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Dhampir lineage, heritage, and background for the Tales of the Valiant RPG

Dhampir lineage, heritage, and background for the Tales of the Valiant RPG

The Tales of the Valiant roleplaying game is here! PDF and VTT versions are available now!

The Player’s Guide contains the classic fantasy people for player characters: elves, dwarves, and humans, and some new-school favorites like kobolds and sydereans. But there’s room for more kinds of people in modern fantasy!

This blog series of extra lineages doesn’t appear in the Player’s Guide . . . but if you like these, let us know here and in the Kobold Discord server. There’s potential for them to appear in an official capacity in the future!

The dhampirs are creatures born of a vampiric parent. They aren’t vampires themselves, but they have the allure and thirst of their parent. How does that look in the Tales of the Valiant game?


Dhampirs are the improbable children of vampires and human mothers. The world itself seems to reject the half-living, and strange occurrences abound around them, especially if they are in a relaxed atmosphere. Small items fall from tables, light furniture seems to move of its own accord, shutters and doors open or close without a hand upon them. In settlements where the inhabitants are suspicious of unexplainable phenomena, dhampirs are thought to attract ghosts and are either avoided or attacked outright if the people are particularly superstitious.

People who interact with dhampirs have strong subconscious feelings about them. They either find them compelling and seek to be near them, or they are repulsed and find the earliest opportunity to leave their presence. It’s rare for a living person to meet a dhampir and feel nothing about their new acquaintance.

For this reason, lone dhampirs without a community of peers to support them, favor large, cosmopolitan settlements where they can maintain many acquaintances without causing too much of a disturbance. Such dhampirs who do not live adventurous lives gravitate toward work they can do in the evening or at night and that allows regular casual contact with the public.

As the children of humans, dhampirs run the range of human height, though they tend to be lean. Females are markedly slighter than males. Their hair and skin tones similarly run the human range, though their hair tends to be very vibrant while their skin is paler than a human of the same heritage. Dhampirs are prone to sunburn and as such favor hats and head coverings, and wear clothing that leaves little flesh exposed. Many even take to wearing gloves during the day. Whether or not it is ostentatious, all dhampirs prefer to wear finely made clothing that is kept in good repair.


Your dhampir character has the following hereditary traits.

Age. Dhampirs mature in their late teenage years, but their aging slows upon adulthood. A dhampir can live up to 750 years.

Size. Your size is Medium. Dhampirs usually grow between 5 feet and 6 feet tall and have a slight build.

Speed. Your base walking speed is 30 feet.

Darkvision. You have superior vision in naturally 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 can’t discern color in darkness, only shades of grey.

Dark Thirst. You can bite as an unarmed strike against an incapacitated creature, or a creature you have grappled. Your bite deals 1 piercing damage, and if your target has blood and isn’t a Construct or Undead, you can feed from it as part of your attack. Your feeding deals necrotic damage equal to your CHA modifier (minimum of 1), and you gain temporary hit points equal to the necrotic damage dealt. Once you gain temporary hit points with this trait, you can’t do so again until you finish a short or long rest.

Vampiric Resilience. You have advantage on saving throws against disease, and you have resistance to necrotic damage.


Generally, there aren’t enough dhampirs in the world for groups of them to band together in societies. Most are found in other heritages without a particularly dhampir flair. There are, however, rare instances where dhampirs grow up together, and they can include the non-dhampir as well.


Sometimes a vampire sire wishes to keep his children close to him, perhaps to groom them as loyal agents, but sometimes out of a warped sense of kinship, protectiveness, or exceptionalism. Characters of the clannish heritage have been cultivated and molded by a controlling patron. They are well educated, although their inexperience with the greater world often leaves them with odd gaps in their knowledge. Clannish characters have been taught not merely to appreciate the finer things in life, but to demand them. In a vampire’s household, the clannish members hold places of prominence. Characters of this heritage know they are the true scions of their patrons, and they expect to be treated as such.

In households that boast many clannish members, a hierarchy quickly emerges with the most ruthless member at the top. Weak members are bullied and scorned, but never cast out, which would put them beyond the patron’s control. Sometimes, however, a misfit escapes. They invariably decide on one of two directions: either they seek to become powerful enough to rejoin their former household at the top of the hierarchy, or they seek allies to topple the structure completely and slay the vampire that created it.

Members of a clannish heritage are haughty and decisive. Even those who have been exiled from their patron’s home have a high opinion of themselves and expect those they consort with will show them their due deference. They rarely have close friends; a friend is merely an enemy who hasn’t shown their true face yet.

Odd Gaps. Choose two of the following skills: Animal Handling, Nature, Religion or Survival. You may never be proficient in these skills. For checks using these skills, treat any d20 roll of 16 or higher as though you rolled a 15.

Predatory Charm. You have proficiency in the Persuasion skill. In addition, if you spend at least 1 minute conversing or interacting with a humanoid you or your allies haven’t attacked within the last 24 hours, you have advantage on your next CHA check against that humanoid. Regardless of the result, you can’t use your Predatory Charm on that humanoid again until 24 hours have passed. If you roll a 20 on the d20 for the Charisma check, the humanoid is a willing target for your bite attack.

Strong Mind. You have advantage on saving throws against being charmed. If you fail your initial saving throw against being charmed, you can make a new one at the end of every minute that passes, even if the source of the effect doesn’t allow you to make subsequent saves.

Languages. You know Common and one other language. Most zealborn choose Elvish.


You trained and worked within a troupe of vampire hunters. You learned how to detect the presence of a vampire in a community, how to track it to its lair, and how to destroy it utterly. And you learned that vampire hunters live short, violent lives.

Perhaps you are a dhampir, resentful of your lineage and driven toward absolution, a villager seeking revenge against the creature that took your life from you, or a crusader with a specific zeal. Even after you leave the life, you keep the skills and reflexes gained from the experience.

Skill Proficiencies: Choose two from History, Insight, Investigation, or Sleight of Hand.

Additional Proficiencies: Learn one additional language of your choice and gain proficiency with trapper tools.

Equipment: A cloak, a set of traveler’s clothes, a backpack, five wooden stakes, a hand mirror, and a pouch containing 10 gp.


You’ve had special training combined with some natural ability to make you a crack vampire hunter. Choose a talent from this list to represent your experience: Covert, Critical Training, or Spell Duelist.

Adventuring Motivation

Perhaps the adventuring life is an extension of your previous line of work. Or maybe you were the only survivor of a failed hunt and decided to move on to less fickle game.

Adventuring Motivation
d8Adventuring Motivation
1Any dead monster is a good monster, vampire or no. Adventuring gets that done.
2I honor my trainer by continuing this work in the course of adventuring.
3There must be more to life than gloomy vampire manses. I’m going out to see it.
4Adventuring gets me the experience I need to take down my true vampiric objective.
5 Vampire hunting work isn’t cheap, and adventuring is no more dangerous, but potentially more profitable.
6 I can be more than a nameless, petty vampire hunter. I’ll prove it through adventuring.
7 The next step on my spiritual path is on the road of the adventurer.
8 I am hollowed out by the things I’ve seen and done. Adventuring can’t be worse.

The Tales of the Valiant Player’s Guide and Monster Vault are on sale now in PDF and VTT format.
Books are coming to backers and stores in June!
Visit the Kobold Press Discord for more info!

about Kelly Pawlik

Kelly started gaming after her second son was born in 2012. She delights in worldbuilding and prefers campaigns that contain an abundance of intrigue and romance. Kelly co-founded Dire Rugrat Publishing in 2015 and has worked on many projects with Kobold Press. In 2021 she released the first three novellas in her middle-grade science fiction/horror/urban fantasy series, The Olympic Vista Chronicles.

2 thoughts on “Dhampir lineage, heritage, and background for the Tales of the Valiant RPG”

  1. For Predatory Charm.

    I don’t think you should have it directly mention the bite like that because lineages and heritage can be used in multiple different type of combinations and not everyone has a bite.

    My suggestion, have the 20 on the d20 charisma check give a 1-minute (or less if you prefer) charm effect and then have the bite from the dhampir lineage consider anyone who is charmed by you a willing target (but then maybe ends the charm for attacking them). That way it indirectly helps the bite but is still beneficial for everyone else taking the heritage

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