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[2ed Conversion] Melissidae Bloodline

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  • [2ed Conversion] Melissidae Bloodline

    After my reading of the incredible Ventrue, False Gods, by Yossarian, I decided to update my Melissidae using a different approach. I maintained the Hive dependency and the ruthless behavior that the Melissidae usually have, but instead of giving them lots of Devotions, I adopted merits as the exp tax system to allow players access to their incrediple powers.

    Melissidae

    Hush, now you shouldn’t struggle so. This is for your own good.

    In the back of every Melissid’s undead brain, she feels an itch, a chittering, rustling presence: the beginning of a hive-mind. Hungry, it needs to grow, it needs to control, it needs to surround itself with drones and workers, so that it can find comfort. To be alone in her own head fills a Melissid with a sense of panic. This panic drives the Melissadae.
    The Queen Bees don’t just want control, they need it. They have no choice. A few Melissidae, repelled by a realization of what they’ve become, try to escape. For those who have their powers, though, it’s too easy to use them, to give in to temptation. A little push there, a twist here. One thing leads to another, and soon the Kindred finds herself surrounded by slaves. She’s become the slave master.

    Background: No other single criteria affect how the Melissidae select childer. The Queen Bees Embrace whoever they choose, and choose, often, based on nothing more than personal whim. Older Melissidae are almost all females. It’s not that the bloodlines had any prohibitions against Embracing men, however, the Melissidae were naturally drawn to Embrace women, simply because it feels right to them for a Queen to be female. On modern nights, gender roles aren't as well defined as they used to be, so there is a slight increase in the number of male Queens.

    The Becoming: The process of becoming a Queen Bee is automatic, when a melissid Embraces occur, the new kindred slowly start to develop a connection to her sire hive-mind, and after some time, the transformation is complete. Some Lords, facinated by the tales surrounding the power that the Queen Bees had in the distant past, try electing to join the bloodline, some never found an Avus, but those who shall seek, sometimes find what they are looking for. A melissid Avus will gladly accept the new member, even if only to protect the secrecy of the bloodline existence. For them, the personal precedence of the new larvae is important, the transformation of the Ventrue's blood would take care of any questions of attitude.

    In the Danse Macabre: The Melissidae tend not to agree wholeheartedly with any of the five major covenants, but this doesn’t stop them sometimes finding some common cause. Due to their heritage, however, they usually find it best to keep their bloodline hidden. It’s useful for a Melissid to have allies, and quite a reasonable number of Queen Bees have made at least a show of joining one of the covenants, and not always because they respect the covenants’ philosophies. For some, there’s safety in numbers, and that’s all.

    Nickname: Queen Bees
    Clan: Ventrue

    Bloodline Bane (The Autophobic Curse): Melissidae need to be attached to a hive, the buzzing from their drones’ minds keeps them calm and functional, to separate a Queen Bee from her hive is to invite chaos. Any Retainer affected by Hive Induction is considered part of the Hive. If separated from an individual drone of a hive belonging to her or her sire, the Queen Bee rolls humanity each scene, on a fail she gains the Distracted Condition until she is reunited with a member of the hive.
    Bloodline Disciplines: Animalism, Auspex, Dominate, Resilience


    Bloodline Gift: Hivemind

    If there's a reason other Kindred fear this Bloodline is because of this gift. Kine that has tasted the Melissidae blood transform into real drones, too alien to function outside their own bizarre community. Melissidae gain the Hive Induction merit upon joining the bloodline and have access to other Hivemind Merits that can be bought with normal experience points. All members of the Melissidae also develop the Honey Trap merit for free, as their blood acquires a more addictive taste.


    Hivemind Merits

    Hive Induction (◦)
    Effect: A hive is at the core of every Melissidae. Her Beast longs for drones to serve. The kine around a melissid take on a variety of roles under the direction of a Queen Bee, almost as if she carefully cultivated them to serve. Every instance of the Retainer merit that the Queen possesses, can give her a dot of Herd if the player chooses. Those Retainers need to be mortals, and they gain a mind link with the Melissidae that lets them sense each other’s general direction. This link is shattered if a member is more than 100 miles away from the Melissidae. This Herd is not protected by sanctity of merits and should be marked as half dots. All other Hivemind Merits have Hive Induction as a prerequisite.
    Drawback: The mortals of a hive don’t function well outside of it, and once added to the hive, they do not want to leave while alive. A Queen should be very careful when disposing of her drones because they always seem to find a way to reunite with her.

    Hive Cooperation (••• or •••••)
    Prerequisite: Melissidae, Dominate ••, Retainer •+
    Effect: At three dots, Hivemind members eagerly share resources and information with your character. Once per story/month, your drones provide support equal to Resources •••, or Contacts •••. With a stronger link than Hive Induction alone, drones will do virtually anything for your character that doesn’t actively involve harming themselves or others.
    At five dots, your character also does not have to speak to communicate simple ideas and requests to members of her hive anymore, as they understand your thought process and will coordinate in order to help you in their best capabilities, every instance of the Retainer merit that you current possess gets an extra dot, if you already possess a Retainer at five dots, you get refunded as per Sanctity of Merits. Your character can also take an instant action to focus in one drone, learning their current emotional state, relative health, and surface thoughts. This connection works both ways and the drones will have the same awareness pertaining their Queen. Your drones are now wholly devoted, and while they won’t sacrifice their lives, they will accept committing major crimes (including murder) on your character’s behalf if she can provide a reasonable explanation as to why it must happen.

    Hive Link (••)
    Prerequisite: Melissidae, Auspex ••, Retainer •+
    Effect: Once per chapter a Queen Bee can expend a point of Willpower to send a short telepathic signal to one of the members of her Hive. The player summons a Retainer that will arrive within the scene.

    Hive Little Helpers (• or •••)
    Prerequisite: Melissidae, Animalism ••, Safe Place +, Hexapod Dominance
    Effect: The Queen Bee infests the terrain around her with swarms of insects that patrol an area, protecting against any trespassers. This merit must be bound to a Safe Place. At one dot, the swarm will alert the vampire if any trespasser successfully infiltrates in the safe place. The three-dot version of this merit is much deadlier and will also try to attack the intruder, the swarm has 5 dots of health and speed 9, the trespasser can roll Perception penalized by the Safe Place rating to notice the swarm approaching. If the swarm catches up, it causes a point of contusive damage each to turn the intruder remains, as the swarm attacks him relentlessly. Attacks against the swarm only cause a single point of damage per turn, but fire and other instances of damage that can affect areas will cause the swarm to disperse for the rest of the scene. The swarm will not detect supernatural concealment.

    Hive Guards (••)
    Prerequisite: Melissidae, Resilience ••, Retainer •+
    Effect: If your character is in the presence of at least one member of her hive and takes a fatal blow, or one that would send her into torpor, she can choose to have a drone take it for her, suffering all damage she would otherwise suffer, she can activate Resilience and it affects the Drone instead or her.
    Drawback: Such act is a Humanity 5 breaking point for your character, or a Humanity 3 breaking point if your Retainer dies, with a –1 modifier on the detachment rolls for each use of this merit in the same night.



    Other Merits

    Hexapod Dominance (•)
    Prerequisite: Melissidae, Animalism •+
    Effect: Some Queen Bees develop ways of controlling swarms of insects, this merit allows her to ghoul swarms of insects up to her Animalism dots in size and changes the following effects of her Animalism Discipline:
    Feral Whispers: She can communicate with insect swarms and give them commands as if they were a single creature and gains a +2 bonus to do so, but things other than insects require more effort, to call or control other animals, she suffers a -2 penalty. The maximum size for a swarm that she can control is equal the number of successes on the activation of Feral Whispers.
    Raise the Familiar: She can revive a swarm of insects in the same manner as the usual applications of this Discipline, her blood dividing equally amongst the swarm. Conversely, is incredible difficult to raise a single big animal. For swarms, instead of Stamina, use Size to determine duration, for animals, decrease the duration by half, to a minimum of one night. The vampire can also use Undying Familiar on a swarm if she knows that Devotion.

    Honey Trap, Advanced (•)
    Prerequisite: Melissidae, Honey Trap
    Effect: The blood of all Queen Bees is sweet, but some are made of Royal Jelly. All subjects that taste the melissid blood gains the benefits of the Inspired Condition, but they do not gain Beats for resolving the Condition.



    Melissidae Devotions

    Royal Jelly (Dominate •, Resilience •)
    Cost: 1 Willpower and 1+ Vitae (varies)
    A Melissidae is capable of producing a sweet like honey substance called Royal Jelly. They can convert 1 point of Vitae in 1 point of Royal Jelly per Blood Potency. This substance is sweet and unbearably addictive, causing the drinker to suffer a -2 penalty on rolls to avoid Vitae addiction. In addition, the drinker must roll for Vitae addiction for each point of Royal Jelly consumed, with a cumulative penalty, even if taken in the same scene. Thus, the first point requires a roll of Resolve + Composure - 3, the second point a roll of Resolve + Composure - 4, and so on. The Melissid can choose how much of his Vitae is transformed in the process, but they can only store as much Royal Jelly as they have Blood Potency.
    This power costs 1 Experience points.

    Sting (Dominate ••, Animalism •)
    Cost: 1 Vitae
    Dice Pool: Wits + Brawl + Dominate vs Resolve + Blood Potency
    With a brush of her lips, or a kiss or a lick, a Queen Bee stings her victim, causing him to experience a brief epiphany of pain so intense he’s unable to do anything other than writhe and gasp. To activate this power, a Melissid must first be in a position in which she can touch her victim with her mouth. Successful activation of the power causes the victim to be unable to take any action, even to speak or scream.
    Roll Results
    Dramatic Failure: The target proves too resilient to be affected, he is immune from futher attempts for the next three nights.
    Failure: The Melissid fails to sting its target.
    Success: The target is overcome with an intense sensation of pain, he cannot act unless he spend a point of Willpower for a number of turns equal the number of sucess.
    Exceptional Success: No additional effects.
    This power costs 1 Experience points.

    Honeycomb Heart (Animalism ••, Resilience ••)
    Cost: 3 Vitae
    Dice Pool: Strength + Survival + Animalism
    A Melissid can learn how to use her useless lungs and digestive apparatus as a beehive or a wasps’ nest.
    The activation of this power does not require any rollings, just the expenditure of Vitae. After 3 nights, the Melissid develops the beehive inside his body. It can be maintained expending 1 point of Vitae per week. At any time during this period, the Vampire can vomit a swarm on its targets, using the dice pool. It causes the Distracted Condition for a number of turns equal the number of successes. For every turn the victim also receives a point of bashing damage. The Melissid can call the swarm back at any moment, but after 3 uses of the swarm, the colony dies and the Queen Bee needs to use this power again to develop a new colony.
    This power cost 2 Experience point.
    Last edited by Horodrigo; 09-19-2022, 10:27 PM.


    Homebrews:
    Vampire Homebrews
    Mage Legacies: Infernal Ones, Daoine

  • #2
    If I'm reading this right the Bloodline Boon you've given them is they can take a merit, if so I recommend replacing it with the effects of the merit at a level equal to their Blood Potincy, also I would consider removing the once per daysleep and just allowing them to create Royal Jelly equal to Blood Potecy for one Willpower.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Live Bait View Post
      If I'm reading this right the Bloodline Boon you've given them is they can take a merit, if so I recommend replacing it with the effects of the merit at a level equal to their Blood Potincy, also I would consider removing the once per daysleep and just allowing them to create Royal Jelly equal to Blood Potecy for one Willpower.
      Yeah, after thinking a little this helps in high Blood Potency levels. I just didn't removed the daysleep thing cause it was part of the fantasy of having the substance transform slowly.


      Homebrews:
      Vampire Homebrews
      Mage Legacies: Infernal Ones, Daoine

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      • #4
        Fair enough, be aware that as writen staying up all day stops you being able to make Royal Jelly but outside of one Coil of the Dragon not many kindred do that.

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        • #5
          It looks cool, mostly but dont really care for the "Royal Jelly" power taking the place of "They make vampires uncomfortable by being like them only more so"


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          • #6
            Originally posted by Prince of the Night View Post
            It looks cool, mostly but dont really care for the "Royal Jelly" power taking the place of "They make vampires uncomfortable by being like them only more so"
            I tought the same thing. And after have encountered another conversion who uses the Royal Jelly as the gift for this lineage, I thought about changing some things.
            I tried my best to get the old identity the bloodline had on 1st edition now.

            What do you guys think about it now?


            Homebrews:
            Vampire Homebrews
            Mage Legacies: Infernal Ones, Daoine

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