After reading the God Machine Update I realized that it invalidated a large portion of the core book and Armory and Armory Reloaded. I am about to start a new chronicle and am considering getting Blood and Smoke and the full God Machine Chronicles, but even prior to that I was considering books such as the Danse Macabre and Damnation City. Obviously I doubt that this book completely invalidates any book, I'm simply wondering which books are probably less valid now than they were before. (I think I noticed something about Invictus and Ordo Dracul books having significant rule changes)
In short: It basically does. But there are exceptions, including Damnation City.
God Machine Rules Update
The God Machine Rules Update (the Appendix of the God Machine Chronicles) invalidated large portions of the pervious nWoD books. Each section is labeled as to what sections of the existing books it either updates, replaced or supplemented:
Anything updated mean the content is largely invalidated. Some things in this section are listed as "Supplements and replaces"
- character creation and Advancement
- Vitues and Vice (core 100-105)
- Weapons and Armour (from core)
- Rules/formula are provided (page 204 of the GMC-RU) for how to convert weapons from other books (like armoury)
- Sources of harm (Eg Car crash)
If it is replaced, then that section is clearly invalidated. Sometimes it writes replaces and updates.
Merits section from Core,
- also merits from any other book it draws merits from (Second Sight, Armoury, Armour Reloaded, Promethean Strange Alchemies (possibly others, no list is given)
- Further, any merit not printed in the God Machine rules update was explicit omitted intentionally.
- Changes include the Resources merit. Which means all Equiptment costs are potentially invalidated (In practice, it is trivial to just change cost to Availability though)
Flaws (partially replaced by conditions)
- Morality and Degeneration -- and thus also all derangements
- Extended Actions (btw the extended action rules pressented in the GM-RU are slightly differently presented in blood and smoke -- the confusing "Near Misses" section was removed.)
- Social actions
- Combat (both close and ranged)
- Ghosts (from Core)
- Spirits (From Book of Spirits and all other books)
Blood and Smoke
as per page 9
the books that it explicitly does not invalidate are:
The Clan Books:
- Ventrue: Lords Over the Damned
- Daeva: Kiss of the Succubus
- Gangrel: Savage and Macabre
- Mekhet: Shadows in the Dark
- Nosferatu: The Beast that Haunts the Blood
The (original) World of Darkness Core and the God Machine Rules Update are also listed in that section as something that could enhance the game
Both original core and the GMC-RU are referenced as providing additional examples on page 163.
The Original core is reference once on page 173. It is the section on Permutations (of Roll mechanics) 9 again etc. It says that only the most common are presented here.
No other books are referenced except Requiem for Rome and Danse Macabre in the special thanks. The fact that those books are mention in the "special thanks" but not in the book itself is telling. It indicates that while the authors found them useful, Players (and GMs) may not.
Thus making it clear that they are not compatible. and by extension, nothing else not mentioned is.
Everything else is invalidated. (Except the Clan Books and Damnation City)
How is Blood and Smoke Different from Original VtR?
Overall it is still quiet recognisable. Unlike the God Machine Rules update, each section is not annotated with which section it replaces, as Blood and Smoke is designed to be fully standalone. (Where as the GMC-RU is more of a giant errata, the piecewise changes almost the whole system (i belief for licensing reasons, it is presented as a Update rather than a new blue book).
Disciplines are still a thing, though all the discplines have had a bit of a tweak, from reordering, to combining of powers to some new different ones. Vigour, Resilience and Celerity are heavily reworked (Though keeping with the theme)
What it means to be a vampire is slightly different. For example:
Sunlight is less lethal, but its damage scales up with lower humanity and with higher blood potency (It will kill a neonate over like a hours, though that quickly ramps up.)
All weapons (not just bullets) do bashing to vampires -- this basically bring it inline with some of the changes to the combat system, as well as making some (different)sense (on the basis that a vampire doesn't need care if you stab it or shoot it, it wasn't using those organs anyway.)
All covenants now have ritual type, along the lines of Blood Crúac and Theban Sorcery.
However… House Ruling:
While technically almost all WoD books are no longer compatible. It is, in practice, possible to house rule to convert. How to do so varies on a case by case basis. However, there are some guidelines that I have found practicable. If you want to convert, I am sure you can work out your own if needed
For example, converting Merits: If it is a Merit that doesn't come in multiple dot ratings and is more than 1 dot, reduce its dot rating by 1. (So, Giant becomes 3 dots)
If it comes in multiple dot ratings but some of the dots are "empty" (e.g., there is no 1 or 3 dot version of Striking Looks), collapse those dots, removing them. (So, Striking Looks becomes rated at 1 and 2).
As I said, porting content is viable, but it will require a little work.
Conversion guides are coming out for all lines, as a chapter in a book. The Hunter conversion guide is out now as part of the book "Mortal Remains".