Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 will explore how the living and the undead interact in a world threatened by a climate crisis, and how its romance system does things a little differently, as revealed in an interview with USGamer.net.
Senior narrative designer Cara Ellison shed a little light on the relationships between vampires and humans in Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2, stating that it isn’t a question of predator and prey. ‘I often think about how Bloodlines presents vampires as being like, “We want them [humans] to actually 100% be on our side, because we want them to feel good,”’ Ellison explained. ‘Even though they're manipulative and narcissistic, vampires definitely don't want to be discovered and they don't want to ruffle that social fabric of human beings.’
In fact, humans are exceedingly powerful in the Bloodlines canon, compared to other stories about vampires and humans. ‘For vampires, they want to live forever, but humans are destroying the world. Humans are creating climate change. The world is going to burn up at some point and vampires live forever,’ she said. ‘How do your values change when you're immortal? How do your values make you reflect on what it means to live forever? Those things are a politic, and politics are at the center of our game.’
Ellison demonstrated that, though Bloodlines 2 will receive a lick of paint when it comes to its art style and creative direction, the sequel will continue the dark and sombre themes of its predecessors. ‘That was very unusual for games because usually the lore is like you can solve this because you're a hero and everyone's a hero in our world,’ she stated. ‘You're very powerful. You'll just solve it and move on. Sometimes things aren't solvable.’
‘So sometimes that's quite sexy. The ability to accept that things are bad, and we should all just be bad,’ she concluded. And, regarding the sexy stuff, wooing the wayward types haunting the alleyways and bars of Seattle will be a little different to what players expect from romance systems in games. ‘Dragon Age was very much like, if you feed this person a number of gifts, they're going to sleep with you. Bloodlines was like, even if you give them everything they want, they might not ever give it to you,’ Ellison said. ‘Even the idea that someone might treat you in this kind of charismatic way and never give you what you want is very realistic and interesting. People don't really work that way.’
The realism of Bloodlines is the golden ticket that ensures that players are invested and independent within a sinister world populated and driven by supernatural forces. ‘It's sexy because we accept that there is a darkness in people. We accept these darknesses. We accept that they are there,’ she explained further. ‘Now, how do we undermine them? How do we do something about that? How do you work in a world in which things are not okay? And also, how do we make those things extremely gay? I like to make things gayer than they actually are.’
Roger that. At Gamescom, an extended pre-alpha demo of Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 was shown, which illuminated how combat, environments and Thinblood abilities will work in the new game. The character threw awesome shapes on the dance floor, and some of those shapes have no human name, that’s for sure.
Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 will launch for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC in 2020.