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What exactly does sunlight do to GW vampires?

Joined
Mar 6, 2012
Messages
154
#1
Instant death? Slow burns? Horrible pain? Moderate discomfort?

What little fluff I've read, sunlight almost seems to be a non-factor. At the very least it should make it hard to travel overland, at least not without giving away one's position to one's enemies. Manfred seems to catch EVERYONE by surprise in the End Times. How? Either he has to bunker down in the day or summon unnatural darkness. If there is a creeping wave of darkness, anyone should be able to see him coming?
 

Lynks

Lord of RAW
Staff member
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Dec 29, 2010
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2,262
#2
Depending on the willpower of the vampire, they are affected differently. The stronger a vampire's willpower and the less they fear the sun actually hurting them, the less it does. Manfred is fully capable of walking around in the sunlight, at least without physical pain- it's not clear whether he has reduced faculties. The vampire ulrika had horrible burns in the sun but was able to walk around in very heavy clothing, most strigoi basically just spontaneously combust.
 

Get of W'soran

CN's Lord of Masks
True Blood
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Apr 23, 2008
Messages
9,239
#3
In the end times novel Mannfred seems to avoid the sun and I wouldn't call his will weak, this is shown when he's fighting a certain someone and a ray of light appears (from the otherwise cloud covered sky) causing him to leap backwards out of the way.

I'm not sure if it just varies by author and as fluff changes with edition.
 

Macarian

Vampire Insomniac
Joined
Jan 19, 2014
Messages
114
#4
The way I understand it, the sun has different effects on different vampires. According to the Genevieve books younger vampires are less effected by the sun, flowing water and things like garlic and silver. When vampires age their strengths and weaknesses apparently become greater. The effects vary greatly from lethargy, reduced healing and speed to burns and spontaneous combustion. It is also dependent on wheter or not there is direct exposure on the skin.

I remember a piece of fluff from the previous armybook about a Necrarch who is attacked by his necromancer apprentice in his crypt during the day. The Necrarch wins barely and comments how the Necromancer was smart enough to attack him during the day when he is at his weakest. So, even though there was no direct sunlight the vampire was weakened by the time of day. Possibly the different bloodlines are affected differently.

Coming back to your question about Mannfred, I suppose he traveled in disguise a lot. Probably in a coach with blackened windows. Maybe he used magical means to 'teleport' around. Maybe he wore a nice hat with a big rim to block the sun :) Vampires tend to only summon big clouds when they need to fight battles so they can move freely across the battlefield.
 

Get of W'soran

CN's Lord of Masks
True Blood
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Apr 23, 2008
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#5
I think the answer is a sadly boring one, it just changes depending on when the stuff was written and who wrote it.

General rule of thumb from the army books seems to be the older they are then the less it affects them. I also think Games Workshop took a lot of stuff from White Wolf's RP settings, like how faith and belief can influence things. E.g. Vampire is relatively young and low generation but knows the sun won't hurt him, refuses to believe it can and thus it doesn't (see the von Carstein Trilogy for the example with Fitz and Skellan).
 
Joined
Aug 26, 2014
Messages
22
#7
i think i read somewhere that the vampire could cause a cloudy sky making it possible to fight during the day.

Edit: what ever the answer i'm ok with it as long as its not "sparkles in sunlight".
 

Irisado

Ancient Vampire Lord
Staff member
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May 22, 2010
Messages
618
#8
So I guess I can wing it with my own fluff pieces just like the GW writers do. Huzzah. The sun allows vampires to travel at Speed of Plot.
Yes, you can wing it in this case :).

There's no consistency regarding how vampires are affected by the sun in GW lore. In fact, had it not been for some of the previous posts in this topic, I'd have struggled to remember much mention of the sun in GW's background writing.

My advice is to just be consistent in how you approach the impact of the sun on different generations of vampires. That would make any writing which you produce more enjoyable to read in my opinion.
 

Get of W'soran

CN's Lord of Masks
True Blood
Joined
Apr 23, 2008
Messages
9,239
#9
i think i read somewhere that the vampire could cause a cloudy sky making it possible to fight during the day.

Edit: what ever the answer i'm ok with it as long as its not "sparkles in sunlight".
Yes, you can wing it in this case :).

There's no consistency regarding how vampires are affected by the sun in GW lore. In fact, had it not been for some of the previous posts in this topic, I'd have struggled to remember much mention of the sun in GW's background writing.

My advice is to just be consistent in how you approach the impact of the sun on different generations of vampires. That would make any writing which you produce more enjoyable to read in my opinion.
This is good advice!

But allow me to give examples of how I've handled it in the past (not necessarily the same as the advice given though!):

I have written this weakness into most of my characters and stories, the weakness effects them all different.

- My youngest character I've written some about (Sigmund von Muller) feels shitty in the sun, (gets migraines and feels ill) but it doesn't kill him although it weakens him.
- My 3rd generation vampire assassin Akarin is utterly unaffected by the sun because this is what his sire Fitz von Carstein taught him, that it was mere superstition and mental weakness of vampires that let the sun harm them.
- My 2nd Generation, 1000+ year old vampire Karl von Carstien hates moving in sunlight and is weakened by the Sun but not harmed.
- My oldest and most powerful characters are a pair of Necrarch's who were sired in Lahmia (over 4000 years old and master magi) during the dawn of vampirekind burn immediately in the sun due to believing this for thousands of years and their immortal minds are too inflexible to understand that it doesn't need to be this way.

Basically for my characters it's all down to the power of their belief in their own strength and weaknesses in this regard (the same for religious symbols, crossing running water, going into homes uninvited etc).

That's how I spin it and it's not based on any concrete lore, it's just how I like to do it. The effect on the vampire's isn't consistent with power and age but it is consistent with the underlying reason.

My Point
is that yes, you can do it any way you see fit! :D
 
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