Vampire Bloodlines: Forget it, Syp, it’s Chinatown

(This is part of my journey going playing through 2004’s Vampire The Masquerade Bloodlines. You can follow the entire series on the Retro Gaming page.)

Finally I arrive in Chinatown, the last of the four major city hubs of Bloodlines. According to the backstory of this game’s development, Troika had to speed through the final act, which is why Chinatown has fewer locations and quests than the previous zones. And that’s a shame, because I actually like the layout and look of this place. It’s certainly far less sleazy then the other regions, and it introduces the Asian version of vampires, which is apparently different than normal Kindred for reasons that I don’t care to explain.

And, naturally, it houses a giant shark monster. This is totally out of left field but I loved it. It’s kind of why I appreciate this game despite its less savory aspects, because it does have a fun imagination and a wicked sense of humor at times.

Thanks, quest, for making me get these. At least they came from someone who (a) was already dead and (b) not by my hands. Still, I’m going to have to wash up afterward.

Seriously, if you played any character other than a Malkavian, you failed at Bloodlines. So, so many great lines like this one above. I always went as crazy as possible just to see what people would say. Usually they took it in stride.

After far too many shinnanigans to relate — including going through a series of deadly “tests” for a guy trying to fine-tune vampire killing — I managed to secure the much-desired sarcophagus and bring it back to the Prince. Kind of wonder how we got that on the elevator to a penthouse, but nevermind. The only problem left is that the sarcophagus requires a key, and that means more Syp questing because everyone else is too lazy to do this but this four-day-old vampire, apparently.

I do have a showdown with the vampire hunter in his training facility. I absolutely love these adorable vampire and werewolf cutouts for the target range, don’t you?

Next up on the key hunting scene is to take the fight to the Sabbat in a decrepit hotel (that’s not haunted, alas). After another very long bout of fighting — the rest of the game is like this, alas — I come to a room where a couple of bad guys kill Heather. No! Heather! I will avenge you and your poor taste in fashion!

I guess my bad mood started to get to me, because I stopped being friendly to Officer Chunk and let him down very hard. I think I had to kill him later on but I felt really bad about it.

All of the sudden Beckett starts warning me NOT to open the sarcophagus as I near endgame. Listen pal, I don’t even care about this thing, it’s just that everyone else in this city seems to be nuts over it. I’d move to Denver if the game would let me.

Betrayal! As I try to find the Anarchist Nines to piece together what is an increasingly convoluted political situation that really isn’t that interesting, a werewolf corners us in a secluded observatory. It’s the terminator of supernatural beasts, pretty much indestructible to my normal weapons. I cowered like the coward that I am and eventually slunk out of there to find an entire city arrayed against me.

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