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Population and Generation - timeline theory

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  • #16
    Trying to cleave to any specific ratio at any time is really a fool's errand; that's not something that can be contextualized or predicted with straight, uniform maths. As others said, it's not about how many vampires a given human population can support but rather how many vampires can exist in a given area while maintaining the Masquerade. That, in itself, isn't necessarily a factor of how many vampires are around, but rather who's there, what their attitudes are, who's in charge, how well they behave themselves, and the amount of resources not directly linked to blood supply (read, influences, domains, subcultures, etc.) to go around. There isn't a magical "well, once this many vampires move in, shit goes down" threshold linked to demographics.

    Complicating this is modern mass communication, the transition from agrarian life to urban life over the course of the Industrial Revolution, the rise of urban sprawl, and the wildly variant degrees of infrastructure quality over the course of the developed and developing world. What works for vampires in Sao Paolo, for example, won't work for vampires in Portland, OR, and vice versa. Hell, what works for vamps in Portland may not even work for vamps in Seattle given the latter's..."challenges"...over the past decade.

    That said, as someone who's lived in rural and suburban areas most of their life, I'd actually provide a counter-perspective to orthodoxy. Sure, the anonymity of urban cores is of generally greater benefit to vamps. Sure, rural communities are more tightly-knit than urban communities and that represents a series of challenges to feeding, haven maintenance, and remaining hidden urban vamps may not deal with. But, for a vampire that generally has their shit together, the main challenges to the Masquerade aren't in interacting with humans but rather other vampires where fighting over domains, influences, herds, and the like where these micro-Jyhad plays inevitably bring out the worst in each other. Smaller vampire populations spread out over smaller communities is going to yield an environment where they can coexist without stepping on each other's toes too much, and that coexistence will be much more harmonious when the majority of threats are external.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Theodrim View Post
      That said, as someone who's lived in rural and suburban areas most of their life, I'd actually provide a counter-perspective to orthodoxy. Sure, the anonymity of urban cores is of generally greater benefit to vamps. Sure, rural communities are more tightly-knit than urban communities and that represents a series of challenges to feeding, haven maintenance, and remaining hidden urban vamps may not deal with. But, for a vampire that generally has their shit together, the main challenges to the Masquerade aren't in interacting with humans but rather other vampires where fighting over domains, influences, herds, and the like where these micro-Jyhad plays inevitably bring out the worst in each other. Smaller vampire populations spread out over smaller communities is going to yield an environment where they can coexist without stepping on each other's toes too much, and that coexistence will be much more harmonious when the majority of threats are external.
      Very true, though it is interesting that the Masquerade by design doesn't facilitate a harmonious vampiric society. By this I am referring to the fact that while there might be designated hunting grounds in a city, such as its local bars, there isn't just a vampire run building that is full of lobotomized mortals that no one will miss and any vampire in good standing can feed from without worry of being observed or exposed. Sure that sounds a bit dark for a Humanity focused group like the Camarilla, but its not like you can't just use prisoners scheduled for execution or people guilty of horrible crimes. If anything that would technically be more benevolent that the current mortal system of incarceration and execution.

      Personally I feel this is a choice of game design to promote stories and role play rather than decisions made to create a functional vampire society that could go undetected by modern day human society. The ship always being on the verge of sinking makes for more interesting games than a ship that is fully functional 90% or more the time.

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      • #18
        In my V20 game, one of the character, a high humanity religious scholar Lasombra antitrbu, has over many years of research and testing created synthetic vitae. The problem with it is that it needs to be distilled inside of a human to give it the spark of nourishment. She hasn't implemented it full scale, because it would necessitate a human farm, and the character is opposed to that. One side benefit of the compound that she created is that it increases the longevity for blood outside of a human body in blood bags/bottles. Not as long as alchemical preservation, but enough to give a good shelf life to the 3 blood points sitting in that wine bottle in the back of a vampire's fridge. Secondarily, it can fortify animal blood to be a longer lasting viable feeding source, so many of the drinks purchased at Elysium are actually half and half animal and human blood.

        The PCs in my game were embraced just after the Civil War. in 1991, between they occupy the following positions; Prince (Toreador), Seneschal (Ventrue), Sheriff (Nosferatu), and Primogen (Brujah, Gangrel and the Lasombra antitribu mentioned about representing caitiff/bloodlines). The prince is the highest generation of the group, and only took power out of fear of what some of the other power players might do. She has kept power by appealing to a vampire's sense of safety, providing the city a refuge of the displaced but the Vampiric citizenry help to ensure the safety of the city as a whole. She's had a few challengers over the years, but through manipulation, guile and some dumb luck she's maintained power. The game is set in the second largest city in Arizona, which the coterie has helped to transform to rival Las Vegas. I have copied some of the historical vampiric events that occurred in Chicago and applied them to Tucson. So the coterie just finished dealing with the Lupine war that too out a third of the city's population, mostly the more recently embraced childer vampires. Speaking of which.. I need to update the play through on here, it has been a while...

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Thoth View Post

          Very true, though it is interesting that the Masquerade by design doesn't facilitate a harmonious vampiric society...The ship always being on the verge of sinking makes for more interesting games than a ship that is fully functional 90% or more the time.
          Most don't really notice it due to the story-downtime structure of most chronicles, but it's what happens. Months of the same old shit on end, something noteworthy happens maybe a few times a year, once or twice a decade something major goes down. Most of the time shit goes down because vampires have such long stretches of nothing, that grudges and feuds fester until they start fucking with each other just to stave off boredom.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Theodrim View Post
            Most don't really notice it due to the story-downtime structure of most chronicles, but it's what happens. Months of the same old shit on end, something noteworthy happens maybe a few times a year, once or twice a decade something major goes down. Most of the time shit goes down because vampires have such long stretches of nothing, that grudges and feuds fester until they start fucking with each other just to stave off boredom.
            This is another of those things that seems weird to me. The fluff and setting is more or less geared for most players to be playing Lost Boys coteries, which are little more than a gang with fangs. They stick around the same city and don't amass power so much as just goof around like teenagers, regardless of their actual mental/psychological age. These sorts of vampires would live for grudges and feuds to stave off boredom.

            Since vampires can choose whom to embrace that means that they essentially get to choose what sort of behavioral qualities are added to vampire society. Thus embracing anyone who would be a good fit for the title of Harpy probably wouldn't make the cut. Incompetent socialites who can't do anything other than drink while being stuck up tend to deserve impalement rather than an embrace. But once again, the game needs problems for the players to overcome.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by JRRParker View Post
              The Second generation mostly embraced between 7,000-8,300 BCE, with Set being the lone exception of directly-embraced 3rd generation around 5,000 BCE
              Its a very interesting observation on how generations tend to stop embracing. I think its worth mentioning that it was a common idea on the original board that Set was embraced into the 4th generation and diablerized his way to the 3rd. Several things printed since then seems to add to the circumstantial evidence.

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