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Although it is an entirely new game, rather than a continuation of the previous editions, it uses many elements from the old game including some of the clans and their powers.
In the first edition, it required the World of Darkness corebook for use, and was released alongside it in August In December a supplement titled Blood and Smoke: The Strix Chronicle was released, adding a default world setting and significantly revising certain aspects of the game to bring them in line with the upcoming changes to the core rules of the new World of Darkness. At GenCon , it was announced that Blood and Smoke would be re-branded as Vampire: the Requiem, Second Edition , with a new cover, index and very minor changes in November This release in both its forms was a stand-alone game, able to be played with no other books as references.
White Wolf combined their new World of Darkness setting and rule system in a single game book, The World of Darkness , and simultaneously released Vampire: The Requiem , a sourcebook that supplemented The World of Darkness by offering up all the rules needed to play as a vampire in the setting. The game takes place in modern-day earth where Vampires form complex societies hidden from human awareness. Vampires are unliving humans created when a Vampire drains a human dry of blood and then feeds the corpse a few drops of its own vampiric blood.
Vampires that have inherited common physical powers and qualities group themselves into "clans", but they also join "covenants" along religious, political or philosophical lines. These groups differ radically in purpose and outlook and are often in conflict, though they agree that they must hide their existence from humans. Vampires generally dwell in large cities, where they can find plenty of prey and easily remain inconspicuous.
Vampires do not need to kill humans to steal blood; humans go into a trance when a vampire feeds on them and do not remember the moment, and a vampire can erase the bite marks it made by licking them. While Vampires use the stolen blood they call vitae to bolster their physical prowess, heal wounds, and wield Disciplines, it is also the fuel the use to arise every night; a Vampire cannot awaken if it does not have any blood.
Similar to the previous game, Kindred are brought into one of five clans as part of their metamorphosis into vampires. Each clan covers a broad range of vampiric archetypes:. Within these clans are many sub-clans, known as bloodlines. A vampire's Blood Potency increases steadily with age, but can also be boosted by spending experience points or consuming the soul of another vampire diablerie. A more potent vampire can store more blood points and access greater supernatural powers.
However, his feeding needs become more stringent as well: the weakest vampires can live on animal blood, but the most powerful vampires can only live on the blood of other vampires. Powerful vampires who cannot meet this need usually go into a prolonged slumber either by their own will or from hunger; either way, the centuries weaken the blood so that they may feed again. Kindred can use a variety of supernatural powers called Disciplines, reflecting such traits as inhuman speed, strength, or charisma, as well as other vampiric attributes such as control over vermin and predators.
These are special abilities associated with their curse which, like their undead bodies, are "fed" in a way by the living blood they take from mortals. Unlike many fictional portrayals, Vampires in Requiem are not universally repelled by crucifixes, garlic or holy water, and they can enter any private domain without invitation. A stake through the heart merely paralyses them. Fire, sunlight and the claws and fangs of supernatural creatures inflict terrible injuries that take significant time and blood to heal.
During the daytime most Vampires slumber; while their bodies will not begin to degrade unless exposed to the sun or other means of harm they cannot otherwise be distinguished from corpses. Vampires all have an aspect of their personality they refer to as "The Beast," which exists only to feed when hungry and kill when upset. When a Vampire is sufficiently distraught, either through threat, injury, hunger, or humiliation, they enter a berserk rage called Frenzy during which the Beast takes hold.
Vampires keep the Beast in check with the memories and behaviors of mortal life, collectively referred to as a Vampire's Humanity. Without actively working to maintain it, a Vampire's humanity will degrade: the need to feed upon humans can drive a Vampire to become inured to the cruelty they inflict, and a centuries-long life can leave them jaded to the human experience. In addition to the ever-present threat of losing oneself to the Beast, the Kindred have other motivations to maintain their humanity: Vampires with lower humanity are also more grievously harmed by exposure to sunlight, spend longer in the extended slumber called torpor , and their alien perspective makes it more difficult for them to relate to humans.
Vampires have many enemies, most from within their own clans and covenants. There are some that stand out as being opposed to Vampire society as a whole, and some of the most prominent enemies Vampires face are Fampires themselves. There are only two "enemy only" covenants in the core rulebook:. The second edition also focuses on a different race with vampiric traits that have often clashed with the Kindred:. New Line Cinema optioned the feature rights to Vampire: The Requiem in , but to date no script has emerged.
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