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 Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)

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PGM1961
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PostSubject: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Fri Sep 10, 2010 8:57 pm

This is kind of a side topic to Bloodlines, but it's based on Vampire: The Masquerade, so here goes...

I always liked how the mythology of VtM, where all vampires are descended from Caine, fit the source material so well. If you look in the Book of Genesis, it lists how old Adam was when his son Seth was born, and how old he was when he died. Then it does the same for Seth, and all of the sons down to Noah.

Yet when the bible lists Cain and his sons, it makes no mention of their age when the children were born, or how long they lived. Why is this? The standard answer is that Seth's line was favored by God, therefore more emphasis was placed on them. However, it also fits the vampire theory nicely. If Caine is a vampire, what does it matter how old he was when he Embraced his childer? Or when they Embraced their childer? They're all undead, so age is unimportant.

I'm not trying to get all religious here. but I think it's interesting how the World of Darkness creation myth meshes so well with an odd omission in the book of Genesis. Why bother to list how old Cain was when he died, if he's still alive?

Opinions, anyone?
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sat Sep 11, 2010 8:57 am

Quite interesting, PGM. Nice speculation. And that ommited ages in Genesis got me curious. But I think that Caine is actually dead since he was cursed. Well, sort of... Maybe he was a bit too active to notice this little inconvinient fact.
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sat Sep 11, 2010 1:38 pm

The fact that something is ommited in the Old Testament doesn't mean anything, and doesn't hide stuff. You can find many things and associate them with whatever you want (2012, the nazi..). As well as in any Nostradamus writtings Wink You can read it in so manby levels that you'll find whatever you're looking.

White Wolf being an american compagny, it's "normal" to take for real something as present as the Bible, specially when talking about a myth (-> Vampires). And this is why I think Requiem is better. In VTM, they take from real the biblical story, but in Requiem it's up to the gamemaster, they don't force their view and that's just better. Many theories circulate and we don't know which one is "true".
But I do love VTM, I've worked for them for a couple of years, and I know the world quite well.. But something in the global backround is wrong. It's too literal, way to literal, like the bible is an actual historical credible book. I mean, "Antediluvians".. yeah there were floods, there were quite big floods, but the Earth is not 6000 yo. The big flood did not create the gran canyon.

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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sat Sep 11, 2010 3:12 pm

Antidiluvians are 10.000 years old in VTM if i recall correctly O.o
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sat Sep 11, 2010 6:59 pm

I do not know much about VTR, but for now I prefer VTM. I like exactly the thing that bothers you, Claudia. The idea that the vampire myth blends so well with the actual world makes it a lot more interesting and believeble to me than pure fiction version of VTM.
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ThePhilosopher
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sat Sep 11, 2010 8:16 pm

YamiRaziel wrote:
The idea that the vampire myth blends so well with the actual world

Eh, you mean "blends so well with the bible and christian mythology".
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sun Sep 12, 2010 11:02 am

In VTM, they explain antediluvians survived the big flood.
According to this to this Irish dude the Earth was born in the year 4004 BC (26th of october at 9am).

This is his chronology. And I'd bet our pals white wolf stated "VTM is based on the dogma that this is true", which, as most of you know, complete non-sense. VTR is more "realistic" as they are not based on a religion. (Although I did love State of Grace, the VTM book explaining how vampires live their religion, but it's just "wrong", as the game states that only the biblical religion is "right"..)
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sun Sep 12, 2010 12:54 pm

ThePhilosopher wrote:
Eh, you mean "blends so well with the bible and christian mythology".

Nice one, hah
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sun Sep 12, 2010 12:56 pm

http://jubal.westnet.com/hyperdiscordia/law_of_fives.html
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sun Sep 12, 2010 3:18 pm

Celsius wrote:
http://jubal.westnet.com/hyperdiscordia/law_of_fives.html

Where do I apply to be converted? cyclops
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sun Sep 12, 2010 6:08 pm

Well, VtM has Beckett, right? You know, Abel and Cain myth meaning human change from gatherers and hunters to farmers Smile I think VtM leaves all the doors open. And consider VtR emo bull..* Wink
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Mon Sep 13, 2010 6:53 am

Jad.3 wrote:
I think VtM leaves all the doors open. And consider VtR emo bull..* Wink

LOL That's what I thought about VtR when I read through the rulebook: "These vampires all sound emo."

The VtM mythology is just that... mythology. How much of the Book of Nod, and vampire legendry, is actually true depends on the storyteller. Even if the basics are true -- there actually was a Caine, 13 antediluvians, etc. -- that still leaves a lot of room for creativity. Look at the other game systems- Changelings believe that most supernatural creatures, including themselves, sprang from the Dreaming; i.e. the dreams and desires of early humans. And in Mage, the basic premise is that the beliefs of humanity, even though most are not mages, are strong enough to change the world. Perhaps both have some truth, and the fears and beliefs of early man created their own gods and monsters.
Maybe the growing belief in science, and the fading of magical creatures like dragons, changed all of the dragon bones into dinosaur fossils. Smile I'm just giving a hypothetical scenario, here; but my point is that the average vampire doesn't know. It's not a case of either/or; some of vampire legend could be based on fact, just like Robin Hood and King Arthur are probably based on several real historical figures.
Here's my theory about 'Gehenna' and the Final Nights in VtM (if I were running a PnP game):
- The 'Time of Thin Blood' that the Book of Nod warns about has actually happened before. You can't tell me that after a few thousand years, there weren't plenty of thin bloods in the First City, and the Second City, and Carthage, etc. Due to overpopulation, some cataclysm happened that took out most of the higher generations, and solved the problem... for a while. Maybe it was actually the Elders, maybe it was a natural occurrence. (Don't tell me there was no flood- many mythologies have references to big floods, and one has only to look at the recent flooding in Pakistan, which flooded about 1/5 of their country (over 60,000 sq. mi.) to see that a huge flood is quite possible.)
Anyway, each time the vampire population grows too large, some powers-that-be take steps to correct the problem. So 'Gehenna' isn't really the end of the world... just the end of a lot of vampires, and maybe a lot of humans too. With technology shrinking the world, the time between catastrophes gets smaller.

Any thoughts? I'm just bored, and trying to spark debate. I can't play Bloodlines ALL the time, after all. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Mon Sep 13, 2010 9:18 am

Jad.3 wrote:
I think VtM leaves all the doors open.

So, stating "Cain's story is true, there is no other option" is leaving all doors open ? I think you got something wrong Wink
Besides, we're talking on a game based on one hell of a Emo author : Anne Rice. Yes, VTM is mainly inspired by Anne Rice's books. Yep, there were the same as Twilight ; although a bit more monstruous, but still "ooohhhhh Lestat and Armand are soooo hot !" is exactly the same as "ooooohh Edward <3 ohmygaaad".

I do love VtM, but whereas some players just idolatre it as the virgin, I do keep my eyes open. On everything Wink
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Mon Sep 13, 2010 4:33 pm

To pipe in, the only constant on the mythology is Caine Wink

In the clanbooks, nobody can decide the number of first generation, if that's Caine, another set of kindred or simply skipped mystically. The second generation have been listed between three and seven with rare concensus on names. The thirteen clan founders are aspired to in the Book of Nod, the Erciyes fragments and fully supported in modern nights. After all, if suddenly evidence arises that "Oops! We meant 12. 12 founders." which clan is going to be pushed out of the club and be called the bastard line? The usurpers? But there magic is so useful... The Gangrel? They did storm out of the Camarilla towards the end, I'm sure they wouldn't mind... would they?

Over the years the Cainite race has clung to mythological constants which are CONVENIENT. WE are one of the thirteen clans that trace out lineage back to the times before history - we're a purer breed of labrador!

Caine is the founding father of our race! The first murderer!

Except for those Bahari who some speculate Lilith embraced Caine. Of course.

Caine built Enoch! Which was the name of one of his childe... or was the city Umbar and the childe just spreading his lies for favour?

Who remembers the Salubri in these modern nights? The Cappadocians? The Baali are a long forgotton horror story too.

Well... I hear from an ancilla who was told by an elder that Salubri was soul sucking creatures, wicked and deceitful while the Cappadocians were all mad... not mad like the Malkavians, they at least have *insight* the Cappadocians were mad and obsessed with Death... not pleaseant!

Through the dark ages all records were recorded and kept by the church. It's not unfeasible that the nights of modern era are coloured by the still living and active elders of more pious times. Parallels between Judeo-Christian mythology can be drawn between many other cultures, faiths and mythologies. Caine is the popular theory 'flavour of the aeon'.

Even after all that - So what if Caine WAS the father of all Vampires? Where is he now? What is he doing that affects me in these nights? The founder of all vampires could be Ramses II for all it matters to a kindred in the modern nights. Except for a handful of historians and those who see their founding as a kindred as something noble and worthy and seeks to emulate their spoilt idol in their new finding.

As a personal thing, I have all the details of my own WoD takes - common theories, outright lies the kindred believe, hidden truths, ties with the partner gamelines in case a particular player decides to venture into that charming little woods the prince has written "LUPINE TERRITORY DANGER!" all over in crayon on this little pocket map.
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Mon Sep 13, 2010 8:20 pm

The storyteller can change the history if he desires. But officially it's still Caine, son of Adam, then 3 second generations, then 13 third generations.
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Mon Sep 13, 2010 10:14 pm

This all reminds me of a couple of articles I've read, where the Antediluvians get together and talk about what to tell the 'kids', concerning the origins of vampires, flaws, disciplines, and even why vampires don't enjoy sex. Thought you guys might get a laugh out of these, if you haven't seen them already.

The site where I originally found them is no more, but here are a few links:

Antediluvian Humor, flaws, and disciplines: http://www.wovendarkness.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=108&start=10

Antediluvian Sex: http://www.riotamot.com/vampire/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=70&sid=34171706ff75408492c7bd44b7603091

(This site, 'Vampires Suck', is pretty funny, with a comic and a forum. Haven't looked at the forum yet, so I can't say if they're cool or whackos.) Smile

I have them all of these segments in Text Format, but I didn't know if TCI would want me to post them on this site. But I can, if linking to other sites is a no-no.
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Tue Sep 14, 2010 1:14 pm

Hope PGM's happy with the discussion Wink

Claudia wrote:
Cain's story is true, there is no other option)
Who says that? Where? I said Beckett! Smile

As I see it, with Caine and vampires it's like with medieval europeans and Jesus: Most of them believe it's true.
In some clanbooks, some clans claim they come from the second generation, ie. Assamites,... I wouldn't say that something is "official", as WW purposedly messes things up.
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Wed Sep 15, 2010 12:34 am

Jad.3 wrote:
Hope PGM's happy with the discussion Wink

I am! Smile I like hearing (ok, reading) people's opinions on this stuff. Even the ones that disagree with me. Example: I don't like VTR, but I won't belittle those who do like it. It just doesn't agree with my idea of what the WoD should be like.

Jad.3 wrote:
As I see it, with Caine and vampires it's like with medieval europeans and Jesus: Most of them believe it's true.
In some clanbooks, some clans claim they come from the second generation, ie. Assamites,... I wouldn't say that something is "official", as WW purposedly messes things up.

I don't know that most modern vampires would believe the Caine mythology, any more than most young people today believe that Creationism is literal truth. But their elders probably do, even those in the Camarilla, who publicly scoff at the idea of Gehenna. I'll bet that secretly, they're afraid it's really true, and that the younger vampires are speeding them all towards the Final Nights with their indiscriminate Embrace of thin-bloods.

Another thing... is it really the concept of 'Generation' that is making vampires weaker? Or is it the fact that mankind is losing their belief in the supernatural? In the Revised Edition, WW said that Tremere rituals were not as reliable as they once were. Understandable, even though their power is derived from the magic in Kindred vitae; they are still feeling the effects of mankind's belief in science over magic, just not as badly as Mages.

Just thought I'd throw that out there and see if it floats or sinks. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sun Sep 19, 2010 7:55 pm

Jad.3 wrote:

Another thing... is it really the concept of 'Generation' that is making vampires weaker?

Smile

Well, knowing how the embrace goes, it kind of does. Think about it, you die and then are fed some blood. Not a lot, but some. You don't gain their full power. It's just a bit weaker then theirs. Well, unless you're 8th or 14th generation.
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Mon Sep 20, 2010 8:36 am

8 people, i find that you raise in passing intresting points that i am sure could be discussed fruitfully in more detail, and i am sure your little pocket map would make for intresting publication and source material of many an intresting story.
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Mon Sep 20, 2010 12:56 pm

Jad that did not speak agrees with Daimon: A vampire of 6th generation is as strong today as he was in the dark ages. (Even stronger, if he didn't spend too much time in torpor Wink )
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Tue Sep 21, 2010 7:33 pm

Jad.3 wrote:
Jad that did not speak agrees with Daimon: A vampire of 6th generation is as strong today as he was in the dark ages. (Even stronger, if he didn't spend too much time in torpor Wink )

I didn't mean that the existing vampires are getting weaker. (Although, like I said, Thaumaturgy isn't as reliable as it used to be.) My point was: Are high-generation vampires (13+) weaker merely because of the blood growing thin? Or is mankind's growing disbelief in the supernatural speeding this along, and making it harder to be a supernatural creature??

Back to you, caller.
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Tue Sep 21, 2010 8:28 pm

I think it's because the blood is getting weaker the longer it goes on. *Shudders to think of 16th generations* Besides, it could be wormwood.
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Wed Sep 22, 2010 5:25 pm

PGM1961 wrote:

I didn't mean that the existing vampires are getting weaker. (Although, like I said, Thaumaturgy isn't as reliable as it used to be.) My point was: Are high-generation vampires (13+) weaker merely because of the blood growing thin? Or is mankind's growing disbelief in the supernatural speeding this along, and making it harder to be a supernatural creature??

Back to you, caller.

I don't see the point. If vampire were like gods, fueled by belief, it would affect them all in the same way.
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PostSubject: Re: Mythology of VtM (NOT VtR!!!)   Sat Oct 02, 2010 10:25 pm

Personally, I like the huge background story that comes with VtM. I like discovering and reading up on the mythos. And I don't have an issue with it being saying that the Bible is true within it's own mythos. That said, I also like VtR and it's open-ended setting. To me, both of them have the advantages and disadvantages.

And there's not a law stopping anyone from tweaking the VtM setting to suit your own personal tastes. Just my two cents.
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