Vampirism in Daggerfall is a condition that can affect the player after being infected by a vampiric foe. There are numerous advantages to becoming a vampire, but the afflicted will have to feed every day in order to slake their thirst.
Although vampirism is thought of as a disease, it is not affected by weaknesses and resistances like other in-game diseases; only lycanthropes are truly immune to infection. Whenever you are injured by a Vampire or Vampire Ancient, there is a 1.22% chance that you will contract the disease. Level 1 characters cannot become infected.
Once you have been infected, the next time you sleep you will experience a cutscene depicting an ominous dream, where a voice will tell you "Your sleep is troubled by nightmares of a beautiful woman whom you murder in a dark place."
For the next 72 hours, the disease can be cured using a potion, spell, or temple healer. After 72 hours have passed, your vampirism will become permanent. You will receive a notification saying "Death is not always eternal. For some it is merely a time of waiting. Now is your time of waiting. Be patient and all will be revealed..."
After receiving the notification, you will awaken in a random crypt. Your character portrait will change and depict you standing in a graveyard. You will gain the benefits and drawbacks associated with being a vampire, and will also possess all of the spells and benefits associated with the bloodline of the region in which you died. Some time after you awaken as an undead, you will be able to undergo the Rite of Acceptance.
When you become a vampire, you will gain:
- +20 to every attribute except Intelligence
- +30 to Climbing, Critical Strike, Hand-to-Hand, Jumping, Running, and Stealth
- Levitation, Calm Humanoid, and Charm Mortal spells
- Other spells granted by specific bloodlines
- Immunities to paralysis and disease
All spells granted by vampirism cost 1/4th of the normal spell points it would take to cast them.
These advantages will last for as long as you remain a vampire, and will be removed if you cure your condition.
After becoming a vampire, you will take 12 damage every 4 minutes (20 seconds in real-time) when standing in sunlight or holy places, and will need to feed on blood every 24 hours. Killing any living creature will count as feeding. If you fail to feed every 24 hours, you will be unable to use the rest menu even to loiter, and so will be unable to regenerate resources or pass the time. Most creatures encountered are considered to be "living" and will slake a vampire's thirst.
Another disadvantage is that vampires cannot initiate fast travel during the day.
Since you have technically "died" in the process of becoming a vampire, your legal reputation in all regions is reset. You are now a new, previously unknown individual in the eyes of the law.
In addition, all guild memberships are revoked. For most guilds, you can simply rejoin and receive a promotion to your previous rank after 28 days have passed. However, the Thieves Guild and the Dark Brotherhood present their own complications. Because you are only offered membership in these guilds once, acquiring vampirism after being admitted means you cannot rejoin them again as a vampire. However, if you have not joined such guilds, they do retain the option to join even in your undead state, and you simply need to trigger the conditions from which an invitation is extended.
Guild membership is further complicated when it comes to curing vampirism; see Curing Vampirism below.
There are nine bloodlines of the Iliac Bay, each with their own unique benefits but all sharing the same quests. These nine bloodlines each have benefits specific to them and an area of dominion. You will automatically join the bloodline of the area you were infected in, and gain the bloodline's benefits.
The following table provides a summary of each bloodline and the associated benefits:
|+20 to Intelligence Attribute†
|Alik'r Desert, Antiphyllos, Bergama, Dak'fron, Tigonus
|Ice Storm, Wildfire
|Anticlere, Ilessan Hills, Shalgora
|Dragontail Mountains, Ephesus, Kozanset, Santaki, Totambu
|Invisibility Spell, Silence Spell
|Alcaire, Isle of Balfiera, Koegria, Menevia, The Orsinium Area, Wrothgarian Mountains. This is a default bloodline.
|Free Action Spell‡
|Bhoriane, Gavaudon, Lainlyn, Mournoth, Satakalaam, Wayrest
|Resist Cold Spell, Resist Fire Spell, Resist Shock Spell
|Abibon-Gora, Ayasofya, Cybiades, Kairou, Myrkwasa, Pothago, Sentinel
|Daenia, Dwynnen, Ykalon, Urvaius
|Betony, Daggerfall, Glenpoint, Glenumbra Moors, Kambria, Tulune
|The Travelers League
† This boost works differently from the normal vampire attribute bonuses and can result in Intelligence loss if vampirism is cured. See "Curing Vampirism" below
‡ Some would debate the value of Free Action to one who is immune to paralysis
As a vampire you have access to a new set of quests in service of your bloodline. However, unlike in most factions, you can not ask for quests at will but instead must wait for your help to be requested by letter. There is no reputation requirement for any vampire quest, they are all available from the start.
The following quests may be sent to vampires:
|General Quests and Information
|The Rite of Acceptance
|The time has come for you to learn of your heritage...
|Kill a member of a lesser bloodline to prove your allegiance to your vampire clan.
|The Vampire's Letter
|I need you to deliver a letter to an ally of (bloodline)...
|Deliver a letter on behalf of your vampire bloodline.
|A rival vampire has moved into my territory. You are going to kill it...
|Deal with a vampire ancient from a rival bloodline.
|An Old Enemy
|One of your old meals has come back out of the grave...
|Dispose of a vampire you inadvertently spawned.
|I want you to get the notes for this research and bring it back to me...
|Obtain a sorcerer's research on vampirism.
|The Vampire Relic
|We have a small task for you to perform to prove your resolution to be one of us...
|Obtain a vampire relic from a local Mages Guild.
|We are having difficulty with a local warlord...
|Persuade a local warlord to become an ally for your bloodline.
|A Test of Determination
|The ancient of our tribe, your bloodfather, has asked that you investigate a matter that disturbs him greatly...
|Confront a Daedric Coven that wants to challenge the bloodline for dominance.
|There is a dangerous enemy of our tribe here in (region)...
|Escort one vampire to another, while fleeing a vampire hunter.
|The ancients of (bloodline) are to meet shortly in (region), but as if in mockery, a group of lycanthropes have set up residence...
|In preparation for a planned vampire gathering, clear a local dungeon of lycanthropes.
|Cure for Vampirism
|I am sure that your "kinfolk" have not told you this, but vampirism can be cured...
|Find a cure for your vampirism.
Quests Featuring Vampires
The following quests involve Vampires and Vampire Ancients, useful should players seek to become infected:
- Business with Vampires
- Deadly Diplomacy
- The Mad Slayer
- The Princess
- A Special Mixture
- Unauthorized Absence
In general, vampires only begin to be encountered in dungeons after reaching character level 9, and become fairly common at higher levels.
In order to cure yourself of vampirism you must either complete Cure for Vampirism, a quest started by receiving a random letter from a vampire hunter, or begin A Special Mixture, a random quest you can receive from witch covens, and drink the potion (failing the quest and losing a bit of reputation).
Being cured of vampirism restores the old affiliations of the character, including prior memberships and rank in all guilds. If membership in the Thieves Guild or Dark Brotherhood was lost in the transition to vampire, it will be regained. If however the character joined the Thieves Guild or Dark Brotherhood as a vampire, membership will be lost when giving up vampirism.
After curing vampirism, it is possible to contract the disease again. Becoming a vampire again will restore the affiliations from when the character had last been a vampire. In effect, there are two different versions of the character, mortal and vampire, which can be toggled back and forth. However, it is only possible to become part of a single vampiric bloodline, which will be restored every time the disease is contracted again.
It is also possible to contract lycanthropy once vampirism has been cured.
Note that an Anthotis vampire will have their Intelligence reduced by 20 points when cured, regardless of how many points they actually gained from joining the bloodline (the bonus will not boost Intelligence past 100). This will result in a character who possessed more than 80 Intelligence before becoming a vampire to find their Intelligence reduced to 80 when cured. The rest of the attribute bonuses from vampirism do not exhibit this behavior.
- As a vampire, it is easy to find oneself in a town but unable to rest at the tavern to heal or pass the time. If it is night and you are confident in your combat abilities, go outdoors and try attacking any door of a building until the guards come running and kill one of them, then run until it is safe to make use of the tavern again. If it is day however, you may want to take care in killing a townsperson, as the damage taken from sunlight will be treated as if you were caught by the guards, leading to court and/or a reputation loss. It is possible to wait for sun damage to occur and then use the 20 second window between moments of damage to kill an NPC and duck inside a tavern to rest.
- Another possibility for retaining access to a location to feed is to learn the spell Recall and keep an anchor set to the interior of a dungeon like Privateer's Hold.
- Unlike lycanthropes, vampires do not gain an immunity to iron and steel weapons.