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How can you possibly do something original with vampires? I decided to try. In my Turakian game, vampires are all deliberately created undead, brought into being by a particularly vile necromantic ritual. Vampires are created by an evil ritual in which the victim is deprived of food and water, repeatedly cursed, and then slowly bled by a combination of exposure to bloodsucking creatures such as leeches and mosquitoes which are force fed to the otherwise starved victim and of draining the victim's blood into a pottery vessel inscribed with curses, from which the victim must drink. When this ordeal finally ends in death, the victim will rise as an undead monster hating their tormentor but compelled to serve and obey. Every vampire has at least two forms; one resembling who they were when alive, and one obviously monstrous shape that is humanoid but reflects the form of one of the bloodsuckers used in their ordeal. Some vampiric powers can only manifest when in the latter form. The monstrous form will always include the head changing into a giant version of that of some parasite such as a mosquito, tick, leech, or spider (technically I know a spider isn't a bloodsucking parasite but it's close enough for necromancy ok?) Some examples of powers associated with specific bloodsuckers: Aspect of the Mosquito Swarm: vampire dissolves into a cloud of mosquitoes Aspect of the Leech Aquatic Ambush: Limited Invisibility if in water Aspect of the Spider Webs: An Entangle power There are ways a vampire thrall can win free, in particular, if the vampire's creator is destroyed. Free vampires can become powerful vampire lords- and once having undergone the hideous rite of transformation, any vampire knows how to inflict it on others.... Lucius Alexander I had more written up for these things but the palindromedary ate most of my work.
Short form: I'd like some suggestions for traps to put in a set of crypts the heroes will have to enter to save some innocents captured by vampires. Background: I've set up an ambush for the heroes (of Just Cause) in my Champions campaign. Back in November they took out a group of vampires preying on college students in Boston. The leader of the vampires, Duchess Danielle du Coudray, was a French diplomat who has sworn vengeance against the heroes. To this end, she has turned various Boston gang members into vampires under her sway, forming a new gang (the Sang Noir, or Black Bloods) pushing drugs both to get her more money while also getting the heroes' attention. The Sang Noir have kidnapped 13 people (including one DNPC and several NPCs connected to Just Cause or its members) to use as bait for a trap. Last game session, the heroes tracked the vampires and some of their victims to a mausoleum in a small cemetery in East Boston. The Crypts: A series of crypts lie beneath the cemetery, with an obvious access through the mausoleum (though there are vents in the ceiling of the crypts opening in various places in the cemetery, small enough for bats to get in and out, which is how the vampires mainly come and go). There are also numerous pipes running underneath the crypts, with floor grates in each room (so vampires can also come and go between rooms in mist form as well). These pipes also lead up into all of the coffins within the crypts. A hex map of the crypts, as well as the mausoleum, is attached below. The Duchess has had 6-8 months to turn these crypts (which she took from another group of vampires whose leader she defeated years ago) into a set of deadly traps for the heroes. The Heroes: Circe, a mentalist who also has psychokinetic powers including flight and a force field. She has Mind Link so the team can communicate at all times. Honey Badger, the team brick with 60 STR and great defenses including life support vs. disease and poison Maker, an energy projector and gadgeteer (45-point VPP she can change as a half-Phase action) in a spacesuit. Malarky, a mage with a spell Multipower for aiding teammates (5d6 Luck and Resistant Protection usable by others) and some attacks, as well as a magical VPP (30 points, I think) he can change as a half-Phase action. The in-game effect of the Luck is that each player rolls the 5d6 and gets to use a +1 for each BODY rolled on the dice, and gets one re-roll for every 6 rolled. Nexus, another mage with spiritual powers (talk to dead, psychometric visions) as well as a spell Multipower Pops, a teleporter (including mass teleports, an AP teleport, and a teleport usable as attack) with high speed but relatively low defenses Shadowboxer, a darkness-controller able to see and hear and teleport through shadows, and recently got a Multiform to mimic others The Duchess' Forces: The Duchess has an undead mage aiding her, who has magically given the crypt proof against both teleportation and scrying. (Basically, added Cannot be Escaped with Teleportation to the walls and Darkness to Clairsentience Sight and Hearing with Personal Immunity covering the crypts.) Suspecting Maker can create an x-ray device, she also had her people line the 40 or so coffins in the crypts with lead, so the heroes can't easily figure out in which coffins the hostages are hidden. She also has 8 lesser vampires who will be down in the crypts to harass the heroes. She has left a scroll in the mausoleum up top to inform the heroes that they have just one minute the time any of them enters the crypt to rescue all the hostages (or "cattle," as she calls them) before she kills them. The lesser vampires aren't a real threat to most of the PCs and I don't expect them to do much more than slow the PCs down a bit. For both mood as well as actual game effect, there's about 6" of CO2 mist swirling about the floor. Bats fluttering about overhead; rats squeaking and scurrying around in the mist on the floor as well as in the pipes underground. Rough stone walls (with magical runes inscribed by the undead mage for the above-noted game effects, plus increasing the defenses beyond normal stone). Dim lighting from natural gas-fed torches guttering on the walls. You get the picture. The Traps: Each set of rooms of the crypts can be cut off from the rest by dropping a huge slab of rock (also inscribed with anti-teleport runes). I don't consider this a trap per se, just another feature of the crypts. The Duchess and her undead mage will be watching the action from a secure location far away, and can trigger the slabs of rock as well as any traps. The only trap I've put in thus far is that she'll pump nerve gas into the floor mist about a half-Turn after the heroes enter the crypts. [Blast 1d6, NND (LS: Nerve Gas; +1), Does BODY (+1), Damage Over Time (12 increments, every other Segment; +4), AoE (floor surface; +2), Constant (+½), 0 END (+½)] Since this will be marked by high-pitched squeals from the rats in the beneath-floor pipes, followed by their silence, this should give the heroes a bit of warning. When her minute deadline passes, she'll increase the gas pressure to force the nerve gas up into the coffins, killing any innocents still trapped in them. So, any clever ideas for other traps? I'd like a separate trap for each set of rooms. The Duchess has shown a willingness to use high technology before, so they don't have to be medieval-type traps. Given the time constraint, I expect the heroes will split up to cover ground faster, but keep in mind that the Duchess won't know which hero(es) will enter which set of rooms, so tailoring a room's trap for a given hero would be difficult.