Games, Design & Game Design

Thrones of Blood Character Ideas

In Design Process, Game Design, Roleplaying Games, Sketches on March 17, 2011 at 10:28 am

This feudal world is ruled by eternally feuding Vampire Lords, each immortal and terrible, each forever obsessed with gaining more territory, wealth and glory. Immortality itself is jealously guarded, and the Lords fear more competitors – thus, they require mortal servants to carry out their wishes. You are those servants.

The players of this game take on the roles of the inner circle of a Vampire Lords council, each playing a very specific part. Each Lord requires:

  • The Coffin, one who ensures the Lord’s safe rest. The protector.
  • The Fang, one who procures the Lord’s nourishment. The hunter.
  • The Sword, one who enforces the Lord’s will over others. The warrior.
  • The Eye, one who discovers plots and secrets within the Lord’s domain. The spy.
  • The Bat, one who carries the will of his Lord throughout the land. The messenger.

Each character is composed of four attributes, which concern the servants relationship to his lord, the people of the land, and his- or herself. Your Lord requires you to have all of these in some measure in order to serve as an effective intermediary.

  • Loyalty measures how truly loyal you are to your Lord. If you lose all your Loyalty, you lose faith and defect.
  • Humanity measures how much empathy you have with the people who make up your Lord’s holdings. If you lose all of your Humanity, your Lord turns you into a mindless Thrall.
  • Cruelty measures your capacity to inflict pain on others. If you lose all of your Cruelty, you become useless to your Lord and are destroyed.
  • Honor measures how true you are to yourself. If you lose all of your Honor, you take your own worthless life.

Currently, I’m thinking of a card-based system, with black cards representing you acting on the Lords will (spades for Loyalty, clubs for Cruelty), and red cards representing your personal decision-making (hearts for Humanity, diamonds for Honor).

Next up: sketch out what the GM does (oh yes, there is a GM), the framework for what you actually DO in play, and the role of secret knowledge, if any.

(What is this all about? Here’s the details.)

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  1. If I were the fang, I would be the Rake, the farmer. Why go to all that bother hunting, when you can just farm humans in a seraglio? Easier to induce a more nuanced emotional range in them when you harvest them, too, if you’ve kept them fat, fit and happy. Even the taste of terror grows old to an immortal.

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