Riverside Opera uses Laws of the Night, Revised Edition. Archetypes and Merits/Flaws may be taken from the Camarilla Guide. Dark Epics is used for Weapons and Armor. Other source books will not come into play unless otherwise stated. Items that are not in the above books, but can be perked into, will have the source book and page number next to them for ease of access.
Players may, at their discretion, take a Derangement instead of lowering their Humanity for two Free Traits at character creation. Players may not do both.
Intermediate Disciplines cost 3 Free Traits per level at Character Creation. Advanced Disciplines may not be purchased with Free Traits.
As an entirely optional step in character creation, you may provide some more information about your character: Filling out a Character Survey, submitting your character for ties to Pregenerated characters, submitting rumors about your character, and completing a Wiki page for your character on the Riverside Opera Wiki Project. Completing each one of these will provide your character with 2 non-transferable experience, up to a total of 8 XP total.
Everyone likes to play strange, interesting or powerful characters. However, in the name of game balance, that isn’t always possible. In fact, in the name of game balance, the Storyteller might ask you to retire your character or use them in some dramatic fashion for the story. Characters might even die as a natural progression, no matter how powerful they are. To facilitate all of these realities, Riverside Opera employs a Perk system to incentivize players to both continue playing their current characters and move on to new ones when the time is right.
Players stop playing characters for many reasons. Luckily, in Riverside Opera, players do not lose all of their hard earned experience when they do so. If your character is removed from play, you may spend all of the experience you earned while playing that character on any number of the Perks listed below. You may buy as many Perks as you can afford.
Half of whatever experience you have left over will be then transferred to your new character, unless the Storyteller asked you to retire the character or killed your character for plot. (Note: If your character dies as the result of your actions or the actions of another player, you still only get half of your remaining experience.)
For example, David has been playing in the LARP for four games, and his Toreador has been racking up the experience. However, David really wants to play a Ravnos, and since he has earned 26 experience in total on his character, he finally has enough to purchase that perk. He hands his character sheet to the Storyteller, cashes in 20 experience for the Perk, and then receives 3 experience to apply to his new character.
It is important to note, however, that even if a Perk allows you access to a particular thing, you must still purchase that thing. For instance, the 10-point Perk “Start at 8th Generation” still requires that you spend five points on the Generation Background. Unless the Perk explicitly states otherwise, these purchases may be made with Free Traits rather than Experience.
Lastly, all Perks are purchased at Storyteller discretion. The Storyteller may want you to come up with a good justification why your 6th Generation Kiasyd who is Unbondable and follows the Path of Cathari has decided to come to Memphis before he clears that character for play. Paths of Enlightenment will be particularly carefully distributed, as they can be difficult to play.
Free to Play
- Play a character who belongs to one of the following Clans or Bloodlines: Assamites, Brujah, Caitiff, Followers of Set, Gangrel, Giovanni, Nosferatu, Ravnos, or Toreador.
- Create a falsified backstory that is verified by a figure of authority and stands up to low-level scrutiny.
- Play a character who belongs to one of the following Clans or Bloodlines: Samedi, Tremere (either Cam-loyal or House Pirelli), or Ventrue.
- Purchase the Merit: Adopted (see below).
- Purchase the Merit: Hidden Diablerie (see below).
- Purchase the Merit: Intuitive Design (see below).
- Purchase the Merit: Iron Will.
- Purchase the Merit: Natural Engineer (see below).
- Purchase the Merit: Ritualist (see below).
- Purchase the Merit: Unbondable.
- Purchase up to three Prestige, Status, or Reputation at character creation, which must be purchased with XP. This Perk may be purchased once if buying Prestige, up to twice if buying Status, and up to three times if purchasing Reputation.
- Start at 8th Generation
- Start on one of these Paths of Enlightenment: Path of Bones, Path of Death and the Soul (Sabbat Guide P. 81), Path of Honorable Accord (Sabbat Guide P. 88), or Path of Power and the Inner Voice (Sabbat Guide P. 93).
- Start with a non-standard Thaumaturgy Path (If you have Thau in-clan or have purchased the perk to buy it out of clan.).
- Start with a single Advanced Discipline, which must be purchased with experience.
- Start with out-of-Clan Animalism, Auspex, Chimerstry, Dominate, Necromancy, Obfuscate, Presence, Protean, Quietus, or Serpentis.
- Play a character who belongs to one of the following Clans or Bloodlines: Assamite viziers, Malkavian, Old Clan Tzimisce (Lore Only: V20 P. 439), Phuri Dae Ravnos, Salubri, Daughters of Cacophony, or Children of Osiris (Lore only: V20 P. 420 Bardo Rules can be found in our House Rules).
- Start on one of these Paths of Enlightenment: Path of Cathari (Sabbat Guide P. 78), Path of the Feral Heart (Sabbat Guide P. 86), Path of Lilith (Sabbat Guide P. 90), or Path of Caine (Sabbat Guide P 76)
- Start with out-of-Clan Dementation, Mytherceria (Sabbat Guide P. 112), Obeah, Obtenebration, Temporis (ST Guide P. 31), Thaumaturgy, or Valeren (Sabbat Guide, P. 133).
- Play one of the following Clans or Bloodlines: Gargoyles (Camarilla Guide P. 35), Kiasyd (Sabbat Guide P. 40), Lasombra antitribu, Nagaraja, True Brujah (ST Guide P. 20), and Wu Zao.
- Purchase the Merit: True Faith.
- Start on the Path of Typhon if you are not one of the Followers of Set.
The things listed here are banned unless the Storyteller asks you explicitly to play them. Please note that this list is not comprehensive, and some things that are not listed here may, in fact, be banned. If in doubt, ask the Storyteller.
- Any Path of Thaumaturgy or Necromancy that are not mentioned explicitly in our Thaumaturgy or Necromancy documents.
- Post Advanced Disciplines.
- The following Clans and Bloodlines: Ahrimanes, Anda, Angellis Ater, Any Dark Ages Bloodline or Clan, Baali, Blood Brothers, Cappadocian, City Gangrel, Country Gangrel, Daitya, Gangrel Mariners, Harbingers of Skulls, Lamia, Lasombra, Malkavian antitribu, Nicktuku, Nosferatu antitribu, Panders, Ravnos antitribu, Salubri antitribu, Serpents of the Light, Telyavic Tremere, Tlacique, Toreador antitribu, Tremere antitribu, Tzimisce, and Ventrue antitribu.
- The following Disciplines: Any Clan- or Bloodline-specific Discipline for any banned Bloodline or Discipline that is not explicitly granted by your Clan or Bloodline; Assamite Sorcery, Koldunic Sorcery, and Setite Sorcery.
- The following Merits and Flaws: Fourteenth Generation, Child, Spirit Mentor, Haunted, Dark Fate, Amnesia.
- The following Paths of Enlightenment: Path of Night, Path of Paradox (even if you’re playing a Ravnos), and Path of Blood if you’re not an Assamite.
- Visceratika and Flight, if you’re not playing a Gargoyle.
- Adopted (2 Trait Merit) – Your character was adopted into another Clan at some point in their past. Socially, they belong to their adoptive Clan, and they are accepted by them as such. They do not gain the Clan Advantage, Weakness, or Disciplines, but they may bargain for education in Disciplines during play. (This Merit requires a Perk.)
- Danger Sense (2 Trait Merit) – You cannot be surprised. This Merit does not allow you to respond to Mental or Social Challenges outside of combat with Physical ones; it only protects you against surprise in combat or at the initiation of combat.
- Hidden Diablerie (5 Trait Merit) – The tell-tale black streaks of diablerie do not manifest in your aura. Other ways of detecting diablerie remain unaffected. (This Merit requires a Perk.)
- Ritualist (3 Trait Merit) – Through years of study and careful precision, you have learned how to expedite the casting of Rituals. As such, you may begin play during each game session with 30 additional minutes of Rituals prepared. (This Merit requires a Perk.)
- Natural Engineer (2 Trait Merit) – You gain 2 Bonus Traits on all Build Challenges. (This Merit requires a Perk.)
- Intuitive Design (2 Trait Merit) – You gain 2 Bonus Traits on all Blueprinting Challenges. (This Merit requires a Perk.)
- Bard’s Tongue (3 Trait Flaw) – You speak the truth, uncannily so. Things you say tend to be true and sometimes you say things that come First, you cannot lie. This is not an effect that can be overruled by any conscious or unconscious control. Additionally, at least once per game session, the Storyteller will share an uncomfortable truth with you regarding any current situation, and it will fall out through your lips immediately. To avoid speaking prophecy or telling the truth when asked a direct question, you must expend a Willpower and take one Lethal Health Level of damage from the strain of resisting as you bite a hole in your tongue. While this Flaw prevents your character from lying, it does not prevent you from dancing around the truth or telling half-truths, so long as you’re creative.
- Disgrace to the Blood (3 Trait Flaw) – Your sire regards the fact that he Embraced you to be a titanic mistake and has let everyone know it. You are mocked at gatherings, taunted by your peers, and actively despised by the one who should be giving you guidance. Any request or petition you make is likely to be looked down upon by friends of your sire, and your achievements are likely to be discounted.
- Hatred (3 Trait Flaw) – There is something out there which you absolutely loathe and will do anything to destroy when you encounter it. You must spend a Self-Control or Instinct card to resist going after the thing you hate when you are presented with the opportunity to do so. Hatreds are subject to approval by the Storyteller and are generally groups or organizations and are never individuals or unique items.
- Vulnerability to Silver (2 Trait Flaw) – To you, silver is as painful and as deadly as the rays of the sun. You suffer aggravated wounds from any silver weapons (bullets, knives, etc.), and the mere touch of silver objects discomfits you.