Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

101 Domains

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • 101 Domains

    Inspired by the amazing writeups in Blood and Smoke, I though people might want to share their cool ideas for atypical domains. Here are a few I knocked up quickly. One is a fairly obvious reference. I decided not to tie them to real world cities so they're more customisable and generally wanted none of them to fit the classic model.

    The Mother’s Army

    This used to a textbook domain. A permissive tyrant Prince, bickering underlings and an awkward tension between Covenants.

    Then the Prophetess came from far away. She claimed the power of prescience. She saw the Prince’s inner circle dying in fire. She saw Carthian agitators ripped limb from limb. She saw priests forced to drink from veins in a blasphemous parody of communion before they were nailed to crosses to face the rising dawn.

    And her visions came true.

    Many would argue it’s cheating to prophesise deaths that you orchestrate, but naysayers didn’t live long enough to debate the point.

    A loyal cult of assassin-mystics protected the Prophetess, their mastery of little-known Cruac rituals giving them an edge over their opponents, as well as their fanaticism – some of them walked without fear to deaths supposedly prophesised.

    Perhaps oddly, it was the Dragons who the Circle devoted the most attention to destroying. Perhaps they had a clue about what was coming. In any case, if any remain alive, they are in torpor or (probably literally) deep underground.

    But it wasn’t the mastery of prophecy or the powerful assassins that won the domain. It was the dreams. Every day, when the rested, the Kindred dreamed of something. The Mother of Monsters herself. Converts willing, grudging and terrified flocked to her banner. Despite divergent goals from different interpretations of the dreams, the Prophet united them and together they won the domain. Those who refused to convert were killed. The few that did not flee remain in hiding, the few that remain loyal to the Spear hide in priest-holes in the homes of surviving ghouls and fortify hidden chantries.

    Now, with the war over, an uneasy peace reigns. The dreams get stronger every night. Something is coming. Many of the cult devote themselves to speeding the arrival of the Mother of Monsters and the city is full of terrifying omens. Occult symbols form from the cracks on pavement slabs. Blood oozes from the spaces between bricks on the facades of buildings. Dust-devils scatter grit and garbage into sinister mandalas. Sensitive humans go mad or flee the city.

    Some, heretically, fear and seek to prevent whatever is happening, seeing the dreams as warnings. Others try to focus on the more nurturing aspects of Crone beliefs, others jockey for position within a new political landscape and a Prince uninterested in rulership.

    Everyone agrees on one thing; the dreams and the war were just the beginning. And only the Prophetess knows what comes next.

    ***

    The Dead Boys Club

    (Best suited to cities famed for universities and learning such as Cambridge - both England and Massachusetts)

    Do domains shape the vampires on them directly, the blood of its citizens slowly changing the Kindred who feed upon it? Or are certain types of vampires merely drawn to places that match their personalities?

    It’s a question that might be debated by the thoughtful Kindred of this domain in a city famous worldwide for its universities, an academic powerhouse. Certainly, they are an appropriate group for such a place, with praxis held by a strange, exclusive club/fraternity of scholarly vampires.
    Politically, it’s a curious domain, where covenants matter little and the elders exist in their own complicated clique above such concerns. Indeed, to an outside observer it appears a perfect Invictus domain, though some of the elders would profess to be Carthians, and they’re not wrong. Another observer would note the prevalence of Dragons and the widespread acceptance and cooperation with their experiments among other elders and assume they were, at least philosophically, dominant.

    The elders, who are unusually numerous, run the show in this city. They’ve entered a stable peace - though they’re all rivals point-scoring is the name of the game rather than the occasional betrayals and attempts at murder that characterise other domains. The games are played almost entirely through neonates and mortals. They perform psychological experiments on both. Two elders on good terms with one another trick younger Kindred into fighting brutal proxy battles as though they were old men playing chess in a park. There is no Prince, and should anyone try to fill a throne that seems vacant, the Dead Boys Club will close ranks and tear them apart.

    To the Invictus, it’s a model society with elders in their rightful place. To the Carthians it’s a place with an unconventional government (some of the right-wing vampires proclaim it a libertarian paradise, their opposites consider it more of a socialist democracy, and neither are entirely right or wrong) that has no single tyrant holding the reigns and with power shared. The fact that it’s nearly all in elder hands, what some would call in contravention of the Carthian aim, is ignored. The Dragons are free to experiment, colonise Wyrm’s Nests with impunity and even encouragement from those outside the Ordo. The Lancea et Sanctum contingent is larger than one might expect, perhaps as a result of the city’s history, though very liberal. Their priests cheerfully debate on the existence and nature of god with maltheistic Dragons and atheistic Carthians. Only the Circle has no real presence here, though a few young vampires with ties to the student body profess some similar beliefs.

    ***

    The Ghoul Kingdom

    This domain represents something all Kindred fear. The hidden masters of the kine made into slaves. The predators made into cattle.

    The city’s name is spoken in hushed whispers among kindred that know of it. It’s a warning to control ghouls well, to keep them satisfied but not to allow them too much freedom. It’s an example of why the Masquerade is most important of all Traditions.

    Here, ghouls and hunters joined forces. Here, vampires who had coiled themselves around the veins and arteries of a city’s political structure, who hid in secret vaults in old homes and sewer tunnels carefully erased from maps, were destroyed over the course of several days. Some havens burned. Some vampires were pulled from their tomb-beds and thrown into the noonday sun. Most, however, were staked into torpor and carefully transported.

    Now they are milked. Kept as cattle, a source of Vitae by a cult-like group of humans who quietly stepped into the Kindred's role behind the scenes, using their Disciplines and carefully rationed blood to keep their former supporters and attendants in line.

    The ghoul-kings, however, face some difficulties. The blood bond is a risk they strive to avoid but even by talking blood from many different vampires it is an inevitability, and many still feel a conflicted loyalty for their former regnants. The vampires (mostly younger, weaker Kindred) are carefully imprisoned, weakened by Banes, caged by fire and sunlight, prevented from using Disciplines to escape, but one slip-up would be enough for the Kindred to begin a bloody vengeance. Some of the humans have got a little too eager to sell Vitae as a drug and will eventually attract attention from organised crime or law enforcement that isn’t local (and already addicted), and others (recognising the dangers of drawing attention or increasing demand of their finite Vitae supply) oppose them, threatening to tear the group in two. Finally, there is the constant risk of vampires from other domains coming to set things right, to fix this terrifying and disgusting inversion of the unnatural order.

    ***

    The Downward Spiral

    This city fell into decay, with organised crime and rampant corruption, as well as economic failure, poisoning it. To all but a few rich and corrupt, the city was a hellhole. To Kindred, however, it was a paradise, where they infiltrated the infrastructure far more thoroughly than the criminals (who they also quietly suborned).

    Then the deaths started. Some said it was VII, or Belial’s Brood, the Strix or some other supernatural being. Others insisted it was hunters, and that the vampires had been too brazen, too secure in their position, and doomed themselves.

    The domain fell into chaos. Then the Prince died in his Haven. And rumours began of a figure that was stalking them, killing them off. A hunter, a vampire, many men in the same mask… The rumours are constant. But the power vacuum was the real threat here. With the Prince and his Invictus court broken, the mad scramble for praxis began. The mysterious forces targeted elders and covenant leaders (groups with considerable overlap), ultimately splintering the covenants and turning the city into a mess of neonate gangs, some led by the occasional ancilla.

    The Circle is a tiny gang of blood-mystics. The Lancea’s ragged, shrinking congregations wear different gang colours and fight on the streets, though every week they meet in peace for mass. The Priests strive to remain neutral, but have been known to perform Theban rituals for gangs dominated by believers or, occasionally, to the Invictus.

    The Ordo Dracul are particularly few here. There are only three Dragons, the youngest an ancilla more than fifty years dead. That they sidestep the mysterious figure that mostly targets older Kindred has not gone unnoticed. The rarity of Dragons is not due to a lack of interest or enemies moving against the covenant; there are always young vampires interested in joining the Order. But the Order’s usual punishing treatment of initiates is taken to extremes here, driving every aspirant away, many believe intentionally. They are forced to undertake countless menial tasks and errand for the Dragons. They are subjected to cruel, seemingly pointless, experiments. Forced to submit to Blood Bonds. To face fire and starvation and sunlight. Those who don’t give up, cursing the Dragons, tend to die. Yet the Triumvirate insists they would welcome new blood if any neophyte proved themselves worthy and every year another neonate is convinced they might just be that one.

    The Invictus ruled this domain once. Then the chaos came, covenants collapsing into gangs and cults. They floundered before taking the same route themselves; the organised crime model is one the First Estate is comfortable within and even the more traditionalist members shifted into it quickly enough. They wear expensive suits with cufflinks made from pulled fangs. They have deep roots in human criminal fraternities and the city's shockingly corrupt law enforcement and vie with other Kindred over sources of wealth. And they do what little they can to enforce whatever remains of the Masquerade, brutally. Their thuggish enforcers still call themselves knights, though most are far more comfortable with a tire iron than a sword.

    The Carthians collapsed into dozens of splinters, many clinging to diverse ideologies, with most devolving into petty gangs built around charismatic leaders.

    Other notable gangs include a brood of atavistic Nosferatu who roost in the subway systems and sewers, demanding tribute from the vampires who rest or hunt in such an ideal territory, a nomadic group dominated by Daeva and Gangrel who delight in mayhem and violence (sworn enemies of the Invictus) and a doomsday cult of Sanctum fundamentalists. Notable individuals include a Mekhet ‘problem-solver’ who hires himself to gangs for a variety of tasks, a Nosferatu who runs a popular nightclub that serves as a rough Elysium, protected by a small cadre of ghoul bodyguards, a former-Crone who performs ritual murders to fuel strange blood magic and of course the mysterious figure that still hunts and kills Kindred every night. But with the Traditions poorly enforced, Embraces are as common as Final Deaths, and the Masquerade gets thinner and thinner...
    Last edited by Eremite; 03-14-2016, 08:00 AM.


    Onyx Path Freelancer: Demon Storyteller's Guide, Dark Eras, Night Horrors: Enemy Action
    Storyteller's Guide Extra Material
    After the Fall: Bonus Material

  • #2
    Nice!

    The Downward Spiral is very similar to the Baghdad game I'm planning right now.

    Comment


    • #3
      This is less of a Domain and more of a Prince who has to decide what her Domain will be:

      Now What?

      You've paid your dues. You worship the Crone with all your dead heart. You've learned her secrets--not as much as others, but you can whip up some nasty blood mojo--and you've become the monster you think she wanted you to be. Maybe you're a Ventrue next-coming-of-Crowley, with a list of spirit verges you know by heart; maybe you're a Khabit who eats Strix for breakfast; maybe you're a Daeva mystery priestess, both loved and feared and lusted for. Doesn't matter. You've kept enough of your Humanity in tact to keep the various cannibalistic factions together. You rose to the top: you became hierophant.

      One night, the Archbishop falls to torpor. He was a bully and a bastard, using his Sanctified to oppress and massacre your Acolytes for decades. Without him, they can't hold it together. You and the Mother's Army burn them all in a bonfire out in the woods.

      Now you're Prince. Now you're going to run things the way they---

      But what IS the right way to run things? Acolyte standards aren't high, and you've always been more political, more cerebral, even if you walk the walk as well as the Savage who peeled off the skin of each and every Theban Sorcerer he could find.

      Or...well...

      ...even you found that a bit hard to stomach.

      At least the Sanctified pretended...your "people" would just as soon sacrifice a baby as a goat. They're not fit to be bureaucrats. Thugocracy is what you're looking at, and YOU get to be prince of the thugs. IF one of them doesn't claim Kali or Eris or whoever the fuck came to her in a dream and told her to eat you.

      Maybe you didn't think this through. Without the Sanctified to rally against, those aforementioned cannibalistic hordes aren't going to hold together much longer.

      The Carthians could help. They have the infrastructure. The First Estate has ins at City Hall, and they're just weak enough that you might be able to keep them on a short leash.

      Hell, even the Dragons have some blood dolls to spare.

      But you're an Acolyte Prince. That's what they want you to be. There are a lot of people depending on you. A lot of people who have expectations. They're not going to hand over "their" city to a bunch of non-believers.

      Now what?



      Social justice vampire/freelancer | He/Him

      VtR: Curses of Caine in Requiem 2ndTricks of the DamnedBtP: Secrets of VancouverCofD: The CabinActual Play: Vampire: The Requiem – Bloodlines
      Podcast: The Breakup

      Comment


      • #4
        I would say some form of social Darwinism. The individual domains are run by different cults. The Prince tolerates them as long as they pay their rent. Or maybe an Inca like society, that keeps expanding, because it needs more sacrifices.

        Comment


        • #5
          Two sides of a coin, here, meant to post the first one ages ago...

          Rise of the Old Ones

          Nobody knew the city was full of sleeping elders, sealed away in forgotten, hidden vaults in the basements and foundations of buildings. But now they’re waking up. An entire population of elders, blood thinned and memories addled by time, are returning.

          It’s a crisis. The population of Kindred is increasing without anyone breaking the Traditions, putting a strain on resources, and increasing risk to the Masquerade. Many of the elders are unstable to boot, confused and even dangerous.

          The newly awoken elders bring with them some old covenants and traditions long ago forgotten. They also include a few Sanctified who have a divergent theology heretical to the present Lancea et Sanctum and blood sorcerers who use something that isn’t Crúac but makes the Circle very excited and very nervous. None of them claim to have heard of the Invictus, a snub at the ruling covenant, who find themselves torn between the pro-elder party line and the deepening crisis.

          Perhaps most worryingly, the elders know they all went into torpor to escape something. But none of them can recall exactly what it was, or why they’re all waking up now…

          ***

          The Sleeping City

          The Carthians took the city some time ago in a great revolution. Now their ruling council argue and bicker over all but the most basic laws, but firm on one policy that has forced equality upon the domain.

          The Law of Sleep.

          When vampires become elders, their blood thick and potent, they must enter voluntary torpor until their blood thins or face permanent exile. In this way elders are forced into a semblance of parity with neonates. Though the Carthians protect the hidden vaults of the sleepers, many chose to leave, including some former Carthian loyalists. The law is increasingly unpopular and naturally older, more powerful vampires are the most likely to oppose it, pushing for reform in a system theoretically designed to permit and even encourage it.

          It’s an awkward situation about to become far, far more awkward with one of the most prominent leaders of the Movement only two years from his first hibernation and with one of the few Invictus elders who survived the revolution and did not chose exile, a charismatic and popular Daeva, about to wake. The covenant is about to face a terrible leadership crisis as rivals return. They may be forced to break their own laws and risk a counter-revolution, either refusing or delaying sleep or putting down a sleeping enemy.


          Onyx Path Freelancer: Demon Storyteller's Guide, Dark Eras, Night Horrors: Enemy Action
          Storyteller's Guide Extra Material
          After the Fall: Bonus Material

          Comment


          • #6
            Those are really cool, Eremite.


            My Bloodline conversions
            My House rules

            Comment


            • #7
              Cheers, all.

              I want to add some more Covenant-specific ones, have at least one for each covenant, maybe using one or two of Covenants from Danse Macabre. Will pick away at it when I have time. Feel free to add your own, people.


              Onyx Path Freelancer: Demon Storyteller's Guide, Dark Eras, Night Horrors: Enemy Action
              Storyteller's Guide Extra Material
              After the Fall: Bonus Material

              Comment


              • #8
                The House of Royals

                In this domain, the Invictus prince is known for using his influence to protect his mortal descendents. A poor man in life, the prince was delighted to learn that one of his descendents in the city had risen from his impoverished roots and founded a powerful megacorp with a large amount of influence over the city government . Since then the prince has acted as a power behind the throne for his mortal descendents.

                Recently the descendent of the prince currently running the family business has begun going through a nasty and very public divorce. the kindred of the city were captivated by the drama and the prince sometimes sent neonates to make sure that the CEO's soon to be ex-wife got as little of the company as possible. Almost completely ignored in all this were the children of the CEO, the custody battle even nastier than the battle for the company.

                In retrospect, that should have been a red flag for the prince. The CEO, his wife and their divorce lawyers were found butchered in the office where they were having a meeting to discuss a settlement, the children who were at the meeting missing and the Mekhet that was spying on the meeting beaten into torpor with a message carved into his chest "The sins of the fathers damn the sons".

                Now the prince is offering great rewards for whoever can rescues his mortal descendents, though the list of suspects is quite long. Mortals the family crushed on their way to the top, Carthian radicals that opposed the company's business practices, Lance fanatics that disapproved of the prince's closeness to his brood, a jealous childe of the prince and his coterie even rumors that children's crusade has returned and stolen the prince's bloodline.

                It's race against time to save the prince's linage, and in all this, no ones watching the company itself...


                Despite the user name I am actually bigender.

                My Savannah Setting for CofD can be found here

                My heroes as monster tamers rules for BtP can be found here

                Comment


                • #9
                  A Broken Land

                  This is a major metropolitan area, but it isn't a domain right now so much as it is a total mess. A recent earthquake caused fires, flooding, building collapses, loss of utility services, you name it. Untold numbers of Kindred died along with the mortal populace, but plenty remain.

                  It's total chaos: The prince is dead or missing, as are many of the inner circle, and the leading members of various covenants. Those that remain are a rag-tag bunch, and oddly, no shortage of the Unbound were lucky enough to ride out the disaster. Everyone has their own idea on how to rebuild, but no one single person or group has the power to pull the rest together, or put enough pressure on the local mortal authorities through the Masquerade—especially since the living are too busy trying to rebuild things themselves.

                  Instead, this region has become Balkanized. Self-styled petty Princes of little domains have sprung up everywhere, from a few blocks in size to a few miles, with each Princeling scheming or warring with their neighbors and trying to draw lesser Kindred to their banners. So far, any internecine nighttime violence has been passed off by mortals as the side effects of the natural disaster, but this pot could boil over unless some stability is introduced, either by Kindred learning to work in accord, or by one person or group somehow gaining enough power over the others to strong-arm them into compliance.

                  Right now, though, it's virtually every Kindred for themselves; trust is a virtually nonexistent commodity. And there have also been no shortage of whispered reports, flitting from each mini-Domain to the next, of other things in the night sky, on wings of smoke and shadow—either drawn to the disaster like carrion birds or, perhaps, somehow responsible for this event . . .
                  Last edited by Zsander; 03-20-2016, 05:54 PM.


                  "There is the world of light, and the world of darkness. And some in the light prefer the darkness." — Loren Eiseley, The Night Country

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    The After-Plague

                    An invasion happened here some time ago. That worst kind of enemy few are able to fight back. A disease. It spreaded like wildfire through the city, and this inferno of sickness raged for quite some years.

                    For the mortals, it wasn't all that. An uncommon flu, not specially agressive, but the fever had more neurological effects than expected. Patients could be quite mad for some days. But even if the virus attacked the brain (was it really a virus? Maybe a strange bactheria), it didn't caused too much damage. The worst case took two years to heal completely, but all the bursts of madness together would sum less than a month, the worst alone was just five days. Health care professionals are puzzled with the entire thing, but all seems right now.

                    But things didn't went so well for the undead. However it spreaded, did it quickly. Maybe the symptoms where way more agressive, maybe they where quite different. No one really knows. What they DO know is that the city got quarantined by neighboring domains. And a decade now, the place is empty. If anyone still unlives there, it is hiding. The quarantine still remains, but travelers who broke it by necessity already atested to at least some safety. There are no domain, and no lord to do such a claim. Just the fear of whatever happened to keep entrepeneurs away, and the mystery behind the years of the Inverted Plague, the disease that let alive the living and killed the dead.


                    Sorry if I seem too straightforward, or if I don't get you. Autism isn't a forgiving condition.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The Unholy War


                      This city has a history of being deeply religious and slow to embrace the changes of the modern era upon society and rationality. But for the immortal, centuries old blood suckers, that religious fervor is multiplied a dozen times over. The Circle and the Lancea have been at war for years, and while the city does have a presence of Carthians and Invictis, they have wisely chosen to stay the hell away from this fight. Both factions utilize cruel methods of torture and execution on those who they feel threaten their faith. The Lancea Sanctum will quite literally crucify you or roast you to death in a bull made of bronze. The Circle will sacrifice you upon a stone altar, tearing your heart from your chest before diablerizing your vitae! Needless to say, both groups are perfectly willing to justify their barbarism by saying it is the commandment of their gods, which makes them extremely dangerous. A foe who believes they are absolved of sin has no moral compass when it comes to victory.


                      The Circle is largely composed of the immigrant population, their 400 year old Heirophant having cobbled together a version of the Aztec faith which they claim makes perfect sense for a vampire religion given the bloody rituals and sacrifices conducted by the lost civilization. The Lancea Sanctum is largely composed of those born and raised in the city, brought up on American ways and "Christian values." It would be foolish to say there aren't religious members belonging to the other factions in the city, but they lack the zealotry needed to go slaughtering people in the streets at night.


                      But lately things have begun to change. The other factions believe that this war has drawn out long enough. The Carthians believe that warring for religious matters is outdated and foolish, while the elders on the Invictis have seen first hand what zealots can do if you allow their hatred to keep spreading unchecked. Somebody needs to come out the victor of this war, and neither side has the power to accomplish that on their own. They need the backing of one or more of the other factions. But who will they choose, or - more importantly - who will you?
                      Last edited by Nyrufa; 03-13-2016, 03:38 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The First Years of Night

                        For whatever reason - natural disasters, generations of monster hunters, a triumphant parliament of owls - there are no vampires in the region, and haven't been for years. Sure, a corpse occasionally got up hungry and walked, but it would always rot away or be lost in isolation and starvation in a few nights or weeks. The evenings were a little bit safer for everyone in these times, a little bit less anxious. People could afford to spare a kindness to each other after dark.

                        That comes to an end tonight. You were out after dark, and however it happened you died - something killed you. You stayed dead, but you got back up again. You were hungry, but food and drink did nothing. You found someone, or someone found you, an animal or person, and you killed them with strength, speed, or other unnatural abilities you never had before. That made it go away for a little while. You couldn't see yourself in a mirror, or a reflection in the river by moonlight. You couldn't stay awake as the sun began to rise. If you were caught outside you started to burn, and you couldn't help but run.

                        You start to get used to this, if you survive the first few nights. You think you're beginning to understand a little of what happened. That's when you find another like you... or a little like you, at least. They seem to be able to do different things than you do, and they don't have the answers you wanted either. You're both too new at this. The pattern repeats each time, until you strike gold and find someone who seems to have the same curse you do - or something close enough. You think maybe you can figure this out together, maybe you can solve the mystery and do more than survive these accursed and lonely nights!

                        That's when one of you, maybe even you specifically, figures out that the blood of other corpses is the sweetest of all. All trust becomes as dead as you are.


                        Revlid wrote:
                        Yes, hollowing out your humanity to become an utterly utilitarian asura is the exact suggestion I would expect from you, Aiden.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Somewhat similar to Aiden, I'd love to see a domain that uses the Tier 1 versions of the covenants from Danse Macabre; not globe-spanning conspiracies drenched in centuries of history, but rather little more than large coteries of young dead trying to build their philosophies. Bonus points of there are several other gangs that don't neatly line up with the modern covenants.

                          EDIT: I'm also fond of a domain where the factions are drawn along the lines of individual eccentric elders, rather than clan or covenant. Five or six ancient, hungry monsters steering vast conspiracies of hunters, unwitting mortal dupes, and oh-so-disposable young dead (your protagonists, of course) in a long-running shadow war. No Prince holds sway here, instead governed by an uneasy gentleman's agreement to not openly strike against each other or disrupt the herd too much.
                          Last edited by atamajakki; 03-13-2016, 10:15 PM.


                          Remi. she/her. game designer.

                          Comment

                          Working...
                          X