If you have been using World Anvil for a while, you may know of our family trees. They are extremely useful to keep track of your families, both in writing and gaming! However, family trees display the full family of your characters, not only blood relatives. And that’s where the bloodlines feature steps in! Read on, sweet Anvilite, and discover!

The information on this blog post might be outdated! Check the documentation for the most up-to-date information about this feature.

What are Bloodlines?

Bloodlines track all the blood relations of a spotlighted character or a spotlighted couple. So, our Family Trees show off five generations of a family from a spotlighted character. This includes children and grandchildren, siblings, spouses and partners, parents, grandparents and great grandparents.

But Bloodlines will show you the full family tree – parents of the spotlighted character and all the blood descendants. Those of you who’ve been wanting more branches on the family tree will find Bloodlines amazingly useful for worldbuilding. You’ll be able to track the entire dynasty, and see all the tree with the same blood relations —including extended family related by blood!

Check out the Codex for more information on using Family Trees.

How do I use them?

the button to copy bloodlines is under the family tree one

Scroll down the right panels and click the copy button!

Using Bloodlines is very simple. Start by adding character relationships as you normally would for a regular family tree, but click the Copy Bloodline Tree Embed button instead.

The button will copy a BBCode tag in your clipboard. Simply paste it anywhere, save the article, and view it to see the Bloodline magic! Speaking of magic… let’s see how you can use this in your setting!

Bloodlines for worldbuilding

Nobility, bloodline magic, hereditary conditions… there’s a bunch of different ways you can use Bloodlines in your setting, and it all depends on what you want to do with it!

Even though dynasties are the most obvious use of this feature, you don’t have to limit yourself in such a way! Bloodlines are very important in many settings and will influence the lives of all characters, regardless of their rank. For example, in the base Dungeons and Dragons 5e lore, sorcerers generally have magic abilities due to their bloodline. Other games, such as Vampire: The Masquerade give even more importance to bloodlines mechanically.

If you are a writer, you can also use them! Maybe you have a hereditary condition that was apparently cured but is now coming back in full strength? Bloodlines are a quick way to see the original carriers and the currently infected characters.

Are you using bloodlines in your world? Let us know how in the comments!