Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines

Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines comes during a surprisingly dry year for PC role-playing games, which only amplifies the attention on the game. There's also a lot of focus on Bloodlines due to the fact that it's based on White Wolf's popular pen-and-paper role-playing game, and partly since it uses Valve's Source engine, the same engine behind Half-Life 2. And, for the most part, Bloodlines is an atmospheric role-playing game with a rich setting--though it's one beset with a clumsy combat system and some noticeable bugs. That's unfortunate, since the game clearly could have been better had its rough edges been ironed out. 

You start Bloodlines by creating a vampire, which you'll do by conforming to the seven major vampire types found in the pen-and-paper game. The idea is that you can create a vampire suited to your style of play. The options range from sophisticated vampires that can talk their way past most situations, to burly vampires who like to intimidate people and pick fights, to demonic vampires who prefer to skulk in the shadows. And while you can select a gender for your vampire (which affects the kinds of characters you can seduce), you won't actually be able to customize your vampire's appearance, aside from the kind of clothes he or she wears. Read more at Gamespot>>

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