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  • Native American Vampires

    One of my favorite things as a vampire ST is designing ancient histories and feuds that the local kindred have and how these come to haunt the PCs. Every single chronicle I've done with my groups has been in North America for the simple reason that I have not been to Europe and I get worried I would end up depicting London, Paris, or Berlin as some sort of Hollywood inspired theme park city.

    So instead I focus a fair deal on North America's history and occasionally have had a few elders with rich histories across the Atlantic that immigrated here for one reason or another, but most of my North American elders are settlers that showed up here at most 400 years ago. However we have very very little lore of any sort concerning Native Americans in the New World of Darkness (nWoD not CoD, I play 1e), which is a pretty crucial aspect to the history of those Elders that settled here. We know that there were definitely Native American Kindred in both North and South America before Europeans showed up (the Sta-Au, the Choctaw Elder of New Orleans, and the Central American Bloodlines are evidence of this), but we know very little about them.

    The thing is that is a pretty huge aspect of North America's history, whether you're focusing on the European settlers or not. This basically implies there are entire lineages of vampires, entire covenants even, that European Kindred likely interacted with, whether they fought them, traded favors with them, existed in the same domain, or had tenuous agreements to leave each other the hell alone. I'm not even going to get into the fact this is just as true for all the other supernatural critters out there (werewolf and changeling anyone?) and just focus on vampires for now.

    So I thought I'd ask you all if you've done much with Native American Kindred, if the Circle of the Crone was taken a certain direction, if you've made or used certain bloodlines, etc. Hell I wonder if you guys think if some clans would even have existed in North America of if the Americas may have even had their own clans. Gangrel and Nosferatu we know seem to exist damn near everywhere, but Ventrue seem almost solely European.

    When it comes to real world inspiration I've dug around online for Native American vampire myths and the myth of Jumlin cropped up several times, but if anyone knows of any other sources of inspiration they're definitely appreciated.
    Last edited by Star Sage; 01-07-2018, 11:37 AM.

  • #2
    There's a great part of clanbook Nosferatu where development of a mall seems to awaken an ancient Native Nosferatu who is rabidly hunting the perspective character who, it seems, has no idea what is happening or why.

    I haven't done anything with the Native Americans of the North but from the South and Central Americas I've played up the blood priest angle from Shadows of Mexico. Also brought in some Edward Lee with the remnants of a tribe in Florida that an Ordo Dracul was studying. It had at least one vampire in it, they woke him up, but he was not in the mood to talk.

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    • #3
      I'm pretty interested in Mesoamerica so wouldn't mind getting some more work on them.

      The big problem naturally is that for shock value people tend to only think of the sacrifices while ignoring all other parts of the culture of this interesting area. If I may be so blunt and perhaps write something that will make Onyx Path get annoyed, I would recommend people interested in Mesoamerica to get hold of the RPG known as New Fire in order to get a better look at an Mesoamerican background for Kindred elders. Sure, its not a historical game but I think they portray the culture pretty well in general. And its probably a faster read to read that and then check up some details, rather than going through all the scholarly material that would otherwise be needed to get a good grasp of the culture and expand that knowledge beyond. "Oh my god, they sacrified people!"

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      • #4
        Well, Lost Clan wise, there is at least two Lost Clans in 2e which has originated in North America (one had their curse being that they were bound to their graves, which kinda brought down their end when their herds left, while the other was presented at Half Damned and has been reduced to a revenant dynasty after being revived by a dampyr descendant). Shadows of Mexico also presents the Xotolol, which were the proto Nosferatu of Mexico, and Wicked Dead presents a "clan" of blood witches bound to the Jaguar and birthed from mothers who lost their children.


        My Homebrew Signature- Because I need one. If you use any of it, please share with me how it went!

        On a Dragonlance-reading break. Surprise homebrew may still happen :P
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        • #5
          In mesoamerican folklore the Civateteo was a type of vampire made up of women who had died in childbirth. They tended to hang out at crossroads and funeral caves. They had the powers of flight and shapeshifting, so they would probably be a gangrel bloodline.


          My Savannah Setting for CofD can be found here

          My heroes as monster tamers rules for BtP can be found here

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          • #6
            Originally posted by The young man in the cafe View Post
            In mesoamerican folklore the Civateteo was a type of vampire made up of women who had died in childbirth. They tended to hang out at crossroads and funeral caves. They had the powers of flight and shapeshifting, so they would probably be a gangrel bloodline.
            yeah, those are the Wicked Dead "clan" I talked about


            My Homebrew Signature- Because I need one. If you use any of it, please share with me how it went!

            On a Dragonlance-reading break. Surprise homebrew may still happen :P
            I now blog in here

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            • #7
              Originally posted by LostLight View Post
              yeah, those are the Wicked Dead "clan" I talked about
              Opps didn't see that.


              My Savannah Setting for CofD can be found here

              My heroes as monster tamers rules for BtP can be found here

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              • #8
                Two out of three of the examples of cities in North America in the corebook feature Native Americans quite prominently. In one case, it is an (originally) Mohawk family of Ventrue.

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                • #9
                  - As mentioned by LostLight, Shadows Over Mexico has a bunch of nice bits of fluff here and there for one to mine, tweak and adapt. It also references another version of the Cihuateteo, before the Wicked Dead one, if memory tricks me not.

                  - Beside the Cihuateteo, Wicked Dead also has another figure from native american myth, the Baykosh, that might be more phantasmagoric than vampiric - but then could not the same be said of the Strix in the same book?

                  - Ancient Mysteries and Ancient Bloodlines had the Sta-Au, that while portrayed as a strange Nosferatu-Mekhet in the later book could just as well be a whole different thing altogether when one takes in account stuff like their peculiar gifts and the whole Land of Worms thing. A creation of the Sta-Au, the Worm Pipe, gets referenced into the Beast that Haunts the Blood and Night Stalkers, while the Land of Worms is also referenced in Intruders: Encounters with the Abyss - i think it has been lots of years, so i might be getting the actual MtAw book wrong.

                  - Skinchangers has the Kanaima, a south american host of jaguar/vengeance spirits obsessed with avenging wronged dead people by merging with them into ravenous shapechanging undead. Yeah, really, check it out.

                  - Mythologies mentions in passing the Cherokee legend of a supernatural hag called Utlunta, or Spear-Finger, as an introduction to the kindred legends on the "art" and powers of liver-eating. It also references in passing the possibility of Red Jack, one of the mythic/supernatural patrons of the "discipline" of Ars Speculorum, as a modernized disguise of Tezcatlipoca, the Smoking Mirror, a major deity of aztec religion (and most probably the Jaguar referenced in Wicked Dead's tale of Cihuateteo origins).

                  That's all that i managed to remember for now, hope it makes for some fun reading.

                  Also, no problem with mixing and matching or reskinning stuff according to your convenience, mythemes, imagery and symbolism come, go and may repeat themselves across cultures, related or not, depending on their circunstances.

                  For example, Blood Mary, that appears as a feminine counterpart to Red Jack in Mythologies and muse/matron/guide of the Children of the Thorns from Danse Macabre, has lots in common in concepts and legendry with La Llorona, meaning you could easily replace one with the other.

                  For another, in the Strix chapter on Wicked Dead there's a box about imagery related to owls, crows, ravens & such. Death is one of the correlations, that can just as easily be transfered to a Grim Reaper kind of figure, like the Baykosh, or the Reapers from the "Torpor Realm" in Mythologies, among other stuff.

                  Like, let's say, using pre-columbian sacrifice practices as a hook for native american variants of Bloodbathers (from Immortals) or Sons of Phobos from Blood Sorcery. Or associating the crow indirectly related to the origins of the Bohagande (Bloodlines: the Hidden) & their luck-stealing magic to the Strix or something similar.

                  PS: Somehow i missed the OP's own mention of the Sta-Au in the first post - oh well, i hope the compilation of details on them across the books proves useful anyway.
                  Last edited by Baaldam; 01-14-2018, 12:43 PM.

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                  • #10
                    It just so happens I've been working on something related to this.


                    Ai Apaec

                    From the 2nd to 8th centuries CE, the northern coast of Peru was dominated by the civilization now known as the Moche. Modern archaeologists know the Moche for their elaborate (and often erotic) ceramic art, their sophisticated metalwork… and their practice of human sacrifice. Temple murals depict priests slaughtering bound captives, catching their blood in ceremonial goblets, and offering it to fanged gods. These scenes of sacrifice are often associated with one of the main Moche gods: a fanged, bearded figure known as “the Decapitator” or “Ai Apaec.”

                    All of the above is openly known to mortal historians. The Kindred of South America, however, know the truth: the Moche were ruled by a line of vampire kings who claimed descent from the god Ai Apaec. That lineage still exists, despite the fall of the Moche civilization and the later Spanish conquest of Peru. In hidden places, the Decapitators still preside over orgiastic rites and feasts of blood.

                    By the standards of European Kindred, the Ai Apaec are a bloodline of the Daeva clan. Traditionally, however, the Decapitators have considered themselves a breed apart from either the colonial Kindred or the other vampires of the Americas. Most Ai Apaec prefer to embrace mortals of Native American descent, and will never initiate “foreign” Daeva into the bloodline. In ancient times, childer who failed to manifest the bloodline’s unique traits were hunted down and destroyed. In modern nights, these “bastard” childer usually face exile instead.

                    Ai Apaec have a reputation as arrogant and standoffish. They consider themselves the rightful rulers of Peru’s nights, and only grudgingly tolerate the rule of other clans and bloodlines. Their herds and retainers are traditionally organized into cults, each worshipping their master as a god; as a result, modern Ai Apec find natural allies in the Circle of the Crone, although some Decapitators whose cults are heavily syncretic with Christianity find a place in the Lancea Sanctum.

                    Nickname: Decapitators

                    Banes: Ai Apaec suffer from the Daeva clan bane. (Ancient Decapitators often preferred to kill their vessels rather than risk emotional attachment; in modern nights, however, this is often impractical.) In addition, the Ai Apaec have a thirst for blood that outstrips other vampires: their dice pools to resist frenzy from hunger are limited by their Humanity (as the Gangrel clan bane.) This penalty does not apply when resisting frenzy from causes other than hunger, nor when attempting to ride the wave.

                    Disciplines: Celerity, Majesty, Protean, Vigor

                    PS: Everything in the first paragraph is absolutely true. Seriously, you can't make this stuff up!
                    Last edited by DSPaul; 01-15-2018, 11:35 AM.

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