Splats. Clans. Careers. Archetypes. Whatever. Comes down to this: I love character classes.
A good class tells you something about a character’s relationship to the world. Where they come from, how they interact.
There’s a lot of argument over what the “core” classes for Dungeons & Dragons are. For me, they’re Fighter, Thief and Magic User. Each of these characters represents a different way of interacting with the D&D world: combat, tricks or spells. In early versions of D&D, each of these interactions operates on an entirely different mechanical system, though they also each overlap.
Vampire: The Requiem‘s clans work the same way. Each one represents a distinct take on the vampire from genre media. (Except, arguably, the Mekhet, something we struggled with for a while.) Following the nineties fad for universal point buy systems, any vampire can do anything, but the system gives you cost breaks for choosing powers that fit the clan concept.
Vampire clans also say something about where your character comes from. A Ventrue neonate might come from as many different backgrounds as a D&D fighter, but he automatically gets something a D&D hero doesn’t: a family.
In future posts, I’m going to be looking at individual character classes from D&D, as well as different class schema, their impact on play, and my personal feelings about what they represent and which are the best.