Sunday, July 24, 2011

Vampire Wars: The Von Carstein Trilogy by Steven Savile


As long as I can remember, Vampires have been part of the role playing game. Mind you, back in first edition they would level drain you instead of sucking your blood. TSR was quick to put out their own take on the classic version of the vampire through the old Ravenloft module that has spawned its own setting and various updates on the adventure. White Wolf has several brands of Vampire to investigate. The media loves Vampires and TV loves them through such shows as the Vampire Diaries and True Blood.

Warhammer has its own history with the vampire. I'm not real familiar with it mind you as I generally only toe dip into the tabletop side where much of the RPG side originated from. For example, one of the first books I  recall with Vampires in it isn't Vampire Counts, its Undead. Vampires were just another monster that could be added. Vampires seemed to go the White Wolf route with the first Vampire Counts book where  various bloodlines were introduced;  Lahmians, Von Carsteins, Blood Dragons, Strigoi, and Necrarchs. The latest batch focuses on the Von Carsteins but still allows variety.

So far I've blathered on quite a bit about Vampires and mentioned their evolution and current status in the Warhammer setting but what about the book Vampire Wars? Well, my copy has a price of $13.99 on the back and I picked it up at Half-Price for less than the cost of a single paperback. The book features three eras of Vampires from the Von Carstein line and does a fair job of showcasing the strengths of the vampires as well as how hard they can be to fight. For someone looking to see the Vampire as a military leader and vastly powerful spellcaster in the Warhammer setting, its a good read with a lot of potential for adventure ideas.

I'll point out some specifics but note that if you find a series in the Warhammer fiction line that looks good, its probably best to wait on the collections before plunking down the cash. At $13.99, it's a steal.