Character creation

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This guide has been written to be used alongside the character sheet [1] and will detail the steps needed in order to fill out a sheet for a vampire.

Basic character information

At the top of the sheet, there is some basic information that is needed to begin.

  • Name: This is the name of the character.
  • Concept: A general and brief description of who the character is. Examples; private investigator trying to unravel their mystery, a college student attempting to blend into their previous life still or, an occult professor who dug too deep.
  • Predator type: This is the method by which a vampire hunts to obtain blood. See Predator types.
  • Chronicle: This is the name of the chronicle this character is being played in.
  • Ambition: A long-term goal in which they wish to complete, this ties into the Ambition mechanic. [2]
  • Clan: What vampire clan they belong to.
  • Sire: The vampire who Embraced the character, their sire.
  • Desire: A short term goal, similar to ambition, which reflects more of their momentary wants. [3]
  • Generation: How close they are to the mythical vampire progenitor, Caine. See Generation.

Clans

The playable clans are as follows listed in order of their corresponding books;

Corebook Camarilla Book Anarch Book Chicago by Night Cults of the Blood Gods VTM Companion
Brujah icon.png Brujah Banu icon.png Banu Haqim Ministry icon.png The Ministry Lasombra icon.png Lasombra Hecata icon.png Hecata Ravnos icon.png Ravnos
Gangrel icon.png Gangrel Salubri icon.png Salubri
Malkavian icon.png Malkavian Tzimisce icon.png Tzimisce
Nosferatu icon.png Nosferatu
Toreador icon.png Toreador
Tremere icon.png Tremere
Ventrue icon.png Ventrue
Caitiff icon.png Caitiff
Thinblood icon.png Thin-blood

Sea of time

Decide with the Storyteller and other players what age the characters will be. A suggested set of information pertaining to age and other factors is below; [4]

Age Embraced Generation Blood Potency Other Effects
Childer Within the last 15 years 14th, 15th, 16th (All Thin-Bloods)

12th and 13th (Not Thin-bloods)

0 (Thin-bloods)

1 (Not Thin-bloods)

- None
Neonate Between 1940 and a decade ago 12th or 13th 1 - Gain 15 Experience
Ancillae Between 1780 and 1940 10th or 11th 2 - Gain 35 Experience

- Gain 2 additional Advantage points

- Gain 2 additional Flaw Points

- Remove 1 Humanity Point

Attributes

Attributes represent the characters innate abilities, with 1 being relatively bad, 2 being average and up to 5 which represents peak ability. The Attributes are divided into three separate categories; Physical, Social and Mental. [5]

When building the sheet; the player will place one attribute at 1 dot, four attributes at 2 dots, three attributes at 3 dots, and one final attribute at 4 dots with this being the vampire's best trait.

Physical

The Physical Attributes measure the general Strength, Dexterity, and Stamina of a character. These Attributes represent the mortal prowess of a vampire's body. Though through the use of certain Disciplines, vampires often exceed the abilities of an otherwise frail-looking physique.

Strength: How strong the character is, how much they can lift, and how much force they can exert.

Dexterity: How agile a character is, how graceful they can be, or how nimble those fingers are.

Stamina: The character's physical resistance, how long they can persevere through hazards and other strenuous activities, or how much damage they can absorb.

Social

The Social Attributes reflect how easily the character can communicate with vampires and mortals alike to achieve their goals. Through deception or charisma, some battles are easier won through words than combat. These attributes reflect that by determining how their interactions are shaped through their ability to charm, persuade and motivate others to help them; though it is not always as wholesome as it may seem.

Charisma: Determines the character's natural appeal, charm and grace. With this attribute they'll be able to draw people into them although do not mistake this for good looks, that is a merit all on it's own. [6]

Manipulation: Showcases how skilled the character is at being an effective liar, their ability to twist others to a winning point of view, and how deceptive they are.

Composure: Reflects how well the character can maintain and command their own emotions. As well as how easily they can calm nerves and the anxieties of others. It also represents their ability to stay calm-headed in heated situations such as verbal fights and even firefights.

Mental

The Mental Attributes represent the character's natural intuition, the ability to learn quickly and react quickly with thoughts rather than their bodies. It also represents their determination and dedication to accomplishing something.

Intelligence: Represents the character's ability to gather knowledge through research or reason as well as apply logic to an ongoing problem. They have an easier time recalling information they have gathered before and can analyze information from the world around them or the books they've read.

Wits: Reflects the character's ability to think quickly on their feet and make decisions based on the information around them or from prior knowledge. Wits allow the character to pick up sounds and smells around them, perhaps preventing a possible ambush from happening without warning. It is also representative of a character's street smarts and know what to say in the heat of the moment. Rather than mulling on it the next night and realizing they had the perfect comeback to that snobby harpy the entire time.

Resolve: Measures the raw determination of a character and how strong their focus truly is. This Attribute powers the all-night stakeouts. Allowing the character to create a mental block from any distractions, showcasing their mental fortitude and concentration.

From these players can derive a few more traits.

  • Health: Stamina+3
  • Willpower: Composure+Resolve [7]
  • Humanity: The base Humanity for a neonate and lower is 7, not including any changes from their Predator types. It is possible for a fresh embrace to begin at Humanity 8. [8]

Skills

Similar to Attributes, Skills are defined as follows. No dots means they have no knowledge or formal training, one being that they have basic knowledge, two is general knowledge, three is a professional Skill level, four means they've specialized in this, and five is mastery of the Skill. [9]

The distribution of Skills is a choice between three different options;

  • Jack of All Trades: One Skill at 3 dots, eight Skills at 2 dots, and ten Skills at 1 dot.
  • Balanced: Three Skills at 3 dots, five Skills at 2 dots, and seven Skills at 1 dot.
  • Specialist: One Skill at 4 dots, three Skills at 3 dots, three Skills at 2 dots, and three Skills at 1 dot.

Following this is Skill specialty, which is specific expertise in a given Skill. If the players have allotted dots into the Skills Academics, Craft, Performance, and/or Science they will need to choose a free specialty for those with dots. Then they will have one more additional free specialty to place in any Skill. Don't forget to add in the spec from the Predator type and remember that characters can only have a specialty in a Skill for as many dots as they have except in specific cases such as the Craft Skill. If the character gains a specialty from the Predator type but has no dots in the Skill, the specialty can instead be converted to the first dot of one Skill. [10]

Physical

Athletics: Running, jumping, and climbing are all actions within Athletics. Dodging a well-thrown punch in the heat of combat and throwing an item or weapon is also Athletics.

Brawl: Combat focused on using the body as a weapon rather than an item.

Craft: Creating, building, or shaping items such as artwork but also making a makeshift catapult.

Drive: Driving vehicles specifically under duress and adverse or difficult conditions. Also used for working on cars or general mechanic skills.

Firearms: Using ranged weaponry such as bows and guns as well as gunsmithing and repair of said items.

Larceny: Lockpicking a locked door or breaking in other ways, pickpocketing and sleight of hand.

Melee: Combat focused around using handheld weaponry such as a lead pipe or a baseball bat.

Stealth: Blending into surroundings to either not be seen or not be recognized, allows characters to move around without alerting anyone of their presence either by sight or sound.

Survival: Using nature to find shelter, tracking animals or people, and general survival in the wilderness.

Social

Animal Ken: Understanding and reading animal behavior to handle them and work with them.

Etiquette: The ability to interact in social settings or blend into different groups.

Insight: Reading body language and other cues to discern emotions, thoughts, or motives.

Intimidation: Using menacing presence or direct force to ensure compliance, submission, or fear from others. As well as using threats to persuade them to back down.

Leadership: Motivating, inspiring, or commanding the character's followers.

Performance: Showcasing the character's art in front of a crowd regardless of size. Singing, acting, and oration are all examples of this.

Persuasion: Convincing or swaying others to do the character's will or at least agree with their stance.

Streetwise: Knowledge of the streets in criminal and urban societies, being able to locate a gang or dealer, knowing which shortcut will be the fastest.

Subterfuge: Deceiving others to complete the character's desires or agree with them or manipulating the truth to further their goals.

Mental

Academics: Topics surrounding the humanities and liberal arts.

Awareness: Vigilant to their surroundings and the ability to understand/react to threats.

Finance: Knowing how to move and make money legally or not, being able to handle finances and their taxes.

Investigation: Being able to find and follow clues, decipher their meaning and solve a mystery.

Medicine: Handling mortal injuries and diagnosing/treating diseases.

Occult: Mystical knowledge of the supernatural and rituals, kindred related or not.

Politics: Knowing the inner workings of the government, mortal or not.

Science: Scientific knowledge and theory of the real world.

Technology: Internet and computer comprehension, hacking and breaking into secure information through the use of technology.

Disciplines

Main Article: Disciplines

Disciplines are selected from the character's three clan Disciplines. Pick two of them; one of the two chosen Disciplines starts at level 2, the other at level 1. Keep in mind that many Disciplines offer more than one power option, so the player must decide which of the available powers they wish the character to have. They can pick a power from the level of the Discipline the character is currently at or below for a total of five powers if the Discipline is maxed out.

The Caitiff do not have in-clan Disciplines and instead can pick from all Disciplines. Thin-bloods, unless they have Discipline Affinity, do not have permanent access to Disciplines other than Thin-blood Alchemy, relying instead on temporarily gaining Disciplines from feeding from mortals with different Resonances.

Chronicle Tenets

Chronicle Tenets are the guidelines by which the chronicle will run and should be set up by the players with the Storyteller. These tenets can encapsulate anything from genre or period emulation, dramatic irony, or personal taste. However, if something might have genuine risk or trauma to another player in the group it should be a topic avoided by the players and Storyteller. See Considerate play.

The Chronicle Tenets apply to all player characters in the chronicle regardless if the character holds this belief personally and when broken will give Stains leading to possible degeneration of Humanity. [11]

Touchstones and Convictions

Convictions are the guidelines by which a vampire wishes to live their unlife. They may be personal mortal codes, societal expectations, religious codes, or other things the character does or considers without weighing the ethical or philosophical weight. [12] Convictions are not required to be morally good, rather they are simply the way the vampire traverses the night. A high humanity vampire might still have convictions allowing murder, whereas a low humanity vampire might not.

Touchstones are a vampire's connection to the mortal world, representing a mindset in which they value themselves. A Touchstone must be a single living human being. The touchstone might be a surviving partner or family member, related to someone who the vampire killed in their early unlife or even just something they run into regularly. Some Kindred, due to their disconnect from the mortal world may even pick a Touchstone who doesn't know they exist, instead choosing to stalk and watch over the human to retain their connections to humanity. [13]

Characters will begin with a minimum of 1 Conviction to a maximum of 3 with each Conviction being tied directly to a Touchstone.

Advantages and Flaws

Merits and Flaws

Main Article: Merits and Flaws

Alongside their Attributes, Skills, and Disciplines, Kindred also have Advantages from the time before they started the Chronicle. Advantages are broken down into different types which are Merits, Backgrounds, and Loresheets. The opposite end of Advantages are Flaws, which are ongoing problems for the characters.

  • Vampires will begin with 7 dots worth of Advantages with 2 Flaws plus any additional due to their age if using Sea of Time, however, this number excludes any of the Merits and Flaws from the Predator type.
  • Thin-bloods must take an additional number, from 1 to 3, of thin-blood Merits with a matching number of thin-blood Flaws.

Loresheets

Main Article: Loresheets

Coterie creation

Main Article: Coterie Backgrounds and Merits

Blood Potency

Main Article: Blood Potency
Game concepts
Beginner's guide Vampire: The MasqueradeConsiderate playOfficial TTRPG sources
Character creation Merits and FlawsCoterie Backgrounds and MeritsLoresheetsPredator typesMortals and ghouls
Quick references Hunger systemResonanceHumanityIndex
Clans Banu HaqimBrujahGangrelCaitiffHecataLasombraMalkavianThe MinistryNosferatuRavnosSalubriToreadorTremereTzimisceVentrueThin-blood
Disciplines AnimalismAuspexBlood SorceryBlood Sorcery RitualsCelerityDominateFortitudeObfuscateOblivionOblivion CeremoniesPotencePresenceProteanThin-Blood Alchemy
Factions CamarillaAnarchCults
Antagonists Second InquisitionSabbat

References