A vampiric dragon is forever anchored to its hoard, much like a normal vampire craves its coffin. It appears much as it did as a living dragon, though its eyes gleam with a feral and predatory glint. It dreams only of death and evil, spreading legends of its treasure to draw in unwitting adventurers in order to create vampire spawn. Thankfully, such creatures are rare in the extreme, most often created by energy draining effects or unique confluences of negative energy.
Like normal vampires, vampiric dragons cast no shadows and throw no reflections in mirrors. They speak any languages they knew in life.
Creating A Vampiric Dragon
"Vampiric" is a template that can be added to any dragon of at least adult age (referred to hereafter as the base dragon).
The creature uses all the base dragon's statistics and special abilities except as noted here.
Size and Type: The creature's type changes to undead, and it loses any subtypes it had in life. Do not recalculate the creature's base attack bonus, saves, or skill points. Size is unchanged.
Hit Dice: The base dragon's Hit Dice remain the same, but it loses any Constitution bonus to its hit points (see Abilities, below). However, a vampiric dragon gains bonus hit points equal to four times its HD.
Armor Class: The base dragon's natural armor bonus improves by 2.
Attacks: A vampiric dragon retains all the attacks of the base dragon. Unlike typical vampires, a vampiric dragon does not gain slam attacks.
Special Attacks: A vampiric dragon retains all the special attacks of the base dragon and also gains those noted below. Saves have a DC of 10 + 1/2 vampiric dragon's HD + vampiric dragon's Cha modifier unless noted otherwise.
Blood Drain (Ex): A vampiric dragon can suck blood from a living victim one size category smaller than itself or larger. If it pins the foe with whom it is grappling, it drains blood, dealing 1d4 points of Constitution drain each round the pin is maintained.
Charm (Su): The voice of a vampiric dragon can bewitch listeners. This requires a full-round action by the vampiric dragon, but any creature within 30 feet per age category of the base dragon who can hear its voice must make a Will save or become charmed (as charm monster). The charm is immediately broken if the vampiric dragon uses its frightful presence within range of the charmed individual or makes an attack against the charmed individual. A vampiric dragon need not see its targets to use this power.
Create Spawn (Su): A humanoid or monstrous humanoid slain by a vampiric dragon's energy drain attack rises as a vampire spawn (see Vampire Spawn) 1d4 days after death.
If a vampiric dragon instead drains its victim's Constitution to 0, the victim returns as a spawn if it had 4 or fewer Hit Dice and as a vampire if it had 5 or more HD. In either case, the new vampire or spawn is under the command of the vampiric dragon that created it and remains enslaved until its master's death.
An adult or older dragon slain by a vampiric dragon's blood drain returns as a vampiric dragon under the command of the vampiric dragon that created it, as noted above. Young adult or younger dragons slain by its blood drain attack, and any dragons slain by its energy drain attack, rise instead mindless zombie dragons.
Domination (Su): A vampiric dragon can crush an opponent's will just by looking into its eyes. This ability works similarly to a gaze attack, except that the vampiric dragon must use a standard action, and those merely looking at the creature are not affected. Anyone the vampiric dragon targets must succeed on a Will save or fall instantly under the vampiric dragon's influence as though by a dominate monster spell (caster level 18th). The ability has a range of 30 feet plus 10 feet per age category of the base dragon.
Energy Drain (Su): A living creature hit by a vampiric dragon's claw attack gains one negative level.
Special Qualities: A vampiric dragon retains all the special qualities of the base dragon (except for any subtypes it possessed) and gains those noted below. If the base dragon had any immunities based on its subtype (such as immunity to fire for the fire subtype), it keeps those immunities despite losing the subtype.
Fast Healing (Ex): A vampiric dragon heals 5 hit points of damage each round so long as it has at least I hit point. If reduced to 0 hit points or lower, a vampiric dragon automatically assumes gaseous form (fly speed 40 feet, otherwise as the spell) and attempts to escape. It must reach its hoard within 2 hours or be utterly destroyed. (It can travel up to 18 miles in 2 hours.) Once at rest upon its hoard, it rises to 1 hit point after 1 hour, then resumes healing at the rate of 5 hit points per round. For obvious reasons, a vampiric dragon prefers to keep its hoard well concealed from adventurers and would-be thieves.
Resistance (Ex): A vampiric dragon has resistance to cold 20 and electricity 20.
Turn Resistance (Ex): A vampiric dragon has +4 turn resistance.
Undead Traits: A vampiric dragon is immune to mind-effecting effects, poison, magic sleep effects, paralysis, stunning, disease, death effects, and any effect that requires a Fortitude save unless it also works on objects or is harmless. It is not subject to critical hits, nonlethal damage, ability damage to its physical ability scores, ability drain, energy drain, fatigue, exhaustion, or death from massive damage. It cannot be raised, and resurrection works only if it is willing. It has darkvision out to 60 feet (unless the base creature had a greater range).
Vampiric Weaknesses: Vampiric dragons share the typical vampire's vulnerability to sunlight. Direct sunlight slows a vampiric dragon, allowing it only a single standard action or move action each round. A vampiric dragon can survive exposure to direct sunlight for a number of consecutive rounds equal to its age category, after which it is utterly destroyed. Driving a wooden stake through a vampire dragon's heart slays it, just as with a normal vampire, (though for larger dragons, you'll need a stake the size of a spear).
Unlike other vampires, vampiric dragons are not injured by immersion in water. Vampiric dragons are not repelled by garlic or mirrors (though they don't keep mirrors in their hoards), and they can freely cross running water. They cannot enter a home unless invited, but most simply destroy the home and then pick through the rubble for their victims.
Saves: As undead, vampiric dragons are immune to anything that requires a Fortitude save unless it affects objects.
Abilities: Increase from the base dragon as follows: Str +4, Dex +6, Int +2, Wis +2, Cha +4. As undead creatures, vampiric dragons have no Constitution score.
Skills: Vampiric dragons have a +8 racial bonus on Bluff, Hide, Listen, Move Silently, Search, Sense Motive, and Spot checks.
Feats: Vampiric dragons gain Alertness, Combat Reflexes, Dodge, Improved Initiative, and Lightning Reflexes, assuming the base dragon meets the prerequisites and doesn't already have the feats.
Organization: Solitary or guarded (1 plus 2-5 vampire spawn).
Challenge Rating: Same as the base dragon +2.
Treasure: Triple standard.
Alignment: Always chaotic evil.
Advancement: Up to +2 HD.
Level Adjustment: +5.
Sample vampiric dragon: Vampiric Mature Adult Red Dragon.