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Offline Veretrix

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Vampire PCs
« on: August 08, 2015, 08:56:04 AM »
I think we can all agree that if one PC in a party became a fully-fledged vampire in most fantasy RPG settings, they would be OP beyond belief. But what if they were all vampires (and the template was nerfed)?

What I have in mind is a campaign where the players will make their characters as normal, but as soon as the game starts, I will simply say, "Alright, all of you open your eyes. You memory is extremely foggy, so you don't remember how you got here. The small stone room is lit by one single torch and the light flickers all over and around your pale skin. You all feel very hungry, but oddly enough, it doesn't feel as though normal food will satisfy you. The strangest thing of all, though, is that you can't feel your heart beating. Everyone add the vampire template to your characters."

Now understand that my intention is a nerfed template in the sense that you "unlock" some vampiric powers (from the template or homebrew) as you grow. The only things they'll probably start with are basic undead traits, Darkvision, +2 Strength, +2 Charisma, and the ability feed and create vampire spawn. As the vampaign (puns :D) progresses, the PCs will choose whether to embrace their newfound vampirism or oppose it and loathingly live until they are killed or can find a cure.

Offline axlerowes

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Re: Vampire PCs
« Reply #1 on: August 08, 2015, 11:49:04 AM »
That is some heavy handed GMing there.  Which works for some groups.  Does your  groups fall more on the Game side or the Collective Story Telling Side?

Offline Veretrix

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Re: Vampire PCs
« Reply #2 on: August 08, 2015, 12:24:02 PM »
That is some heavy handed GMing there.  Which works for some groups.  Does your  groups fall more on the Game side or the Collective Story Telling Side?
One player is really good role player and usually makes pretty interesting characters. The other two lean more towards the game side, but I've been gently pushing them in the direction of role playing over the last months, and they are getting better at it. If I did this, I definitely want to make sure they can role play to a decent level, or else they'll probably just run around goalless and feeding on anyone that walks by them every night.

Offline Strolen

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Re: Vampire PCs
« Reply #3 on: August 08, 2015, 08:19:14 PM »
I don't suggest that. Have them all attack and actually DIE. Kill them. TPK!!!! Total Party Kill. Make it epic and make it close but beat them fair and square (by faking rolls and making stuff up if you need to). Spin them up and piss them off. Make them write 0 on their character sheets and tease them.

Then stop them when they start to get too far gone and roll the dice a couple times and have one of them open their eyes in whatever scenario you want.

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Offline Veretrix

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Re: Vampire PCs
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2015, 12:02:19 PM »
I don't suggest that. Have them all attack and actually DIE. Kill them. TPK!!!! Total Party Kill. Make it epic and make it close but beat them fair and square (by faking rolls and making stuff up if you need to). Spin them up and piss them off. Make them write 0 on their character sheets and tease them.

Then stop them when they start to get too far gone and roll the dice a couple times and have one of them open their eyes in whatever scenario you want.
That sounds so evil. I love it! Tease them until they're on the verge of tearing up their sheet and them be like "Bro, you aren't dead. Why are you so angry?" and then just watch as they get a horribly confused look. I like this much better than what I had initially thought of doing. It doesn't seem quite as forced.

Offline Longspeak

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Re: Vampire PCs
« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2015, 11:51:37 PM »
Unless you know your group really well, and know they'll be okay with it, I recommend you never pull a surprise switch like that.

That said, the premise could be fun. I would just want player buy-in beforehand.

Offline Strolen

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Re: Vampire PCs
« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2015, 06:39:53 PM »
There are so many ways to not make it as violently cruel as I mentioned. Can't have them know about it, that robs the entire idea.

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Offline Scrasamax

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Re: Vampire PCs
« Reply #7 on: August 11, 2015, 01:13:11 AM »
You're basically describing 1st Edition Vampire the Masquerade. It you ever look at one of those old campaign books, or the first gen material, the systems are different, but the graphics and mechanics, and maps and monsters are straight up old school dungeons and dragons.

The monsters became more vampire-centric, vampire hunters, secret societies of clerics, magi and from there, vampire magi.

The real challenge is going to be presenting monsters, traps, and dungeons that are suited to the immortal. Drowning, poison, gases, and such are hindrances, and the real things that challenge them are going to be sentient foes, and things that kill regenerators, ala fire, acid, and specialized materials, focused magics, and organizations.

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Offline axlerowes

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Re: Vampire PCs
« Reply #8 on: August 11, 2015, 06:05:10 AM »
I am with Longspeak.  But I am more in the storytelling camp of gamers than the gamer-gamers like Scras and strolen here.

 I would say the biggest challenge isn't going to be the combat challenges, 12 year olds can figure that out, but letting your players still tell or follow the story they want.  Your players have ideas for characters they think are interesting, they want you to help them develop those characters even if they don't articulate that. So at the least I would give em a couple of game days to play their characters get an idea for who that character is and then make the switch.  That way they have learned about who their character is and who the other characters are before they have to wrestle with the fact of being undead. It would also make the transition richer if you could contrast action the characters made before they turned and after they turned. Save a baby today, eat the baby next week sort of thing.