like the Ventrue guy's player.

We never had a third session, needless to say. :smallsigh:

The moral of all this is...

-Make sure the players are all mature and can work together, or at least get along out of character and not make things personal.
-If players are not comfortable with some aspects of the game, specifically all the sex and rape and stuff, TONE IT DOWN. Just because its heavily in the rulebook and setting doesn't mean you actually have to bring it into the game. Some of the players in my group weren't comfortable with all the sexual stuff, but the Storyteller and the Daeva player still brought it up a lot. DON'T LET THIS HAPPEN. Make sure everyone agrees on the content of the game, and you don't cross anyone's "squick" threshold.
-Some players like plot. Others like freeplay. Find out what your characters want to do - work together to destroy the forces of darkness, or just fool around and have fun as vampires.

2010-08-04, 09:06 PM
I would say go for the nWoD (New World of Darkness) book line for Vampires. Requiem tears away a-lot, some would say all, of the Christian Mythos surrounding the the game. Also there's no over-aching meta-plot like oWoD (Old World of Darkness), which requires you to buy a lot books just to be up to date.

Also Requiem is a good place to start for any person looking to enter nWoD, either it or Changeling. Changeling is just awesome.

2010-08-04, 09:15 PM
Ahh, didn't even know there was a "new version" of Vampire out. kk, I'll check that out first then. None of my players will know much about the setting at all so making it simple for them will help.

I doubt I'll bother much with the sexual side of things as I'm assuming all the PCs will be guys, so any sexual hijinks will be under the storyteller handwaving ".. and time passes."