World Of Darkness: RUSSIA
A Campaign Setting by David 'Blue' Wendt

This is not, nor is it intended to be, World of Darkness canon.  This is my interpretation of fictional Russia, based on materials identified in the References section. The GM reserves the right to say 'No' to any aspect of character design or any character action that he feels violates the intention of the game.

Russia, circa 1868.  This will be a Dark Ages/Sorcerers Crusade crossover World of Darkness campaign.  Contact with the world outside of Russia will be minimal, except as history dictates, and the global influence of such World of Darkness groups as the Camarilla and the Sabbat will be ignored.

For most of Russian history, there has been tension between the Tzimisce and the Silver Fangs.  In some times and places, this was demonstrated by all-out warfare and, in other eras and locations, by a sort of cold war.  Wraiths, the fae and mortal sorcerers attempt to be independent third parties, with only the best intentions for their mortal friends and family at heart, but more often than not find themselves drawn into an uneasy alliance with the Shape Shifters of the region.  Kindred, for the most part, can be assumed to behave as described in Vampire the Dark Ages.  True Mages hold themselves aloof from all and manipulate all parties for their own cryptic purposes.

For Wraiths, the campaign era is a time between the Third and Fourth Great Maelstroms.  Details of 'life' in the Shadowlands can be gleaned from Wraith, 2nd edition, pages 71-73.

By 1868, the Faerie have experienced the Shattering, and have mostly adapted to the new way of things as described in Changeling: The Dreaming.  However, their numbers and diversity are limited, and the Sidhe have not re-appeared in Russian lands.

Additional Background Information:

The Campaign:
The campaign has been shifted to Play By E-mail mode.  For character e-mails, look here.

This will be a campaign of political intrigue and Machiavellian manipulation.  The overall story will revolve around the life of Nicholas II and the shift from Imperial Russia to Soviet Russia.

Each player may run two or more characters.  Their primary character will be either an elder vampire created using the rules in Elysium, an experienced mage using house rules based on Sorcerers Crusade and modified in accordance with the Elysium rules or some other elder style character developed with the input and approval of the Storyteller.  This character will be akin to the Magi of Ars Magica in that they will run their household and have their underlings deal with the outside world.  These characters have been active for at least a human lifetime, granting them significant influence and their increased abilities.  They are likely secretive, and known only to outsiders by name, if that.  If you wish to play a character other than a kindred or mage as your primary, contact the Storyteller privately.

Your secondary character(s) [companions] will be the way in which your primary character interacts with the world.  As such, one or more must be able to interact with the mortal court easily, ie., during the day, in normal dress, etc.  Your companions must be tied to your primary character in some way, and you must be able to explain to the Storyteller's satisfaction why each companion complies the primary character's wishes.  Companions will have no script immunity and can be killed over the course of the story, so you may wish to develop more than one such minion before play begins.  In general, each player will only have one companion active in any given scene, but companion characters can be mixed and matched between scenes as appropriate. Your first secondary character is "free", that is, there are no requirements for use or cost to possess.  Any additional secondary characters should be represented appropriately by background and/or merit pruchases by the primary character.  For example, if you wish to have a group of three revenets under your (the player's) direct control, the first is free and the additional two would likely be purchased as two dots of the Background Retainer.  On the other hand, if you merely wish to have a Revenent clan at your beck and call (but under the Storyteller's control) this will either be free or purchased (for instance) as dots of Military force, depending on their intended use/usefulness.  Other than these restrictions and the Storyteller's overall veto ability, you may create any sort of character native to the World of Darkness (see Character Generation for more details).

All characters should be fully fleshed out with histories and the like.  All characters and character concepts must be individually approved by the Storyteller before play begins.  Players will be expected to understand the capabilities of their characters.  If you don't understand something, clear up your confusion with the Storyteller outside of the session.

Additional experience may be awarded to players who write narratives of the campaign from their perspective.  Such awards will be based on the Storyteller's subjective evaluation of the quality of the story (not necessarily of the writing).  These awards will be made as the narratives are read by the Storyteller.  These narratives may be added to this web site at the Storyteller's discretion.

House Rules:
Due to the nature of the area portrayed, the Gauntlet is thinner and all rolls should reference Vampire: The Dark Ages for difficulties.
In the battle between the Mages, Russia is behind the rest of Europe and the difficulties described in Mage: Sorcerers Crusade should be used.
Character Generation

Eras Of Interest:
600 - 862 A.D.    Prologue: Slavs and Varangians

863 - 913 A.D.    The Rus and Kiev 913 - 978 A.D.    Years of Early Growth 978 -1015 A.D.   Vladimir 1015-1505 A.D.  The Latter Days of Kievan Russia 1505-1682 A.D.  The Muscovite Era 1682-1725 A.D.  The Beginning of the End 1725-1917 A.D.  Imperial Russia 1917-1990 A.D.  Soviet Russia 1995 + A.D.        Modern Day


  • GURPS Russia, by S. John Ross
  • A History of Russia, by Nicholas V. Riasanovsky
  • Essential Russian Mythology, by Pyotr Simonov
  • RUS, by Mark Chapman
  • various White Wolf books and homepages, including
  • as well as the invaluable advice, support and inspiration of Bruce Baugh and the Eyrie Mafia