Great news for Nintendo Switch as World of Darkness Vampire clans get busy in Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York thanks to an earlier than expected release date.
WARNING – The Following Article May Contain Content Unsuitable for Children
Following this week’s disappointing news that Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines II has been delayed even further into 2020, there is some good news.
Coteries of New York has been confirmed as arriving in December for Windows PC, with a Switch version arriving in early 2020 and no news yet for a console release.
The game is being both developed and published by Draw Distance, a team with a lot of experience in narrative-driven games.
Draw distance has developed other alternative games such as Ritual: Crown of Horns and Serial Cleaner.
Set in the World of Darkness tabletop RPG world, Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York is a text-based, narrative-driven adventure game based in the same universe.
Although there isn’t a lot of in-game screenshots or game footage, there is plenty of information about the game available.
The main story centers around a blood feud between two warring factions of the many Vampire clans that inhabit New York, The Anarchs and The Camarilla.
As a newly sired Vampire, you find yourself plunged straight into the middle of this boiling conflict between the traditional Camarilla Vampires and the revolutionary Anarch group.
The game’s narrative is divergent based on the player’s choices within the game and will play out accordingly, with player choices having an impact on avenues of sequence and ultimately the ending.
The developer has confirmed that because of the multitude of narratives and endings that the game will have a very high replayability value for players who wish to explore more of the world of Vampiric New York.
Aside from the main story, there will also be many secondary quests that players can undertake with their character and these also include “Loyalty Quests” that have been designed to help develop bonds with your coterie.
Character development has been given a large focus in this game and as well as race and faction, abilities are also dependant on certain choices in the game such as how often you feed and how you choose to do it.
Morality and ethics come into play a lot over the course of the game and not only shape the story, but also the playable character, as they either deny the nature of their new form or embrace it completely.
There are many Vampiric clans active in New York but only two of them are any cause for real concern – The Camarilla and The Anarch.
An Elitist and tight-knit community of traditional Masquerade Vampires, The Camarilla operates a strict code of silence and is governed using a hierarchical Elder and Childer paradigm.
Even though they are extremely powerful, The Camarilla are also falling apart from within as the Elder members of the organization refuse to change with the times, and a struggle between the masters and their subserviants is forming cracks in the pillars of their house.
In almost exact opposite style, The Anarch is a more modern and rebellious faction who feels that upholding the Masquerade isn’t always a necessity, and they operate with an attitude more reflective of the changing times.
However, with an inquisition looming, The Anarch knows that they must secure victory or face extreme consequences that will surely be doled out by the powerful Camarilla.
Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York is based on the 5th Edition of the tabletop RPG and has been designed to be inviting to newcomers yet rich enough for veteran players.
Although not a fully realized 3D game as is usually developed with current generation hardware, Coteries of New York has a very unique artistic direction.
A stylized and visually stunning version of New York with a high dynamic range style artistic nuance, the core visual representation of the artwork conveys an extremely gothic and neo-noir aspect of the city.
This captures both the classical and modern interpretations of Vampires extremely well, owing much credence to traditional Vampires such as Stoker’s Dracula, Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles and Charlaine Harris’ Southern Vampire Mysteries that were immortalized in the smash-hit TV show True Blood.
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For people who have never played a World of Darkness game, this will be an excellent starting point as it will not only introduce you to some of the finer mechanics of the game, but it will also serve as a great precursor to the upcoming triple-A title Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2.
Bloodlines 2 is the direct sequel to Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines and has been in development for 15 years.
An outstanding game at the time, Bloodlines was a fully interactive 3D game world set in World of Darkness and played very similar to Ion Storm’s now-legendary title Deus Ex.
Although the game was a cult classic, a sequel never arrived and fans had become all but dismayed, and the game faded into relative obscurity.
Then last year a sequel was announced by Hard Suit Labs and the series seems to be back and bigger than ever.
The official gameplay trailer is extremely impressive and shows a game world as immersive as we would expect from a current-generation, triple-A title and also looks set to be the sequel that fans of the series deserve.
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Set in Seattle, the game focuses yet again on a newly turned creature of the night as he or she embarks on a Vampiric quest across the city, getting to know the underworld, the factions that inhabit it and indeed him or herself along the way.
In other World of Darkness news, it has also been recently announced that another game set in the universe is in development.
This new game, however, doesn’t focus on Vampires and will instead include Werewolves and is seemingly focused on an environmental theme.
There aren’t any details as of yet but we do know that Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood has been scheduled for release sometime in 2020.
With all these new games set in World of Darkness releasing soon and hopefully some that we still don’t know about, this is certainly an exciting time for fans of the tabletop RPG as well as horror and RPG video game fans generally.
Coteries of New York is also the first-ever Vampire game for Nintendo Switch, and since there is no news of a PS4 or Xbox One version the game should perform well.
Owing to good fortune we won’t have to wait too long for Bloodlines 2 which should see a release either mid-2020 or late 2020 when I’m sure it will be one of the year’s top games.
Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York is scheduled for release on December 4th, 2019 for Nintendo Switch, Windows PC, Apple Mac and Linux.
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