Now that Paradox has, after much secrecy, revealed Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture developer The Chinese Room as the new developer on Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2, the information floodgates are open, and the studio’s latest development update has unveiled a new fully voiced playable protagonist, Phyre.
As per The Chinese Room’s latest developer stream, Phyre is a somewhat pre-defined Elder vampire recently awoken after a 100-year slumber and slightly bewildered by modern-day Seattle. Phyre, for reasons initially unknown, carries a mysterious brand on their hand which is somehow connected to a voice in their head – belonging to a modern vampire known as Fabien – who’s bound to them, serving as an ever-present companion as the adventure continues.
While Phyre’s loose backstory might already be in place, there’s some flexibility as to how they present in-game, with players able to choose their gender, clothing, and clan.
As a story driven RPG, Bloodlines 2 will offer different ways for players to shape their narrative experience alongside the usual conversational dialogue tree. That clan choice, for instance, affects the powers available to players, and these can be further augmented and adapted by considering the emotional resonance of potential prey before having a nibble. Even elements like a player’s choice of clothing might have an impact on how characters respond to Phyre.
This latest Bloodlines 2 video forms the fourth entry in a relatively new series of development updates from The Chinese Room that have so far covered the likes of the game’s design philosophy, atmosphere, themes, and neo noir art style.
Bloodlines 2 has, of course, had a rather troubled history since its announcement in 2019. Publisher Paradox Interactive ditched original developer Hardsuit Labs back in 2020 following a number of controversies, and the game was almost cancelled before a new studio – now known to be The Chinese Room – was hired to take on the title.
With development now seemingly back in full swing, Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 is set to release for PC, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X/S late next year.