WMG / Vampire: The Masquerade

Favored disciplines and clan weaknesses aren't hereditary - they're cultural.

Caitiffs are vampires who don't know what clan they belong to. They don't get favored disciplines or a clan weakness (their weakness is the social disadvantage of being clanless). The thing is, a caitiff has to belong to a clan by definition. They're ultimately descended from some bloodline or another, they just don't know which. Thus favored disciplines and clan weaknesses aren't hereditary - they're cultural. By the rules, if a vampire doesn't know his sire was a Giovanni, his bites don't hurt like his sire's do, and a Lasombra would have a reflection.
  • What about Caitiff who know who their sires were and who hung out with their sires and learned all the jazz, but were still Caitiff? This can and does happen. It's not always immediately apparent, though, especially with Clans like the Brujah or Toreador who have no easy-to-determine weakness and a fairly common Discipline suite.
  • It should be noted that some kindred that actually have been successfully embraced into a clan (mostly anarchs) declare themselves caitiff primarily because they see the stregths of not being tied to a clan rather than the weaknesses, even though they still have the weakness of their clan, in contrast to those embraced as caitiff (to elaborate, a human embraced by a nosferatu but ending up a caitiff due to the embrace will still look normal, whereas a nosferatu embraced normally declaring itself caitiff will still look like a walking hemmoroid). In short, there are true caitiff, kindred who truly lack the clan flaws and disciplines, and kindred who simply declared themselves caitiff or don't know their clan. And they are generally easy to tell apart, especially when that fancy-dressed hungry caitiff simply can't bring himself to feed on that hobo across the street despite how much he wants to and needs to.
    • In general, Caitiff are all kindred who don't formally belong to a clan one way or another, whether by abandonment or defect. Subtly different mechanics count for vampires whose blood is too thin to carry over clan traits, and those who simply aren't aware of their clan. The main source of confusion is that the source books rarely differentiate between the two when discussing Caitiff.
  • There's mention in the Revised Clanbook: Gangrel discussing a Caitiff who looked all Gangrel who had his blood examined by a Tremere, and the warlock said that the so-called Caitiff was of the Gargoyle Bloodline. So yeah, who knows?

The Baali are an offshoot of the Followers of Set

Weirdly, never brought up as a direct possibility. (The Gangrel seems to be the most popular choice in canon.) But both follow twisted dark religions, and they share two out of three disciplines. Seems a strong prospect.
  • I've always had the Baali as the main clan and the Setites being an offshoot.
  • Denied by the canon. While it's possible that Set was the antediluvian that created the Baali, it's hinted that it was either Capadocian or, even a more interesting, earthshaking, possibility, Saulot.
  • The similarities are skindeep; while they both practice dark faiths the Settites and Baali believe drastically different things. Indeed Settites find demon worship in general and the Baali in particular pathetic (the aim is to escape enslavement to powerful beings, not embrace it). The lore tends toward the Baali being Salubri that went completely off the deep end and may have helped inspire Saulot to pursue Golconda.