The special legacy of the Malkavian clan, Dementation allows the vampire to channel madness, focus it, and pour it into the minds of those around him. Though in former nights this power was practiced primarily by the Malkavians of the Sabbat, in recent years it has spread throughout the clan. Some Kindred speculate that this "infection" might be yet another move in the Jyhad; a few vampires, of particularly paranoid bent, even whisper that the Malkavians are to be harbingers of the Final Nights. The practitioner of Dementation need not actually be mad himself - at least initially - although madness seems to grant a certain insight into the key tenets of this Discipline. Few vampires ask the Malkavians to teach them this Discipline, although the Lunatics are almost always eager to "enlighten" others. In fact, some say that one cannot learn the secrets of Dementation without eventually going mad. Eerily enough, Dementation doesn't seem to inflict insanity on its victims per se. Rather, it seems to catalyze madness, breaking down doors into the hidden reaches of the mind and releasing whatever it finds there. The Malkavians claim that this is because insanity is the next step in the evolution of the mind - a necessary progression if one is to behold the truths of the universe. As such, they say, it is inherent to all minds, and evident only in the more highly evolved specimens of human or vampiric thought. Other Kindred pray the Malkavians are wrong, but find it difficult to dismiss such thoughts out of hand, particularly because Dementation works as well on vampires as it does on mortals...
The vampire may stir his victim's emotions, either heightening them to a fevered pitch or blunting them until the target is completely desensitized. The Cainite may not choose which emotion is affected; she may only amplify or dull emotions already present in the target. In this way, a vampire can turn mild irritation into frothing rage or dull true love into casual interest.
System: The player rolls Charisma + Empathy (difficulty of the victim's Humanity score). The number of successes determines the duration of the altered state of feeling. Effects of this power might include one- or two-point additions or subtractions to difficulties of frenzy rolls, Virtue rolls, rolls to resist Presence powers, etc.
1 success One turn
2 successes One hour
3 successes One night
4 successes One week
5 successes One month
6+ successes Three months
The vampire may stir the sensory centers of his victim's brain, flooding the victim's senses with visions, sounds, scents or feelings that aren't really there. The images, regardless of the sense to which they appeal, are only fleeting "glimpses," barely perceptible to the victim. The vampire using Dementation cannot control what the victim perceives, but may choose which sense is affected. The "haunting" effects occur mainly when the victim is alone, and mostly at night. They may take the form of the subject's repressed fears, guilty memories, or anything else that the Storyteller finds dramatically appropriate. The effects are never pleasant or unobtrusive, however. The Storyteller should let her imagination run wild when describing these sensory impressions; the victim may well feel as if she is going mad, or as if the world is.
System: The player spends a blood point and rolls Manipulation + Subterfuge (difficulty of his victim's Perception + Self- Control). The number of successes determines the length of the sensory "visitations." The precise effects are up to the Storyteller, though particularly eerie or harrowing apparitions can certainly reduce dice pools for a turn or two after the manifestation.
1 success One night
2 successes Two nights
3 successes One week
4 successes One month
5 successes Three months
6+ successes One year
Eyes of Chaos
This peculiar power allows the vampire to take advantage of the fractured wisdom hidden in insanity. She may scrutinize the "patterns" of a person's soul, the convolutions of a vampire's inner nature, or even random events in nature itself. The Kindred with this power can discern the most well-hidden psychoses, or gain insight into a person's true self. Malkavians with this power often have (or claim to have) knowledge of the moves and countermoves of the great Jyhad.
System: This power allows a vampire to determine a person's true Nature, among other things. The vampire concentrates for a turn, then her player rolls Perception + Occult. The difficulty depends on the intricacy of the pattern. Discerning the Nature of a stranger would be difficulty 9; a casual acquaintance would be an 8, an old friend a 6. The Malkavian could also read the message locked in a coded missive (difficulty 7), or even see the doings of an invisible hand in such events as the pattern of falling leaves (difficulty 6). Almost anything might contain some hidden insight, no matter how trivial or meaningless. The patterns are present in most things, but are often so intricate they can keep a vampire spellbound for hours while she tries to understand their "message."
Voice of Madness
By merely addressing his victims aloud, the Malkavian can drive targets into fits of blind rage or fear, forcing them to abandon reason and higher thought. Victims are plagued by hallucinations of their subconscious demons, and try to flee or destroy their hidden shames. Tragedy almost always follows in the wake of this power's use, although offending Malkavians often claim that they were merely encouraging people to act "according to their natures." Unfortunately for the vampire concerned, he runs a very real risk of falling prey to his own voice's power.
System: The player spends a blood point and makes a Manipulation + Empathy roll (difficulty 7). One target is affected per success, although all potential victims must be listening to the vampire's voice. Affected victims fly immediately into frenzy or a blind fear like Rotschreck. Kindred or other creatures capable of frenzy, such as Lupines, may make a frenzy check or Rotschreck test (Storyteller's choice as to how they are affected) at +2 difficulty to resist the power. Mortals are automatically affected and don't remember their actions while berserk. The frenzy or fear lasts for a scene, although vampires and Lupines may test as usual to snap out of it. The vampire using Voice of Madness must also test for frenzy or Rotschreck upon invoking this power, although his difficulty to resist is one lower than normal.
The vampire pulls the madness from the deepest recesses of her target's mind, focusing it into an overwhelming wave of insanity. This power has driven countless victims, vampire and mortal alike, to unfortunate ends.
System: The Malkavian must gain her target's undivided attention for at least one full turn to enact this power. The player spends a blood point and rolls Manipulation + Intimidation (difficulty of her victim's Willpower). If successful, the victim is afflicted with five derangements of the Storyteller's choice (see p. 222). The number of successes determines the duration.
1 success One turn
2 successes One night
3 successes One week
4 successes One month
5+ successes One year