GURPS Vampire: The Masquerade (1993)

So, as preposterous as it is on its face and despite coming here to basically mercilessly make fun of it, I regret to inform you that GURPS Vampire: The Masquerade is…good, actually.

I mean, it is still GURPS, so if you hate GURPS, you aren’t going to like this one bit. And it is preposterous. The idea of a company doing a full system conversion of Vampire will never not seem weird to me (compare to, like, Savage Worlds converting Rifts, which feels like destiny), but not only doing it, but also doing it well and having it sell good? In some ways, it is even superior!

Baseline, this is what it is advertised to be, V:tM, but powered by GURPS. The art direction is solid, a mix of actual V:tM art (primarily by Tim Bradstreet) and new art that could easily be V:tM art. It is also far more direct that the White Wolf book, both in its visual presentation (crisp, clean pages with a minimum of distracting gothic decoration) and its prose. There is a charm to the high school angstiness that flavors the WW books, but the clarity of the GURPS version makes their version far easier to play.

And, because it’s GURPS, all the other GURPS books can be plugged into it. So you can do western vampires, or space vampires, or dark age vampires, or time traveling bunny vampires, so long as you have the right books. That’s…surprisingly neat!

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