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YMMV / Vampire: The Requiem

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  • Author's Saving Throw:
    • After complains about the Predator's Taint rules from the first edition, Blood and Smoke retooled it into the Predatory Aura, which unlike it is a completely controlled ability and won't cause Kindred to attack each other on sight.
    • An older criticism dating back to Vampire: The Masquerade was that vampires being Immune to Bullets but not bladed weapons meant vampire hunters could just slaughter them with relative ease using Katanas- making the guns effectively obsolete and causing everyone to go around walking in trenchcoats with katanas. Blood and Smoke changed it to have vampires' Super Toughness be upgraded to taking bashing damages from everything that would inflict lethal to humans, including blade weapons.
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  • Evil Is Sexy - The Daeva are made of this trope.
  • Fridge Brilliance - The dead girl plot in Ventrue actually references Belial's Brood mechanics and fluff to fight the strix. You know what that means!
  • Fridge Horror - All over the place, which is saying a lot when the game is already about horror.
    • A relatively mild example: independent Moroi (see Crippling Overspecialization). Most are kept on a short leash by the Ordo Dracul; most of the rest were killed. However, this means logically that there are those of the bloodline that didn't want to be leashed killers, enough that they refused... and survived. Meaning there are creatures out there powerful, cunning, or just plain tough enough to avoid targeted destruction at the hands of an entire covenant. This is actually discussed—bringing in or bringing down such creatures is sometimes tasked to disposable coteries that are more trouble than they're worth—but the implications aren't really delved into in-text.
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    • The Ghouls. It's hidden right on the surface, but when you make a Ghoul, you ruin a person's life as thoroughly as any addiction. The horror is explored in the Ghoul splatbook, with a Ghoul so desperate that he drinks the menstrual blood of another, recently fed ghoul. But otherwise the horror you wreak on this person is just implied.
      • Even more so: It's implied the reason the Duoloi, the ghouls who serve Belial's Brood, are so loyal is because of how well they're treated compared to mainstream ones. Yes, you read that right-the Card Carrying Villains treat their ghouls better then every other vampire in existence.
      • And by "how well they're treated", it's implied that any ghouls recruited by the Brood are already just as evil as the Brood vampires... so the Brood vampires are happily helping evil ghouls indulge their vices.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: One of the books, trying to encourage STs to emphasize the Darker and Edgier elements of WoD, pointed out how low New Orleans is below sea level, and how unstable the WoD-versions of the levies would be, what with it being a Crapsack World and all. Cue Hurricane Katrina...
    • Which is explored in Pandora's Book, which suggests a few ways for crossover-interested Storytellers to work with post-Katrina New Orleans.
    • The clanbooks also have a running narrative involving a wave of nightmares being spawned by the destruction of several vampires during the storm, as well as a number of very bad things happening to the survivors.
    • To drive the point home, the original supplement's suggested outcomes for such a story were much more positive than how things actually came out.
  • Idiot Plot: The following is either an incredibly good (bad) example of an idiot plot, or the horrors created by the greatest Kindred Chess Master of all: the Ordo Dracul book gives the story of the Azerkatil bloodline's founding as a convoluted plot a mysterious vampire called the Red Sultan engineered. He thought his rival in life, Dracula, had used his strange Coils of the Dragon to become an actual dragon. He also thought it was necessary to create a task force to slay this dragon. The Red Sultan commanded the creation and destruction of multitudes of bloodlines. The rules say it takes a powerful vampire, and a few generations of childer, to create a bloodline, and it seems the Red Sultan was able to sacrifice many of them... He's also still extant. So, either those powerful vampires were all idiots, or the Red Sultan's a Chess Master.
  • Jerkass Woobie / The Woobie: Any vaguely sympathetic vampire probably qualifies. Kindred as a whole are manipulative, backstabbing bastards who survive by treating humans like cattle, playing on people's superstitions, and frequently abuse them. But on the other hand, they are genuinely fighting with the Beast and desperately clinging to their humanity, and usually end up losing the battle. Especially blatant in 2E, where Humanity no longer just defines their moral code- it defines how much they still relate to Humanity despite being undead.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Many characters could qualify, but half of the Ventrue actually run on this.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Goes without saying, though the Nosferatu discipline of Nightmare is, as might be inferred, an excellent example.
    • Notably, there's Cymothoa Sanguinaria, a hideous parasite from Wicked Dead. Once it infects a mortal host, it begins usurping control of the body, driving the host to seek out blood. As time passes, the parasite takes full control, leaving the host's consciousness aware but powerless, forced to watch everything the parasite does. And that's not getting into how exactly it spawns... Based off a real-life parasitic isopod, Cymothoa excigua, that commonly replaces fish's tongues.
    • And then there's the Strix. When facing off against purposeless demons is the least of your problems with them, shit gets real.
  • Rule-Abiding Rebel — Some Carthians try to find reforms for the Requiem that don't disrupt the Invictus-derived model of praxis, lest they get boots on their necks.
  • Scrappy Mechanic: The Predator's Taint rule from First Edition. A means by which vampires recognize each other, their Beasts struggling for dominance. When two vampires meet for the first time, their Beasts react to each other based on their Blood Potency. Lower BP vampires have to resist a Fear frenzy, higher BP vampires have to resist an Anger frenzy, equal BP vampires both have to resist Anger to fight for dominance right there. A few Discipline powers modified how your Blood Potency was considered for Predator's Taint, and the result was a common complaint that any two vampires meeting for the first time could easily result in the Final Death of one of them. Much advice was given about how to apply it only when "dramatically appropriate," before the whole mechanic was completely overhauled for Blood and Smoke, being instead replaced by the much more practical Predatory Aura.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: The Brujah becoming the Bruja could very well be this for any player of Vampire: The Masquerade transitioning over to the new setting; aside from being downgraded from a full-fledged clan to a bloodline, the original Brujah were revolutionaries who shaped history with uprisings, activism and passion, rebels, punk rockers, working tirelessly to improve society. Vampire The Requiem's Bruja? Are a psychopathic criminal biker gang who proudly uphold greed and sloth as values and makes money by taking part in things like prostitution, drugs-trafficking and illegal arm trading. All of them. It was clearly done to streamline the clans along with many other, more well-received changes, and the Gangrel in the new setting can serve more or less the same purpose, but it does come as a bit of a slap in the face to some older players in order to make a hamfisted attempt to add vampires similar to those from From Dusk Till Dawn.
    • As the first "New World of Darkness" gameline after the end of the world for the Old World of Darkness, Requiem was going to face a lot of this no matter what they did. Ironically, a common complaint is that Requiem is too much like Masquerade, to the point where the Second Edition was loaded with changes to both make the mechanics better and establish the game as its own entity.
  • Uncanny Valley: The lower the humanity, the closer a Kindred is to this.
    • The Haunts can be fugly bat-faced monsters out of your worst nightmares or they can be beautiful... perfectly beautiful... disturbingly beautiful.
      • Some of their bloodlines lack any flaws in their appearance, but are so taken by their Blue and Orange Morality that it's the same issue.
  • Woobie Species: All three of the Half-Damned qualify, really.
    • Ghouls essentially are a Slave Race Kindred create by making humans drink some of their blood, thus granting a portion of their powers, but turning them into Vitae junkies in the process. Through a combination of regular addiction and a supernatural compulsion to obey whoever they get their fix from, they are then gradually turned into submissive servants vampires can charge with all their dirty deeds and abuse. To make it worse, they can only stay immortal for as long as they still have Vitae in their body, and running out if it immediately triggers No Immortal Inertia.
    • Dhampirs are children of vampires with humans, usually born through a ritual or some other unusual way. Predictably, Kindred make absolutely terrible parents, with their treatment ranging from treating their children like servants or (in the Ordo Dracul's case) guinea pigs to just abandoning them to their human parent and never showing up; even the ones who are genuinely loving and caring are at risk of completely screwing up their life, since they still need to adjust to their father or mother only being out during night time and occasionally killing people by accident during Frenzy. The various Covenants also have various levels of Fantastic Racism toward them, with even the nicest ones usually classifying them below full Kindred. And while only a minority of them end up becoming Vampire Hunters, the ones who did got such a fearsome reputation most Kindred are wary of them as a whole as a result.
    • Revenants are unlucky people whose Embrace went wrong, usually because they were drained dry by a Low-Humanity vampire. The ugly result is to turn them into messy, incomplete vampires with almost none of the advantages Kindred have and twice the weaknesses; they have no Clan, cannot Embrace nor create Blood Bond, and their body can only store a very limited amount of Vitae. Worse, even when they do manage to feed, the Vitae escapes from their body during daytime, leaving them waking up each night in a pool of blood and hungry again, meaning they are much more likely to be subjects to Frenzy and kill randomly. While they can still learn Disciplines, they have no affinity due to their lack of Clan, meaning they have to find actual Kindred willing to teach them, and hopefully turn them into full vampires through the Uplifting. Further complicating matter is that Kindred look down upon them, treating them like cripples in need of help at best or dangerous walking Masquerade breaches at worst and placing them only slightly above Ghouls; the ones who aren't willing to Uplift them right away will often use them as pawns, and creating a Revenant is seen as a disgrace, meaning their "Sire" will usually try to get rid of them before they are found out.

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