So there are a lot of games out. A downright staggering amount.
There are thousands of games I have never played, and I am assuming another thousand that you, the reader, haven’t played as well.
But that is what I love about the gaming community and the power of the internet. Long lost, forgotten games can be talked about, seen, even played, opening up a whole slew of new and old games to play for gamers!
But with this new series, maybe there are some games I can shed some light on that would otherwise be overlooked.
Here is a game I think you should check out!
Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines for PC.
Vampire the Masquerade Bloodlines was released in 2004, an old game, but definitely a goodie.
I love Vampire the Masquerade. I actually own several of the old, table-top RPG books, plus a few dusty novels written years ago.
I never sat down to play VtM(Vampire the Masquerade) the table-top game, but I remember just reading them all, cover-to-back, multiple times, the same I did with my old Dungeons and Dragons books I got one year from someone who was selling them. I was so fixated on the world that White Wolf had created back then. But that is a story for another time.
Back to VtM:Bloodlines, if the name couldn’t give you an idea on what it is about, the main focal point of the game, as well as the table-top RPG is dark, gothic vampires.
Stay with me here, this was long before Twilight came onto the scene and people’s ideas of vampires were changed forever.
The vampires here don’t sparkle(spoiler, sorry), opting for the long-standing tradition of being harmed by sunlight.
While a stake to the heart won’t kill, it sucks, and will paralyze the vampire until it is removed.
While traditional, there are various things that break said tradition.
Such as a bite from a vampire won’t turn you into one.
Or crying tears of blood. Yep, VtM did that long before the show True Blood did!
One thing that I always enjoyed and was very unique to VtM was the inclusion of “clans.”
Depending on which blood ran through your veins, you would be inducted into a clan, as well as having pretty unique powers, such as shape-shifting, time-manipulation, changing the emotions of those around you or even down-right just killing someone(if they are human, at least), with your vampiric powers.
The game follows the main character you create, who has been turned into a vampire without permission from the Prince(that is essentially the vampire head-honcho of a particular city/area).
Your Sire(the vampire who made you), is sentenced to death, and killed right in front of you.
Thanks to the mercy of said Prince, along with some of the other higher-ups in vampire society, you are let free, but of course, you have to follow the vampire laws.
The Prince has you running around the city, doing jobs and things to carve your path in vampire society.
But, you have to be careful!
In Vampire the Masquerade, the Masquerade refers to keeping the secret of vampire existence a… Well, secret!
So through-out the game, you are forced to watch your actions around most human society, since you can’t let anyone know you are a vampire, so no vampire powers in the middle of town, otherwise you might end up with vampire hunters on your tail, or worse, getting the same fate as your Sire!
I am not going to spoil the rest of the game, as the story is pretty great, with some twists and turns along the way.
The game is played out in a first-person shooter, with the option of going into third person when combat breaks out, or at the push of a button.
This also being a RPG, you can choose your abilities, and as you gain experience, you can spend it to increase your stats and abilities.
There are a lot of skills in this game, so careful management of said skills plays a huge part of the game.
Talking to NPC’s and making connections are vital as well. The game is fully voiced, with some very good voice acting, so it doesn’t become a bore.
The music in this game is fantastic, fitting the mood of the game perfectly.
While it may not be the type of music I listen to, the music really drew me in as I played my vampire character, mingling in society in the shadows, making me feel connected and immersed to the setting of the game.
With multiples way to complete quests, including multiple endings and a total of seven different clans to play as, the replay value is pretty high.
The difficulty is somewhat high, as well, at least to me. Especially end game.
I played a mostly melee character, who about mid-late game started pumping up my gun skills, and it was quite tough.
Despite being an awesome hunter of the night, a couple of shotgun blasts to the face is going to put some serious hurt on you.
Of course, being a PC game, there are a lot of mods out there, many of which fix a ton of bugs and glitches in the game, and some that add to the game in different ways.
There is an amazing patch that has been getting frequent updates even after all of this time, by a user named wesp5. Definitely check that out if you plan on getting the game, it really just helps make the game more stable and plain better.
With the game now on Steam, as well as gog.com, you can pick it up pretty easily for about $20 or so, sometimes less if you can catch it on sale.
If you are into vampires at all, and looking for a dark, gothic RPG, get Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines ASAP.