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PNP Roleplay => Interactive Story Board => Topic started by: Nigama on May 07, 2014, 03:26:17 AM

Title: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on May 07, 2014, 03:26:17 AM
Quote
I think at this point we just run a tabletop game with 7-9 very different players with different playstyles and let them create the new founding bloodlines and then build a new game from there.  I swear, we could do it, all we need is our own lore.  Imagine what would happen if we just did the basic opening scenario of a potential MMO... there is no vampire society at all, then 7-9 people are randomly embraced... what society do they form?  what do they call themselves?  do they align politically or by blood?  Set in a modern/realistic world but darker and grittier.  White Wolf/CCP owns none of this.

from https://forums.planetvampire.com/?topic=6413.45 (https://forums.planetvampire.com/?topic=6413.45)

The idea is to create a new modern horror, vampire based intellectual property that would be open for others to utilize.  While there may be similarities between this new world and the World of Darkness, our goal is to use similar sources as White Wolf originally did (from Dracula and Anne Rice to Lost Boys and beyond) to build our own mythos, without copying from WW.

To this end, the Creation Myth becomes important.  Who were the first vampires?  How might those first vampires shape the modern nights?  While we could do what White Wolf did and design the world from the modern day backwards, it seems more organic to me to get players of different personality types and let them write or roleplay their creation stories, with the unique details that pop up in such stories providing the meat for the mythos of the modern nights stories and lineages.  The creation stories would be a mix of myth and truth/reality.

The idea would be to define a set of basic elements and mechanics and then let the players run with that.  If we have few people interested we will probably ask people to write their origin stories and then edit them to make sure there are no glaring inconsistencies.  Ideally, though, we'd have more players and we could do a sort of "Peer to Peer storytelling" to quote Rad, where if we had say 8 players, 4 would act as ST for 4 players and then we'd switch, and the former game runners would become the players.

But before we can even start talking about the basics and mechanics, is anybody even interested?


Simple Mechanics to be Decided:
 - How does creation work?
 - How does the blood bond work?
 - What powers do vampires have access to?
 - Are all vampires connected somehow or do they have individual creations mythoi?
 - what else?


Look forward to hearing from you!

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on May 07, 2014, 04:24:30 AM
Just for inspiration's sake, I'm going to throw out some ideas that should sound a bit familiar...:

1) Vampires are a predatory species, like lions.
2) Vampires are mutations, with powers, like in comic books.
3) Vampires are the next evolution of human beings.
4) Vampires are an alien species from outer space.
5) Nobody knows because none of the old vampires remember anything.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on May 07, 2014, 04:42:14 AM
What if it were okay that all of those were possible?  There's no reason each origin story for each unique character can't be completely different.  It will give anyone not from that lineage a chance to mock it, agree with it, or reframe it vis a vis the context of their own lineage's origin story.  Rad was mulling over a more tribal, neolithic creator figure, whereas I was thinking more urban, cultural and (proto) Greek.  Both might have wildly differing stories of how they became vampires.

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on May 07, 2014, 05:09:34 AM
I'm kind of inspired by vtm to write something based in reality/history as setting so I am doing some mild research in order to write the progenitor's mythos/story for the lineage of vampires I'm creating: since the progenitor lived in the late neolithic period I have to know what the lifestyle was like then before inserting the hypothetical mythical/supernatural element that turned him into a vampire.

will post it when I'm done/

@Rick I think all of the options you wrote could  easily apply to Caine from VTM, the fun thing is that no one knows for sure.

To Clarify: (after reading what Rick wrote below): I'm more in favor of multiple progenitors and multiple mythoi.

Quote
Simple Mechanics to be Decided:
 - How does creation work?
 - How does the blood bond work?
 - What powers do vampires have access to?
 - Are all vampires connected somehow or do they have individual creations mythoi?
 - what else?

My own notion of these:
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on May 07, 2014, 06:38:32 PM
For Vampire Pirates In Space!!, at the time I started writing the history (near-future), I was taking for granted that vampires had existed for the longest time, and that they had remained successfully hidden until this point in time when Mankind Needed Them (c). In my vampire version of events, vampires were more similar than different; in terms of VTM, every vampire had a few of the same Clan Disciplines (everybody gets Fortitude, Potence, Dominate, and for all intents and purposes, Presence), but there were different lineages that split off and developed their own powers, so you could tell lineages apart. Some just preferred using one style over another, as by the time the real setting of VPIS!! takes off, humankind has spread throughout the galaxy, and vampires have very distinct cultures that lend themselves towards different developments.

Right now, I've effectively got Ventrue (the "Old Earth" lineages , who rule shadow kingdoms of the first and oldest Earth colonies), Gangrel-Lasombra mixes (feral pirates who breed and consume prolifically), the Ravnos (like the Gangrel-Lasombra mixes, only they're still sane), and the Tremere (while there's no magic in this setting, they constantly conspire to achieve technological and bio-cybernetic advances).
But since vampires have more in common with another vampire than as seen in VTM, there are no official Clans or Bloodlines; you're re-created as a vampire first, and then your lifestyle corresponds with one of the major powers (being heavily influenced by who re-created you). Sort of like every vampire starting off as a Caitiff, and then joining a sect/covenant. But different. I didn't want to make hardline sects or covenants that were primarily one lineage or another ("Oh, you're from Old Earth? You must be XYZ!"); VPIS!! is much more about adventure and slightly more personal relationships than it is Sect vs. Sect warfare or worrying about the end of the world. The setting is bigger; the relationships are smaller.

----------------

Anyway, the important bit...
Perhaps the most relevant part of VPIS!! at this stage is whether or not you're/we're allowing alien species. If so, then the origin stories of that alien species could be one of the ones listed above. Human vampires were "cursed" somewhen back in prehistory; frog-alien vampires were evolutionary developments; hive-mind bug-alien vampires were deviant mutations; the Old Ones vampires are from Outer Outer Space and are alien to EVERYBODY.
If it's a human-centric campaign without active gods, then I'd say they were a biological experiment gone wrong (meaning that they were a recent development; no earlier than the 1800s), or they began with a degenerate cannibal with aspirations beyond his station (that could go as far back as the tribal stage, when cannibalism became taboo. Maybe this proto-vampire was the REASON cannibalism became taboo. Just look what happens!).

Even if we don't expand on VPIS!!, I kind of like the idea of a degenerate cannibal being the Originator. That taints the whole race of vampires forever, and encourages the view of vampires being violent, bloodthirsty, and all-consuming, instead of/in addition to being pretty-boy social butterflies.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on May 07, 2014, 11:56:51 PM
No offense to the settings you developed Rick but I prefer something more built around the real
Cannibalism may be good starting point for whatever bloodline you develop but it has been practiced over thousands of years in numerous cultures that didn't become vampires (source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cannibalism (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cannibalism) ) so what sets your type of cannibalism apart?

I'm really against cannibalism as the source of all vampires for two reasons:
-  Cannibalism has already been associated with werewolves on number of IPs.
- Vampire feeding shouldn't default to permanently kill/maim a person: some vampires should able to be on the moral greyscale from an ignorant-mortal perspective, and some of them should be able to play pretty boy social butterflies.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on May 08, 2014, 05:00:45 AM
Cannibalism may be good starting point for whatever bloodline you develop but it has been practiced over thousands of years in numerous cultures that didn't become vampires
Are you sure about that?
Okay, so maybe not just ONE degenerate cannibal. There can be more degenerate cannibals around. As they mention in Bloodlines there are blood-drinking cultures all over the world. You've got ancient Assyrians, the Aztecs, aaaaaand... Well, even the Mongols (of Asia) and Massai tribes (of Africa) drank blood concoctions regularly. Probably still do. Horse and cow blood. Mmm-mmm, good. One small step to some individual substituting the blood of living human beings.

Quote
I'm really against cannibalism as the source of all vampires for two reasons:
-  Cannibalism has already been associated with werewolves on number of IPs.
- Vampire feeding shouldn't default to permanently kill/maim a person: some vampires should able to be on the moral greyscale from an ignorant-mortal perspective, and some of them should be able to play pretty boy social butterflies.
1) So? Werewolves and vampires have a lot more in common than their feeding habits. The supernaturalness, for one. Association with nighttime. Violent tendencies. In quite a few cases, shapeshifting powers. Penchant for hanging out with scantily-clad female leads. Credited with Eastern European origins.
2) That's where the "refinement" of the vampire existence comes in. Maybe the next generation after the degenerate cannibal only felt the need for blood; maybe the next vampire re-created wasn't a cannibal in life, so they only got "half" the curse. They can still play the pretty-boy (if they must), because their physical appearance isn't changed so much.
But on that note, I'd like to have a more concrete reason why vampires are stuck in physical stasis than, "Just 'cause". If in fact they are in our setting.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on May 08, 2014, 05:19:51 AM
Cannibalism may be good starting point for whatever bloodline you develop but it has been practiced over thousands of years in numerous cultures that didn't become vampires
Are you sure about that?
Okay, so maybe not just ONE degenerate cannibal. There can be more degenerate cannibals around. As they mention in Bloodlines there are blood-drinking cultures all over the world. You've got ancient Assyrians, the Aztecs, aaaaaand... Well, even the Mongols (of Asia) and Massai tribes (of Africa) drank blood concoctions regularly. Probably still do. Horse and cow blood. Mmm-mmm, good. One small step to some individual substituting the blood of living human beings.


There is a big difference between cannibalizing someone and drinking their blood. The fact that you can do one without the other alone is difference enough.

Either way I don't think the progenitor I create needs to be a cannibal, its not really in his personality.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on May 09, 2014, 12:54:42 AM
Cannibalism and blood-drinking have more to do with one another than... just about anything else and blood-drinking. Murdering your brother doesn't translate directly into vampirism, either, but they pulled it off in VTM. Lots of people do THAT without turning into vampires. But there's got to be some change in the natural order of things for vampires to happen. Outright cannibalism makes a lot of sense: it's consuming something taboo to extend your own life.

While we're still settling on "exactly who", I'm also going to throw out some "wheres". Any and all of these could be valid:
The Aztec Empire (Middle America) (a priest or warrior)
Egypt (Africa) (the pharaoh who found REAL immortality*)
Proto-Massai Tribes (Africa) (Africa's full of stories of taboos, and still has blood-drinking practices)
Scotland (Western Europe) (druids, you know)
Mountainous China (Asia) (warrior, monk, peasant, somebody who made a deal with a demon)
Caste member of India (Asia) (I'm guessing warrior or untouchable; somebody who wanted revenge badly enough to deal with one of India's demons/rakshasa)

*though an extremely similar tact has been used in the Warhammer Fantasy setting.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on May 09, 2014, 01:57:30 AM
Not a whole lot to report as I'm still doing my research, but I think I'll be doing two since it looks like there aren't many of us interested at this point.  So far it's looking like the first will be Greek (found some good Greek stories that involve the exact stuff I'm looking for, but the details still need to be worked out) and I found a great Aztec god to base things off of in that department but again, not sure of all the details yet.  My next post will include more detailed info about both ideas.

Nigama

Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on May 09, 2014, 03:25:11 AM
Cannibalism and blood-drinking have more to do with one another than... just about anything else and blood-drinking. Murdering your brother doesn't translate directly into vampirism, either, but they pulled it off in VTM. Lots of people do THAT without turning into vampires. But there's got to be some change in the natural order of things for vampires to happen. Outright cannibalism makes a lot of sense: it's consuming something taboo to extend your own life.

Actually Caine turned into a vamp from either the curse  or for associating himself with Lillith(a witch/demoness of sorts), it wasn't the act by itself.
Whats next someone turned into a vampire for drinking breast-milk as an adult? that is kind of taboo also.

Look, If you want to make a Cannibalism progenitor good for you, it worked for Nagaraja, but I don't see why I  have to adopt it into what I am writing? (I see cannibalism as more disgusting than scary/taboo) and what is wrong with blood drinking that you are so insistent on replacing it with cannibalism?
This is precisely why one progenitor for everyone is a bad idea: Even in VTM there is no shortage of people who dislike the judeo-christian roots or this clan or that but the settings is very modular so they can be customized with plenty of equally canon alternatives.   
TL;DR: As far as I'm concerned we are not "settling on exactly who", because there is more than one.

I am writing Northern Europe in the upper neolithic era which includes megaliths/weird stone markings, pagan mythology etc and plenty of room to expand on in later eras.  I am slowly moving out of the research stage and starting to write stuff but other projects kept me busy.

I think we might also benefit from figuring out some kind of overarching metaplot/s that will help motivate vampires in the settings.(completely optional but I think its part of the reason many prefer VTM over VTR)

Update:
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on May 11, 2014, 03:18:37 PM
I was the under the impression that this was going to be a single but collaborative project between a number of creative people (well, three so far). But if we're all going to be doing our own thing anyway, with separate origins and consequential plotlines, I'm goin' back to Vampire Pirates In Space!! and flesh that out a little more.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on May 11, 2014, 07:30:53 PM
I was the under the impression that this was going to be a single but collaborative project between a number of creative people (well, three so far). But if we're all going to be doing our own thing anyway, with separate origins and consequential plotlines, I'm goin' back to Vampire Pirates In Space!! and flesh that out a little more.

Yes, it is collaborative, At this point I got the impression that we are all (2 of us it seems) doing research and working on different parts of the same settings  ,after we see what we have we can critique and make changes if needed so it all fits together.

The Mechanics intended to be common to all are the ones outlined by Nigama at the OP and what is a vampire in general but I do not expect that we would have to make big changes there from what we all already know.

Also for consequential plot-lines I think it is abit early to tell. VTM had more than a few of these meta-plots and while it enrich the settings it also somewhat convoluted.

Good luck with Vampire Pirates in space all the same.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on May 12, 2014, 05:15:23 AM
It is entirely possible that our separate lines of research (inspiration/cockamamie theory-crafting) will result in parallel and complementary ideas that can be combined.

So while you two are doing all the hard work, I'm going to continue with my cockamamie theory-crafting and hope that it blends with Egyptian, northern European, and/or Aztec historical research! Yaaaaay!
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on May 16, 2014, 01:42:43 AM
** WORK IN PROGRESS **

Blood Lineage: Asklepiades (Sons of Asklepios)

Founder: The leader of the asklepieion at Epidaurus (the most well known asklepieion in Ancient Greece), details of his change still fuzzy, but he found or was caretaker of Asklepios' formula to bring humans back from the dead.  (Asklepios was killed because he was reviving people from the dead and Hades became upset.  Zeus killed him with a lightning bolt, but Apollo created such a bother that Zeus resurrected him as a god.) However, either the formula used was incomplete or he/they substituted human blood in place of the blood of the gods ("ichor," which would normally be toxic to a mortal) [,or alternatively the blood of the Gorgon was the blood they were missing.  Athena gave it to Asklepios so he could resurrect someone for her; the blood from the Gorgon's right side brought life, while the left side brought death.  Same idea, they used mortal blood instead of Gorgon blood.]  The result was that he rose from the dead, but was cursed by Hades. 

??  Possible connection with Founder to Cadmus, who founded Thebes, taught Greeks the Phoenician alphabet, slayed a serpent, only to be eventually turned into a serpent.  Also, Cadmus seems to be associated with this pre-Greek pantheon group of gods called Kabeiroi, which probably would have belonged to the sailors that spread FROM Phoenicia, which brings us back closer to the weird gods of Mesopotamia.  The Kabeiroi religion was super secretive and somewhat dark, which serves my needs nicely.  I'd like to tie this in somehow, but Cadmus is FAR before the worship of Asklepios (Asklepious is worshiped in Ancient Greece, Cadmus is a founder from Mythological Greece).

3rd possibility: Asklepios apparently raised three people from the dead... Hippolytus who had sworn chastity to Artemis, goddess of the hunt.  Lycurgus, a King who died in battle.  And Capaneus, a physically powerful but arrogant man killed by Zeus for his arrogance.  Each lineage could reflect the outline of the one listed overall here but those descended from Hippolytus would be more predatory, perhaps heavy agility/speed, Lycurgus could focus on toughness, control of others, Capaneus could focus on strength, toughness and be very arrogant.

Blood Strengths: Healing, Toughness, Stamina, Poison Resistance, Control, Dreams? (dream interp used in healing in Ancient Greece)

Associated Animals: Snakes (non venomous snakes seen as instruments of healing), Crow (Apollo turned crows black (they were formerly white) because they delivered news that Asklepios' mother was cheating on him, for which Apollo also killed her before removing Asklepios via C-section, hence his name "to cut").

Blood Weaknesses: ??  Perhaps something along the line of losing control  ?   Maybe something to do with atonement  ? Maybe something to do with purity

Power Base: Mortal Society, Material Wealth, Resilience
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on May 16, 2014, 04:42:45 AM
//Work in Progress

The Bloodline : Dragutharr (placeholder for now)
 
Founder: The Founder was a migrating tribesman during the Neolithic era.
The land in which the tribe was farming became corrupt and the tribe began wandering to the north-west of europe to find new land. While travelling his tribe was massacred by monsters(Demons? Prehistoric Animals? Mythological creatures? God? Elves?)  by the shores of a lake surrounded by giant rocks (the monsters were hidden in the rocks). Only the Founder, and three of his friends survived the onslaught by hiding in the lake’s shallows, the rest of the tribe were either dead or captured.
 While the Monsters were feasting on the fallen, the survivors sought to escape , to do so the Founder stealthily killed one of the monsters, as he did so he tasted the monster’s blood and gained some of its power and bloodlust, instead of escaping the Founder sought to kill more of the monsters, taking them by surprise with his new power he spilled and gorged on their blood and gaining more of their power. 
But the Gods didn’t like that the Founder was gaining so much power and as the battle-worn and wounded Founder was washed with the blood of his enemies after his victory ,the Gods made it so his Friends did not recognize him and thought he was a monster, they trapped and killed the Founder.
In the aftermath only one of the survivors, a seer, was able to see through the god’s deception. after the others left she dragged the founders body to the shadow of the stone and resurrected him (using monster blood?) but the Founder was filled with bloodlust and couldn’t help but gorge on her blood, she cursed him as the last drop of blood escaped her veins.

((The Founder wandered the more some more, by some variations becoming one of the gods to civilizations he encountered: using his strength he built megalithic circular stone monuments/altars where mortals made sacrifices to him?))

Dark Ages: TBD

Modern Nights: TBD



Alternate variations on story:TBD
Associated animal: Lone wolf?
Powers: TBD
Power-base: ?Intimidation, ?Lore/Faith/"Fate", ?Metamorphosis,
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on May 16, 2014, 04:43:20 AM
Since we are posting works in progress, anyway ill comment and add more later, need sleep
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on May 16, 2014, 04:44:03 AM
@ Nigama
If you're figuring in influence over dreams... I'd say factor in Morpheus (god of sleep and false dreams) somehow. Interestingly, Morpheus is the brother of Death. There's got to be a connection there. The dream-state being a threshold between the sleeping world and the waking world, like vampires are at the threshold between life and death? Also, if the threshold motif keeps going, there's the whole "Vampires cannot cross the threshold of a home unless invited inside by someone with the authority to do so" business.

@ Radical21
For animal association, any solitary violent predator sounds like it would do. Animals famous for going it alone are the ones along the line of the wolverine (considered too vicious to be sociable), the eagle (the high-flyin' solo type), the aforementioned lone wolf (though traditionally wolves are first thought of as a pack; it works for the monsters who attacked the Founder, but doesn't work quite as well for the Founder himself), and of all things, the weasel (it's sneaky and mean-looking). If you like the association with the eagle, for inspiration on the monsters, check out the first Beast Master movie. There are some cool-looking bird-monster-people-eating critters in there. Though they may be hawkish instead of aquiline...
Are you talking north-western Europe as in France, or north-western Europe as in Denmark/Norway? I don't think people of the Neolithic era could've managed to migrate to the British Isles. From the sound of it, I'm guessing more Denmark/Norway.

For my own part, I'm going to re-read the Popol Vuh when I find it again and see if I can get inspiration for a Mexican/Aztec branch of vampirism. (It's technically Mayan, but I'm willing to overlook that in favor of geographical expediency.) I remember something about a Hell of Bones that was the domain of a rather mean, evil, and tricky kind of god, so maybe this branch would have more in common with the Tzimisce.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on May 16, 2014, 06:22:31 AM
For my own part, I'm going to re-read the Popol Vuh when I find it again and see if I can get inspiration for a Mexican/Aztec branch of vampirism. (It's technically Mayan, but I'm willing to overlook that in favor of geographical expediency.) I remember something about a Hell of Bones that was the domain of a rather mean, evil, and tricky kind of god, so maybe this branch would have more in common with the Tzimisce.

The Popol Vuh is more Mayan and does deal a lot with the hero brothers and their father.  Kindof cool as it relates to the Dusk till Dawn tv show, but even that is technically a separate tradition from the Lords of Night from the Aztec mythology.  And there is one of the Lords of Night (they are a real thing) that is snake oriented.  I don't know if the creators of the show will go that way or with the Mayan lords of Xibalba, I'm guessing more towards the Aztec influence personally.  Which means snake oriented which prolly means http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chalchiuhtlicue (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chalchiuhtlicue) or http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tlaloc. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tlaloc.)  I'm thinking of basing my Aztec group off of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Itztli (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Itztli) . It's a bit more primitive and wild than the Greek lineage.  Female oriented.  In Aztec culture a person lived *as the god* for one year and then was sacrificed in that god's name.  I'm thinking the god came down and revived the body afterward, but I'm still playing with the idea.

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on May 16, 2014, 04:12:07 PM

@ Radical21
For animal association, any solitary violent predator sounds like it would do. Animals famous for going it alone are the ones along the line of the wolverine (considered to vicious to be sociable), the eagle (the high-flyin' solo type), the aforementioned lone wolf (though traditionally wolves are first thought of as a pack; it works for the monsters who attacked the Founder, but doesn't work quite as well for the Founder himself), and of all things, the weasel (it's sneaky and mean-looking). If you like the association with the eagle, for inspiration on the monsters, check out the first Beast Master movie. There are some cool-looking bird-monster-people-eating critters in there. Though they may be hawkish instead of aquiline...
Are you talking north-western Europe as in France, or north-western Europe as in Denmark/Norway? I don't think people of the Neolithic era could've managed to migrate to the British Isles. From the sound of it, I'm guessing more Denmark/Norway.


I was talking around the region of the Netherlands/Denmark/Sweden/Norway etc... also the British isles because there was migration to there at the late neolithic era although I think that based on the genetic finding it is more likely that the migration to England was from already well established Cultures at the region that is now France/Belgium and the Iberian Peninsula  that according to findings were there from the early times of the Neolithic revolution. I didn't study this part so much but even though I can imagine early civilization were afraid of the mysterious deep sea they could have built and traveled there by boats/rafts or if the sea froze during the last ice age that they could have walked on it (again I didn't study this so no idea if it actually did) also keep in mind that the water level was not the same and only started to rise towards the Neolithic revolution so the gap was smaller.  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alderney#Numismatic_history (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alderney#Numismatic_history))
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holocene (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holocene)

I'm not looking to detail the monsters too much mostly since keeping it for speculation is much more versatile towards the imagination of the reader and it would be nice if different sects within the sect could have their own views on that if we ever do a Bloodline book or so, origin stories should be vague.

The Lynx is a fairly sneaky and solitary yet powerful carnivore so I may use that one as inspiration.


Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on May 17, 2014, 02:02:57 AM
There are a few promising leads in the Popol Vuh. Apparently there were two proto-human races made by the gods. The first of these was one made of clay that turned out to be stupid, mute, and shapeless. If I went with that, I'd make vampires HAVE to drink human blood (and possibly consume human flesh and bone as well) in order to maintain their human shapes. If they stopped drinking blood, they'd collapse into their base components, in this case dirt/clay. There's already a bit of that in vampire mythology, as most vampires collapse into ash after they are destroyed.
The second race was a race of "manikins" carved out of wood. They were animate, and social, and apparently bred like rabbits, but were also stupid and didn't worship the gods in the way the gods wanted to be worshipped. So the gods basically sicced all of nature on them (from carnivorous animals all the way down to bowls, spoons, and tortilla griddles!) and "pulverized" them all. Granted, it doesn't sound very vampiric, but they apparently "had no blood, no lymph [, no bodily fluids]" (Popol Vuh Revised Edition, trans. Dennis Tedlock, pg. 71), which could explain their thirst for blood (something they don't have, but "need" to "become human"), and it could work with the process of staking - returning like to like, as in "dust to dust, ashes to ashes" - or in this case, "wood to wood".

And speaking of Xibalba, there's an excellently-named under-god guy who goes by "Blood Gatherer", and his daughter is the mother of Hunahpu and Xbalanque (the two hero-brothers of the whole book). The story of their birth is just about as far as I've gotten so far, but it seems promising to make an apocryphal spinoff, perhaps where their mother has a third, imperfect child who becomes a vampire by returning to the fold of their grandfather Blood Gatherer.
To quote: "There are the lords named Scab Stripper and Blood Gatherer. And this is their commission: to draw blood from people." (natch; Popol Vuh, Revised Edition, trans. Dennis Tedlock, pg. 92)

For animal associations, owls seem to be the messengers of the Lords of Death, so they could probably double as being associated with vampires. Silent, predatory night creatures. It fits.

As to powers... I am uncertain. But the basic strength, endurance, and speed would probably apply. If Hunahpu and Xbalanque won their battles primarily through their "genius"/smarts, then perhaps the imperfect child could be brutish and strong, and win primarily through strength. I'm also thinking a Necromancy/Mortis type of sorcery these vampires can practice, since they're associated with the Lords of Death.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on May 18, 2014, 05:08:52 AM
*** WIP ***

Blood Lineage: Tzitzimimeh

Founder: Itzpapalotl the Clawed Butterfly.  It was during the month of Itzpapalotl's mortal avatar's designated sacrifice that the Spanish conquistadors landed and began to attack the native Aztec populations.  The conquistadors put an end to ritual sacrifice, unfortunately just before Itzpapalotl's living avatar was supposed to be sacrificed.  Instead, the avatar was spared by the Spanish. In retribution, Itzpapalotl descended from the stars and in a rage traded her blood with her avatar, damning her to a cursed existence and then began a plan to punish those who had broken the old rules. Itzy continued to take her vengeance out on the Aztec people, but when she realized that no other gods or Tzitzimimeh had descended with her, she slowly began to shift her anger towards the Spanish instead, using her power to influence her avatar's progeny.

Blood Strengths: Beauty, Invisibility, Morphing Claws, Quickness, Darkness

Associated Animals: Bat, Moth, Birds, Fire (? maybe not the right place?), Deer

Blood Weaknesses:  special weakness against the sun, but reversed during rare periods of a solar eclipse (edit: maybe they can actually act and go out in "daylight" during a solar eclipse (minutes at most).).

Power Base:  Seduction, Stealth, Manipulation, Lies, Secrets, Beauty, Predominant creation of female vampires
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on May 19, 2014, 03:36:24 AM
Update and some more WIP:

//Work in Progress

The Bloodline : Dragutharr (placeholder for now)
 
Founder: The Founder was a migrating tribesman during the Neolithic era.
The land in which the tribe was farming became corrupt and the tribe began wandering to the north-west of europe to find new land. While travelling his tribe was massacred by monsters(Demons? Prehistoric Animals? Mythological creatures? God? Elves?)  by the shores of a lake surrounded by giant rocks . Only the Founder, and three of his friends survived the onslaught by hiding in the lake’s shallows, the rest of the tribe were either dead or captured.
 While the Monsters were feasting on the fallen, the survivors sought to escape , to do so the Founder stealthily killed one of the monsters, as he did so he tasted the monster’s blood and gained some of its power and bloodlust, instead of escaping the Founder sought to kill more of the monsters, taking them by surprise with his new power he spilled and gorged on their blood and gaining more of their power. 
But the Gods didn’t like that the Founder was gaining so much power and as the battle-worn and wounded Founder was washed with the blood of his enemies after his victory ,the Gods made it so his Friends did not recognize him and thought he was a monster, they trapped and killed the Founder.
In the aftermath only one of the survivors, a seer, was able to see through the god’s deception. after the others left she dragged the founders body to the shadow of the stone and resurrected him (using monster blood?) but the Founder was filled with bloodlust and couldn’t help but gorge on her blood, she cursed him as the last drop of blood escaped her veins.

((The Founder wandered the more some more, by some variations becoming one of the gods to civilizations he encountered: using his strength he built megalithic circular stone monuments/altars where mortals made sacrifices to him?))

Dark Ages: TBD

Modern Day: TBD

Alternate variations on story:TBD
Associated animal: Lynx (sneaky solitary predatory animal)
Weakness:  Enemies receive dreams that hint of the location of the gate to their stone circle/ haven and during solstice nights and equinox they must remain inside the circle.
Powers: Potence, Auspex?/Obfuscate?, Misc discipline?
Power-base: ?Intimidation, ?Lore/Faith, ?Shapechange


//<Maybe WIP , tell me what you think>

Bloodline Lineage: Lilu / Eloh

Founder:  The Lilu (or ‘Eloh’ as the later emergent male offshoot of the bloodline are called)  claims the lineage true founder , Lilith , escaped the ‘Garden of Eden’ located in the region of ancient Mesopotamia.  The garden was a cage built by extraterrestrials to study and nurture proto-humans and other animals ,  to change them(and study them) in a controlled environment  before injecting them back into the earth.
 Lillith and the other extraterrestrials who built the garden were an augmented , immortal form of advanced humans, scholars above all..
According to the story the Garden of Eden was destroyed after Adam and Eve escaped from it prematurely. Lilith however refused to abandon the earth despite being unable to withstand the earth’s sun.

As civilization evolved Lilith used her blood to transform worthy female that could carry on her legacy,  however time and time again the transformation made the women barren. Lillith was also known for seducing and feeding on the blood of males as well as experimenting on human infants to horrific ends. It is said that after some time Lilith abandoned her creations , gifting her first ‘daughter’ with hair that could form into bloodsucking tendrils or allow for flight when unbound..

 Introduction of transformed Males(Eloh) into the bloodline became gradually more acceptable through the ages although even in the modern nights they are rarely able to advance to high status within the Lineage.

The Blood Lineage had to be secretive of their heretical beliefs , using seduction to lure their prey.

Powers: Hirah (traditionally only taught to females) , Demon form(minor transformation power traditionally only taught to males) , Auspex, Presence.
(if we are using a system other than V20 let me know what it is) 

Associated animals: Barn Owl

Weakness: Heightened Passion/Urges makes stopping during feeding or other hedonistic activities harder + their controversial beliefs and darwinism are barely tolerated by other lineages and must remain secret..

Note: I am considering a different mesopotamian blood lineage instead but either way it seems that the culture’s various vampire traditions were all female seductress.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on May 21, 2014, 05:54:38 PM
Gentlemen, please check your PM's for a discussion of terminology for the Origin Project. 

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on May 21, 2014, 05:59:00 PM
Personally, I'm getting tired of the old standbys of "Strength", "Dexterity", "Constitution", etc. For my RPG, I just swapped out some synonyms for the same effect: Strength became Brawn, Dexterity was broken up into Reflexes and Acrobatics (because a gymnast is not automatically going to be good at picking locks, no matter what most RPGs have to say), and Constitution became Hardiness and Stamina.
My approach to what characters can and cannot do is based off a slightly different model than what we see in most RPGs; I have lots of Attributes/Stats/Personal Characteristics, but fewer skills and abilities.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on May 21, 2014, 06:07:15 PM
I'm fine with that, but you're describing what to call/name those basic attributes and my terminology was based more around Blood Strength powers.  How to structure and what to call the basic attributes is certainly another discussion we'd need to have if fleshing this out to a full game, but can probably be left out if just creating the IP... I think.

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on May 21, 2014, 07:15:23 PM
Can we create this in a different discussion titled " Origin Project : Mechanics" while this topic will remain "Origin Project: Lore" ?

I think we can all agree that VTM/VTR system has flaws or things that don't make much sense but that is a lengthy discussion in itself that should probably take place in another topic so we don't get lost in our posting and can still get feedback on the lore stuff

Edit: About Blood Lineages : the way I see it most Lineages do not include any organization/politics while some special ones do due to it being part of the concept (kind of similar to how Tremere, Assamite, Setite, Giovanni, etc have this inner-sect thing)
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on June 04, 2014, 12:58:34 AM
Added another Lineage:

//Work in Progress

Blood Lineage : Dragutharr (placeholder for now)
 
Founder: The Founder was a migrating tribesman during the Neolithic era.
The land in which the tribe was farming became corrupt and the tribe began wandering to the north-west of europe to find new land. While travelling his tribe was massacred by monsters(Demons? Prehistoric Animals? Mythological creatures? God? Elves?)  by the shores of a lake surrounded by giant rocks . Only the Founder, and three of his friends survived the onslaught by hiding in the lake’s shallows, the rest of the tribe were either dead or captured.
 While the Monsters were feasting on the fallen, the survivors sought to escape , to do so the Founder stealthily killed one of the monsters, as he did so he tasted the monster’s blood and gained some of its power and bloodlust, instead of escaping the Founder sought to kill more of the monsters, taking them by surprise with his new power he spilled and gorged on their blood and gaining more of their power. 
But the Gods didn’t like that the Founder was gaining so much power and as the battle-worn and wounded Founder was washed with the blood of his enemies after his victory ,the Gods made it so his Friends did not recognize him and thought he was a monster, they trapped and killed the Founder.
In the aftermath only one of the survivors, a seer, was able to see through the god’s deception. after the others left she dragged the founders body to the shadow of the stone and resurrected him (using monster blood?) but the Founder was filled with bloodlust and couldn’t help but gorge on her blood, she cursed him as the last drop of blood escaped her veins.

((The Founder wandered the more some more, by some variations becoming one of the gods to civilizations he encountered: using his strength he built megalithic circular stone monuments/altars where mortals made sacrifices to him?))

Dark Ages: TBD

Modern Day: TBD

Blood Strengths:

Associated animal: Lynx (sneaky solitary predatory animal)

Weakness:  Enemies receive dreams that hint of the location of the gate to their stone circle/ haven and during solstice nights and equinox they must remain inside the circle.

Power-base: ?Intimidation, ?Lore/Faith, ?Shapechange



Bloodline Lineage: Lilu / Eloh

Founder:  The Lilu (or ‘Eloh’ as the later emergent male offshoot of the bloodline are called)  claims the lineage true founder , Lilith , escaped the ‘Garden of Eden’ located in the region of ancient Mesopotamia.  The garden was a cage built by extraterrestrials to study and nurture proto-humans and other animals ,  to change them(and study them) in a controlled environment  before injecting them back into the earth.
 Lillith and the other extraterrestrials who built the garden were an augmented , immortal form of advanced humans, scholars above all..
According to the story the Garden of Eden was destroyed after Adam and Eve escaped from it prematurely. Lilith however refused to abandon the earth despite being unable to withstand the earth’s sun.

As civilization evolved Lilith used her blood to transform worthy female that could carry on her legacy,  however time and time again the transformation made the women barren. Lillith was also known for seducing and feeding on the blood of males as well as experimenting on human infants to horrific ends. It is said that after some time Lilith abandoned her creations , gifting her first ‘daughter’ with hair that could form into bloodsucking tendrils or allow for flight when unbound..

 Introduction of transformed Males(Eloh) into the bloodline became gradually more acceptable through the ages although even in the modern nights they are rarely able to advance to high status within the Lineage.

The Blood Lineage had to be secretive of their heretical beliefs , using seduction to lure their prey.

Powers: Hirah (traditionally only taught to females) , Demon form(minor transformation power traditionally only taught to males) , Auspex, Presence.
(if we are using a system other than V20 let me know what it is) 

Associated animals: Barn Owl

Weakness: Heightened Passion/Urges makes stopping during feeding or other hedonistic activities harder + their controversial beliefs and darwinism are barely tolerated by other lineages and must remain secret..




Blood lineage : Reven

Founder :  Unknown founder ,historically their center of influence spread from the area of the british isles during the dark ages. the Lineage is fairly secretive and its origin is ambiguously claimed to be the fabled isle of Avalon where King Arthur was sent to after his death to become immortal. Throughout all ages the members of the Lineage remained secretive about what they are, commanding their mortal peons from the shadows and covering themselves completely in armor to preserve their incognito status . traditionally the older members of the lineage are an embodiment of the unknown ,revealing thing, not even a sign of flesh behind their animated garments, younger members may be more liberal but one have to wonder if they are created the same as these elder hiddens ones.
Few may have revealed the hidden ones but the lack of consensus in their account means they are dismissed as nothing more than legend or rumor amongst the vampires.

Blood-Strengths: Invisibility, The Unknown fear?, Control , Strength,  Sight, Intelligence 

Associated animal: Octopus, Stingray , Jellyfish,

Blood Weakness: When someone knows what their edge goal is , their power is diminished against the one who knows it..

Power Base : Large Mortal Organizations, Secrets, Proxy soldiers
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: silhouette666 on December 19, 2014, 01:58:42 AM
Alrighty. Nigama invited me here to post some ideas. I skimmed through a few here. I will say they are reminiscent of Bloodlines, but only because those clans inspired these new ones. I am obviously open for changes considering I wrote this over a year ago (and haven't developed the ideas since).

[All ancestors are derived from real folklore from different civilizations and belief systems. The creation myth of the vampires is fiction and created by yours truly.]

There are several different vampire races, each with their own origin.

There are vampires who originate from Lilith and Samael. Lilith rejected her role as Adam’s wife, left the Garden of Eden and later had a relationship with archangel Samael. Lilith became a succubus. Her children were called Lilum, who are night spirits that attack humans.

When Eve ate the forbidden fruit, all who were once immortal lost that privilege. All of a sudden, Lilith’s children were no longer immortal. Neither was she or her lover.

Just because Lilith’s children lost their powers and immortality did not change their behavior. The now-human spirits lusted through women and men whether it was consensual or not. One of Lilith’s children impregnated a human woman involuntarily. However, the woman gave birth to the child, worrying whether her child would be evil as well. However, the blood line descended and descended thousands of years. The direct bloodline descendant of Lilith walks around in our modern day.

The Lilum, however, were facing a retaliation against the abuse and terror imposed on countless victims. Lilith worried about her children. The thought of any of their deaths filled her with immense paranoia. She contact the Devil, Gadriel, for aid.

A deal with the devil was made. The union of a fallen angel and a blood-sucking demon was the most incredulous abomination in existence; therefore, the devil gave her children the succubus identity along with Samael’s godlike powers as an angel. These powers include mind manipulation, seduction, super speed and super strength. Also, rapid healing and recovery from damage. A vampire from Lilith’s bloodline can withstand 50 bullets.

Early Lilums who were born as night spirits were given birth from Lilith’s loins. Lilums in later generations were given the dark gift through siring and blood transfer. This could also manipulate the strength of the newer vampires, considering they did not grow in Lilith’s womb.

Weaknesses include sunlight, removal or destruction of the brain or heart. Most legendary weaknesses do not work. Crucifixes do not destroy or intimidate Lilums, but only distract or offend the vampires if the crucifix is present.

Lilith’s powers are uncertain, but legend has it that she was able to paralyze her prey, including the immortal. In some cases, she practiced in diablerie. As a vampire, they can see images of the victim’s life as the blood gushes from the veins. In doing this, not only do you gain knowledge of the person, but some other information you may not have known before that could be useful. Or, if the blood were to be immortal, one’s power would increase significantly. Depending on how old the immortal is would determine how much power would be transferred. There is no life without blood. Humans can’t live without it and neither can vampires. Immortal diablerie is forbidden in all vampire law. It is the biggest sin to commit in the modern world of vampires.

The practice of diablerie was raising attention to human governments as more and more people went missing. Vampires participated in politics, carrying the flag in secret to keep vampire awareness to a minimum. This was when vampire ancients, created from Lilith’s children themselves, found a way to hold her captive. This would not only keep the humans safe,but to keep her safe. She is supposed to be in the hands of some of the strongest, oldest vampires to ever exist, but these are all word of mouth. These tales are just as believable as the words in the human Bible, but can the modern-day vampire believe in the vampire folklore if they did not believe the human folklore?

------

There are vampires who originate from Cain. From the biblical story, he is the grandson of Adam and Eve. In actuality, according to vampire lore, Cain and Abel were the children of Adam of Eve. However, Cain’s true father, Gadriel showed Eve the pleasures of the flesh.

The Bible says Eve was tempted by the devil by tasting “forbidden fruit”. Think of this as a cleaned up analogy and nothing more. Eve tasted Gadriel’s forbidden fruit and God removed immortality.

Eve hid this affair from Adam and Adam believed Cain was his. Cain was tempted by his father and killed his brother Abel. Cain was banished and cursed by God, punishing him with the hunger for the blood of the living.

These vampires are called Cainites. Cainites are not created inside a womb, but from siring and blood transfer. Again, this can affect newer vampires’ abilities being sired farther and farther from the stronger bloodline. This bloodline is more likely to be weaker than others as far as strength and rapid healing.

Gadriel taught men of warfare, women of beauty and even witchcraft. Cainites obtain the same powers as the Lilum; however, these vampires practice witchcraft. They are able to cast spells far more powerfully than a human witch. This includes setting an object on fire with one’s mind, moving objects with a sleight of a hand or mind reading.

---------

Gadriel has his own breed of vampires, too. He, himself, breeded with humans. This race of vampire began in the womb but the bloodline continues through siring and blood transfer. These vampires are called the Nefandus, which is Latin for “not to be spoken of”. Gadriel was supposedly the name of the devil before Satan. Churches decided to change the name; therefore, it would not be spoken of. Consider Satan his nickname.

This race holds the same powers as the Lilum as well.

In this case, these vampires rely heavily on seduction. Some of these vampires continue the bloodline within the womb, as it is tradition in certain elder covens. While Lilith was a seductress herself, she did not seduce men for pleasure, but for his blood and flesh. Her motive was hunger, which Gadriel’s was lust. Just like the regular struggle of controlling a vampire’s bloodlust, their sexual lust is just as difficult to withhold.

The  vampires of the Nefandus are not only lustful but aren’t respectful toward authority. While this race of vampire is incredibly knowledgeable thanks to Gadriel’s lust for education, this race receives incredible incite when sired.

It is not a schizophrenic insight, but more like gaining Gadriel’s wisdom and inheriting his sponge-like brain. Besides the lust-craving, they also spend a great deal of time researching, reading and writing. Some of the Nefandus publish their works, but only under a pen name to protect the realm and themselves. Some of these publications have been incredibly useful to the human world and had progressed and transcended into a new world adaptable for the Nefandus.

---------

The fourth race is the Ibrida. Ibrida means “hybrid”. The Mesopotamians believed in a creature named Lamashtu. She was a combination of a lion’s head, the body of a donkey and the feet of a bird. Her hideous complexion terrorized the people, but her most horrific act was stealing newborns from their mothers, sucking the blood and eating the flesh of the babies and then she would devour the mother.

Gallu, another infamous demon of this era, was an offspring of hell. One of the Gallu demons and Lamashtu decided to come together and create a blood bond. This bond would create a new supernatural life with magic. These vampires take qualities from both demons: Lamashtu in eating flesh and both demons in disfigurement. They did not want to create a being as disgusting as themselves, however, but one who can pass as a human.

There created the Ibrida. This vampire is still human-like, but sometimes disfigurement or rotting may occur. These vampires have a special quality all of their own:  they cannot survive solely on human blood. They must consume human flesh. These vampires are experts at storing meat to slowly consume overtime. These vampires also travel a significant amount so they cannot be found or tracked by local human law enforcement when more and more people turn up missing.

-----------

The last and fifth vampire race is the Nekros. Necromancy is a type of magic which brings the dead back to life, moreso summoning a spirit. Legends of necromancy practice dates back to Ancient Greece.

Human witches and shamans practiced in necromancy to communicate with the dead, but Western civilization were able to raise the dead. The human Bible discusses necromancy, saying it is a sin to bring someone back to life using necromancy, or if someone were brought back using necromancy.

The witches and warlocks of the vampires are Cainites. Necromancy was common in their covens, but to make a complete other being was a new idea. Using vampire blood as the sacrifice, some humans were either chosen shortly after their death or were killed by the coven to revive. The ceremony curses the human soul to remain in purgatory. The soul cannot pass on and would remain on Earth, but with the need to feed on God’s children. The sire of the Nekros being would the one who sacrificed their blood for the ceremony.

These vampires’ natural form would be invisible or in an orb-like, apparition form. It takes their own power to become visible to humans and other vampires. The Cainites had no idea of the power they had created and wondered if their new race could be controlled. Nekros are the breed of vampires you want on your side, or they will destroy you. Their ability to naturally be invisible to the naked eye is their greatest advantage and they are incredibly difficult to destroy, being that they are only a ghost-like demon and don’t have a natural physical form. Their only known method of destruction is the sun.

---------

I hope these ideas aren't too shitty. I actually dug the ideas with vampires associating with aliens. That's not something I've seen before. The whole mutation thing is reminiscent of Underworld, which I dig. It makes it less mythical and more biological.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on December 21, 2014, 02:48:08 AM
I spent last night reading this and then had to work all of today. Gotta work all of tomorrow, too, so figured I might as well post on this when I got home tonight.

So, before I start giving any praise/criticism I just wanna get two things out of the way so that my biases are known.  First, I'm fucking tired of Christianity.  Also, I don't swear often on these forums, but I really think this occasion deserves the extra emphasis to get across my emotion on the subject.  I grew up in a Christian society, I haven't believed in it ever, and it wears on me every time a new book or show or game uses Christianity as if it's the sole, right form of belief, or that it has any Truth to it at all.  However, I recognize that just because *I'm* tired of it, others are not and it can still form the basis of a fun game to play...  still... the world is such a rich place, with many cultures and religious traditions and many different monsters.  Let's use them instead of beating the Judeo-Christian donkey more.  Okay... /rant.

But that leads to my next point... IMO, White Wolf did a really great job with the Cain mythos and Christianity as a backdrop in general.  It really feels a bit too close to home to be talking about "Cainites" and vampires descended from Cain to me. If anything, in our new game, that should be a joke that elders tell new vampires who ask too many questions the elders don't know the answers to.

Okay, so now you know I've got a grudge against Christianity and not your ideas!  We can proceed.

To what I liked...  I really liked what you did with the idea of Lillith. She is used in the WoD but as a kind of shady, demonic character that teaches Cain many of his powers and abilities. However, I think some of the back story starts to get convoluted and when the devil himself enters the question, things start to get absurd. IMO, it's really hard to have God or the Devil, such larger than life beings, as directly part of the story.  Keep it as real to human life and existence as you can.  There's a LOT to work with if you work backwards from a Female Vampire (mainly) Lineage.  There are Greek examples of female cults (Artemis/Diana), there's the Gorgons and Echidna in Greek myth, and you mentioned Lamashtu (essentially Lillith in a Mesopotamian context).  I think there's SO MUCH there to work with outside of a Judeo-Christian context and it's really undeveloped as a vehicle for an RPG.  I think it's a great idea for a vampire origin.  I'd just lose the "shacking up with Samael" bit, too... it doesn't add anything to the Lillith story and makes things more complicated than they need to be (having the Devil fuse them together and giving them awesomesauce powers for... um... reasons).  The hybrid story sounds a LOT like the Lillith and Samael story 'cept with the names changed to Lamashtu and Gallu.

I've already said that I feel vamps based on Cain is treading on a path already well traveled by White Wolf.  The only thing worth adding/correcting is that Cain was the first born child of Adam and Eve, not their grandson, at least according to Genesis.

Next up is vampires descended directly from the Devil...  hmm.  You called them the Nefandus, I'm guessing from the Mage Nefandii or from the latin "nefando" meaning base or vile.  My first is with involving such a powerful figure as The Devil as the creator.  There were a group of angels that fell in love with humanity, before Satan rebelled.  They were supposed to have watched over humanity but some fell in love and had children with the mortals. Most were killed off by god, but there is the implication that some of the angels committing the sin and possibly their children managed to hide. These beings were known as the Nephilim.  Perhaps the way they managed to keep their immortality was to drink the blood of humans and that's how they stayed hidden from the eyes of god for so long?  Instead of being descended specifically from The Devil (gah, it's like saying a line of vampires is directly descended from God), they could be descended from angels/fallen angels in general (possibly including the Accuser (satan)).

Your last idea I think is the most original and I like it the most. The idea of the Nekros recalls to me the Arch-Lich, that, despite it's name, is actually more powerful than a normal lich but lacks the body of one.  It's an interesting mix between a ghost/spirit and a vampire, especially in how they do not always have bodies but can form them temporarily with effort.

So, again, I'm biased against Christianity, but what I'd really like to see fleshed out more is the Lamashtu Lineage and the Nekros Lineage.  There was some really interesting stuff I noticed in the Lamashtu legend on Pazuzu.  Basically people would wear amulets of Pazuzu to ward off Lamashtu because myth/legends say that Pazuzu has beaten Lamashtu before (and the implication is that he could again).  The best part is... Pazuzu himself is an evil god!  Using an evil god to protect yourself from another evil god just seems RIPE for a vampire game. :)

You have some awesome ideas for sure.  At the end of the day this whole "project" is kindof open source, so you can pick and choose to explore whatever tickles your fancy.  No one is going to tell you what's right or wrong.  The whole point of the multiple origin stories is the possibility that none and all are true at the same time.  Can't wait to see how these ideas continue to develop.

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: silhouette666 on December 21, 2014, 04:36:05 AM
So, again, I'm biased against Christianity, but what I'd really like to see fleshed out more is the Lamashtu Lineage and the Nekros Lineage.  There was some really interesting stuff I noticed in the Lamashtu legend on Pazuzu.  Basically people would wear amulets of Pazuzu to ward off Lamashtu because myth/legends say that Pazuzu has beaten Lamashtu before (and the implication is that he could again).  The best part is... Pazuzu himself is an evil god!  Using an evil god to protect yourself from another evil god just seems RIPE for a vampire game. :)

You have some awesome ideas for sure.  At the end of the day this whole "project" is kindof open source, so you can pick and choose to explore whatever tickles your fancy.  No one is going to tell you what's right or wrong.  The whole point of the multiple origin stories is the possibility that none and all are true at the same time.  Can't wait to see how these ideas continue to develop.

Nigama

I appreciate your honest input. I would like to say that I'm not Christian. In fact, I'm an atheist, but I am a bit fascinated with Lilith. I wasn't taken back by your rant at all. xD I completely get you on getting a bit too close to VtM. I had to look into things a bit because even the Christianity myth is not something I'm completely educated in.

I do agree that Lamashtu and the "Nekros" clans are the most unique, and the Nekros would be my favorite. I, however, don't want Lamashtu to be remotely comparable to VTM's Nosferatu clan. Should they appear "rotted" or could they be more animal-like? Kind of Gangrel as far as transformation, but not into a wolf-like creature but in somewhat of a resemblance to how Lamashtu was described? Not really sure.

The Nekros was kind of inspired by Tremere, thinking that if the Tremere can create Gargoyles, they can go as far as to create a spirit-like vampire. If there IS anything similar to this in the clanbooks, I apologize... I haven't read them all.

I know I had read earlier in this thread, or at least I thought I did, was the idea of cannibalism and the Nagaraja. Pisha, honestly, was one of my favorite characters in Bloodlines and I would have loved to have dived into that a bit more (which is why I added the clan that consumes flesh instead of just drinking blood). But it is true in that being a vampire and eating flesh are very different things. I suppose Nagaraja clan aren't really vampires? Anyways, getting off topic.

Now, I know in the VTM world, sex is not a thing at all. However, in other vampire films, sex is used not to seduce always but as an actual love scene. Anne Rice, however, nothing really sexual happens but her vampires are still fairly human in the desire for companionship. VTM vamps aren't very much like that. I mean, sure, you can team up with Camarilla or Anarchs or whatever but it's not really because they're lonely. Again, if the clanbooks explained this further, I don't know the details but some examples like Underworld show humanlike characteristics. I find the idea of vampires bearing children to be something interesting. It'd make vampires more of a biological mutation rather than a religious myth.

Something to think about.
Again, I appreciate the honesty.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on December 21, 2014, 04:49:34 AM
For the benefit of everyone I stayed away for a long time only to find now (not very surprising) that Project Vaulderie has been cancelled.
((Edit: in the end I broke down and wrote this :
CCPGames, since community efforts to renew VTMR/VTMB on modern engines have received a 'C&D notice', I think its only fair that CCPGames/WW would present an alternative that does not simply close the lid over a community of gamers that have been playing/modding the now outdated, World of Darkness PC games for over 12-14 years.

We want a new World of Darkness PC Game or remake of the unique multilayer mode featured in the VTM:R game by nihilistic. I ask you let us know your intentions for the IP going forward and begin engaging the World of Darkness community on a semi-regular basis...

Don't be another corporation that jealously sits on an IP only to bury it in the pages of history..
))

Currently I'm still playing NWN in hopes of creating/finding RP, but the truth is that I miss VTM in its most original form. If this could grow to be something like that great, if not less great.. I think each  of us probably has that amazing VTM Chronicle they will remember for the rest of their lives and want to get back to. I hope the end result of this Origin project would allow to accomplish a similar experience.

Since I'm not really contributor to this anymore I just want to say that IMO originality doesn't really factor here and most of the ideas here already appeared in one form or the other, doesn't mean they are all less interesting to play.
The result of trying to force originality would probably be something like League of Legends lore  where the theme is something obscure to include as many bizarre ideas as possible. Maybe even steampunk/anime Vampires. :justabite:
 
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: silhouette666 on December 22, 2014, 07:03:15 PM
Ah, so a spirit vampire does not sound original at all? I don't think I've seen anything like that unless you have, Radical.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Radical21 on December 22, 2014, 08:09:11 PM
Ah, so a spirit vampire does not sound original at all? I don't think I've seen anything like that unless you have, Radical.

Like I said, I don't think originality matters here at this point. If it is original great, if it isn't doesn't matter. IMO What matters is how does it play, what history can be built around it and how you flesh out the concept..

And yes Spirit Vampire is not that original, I have seen it in various other settings including Legacy of Kain and Pokemon.
I'd be more interested if I knew WHY it is a Spirit Vampire, How does it relate to the world and the other vampires and why does it keep existing as it is.
For the rest I also ask myself, does spirit vampire play well with the theme and mood of what we are creating?
I think that is more important than if its original or not.
Now please stop asking me these questions because you are probably only going to get answers like this from me and I don't want to discourage you.


I should also add that you don't have to come up with a new gimmick for people to appreciate what you create. In fact most of the concepts White Wolf seem designed based off something from history or a role they wanted for that archetype and then they fleshed out things around it rather than start from having the 'gimmick powers' and then figure out why they are there.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on December 23, 2014, 06:30:22 AM
Well.... there is the famous phrase "There's nothing new under the sun" (Ecclesiastes 1:9).  And another.. "Creativity is knowing how to hide your sources" (Albert Einstein).

I think there is definitely something to be said for "creativity" and "freshness" in a game.  If the game feels stale and rehashed, people won't want to play it.  But I also recognize that nothing is truly original, all work is inspired and derivative, it's just how well hidden or unknown are your inspirations... 

I can only say what I'd like to see more of.  I'd like to see the Lamashtu stuff fleshed out more and I think personally I'd play with the more animalistic (merging of the animal parts with human body) and primal (it's from such a primal time period) aspects.  With the Nekros I think I'm with Radical in that I want to see how they function in the world and how they keep going.  I'd be disappointed to see the same thing as with Gargoyles (slaves of magick wielding vampires struggling for freedom).  The Nekros do seem to have some serious drawbacks (from what I've read) and yet they could be incredibly scary and frightening in their own way.


Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: silhouette666 on December 23, 2014, 06:32:05 PM
Well.... there is the famous phrase "There's nothing new under the sun" (Ecclesiastes 1:9).  And another.. "Creativity is knowing how to hide your sources" (Albert Einstein).

I think there is definitely something to be said for "creativity" and "freshness" in a game.  If the game feels stale and rehashed, people won't want to play it.  But I also recognize that nothing is truly original, all work is inspired and derivative, it's just how well hidden or unknown are your inspirations... 

I can only say what I'd like to see more of.  I'd like to see the Lamashtu stuff fleshed out more and I think personally I'd play with the more animalistic (merging of the animal parts with human body) and primal (it's from such a primal time period) aspects.  With the Nekros I think I'm with Radical in that I want to see how they function in the world and how they keep going.  I'd be disappointed to see the same thing as with Gargoyles (slaves of magick wielding vampires struggling for freedom).  The Nekros do seem to have some serious drawbacks (from what I've read) and yet they could be incredibly scary and frightening in their own way.


Nigama

I suppose I was thinking the Nekros could be a lot like the Kuei-Jin (or at least this is how I think the Kuei-Jin feed) in that they don't have to drink blood, but that they can still take the energy from a source. Being an orb or apparition is obviously their natural form but to be seen by humans, or even vampires, they have to use their energy to be seen. I doubt that they would be slaves in that the Nekros would incredibly difficult to control. Their makers, in fact, almost regretted their creation to give a clan so much of an advantage.

What drawbacks are those exactly?
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on January 28, 2015, 07:05:55 PM
Well.... there is the famous phrase "There's nothing new under the sun" (Ecclesiastes 1:9).  And another.. "Creativity is knowing how to hide your sources" (Albert Einstein).

I think there is definitely something to be said for "creativity" and "freshness" in a game.  If the game feels stale and rehashed, people won't want to play it.  But I also recognize that nothing is truly original, all work is inspired and derivative, it's just how well hidden or unknown are your inspirations... 

I can only say what I'd like to see more of.  I'd like to see the Lamashtu stuff fleshed out more and I think personally I'd play with the more animalistic (merging of the animal parts with human body) and primal (it's from such a primal time period) aspects.  With the Nekros I think I'm with Radical in that I want to see how they function in the world and how they keep going.  I'd be disappointed to see the same thing as with Gargoyles (slaves of magick wielding vampires struggling for freedom).  The Nekros do seem to have some serious drawbacks (from what I've read) and yet they could be incredibly scary and frightening in their own way.


Nigama

I suppose I was thinking the Nekros could be a lot like the Kuei-Jin (or at least this is how I think the Kuei-Jin feed) in that they don't have to drink blood, but that they can still take the energy from a source. Being an orb or apparition is obviously their natural form but to be seen by humans, or even vampires, they have to use their energy to be seen. I doubt that they would be slaves in that the Nekros would incredibly difficult to control. Their makers, in fact, almost regretted their creation to give a clan so much of an advantage.

What drawbacks are those exactly?

Well, the main source of their power is also their main drawback; they don't have a body.

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on January 28, 2015, 07:22:06 PM
I've always been a bit uncomfortable with the idea of vampires being much more (or less) than corpses who drink blood and burn in the sun. If they're incorporeal, they sound an awful lot more like an adaptation of the Orpheus game than something directly out of Vampire. I think one of the reasons that Vampire works so well is that vampires are corporeal - they CAN be destroyed, sometimes easily (like in sunlight), and they have physical, corporeal urges to fulfill.
Now, of course, this is a new IP, with new rules and expectations... but what does being incorporeal really add to the experience?
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on January 28, 2015, 07:27:47 PM
*** WIP ***

Blood Lineage: Golem

Founder: The Founder is the original golem created by Rava in an attempt to recreate what JHVH did when creating mankind. It was noted to be a fake and was destroyed. Made from clay or stone, many times over the years golem was remade by different philosophers in an attempt to recreate life, only to be destroyed again when found to be imperfect.

Eventually, a man named Gaon R. Eliyahu Ba'al Shem saw a more utilitarian use for the golem; to perform his hard labor. For many long years golem performed his labor dutifully, silently, capably. However, when his master saw that as each year passed the golem became stronger and tougher he grew afraid. Gaon decided to kill the golem before he grew too powerful to destroy, but the golem had grown fond of existence and resisted, even wounding his master. But it was too late for the golem and he was destroyed again.

Many years the golem lay dormant, without form, until Judah Loew ben Bezalel, a Polish rabbi created him to defend the Jews against attacks from the Christian ruler. For the first time, he was given a name, Josef. Again, he did his job admirably and many lives were saved during the pogroms and antisemitic attacks in the late 16th century. However, again, the golem grew too fond of life. Before he could become so powerful as to scare his controller, he made the mistake of falling in love with a Jewish woman. When his desires became known to his master, he was again attacked, broken into pieces and stored in the attic of a Jewish synagogue. There, by sheer force of will, the golem reformed himself, becoming his own master.

Now free of his bonds he sought immediately for the source of his desires. She, however, reacted with horror at the monstrosity which appeared before her and overcome with fright she fought and then ran. Feelings wounded by the rejection, the golem went on a murderous rampage, during which he learned that drinking the blood of his enemies gave him strength and a more human complexion. After that night, the golem disappeared from the traces of history and no Jewish scholars left details of how to create another. Yet Josef, the original Golem found ways to create and pass on his gifts to mortals who are close to death.

Blood Strengths: Toughness, Strength, Shifting

Associated Stuffs: Stone, admire independence and freedom

Blood Weaknesses:  Difficulty speaking or with social skills. Those with magical sight will see strange writing in golden, foreign letters (it says "Truth" in ancient Hebrew) often over the Golem's forehead and, more rarely, over their lips. Cannot take Legerity (Supernatural Speed), but gains a free point in both Puissance and Aegis.

Power Base:  Toughness and Strength
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on January 28, 2015, 07:39:02 PM
Well, I can't answer for Silhouette, only my own interpretation for the modern nights version I'm working on. So, please, keep that in mind. I'm sure she probably has a different vision for them.

I've always been a bit uncomfortable with the idea of vampires being much more (or less) than corpses who drink blood and burn in the sun.

This will not change for the Nekros in my game. Sunlight will still kill them, they will need to drink as much blood as any other vampire, and stakes through the heart will still incapacitate (so long as it's done while the Nekros is corporeal). In fact, they will have a power that allows them different levels of substantiation, especially for physical/combat uses (thus also opening themselves up to harm/destruction).

 
Quote
If they're incorporeal, they sound an awful lot more like an adaptation of the Orpheus game than something directly out of Vampire.

I'm okay with that. I don't WANT to copy Vampire exactly, I simply want to let it inspire me. So should the fact that V:tM doesn't have a semi-incorporeal vampire type to play restrict me?  No way. That's part of the benefit of creating our own tools and backstory. At the end of the day, the question I want to ask is... is it fun?  And I don't think that can really get answered until someone plays it.

Quote
I think one of the reasons that Vampire works so well is that vampires are corporeal - they CAN be destroyed, sometimes easily (like in sunlight), and they have physical, corporeal urges to fulfill.

This is actually something I've been annoyed by in many vampire lore iterations that are out there. Why the fuck would vampires care about sex at all?  Except as a means to lure in a human to suck their blood/kill them.  But time and time again you see vampire characters, even in V:tM, falling in erotic love with other vampires or mortals.  To me, that has always be ridiculous. The closest thing to vampire sex, to me, is when Lestat and Akasha finally meet in Queen of the Damned, if I'm not mistaken. They each bite each other and stand there exchanging blood, memories, and feelings. That's so much more intimate than any two humans will ever get, imho, and in addition to the rush of constantly taking in blood, vampire blood, it'd put an orgasm to shame.

Quote
Now, of course, this is a new IP, with new rules and expectations... but what does being incorporeal really add to the experience?

It's not been done before, so it's a new experience, and it tends to force one to play the Mental and Social combat systems.

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on January 28, 2015, 08:07:18 PM
By the same token, Nigama, why does a vampire (much less an incorporeal vampire) have to get a "rush" or "orgasm" when ingesting blood? It could just be like food - you might have a really good steak, but it's nowhere near like having an orgasm. If the Nekros do turn out to be incorporeal by default, then maybe their "rush" when consuming life-essence has more to do with the fact that they get to continue to EXIST, and that their soul and mind are so much more powerful than their victims. I.e., a mental satisfaction, instead of a physical or emotional one. A sense of superiority, a rejection of oblivion, the sheer thrill of being alive after a near-death experience. That could be at least as addicting as vampire-sex.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on January 28, 2015, 08:50:47 PM
By the same token, Nigama, why does a vampire (much less an incorporeal vampire) have to get a "rush" or "orgasm" when ingesting blood? It could just be like food - you might have a really good steak, but it's nowhere near like having an orgasm. If the Nekros do turn out to be incorporeal by default, then maybe their "rush" when consuming life-essence has more to do with the fact that they get to continue to EXIST, and that their soul and mind are so much more powerful than their victims. I.e., a mental satisfaction, instead of a physical or emotional one. A sense of superiority, a rejection of oblivion, the sheer thrill of being alive after a near-death experience. That could be at least as addicting as vampire-sex.

Indeed!  :cometome:
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 06, 2015, 05:16:51 PM
Can anybody join in on the brainstorming and suggesting or do you guys already have everything/everybody you need?

Because this sounds amazeballs ^_^
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on February 07, 2015, 02:05:26 AM
Can anybody join in on the brainstorming and suggesting or do you guys already have everything/everybody you need?

Because this sounds amazeballs ^_^

Still open.  The idea in this area is not to create a certain set number of lineages.  Instead we want you to invent whatever vampire creation myth you want, ideally grounded in some real world or historical element.  You can polish it as much as you like, and you can extrapolate to the modern nights what those lineages might look like.  The idea is that all of this is open source and free to use and change so long as credit is given (essentially pointing back to Planet Vampire and acknowledging the creative genius of everyone who has posted in this thread  :rock:  ).

I'm kindof putting together my own modern nights version of a game using some of the ideas already posted here.  That game is over int he Vampire Planet RPG thread.  I called it that because of the forum we are on, but also because the main conflict is between the group that wants to stay hidden (and safe) vs those that want to openly rule the humans.  In order to handicap the "bad" guys (those that wish to rule humankind), I've made it much harder to sire.  Mass embracing is really what created the Cam and Sabbat.

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 07, 2015, 11:59:21 AM
Thanks for the answer. Can I pluck your gray matter some more?

I have a couple of ideas (will post in detail when I get to my computer, typing on my smartphone at the moment) but one of them really depends on how you imagined the world when it comes to the masquerade: is it of utmost priority, or do people coexist with supernatural creatures, or something in the middle? 
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on February 08, 2015, 02:54:47 AM
The Origin Project (this thread) is really about your idea for the lineage, its founder and how it began. 

The question you're asking, seems to be focused less on that and more on the modern nights in the Planet Vampire RPG I'm cobbling together.  In that world, cities aren't ruled so much by organizations (the Cam, the Sabbat, the Anarchs), but instead are controlled more by individuals.  In that sense, it really depends upon which city/area you live in and what the Lord is like and how he or she runs their Domain.  The Lord or Lords are essentially the strongest single vampire or strongest coalition of several vampires.  At the same time, as a vampire, you could certainly move to an area of the country where there are very few vampires, declare yourself "Lord" of the middle of nowhere and start cultivating open rule over the locals (they know you're a vampire and you just keep them in line through love or fear).

There are of course Lords that will side with the political group (names still TBD) that wants to openly rule over humanity.  Some of those vampires imagine a world where vampire and human live side by side as equals.  Others have a vision of ruling over humanity as masters.  Still others seek to enslave humankind like cattle, pigs or chickens.

There's definitely a pretty big variance in both groups.

But to return to your question... how strong is the enforcement of the rule not to reveal yourself to humankind?  Most cities have Lords or Ladies that work very hard to limit human knowledge of vampires.  They have influence in all areas of society and use this influence to squash any evidence of vampirism.

Even those that wish to buck the system, so far in the setting have done so relatively quietly for fear of backlash from the vampires in cities/areas close by.  That however is changing with a specific NPC's provocative actions setting some plot elements in motion.

Hope that's enough to get you started!   :cometome:

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 08, 2015, 11:00:16 PM
Nigama, that sounds like a really mouldable concept, I rather like it that way. Basically, one can invent whatever they like and then just move it to a territory where it's viable.

I did a little research yesterday and today, and ran into some interesting things in various mythologies (of course, many mythologies have similarities between them, and I'm certain that what I've found can be found in almost any pantheon, under a different name, so feel free to suggest another culture if you feel it would fit better)

I will just post one idea for now, and see if you guys find it any good.
It's still work in progress, these are just outlines, if you will:

1. Clan Lelwani
Lelwani is the goddess in Hittite mythology, dating back to presumably 1600-1180BC, in Hittite empire (modern day Turkey, Syria, Lebanon)
Lelwani was the goddess of death and the underworld.
My origin story for this clan goes like this:  Lelwani had a mortal lover, a great warrior by the name of Batur (means warrior in Turkish) There came a day when Batur perished in battle and went to the underworld, to be with his Lelwani forever. However, Batur was miserable without his calling and having not accomplished his biggest goal (helping his empire conquer Babylonia) begged Lelwani to bring him back to the realm of the living. Being unable to say no to the man she loved, Lelwani agreed. Being the goddess of death, however, Lelwani didn't possess the knowledge of life and rebirth, so she decided to steal the secrets of Arinniti and Istanu (gods of sun) and Kaskuh (god of moon). The secret of the moon was the first one she obtained, and being the goddess of the underworld and eternal darkness, she was able to comprehend it. But when she stole the secret of the sun, Istanu, upon realizing his secret is no longer safe (being also the god of judgement) cursed anyone who would use it to die of the sacred secret he/she stole.
Batur was resurrected but doomed to never ever walk the daylight again.
God of war, Wurrukatte, though, was apalled by the abomination that was once the warrior in his graces and forsake him, leading Batur to lose any honour, loyalty and cause he had as a warrior and leaving nothing but a bloodthirsty barbarian.
Vampires of clan Lelwani are vicious and savage, extremely proficient in battle, and only admitting the law of the fittest. They do not Embrace by drinking and then giving blood, but the new Lelwani are made if the promising human manages to wound/kill a Lelwani in battle with the vampire's own weapon.
In the modern nights, the Lelwani have learned how to control their savage nature in social situations, but only even get in social situations when they absolutely must.
Strenghts: physical prowess (greater physical stats than any other clan), proficiency with blades
Weaknesses: instantly killed by sunlight, bright artificial light does more damage than to any other clan, depictions of the sun slightly disturb a Lelwani, frenzy checks higher.
Organisation: Lelwani resemble a pack of beasts or a group of pirahnas in the sense that there is the leader who asserts his superiority by branding members of his pack (like the alpha pirahna bites the lips of other pirahnas)
They can be found inticing riot and chaos, being mercenaries, hitmen, paid soldiers etc. The other clans see them as coarse savages, but still fear they would have to battle them.
Disciplines: Fortitude, Potence, Presence



Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on February 09, 2015, 01:46:14 PM

1. Clan Lelwani

No need for Clans here... well, unless your lineage is Scottish, I guess.

Quote
Lelwani is the goddess in Hittite mythology, dating back to presumably 1600-1180BC, in Hittite empire (modern day Turkey, Syria, Lebanon)
Lelwani was the goddess of death and the underworld.
My origin story for this clan goes like this:  Lelwani had a mortal lover, a great warrior by the name of Batur (means warrior in Turkish) There came a day when Batur perished in battle and went to the underworld, to be with his Lelwani forever. However, Batur was miserable without his calling and having not accomplished his biggest goal (helping his empire conquer Babylonia) begged Lelwani to bring him back to the realm of the living. Being unable to say no to the man she loved, Lelwani agreed. Being the goddess of death, however, Lelwani didn't possess the knowledge of life and rebirth, so she decided to steal the secrets of Arinniti and Istanu (gods of sun) and Kaskuh (god of moon). The secret of the moon was the first one she obtained, and being the goddess of the underworld and eternal darkness, she was able to comprehend it. But when she stole the secret of the sun, Istanu, upon realizing his secret is no longer safe (being also the god of judgement) cursed anyone who would use it to die of the sacred secret he/she stole.
Batur was resurrected but doomed to never ever walk the daylight again.
God of war, Wurrukatte, though, was apalled by the abomination that was once the warrior in his graces and forsake him, leading Batur to lose any honour, loyalty and cause he had as a warrior and leaving nothing but a bloodthirsty barbarian.

Love it!

Quote
Vampires of clan Lelwani are vicious and savage, extremely proficient in battle, and only admitting the law of the fittest. They do not Embrace by drinking and then giving blood, but the new Lelwani are made if the promising human manages to wound/kill a Lelwani in battle with the vampire's own weapon.

That... must be very rare, no?  Maybe I'm reading it wrong.  A *human* has to wound/kill a *vampire* with the vampire's own weapon?  This lineage would be rare, methinks.

Quote
In the modern nights, the Lelwani have learned how to control their savage nature in social situations, but only even get in social situations when they absolutely must.

I like tying this specifically to a mechanic.  In the weaknesses below you mention Frenzy. Maybe also throw in a penalty to social interactions because of the powerful urge to solve problems by hitting or cutting them.

Quote
Strenghts: physical prowess (greater physical stats than any other clan lineage), proficiency with blades

As warriors, philosophically speaking, what do they see as the most important aspect of combat?  Speed, Strength or Toughness?  Do they try to seek a balance of all three? (Unable to raise a physical stat/power more than one higher than the others?)

Quote
Weaknesses: instantly killed by sunlight, bright artificial light does more damage than to any other clan, depictions of the sun slightly disturb a Lelwani, frenzy checks higher.

Hm... Insta killed by sunlight... so what happens if a beam of sunlight falls across their fore arm?  They just lose that arm on down to the hand?  It might be more effective to have them take more damage from sunlight, but realistically this flaw doesn't come up *that* much in games.  They are already vampires and the sun will destroy them so that explains the curse, it doesn't *have* to be extra strong for them.  I'd stick with social penalties and higher Control checks.

Quote
Organisation: Lelwani resemble a pack of beasts or a group of pirahnas in the sense that there is the leader who asserts his superiority by branding members of his pack (like the alpha pirahna bites the lips of other pirahnas)
They can be found inticing riot and chaos, being mercenaries, hitmen, paid soldiers etc. The other clans see them as coarse savages, but still fear they would have to battle them.

Cool.

What if a Lelwani was a bit odd or crazy and decided for shits n giggles to turn a really nerdy IT server manager into a Lelwani (somehow the girl got lucky, tripped and wounded the Lelwani in their fight with her own weapon).  How would game mechanics force her to prioritize physical stats and powers beyond higher Control (Frenzy) checks and penalties to social rolls?  How would the character be forced into the lineage stereotypes you describe above?  In what ways could she break those stereotypes?  What kind of backlash might she suffer at the hands of the rest of the lineage?

Quote
Disciplines: Fortitude, Potence, Presence

Why Presence instead of Celerity?


Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 09, 2015, 03:14:56 PM
I did intend them to be rare, because they are really savage and powerful, especially in a pack, so if they were more common, they would cause TOO much chaos in the entire world, impose tyranny and kill humans like ducks.
But I guess I could divise a way for them to still be rare, without the slightly weird way of embracing. Maybe they organise tournaments amongst themselves and the weakest one in every tournament is killed? Or maybe when an aspiring Lelwani wants to overthrow the leader of his pack, he must do so by killing him?

Ah yes, the penalty to social interaction, like, they can't (or can, but only on weaker targets or with great difficulty) use Seduction or Persuasion, but have a bonus to Intimidation?

Or maybe, make a new Lelwani player select a physical stat that would be their primary, so the other two can't be raised above a certain point?
Also, that would affect their disciplines, if they chose speed, they could get Celerity? (I really didn't want Celerity along with Potence and Fortitude, I think that would be overpowered)

Interesting question with the IT manager :) Poor girl :P
Well, the knowledges one had as a human would remain in her vampiric state, but she would find it very difficult to sit and look at numbers when all she wants to do is fight and shed blood. Sure, she could learn how to control herself over the years, but at first she would just smash the computer because she got bored after 10 minutes :D
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on February 09, 2015, 05:01:47 PM
I did intend them to be rare, because they are really savage and powerful, especially in a pack, so if they were more common, they would cause TOO much chaos in the entire world, impose tyranny and kill humans like ducks.
But I guess I could divise a way for them to still be rare, without the slightly weird way of embracing. Maybe they organise tournaments amongst themselves and the weakest one in every tournament is killed? Or maybe when an aspiring Lelwani wants to overthrow the leader of his pack, he must do so by killing him?

Those sound like interesting alternatives to show off their savageness.

Quote
Ah yes, the penalty to social interaction, like, they can't (or can, but only on weaker targets or with great difficulty) use Seduction or Persuasion, but have a bonus to Intimidation?

Yeah, I was thinking like a blanket +2 diff on all Social rolls (in WoD that'd be Charisma/Manipulation/Appearance rolls), as the character's instincts push them to solve problems with force or they get frustrated and angry, which could lead to a Control (Frenzy) check.  But yeah you could also give a bump to Intim.  However, instead of giving them Intim (let the player choose their own stats, if they want to be intimidating), I have another idea.  I would not make this true across all the vampire lineages, just the Lelwani.  Maybe you could give them a new stat.  I am basically thinking a corollary to Rage as it is in Werewolf: the Apocalypse. To quote the website WoD Gotham (http://wiki.wodgotham.com/index.php?title=Rage (http://wiki.wodgotham.com/index.php?title=Rage)):

"Rage is a primal drive that urges characters, no matter the auspice, to rend, kill, destroy other creatures and turn them into piles of meat. It's the drive to see every other living thing in the world as prey and targets for attack. It's not only Garou arrogance to see themselves as Gaia's Chosen, but at the very core and primal level, their beasts see everything else as theirs to dominate, hunt, and kill.

Watch a classic werewolf movie and you'll see a tormented soul committing atrocities...rending neighbors, friends, family to bits indiscriminately. They may revel in it or may be horrified by their urges. They may warn people to stay away in the vain attempt to spare a few from his talons and fangs. That's the source of the inspiration for Rage.

Most humans will feel uneasy around Garou and avoid them. Garou awaken an instinct in humans to flee as prey flees the approach of a predator. When you watch a wild life show and see a pack of wolves stalk a herd of deer. The deer become alert, sensing the predator in their midst, and become nervous. The nervousness travels over the entire herd and as the predator moves past them the deer will give the wolf a wide berth until it has moved out of range of a strike. That is the effect of the Curse."

A trait that acted in the same way (made humans uneasy around them would be great and could give an even higher penalty to interactions with humans.  Humans would sense something primal and predatory about the character.  Still it would have to be developed more... what rolls would use the Rage stat?  What would make it increase and decrease?  Still, I think it's worth thinking about.

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Or maybe, make a new Lelwani player select a physical stat that would be their primary, so the other two can't be raised above a certain point?
Also, that would affect their disciplines, if they chose speed, they could get Celerity?

Let's say physical stats are Strength, Dexterity and Stamina.  Let's say your stats are Str 3, Dex 2, Stam 2.  You couldn't raise your Str to 4, until BOTH Dex and Stam were at 3.  You only have a difference of 1 between the highest and lowest physical stat.  That way it would force a balanced approach and fighters couldn't specialize.

You could do the same thing with the supernatural powers.  You might have Potence at 1, but you can't raise it to 2 until you've purchased the first dot of Celerity AND Fortitude.

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(I really didn't want Celerity along with Potence and Fortitude, I think that would be overpowered)

In the modern nights setting I'm putting together, each of the lineages will be associated with specific powers but (like WoD) all physical powers will be available to all lineages.  Also note that there are not three but four physical disciplines shared by the lineages.  Supernatural speed, strength, toughness and beauty.  There will be no version of the Appearance stat, you can decide how beautiful (or ugly) your character is. However, supernatural beauty is different regular mortal beauty and overlaps a bit with the WoD power of Presence (which will be called Awe in my game).

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Interesting question with the IT manager :) Poor girl :P
Well, the knowledges one had as a human would remain in her vampiric state, but she would find it very difficult to sit and look at numbers when all she wants to do is fight and shed blood. Sure, she could learn how to control herself over the years, but at first she would just smash the computer because she got bored after 10 minutes :D

Wow... in that case I might even say that she should get the difficulty penalty not just on Social rolls, but also Mental rolls!  Her anger and directness prevent her from sitting still in a chair typing out code or fixing bugs.

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 09, 2015, 05:38:02 PM
Yes, you are very helpful, Nigama, because you're thinking in terms of mechanics, while I'm just using storytelling logic- the two need each other for a complete result.

I like the concept of Rage, it would fit the Lelwani, but I would suggest that in that case, each lineage gets SOME new stat or skill or whatever (just so it doesn't appear that somebody was given more attention during game creation) for example, one of my other ideas for a lineage could get Luck (I'll type that idea after we've rounded up the Lelwani, it would get confusing otherwise) which would give them a (small) bonus to (certain) rolls OR function like an "x times per day night" ability (ie: 3 times per night a vampire with Luck could override a DC to not require a roll/add up the Luck modifier to the roll (up to a certain DC number, depending on how many points he/she has in Luck; that would help them cast a spell, pick a lock, dodge an attack etc.))


The way I imagined Lelwani, I already mentioned even depictions of sun would disturb them. Imagine if you showed them a statue of Ra! Even if they didn't know who Ra was, they would subconsciously know. So that could be one of the things that increase their Rage, while depictions of moon would decrease it (maybe they wear moon amulets or have tattoos of the moon, or adorn wherever they stay for the time being with figurines or pictures of moon) sure, they would get more prone to Rage the hungrier they get, or if they were unarmed, if it was long since they had a good fight etc.

I mean, if somebody is savage, they basically have no patience, that's why I think even a genius programmer would lose patience (but not knowledge and skill) after they became a Lelwani. Maybe if, while she was human, she was VERY patient and mild, it would be less of a problem, but I'd say all Lelwani get a piece of barbaric curse upon their creation.
(I kinda like the approach of first creating a human character with history and skills- I use that approach for my VtM game: for example, if a character was very charismatic, he/she could start with an extra dot in charisma, I mean, those things don't just go away once he/she is embraced. Even the Nosferatu COULD be charismatic- a charismatic Nos with a Mask of Thousand Faces or over the phone could get his desired result)

So, to not cripple the poor Lelwani programmer completely, let's say the Lelwani curse requires an occasional Self Control roll when doing Social and/or Mental actions (with DCs varying upon the action and PCs human character) and maybe if it's an action the PC as a human loved and was good at, the DC would be lower, required less frequently or non-existant.
So, in this case, say the Lelwani programmer was programming something. She's good at programming, but now she's rough with the keyboard, swearing a lot etc. Since it's an action she loves and is proficient at, it would only require her a Self Control roll if she was doing it for WAY too long at a time or if she encountered a particularly persistant code error (did I even use the proper term, I'm not a programmer)
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on February 10, 2015, 02:45:23 AM
I like the concept of Rage, it would fit the Lelwani, but I would suggest that in that case, each lineage gets SOME new stat or skill or whatever (just so it doesn't appear that somebody was given more attention during game creation) for example, one of my other ideas for a lineage could get Luck (I'll type that idea after we've rounded up the Lelwani, it would get confusing otherwise) which would give them a (small) bonus to (certain) rolls OR function like an "x times per day night" ability (ie: 3 times per night a vampire with Luck could override a DC to not require a roll/add up the Luck modifier to the roll (up to a certain DC number, depending on how many points he/she has in Luck; that would help them cast a spell, pick a lock, dodge an attack etc.))

Yeah... it could certainly be *doable* to give each lineage their own special trait, but then again, it might feel forced, too.  Sure, we could create a luck trait for one of the lineages, but then what about the other 6 or 7 lineages?  Eventually that trait is gonna feel awkward and out of place or just plain forced.  I honestly have no problem only giving it to one lineage.  It should have a benefit but also an equal drawback.  We've figured out the drawback (if a human's willpower is lower than the player's rage (Savagery?) they will instinctively feel unease and flee the player).  That could further represented by a +1 diff on Social roles with humans whose willpower is lower than the player's savagery.  The only thing would be to give it some positive to balance it out, since you would already be giving the Lelwani a flaw (see below).


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The way I imagined Lelwani, I already mentioned even depictions of sun would disturb them. Imagine if you showed them a statue of Ra! Even if they didn't know who Ra was, they would subconsciously know. So that could be one of the things that increase their Rage, while depictions of moon would decrease it (maybe they wear moon amulets or have tattoos of the moon, or adorn wherever they stay for the time being with figurines or pictures of moon) sure, they would get more prone to Rage the hungrier they get, or if they were unarmed, if it was long since they had a good fight etc.

Just want to bring up that moonlight is really just a reflection of sunlight.  So under the logic above, Lelwani might not be able to go outside on a full moon. (heh.. it's like a reverse werewolf)  EDIT: Or only able to go outside on a new moon!  That'd be a serious flaw.

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I mean, if somebody is savage, they basically have no patience, that's why I think even a genius programmer would lose patience (but not knowledge and skill) after they became a Lelwani. Maybe if, while she was human, she was VERY patient and mild, it would be less of a problem, but I'd say all Lelwani get a piece of barbaric curse upon their creation.
(I kinda like the approach of first creating a human character with history and skills- I use that approach for my VtM game: for example, if a character was very charismatic, he/she could start with an extra dot in charisma, I mean, those things don't just go away once he/she is embraced. Even the Nosferatu COULD be charismatic- a charismatic Nos with a Mask of Thousand Faces or over the phone could get his desired result)

So, to not cripple the poor Lelwani programmer completely, let's say the Lelwani curse requires an occasional Self Control roll when doing Social and/or Mental actions (with DCs varying upon the action and PCs human character) and maybe if it's an action the PC as a human loved and was good at, the DC would be lower, required less frequently or non-existant.
So, in this case, say the Lelwani programmer was programming something. She's good at programming, but now she's rough with the keyboard, swearing a lot etc. Since it's an action she loves and is proficient at, it would only require her a Self Control roll if she was doing it for WAY too long at a time or if she encountered a particularly persistant code error (did I even use the proper term, I'm not a programmer)

Hmm... so let's say instead of a +2 diff flaw to Social and Mental rolls, it's just a +1.  That way if the character is skilled, they'll still be able to do their job, but their job will become one degree harder (rolling their dice pool at diff 7 vs diff 6).  Also, you could work in the Control check by saying, if they try something (mental or social) AND FAIL that roll, they then have to succeed in a Control roll or they lose control and attack anyone/thing around them (smashing computer screens, attacking coworkers).  A failure on a physical roll would not do anything, since they were already trying to rip things to pieces, shred them or at least exert themselves physically.


Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 10, 2015, 07:32:29 AM
I chuckled at reverse werewolf :-) but since the goddess Lelwani WAS able to understand the secret of the moon and perform the correct ritual with it, I'd say the moon is altogether safe for them (it would kinda ruin the player's experience if other players were going out and the ST kept bugging them with "but it's not a new moon, you must remain inside"- and there ARE asshole STs- my VtM ST would make me roll Control with my Malk every turn so it would be just a matter of time when I'd fail- imagine how he would be towards a Lelwani.

Come to think of it, you are right, HAVING to give every lineage a unique trait might feel forced, but it's a nice idea to keep in mind if a lineage feels unfinished.

I just remembered something: what if a new Lelwani had to choose the most favourite and the least favourite Mental skill? For example, Computers is the most favourite: it requires no rolls. Research is the least favourite: it has upped diff (bad example, since today we do research via computer, but you get my point)
But also making them roll Self Control only if they fail a Mental action is a great idea- perhaps the best yet.

Regarding Social: maybe they can't converse with easily scared humans, but the werewolves instinctively won't attack them first?
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on February 10, 2015, 05:46:27 PM
I don't think giving each lineage a unique modifier of some kind would impose that much more difficulty on the players. In Dungeons and Dragons, you have a crap-ton of class restrictions, and feats only certain classes or races can take, and players manage those. As long as you don't have too many lineages to begin with, it should be fine.

I think a "reverse werewolf" would be a Lupus-breed - a wolf who turns into a man every full moon!
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on February 10, 2015, 07:09:27 PM
I don't think giving each lineage a unique modifier of some kind would impose that much more difficulty on the players. In Dungeons and Dragons, you have a crap-ton of class restrictions, and feats only certain classes or races can take, and players manage those. As long as you don't have too many lineages to begin with, it should be fine.

The problem wasn't so much that the players couldn't handle it, it was that creating it in the first place might feel forced.  The stat for the Lelwani came up naturally, inspired by their concept.  So say I go to a different lineage and that lineage doesn't really suggest an obvious special trait.  Are we to make up something just for the sake of having it?  Why create a special trait if it's not inspired by the concept and necessary to portray that concept in game play?  My only concern is that it's balanced.  It shouldn't be an auto "I win" nor should it be something crippling or detrimental.

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I think a "reverse werewolf" would be a Lupus-breed - a wolf who turns into a man every full moon!

I was specifically speaking about the reverse in moon phase.  Werewolves traditionally go wild and lose control on full moons.  The Lelwani would have to stay inside on full moons cuz they'd insta-die from the moonlight.  New Moons would be their thing, instead.  In that case, the lineage would have gone down the darkness road and turned into the Lasombra!  And Valeera was right to note that the mythology includes learning the secrets of the moon, so it wouldn't really work for the concept anyway, but was just a natural extrapolation of the idea that the sun hurts them so much that even a picture or symbol or word hurts them.  Moonlight is just sunlight reflected, after all.

Also, maybe the opposite of a Werewolf is a Werehuman?  Hehehe... or as D&D called it a Wolfwere (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wolfwere)?  Lupus are definitely it in the WoD, but I have seen MANY a W:tF fanboy rage against the idea of playing a Lupus.

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Ryot on February 11, 2015, 01:52:00 PM
Aren't there some ideas from VtM that are just to good to toss away, but would be copyrighted? such as the Nosferatu concept, the clan that lives hidden in the sewers because of their appearance and became masters of information, I think that concept is just to awesome to toss aside, but would including such a bloodline in a totally unrelated vampire myth system a copyright violation?
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on February 11, 2015, 02:10:37 PM
Aren't there some ideas from VtM that are just to good to toss away, but would be copyrighted? such as the Nosferatu concept, the clan that lives hidden in the sewers because of their appearance and became masters of information, I think that concept is just to awesome to toss aside, but would including such a bloodline in a totally unrelated vampire myth system a copyright violation?

Creating a lineage part of whose curse includes being forced to be ugly certainly can be done.  You could even give them advantages to stealth and computers because they have to rely on those things in order to interact with the world.  However, if you call them Clan Nosferatu, give them a similar backstory to Absimiliard's creation story, include a group that's like them but even more hardcore that hunts and kills them, and has a power exactly the same as Obfuscate (clouding mens' minds so they don't see you, or appearing as a different person) I think you'd be in danger because those concepts ARE theirs.  However, instead of Obfuscate you could give them actual Invisibility or shadow manipulation so they can hide better in darkness.  CCP doesn't own those ideas and if they were stupid enough to sue you over it, all they'd be paying is your court costs.

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 11, 2015, 03:21:04 PM
One of my other ideas actually DOES include the lineage to be really really ugly (though not for the same reason or in the same way as the Nosferatu, so I don't think anybody could say we violated any copyright) I mean, who owns mythology and old superstitions? Nobody.

Hey, I have an idea. I think it would be good (if you guys agree, of course) if we could exchange Facebook info, so any detailed mechanic ideas could go through there, because I'm online there basically all the time, and it would go faster (all the FB messages go directly to my phone) and also so we don't broaden up this thread TOO much, so the lineage ideas could still be easily found. Of course, we would post the finished lineage mechanic on here, so everybody could see it, but just so we don't clog up this thread with trial-and-error posts.

If anybody's up for it, PM me and I'll give you a link to my facebook profile.



On to the fun stuff!

The abovementioned other idea:

In Slavic mythology (yes, I just HAVE to do it because I'm Serbian :P) vampires (and werewolves, various types of fairies, screamers (that are erroneusly identified by Wiki as types of vampires) ghosts...) are a big part of the superstition. Also, the first documented cases of "vampirism" happened in Croatia and Serbia, and the word "vampir" is also from here.
It would be a great shame if I didn't at least put it up for consideration.

There isn't a specific creation myth for vampires with us Slavs, I must say that. Certain parts of the superstition resemble what other mythologies already had with "bloodsucking demons".

Basically, a vampire with Slavs is a being that rises from the grave. It isn't Embraced but a human with predispositions is sometimes born or certain things happen to them that may make them rise as vampires after they die.
Simplified, a vampire is someone who had some unfinished business or died while holding a grudge, so he comes back to haunt his neighbours and family, sometimes he would just engage in poltergeist activity, and sometimes he would bring downright mysery, kill cattle and people etc. (in Serbia, every mean-spirited supernatural being is scaring cattle, that seems to be their main goal :D)

Redheads with blue eyes were believed to become vampires, if a cat or a dog jumped over a grave, if somebody died by suicide or if somebody died insane etc.

Also,(male) vampires could reproduce and so became the concept of half-vampires, known as dhampyrs/dampirs, who were the only ones (besides twins born on a Saturday, and cattle) who could see a vampire, since they were normally invisible or barely visible, and would fall apart in goo when killed. Garlic harmed them, they couldn't cross over running water, a shot to the head killed them, or a stake through their heart, head or stomach (depending on which Slavic country you ask) Stake in question had to be hawthorne (in Serbia, I'm not sure about other countries, maybe it was an oak in Russia) and also, varying from country to country, vampires were either bloated and dark/purple, or pretty similar to the human when he was alive.
Common methods of driving vampires away was throwing grains on the roof of your house, telling them to "come tomorrow, and I will give you some salt" or "come and catch some fish and then return to me" and also they couldn't step on consecrated ground or enter somebody's house without being invited (though after you first invite them, they could come and go as they please)

I was thinking of stripping away some of these superstitions (I mean, twins born on a Saturday? Grains on house-roofs?) and keeping only what wouldn't sound completely ridiculous, and maybe connect them to the actual mythology (which would prove kinda difficult as Slavic gods were rather cyclic and almost all of them would be good in summer and bad in winter)
I did find the idea of them being bloated and dark from the blood to be good, so they would be hideous, they would have stealth (invisible to almost everybody) and I'd rather like to keep the "haunting" aspect. That's why I was thinking they should have Luck as a feat/stat, my idea was that they suck the luck out of the area that they haunt that was important to them while they were alive, and then that luck is theirs. 

If you'd like me to devise a more "down-to-the-point" idea as with the Lelwani, let me know, but for now I just wanted to see if you find this type of vampires to be even remotely interesting.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on February 11, 2015, 11:49:12 PM
... has a power exactly the same as Obfuscate (clouding mens' minds so they don't see you, or appearing as a different person) I think you'd be in danger because those concepts ARE theirs.  However, instead of Obfuscate you could give them actual Invisibility or shadow manipulation so they can hide better in darkness.
Fixed^

Also, in post-Christianized Slavic lore, didn't vampires have to be buried in unconsecrated ground, and/or not be buried under a crossroads? I.e., not buried under the sign of the Christian cross.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on February 12, 2015, 12:58:32 AM
... has a power exactly the same as Obfuscate (clouding mens' minds so they don't see you, or appearing as a different person) I think you'd be in danger because those concepts ARE theirs.  However, instead of Obfuscate you could give them actual Invisibility or shadow manipulation so they can hide better in darkness.
Fixed^

Derp.  Thanks.  Was reading the fan site about Abyssal Mysticism today, must've wormed its way into my brain and taken over Obfuscate.  Fixed in the original as well.

Valeera - I'm still mulling it over, but I like the idea of actually doing a vampire lineage from the area and culture where vampire lore originates.  It's funny that so many vampires from different lores rarely keep the classic weaknesses.  That itself would be pretty cool to see and I always liked Max from Lost Boys asking permission before he enters the house. Very easy thing to do and nothing out of place asking permission to come in, people would rarely suspect a thing.  Not being able to cross running water might be tough to RP out, though, and garlic would probably be nonexistent as a threat unless you came upon some really dumb hunters (since most other lineages wouldn't have those classic weaknesses, hunters would largely think they didn't work).

Also, the traditional lore kindof leaves them without a lineage founder.  Hrm....   

As for Facebook, I can't say I get on it much.  I do have two accounts, one for my family and friends and one for gaming, but I rarely get on it. 

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 12, 2015, 09:43:14 AM
I believe we would have to drop the not being able to cross running water or maybe make them have to carry a bit of their native soil with them when they do (that entire Tzimisce thing with native soil is also from these areas) or make them only able to cross it on a horse. Speaking of, I believe I've found a mythical being that could be the lineage founder (it's kinda like the most powerful demon on the Balkans, as old as the Iron Age, split into two saints in Christianity)
Will type it out in detail when I get to my computer.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on February 12, 2015, 09:46:16 PM
This demon's name wouldn't happened to be "Kupala", would it?
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 13, 2015, 12:18:03 AM
No. In actual mythology (not the WoD one) Kupala is the goddess of water, herbs, sex and Midsummer. She was later "transformed" into John The Baptist (as Kupala means "she bathed" and kupati- to bathe) she was a good entity.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on February 13, 2015, 02:20:29 AM
I believe we would have to drop the not being able to cross running water or maybe make them have to carry a bit of their native soil with them when they do (that entire Tzimisce thing with native soil is also from these areas) or make them only able to cross it on a horse. Speaking of, I believe I've found a mythical being that could be the lineage founder (it's kinda like the most powerful demon on the Balkans, as old as the Iron Age, split into two saints in Christianity)
Will type it out in detail when I get to my computer.

Since you didn't post today, I'm gonna go ahead and guess... is it Veles?  Or Ala?

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on February 13, 2015, 05:29:37 AM
Kup-Ala! It's perfect!
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 13, 2015, 09:32:20 AM
You're not too far off the mark with Veles, regarding domain, but it's not him. Ala is just a malevolent type of dragon (ala means glutton)

Ok, I'll have to type it out from my phone.

In Paleo-Balkan mythology, there is a motif of an underworld god/ great hero called Thracian Horseman. He would keep the balance between the world of the living and the world of the dead, release slaves, and kill Ala/Azdajas with a spear (sounds like a Christian saint, anybody?)

But Slavs believed in their own, much scarier version of this myth: Todor and his nine brothers (Todorlings), the white-clad faceless horsemen who would ride through the night and trample or gut  anybody who they found alone. They could also bring illness or madness, and one could know they're coming by hearing horse-shoes and rattling of chains (remains of the Thracian horseman, who freed slaves from chains)

After Christianisation, it is said that it was in fact St. Theodor, protector of horses and cattle and they would celebrate his night sometime in July, I think, yeda, yeda.

So! My mythology for this. Ok, so there's Todor. He also has 9 brothers. What if he was in fact the "Caine" of this lineage, his 9 brothers are the Antediluvians/Methuselahs and they go around and choose individuals by releasing them of slavery? What damn slavery, you might ask. To me, biggest slaves are madmen. And since vampiric mythology does mention madmen rising as vampires, there we go.

As for how Todor became a vampire: he was the Thracian Horseman, guardian of the underworld. He started accumulating arcane knowledge of magic he would encounter and became a potent mage over the centuries. He somewhere read/heard that drinking the blood of an Ala/Azdaja that he'd kill would enhance his power. His bosses in the underworld weren't very pleased when he gained enough power to not only free, but enslave, feed on life essence, cause madness and cast curses so they tried to destroy him, but he was pretty much death, he must exist so they settled for limiting his activity to one week in a year and protecting innocent people from him (he can't harm children)

Since then, Todor and Todorlings arise and ride once a year, choosing their minions among the mad, the vicious, the outcast or even cause madness in healthy people so they could claim them after they die.
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Nigama on February 13, 2015, 06:31:18 PM
Cool idea. It definitely helps to give an idea to where vampirism could have started, by choosing the mad/crazy people and "setting them free."  But it doesn't really support the ugliness at all. Did Todor have any weaknesses that were similar to classic vampiric weaknesses?

Why did the classic vampires have the weaknesses they had?  Why did they have to ask permission before coming in?  Why did folk magic of that area think it was good to use garlic to ward off vampires?  I think I get the wooden stake through the heart, since the wood is symbol of life.  I get holy water and crosses (holy used against unholy). There's a clear connection between classic vampirism and Christianity, so how does the Christianity play a role? 

Oh man, look at this!  It's perfect! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_vampire_traits_in_folklore_and_fiction (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_vampire_traits_in_folklore_and_fiction)

So first classic (European folklore) appearance would be:
Ruddy or dark skin color, always having fangs, sometimes having a reflection, sometimes having a shadow, beauty level varies from bloated corpse to lifelike.

Weaknesses would be:
Ash, Hawthorne, or Oak Stake through heart to kill, nocturnal (killed by sunlight), able to be decapitated, burned to death and drowned, silver does nothing, garlic and holy symbols do, they have no problem to running water, no need for an invitation into the home, put do have arithmomania (they count stuff obsessively).

They have the standard powers, no big surprises there.

They can have kids! Reproduce through a bite that leads to death. Supposedly inhabited by demons!

Definitely seems like there is an awesome lineage in there somewhere, and boy do they sound evil and crazy!

I can't seem to find much information on the Thracian Horseman and all of it seems to be positive.  He even has a facebook page dedicated to him and his statues.  Didn't read anything dark or negative about him and couldn't find anything specifically on Todor or the Todorlings.

Nigama
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 13, 2015, 07:03:20 PM
You are right, Nigama, Thracian horseman is a good guy! There are some clues about Hercul, Apollo and even Serbian Prince Marko fitting the Thracian Horseman archetype (even though Prince Marko was in fact a drunkard and cowardly Ottoman vassal. Argh. He somehow got to be the main hero in Serbian epic poems, while poor Vuk Brankovic, the only one who refused to serve the Turks, was portrayed as a traitor. Why and how is beyond me.)

Honestly, Slavic (vampire) superstitions mostly sound illogical and even silly to me. We are a superstitious folk, and roots of the superstitions are often vague. But I believe I have the answers to some of your questions (these are my deductions based on stories I've read/heard, but if something sounds fishy to you, point it out and I will double-check with my mythology-savvy boyfriend)

As for permission: Slavs honoured and respected the god who was a protector of travellers/wanderers. Maybe you've heard that Slavs are famous for their hospitality? The belief goes that this god (EDIT: His name was Radgost, which literally means "a welcome guest") would disguise himself as a poor traveller and choose a random house. He'd then ask the hosts for dinner and to spend the night. If they refused or if they've treated him poorly, he'd curse them, and if they were good hosts, he'd bless them and the family would thrive. Thus Slavs would accept any wanderer that would knock on their door, fearing that it might be the god in disguise.
So I presume a vampire, as an unholy creature, couldn't enter a home uninvited (he could fear the aforementioned god blessed it) so he'd have to have the home-owner's consent (and thus protection, he'd basically be counted equal to the family if he was a welcome guest- Radgost :-) )

As for garlic, I believe it's pure logic. Garlic is a powerful antibiotic, thus probably considered a holy (healing) veggie. But, by that logic, the flower perunika (Perun's plant) would also be powerful, as it was believed to grow from thunderstruck soil (Perun, god of thunder, was our prime deity)

I've never heard of ash being harmful to vampires :O do you know why is that perhaps?
Arithmomania is also pretty ridiculous, I believe the folk was just trying to invent a difficult/time-consuming task for somebody to do, and then said it protects them from vampires! Pffft! And they would throw grains on their rooftop so the vampire would have to do parkour to count it -.-

I've only found anything about Todor in Serbian, sadly. And also, much Wiki info about Slavic mythology is either wrong or not clear enough, like I've said, they erroneously identify screamers as vampires (screamers were ghosts of babies who died before being blessed/baptised and they would wander and cry in forests)
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Rick Gentle on February 14, 2015, 01:11:54 AM
The myth of the traveling god is a pretty common one. In Norse mythology, Odin supposedly did the same thing, and it even comes up in Native American myths (though usually all the hospitable hosts got was tricks played on them by Coyote or Iktomi the Spider-Man, and lots of pregnant daughters after those two left). The Greek gods did some traveling, though I don't think they had a formal system of reward/punishment for those they visited. Usually it was just about the sex.
Hospitality was an extremely important concept in ancient cultures, because if you didn't have somewhere to spend the night, and a warm meal to go with it, a traveler would probably die before they ever got to their destination. The Tzimisce still have a bunch of rules that govern hospitality and the treatment of guests; I'm guessing your new lineage would invent some similar rules. In relation to your lineage, perhaps these stories are the source of this vampiric lineage, or the stories came about because of this vampiric lineage spreading across the globe (though the Native Americans in the New World are a bit of a stretch).
Title: Re: The Origin Project (Free Vampire IP)
Post by: Valeera on February 14, 2015, 10:14:49 AM
Indeed. And Tzimisce ARE one of my favourite clans! :) Along with Malkavians, and this Slavic mythology seems to be working for me, I'll have Carpathian meanies and madmen in one lineage xD

I think Dominate is a given for this lineage :) And Obfuscate, since the mythology says they are invisible.
One question, though, and please do not get me wrong, I'm not trying to be a smartass or disrespectful, I'm simply still rather inexperienced in the PnP VtM, but do you think Auspex is absolutely necessary as a Discipline (in the form and stretch it exists in WoD) or could we make it a level of some other Discipline; or an ability?
Our ST made it normal that all vampires have heightened senses (1st dot) and he'd either give us infrared goggles or binoculars so we'd know when we see a supernatural creature (2nd dot) and even before I had my 3rd dot, he would roll a percentage and if it came up above a certain number, he'd give me a random piece of information about an object I'd encounter.

So what I was thinking is keep some aspects of Auspex, but mix them with some spells into a new discipline, something like psychic magic.

They could have Todor omnipresent ("I am Death, I am everywhere, I am always") even if he cannot appear physically or act unless it's his week; in the area that is their domain, and their magic could be stronger in that area (but if somebody wanted to play this lineage in NY, for example, this could make them weaker) but they could communicate with him (something like the Madness Network) from anywhere, and they could be something like Reapers for him, he'd require a certain number of deeds done for him so they could advance in power.

As for physical appearance, Nigama, I forgot to reply to that: Todor was said to either have no face/his face is a void (headless horseman anybody?) or to have....and this part is WEIRD, a horse's BEHIND for a face. I must be interpreting this wrong!
But if he has "no face" we could say he has no face OF HIS OWN, making him able to disguise himself. Also, him and his horse both have a limp :)

What could make this lineage more flexible in terms of alignment (I would like to make them able to have a high Humanity/Morality score, because game mechanics :)) is that when they act as Reapers, it's not pure violence and madness. They could punish criminals, for example. Point is, Todor requires them to kill. They could still have honour and be justicars. Or since they can CAUSE disease, how about if they could curb it/understand it/cure it?

So basically, I want to make this lineage flexible enough that a player playing them could choose to be a monstrous Tzimisce-like vampire, or a paladin-like vampire, or a cleric-type, advisor-type... Of course, I still have to balance all of this out, so they're not Supermen of vampires, but I was toying with this idea.