Sunday, February 25, 2024

OSR: Vampire Class 2.0

A long time ago, I made a playable Vampire class.  I was very proud of it at the time, but it hasn't aged well.  This is a new version, much improved.  

“Nightwalking men always have a hunger on them [...] They never stop taking and they don't know about enough. They mortgaged their souls away and now they eat and eat and never know how to stop.”

- Grady Hendrix, The Southern Book Club's Guide to Slaying Vampires

Starting HP: 1/3 Con
Fighting Spirit: +2 FS per Vampire level
Atk Modifier: +1 per level (max +5)
Starting Equipment: Casual clothes, coat, vial or bag of blood, dark glasses, false wax teeth (to hide your fangs), club or dagger

Sanguine Thirst, Bite, Blood Points, Degeneration
Sensory Enhancement, Predator's Stare, Sunlight Sensitivity 
Regeneration, Blood Resonance
Preternatural Speed, Sunlight Vulnerability
Inhuman Strength
Cessation of Concern, Coffin Home, Immortal Heart
The Long March, Prince of the Dark
Banquet of Blood, Injury Unmade, Perpetual Sleep
Undying Thirst


Sanguine Thirst: You hunger for Blood.  You gain the Conviction, "I thirst for blood."  Whenever you are presented with an opportunity to consume blood, you must successfully save to resist.  Each day you go without drinking blood, you gain a -1 penalty to your save.  If this penalty ever equals or exceeds your COG score, you automatically fail.  If you still haven't drank any blood, you fall into a coma.  You will remain in this coma for X days, where X is your CON modifier.  Should you receive no blood within that time, you die.  

Bite: You grow a quartet of fangs, two on the upper jaw and two on the lower.  These fangs grant you a Bite Attack that does 1d6 damage and allows you to drain blood from a creature.  However, because of their vulnerable place, you make Bite attacks at disadvantage except against opponents who are restrained, grappled or otherwise helpless.  

Blood Points: Whenever you consume blood, you can drain 1 HD per round.  If you reduce a creature to 0 HD using this method, it dies.  When drinking blood, you must make a saving throw to break off and stop.  When you consume blood, you gain +X Blood Points, or BP, where X is the amount of HD you drained from a creature.  You can spend Blood Points to assuage your Thirst for the day, as consuming a blood point counts the same as drinking blood.  You can store a number of BP equal to your CON score.  

Degeneration: Vampirism is a progressive disease.  If you don't exercise discipline, it can ruin you entirely.  Depending on your background or whatever you did before becoming a Vampire, you start with a number of Corruption Counters (CC).  See the Soul Purity table below for your starting amount of CC.  Whenever you lose control of your thirst and lash out as a result of 'Sanguine Thirst', consume blood sufficient to equal twice your total BP capacity, or do something sufficiently heinous (Referee's Discretion applies), you gain 1d3 Corruption Counters.  These cause effects based on the Vampiric Corruption table (see below).  


Sensory Enhancement: By spending 1 BP, you can enhance one of your senses, gaining advantage on any checks or saves based on that sense for 1 minute.  However, if exposed to a powerful stimulus that affects an enhanced sense, you must save or be stunned.  

Predator's Stare: You can make your eyes change into Hunter's Eyes as a free action.  If you meet the eyes of a human or another creature that Vampires preyed on extensively in the past, that creature must save or be frightened of you.  Creature frightened this way lose their next action as they freeze- an involuntary fear response to facing a predator.  Creatures that pass their saves may act as normal.

Sunlight Sensitivity: Your skin and eyes become sensitive to direct sunlight.  You have disadvantage on all checks and saves made in direct sunlight.  


Regeneration: By spending Blood Points, you can heal from injuries.  As an action, you can spend BP to heal 1d4 HP per BP spent.  You can also use BP to repair Horrible Wounds.  For each BP spent, you can reduce a Horrible Wound by 1.  

Blood Resonance: The blood of mortals is tinged with the emotions and feelings of the state they were in prior to feeding.  

Mortals that were angry or enraged have blood filled with vigor, for one hour after feeding off them you gain +1 to STR checks and saves, as well as to Atk and Damage rolls.

Mortals who were sad or miserable have blood filled with shadow and sorrow, for one hour after feeding on them you gain +2 to DEX checks and saves, as well to attempts to sneak and hide.

Mortals who were excited, aroused or happy have blood filled with light and warmth, for one hour after feeding on them you gain +3 to CHA checks and saves, as well as to rolls made to seduce, charm or flatter.  


Preternatural Speed: You can move at unnatural speed.  By spending BP, you can accelerate your natural rate of movement.  For each BP spent, you add +X to DEX checks and saves, Defense rolls and Pursuit rolls.

Sunlight Vulnerability: Sunlight sears your flesh.  Each round you begin in direct sunlight you take 1d6 radiant damage.  


Supernatural Strength: You can enhance your strength.  For each BP spent, you add +1 to STR checks and saves, Attack and Damage rolls.  

Scion of the Dark: You are recognized by other creatures of darkness as one of them.  Undead, Ghosts and other things that prowl the shadows will treat you as an ally unless you prove otherwise.  


Cessation of Concern: Your mortal body's needs diminish.  If you spend a Blood Point, you do not need to eat or drink.  

Coffin Home: If you need to, you can willingly slip into a torpor like state where your consumption of blood is extremely slow.  While in this hibernation state, you consume 1 BP every 3+CON score months.  You can be awakened from this state by fresh blood- otherwise you will wake when your supply of BP is down to less than your COG modifier.  

Immortal Heart: If your heart is pierced or has something driven through it, as long as that obstruction remains, you will fall into the torpor-like state as described in "Coffin Home".  When your heart is pierced, you consume blood at a rate of four times more slowly than you would if you had entered that state of torpor willingly.  However, unless the object piercing your heart is removed, you cannot reawaken.    


The Long March: You become a true Undead.  You no longer need food, water, sleep or air.  You do not age and cannot age.  You become immune to cold, necrotic and poison damage.  You no longer need anything but blood to sustain yourself.  

Prince of the Dark: When faced with creatures of Darkness, such as Undead, Ghosts, or other creatures given over to the Powers of Darkness (Referee's Discretion applies) you can attempt to charm such creatures as an action.  Such creatures, if they do not already serve a dark master and fail a save, will recognize your power and accept you as their new Lord.  Charmed creatures will be loyal to you, though they will not accept suicidal or commands they believe to be foolish, unless you can phrase them intelligently, and will remain your servants as long as they aren't abused or endangered too much.  You can have a number of Charmed servants equal to 2*Level in HD.  

Each time you do something that negatively affects your servants in a way that isn't unavoidable or inevitable, they get a new save.  On a successful save, they realize they're getting a bad deal and might either desert you or remain as secret traitors, waiting for an opportunity to stab you in the back.    


Banquet of Blood: You can now have up to 2*CON score BP stored with you.

Injury Unmade: Your Regeneration now heals 1d6 HP per BP spent.  You can also heal Horrible Wounds by 1d4 per BP spent.  

Perpetual Sleep: If you fall into a torpor like state due to lack of blood, see "Coffin Home", you can remain in that hibernation state indefinitely with no negative consequences.  You will still consume blood while in this state, but it will be much slower.  As such, you will always awake with 1 BP, regardless of the amount of time that has passed.


Undying Thirst: You gain a Specific Death Condition.  Unless destroyed via immolation by sunlight or by one of the conditions below, you will not die.  Roll 1d6 to determine the only other way you can be killed.  If you receive a result that would kill another character, you instead fall into a death-like state that is seemingly identical to death.  You, however, can be revived by a drop of fresh blood, which will cause you to reanimate at 1 HP with no Horrible Wounds.  However, after being revived, you will have disadvantage on all rolls and have all your ability scores reduced by half.  Only time and consumption of blood will enable you to recover your full strength.    

Besides through sunlight, you can only be killed by...

1- Staking you through the heart, ripping out your fangs, then burying you in a silver-lined coffin.  
2- Removing the head, removing your heart and stuffing your neck-stump with garlic and thyme.  
3- Cutting your body into four pieces, burning it to ash and scattering those ashes at a crossroads.
4- Crucifying you and draining you of all your blood, then once you stop moving, casting you into a mighty river.
5- Impaling you with a stake made from a hawthorn tree and burying your corpse in holy ground.
6- Cutting you down with a holy weapon and having a virtuous soul sacrifice themselves by burning themselves alive on a pyre with your corpse.  

Some Notes on Vampires:

Vampirism is a sexually transmitted disease.  You can catch Vampirism by having sex with a Vampire or exchanging bodily fluids with one.  Letting a Vampire drink your blood straight from the source is also a good way to catch the disease.  Health conscious or non-selfish Vampires will have their food sources bleed into goblets or vessels and then drink from those.  

Vampires can see their reflections in mirrors, unless those mirrors are silver.  Most mirrors in the 21st century are not made using silver, so they work on Vampires just fine.  

Vampires are not repelled by garlic, they just hate strong smells and pungent odors.  Vampires love eating garlic in front of people to scare the crap out of them.  

Vampires aren't inherently evil.  But becoming a Vampire is often the result of evil actions.  Additionally, as Vampires can live for a very long time, spending decades or centuries seeing other humans as food will definitely warp your sense of morality over time.  That being said, the transition from human to Vampire depends on the condition of the afflicted's soul.  See below.  

Vampires have to eat and drink and do everything humans when they are young, but as they age they lose their other needs until they require only blood.

by Manzanedo
Vampire Progression:

Vampires usually develop their abilities over long periods of time.  

However, not all Vampires can survive long-term.  The oldest Vampires call themselves the Purebloods, but this is a bit of a bitter joke on their part.  The truth is that Vampirism is a disease that does not target the body, but the soul.

Over time, depending on a Vampire's behavior, he can slowly erode his soul until he degenerates into a mindless beast called a Strigoi.  Strigoi are like Vampires, but they have lost all reasoning functions.  They are essentially animals, little smarter than dogs.  As such, Strigoi can vary in strength as they still possess the abilities they did when a Vampire, but lack the intelligence to use them as effectively, relying instead on muscle memory and brute instinct.  They also cannot use the Kindred Arts, if they knew how before they degenerated into a Strigoi. 

Strigoi tend to not survive very long once they are created through the degeneration of a Vampire, as their only drive is to feed and survive.  As such, it is very easy to trick them with a trap that a Vampire would never fall for, or for them to pursue prey into a situation that they cannot survive.  Even if neither of those scenarios occur, a Strigoi can still starve to death if it ends up trapped in a place it cannot easily escape without blood.  

While most Vampires are disturbed by Strigoi, some choose to make use of them.  If you know how, Strigoi are easily tamed and controlled by a more powerful Vampire.  As they are incredibly limited, Strigoi do grow stronger over time like Vampires, but it takes them much longer.  

Additionally, after a sufficient amount of time, a Strigoi will accept a Vampire's leadership as natural and inevitable and remain loyal, even if the Strigoi one day becomes as powerful as the Vampire.  And even should the Strigoi rebel, a Vampire has countless other options that a Strigoi simply does not, as while a Strigoi can be strong and fast and tough to kill, a Vampire is so much more than a beefy predator. 

Consult the tables below to see how you a Vampire degenerates and the effects it has on you.

by PhuThieu1989
Vampire Society:

Vampires don't call themselves Vampires- they referred to themselves as the Kin, the Kindred, the Embraced or the Gentle Beasts.  

Vampire Society is composed of Clans.  Each Clan is an authoritarian structure where elder Vampires reign over younger Vampires.  Clans vary in internal structure and ideology, and each impose different rules or restrictions on their members.  Generally, Clans also hoard magical secrets and dole them out to loyal members to keep them loyal.  However, generally Clans maintain a territory where they have dominion and maintain a stable of creatures, usually humans, that they keep for food.  These humans are technically part of the Clan as well, though whether they are property or lesser members depends on the Clan.

Vampires lose their ability to change and adapt as they age.  Younger Vampires have the same capacity as humans, while older ones find their minds gradually stiffening until they find themselves faced with an alien world that no longer aligns with the notions they believed and cherished while alive.  In time, this causes them to become alienated entirely from human society, until they can barely pass as anything other than a predator wearing a mask.  

This is most evident in the Ancients, the oldest living Vampires.  Some of these beings have been alive for centuries and barely acknowledge the changes that have engulfed the human world.  They distrust modern technology, don't understand contemporary culture and some are even dismissive of modern weaponry, as they remember a time when guns were crude and humans little more than scared rabbits running from the Kindred Wolves.  

Most Clans are not run by the Ancients, but by relatively young Vampires who were Embraced less than a century ago.  These Mature Vampires, or Midbloods (as they hate to be called), are still capable of interfacing with human society and technology, albeit not as well as younger Vamps.  These are the Vampires who puppeteer human endeavors, from corporations to crime families.  The Ancients have their own organizations that stretch back to antiquity in some cases.  The Mature, Fledglings and Newborns all fear the Ancients and the secret societies, cults and shadow governments that have persisted to the modern day.  

Vampire Ranking:

- Newborn: From 0 days to 1 year.
- Fledgling: From 1 year to 5 years.  
- Neophyte:  From 5 to 10 years.  
- Seasoned: From 10 to 30 years.  
- Mature: From 30 to 70 years.  
- Elder: From 70 to 150 years.  
- Ancient: From 150 years or up.       

Blood Arts:

The Blood Arts, also called the Kindred Arts, the Aristocratic Gift or Blood Magic for the crude is a method of casting magic for Vampires.  It does not come naturally as a result of being a Vampire, but must be learned.  These are mostly the purview of older Noble Vampires, who have had decades or centuries to master their powers and learn the limits of the Dark Kiss.  

How it works: A Vampire can spend BP like MD.  Each BP counts as 1 MD for the purpose of casting spells.  However, BP are always lost when used to cast magic.  Vampires can trigger Chaos or Corruption on Doubles or Triples respectively, but they cannot trigger Doom.  They are already damned, after all.  

Additionally, not all Vampire Nobles know all or even most of these arts, unless they are self-taught.  Many of the Blood Arts are the specific purview of specific Vampire lineages or Clans, who hoard their power and only share it with their own members.  That being said, these Arts are not tied to any specific clan and can be learned by those from outside.  It's just that those who are within a clan can benefit from all of the clan's knowledge including their years of testing, research and other theorizing on the use and applications of the Art.  
Random Blood Art:
1- Addictive Fluids: See below
2- Baptism of Blood: See below 
3- Beguiling Stare: As Charm Person
4- Blood Mastery: See below
5- Command the Unclean: See below
6- Create Servant: As Create Servant
7- Darkness: See below 
8- Enslave Undead: As Enslave Undead
9- Essence Rays: See below
10- Ethereal Beauty: See below
11- Face Dancer: See below
12- Freezing Touch: See below
13- Gaseous Form: See below
14- Hypnotic Eyes: As Hypnotic Laser
15- Invisibility: As Invisibility
16- Lordly Presence: As Baleful Charm
17- Pass without Trace: See below
18- Shadow Gate: See below
19- Spider Climb: As Spider Climb
20- Wild Shape: As Wild Shape

New Spells:

Addictive Fluids
R: touch T: creature D: [dice] hours

One creature's bodily fluids gain a mild anesthetic effect.  Creatures exposed to them take -[dice] damage from non-magical sources as their sense of pain is dulled.  

For each [dice] past the first, select one of the options below:
- The affected creature's bodily fluids gain a soporific effect.  Creatures exposed to them must save or enter a euphoric state.  This halves their movement and causes them to act last in initiative.
- The affected creature's bodily fluids gain a hallucinogenic effect.  Creatures exposed to them must save or suffer hallucinations for [dice] hours.  Unless the creature exposed to the fluids is scared or distressed, these hallucinations are pleasant and cheerful, especially if paired with a soporific effect.  
- The affected creature's bodily fluids gain a anti-coagulant effect.  Creatures exposed to them take 1d4 damage for 1d4 rounds after taking damage from sharp weapons.  Healing magic immediately ends this effect.   

Baptism of Blood
R: 10' T: creature D: special

One creature within range must save.  On a failed save, the creature falls under your control and becomes your servant.  If a creature has drunk your blood within the last hour, it makes the save at disadvantage.  While a creature is your servant, it will obey any order no matter how dangerous or insensible.  Additionally, as a free action on your turn, you can look through your servant's eyes and see and feel everything your servant is.  

However, maintaining this hold costs you.  For each day you maintain control of your servant, you must spend 1 BP.  If you fail to spend this amount, your hold over your servant breaks and it is free to do as it wishes.    

Blood Mastery
R: 30' T: [dice] sources of blood D: 2[dice] rounds

You gain command over [dice] sources of blood.  These can be anything from a creature that has open wounds to a pool of blood.  You can manipulate this blood, causing it to take the form of your choice.  A construct's form can be anything, from a horse to sword.  You can then direct these constructs of blood to act on your turn as a free action for the duration.  After the duration ends they transform back into harmless showers of blood.  

If you take blood from a creature, that creature must be below full HP or have an opening through which blood could exit (Referee's Discretion).  Drawing blood from a creature causes it to take [dice] damage.

Blood constructs each have HP equal to [sum] divided as the Wizard chooses among them.  All constructs must have at least 1 HP.  Constructs have Atk modifiers equal to +[dice] and do 1d6+[dice] damage on a hit.  Their Defense rolls are equal to their attack rolls.  Blood constructs can also revert to liquid form, but can still move while in this form.     

Command the Unclean
R: 100'          T: space within range.  D: [sum] minutes

You can summon [sum] HD worth of bats, rats, spiders, wolves or any corrupted creatures that you know of in the area (Referee's Discretion applies).  For creatures that are individually less than 1 HD, you summon a Swarm instead.  These creatures appear within a space you designate.  For the duration, these creatures obey your orders and act on your turn.  They will not obey any order that is suicidal or nonsensical.  After the duration ends they are free to act as they wish.  

R: 10*[dice]'    T: All the area within range    D: [sum] minutes

A cloud of thick darkness forms within range of the spell, emanating out from the caster.  This darkness is inky and impenetrable.  Dark-piercing sight cannot see through it.  All sources of light within the darkness are suppressed and masked until the darkness is dispelled or the source of light leaves it.  All light spells within this cloud automatically fail, unless they are cast with more [dice] than the caster of this spell used.

This spell cannot be used in natural sunlight.  If cast in a sunlit area, the darkness sizzles away like butter on a hot skillet. 

Essence Rays
R: 100' T: creature or object D: one action

You fire two jets of pressurized fluid out of your eyes.  These high-powered jets do 1/2[sum] damage, save for half, to anything they hit.  You can target up to two creatures or objects with this spell.  

Ethereal Beauty
R: touch T: creature D: [dice] minutes

One creature you touch gains the appearance of impossible beauty.  Creatures that are capable of recognizing beauty (creatures with souls or not from an alien universe) must save to take any hostile action against such the target of the spell.  Those who fail their save will want to just stare in awe, profess their love or furiously attempt to rationalize their feelings.  Creatures who are attracted to others of the race and sex of the affected creature have disadvantage on their save, while if they were attracted to the affected creature personally, they also take a -[sum] penalty to their saves.  Creatures have advantage on their saves if the affected creature has already taken a hostile action against them.    

Face Dancer
R: self        T: self            D: [dice] hours

You can change your face to look like a more beautiful version of your own, like the face of someone familiar to you, or something else entirely.  This change lasts for the duration or until you dismiss it.  This only changes your face, the rest of your body will still remain the same in appearance. 

Freezing Touch
R: touch T: creature D: one action

One creature you touch takes 1d6+[dice] ice damage and 2[dice] STR damage.  If this damage reduces a creature's STR by 1/4, it immobilizes one of the creature's limbs for [dice] minutes.  If this damage reduces a creature's STR by 1/2, it immobilizes 2 limbs.  If it reduces a creature's STR by 3/4, it immobilizes three limbs.  If it reduces a creature's STR to 0, it immobilizes the creature entirely for [dice] minutes.

Pass Without Trace
R: touch    T: [dice] creatures    D: [dice] hours

[dice] creatures you touch receive a bonus to their stealth.  If cast with 1 [dice], the affected creatures do not leave footprints or any sign they were in an area.  At 2 [dice], they receive a bonus of +[dice] to their stealth rolls and to checks made to avoid being spotted or detected.  At 3 [dice], they are invisible to any creatures more than 30' from them.  At 4 [dice], they cannot be detected by divination magic for the duration.  

Shadow Gate
R: touch T: A created Shadow Gate D: one action

You create a circle of power on a flat surface within range.  By touching this circle, you can cause it to become a portal that connects to any other circles of power you have created within range.  Depending on the amount of [dice] used to create it, the range of a circle of power can vary.  

With 1 [dice], it can connect to another circle within a building.  With 2 [dice], it can connect to any circle you have established within a small town or neighborhood.  With 3 [dice], it can connect to any other circle you have established within a city.  With 4 or more [dice], it can connect to any circle you have established within 2[sum] days of travel of the circle you are currently touching.

Circles of power created by this spell also do not last forever.  A circle created with 1 [dice] lasts for [sum] hours.  A circle created with 2 [dice] lasts [sum] days.  A circle created with 3 [dice] lasts [sum] weeks.  A circle created with 4 or more [dice] is permanent until dismissed by the caster.

by NikitaDmitriev