In Bloodlines you can play as a vampire from one of the seven clans that are members of the Camarilla sect. Each clan conforms to a popular vampire archetype. There are the decadent Toreador, reminiscent of the vampires from Anne Rice novels; the aristocratic Ventrue (Dracula was probably one of these); and the deformed, skulking Nosferatu similar to the vampire from the 1922 Murnau classic film.
Each clan is geared toward a different style of play so you'll definitely find one that suits you.
The Brujah are brutes and thugs with a bad, bad temper. Punks,
bikers, metal heads, social outcasts and left-wing radicals make up their
ranks. Their clan is an oxymoron; they're united by their rebellious streak
and they somehow manage to remain in the Camarilla despite their dislike
of authority. They can rely on each other though, and while their clan
is largely disorganized they will rally together to help their clan mates
in times of need.
Merits: The Brujah love to fight and prefer to get their
message across as personally as possible - with their fists. They a +1 bonus to Unarmed Combat.
Flaws: Due to their hot temper, the Brujah have only
tenuous control over the Beast within. They are more likely to frenzy
when taking damage in combat.
The Gangrel are loners and wanderers. They can go for years
at a time without encountering another member of their own clan, much
less another vampire. They are attuned to the natural world and prefer
their solitude far from the hustle and bustle of modern civilization where
they can live and hunt in peace. As isolationists they have become very
self-reliant and while that means there may not be any allies around should
a Gangrel find himself in a predicament, they are less likely to need
help than the other clans anyway. Such a basic and primal existence brings the
Gangrel into a close relationship with their inner Beast.
Merits: Living alone and in the wild hones their survival
instincts. When a Gangrel frenzies those instincts take over and they
get a +5 bonus to Strength, Stamina and Wits.
Flaws: Having a great affinity with natural forces
means that the Beast is closer to the surface of their consciousness than
with the other clans. Gangrel are more likely to frenzy when taking damage
The Malkavians are insane. Their madness dwells in their blood and is
passed from sire to childe generation after generation. Of course, madness
is a subjective thing. Those afflicted with it might regard it as a gift
more so than a malady. The forms that the madness takes run the gamut
of known archetypes - from the loony prankster to the tripped out
conspiracy nut to the stoic but sadistic psychopath who might seem outwardly
normal and not reveal the extent to which insanity rages within him.
Merits: Due to their unique 'insights' the Malkavians get a +2 bonus to
their Inspection feat and the voices they hear will sometimes give them
Flaws: They're completely mad. Their dialog is bizarre and sometimes
entirely incomprehensible. The voices aren't always right, or even telling
The Nosferatu are a walking horror to mortals. Upon being embraced their
cursed blood twists and contorts the afflicted into hideous, foul creatures.
When one looks the way a Nosferatu does one would tend to stick to the
shadows - and that's exactly what the Nosferatu do. They seldom
reveal their presence, preferring to move through the dark alleys and
sewers where others wouldn't dare tread. They hear a lot of things from
their vantage point in the dark, too. The Nosferatu trade in information
and their library of secrets on the other clans is considerable. They're
the ones you go to when you need to know. But it will come at a price.
Merits: Used to a life dwelling in the fetid sewers
they make their homes in, they're no strangers to making do with a limited
menu. The Nosferatu get a bonus when feeding on rats. After all, they're plentiful and they don't care what you look like.
Flaws: Monstrous creatures, their appearance can never
go above 0. You can also forget about sweet-talking a mortal into giving you
her phone number or charming them into an alley for a quick snack.
Decadent, hedonistic, shallow. These words might best describe the Toreador
to an outsider but in reality they're far more sophisticated than that.
The embrace brings with it a (sometimes paralyzing) fascination with beauty.
Works of art, designer clothes and classical music are as vital to a Toreador
as the precious blood upon which they subsist. Not all are content to
merely admire and among the Toreador are many artists who pour their passion
into canvas, paper or music. Their fascination with beauty isn't without
its problems though. Imagine if you will a vampire who stays up too late
and becomes fixated on the beauty of a morning sunrise...
Merits: Still fascinated with the trappings of the mortal world, the
Toreador are perhaps not as removed from their former mortal selves than the
other clans. As such they their cost for buying humanity is halved and their humanity rewards are doubled.
Flaws: The higher you are the further you fall. Because of their stronger
grasp on humanity the Toreador have an acute sense of ethics not shared
by the other clans. When you do commit an act that reduces your humanity
the effects are doubled.
The Tremere are relative newcomers to the world of Vampires. Originally
a cabal of sorcerers and mages, some outsiders claim that they are in fact not Vampires
at all and they have merely mastered a form of magic that grants them
immortality and share all the hallmarks that is the curse of Caine. Some
say that their founder, Tremere, succeeded in capturing one of the Antediluvians
and diablerizing him - thus becoming an extremely powerful vampire
himself before then passing the curse on to the rest of his mages. Either
way the Tremere are regarded as interlopers in the world of Vampires and
are not trusted by the other clans. Despite this, they maintain a strong
and increasing presence in the Camarilla although they are perhaps only
tolerated due to the consequences of having the insidious Tremere as foes
instead of allies. They practice and ancient form of blood magic called
Thaumaturgy which was made only more powerful with the introduction of
Cainite blood into their veins. They are shrewd, devious and utterly without
Merits: They have Thaumaturgy at their disposal - a unique discipline
that grants them terrible powers no other clan possesses.
Flaws: The Tremere devote their time to scholarly pursuits. As a consequence
their physical development suffers. No physical stat can be raised above
The Ventrue aristocratic and influential. The members of clan Ventrue
tend to rise to (and be drawn from) the upper echelons of society. As
such their ranks are filled by intelligent, strong willed and powerful
people. They are sophisticated and organized; they founded the Camarilla
and still lead the sect to this day. They ensure that Traditions are maintained
for the good of all vampire society and direct the jyhad against the Sabbat.
While their status affords them comfortable unlives they are perhaps a
bit spoiled by this and are regarded as old fashioned and a little detached
from the "real world" by some of the other clans.
Merits: They can use their Dominate discipline in conversation with other
characters giving them more dialog choices and increasing their chances
for favorable outcomes. Their status within Kindred society is also a bonus and they are more readily accepted by other Camarilla.
Flaws: Life at the top means they're not accustomed to getting by at
the bottom of society. Only the blood of upper class mortals can sate
them. If they feed from a bum or a prostitute there is a chance they will
only vomit it straight back up again and they can't feed on rats at all.