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Dev Diary #10: Developing Tremere

Tremere’s whole deal is this deep connection to blood magic and arcane knowledge. They pursue mystical power and the secrets it unveils Tremere are disciplined, manipulative, ambitious, knowledge seeking (Academics, Advisors, Detectives), they are loyal and guarded. So definitely different from Brujah!

We hope you enjoy this collection of testimonies from a few of our departments and how they have approached crafting the formidable, legendary Tremere.

Designing modern Tremere for Tabletop

“While the vampire-as-sorcerer is rare outside of Hammer Horror films, the hubristic magician is an archetype strong enough to sit comfortably alongside the scheming undead of Vampire: The Masquerade. But for the game’s fifth edition we wanted to look beyond their signature powers, exploring the driving characteristics beneath.

Given that their concept implies — even necessitates — the practice of mystical arts, the Tremere are almost synonymous with Blood Sorcery. However, this is only one aspect of the Warlocks. Digging deeper we find that their defining trait, regardless of supernatural abilities, is raw, irreverent ambition. Their history is a tableau of temerity. Unwilling to settle for mortality, they clawed their way into undeath. Chafing at the limits of their condition, they turned a primordial curse into their instrument. And, once despised as pretenders, they now count themselves as pillars of the Camarilla.

Yet, for all the Tremere’s accomplishments, their triumphs are also their tragedies. Seeking eternal life, they found only an eternity of death. They are masters of the Blood, yet their own vitae is lacking, bereft of fundamental qualities. And even as they roam the halls of power, they are assailed by whispers: Blood-Thieves. Pretenders. Usurpers. A Tremere vampire walks an ill-fated path — challenged by their peers, haunted by suspicion, and doomed to risk every prize crumbling to ash in their hands.”

Karim Muammar, Designer of Vampire: The Masquerade 5th Edition and Brand Editor for the World of Darkness

MrsAmeliaThorn Tremere Wide

Mrs Amelia Thorn 

“There is an order and protocol to things around here, my dear. One must conduct oneself with proper decorum if one doesn’t want to get fucked over.” 

Amelia Thorn does not suffer fools, gladly or otherwise. You'll find her at the Wake the Dead all night coffee-bar, where she serves up bitter grounds and biting criticism in equal measure. 

Mrs Thorn serves as the Tremere Magister for Seattle's Court. She credits her longevity, both as a mortal and as a Kindred, to loyalty and knowing one's place. Work your way into her good books, and you'll find a powerful ally who can provide insights into everything from Camarilla secrets to arcane thaumaturgical rituals. Spill coffee on her books, and she is perfectly capable of turning your innards into outards. 

Writing the Tremere

“We wanted Mrs Thorn's personality to reflect some of the history and archetypes of the Tremere clan; perfectionism, the influences of the Pyramid with its dedication to order and hierarchy, and of course, the grim experiments with blood rituals.  

We were inspired by themes of Victorian occultism, which inform the character's backstory, and allow us to really revel in the stark contrast between propriety and order with black arts and violence. That's what makes Mrs Thorn so fun to write - she's a bloodthirsty anachronism, and what's more vampiric than that?” 

– Cherish Goldstraw, Writer

Combat Discipline Design

“Tremere's Gameplay was designed to befit a more careful, scheming, and perhaps for a sadistic kind of player. Their combat abilities are all centred around Blood sorcery, and allow them to manipulate with pain, kill quietly from afar, and set up a cascade of gory death at a time and place of their choosing!  

Tremere are at their strongest when they are patient and have a plan. This makes the clan ideal for players who want to take things at a slower pace, avoid direct (or fair) conflict and make use of vampiric abilities on a regular basis. 

Cautious players should find appeal in the ability to dissolve dead bodies with acidic touch, keeping enemies unaware, while their recall ability (which allows you to quickly transfer and reassemble yourself at a previously marked location) gives you a great way to escape when your schemes don’t work out as planned...  

Sooner or later though, the Tremere lust for knowledge will push you beyond caution. What happens to somebody standing where I'm going to recall to? What tactical uses might boiling blood torture have? Exploring and developing on these “what-ifs” has been the best part of building the Tremere’s combat toolset for me.”

– Max Bottomley, Senior Game Designer

What does a Tremere sound like?

"For the Tremere audio, I wanted to focus on the haunting sound of blood and gore as the players manipulate the enemy's vitae. When you boil an enemy's blood from the inside, causing them to explode, you will hear the chilling sounds of guts and gibs splattering all around you. The enemies’ pained screams will morph and distort, echoing hauntingly as they are consumed by the inferno within. For full immersion, subtle arcane whispers and the eerie pulsation of blood magic will be heard, intensifying the macabre spectacle, and hopefully sonically reflecting the Tremere's mastery over blood sorcery.”

– Marcus Bagshawe, Sound Designer

What does a Tremere look like?

“In crafting the visual identity of the Tremere clan for Bloodlines 2, we delved deep into the essence of blood magic and its enigmatic allure. Our Tremere are envisioned as beings that combine agility and fervour, also reflecting their preference for engaging in combat from a distance. This approach not only informs their abilities but also ensures their physical portrayal appears formidable, predatory, and adaptable while oozing ancient mystique. All this works in tandem when casting spells with intricate hand movements or unleashing their power from afar.

Characters Phyre TremereJewelery v01 IH

The Tremere wield their abilities to not only inflict direct damage, but also to apply offensive and passive effects by manipulating the vitae around them. This focus on ranged combat and blood sorcery will be visually represented through their movement, the visual effects of their spells and their outfits. 

The attire of the Tremere is a tapestry woven from the threads of various cultural influences, most notably the New Romantics, Baroque fashion, and Nu Goth. We tried to convey a sense of the ancient, and the energetic, modernised; mirroring the Tremere's rich history and the vibrant, living essence of their blood magic arts. The goal for our department was to encapsulate an aesthetic that speaks to the Tremere's arcane roots, with outfits that hint at an opulent, mysterious past, and a potent, otherworldly presence. We hope you like them!”

– Ben Matthews, Associate Art Director


Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2

Fight your way through a modern-day Seattle on the brink of an open war as an elder Vampire. Meet the power-players, ally yourself and decide who will rule and what the city will become.