Monday, May 2, 2011

Vampire 20th / The modern world

I woke up this morning to a massive world news story. You may be aware of it. I'll not issue any spoilers if you've not.
It reminded me of something I'd been thinking about a couple of weeks ago, around the publication of White Wolf's Vampire: the Masquerade 20th anniversary edition (V:tM R.5?).

Firstly, a link, link fans:
http://www.vampirethemasquerade.com/

Are we up to speed? Awesome.

What I was thinking was this: how are they going to adapt the setting to reflect 2011 onwards? Or, how are they going to incorporate the events of the last ten or so years, specifically 9/11?
With the publication of Vampire Revised in 98 (?), there was a revision of the Assamite clan, and the metaplot focussed on a threat from the East.
Then, just as New York by Night was due for publication, the Twin Towers were attacked and the world changed over night.
White Wolf chose not to pull or amend the book, instead opting to fix it firmly before the attack and present it as a tribute to a heroic city.

Or, in other words, real life events did not affect the metaplot.

So I found myself wondering what take V20 will take on the events since 9/11, and on the events of the last few days.
Will the Assamites be affected? Theoretically they should be sympathetic to some of the ideologies of the Muslim extremist movements, and are certainly geared up to wage a war against their enemies.

I also think that playing an Assamite would be a roleplay challenge in itself, given recent events.
Could most players do the concept justice without crossing any lines of gaming etiquette?
I don't know, myself. It would be hard for me to portray a fundamentalist amongst people who personified everything he stood against.

Finally, a question to you all: should a RPG game reference world events as defining and emotive as 9/11?