The damage system is simple, but is a death spiral (the more damage you take the more difficult it is to avoid further damage). This is a very gritty mechanic, and one that promotes cautious play.
The coarseness of the scale (only seven health levels), means that the difference between hardly damaged and nearly dead are very close together. This can make the process of taking damage or receiving healing very jarring and sudden. Vampires and other creatures with rapid healing can jump up and down the health scale extremely rapidly, leading to some truly bizarre behaviour.
In general, while the health system supports the "simulation" that the world of darkness attempts to provide, it is not very good from a mechanic perspective when taking balance or ease of play into account.
Josh is more then capable of fighting his own battles. Even so:
This is the kind of input I have been asking for.
Now for me to try to counter:
A game cannot really be storytelling based, as that would mean the GM just reads a story to the players. What storytelling in a gameplay aspect means is writing your own stories, which can be done with any system
Unfortunately, your definition here is incorrect according to the terminology of generally accepted roleplaying theory.
A "Story Game" is a game wherein the mechanics of the system support and enforce the creation of a particular kind of story through play.
The relative "story-ness" of a specific game operates on a wide spectrum. Games such as "The Mountain Witch", "Houses of the Blooded" and "Dogs in the Vineyard" cluster around the "more story" end, while other games like "Spirit of the Century" and "Burning Wheel" are closer to the middle.
The world of darkness games cluster at the far end of the spectrum in the "less or no story-based mechanics" area. They are specifically designed NOT to have any mechanics that enforce a particular brand of story, as that would take away from the simulated world that they are trying to create.
The game is actually amazingly simple in my experience. I taught it to my 8 year old cousins in under an hour, took me 2 hours to teach them D&D
Your relative skill in explaining mechanics to eight-year-olds is irrelevant to this discussion.
If you generalized too "the storyteller system is less complex then D&D" I might agree with you. I might not. They both have very simple basic mechanics that are obfuscated by vast lists of exceptions.
Your going to have to give an example on how it tells you to run your story, because I have a hard time seeing those things.
If you are looking for a story, read a book by a professional author.
Or play a Story Game.
Judging by your dismissive comments I would hazard a guess that you have never -played-, nor read, a story game.
If this is the case, you might want to check one of them out. They are very good.
The middle sections are quite childish, but that doesn't effect gameplay
... but that doesn't excuse their childish nature.
The social mechanic piece is just bad. Forcing your players to do something detracts from their fun, the social mechanics are easily usable and the characters can be convinced or threatened to do something
This entire section is patently untrue.
I believe you are speaking from an uninformed position. The systems that contain social mechanics that define character action by their outcome are often cited as being -more- fun then those which do not, especially for players of characters with social abilities.
Do try one out if you get the chance. "Burning Wheel" has gotten a lot of play from the Gameologists, but "Houses of the Blooded" has a similarly excellent social system.
You are also incorrect in saying that characters can be convinced or threatened in the World of Darkness games. Dice can be rolled, yes, but the outcome is entirely at the discretion of the Storyteller, and even in those rare circumstances where there are mechanics (I believe werewolf has stare-down rules) they are limited to binary success/fail results. There are no mechanics for compromise and no systems to enforce player action based on the success or failure of social rolls.
The only way to mechanically convince another character of something is to use some kind of magic.