Information about Hunger in Vampire the Masquerade: Swansong, including how it accumulates and how to decrease it.
How Hunger Increases
As you use supernatural abilities (aka Disciplines) like Auspex, Celerity and Presence, you’ll generate Hunger. You’ll risk unleashing “the Beast” should your Hunger grow too high, an outcome that isn’t conducive with maintaining the Masquerade. That being the case, you’ll need to feed from time to time to lower your Hunger. The more you use supernatural abilities, the more Hunger you’ll generate, the more you’ll need to feed to offset this.
Your current Hunger is displayed on the top left of the screen via numerous magenta drops of blood. You can accumulate up to 12 Hunger at a time before caution restrains further use of any supernatural abilities, and since each such ability typically generates between two and four units of Hunger, you can only expect to use said abilities several times in a Scene before you need to feed.
How to Reduce Hunger
While the odd consumable can be found to reduce Hunger, most of the time you’ll need to seek out a living victim to feast on their blood to reduce Hunger. The obvious source of blood is, of course, human prey, but there are some nuances to keep in mind when hunting humans.
You cannot just attack and feed on random humans. You must have discovered a Safe Room to lure a potential victim to, limiting the number of humans you can feed off of to the number of Safe Rooms available in a scene at the absolute maximum.
Not all humans are potential targets. Victims you can feed on are marked by a red blood drop icon.
Feeding on a human victim can arouse Suspicion. The more people who witness you luring an eventual victim to a Safe Room, the higher the Suspicion (around 5 Suspicion per witness).
If you completely drain a victim while feeding, they’ll die. This will generate 15 Suspicion.
Each human victim you feed on can slake 7 points of Hunger or more, depending on how many people you’ve fed on and hence how much you’ve increased Talents like Controlled Hunt or Beastly Hunt, although with caution you’ll usually only remove 6 points of Hunger, assuming you don’t want to kill your victim. You cannot feed on the same human a second time without killing them, so be sure to get the most out of your prey the first time around.
When humans aren’t available, you can always resort to feeding on rats. Rodents aren’t a very sophisticated source of food, but they will reduce Hunger by about 2-4 points per rat. If you’re seen feeding on rats, however, you’ll accrue Suspicion - around 2 points per rat. It’s safe, but removes less Hunger, and you don’t need a Safe Room to feed on rats.
Effects of High Hunger
While the game won’t let you go berserk by getting your Hunger too high, your Hunger level still influences some aspects of gameplay. Specifically, if you’ve no Hunger built up you’ll have a better chance of succeeding at Psychology ties and a worse chance at succeeding at Intimidation ties. If you have some - but under half - Hunger, there’s no modifier to either, and if you’re Hungry (your Hunger meter is over half full) you’ll gain a better chance at succeeding at Intimidate ties and a worse chance at succeeding at Psychology ties.
|0||+10% success rate in Psychology tie, -10% success rate in Intimidate tie.|
|1 - 6||None.|
|7 - 12||+10% success rate in Intimidate tie, -10% success rate in Psychology tie.|
There are four talents associated with Hunger, namely with your feeding habits. Every time you prey on a human but don’t kill them, you’ll gain a rank in Controlled Hunt, while if you kill a human victim you’ll gain a rank in Beastly Hunt. If you feed on a rat you’ll gain a rank in Rat Eater, and if you abstain from feeding at all during a scene you’ll gain a rank in Ascetic.
Ascetic has only two ranks, boosting your maximum Hunger each time you rank up in it. Controlled Hunt and Rat Eater both have 12 ranks, while Beastly Hunt has only 9 ranks. Hitting various ranks in these talents will earn you bonuses, typically boosting the amount of Hunger you eliminate when you feed, reducing Suspicion generated from feeding, improved Resonance bonuses or a slower cursor speed while playing the feeding minigame, presumably helping ensure you achieve the result you want.
These bonuses aren’t significant, but if you have an opportunity to feed (or abstain, depending on your goal) without raising Suspicion, you may as well do so before finishing a scene. No sense letting talent bonuses go to waste.
|Talent||Rank 1||Rank 2||Rank 3||Rank 6||Rank 9||Rank 12|
|Ascetic||+2 maximum Hunger||+1 maximum Hunger||-||-||-||-|
|Controlled Hunt||-||-||+1 Hunger eliminated||-50% cursor speed||-||+1 Hunger eliminated|
|Beastly Hunt||-||-||+50% resonance bonus||+1 Hunger eliminated||+1 Hunger eliminated||-|
|Rat Eater||-||-||+1 Hunger eliminated||-50% Suspicion generated||-||+1 Hunter eliminated|