Looking for feedback on these aquatic vampires, thanks!

Looking for feedback on these aquatic vampires, thanks!

Looking for feedback on these aquatic vampires, thanks!


Group, Stealthy, Organized, Intelligent

Claws and teeth (d8+4 damage, 1 piercing); 10 HP; 2 Armor

Close, Messy

Special Qualities: Siren’s song

These vampires have adapted to live amongs the waves. They have developed fishlike gills, razor-sharp teeth and hardened scales on their gaunt hairless bodies. They use their telepathic powers to call humans into the water. They have spent centuries living in island caves and other watery hiding places. 

Instinct: To feed on drowned, cocooned corpses

Vulnerability: Large black eyes

• Drag foes underwater

• Wrap them in an algae cocoon

• Call upon its kin

12 thoughts on “Looking for feedback on these aquatic vampires, thanks!”

  1. Ugh. I thought they’d be better looking. 😉

    I like it! The “vulnerability” field is cool. It would play well with class moves like the Ranger’s “Smaug’s Belly.”

  2. Well I imagine them a bit more humanoid appearing, more like Voldemort in terms of deformity. 

    Vulnerability is something i saw in Grim World and liked.

  3. Yeah, been adding in vulnerabilities to all my DW sessions, on the fly mostly. Really helps with letting PCs find other ways to defeat baddies, makes for good story. Grimworld is fab, imo.

  4. Couple thoughts:

    – Why call them vampires? Are they undead?  If so, why do they need gills?

    – I’d strongly recommend making the siren’s call a move. Like “Compel mortals into the water” or “Subdue its prey with a telepathic song” (depending on what you want it do to do)

    – Is the algae cocoon something they’re likely to do to a still living victim? Or something they do after they’ve drowned the victim?  If the latter, it’s not a very inter interesting move; you’ll never use it on a PC until its too late.

    – Maybe they actually are bloodsuckers and they must keep their prey alive underwater? And the algae cocoons sustain their victims? That’s more interesting to me.

    – As Christopher Stone-Bush points out, they’re pretty darn tough for “lurkers.”  Where are the +4 HP coming from? Or the +4 damage (I get +2 from “vicious and obvious”). And are their claws really able to slice or pierce metal?

  5. [Some comments came it while I was writing this one, so sorry for the repetitions!]

    I love it!

    – d8+4 seems a bit high. d8+1 or d8+2 (“its armaments are vicious and obvious) seems better suited.

    – I’d remove the vulnerability, maybe  putting “big black eyes” in the description (and leaving it to the DM to adjudicate).

    – I like super simple instinct, so I’d put only “To feed”; moves and description convey the rest.

    – The special quality should be something like “Telepathy”, unless “Siren’s song” is something else, in which case you should describe it a bit it the presentation.

    – I’d change the first move to “invade a mind” or something like that.

    – You could maybe go with a more evocative presentation, especially if you want to share it (on the DW Codex or somewhere else). The Troll (p. 252) and Salamander (p. 303) are good examples of presentation that are evocative while still giving a good physical description of the monster. Here is one i just did (do what you wish with it) :

    Yes, Dom, I sure asked my father about it. He just said “Do you hear this song?” I told him no, that there was no song, because there wasn’t. Of all my life, I never saw him smirk, not even that time when Small Tom knocked his tooth off by opening our front door. And there he was, smiling like a child and walking straight into the sea. I went after him, but some kind of grey fish-man emerged. Big black eyes, scales, claws the size of a knife. I panicked and fell in the water. By the time I got up, both were gone. So no, Dom, I don’t know where your fishing rod is.

  6. As it’s written as a move, my knee-jerk interpretation is that they entangle you in their algae nets to let you drown.

    And Siren’s Song is already evocative; as it’s one of the quick reference lines, I like the minimalism.

  7. Here is my update!


    Group, Stealthy, Organized, Intelligent

    Claws and teeth (d8+2 damage); 10 HP; 2 Armor

    Close, Messy

    Special Qualities: Telepathic

    Vulnerabilities: They have a deeper aversion to sunlight than other vampires

    “The Sirens aren’t a dream, they’re a nightmare, son,” my father told me. “They live among the waves. They have frightening black eyes and knife-like claws that are sharp as razors, teeth too and they got more than a mouthful of them. First thing you will hear is the Song, more of a lullaby your mother would sing you to sleep with, it calls you out beyond the breakers. You’ll find yourself floating to your neck far from the beach and wonder how you got there. The twisted scaly wretches have already circled you and the clouds rip away when they pull you into the deep.” Instinct: To feed on drowned corpses

    • Compels mortals into the water or fascinates them with song

    • Call upon its kin

Comments are closed.