Thousand Year Old Vampire is an award winning solo journaling game designed by Tim Hutchings. In this horror game, you create your own vampire and explore themes of memory loss and the passage of time. The game has a unique storytelling system that is based on prompts. Every prompt modifies one of five traits (Memories, Skills, Resources, Characters, and Marks). This makes for an enjoyable and replayable experience. The game is 188 pages and has an evocative layout and design. I highly recommend this game!
Thousand Year Old Vampire
A downloadable game
THOUSANDYEAROLDVAMPIRE.COM to purchase PRINT COPIES
This darned game won three ENnie Awards and the Tabletop Design Award from Indiecade! How unlikely!
"One of the most critically acclaimed solo journaling games ever made..."
-Charlie L Hall, Polygon
A creaking hunter among dust and cobwebs, you prowl the night places, seeking the souls on which you feed. You have done this since time immemorial, or so you believe; you have no memories of living as a man-thing like those you catch and eat. But human traces linger; your fingers trace clever arabesques in the dirt of your grave-place and with the flourishes come whispered songs in a language you've forgotten. Far away, in a museum, hangs your portrait in oil by a master five hundred years dead--you might have been lovers but the diary you kept then is long lost.
Three Ennie Awards! Gold for Best Rules and Best Production Value and silver for Product of the Year. The Indiecade award from Tabletop Design!
188 fancy pages
play in a couple of hours or a couple of weeks
solo play, optional group play
Note: A non-graphic version of the rules text will be added as a download option, but probably not until summer. A single-page-per-page (not spreads) PDF will be available soon.
Buy the fancy print book at thousandyearoldvampire.com.
Twitter = @timhutchingsftw
In order to download this game you must purchase it at or above the minimum price of $15 USD. You will get access to the following files:
Support this game at or above a special price point to receive something exclusive.
These are free copies for folks who cannot or choose not to purchase a PDF. Please take one, no questions asked.
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got the physical, highly recommended.
I’ve heard about solo ttrpgs before, but was always on the fence. Through various YouTube videos and tik toks, I was finally convinced to try this game and it’s so good!
It was fun to roll for prompts and realize I could expand upon leads I didn’t even know I left in past memories. This was such an awesome game and I’m very thankful there are community copies available to try it out.
I highly recommend for anyone considering jumping into solo journaling games.
I'm excited to play this game--a commenter recommended it on a Youtube video about a different game called Delve. I googled this one and was sitting on the fence about getting a copy until I saw that there are community copies available for people who cannot afford it.
Instantly decided to buy and to pay extra as a thank you for that. I am so excited to try it and also show my friends too!
It really is magic that when I give stuff away for free that there are folks that step up and make it worth my while! So kind of you!
It is keeping me such good company.
I'm so glad to hear that! It's all part of the ruse.
The book starts out pleasant. It gives you a fun time, it listens to your stories, you watch tv together. It starts helping around the house and balancing your checkbook. Next thing you know it's wearing your favorite hat taking out a mortgage in your name.
With all your post it notes and things I briefly fooled myself with the drawn lines in the book!
and then you remembered it was part of the layout eheh?
(That's appropriate: my blog post is focused on the concept of reconstructed memories, because this is in my opinion one of the things we truly experience with this game) :)
I just want to thank you for offering community copies-- I ordered a physical copy from a Canadian reseller so it didn't come with a PDF but I was absolutely itching to play it in the meantime. You rock!
My trust in Tim Hutchings is completely gone. The Companion Volume's description was a mystery, and my passion for mysteries together with my trust in a company allowed my conscience to pre-order.
The book is empty pages.. for $71 incl shipping.
The mystery is an expensive scam and anyone saying the consumer is a fool, is fooled by this creators sense of humor and explanation it's a "work of art". A waste of chopped trees and climate.
Looks like someone didn't read the description where he literally said not to buy it.
"This book, to be absolutely clear, is not useful. It is, I believe, worthwhile but don't forget, friends, that I am an idiot. My worthwhile might be your bitter disappointment. In fact, it most likely is. "
You got a product that was exactly as described.
well, may be I would have bought it if TH had really explained that it was an empty book, but certainly not for 71$.
The trick TH used, like "don't buy it, I am a fool" is clearly there to confuse the gamer inside us, and all those who, like me, loved -"TYOV",and wanted to support it.
May be I am too naive, but I also feel like I have been the idiot of this story, and that I have bought TYOV for 150$.
Congrats to Tim, you really know how to manipulate people's mind.
ps: sorry for my English, I am a french idiot.
Okay, weird questions here. Under Diaries, it says that you cannot add any more experiences in the memory that is in the diary. I'm a little confused.
Can you add partially filled Memories to a Diary? Can I put a Memory with 2 Experiences in the Diary, knowing that it takes up one of the Diary's four available Memory slots?
When you put a memory in the Diary, does that reduce the number of memories you can have?
For example, if I fill three of my Memories with Experiences, and I decide to put those three Memories in a Diary, do I now have 5 empty and open Memory slots again, or do I only have two Memory slots left because the other three are held in the Diary?
If the latter is the case, does the destruction or loss of the Diary free up those Memory slots?
Thanks in advance!
You can put a partially filled Memory into a Diary, but you can't add more Experiences to that Memory after you do so.
When you put a Memory into a Diary your character functionally forgets it. That Memory slot is now free for all new Memories, the Memory that was there is now a Diary entry.
You should only be putting Memories into a Diary when you are out of Memory slots. Don't casually add three Memories to a Diary, that's just not the way the game is supposed to work mechanically.
Does this help?
Yes! Thank you. That's how I felt it was supposed to work because that fits so well thematically. But then "gamer brain" took over and I started to overthink it.
Thanks again, Tim.
Gamer brain is the worst until it becomes the best and you accidentally make a new game! The best thing about TYOV is that it's resilient, you can't really break it by messing up small things. Or even big things.
hi. The POD option seems to have disappeared of DTRPG.
But I have found a 2nd Print version in the UK, so thats cool.
On thousandyearoldvampire.com you have 3rd print run copies. Is there any difference from the 2nd printing?
Something went screwy with the DTRPG version so I made it unavailable and never bothered to fix it. It was only there to help out folks overseas who couldn't afford shipping, with UK and other options now it's less of an issue.
3rd printing is identical to 2nd. 2nd is slight improvement on 1st.
This game got me started playing solo RPGs. I love it so much. The book is gorgeous. I’m so happy to just flip through it. I’ve played this a few times and every time it went in a new and weird direction.
I, the creator, have played this innumerable times and haven't yet felt it was reptetititiitve.
Hi Tim, I recently bought the print copy of TYOV. I thought I'd get a pdf via email, which, barring a confirmation of the order, I'd thought of as a confirmation. I haven't received the email yet. Is there a different way to confirm the order?
I want to say first, that I truly think this a fantastic game and hope to see more of your games in the future.
But I would like some clarity on the rules.
This probably has been answered somewhere in this huge comment section, but I'm a bit confused with this rule.
Am I suppose to start with the very first prompt, or am I suppose to role the dice first and then from prompt one, move to the actual first prompt of the game?
I know in one version that the rules say, Start at prompt one, but the 2nd printing says, start counting at prompt one. I don't know, maybe I'm just misinterpreting the rule, but I'd rather ask you for clarity.
I've been playing games where I rolled first and then moved to another prompt and then that new prompt would be my first, but if you're meant to start the game with the very first prompt, I can try that out. I just always thought of the first prompt to be the hardest to start with since you're forced at the start to essentially kill off a mortal and get bloodthirsty.
But anyways, sorry for this long comment, but I'm hoping to get some further clarity on the rules.
You roll and start counting from Prompt 1.
Similarly to Snorklebob's request below, could you add a plain text version for Itchio's customers?
As much as I love the graphical presentation (amazing work, really), I find the PDF cumbersome to use at times, mostly due to slow loading (my PC is, well, not a thousand years old, but it's getting long in the tooth!)
Wait! When you download here you don't get a .zip file with multiple versions of TYOV in it?
When hitting download, I'm sent to a page with two versions: ThousandYearOldVampire_2ndPrinting_Spreads.pdf (Aug 21 2020) and ThousandYearOldVampire_2ndPrinting_SinglePagesVer1p21.pdf (Sept 14 2020).
No sign of a third version! Am I missing something? I double checked my purchase email and it just sends me back there.
OH MY GOSH! I dunno what happened but I think it's fixed now.
It is indeed! Thanks!
(sidenote: I've tried to speed PDF loading up and found that converting into a pure image-based PDF is a good balance between aesthetics and usability)
I recently purchased the PDF and print version and both are great! Are there still plans to do a non-graphic version of the rules?
The zip where you got the PDF should also have a plaintext version! Let me know if it's not there.
Hi Tim! Was playing my first game with a woodworker in Italian Renaissance, when I got a prompt saiyng that a enemy used a lost resource to turn friends against me. Problem is that up to this point of the game I haven't lost any, so I'm a bit unsure of how to progress. Should I strike out a resource in this same prompt and use it or invent some object that maybe had a connection with me in the past?
In a case like this you can just make up a lost resource. "My mother's amethyst pendant, long forgotten, now hangs around the neck of the young queen; whoever did this knew it would drive me mad, and now I have both the pendant and a midnight regicide to my name–I am hunted."
Hi Tim! First off, I just want to say that TYOV is fantastic. One of the best experiences I've had in gaming!
I had a question: In my copy under the "Diary" section (p. x) it says that "A Diary can hold up to four of your vampire's Memories." However, both the Play Examples and the provided character sheet say that a Diary can only hold up to three total Memories. What are your thoughts on this, is it three or four?
Yeah, that's a mistake all right! I think four is the better number.
Good afternoon! I pre-ordered Thousand Year Old Vampire + Secret Companion Book at April 15th, but still didn't get my PDF copy of the base game. Can we fix it? I'll be thankful for your assistance.
Sure! Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Hi there I just finished my first game this afternoon and talking about an emotional rollercoaster. This is a very good game. It had me really stuck for a while in one of the journal entries and what to do. I went with the flow and unstuck myself by asking "What would a thousand-year-old vampire do about x?"
I can see why it won an award and how it can be played over and over. Thanks Tim for designing a great game.
I'm glad you enjoyed the game!
I worry that it's easy to get stuck. I play a lot of games that require on the fly thinking and my brain has gotten oily and well trained for that sort of stuff. TYOV walks a tricky path and sometimes I worry that the prompts are too specific, sometimes not specific enough.
That's probably more a product of me thinking really hard about the question and the situation resonated with me rather than the quality of your work. I think it's top-notch so I wouldn't try to think about them being too much or too little specific. Each person playing the game will read the prompts through their own lenses and process the prompts through their experiences. Which why I think the game is great. My bestie has the game too, so we compare the answers we each got after the fact.
A tense, evocative experience - Thousand Year-Old Vampire is a thrilling experience that asks you to create a dazzling, decrepit world, and tear it apart, bit by bit. A beautiful tragedy.
Hi Tim, I bought a hardcover copy of TYOV from a FLGS and was wondering if you could hook me up with the PDF? I can provide you a receipt, of course. Thanks!
Yes! Please take on of the Community Copies here on itch. I am making an unlimited number of them available, so you aren't denying anyone by taking one.
Hey Tim, just wanted to know if there was any update on Andy Action and whether they'd been snowed out for a little bit, or an estimate of when they might be getting things shipped. I haven't received a shipping email yet so I just wanted to check-in. Thanks for your help!
If your order hasn't shipped as of Friday then it will this coming week. Email me at email@example.com with your order number and all that if you have doubts.
Afternoon Tim, I bought two physical copies on Wednesday, but did not note a link to the pdf in the text purchase confirmation. I sent an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org asking about this on Wednesday and again on Friday when I received no response.
Any assistance would be appreciated as my friends birthday is today and I'd like to give them the pdf to look through until the physical books arrive.
Thank you for your time and assistance.
Did I ever email you back from dearleadergame?
Hi Tim. Any chance to get a print version in Europe? I'm being told it won't ship to my address, and the PoD isn't up as far as I can tell.
The "can't ship" thing was a Shopify error that should be fixed. This book will 100% ship to Europe.
I'm trying to purchase the physical copyThousand Year Old Vampire from the website that you have linked but when I get to check out, the website says that no one ships to my location. I am in Texas so, I was confused.
I bet you put the pwyw pin in the cart, right? There's some sort of shopify error around the pin. Try it again now.
I'm having the same issue. I only have the physical book in my cart and it's telling me it can't ship to my california address.
Didn't have the pin in my cart, tried it again and still didn't work for whatever reason.
It was a Shopify error. I think, THINK, I fixed it.
I bought the PDF version and very much enjoyed playing your game. I am an experienced freelance translator and I would like to translate the book.
Please shoot me a message here or on my gmail (which is my nickname here +@googlemail.com) if you think this would be interesting or if you have questions.
Could you possibly add bookmarks to one or both of the PDFs? It'd make it much easier to navigate.
That's a pretty reasonable request. I'll put it on a list but it won't happen anytime soon–I'm worn out.
What sections do you actually want to see bookmarked?
I'm not sure but I *think* the average joe with the free Adobe PDF Reader can put in our own bookmarks. I ended up putting some in myself while playing online with some other folks for the first time:
- Vampire Creation
- Playing the Game
- The Prompts
- Appendix Five—Group Play
- Play Examples
And that's all I needed. (Apologies in advance if I'm mistaken; I do happen to have Acrobat Pro DC through my company, but I swear I've done bookmarks even with the free version in the past.)
Is there a "best way" to print the pdf copy? I'm super excited to get started.
With the PDF you should have both spreads and single sheets. You can tell some printing software to take the single page PDF and print it as a booklet which you can then try to staple.
BUT: Try playing off of the computer! It's 188 pages or so to print and that's too much and just not necessary.
I was planning on buying the PDF and then saw your note re: near and bought the print version of "Vampire" instead. Thank you for taking a stand.
I've got the book version, which I love, but I really wanted to have physical sheets to write down my character's skills, memories, possessions, etc. I found the section at the back too little, so I made a pdf that other people can use too! But I don't know how to make it available, so I'll try here.
BOTTOM LINE UP FRONT: BEST GAME, BEST CUSTOMER SERVICE
One of the best games I have in my collection. Not only does this game flow and breathe with the concept, giving new life to what is a somewhat stale monster these days, this game is all about that sense of what you lose when you gain immortality.
I used this game to fill in a critical gap of a timeline in my world, and not only did it do an amazing job, it gave me many tendrils to explore as the world evolved around the four vampires in question and gave me impressive villains to use for any encounter. I already knew their motivation and I could tailor an encounter to fit in their timeline perfectly.
However, I have to say Tim offers 5-star customer service, and this is coming from a customer service representative. Not only was he constantly keeping us in the loop about updates, but he was also willing to get a replacement for me when I was afraid my physical copy went missing. Thanks to his openness to do so, I felt at ease and knew I would have something in my hands sooner rather than later.
Luckily, USPS is still completely untrustworthy, but they did deliver and it made me feel better to know I could let him off the hook for their mistake in poor communication.
The book, both in digital and physical form, is a prized possession and one I go to often when I am world-building. If you need a great game, this is the one for you. Get your hands on this immediately!
I got my physical book in the mail today, ahead of my expectations!!! It's a lovely piece of work. Not everything about 2020 has been bad!
I just received my print copy and it is gloriously beautiful. Thank you.
Hi! I bought the book version back in June and have never gotten shipping confirmation or tracking or anything. When will my book ship?
Oh no! Email me at email@example.com.
Hi! I bought the book version for a friend, and then thought of another who would love this game. I bought the PDF as it was too close to xmas, and have a confirmation email, but they say they never got the email? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Not sure if this is the best place to post but if any ones in Winnipeg, MB and wants to do a group order to save on shipping let me know.
Hello, any store's in Canada carry your book? I see Boardgamebliss.com had it but they are now sold out.
I'm not sure. I sort of lose track.
Hey guys, this might not be the best platform to ask about this, but does anyone know anything about the second print edition? I ordered my copy on backerit, and didn’t receive any updates since the payment confirmation, so I don’t even know if it’s even ready or already out for delivery. I’m not bothered by having to wait for shipping or whatever, some info would be nice though, if available. Thanks in advance
This is a fine place! Go and dig through the spam folder on whatever email you used to order. I've been sending out Mailchimp emails to the folks whose orders are delayed.
Basically: Half the orders went through a fulfillment company that is refusing to do their job. They've had the books since Nov 2 and haven't fulfilled ANY of the pre-orders. I'm taking steps to move the books to a different shipper--if that goes absolutely smoothly some folks might start receiving books at the end of December. Realistically expect yours in January.
I'm so unhappy about this that I have a hard time keeping up with the emails from folks who aren't getting the mailchimp blasts. I hope to catch up with all that this coming week.
Oof, that's rough. I came here to ask the same question because I haven't gotten any emails either. Thank you for the answer. I hope it all gets sorted soon!
I need to figure out how to communicate with folks that aren't getting MailChimp emails. I myself don't get mailchimp emails and nearly missed out on the IndieCade award because of it.
Yesterday I had the brainstorm of setting up an 'away from office' reply on the main email that gives a summary of the situation. Most of the folks who are emailing me are going to be emailing me because they fit the category of 'don't get the MailChimp' and 'want info about their books'.
I haven't found any MailChimp emails, not sure if Google eats them. :) I am a little disappointed it will only come in January, as I was hoping this could be a gift. (Now I have to find something to replace it for my wife, she said don't worry about it but that's a trap!)
I just discovered this communication forum. Please ignore my email asking essentially the same questions. Also note, emails are nowhere to be found in Gmail.
I just went to buy the the Hard Copy version being sold at thousandyearoldvampire.com. That site does not have a secure connection (HTTPS) for the payment info and so credit card info is being sent in the clear to an unverifiable site. I bailed out of the transaction and will wait until I can purchase a hard copy from somewhere that will protect my personal data and credit card info.