Each session that a character suffers from RP effects from discipline use, the system will randomly pick the mood of your Beast that night, and push roleplay effects on them accordingly.
These effects come in three tiers. The first tier of each is a mild effect, that is intended to be obvious to other characters and to provide players with an opportunity to showcase their character’s less admirable traits, but not to seriously disrupt the character’s life.
The second tier is a more serious effect, that is expected to have some sort of real consequence for the character, as they allow their emotions to get the better of them, and in doing so, likely sabotage their plans or relationships.
The third tier is “please speak to a ref who will work with you to come up with something suitably horrible for you to do”. As a rule of thumb, the least bad outcome, and the one the ref will be hoping to avoid, is frenzy – the character losing themselves in a berserk rage, so that they are only able to be killed or staked.
The ref’s basic question is likely to be “what is the worst or stupidest thing your character could do right now?”. The rule of thumb for these events is that they should be defining mistakes in the character’s life, and carry with them a serious risk of death – the character’s or someone else’s.
These effects do not generally come into play instantly upon power use, but should be played as coming on naturally over the next 10 minutes of play after the power ends, exactly as a normal human might naturally find their emotional state changing as they become hungry over time. (The only exception to this is if the game is due to end shortly, in which case, please engage with the RP effect as fast as practical.)
These RP effects reset at the end of the game session, or whenever a character consumes even a small amount of human or kindred blood.
Note that as part of the rules of the game, it is not possible for characters to leave the venue to feed during Uptime and then return – the only blood available to them during a game session will be in the PCs and NPCs present. Characters could, in theory leave the venue to hunt if they wish, but it is assumed that if they do so, it simply takes them a while to do so safely, and they are unable to return before the end of the session.
This is a very deliberate design choice. Players are strongly encouraged to stay and play through the effects.
There are 4 moods a character’s beast might be in. The links below explain the desired RP effects in slightly more detail, and correspond to the text players will see upon receiving the each effect through discipline use.
In the event that a character reaches a third hunger stage in a single session, and you and the ref really cannot come up with a suitably risky situation for the character to put themselves in then the character should enter frenzy.
In this state, the character becomes a ravening monster, who can only think of feeding, and who will simply attempt to assault those around them, and drink their blood. They will automatically enter Combat, attacking the target chosen for them by the ref.
In this state, they cannot engage any disciplines, but they receive +5 to combat, and do not stop acting unless placed in torpor, or killed, or until they have either been drained enough blood to kill a mortal, or rendered another vampire Critically Injured, and then been able to drain them to the point that the other vampire enters torpor (this will happen if no-one acts to restrain the frenzied vampire after they’ve critically injured another vampire), or have been subdued (placed into torpor by a stake through the heart) or killed.
They may be Critically Injured, and then staked or killed, even thought they do not stop acting (in other words, it would require 2 “rounds” of combat to fully incapacitate them).