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I'm currently involved in my first World of Darkness game. While reading the clanbook for my clan (Nosferatu) I understand that there is a pervasive fear of the clan's antediluvian founder arising and consuming current-generation vampires.

Based on my conversations with other players, their clanbooks say similar things.

However, none of us are sure what the source of this fear is. Why would antediluvian want to prey on current-generation vampires?

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Because they can't eat anything else.

A vampire's (effective) generation has a significant effect on their power level in a variety of ways. This includes the maximum amount of vitae they can hold, the amount of vitae they can spend in a single round, and the maximum value their attributes can reach.

Lower (more powerful) generation has a drawback, however: it makes you a pickier eater. While a typical vampire player character can subsist on pretty much any blood they can get their fangs into, older vampires can only feed on human blood. For the oldest vampires even fresh blood from the healthiest of kine isn't pure/refined enough; they can only feed from other vampires.

Of course, any time one vampire feeds from another they risk forming a blood bond, giving the vampire they fed from power over them. This risk is most easily mitigated by draining the "donor" dry; you can't be blood bound to an un-undead corpse. Thus, a vampire that must feed from other vampires will prefer to kill those it feeds from even if this diablerie grants it no other benefits due to the victim being weaker.

The Antediluvians are obviously old enough to have this sort of feeding restriction. Further, their blood pools are likely enormous (or even infinite!) in capacity; once they wake and start draining their progeny, they're not likely to be satiated short of draining every single childer they can locate.

(I'm away from home for the holidays; I will add references when I return home in a few days and have access to my books.)

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    \$\begingroup\$ I dont remember the exact source of this (might have been the tremere clanbook, but we are talking about 15-years old memories here), but I remember reading that the concentration of blood is much higher on older vampires, so feeding on humans wouldnt provide them enough blood to refill their usage. In other words, each point of vitae is worth far more "blood cells" the older the vampire is, so drinking less concentrated blood would be worthless to antedeluvians. Its like an addiction to a drug. Since you still own those books, you might be able to find the actual source of this. \$\endgroup\$ – ShadowKras Nov 21 '18 at 17:25
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  1. The Nosferatu’s founder is a special case — he hates his childer because their ugliness is an affront to him. That’s why the Nictuku, a bloodline of fourth-generation vampires, are set to the task of hunting them down.

  2. By committing the amaranth, the clan founders can absorb the souls, memories, skills, and knowledges of those upon whom they feed.

  3. In the end, it's their blood, anyway; they just want it back. :)
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