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Vampire: The Masquerade – Redemption is a PC role-playing game released on June 7, 2000 by Activision. The game follows the adventures of a French crusader, Christof Romuald, through Prague and Vienna in the Dark Ages and modern-day London and New York City. The game is based on the pen-and-paper roleplaying game Vampire: The Masquerade.
In the game's storyline, the protagonist Christof falls in love with a nun named Anezka who tends his wounds after he falls in battle. Christof, not fully recovered, ventures into the Bonn Silver Mines (near Prague) to kill Ahzra the Unliving, a twisted Tzimisce vampire. His glorious return to Prague doesn't go unnoticed by the local vampire leaders and soon he is "embraced" (turned into a vampire) by Ecaterina the Wise, leader of the Brujah clan, as to boost the ranks of vampires in preparation for a brewing battle between vampire clans. Having been made one of the undead, the passionate crusader has to realize that he deviated from his religious mission long ago; being only a mundane soldier, he was easy prey for the vampires. His rebellious nature, however, urges him to find a way to redeem his soul, perhaps by regaining his mortal state. But before long, in a move designed to torment Christof (in retaliation for dispatching Ahzra), the nun is kidnapped and turned into a ghoul, a servitor to vampires addicted to vampire blood. This changes Christof's part in the course of events, since he is now being wracked with guilt as he feels his affection towards Anezka led her down a path of sin. Christof swears to face the vampires who took her and restore her life as human.
In his quest, being a powerful vampire, he must learn to conquer his dark side and gain experience with his new powers (vampiric disciplines, similar to spells) to fight against a world of darkness that unfolds before him, as he learns more about this new world he is now a part of, while struggling to maintain his humanity and the faith he once had as a holy knight.
In a climactic battle he is buried under tons of rubble, only to awaken centuries later in the modern world, uncovered by an archeological dig, and faced by a whole new series of challenges – including a fearsome new enemy whose actions may well doom the entire world. Christof eventually finds the vampires responsible for the kidnapping of his love only to find the pure woman of God that he fell in love with is now a twisted, violated creature of the night who shuns him as an emotional weakling, serving to an Infernalist Tzimisce plotting to avert Gehenna by destroying all the Antediluvians. The game sports three different possible outcomes, depending on certain choices in the game which affected Christof's humanity level either negatively or positively.
Twelve of the thirteen great vampire clans (from the original storytelling game) feature in Redemption, in one form or another. The only exception being clan Ravnos.
Besides the famous Christof Romuald who also appears in White Wolf's Brujah clan novel, the following characters also feature:
Wilhem Streicher - a Brujah of the 10th Generation, possibly a Child of Ecaterina the Wise and her servant, a rather unusual Brujah, recognised by his calmness despite his action oriented nature. He rejoins Christof in his adventures in New York. During the time of Christof's torpor from the Dark Ages to modern days Ecaterina and the Promethians have eventually joined the Sabbat, a Vampire sect that views mortals as simple cattle. Despite his allegiance determined by the relations of the Promethians with the Ventrue, Wilhem appears to have managed to preserve a good part of his humanity. He also teaches Christof the basics of being a Cainite during his first missions. To be noted about Wilhem that besides his standard Brujah disciplines of Potence, Presence and Celerity he also has knowledge of Protean, a discipline characteristic to the Gangrel Clan.
Serena - Serena is the Childe of Garinol of Clan Cappadocian. Like all of her clan she has a corpse-like appearance, yet it is obvious that even if pale she retains her natural beauty. Serena is a Scholar first and foremost and not really adept at combat, acting as a support character to the others using her supernatural senses, resilience and the powers over the Dead to aid the party. Like all Cappadocians she has their three basic disciplines, Auspex (supernatural senses), Fortitude (resilience) and Mortis (the power that grants her control over the dead). She will be able to raise killed enemies and summon Spirits, rather useful abilities adding an additional group member. Also she acts as an advisor to Christof and probably has the best understanding of the pain that is in his heart.
Erik - a giant Gangrel who is imprisoned at Ardan's Chantry and being prepared to be turned into a gargoyle. He is rescued by Christof's coterie just before the final stage of transformation. He joins the group as to repay this "life boon". Erik, as most Gangrels, is physically stronger than vampires of other clans and possesses the Disciplines of Protean and Animalism (shapeshifting into a wolf, drawing out and quelling the beast). A rather moody but absolutely honorable and reliable character, he will fight alongside Christof until he meets his tragic destiny upon his return to Prague from Vienna.
Pink - A Brujah who befriends Christof on his first night in London. Pink sets Christof in the right direction for his quest of finding Anezka. He is actually an Assamite masquerading as a Brujah.
Lily - A Toreador singer who was kidnapped by Setites and blood-bound to become a prostitute. Christof and Pink rescue her (and eventually her Sire), making for an additional team member. She's not that powerful at first, starting off as barely a Neonate, but she has a lot of branches where she can develop. She serves as an emotional foil to Christof.
Samuel - A Camarilla Nosferatu (who is still quite a charismatic fellow), Christof's group encounter him in New York cornered by Sabbat Nosferatu. After being rescued, he joins up with Christof's party despite Pink's protests.
Nihilistic released a modding kit, including a level editor, shortly after the games release that was available for download. Modding communities were small and sporadic, but some large levels have been constructed, and various large modding projects were undertaken, including a Star Trek makeover (not completed), and "Vampires Gaze" (set in the Middle East), for which the modding community still exists (as of early 2010).
Redemption received mixed reviews. The game's graphics were highly advanced for its time, including then-novel effects such as multiple shadows rendered dynamically from in-game light sources. Vampire: The Masquerade – Redemption also includes a multiplayer game mode in which one player takes the role of the storyteller. The game itself is divided into two parts, one medieval and one modern, each of which play differently. Although generally hailed as a good and enjoyable game by most critics, its reception was affected by bugs and design flaws.
Another Vampire: The Masquerade videogame entitled Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines was released in 2004.
- Green, Jeff (April 1999) "Vampire The Masquerade: Redemption" Computer Gaming World Issue #177, p. 110, a software review