V20 Rules worth noting
Seeing the Unseen:
Auspex enables Kindred to perceive many things beyond the limits of lesser senses. Among its many uses, Auspex can detect the presence of a supernatural being who is hidden from normal sight (a vampire using Obfuscate, for example, or a ghost) or pierce illusions created by the Discipline of Chimerstry.
Note: “Normal sight” includes regular, non-Auspex use of the Awareness skill.
• Obfuscate: When a vampire tries to use her heightened perceptions to notice a Kindred hidden with Obfuscate, she detects the subject’s presence if her Auspex rating is higher than his Obfuscate, and she succeeds at a Perception + Awareness roll (difficulty equals 7 minus the number of dots by which her Auspex exceeds his Obfuscate). Conversely, if the target’s Obfuscate outranks her Auspex, he remains undiscovered. If the two ratings are equal, both characters make a resisted roll of Perception + Awareness (Auspex user) against Manipulation + Subterfuge (Obfuscate user). The difficulty for both rolls is 7, and the character with the most successes wins.
• Chimerstry: Likewise, vampires with Auspex may seek to penetrate illusions created with Chimerstry. The Auspex-wielder must actively seek to pierce the illusion (i.e., the player must tell the Storyteller that his character is trying to detect an illusion).
The Auspex-user and Chimerstry-wielder then compare relative ratings, per Obfuscate, above. The process is otherwise identical to piercing Obfuscate.
• Other Powers: Since the powers of beings like magi and wraiths function differently from vampiric Disciplines, a simple comparison of relative ratings isn’t applicable. To keep things simple, both characters make a resisted roll. The vampire rolls Perception + Awareness, while the subject rolls Manipulation + Subterfuge. Again, the difficulty is 7, and the character with the most successes wins.
Humanity and Degeneration have been codified more, and are inextricably linked to hunger and feeding. Here is an overview of those rules:
Hunger = 7 – Self Control or Instinct
Gain 1 WP when feeding while hungry.
+1 diff on WP rolls for failing to feed
You may never roll more on Self Control or Instinct than you have Blood Pool.
You may never roll more on a Virtue than you have Humanity.
Diff varies. Roll varies depending on method used.
Domain and Fame reduce diff by 1/dot.
Herd adds 1 die/dot.
Inhuman vamps: +1 to 4 diff depending on severity.
If you feed while hungry, roll Frenzy check.
Roll Self Control: Provocation Diff varies according to table below. Vampires with Instinct always Frenzy.
Must get 5 successes. Each success below 5 holds off frenzy for 1 turn.
Failure: Gorge victim, emotional rampage, lose control.
Botch: Remains in Frenzy at ST’s discretion.
Frenzying vampires ignore Health level dice pool penalties. Cannot Rotschreck. Never roll WP.
Diff to mentally control at +2.
Diff to resist mental control at -2.
Conscience roll diff 8 (may not spend WP).
Failure: Loss of Humanity
Botch: Loss of Humanity and Conscience, gain derangement.
Expenditure of Blood Points = 8 – Humanity.
Humanity 4 or less results in urges and impulses that must be resisted with Conscience rolls or WP expenditure.
Daytime: Dice Pools cannot exceed Humanity.
A hungry vampire is more inclined to hunt, even if they have more than one blood point remaining — . Vampires gain a Willpower point when indulging in feeding while hungry, as this reinforces their inherent vampiric nature. Failing to feed while hungry imposes a penalty of +1 difficulty to all Willpower rolls because the vampire is too distracted with hunger to concentrate.
Blood pool also affects Self-Control (or Instinct) rolls, which come into play when a character’s frenzy becomes imminent. For example, if a character has only two blood points left, her player may roll only two dice for a Self-Control roll, even if the character’s Self- Control rating is 4. Voracious vampires just don’t fight the Beast very well.
It is the nature of the vampire to hunt. For each hour the vampire spends searching for human prey, allow the player to make a roll against a difficulty based on the area in which the vampire hunts. The Attribute and Ability combination used should correspond to the method by which the player describes the character’s hunting technique. For example, Appearance + subterfuge might represent a lusty tryst at a nightclub that ends in one of the lovers slaking her thirst, Stamina + Athletics would suggest a harrowing chase across a swath of city parkland, and Wits + Streetwise might be interpreted as a deadly game of cat-and-mouse.
Slum neighborhood/The Rack 4
Downtown business district 6
Warehouse district 6
Heavily patrolled area 8
Success on this roll indicates that the vampire has found and subdued prey, in a manner appropriate to her methods and the area. She may now ingest as many blood points as she wishes to take from the victim (or, if the Storyteller prefers, a single die’s worth of blood points). Failure indicates that the hour is spent looking fruitlessly, while a botch indicates a complication (perhaps the character accidentally kills a vessel, picks up a disease, enters the domain of a rival vampire, or suffers assault from a street gang). If a botch does occur, the Storyteller should quickly set up the scene and let the character try to work her way out of trouble. Storytellers and players should both be creative in proposing and describing the hunt to make it dramatic and exciting.
After all, finding prey isn’t necessarily the hard part — it’s holding on to one’s Humanity or preserving the Masquerade when the Beast hungers. If the character catches prey, but currently has fewer blood points in her body than [7 minus Self-Control or Instinct], the character is considered to be hungry and a frenzy check is necessary — Self-Control to see if the character frenzies, or Instinct to see if the character can control her frenzy while feeding. If the player fails this roll, the character continues to gorge on the vessel until she is completely sated (at full blood pool), the victim dies from blood loss, or she somehow manages to regain control of herself.
The Fame and Domain Backgrounds reduce difficulties of hunting rolls by one per dot (to a minimum of 3), while the Herd Background adds one die per dot in the Background (so long as one’s herd could conceivably be in the area). However, Storytellers may increase hunting difficulties for particularly inhuman vampires (Nutha, some Ennoia, vampires with Humanity ratings of 4 or below, or who are on Paths of Enlightenment), as such monsters find it difficult to blend in with a crowd.
Humanity and Degeneration
Whenever a character takes an action that the Storyteller decides is morally questionable, the character may suffer degeneration — a permanent loss of Humanity. If degeneration is a possibility, the player whose character commits the act should make a Conscience roll for that character. The difficulty is 8 — reprehensible acts are hard to justify — though the Storyteller may modify this. Willpower may not be spent for an automatic success on this roll — all the ego in the world won’t protect a character from guilt.
If the player makes the roll with even one success, the character loses no Humanity — he feels enough remorse or somehow manages to justify his transgression.
The Storyteller is free to decree that characters of low Humanity (4 or less) occasionally act according to various urges and impulses that must be resisted with Conscience rolls or Willpower expenditure. This is the crux of Vampire — how closely can the character walk with the Beast before it drags her into damnation?
Humanity also affects the following:
Vampires sleep unnaturally deeply and are loath to rise even if presented with danger. Vampires with higher Humanity rise earlier in the evening than vampires with lower Humanity ratings. also, if a Kindred is forced to act during the day, .
Humanity also affects a character’s Virtues. Whenever a certain Virtue is called into question, .
The length of time a Kindred spends in torpor relates directly to his Humanity rating. A vampire with low Humanity than a vampire with a higher Humanity rating.
Though most vampires (with the exception of Nutha) appear much as they did in life, they still display certain corpse-like features; for example, their skin is unnaturally cold and grows more ashen with age, and they do not breathe. By spending a variable number of blood points, a vampire may will himself to appear more human for a scene: flushing his skin, drawing breath, even becoming capable of engaging in sexual intercourse (this last, while helpful in certain
types of feeding, in no way means that the vampire may inseminate a mortal or become pregnant; a corpse is still a corpse, after all). ; thus, Kindred with Humanity ratings of 8 or higher may accomplish these feats automatically, while vampires with low Humanity find the process exceedingly arduous.
Humanity also affects your appearance – as reflected by bearing – how human a character appears
and how easily she may pass among the populace. Vampires with low Humanity acquire unnatural and disturbing features like sunken, glowing eyes, perpetual snarls, and bestial countenance.
In the Camarilla, succumbing to frenzy is seen as weakness, a humiliating loss of control. Vampires who frenzy often, and especially in public, run the risk of social rejection or worse.
A frenzy can be induced by many things, but great rage or hunger are the most common provocations.
Vampires in frenzy completely ignore all dice pool penalties inflicted by injury, until the frenzy ends. Once the frenzy is finished, the pain comes back and the crippling effects of the wounds take hold again.
All difficulties to Dominate or otherwise mentally control a frenzied character are increased by two, and all difficulties to resist the effects of such mental control are reduced by two. The character never needs Willpower rolls to accomplish a feat, because the rage fueling the vampire’s actions is both a catalyst to heightened state of mind and a barrier against unwanted
intrusions. Lastly, characters in frenzy are immune to the detrimental effects of Rötschreck.
In some cases, Kindred can manage to overcome the urge to frenzy. A vampire on the verge of frenzy must make a Self-Control roll against a variable difficulty. (Vampires with the Instinct Virtue always frenzy). The difficulty is often 6 to 8, but if trying to overcome the urge to commit a blatantly evil act, the vampire’s player can roll against a difficulty of (9 minus Conscience) instead. The character must score five successes to completely overcome the desires
for violence, but even one success halts the frenzy temporarily. For each success below five, the character can resist the urge to frenzy for one turn. After this duration expires, the character may try again to gain extra successes and thus continue to resist the frenzy. Once
five successes are acquired, over a longer or shorter period, the vampire resists the Beast’s urges.
Failure means the character goes into an emotional rampage, doing exactly what she wants to do with no worries of later repercussions. Botching the Self-Control roll means the character remains in a frenzy until the Storyteller decides otherwise, and (at the Storyteller’s discretion) she may gain a derangement related to the frenzy.
The following list shows common stimuli that can incite a frenzy, and the typical difficulty for a character to resist. If the frenzy has the potential to cause the vampire to commit an atrocity (killing a child or other innocent, for example), the Storyteller can rule that the difficulty is (9 minus Conscience or Conviction) instead.
Smell of blood (when hungry) 3 (or higher in extreme cases)
Sight of blood (when hungry) 4 (or higher in extreme cases)
Being harassed 4
Life-threatening situation 4
Malicious taunts 4
Physical provocation 6
Taste of blood (when hungry) 6 (or higher in extreme cases)
Loved one in danger 7
Outright public humiliation 8
Note: The Storyteller has final say in what can or cannot provoke a frenzy. In some cases the Storyteller might completely ignore what the players feel should send their characters into a rage, and instead have some minor event cause a frenzy. This is commonly done in situations where the Storyteller feels a frenzy can make a point about a character’s personality, or enhance the events of a story.
House Rule: While in the midst of a frenzy, the Beast rises to the surface, causing the vampire’s features to become more bestial and his eyes to glow with malice.
• Rather than having to divide your dice pool among multiple defensive actions, you may declare that your character spends an entire turn defending. The normal multiple-action rules are not used in this case. Instead, you have a full dice pool for the first defensive action, but lose one die, cumulatively, for each subsequent defense action made in the same turn. It is still difficult to avoid several incoming attacks, but not as difficult as trying to attempt multiple things at once.
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