Vampire: The Masquerade — Parliament of Knives — BETA TESTERS NEEDED

Dominate undead politics through cunning and violence! Will a missing Prince give you the opening to betray your sire and seize power? Or will you remain loyal?

Vampire: The Masquerade — Parliament of Knives is a 600,000-word interactive horror novel by Jeffrey Dean, based on “Vampire: The Masquerade” and set in the World of Darkness shared story universe. Your choices control the story. It’s entirely text-based—without graphics or sound effects—and fueled by the vast, unstoppable power of your imagination.

The undead Prince of Canada’s capital city has disappeared, and his second-in-command, Eden Corliss, wants you to find out why. You’ve been loyal to Corliss since she Embraced you and made you a vampire, but this could be your chance to take her place. Will you defend your sire from the accusations flying, or join forces with her rivals to bring her down?

Ottawa’s court of immortals is tight-knit and merciless, with tensions between clans that go back centuries. The Prince has been missing for four days, and old alliances are starting to crumble. How will you leverage the political chaos to your advantage? The authorities are already on high alert against a new group of Anarchs in the city, who have been breaching the Masquerade by revealing their true nature. You’ll have to gather evidence to demonstrate which suspects deserve punishment, and you can’t afford to guess wrong. One careless word could get you stabbed in the back—staked through the heart, and left to burn in the sun.

• Choose from three clans, each with different gifts.
• Flaunt your coercive dominance as a Ventrue, your dark stealth as a Nosferatu, or your heightened senses as a Toreador.
• Master the social scene and ensnare the weak in your thrall.
• Command your own manservant and ghoul.
• Attack the Anarchs in the city, or help them take over.
• Uncover the lies at the heart of Ottawa’s immortal court.
• Romance a sheriff or a seer.
• Feast on the blood dolls of your charismatic ally.
• Play as male, female, or nonbinary; gay, straight, or bi.

Who will you save when the knives are out?


Directions for beta testing:

Email us, beta AT choiceofgames for access. (This changed several months ago, so take note if you haven’t beta tested in a while.)

Do not send DMs/PMs through the forum mail system, Discord, text message, carrier pigeon, or any other method than email.

When you send your EMAIL, include:

  • the game you want to test in the Subject line of the email.
  • your forum-name
  • your real name (first and last)
  • if your family/surname comes first, please indicate that. I will assume that your given name is listed first unless you tell me otherwise.

Do not email us multiple times about joining a beta. If you don’t email us as soon as we post a beta, you go into a queue. As we post new drafts, we admit more people from the queue. Eventually, we will get to you. When you have been admitted to the beta, we will send you a link, a username, and a password as a reply to your email.

When you have feedback to submit:

  • Return feedback to beta@choiceofgames, preferably part of the same email thread/chain, rather than a new one.
  • Please send screenshots or copy/pasted quotes as often as you can; it helps us track down whatever observation you’re making. In particular, the author may see things that you don’t, and/or the screenshot may contain more information than you realize.
  • If you’re submitting feedback using the Bug/Submit button in the game, make sure you include your handle/name in the body of the email. The Submit button obscures your email address, and I can’t give you credit for feedback if I don’t know who you are.

DO NOT POST ASKING WHAT THE BETA EMAIL ADDRESS IS. The first test to becoming a beta tester is inferring what it is based on the above paragraph.

Lastly, you cannot be testing two games at once. Send feedback on one and you can apply to another.

Tips on How to Give Feedback
I’m looking for “high level” and “low level” feedback. Not mid-level feedback.

Low-level = typos and continuity errors. A continuity error is when a character’s gender flips, or someone comes back from the dead, or you run into a plotline that just doesn’t make sense (because it’s probably a coding error).

For these low-level issues, screenshots are very helpful. If you see a problem, take a screenshot, or copy and paste the text that is in error, and email that.

“High level” feedback has to do with things like plot, pacing, and characters. “Scene A didn’t work for me because x, y, and z,” is useful feedback. “B character was entirely unsympathetic, because u, w, and v,” is also useful feedback.

“Mid-level” feedback describes things like grammar, style, word choice, or the use of commas. As I said above, I do not want mid-level feedback. In particular, DO NOT WRITE TO ME ABOUT COMMAS.

“I had a great time and saw only a few spelling errors,” is not useful feedback. In fact, it’s the sort of thing that results in you not being given access to future betas.

Some examples of useful feedback :
In Choice of the Dragon, you get to choose what type of wings you have: leather or scaled. Someone wrote in and asked about having feathered wings. Great suggestion! Done!

In “The Eagle’s Heir,” someone asked about Eugenie. They said that the romance moved too quickly–because she only appeared in the last third of the game–and wished they could have had an opportunity to meet her earlier. So the authors added an opportunity to meet her and start the romance earlier in the game (in a scene that already existed).

In “Demon Mark: A Russian Saga” several people commented on how the PC’s parents were unsympathetic, so the authors added a choice or two to deepen the relationship with the parents in the first chapter, to help better establish their characters.

Similarly, pointing out a specific choice and saying, “this is who I imagined my character was at this particular moment, and none of these options seemed right for me. I would have liked an option to do X instead,” is also really helpful feedback.

Another useful piece of feedback: if you choose an #option and then the results of that #option don’t make sense. Like, if you thought an #option might test one stat, but it seems to have tested a different one.

25 Likes

In case you missed the mailer!

3 Likes

New draft posted!

  • Numerous spelling and grammar fixes
  • Rat reunion added to Anarch ending branches
  • Removed glitch allowing player to repeat duplicate evidence to Adeline and build up their rep
  • Removed possibility of double chapter header in chapter 9
  • Can no longer return to Alisha’s blood doll feeding location if you were already told it was closed
  • ch10: Player will no longer be referenced as up for execution if they return from failed villa mission.

  • page_break added between ch10 trial interludes
  • Hid questions already asked of Arundel upon his reconstitution.

4 Likes

New draft posted! r24736

  • Added 12 portraits.
  • Typos and grammar fixes.
  • Added 3 new feeding scenes set below the Sappers’ Staircase by the tunnel and canal.
  • Chapter 1: Added an option for a nonbinary past lover to character creation per request.
  • Smoothed abrupt transition from Auspex-based infiltration to ambushing Ward in chapter 1.
  • If MC is Nosferatu, it makes opening mission very Nos-heavy. Added small conversation between MC and Jordan to that effect, acknowledging that such a thing would be rare.
  • MC can no longer see what Qui is doing when he approaches the warehouse obfuscated.
  • Added numerous alternate bits to Corliss scenes and dialog acknowledging her as a Nos if the MC is a Nos.
  • If MC is a Nos, they are more familiar with the sewer systems during the Bouchard interview.
  • Several minor changes to the chapter 10 ending branches per suggestions.
  • Using Auspex at the chapter 10 trial can no longer be looped indefinitely.
  • If destroyed, Bouchard should no longer come back to life in the epilogue.
7 Likes

New draft posted! r24764

  • Spelling and grammar fixes.
  • Added feeding area: Greyhound bus station.
  • Hunger now set to 5 after your first encounter with Ward.
  • Added option in chapter 3 to tell Qui about Ward proposing you in chapter 2.
  • You can now use Dominate or Presence to talk your way out of getting banned from the 27 Club.
  • In chapter 5, added more dialogue after joining the Anarchs to repel the mortal attackers so the transition to feeding isn’t as abrupt.
  • In chapter 7, if you decline to join the Anarchs BEFORE hearing their plan, you no longer loop indefinitely after the sewer raid.
  • Added the option to choose not to feed at the beginning of chapter 8 if your Hunger is less than 3.
  • In chapter 8, if you tell the Archon at least 3 things she didn’t know and trigger the achievement, she won’t act disappointed and manipulate you into telling more.
  • Added a lead-in after the floor drops out from under you in chapter 10, so the transition isn’t so abrupt.
  • Chapter 10 no longer mixes up a paragraph of dialogue regarding whether or not Kashif is present at the council meeting.
  • Can no longer encounter and fight Bouchard on the Anarch ending branch if you’d previously allied with Bouchard and then betrayed/killed him before defecting to the Anarchs. An unlikely scenario, but it was possible.
  • Tried to make the password clue more obvious in Arundel’s villa without giving it away entirely.
  • In chapter 10, you can no longer destroy Adeline if she has you blood bonded.
8 Likes

New draft posted! r24787

  • Spelling and grammar fixes.
  • Hunger now increases upon waking. (balancing issue)
  • Accounted for they/them pronouns in the chapter 1 frenzy-feeding scene.
  • Removed a few feeding options from Ventrue MCs’ meal plans and added text on them as to why. Blue Bloods don’t drink from drug addicts or vagrants.
  • Added several NPC reactions to various Nosferatu disfigurements that the player may have chosen for their MC.
  • When feeding on the young woman beside the canal, Ventrue MCs may now cloud the mind of her lover to make him forget what he saw.
  • Chapter 3: Added an option to inform Qui ahead of time about the meeting that the MC had with Vivian.
  • Chapter 4: Removed the possibility of getting Corliss’s dialog “cynic of a neonate” twice.
  • In chapter 6, the Archon would accuse you of meeting Ward if you lied to her earlier, even if that wasn’t the case. Her statement is now less specific.
  • Chapter 6: Defeating Javier no longer results in a double page break that occurred in certain circumstances.
  • Chapter 8: If Qui diablorized Javier, he admits it to the MC in the romance arc and expresses concern about the ramifications. If the MC has not romanced him, his behavior grows strange in certain epilogues and the MC notices him talking to himself when he thinks he’s alone.
  • Chapter 9: Added an option to be more sympathetic to Kashif if you’re on Corliss’s side.
  • Extended the Anarch branch’s ‘bad ending’ to include fleeing to Waterloo. All ending branches are now feature-complete.
  • Clarified several V:TM terms for new readers in the main text, including the specific mention of ‘Prince’ being a gender-neutral title to avoid misunderstandings and perceived continuity errors. According to one beta reader, neither of the previous games mentioned that it was gender-neutral and only had a male Prince in Night Road, resulting in confusion.
4 Likes

New draft posted! r24867