Devotions

Then Lilith commanded that I stop, saying that I had overreached my bounds
That I had gone too far
That I threatened my very essence.
She used her powers and commanded me to stop.
Because of her power, I heeded her, but deep within me a seed was planted a seed of rebellion
and when she turned her face from me, I opened myself up once more, to the Night

—The Book of Nod

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The rote Disciplines that are common to all Kindred are not the only supernatural capabilities at their disposal. Every so often, an entirely new Discipline “technique” emerges from the ranks of the undead. Like standard Disciplines, these techniques—called Devotions—can be learned from or taught to other Kindred in much the same time frame and manner as the broader powers from which they originate. Any vampire with the appropriate prerequisite Discipline dots can, in theory, develop the Devotions for which he qualifies. It’s simply a matter of time and effort.

Some claim to have truly secret Devotions, however, and the claim does have some basis in truth. Kindred may find themselves incapable of developing some of the more esoteric techniques without a learned mentor at their side. Indeed, not all Kindred have even heard of Devotions. By their nature, they are rarer than the common Disciplines are, and knowledge of them is more fleeting than the understanding of the unique Disciplines that sometimes accompany the creation of new bloodlines. Few young Kindred possess Devotions, and fewer still have been wise enough to create their own. Kindred may learn of them through a “secret knowledge” a sire wishes to pass on to them, the (re)payment of a prestation debt, the confidences of a mentor, stolen wisdom in the hands of rebellious vampires, or by any other manner in which they come up in a story.

Although any Kindred can potentially learn any Devotion as long as she has the Discipline prerequisites, some measure of “creator’s pride” exists pertaining to each, depending upon who claims to have developed the power first. Most of the Devotions stemming from and involving the Protean Discipline are known as Gangrel Devotions, for example, while those involving Theban Sorcery are referred to as Lancea et Sanctum Devotions.

GM’s Note: This page contains (well, at this point, may eventually contain) Devotions from 2nd edition I’ve decided to tweak, Devotions from 1st edition that weren’t converted to 2e rules, Devotions from Vampire: The Masquerade that I’ve converted to Requiem’s ruleset, and a few Devotions of my own personal creation.
Devotions are not something unique to this game, they are a standard option in the core rulebook. That said, to have heard of Devotions, a character requires either Occult • or to have interacted in-game with another Kindred who revealed their existence.
To independently purchase a Devotion (that is, for a character to develop it completely on their own), characters must have a number of Occult dots equal to the combined dots of all the Devotion’s prerequisite Disciplines (for example, to independently develop a Devotion with Auspex 2 and Dominate 1 as the prerequisites takes Occult 3). This requirement can be bypassed by learning the Devotion from another Kindred who already knows it (or has at least heard of it). Players of PCs who want to purchase a Devotion but don’t meet its Occult prerequisites are encouraged to either put down “learn Devotion X” as an Aspiration, or to simply use Setups to have learned it from another Kindred tutor.


Devotion Name Prerequisites Experience Cost Effect
Arcane Sight Auspex ••, Blood Sorcery • 1 You can use Auspex to ask questions about magic.
Conditioning Dominate •••• 2 You can turn victims you’ve Dominated into permanent slaves.
Command from Afar Auspex ••••; Dominate •• or Majesty •• 3 You can issue telepathic orders to victims under your thrall from over any distance.
Eyes of a Thousand Shades Auspex •, Blood Sorcery (Necromancy) ••• 2 You can see through the eyes of nearby ghosts.
Familiar Face Obfuscate •••• 1 You can assume a single visage for 1 Vitae instead of 2 Vitae.
Honeyed Words Auspex ••, Majesty • 2 You always know the wrong thing to avoid saying during conversations.
Iron Facade Obfuscate •, Resilience •• 1 You can appear invulnerable to harm.
Measure the Will Auspex ••, Dominate • 1 You can use Auspex to ask questions about a target’s mental capabilities.
Pulse of Undeath Auspex • and Celerity •, Resilience •, or Vigor • 1 You can use Auspex to ask questions about a target’s physical capabilities.
Scourge of Alecto Celerity •, Majesty ••• 2 You can make other people suffer frenzies in your place.
Second Face Obfuscate •••• 2 You can assume a single visage for 0 Vitae instead of 2 Vitae.
The Forgetful Mind Dominate •• 1 You can alter a larger swath of victims’ memories.
Whispers in the Dark Dominate •, Obfuscate ••• 2 You can use Dominate on victims without them noticing.


Arcane Sight (Auspex ••, Blood Sorcery •)


Those who know this Devotion have learned how to expand their mystical sight by incorporating rudiments of blood magic. Kindred with this power can use their Auspex to scrutinize the auras of objects, as well as people, and may glean information from the eddies of power that whorl through the world.

Cost: As Uncanny Perception/The Spirit’s Touch
Dice Pool: As Uncanny Perception/The Spirit’s Touch
Action: As Uncanny Perception/The Spirit’s Touch

Arcane Sight increases the effects of Uncanny Perception and The Spirit’s Touch. The vampire can now sense the ebb and flow of magical power around the person or object, allowing her to ask questions about any magic currently affecting the subject. Magic from sources besides Blood Sorcery, such as a werewolf’s Rites or an Awakened mage’s True Magick, are unaffected by this power.

Sample Questions

• Does an object (or person) have any magic of its own?
• How strong is the magic?
• Is the object or person currently under enchantment?
• Does the magic come from the object or creature directly or from an external source?
• What Themes are involved in the magic?
• What type of Blood Sorcery is affecting the object or creature? (i.e., Crúac, Necromancy, Thaumaturgy, etc.)

This Devotion costs 1 Experience to learn.


Command from Afar (Auspex ••••; Dominate •• or Majesty ••)


This power has lost much of its former value since the advent of the cellphone, but many Kindred still swear by it for its impeccable security. By combining the mental pull of Dominate or Majesty with the communicative benefits of Lay Open the Mind, the vampire can give complicated instructions over nearly any distance to any individual who is under her thrall.

Cost: 1 Vitae
Requirement: The victim must currently be under the Blood Bound (any stage), Charmed, Dominated, Mesmerized, or Subservient Conditions to the vampire.
Dice Pool: (Presence or Wits) + variable Social Skill (depending on the message sent) + (Auspex, Dominate, or Majesty)
Action: None

Roll Results

Dramatic Failure: The vampire communicates her message to the nearest hostile target.

Failure: The vampire cannot mentally reach the target they want to contact.

Success: The vampire can communicate a single sentence to an individual over any distance, so long as it is night where both of them are. The target intuitively knows whom the mental message comes from. The target is under no particular compulsion to obey, beyond any the compulsion normally attached to the blood bond.

Exceptional Success: The vampire can communicate one sentence per Auspex, Dominate, or Majesty dot.


Conditioning (Dominate ••••)


Over a period of weeks, the vampire pushes on her victim’s will, forcing him to repeat the same tasks over and over until he cannot resist her voice. She slowly builds up control over her victim to the point where he can barely manifest his own thoughts or feelings. Instead he’s an empty shell, waiting for his mistress’ next command. Many Kindred use this Devotion to maintain large stables of servants it would be otherwise costly to ghoul.

Cost: None
Dice Pool: Presence + (Intimidation, Persuasion, or Subterfuge) + Dominate vs. Resolve + Blood Potency
Action: Extended. Each roll takes an instant action and can be made once every two nights.

Roll Results

Dramatic Failure: The victim reasserts his will in a dramatic fashion. He resolves the Mesmerized Condition; he keeps the bonus to resist further Mesmerize attempts for the next week.

Failure: The vampire cannot get her victim to repeat exactly the same tasks for now.

Success: The victim’s will bends before the vampire. He gains the Subservient Condition. Once the vampire accumulates successes equal to the victim’s (5 + double victim’s Willpower), the victim exchanges the Subservient Condition for the Enthralled Condition. If the Subservient Condition is allowed to fade naturally, the vampire loses all accumulated successes.

Exceptional Success: The victim’s will bends like grass before the storm of the vampire’s commands. Mark an extra cross when applying the Subservient Condition.

This Devotion costs 2 Experiences to learn.

Subservient
A vampire has pressed down on your will, and you find it hard to resist doing what she wants even when she doesn’t use her supernatural powers of command. She can give you commands as though you were Mesmerized even when you do not have that Condition. You can spend a Willpower point to resist her commands, but she can just Mesmerize you and order you that way. She still needs to use Dominate to alter your memory. This Condition fades naturally after a week unless the vampire applies it to you again during that time.
Possible Sources: The Dominate Discipline.
Resolution: Take more lethal damage than you have Stamina when following the vampire’s command. Experience a breaking point when following the command and succeed at the roll.
Beat: The vampire makes you do something that you wouldn’t normally do.

Enslaved
You’re totally in thrall to the vampire who inflicted this Condition. You can no longer tell when her instructions end and commands issued by Dominate begin. She tells you to do something and you do it. She tells you what you remember, and you remember it. This Condition counts as the Mesmerized Condition for the purpose of the Dominate Discipline. She doesn’t have to look at you to issue a command as long as you can hear her voice. You do not apply your Resolve as a penalty to the vampire’s dice pool for Entombed Command and Possession. Other vampires who attempt to Dominate you must succeed on a Clash of Wills against the vampire who inflicted this Condition.
Possible Sources: The Dominate Discipline.
Resolution: Kill the vampire who controls you. Undo her mental control by supernatural means.
Beat: You’re made to do something that you wouldn’t normally do.


Eyes of a Thousand Shades (Auspex •, Blood Sorcery (Necromancy) •••)


While not everyone who has died went on to become a ghost, the dead are legion. They stand in a necromancer’s room while he sleeps, and walk the halls when he works late. This power allows the vampire to harness the ghosts in a given area to act as a kind of phantom clairvoyance. Some younger Sangiovanni refer to this power as “spook surveillance.”

Cost: 1 Vitae
Requirement: The ghosts must be enslaved to the vampire through Necromancy. Free-willed ghosts cannot have their senses puppeteered in this manner.
Dice Pool: Wits + (Investigation or Occult) + Auspex
Action: None
Duration: Scene

Dramatic Failure: The vampire peers too closely into the realms of the dead and sees something horrible. He takes the Shaken or Spooked Condition.

Failure: The area’s ghosts are too demented, wrathful, or self-absorbed for the vampire to perceive anything of use through their eyes.

Success: The vampire can see through the eyes of all the ghosts within a single large building or equivalent space. He can flip from one ghost’s perception to another’s as a reflexive action. However, the ghost’s vision is filmy, colored by the sudario. The detritus of memory is strewn about, and can cause confusion or obscure fine details of the living world. This imposes -3 on Perception rolls.

Exceptional Success: The vampire can see through the area’s ghosts with perfect clarity. He takes no penalty on Perception rolls.

This Devotion costs 2 Experiences to learn.


Familiar Face (Obfuscate ••••)


Kindred trained in this Devotion refine The Familiar Stranger and find it less costly to assume a single familiar form.

Cost: 1 Vitae
Dice Pool: As The Familiar Stranger
Action: As The Familiar Stranger

Choose a single visage. This can be a subjective face like “a frail old woman” or a “young lothario,” or a specific person, like “Tom’s friend Jason.” That visage now costs 1 Vitae instead of 2 Vitae to assume with The Familiar Stranger.

This Devotion costs 1 Experience to learn. Unlike most Devotions, characters can purchase this Devotion multiple times for different visages.


Honeyed Words (Auspex ••; Majesty •)


Kindred are preternaturally skillful at telling their listeners what they want to hear. So skillful, in fact, that a vampire sometimes doesn’t even need to know what he’s talking about. This power assures the vampire that, no matter what words tumble out of his mouth, they are always the perfect response (or at least not the wrong one).

Cost: 1 Vitae
Dice Pool: (Manipulation or Wits) + (Empathy or Socialize) + (Auspex or Majesty) vs. Composure + Blood Potency
Action: None
Duration: Scene or until expended (see below)

Roll Results

Dramatic Failure: The vampire takes the Misinformed Condition and believes she can win over the target by saying something they actually find offensive.

Failure: The vampire can’t get a bead on the right things to say to the target.

Success: The Storyteller (or player if this power is used against another player’s character) must advise the vampire’s player if she has typed anything that might offend, confuse, or worry the target, allowing her to retcon her response. Once the Storyteller has given a number of warnings equal to the character’s Auspex or Majesty dots, this power is expended.

bq). GM’s Note: The tabletop version of this Devotion has the Storyteller advise the player if she’s “in danger” of saying anything wrong. Obviously, that’s less tenable over the gaming format we use.

Exceptional Success: The Storyteller must give the player an unlimited number of warnings for the remainder of the scene.

This Devotion costs 2 Experiences to learn.


Iron Facade (Obfuscate •, Resilience ••)


Sometimes intimidation is a vampire’s best weapon, particularly when facing an opponent who is unaware of the Kindred’s true ability. Through the use of this power, the vampire appears to shrug off even the mightiest of blows, to ignore wounds that should cripple even one of the undead. Kindred with this power have been known to rout far more capable foes, for the enemy truly believed that such vampires were invulnerable. Kindred facing more informed adversaries may not use this power to appear indestructible, but to simply appear uninjured (when they actually are) or to have higher levels of Resilience than they actually do.

Cost: 1 Vitae
Dice Pool: (Composure, Manipulation, or Stamina) + Subterfuge + (Obfuscate or Resilience)
Action: Instant
Duration: Scene

Roll Results

Dramatic Failure: The vampire fools himself and takes the Misinformed Condition. He doesn’t believe he is uninjured (if he isn’t), but he can’t tell when anything else hurts him. The Storyteller should secretly track any additional damage the vampire takes and reveal it at the end of the scene.

Failure: The vampire is unable to hide the full extent of his injuries.

Success: The vampire can hide the full extent of his injuries. Wounds are invisible and he does not appear to slow down, limp or grow weary. He seems to function at full capability, regardless of how badly injured he actually is. This negates any penalties to Social rolls from his wounded appearance and grants a bonus on Intimidation rolls against characters who injure him, equal to the total amount of damage they would inflict (before factoring in Resilience) during the scene, to a maximum of +5. Iron Façade does not actually heal wounds but simply appears to do so, making it impossible for any observers to determine the character’s true condition. A vampire with Auspex might be able to see through this power with a Clash of Wills.

Exceptional Success: The vampire is mentally reinvigorated by his enemies’ fear. He regains a point of Willpower from the first Intimidation roll he succeeds on.

This Devotion costs 1 Experience to learn.


Measure the Will (Auspex ••, Dominate •)


A vampire with this power may gauge the strength of a target’s resolve and identity, often as an exploratory prelude to shattering and reshaping that mind.

Cost: As Uncanny Perception
Dice Pool: As Uncanny Perception
Action: As Uncanny Perception

Measure the Will increases the effects of Uncanny Perception. The vampire can now ask questions about a target’s mental-related traits and capabilities.

Sample Questions

• How many dots does the target have in Intelligence, Wits, or Resolve?
• How many dots does the target have in a Mental Skill?
• Does the target have a debilitating Mental Condition like Fugue?
• How many dots does the target have in a purely “mental” Discipline like Auspex or Obfuscate?
• What is the target’s Willpower?
• What is the target’s Humanity or Path score?
• Does the target have any Merits useful in a mental confrontation?

This Devotion costs 1 Experience to learn.


Pulse of Undeath (Auspex • and Celerity •, Resilience •, or Vigor •)


Canny vampires with this power can go into fights forewarned about their opponents’ capabilities. The vampire can intuitively sense how strong an opponent is and which, if any, physical Disciplines another vampire possesses.

Cost: As Beast’s Hackles
Dice Pool: Wits + (Athletics, Brawl, or Empathy) + Auspex
Action: As Beast’s Hackles

Pulse of Undeath increases the effects of Beast’s Hackles. The vampire can now ask questions about a target’s physical and combat-related capabilities.

Sample Questions

• What is the target’s total Strength, Dexterity or Stamina score (including dots in physical Disciplines)?
• How many dots does the target have in Celerity, Resilience, or Vigor?
• How many dots does the target have in Athletics, Brawl, Firearms, or Weaponry?
• Does the target have a debilitating physical Condition like Disabled?
• What is the target’s Blood Potency?
• Is the target wearing armor?
• Does the target have any Merits useful in a physical confrontation?

This Devotion costs 1 Experience to learn.


Scourge of Alecto (Celerity •, Majesty •••)


An obscure power often found among older Brujah, Scourge of Alecto allows the vampire to chain his own Beast and then, through an act of supreme will, unleash it within the body of someone else nearby. Doing so does not alter the vampire’s own propensity for frenzy, but it can inflict both damage and frenzies upon his enemies.

Cost: 2 Vitae
Requirement: The vampire must have just failed a Resolve + Composure roll or spent Willpower to avoid frenzy.
Dice Pool: Presence + Intimidation + (Celerity or Majesty) vs. Stamina + Blood Potency
Action: Reflexive

Dramatic Failure: The vampire turns her Beast back on herself. She immediately frenzies, even if she had spent Willpower to avoid doing so, and takes an amount of bashing damage equal to her Blood Potency.

Failure: The vampire’s Beast is too savage to be forced onto someone else. She must deal with the consequences of her own frenzy.

Success: The vampire releases her Beast in someone else’s body. She suffers no frenzy and the victim takes 1 point of bashing damage per dot of the vampire’s Blood Potency. If the victim is someone normally susceptible to frenzy (such as another vampire or a werewolf), he must immediately roll Resolve + Composure to resist frenzy at a penalty equal to the vampire’s Blood Potency.

Exceptional Success: The vampire’s release of her Beast is a cathartic experience. She takes the Sated Condition. The victim treats a failed frenzy roll as a dramatic failure.

This Devotion costs 2 Experiences to learn.


Second Face (Obfuscate ••••)


Kindred trained in this Devotion refine The Familiar Stranger and find it effortless to assume a single familiar form.

Cost: 0 Vitae
Dice Pool: As The Familiar Stranger
Action: As The Familiar Stranger

Choose a single visage. This can be a subjective face like “a frail old woman” or a “young lothario,” or a specific person, like “Tom’s friend Jason.” That visage now costs 0 Vitae instead of 2 Vitae to assume with The Familiar Stranger.

This Devotion costs 2 Experiences to learn. Unlike most Devotions, characters can purchase this Devotion multiple times for different visages.


The Forgetful Mind (Dominate ••)


Kindred trained in this Devotion can reshape larger swaths of their victim’s memories.

Cost: 0 Vitae
Dice Pool: As Mesmerize
Action: As Mesmerize

The Forgetful Mind increases the effects of Mesmerize. On a success, the vampire can alter any of the victim’s memories within the current night. On an exceptional success, the vampire can alter any of the victim’s memories within the past three nights.

As part of this alteration, she inflicts a persistent Condition on the victim. If she deletes a broad swath of memories, the victim receives the Amnesia Condition, otherwise he takes the False Memories Condition.

This Devotion costs 1 Experience to learn.


Whispers in the Dark (Dominate •, Obfuscate •••)


Cost: As Dominate
Dice Pool: As Dominate
Action: As Dominate

This subtle power allows a vampire rendered invisible with Obfuscate to use Dominate on a victim without automatically revealing her presence to him (though Auspex and other means to pierce Obfuscate still function normally). The victim stands obliviously while the formless vampire whispers her desires to him.

The Devotion costs 2 Experiences to learn.

Devotions

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