Let’s end on a high note in honor of the spooky season. This is Vampires (1990) and is probably the best sourcebook for the Mayfair version of Chill. Which doesn’t entirely count because it is basically a reprint of a Pacesetter Chill sourcebook.

Like the Lycanthropes book, this one starts off with a history of vampires, though one written in an in-universe style, charting the discovered history of actual (un)living vampires of note. I am a sucker for the pure folklore of the other book, but this is actually very fun and does a good job of setting the stage for the dossiers on the NPC vampires that takes up the largest part of the book. Those NPC vampires provide broad cultural and historical strokes for vampires. Dracula and Elizabeth Bathory are present, of course. But there are details on an Indian vampire that might form the basis of the Rakshasa legends, an Aztec vampire and…ninja vampires? Well, they can’t all be winners. (Why has there never been a memorable exploration of the hopping Jiangshi vampire of China in an RPG?) The book also contains a scenario that converts the action of Bram Stoker’s Dracula into a Chill adventure, which is kind of neat (and substantially different from the version that was included in Pacesetter’s Chill Master’s Screen back in ‘84.)

Joe DeVelaco’s art is very nice throughout (though they are almost entirely color paintings rendered in black and white half-tone, which is a bummer). He’s real good at variations on the theme of semi-abstract portraits involving fangs. Good stuff.

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