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Nykolo
2017-06-30, 11:14 PM
My friends REALLY want to play as vampires. I asked around for advise and they all say it is not the best idea. Even Dawnforgedcast recommended not to go. However, I got a lot of replies with links to the Plane Shift Zendikar supplement which has a really nice PC friendly vampire race. I also got some links leading to the Dampyr race, and borrowed an ability from that. After reading both races, I got the idea of creating subraces for the vampire race using the Zendikar vampire as a base. I used the vampire classes from the Nosgoth game as bases for each subrace, and even used the names of the clans as working names. Don't know if I will keep them in the final project, but it's something to go by.
I haven't playtested them yet, and would really like some input and any advise on balance.

VAMPIRE
For ten thousand years, the vampires have ruled over the land. Driving the humans to near extinction, the vampires built an empire as a sign to all those who would dare defy them.

Vampire Traits
Your dark heritage grants you powerful abilities.
Ability Score Increase. Your Charisma score increases by 2.
Age. Vampires do not age, and will never grow old. Their bodies is lifeless and cold to the touch.
Alignment. The Empire is a gathering of various clans with various ideals, so they are generally neutral. It is in a Vampire's nature to be cruel, so they lean strongly toward evil.
Size. Exact height depended on the clan of the vampire. For example, the Turelim clan are large and brutish, while the Melchahim clan are slender and dainty. No matter your clan, your size is medium.
Speed. Your base walking speed is 30 feet.
Darkvision. Thanks to your heritage, you have superior vision in dark and dim conditions. You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light, and in darkness as if it were dim light. You canít discern color in darkness, only shades of gray.
Vampiric Resistance. You have resistance to necrotic damage.
Blood Thirst. You can drain blood and life energy from a willing creature, or one that is grappled by you, incapacitated, or restrained. Make a melee attack against the target. If you hit, you deal 1 piercing damage and 1d6 necrotic damage. The targetís hit point maximum is reduced by an amount equal to the necrotic damage taken, and you regain hit points equal to that amount. The reduction lasts until the target finishes a long rest. The target dies if this effect reduces its hit point maximum to 0. A humanoid killed in this way becomes a vampire.
Languages. You can speak, read, and write Common and Vampire.
Clans. The empire is split up into five clans (or subraces): Dumahim, Melchahim, Razielim, Turelim, and Zephonim. Choose one of these clans.

Dumahim
Dumahim are calm and collected. They use their naturally silent movements to sneak behind enemy lines. Dumahim are often employed as assassins. Stalking into enemy homes and killing them in their sleep.
Ability Score Increase. Your Constitution score increases by 1.
Size. Dumahim stand from under 5 to over 6 feet tall and have lean bodies.
Stealth. You gain proficiency in the Stealth skill.
Great Leap. Dark powers have granted you the ability to leap great distances. You add double proficiency on Strength (Athletics) when jumping. In addition, you cover double the range for long jump and high jump.

Melchahim
Melchahim excel in magic and alchemy. They specialize in the arcane arts and its mysteries. To a member of the Melchahim, there is no secret hidden from the empire. Melchahim inventions have greatly benefited the empire during the war on the humans; from poison filled bombs, to potions that provide a blood substitute. Some in the Melchahim say that they were the backbone of the empire during the war. A notion that, although may be true, is laughed at by the other clans.
Ability Score Increase. Your Intelligence score increases by 1.
Size. Melchahim stand from 4 1/2 to 5 feet tall. They are slender and dainty in appearance.
Arcana. You gain proficiency in the Arcana skill.
Tool Proficiency. You gain proficiency in Alchemist's Supplies.
Cantrips. You know the cantrip minor illusion and can cast it at will. At 3rd level, you can cast the charm person spell once with this trait and regain the ability to do so when you finish a long rest. When you reach 5th level, you can cast the spider climb spell once with this trait and regain the ability to do so after you finish a long rest. Charisma is your spellcasting ability for these spells.

Razielim
Razielim are the winged sentinels of the Empire. They are the guards of the empire's walls in peaceful times. During wartime, however, they are utilized as scouts or used in aerial assault; bombarding armies with poisonous bombs developed by the Melchahim.
Ability Score Increase. Your Dexterity score increases by 2.
Size. Razielim stand from under 5 to over 6 feet tall and have slender builds.
Keen Senses. You gain proficiency in the Perception skill.
Flight. You have leather wings that allow you to fly at a speed of 30 feet. To use this ability, you canít be wearing medium or heavy armor. As an action, you may dive onto a creature and attempt to knock the creature prone (see Shoving a Creature in the Player's Handbook page 195). If your attempt is successful, you deal bludgeoning damage equal to 1d6 + your Strength modifier.
Alternatively, you may use an action to dive down and attempt a grapple check. When doing so in this manner, you have advantage on your Strength (Athletics) check to grapple. Many Razielim use this maneuver to better their chances on draining the blood of their victim.

Turelim
Turelim are the brutish front-line fighters of the empire. A raging Turelim can send an entire battalion of humans running in fear. Many human civilizations have been annihilated by just a handful of these monsters.
Ability Score Increase. Your Strength score increases by 2.
Size. Turelim stand from 6 to 7 feet tall. They are heavily muscular in appearance.
Blood Rage. On your turn, you can enter a rage as a bonus action after using the Blood Thirst ability. This ability acts just like the barbarian's rage (see Player's Handbook page 48), except you use your character level for barbarian levels to determine bonus damage. If your class already grants the rage ability or an effect similar to rage, you instead add an additional use of the rage ability. Once you have used Blood Rage, you must finish a long rest to rage again.

Zephonim
When the kings of the human lands were assassinated by the Dumahim clan, it was the Zephonim who sent them to their targets in the first place. Zephonim are the spies and strategists of the empire. It was them who orchestrated the Doom of Mankind; driving all humans to near extinction.
Ability Score Increase. Your Wisdom score increases by 1.
Size. Zephonim stand from under 5 to over 6 feet tall. Their true appearance is gaunt and withered.
Deception. You gain proficiency in the Deception skill.
Shapechanger. As an action, you can polymorph into any humanoid of your size that you have seen or back into your true form. However, your equipment does not change with you. If you die, you revert to your natural appearance.

Lalliman
2017-07-01, 02:16 AM
First thought: Blood Rage gives a damage bonus equal to your character level? That's ludicrous. You'll deal double your normal damage when raging at 10th level, and triple at 20th. Why buff an already powerful ability?

That aside, let me whip out the good ol' race guide (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ViqLSEN67mmd2Lo_OJ-H5YX0fccsfI97kFaqx7V1Dmw/pub) again. It can be used to calculate roughly how powerful a race is by assigning points to its abilities.

Base: 2 (Cha) + 0.5 (Darkvision) + 0.5 (necrotic resistance) + 0.5? (Blood Thirst) = 3.5 points

I didn't rate Blood Thirst very highly, because although it can be used to obtain infinite healing, it's kind of difficult to use, especially if you don't want to go around spawning tons of vampires.

Dumahim: 1 (Con) + 0.5 (Stealth prof) + 0.5 (Great Leap) = 2
Total 5.5

Melchahim: 1 (Int) + 0.5 (Arcana prof) + 0.5 (Alchemist's tools) + 1.5 (spells) = 3.5
Total 7

Razielim: 2 (Dex) + 0.5 (Perception prof) + 1? (Flight) = 3.5
Total 7
(You don't really explain what gliding means. Can you fly for 30 feet at a time? Do you go down at a 90 degree angle when gliding? You also shouldn't call it Flight when it isn't actual Flight.)

Turelim: 2 (Str) + 2? (Blood Rage) = 4
Total 7.5
(This is ignoring the increased damage bonus and treating Blood Rage as normal Rage.)

Zephonim: 1 (Wis) + 0.5 (Deception prof) + 2? (Shapechanger) = 3.5
Total 7
(Shapechanger is quite powerful, since there's nothing to stop you from transforming into an exact replicate of someone, and it's not as easily discovered as Alter Self.)

According to this guide, most of the core races have a score of 5-6. So these vampires are on the strong side, which seems appropriate and isn't an issue if everyone plays one. Only the Dumahim really lags behind, so that one could use a boost.

It should be mentioned that, despite your efforts of giving a varied stat lineup, not all classes are equally viable. Bard, paladin, sorcerer and warlock are strongly encouraged by the +2 Cha. Turelim will make good barbarians and fighters, Razielim will make good fighters and rogues, and decent monks and rangers. Clerics, druids and wizards aren't really supported, since they can at best get a +1 bonus to their primary stat. This might not be a problem, but it's worth considering if everyone is to play this same race.

Nykolo
2017-07-01, 02:49 AM
I admit the Blood Rage is powerful. I pretty much took the barbarian rage, though now I see I should tone it down a bit. The shapechanger is actually already a racial ability. It's pretty much a copy and paste from the Changeling ability from Eberron's 5e conversion. The glide rules I am still working on. Thinking of just going for a straight flight speed anyway. Maybe also take out the dive properties all together.
I am open to suggestions to better balance these out.

Of course, this is mostly going to be compared to the Human with the "+1 to all stats" rule, who I see as having 6 points.

JNAProductions
2017-07-01, 10:11 AM
Blood Rage is far too powerful. +Character Level damage? Barbarians get, at most, +6. Sure, it's weak at level 1, but it's better than a Barbarian rage at level 3.

In addition, this fails the sack of rats test. I'd make the bite a once per short rest feature.

JBPuffin
2017-07-01, 11:55 AM
Blood Rage is far too powerful. +Character Level damage? Barbarians get, at most, +6. Sure, it's weak at level 1, but it's better than a Barbarian rage at level 3.

In addition, this fails the sack of rats test. I'd make the bite a once per short rest feature.

The MtG vampire must fail sack-o-rats, then?

Rage Bonus could be just as a barbarian of your character level?

JNAProductions
2017-07-01, 11:55 AM
The MtG vampire must fail sack-o-rats, then?

Rage Bonus could be just as a barbarian of your character level?

Haven't seen it.

And that would be much better, yes.

Llama513
2017-07-01, 12:07 PM
I have an archetype for my inquisitor that is a vampire, but it would pin them down to being that archetype, or at the very least give an idea for how to give them some of the vampiric powers without completely breaking things

Nykolo
2017-07-01, 01:39 PM
Crap! I completely overlooked that part! Okay. Simple change. Now Blood Rage REALLY acts like barbarian rage. Only difference, is that barbarian level is equal to character level.

Sariel Vailo
2017-07-01, 03:46 PM
Like legacy of kain nosgoth.ej raziel but oll stick wit the zendikari vampires.

Ziegander
2017-07-01, 06:15 PM
To further limit Blood Rage and make it more evocative (and further clarify as well), may I suggest only allowing the rage as a bonus action after regaining hit points from your Blood Thirst attack? Regardless of your choice on the matter, you also definitely want to add text that states after using your Blood Rage you must finish a long rest before you can use it again.

Nykolo
2017-07-01, 08:35 PM
To further limit Blood Rage and make it more evocative (and further clarify as well), may I suggest only allowing the rage as a bonus action after regaining hit points from your Blood Thirst attack? Regardless of your choice on the matter, you also definitely want to add text that states after using your Blood Rage you must finish a long rest before you can use it again.

That does make sense, It is called "Blood Rage". Thanks for the input.

Nykolo
2017-07-01, 08:53 PM
Like legacy of kain nosgoth.ej raziel but oll stick wit the zendikari vampires.

In a manner of speaking. They are based on the vampire classes from Nosgoth with a few changes.