Friday, October 23, 2020

Weird Revisited: Tome of Draculas!

An orphaned Secret Santicore request in 2013 was for “better draculas.” This cryptic request I interpret in as referring to D&D’s propensity of turning unique creatures from mythology or fiction into a class of creatures. This blogpost was the result.

A dracula then is pretty much like the standard D&D vampire--except that they have a whole “urbane foreign noble fallen on hard times” thing going for them.  For a standard dracula, simply use your vampire stats of choice: give him (it’s going to be a him, most of the time) a foreign accent, a stylish cape, and a dilapidated castle.

With that in mind, here are some dracula variants:

Aquatic draculas haunt sunken funeral ships or castles submerged by some natural or manmade upheaval. Draculas are restrained by running water, but relatively still lakes, inlets or lagoons provide a place where they may be active at least some of the time. Aquatic draculas are unable to summon rats, bats, or wolves, but crabs, sentient seaweed, piranhas, and unsavory otters are an option.

Merely vampiric animals (besides bats) are impossible, but the power of a dracula’s curse is such that even beasts must succumb. Dracula dogs are the most common variety, but even cows have been known. Dracula animals have HD 7 and all the usual vampiric powers and weaknesses, plus whatever innate abilities they possessed in life. Magical animals may not be dracula-ized. (An alternate version of the hellcow appears here.)

Some draculas ache for a love lost and often mistake some woman or another for this long dead inamorata. The charm ability of the lovelorn dracula often convinces the woman in question that she is indeed a reincarnation. Lovelorn draculas are mechanically identical to the standard version, but they are often hunkier and have flowing locks and a penchant for going shirtless. They seldom bother with summoning vermin, though they probably can.

These draculas are hideous and vaguely rodent-like in appearance. They lack the suave demeanor other draculas affect: they are either testy and animalistic, or creep- pathetic and lonely. They have a special affinity for vermin and can summon twice the usual number of rats. They also tend to bring plagues where they go and can cause disease. When exposed to sunlight they fade away rather than turn to dust.

This dracula violates the "mostly male" rule. These draculas are mostly female and their foreignness comes from being from another world or plane where blood flows like water. They have none of the shapeshifting or animal summoning powers of usual draculas, but make up for it with HD 9.

After a dracula dies, they turn to a reddish powder. This dust can be collected and made into a beverage when mixed with wine and human blood. When this potion is consumed, the imbiber must save vs. polymorph or painfully transform into a duplicate of the dracula whose dust was used.


Picador said...

“ Lovelorn draculas are mechanically identical to the standard version, but they are often hunkier and have flowing locks and a penchant for going shirtless, EVEN IF THEY ARE BEING PLAYED BY GARY OLDMAN.”

Judge Joe Kilmartin said...

I would include:

"Dracula, Black" - as per the standard Dracula but with chestnut brown skin. Known for their mellifluous voices and charming demeanor, they do all their stalking in large urban centres.


"Dracula, Hamiltonian" - as per the standard Dracula but their primary means of seduction involve
s a particular adeptness at dancing to popular music.