White Wolf, Inc., is an American gaming company, begun in 1991 with the merging of Lion Rampant (creators of Ars Magica
) and White Wolf Magazine
. It publishes a line of several different but overlapping urban gothic role-playing games, set in a "World of Darkness." These games take place in the modern world, but with supernatural elements. Unless by explicit Storyteller explanation, all things in the modern world remain the same. Places, technologies, laws, medicine, police procedures etc. will be as they are in the normal world. However, the "gothic" aspect means that the world is an unpleasant place indeed. Normal humans see everything like they normally would, but the supernaturals see a dark underlying evil which gives the game its gothic feel. In the World of Darkness, vampires, werewolves, mummies, mages, changelings, wraiths, and other creatures of the night exist and fight with and alongside each other while remaining hidden from normal humans.
The company also publishes the high fantasy Exalted
and the modern mythic Scion
. During Third Edition Dungeons & Dragons
, they put out d20 system material under their Sword & Sorcery
imprint, including such titles as the gothic horror campaign setting Ravenloft
and Monte Cook's Arcana Unearthed
series. They also had a division, Black Dog Game Factory
, that published books that deal with mature and adult themes, including several volumes from the Old World of Darkness line and the parody RPG HoL
A short lived gameworld
, comprised of Future Imperfect
, but renamed due to copyright reasons
), Super Hero
and Pulp game Adventure!
, was eventually dropped due to low sales. D20 versions of the three games were later released.
To complement the Old World of Darkness
game lines, there is a LARP system dubbed Mind's Eye Theatre. Many grassroots gaming groups have sprung up to play games based on this system.
There have also been several series of novels based on the Old World of Darkness
, along with a few for Exalted
White Wolf has a mixed record in the collectible card game market with Arcadia
, and Vampire: The Eternal Struggle
, perhaps the most successful of the bunch, was originally published by Wizards of the Coast
in 1994 but was abandoned just two years later after a revamped base set and name change (V:TES
) and three expansions. White Wolf acquired the rights to the game in 2000, despite no new material having been produced for the game in over 4 years. Since then, V:TES
has released several expansions, and was for a long time the only official source for material for the Old World of Darkness
Video games such as Vampire: The Masquerade – Redemption
and Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines
are based on White Wolf's role-playing property, Vampire: The Masquerade
. There are also several Hunter The Reckoning
video games. A Werewolf: The Apocalypse
video game was also planned but abandoned during development.
In 2003, the company announced the "Time of Judgment," which brought an end to their series of Old World of Darkness
gamelines. They then launched a Spiritual Successor
setting, putting out games set in a New World of Darkness
, independent of the original. This move concerned many fans who had become used to the existing setting.
In 2006, White Wolf was acquired by CCP hf, the creators and publishers of EVE Online
. In 2007 they released a D20 adaptation of the World of Darkness
series called Monte Cook's World of Darkness
. A The World of Darkness
MMO was announced, and languished in Development Hell
until it was canceled in 2014.
In 2011, White Wolf announced a 20th anniversary edition of Vampire: The Masquerade
, and started making Old World of Darkness
gamebooks available via print on demand. At that year's Gen Con, they announced they would now be releasing new books for both old and new Worlds of Darkness with the Onyx Path
imprint. In late 2011 they began development of the 20th anniversary edition of Werewolf: The Apocalypse
In 2012, Rich Thomas, White Wolf's Creative Director, announced he'd created a new company, Onyx Path Publishing, which had licensed the old World of Darkness, the new World of Darkness, and Exalted from WW/CCP, bought Scion
and Trinity Universe
from them outright, and was planning to publish their own games.