Ghoul Character Creation

For those of you who are new to Vampire, this is a brief walk-through of character creation for a vampire character. If you are making a mortal, there is a different set of instructions further in the book that can be utilized instead.

Automatic Restrictions

  • All characters MUST be above the age of 18, meaning the child flaw is restricted and cannot be taken.
  • The first characters of all players must be one of the 13 main clans to prove they can handle something rarer.

Step 1: Chose a Concept, Ghoul or Revenant, Nature, and Demeanor

Your character concept includes your physical description, Nature and Demeanor, and the details of who you were before you became a ghoul. Generally speaking, your character will likely be a vassal that has a domitor, a member of a revenant family, or an independent ghoul with a means of obtaining vampiric blood.

It is likely that your character will be a vassal with a dominator, but whether they are an NPC or a player is up to you.

Now you have nature and demeanor. Nature is how the character acts at their core and around others behind closed doors. Demeanor is how they present themselves around everyone else and in public. These should be different unless you have some damn good justification otherwise. Below is the list of available archetypes:

  • Architect — You build something of lasting value.
  • Autocrat — You need control.
  • Bon Vivant — Unlife is for pleasure.
  • Bravo — Might makes right.
  • Capitalist — Why give it away for free when you can sell it?
  • Caregiver — Everyone needs nurturing.
  • Celebrant — Your cause brings you joy.
  • Chameleon — You manage to blend into any situation.
  • Child — Won’t somebody be there for you?
  • Competitor — You must be the best.
  • Conformist — You follow and assist.
  • Conniver — Others exist for your benefit.
  • Creep Show — Disgusting the straights makes you smile.
  • Curmudgeon — Everything has its flaws.
  • Dabbler — It’s always about the next big thing.
  • Deviant — The status quo is for sheep.
  • Director — You oversee what must be done.
  • Enigma — Just when people think they’ve figured you out, you change the game.
  • Eye of the Storm — Chaos and havoc follow you, but it never gets to you.
  • Fanatic — The cause is all that matters.
  • Gallant — You’re not the showstopper: you’re the show!
  • Guru — People find you spiritually compelling.
  • Idealist — You believe in something greater.
  • Judge — Your judgment will improve things.
  • Loner — You make your own way.
  • Martyr — You suffer for the greater good.
  • Masochist — Pain reminds you that you still exist.
  • Monster — You’re Damned, so act like it!
  • Pedagogue — You save others through knowledge.
  • Penitent — Unlife is a curse, and you must atone for it.
  • Perfectionist — You strive for an unattainable goal.
  • Rebel — You follow no one’s rules.
  • Rogue — It’s all about you.
  • Sadist — You live to cause pain.
  • Scientist — Everything is a puzzle to solve.
  • Sociopath — The inferior must be destroyed.
  • Soldier — You follow orders, but in your own way.
  • Survivor — Nothing can keep you down.
  • Thrill-Seeker — The rush is all that matters.
  • Traditionalist — As it has always been, so it must be.
  • Trickster — Laughter dims the pain.
  • Visionary — Something exists beyond all this

Step 2: Select Attributes

Mortals begin play with less raw potential than vampire characters do. A ghoul has fewer dots to divide among her Attributes, as her capabilities are more mundane — at the start. You begin play with one free dot in each Attribute, of course. After prioritizing your Attributes, you may then spend six dots among your primary Attributes, four among your secondary, and three among your tertiary.

Step 3: Select Abilities

After prioritizing Talents, Skills, and Knowledges, you will have 11 dots to spend on your primary Abilities, 7 on the second, and 4 on the third. You may not spend more than three dots in any Ability during this stage of character creation.

Step 4: Disciplines

While there are many Disciplines, ghouls are more limited in their ability to learn and use them. Both revenants and ghouls begin with one dot of Potence. Potence is the only Discipline that is instinctively learned, either after a revenant has been born, or following a ghoul’s third sip of the Blood, regardless of which vampire they’re drinking from.

During character creation, a ghoul may also add one dot in another Discipline. This secondary Discipline should be chosen based on the identity of your family, domitor, or “donor”. In the vast majority of cases, a ghoul’s capacity to learn a Discipline originates from the blood she initially drinks. However, your Discipline choices should make sense for your character. A Sabbat ghoul, for example, may drink from a Lasombra vampire who has high levels of Obtenebration, but that doesn’t mean that ghoul will automatically learn Shadow Play.

  • Vassals: If you are playing a vassal ghoul, you must pick a common Discipline that your domitor uses. You may also check with your Storyteller for guidance, especially if you’ve decided that your ghoul is not sure which Clan your domitor belongs to. In general, however, you would likely choose a dot in one of the more common Disciplines — unless your domitor is a member of the Tremere or Gangrel Clans. Protean and Thaumaturgy are only available to Gangrel and Tremere ghouls, respectively, and at a Storyteller’s discretion.
  • Revenants: If you are playing a revenant, you should select your second Discipline from the traditional Disciplines that are commonly used by your family. Revenant family Disciplines are found in their respective write-ups in Chapter 3 beginning on page 89. However, if you have a vampire as your guide or mentor, you may select an appropriate Discipline at your Storyteller’s discretion.
  • Independents: While independent ghouls may not have a domitor, they do need a donor who is willing to provide them with vampiric blood. Thus, though independent ghouls may not seem to have any restrictions, they are limited to acquiring new Disciplines depending upon who is sustaining their reliance on the Blood. To assess which Discipline makes sense for your character, it is strongly recommended that you select a commonly found Discipline like Celerity or Fortitude. Alternatively, you might choose a specific Discipline, such as Animalism, from a Clan that you’ve been exchanging favors with.

We are also using the revised discipline limits for ghouls, so they are as follows:

Sponsor's Generation Maximum Discipline Level
Thirteenth to Eleventh 1
Tenth or Ninth 2
Eighth or Seventh 3
Sixth or Fifth 4
Fourth 5

Step 5: Backgrounds

You may choose many of the same Backgrounds as a vampire might for your ghoul, but there are some marked exceptions. Your ghoul cannot have a Generation, for example, and has no need of Herd. Additionally, the Mentor Background does not make sense for younger ghouls or revenants to have, as it wouldn’t make sense for those characters. Finally, all ghouls, regardless of age or domitor, cannot hold Status, even though they might earn a vampire’s marginal respect over time.

Like Disciplines, the thing to keep in mind when selecting a Background is that it should make sense for your ghoul or revenant to have. In most cases, for example, your domitor would probably not allow you to have Retainers, but as an independent ghoul you might need them to survive. If you’re not sure what Backgrounds are appropriate, check with your Storyteller to review your options.

Step 6: Virtues

All ghouls and revenants begin with one free dot in each Virtue. Then, you’ll assign five dots to Virtues if you are a Sabbat ghoul or a revenant, and seven if you are not. Though you are technically still mortal, it is assumed that you will begin your chronicle as a ghoul. You may, at your Storyteller’s discretion, alter your Virtues to better fit your character concept.

When you select Virtues, remember that your ghoul or revenant is also influenced by which Path of Enlightenment she follows. Revenants and Sabbat ghouls, typically those who are being groomed for the Embrace, are the only characters that follow a Path. Those who do will likely have trouble navigating the world by day, for these characters will forsake their Humanity. All other ghouls do not, and should distribute their dots among the various Virtues as they see fit.

Some of the revenant families teach their members a Path of Enlightenment as part of their values, especially as that revenant pass beyond a normal mortal lifespan. Though every Sabbat ghoul has the potential to follow a Path, only those who are being groomed for an Embrace would be instructed in such a manner. Even this is quite rare, for as most members of the Sabbat might see it, teaching a mortal a vampire’s philosophy is a waste of time.

If you follow a Path of Enlightenment, you may decide to alter your choices according to the rules found on page 315 of V20. No ghoul or revenant may begin the game with a Path of Enlightenment rating above 5.

Step 7: Finishing Touches

Record Humanity (equal to Conscience + Self-Control) and Willpower (equal to Courage).

Finally spend the 21 freebie points earned as well as any extra experience for how many years they have been a ghoul, or for revenants years over the age of 18. You receive half an experience point for every year a ghoul, or year alive over 18 as a revenant, the maximum extra experienced gained this way without asking a Storyteller would be 50, and age to be under 50 without Storyteller approval. These can be spent via the experience and freebie points table found below as well as on merits. To gain more freebies, feel free to take up to 7 points in flaws, but make sure you are aware of how to correctly roleplay a flaw. If you aren’t sure, don’t take it!

What about Bloodlines?

After you have proven to the Storyteller team that you are able to handle a more exotic character through adequate roleplaying, writing, and general positive activity on the server, you will be allowed to create a character of one of the bloodlines listed below. Each player may only have one of these characters active at a time. Remember this is a privilege, not a right, and we as Storytellers have the authority to revoke use of these characters at any time or refuse them from play outright.

To play a rare bloodline (this includes Antitribu), a player must spend TBD of the 15 freebies they have on a 'rare bloodline' merit and document it onto their sheet. These may not be spent on anything else or refunded by any means, leaving the player with TBD freebies left if they do not take flaws. (Baali and Angellis Ater are not allowed at this time.)
When your sheet is finished please submit your sheet to #character-submission to be reviewed! If you have any questions feel free to ask in #general-lounge.

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