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"What happens when a vampire and a werewolf bite each other?" Topic

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abdul666lw Inactive Member04 Jan 2013 10:50 a.m. PST

Warning: free-wheeling sequence of thoughts!

The answer for apart depends upon our general approach of 'paranormal' abilities / features: as 'biological / parapsychological' (Sci-Fi) or as 'magical' (Fantasy): mostly a matter of chosen paradigm ("any advanced enough science cannot be distinguished from magic"), for me I favor the 'rationalist' approach over the 'superstitious' one.

Yet indeed werewolves present a special difficulty to a 'scientifically credible' interpretation.
Most other 'mythical' humanoids can easily be understood as mutated or infected humans: it's more obvious for 'Sci-Fi' ones, e.g. in the 40K universe Squats and Ratlings are mutants, Ogryns are genetically modified humans, Orks are the product of advanced genetical engineering having added an endonuclear 'enriched cyanobacteria' symbiont; Eldars (Elves elsewhere) can be seen as mutants who do not age link -having soon isolated themselves from short-lived humans who would squeeze them to extract and analyze or drink their body fluids, Tau as the inbred descendants of a mutated religious prophet with a 4-fingers mutation! Elsewhere Shambleaus link can result from the contamination by a Coelenterate ectodermic parasite with time turned symbiotic.
But most 'fantasy' humanoids can also be explained 'biologically' as infected humans.
For vampires it's the 'Matheson model' from 'I'm a legend': the parasite is almost a symbiont, given it stops aging YouTube link and gives outstanding regenerative and athletic abilities.; the most negative side-effect -besides the psychotic / schizophrenic ones- seems to be an acute form of porphyria link ;
For zombies (from 'Brain Dead' to 'Resident Evil' and [REC] -'ghouls' in Hellsing Ultimate) it could be a variant of rabies inducing a transitory apparent death: while blood circulation and respiration are interrupted the tissues are deprived of oxygen -and the brain is the first organ to irreversibly suffer from anoxia. The pathogen seems to mutate frequently, the diverse forms causing different duration of 'death' and thus different degrees of damage, zombies varying from tottering types with the brain and motility of a snail to fast-moving ones still 'smart' enough to clumsily use simple tools and weapons.
Ghouls were never seen as 'undead' but as degenerated corpse-eaters. Cannibalism favors the spreading of 'laughing disease' link ; imbecility and the peculiar 'niche' favor inbreeding thus 'snowballing' genetical degeneration link .

But werewolves are not so easily 'rationalized' because of their supposed fast and quickly reversible skeleton changes link / link (not to mention their contempt for the Law of Mass Conservation link ). The most parsimonious interpretation is to suppose that during their 'crises' -akin to the berserk rage / ríastrad- they *believe* to be wolves, behave as such including in body language and somehow *suggest* blurry 'wolfish' images: thus it's quite 'logical' to use 'shapechanged' figurines in our games, since they represent what witnesses *believe* to see. But actually only soft tissues are altered -a kind of rictus- as in 'excited vampires' in Buffy or when Dr Jekyll turns to Mr Hyde; meaning that alternatively we could use 'normal' minis after headswaps gave them 'Dark Elf' or 'Neanderthal' features (for us tricorne fans TMP link hat and wig would have fallen, women's elaborate hairdo be messed up, during the 'transformation').

If we so interpret lycanthropy as the result of a rabies-like bite-transmitted infection -not very different in the end from the one causing vampirism, both give regenerating potential and increased physical characteristics- we can tentatively answer the initial question: 'What happens if a vampire and a werewolf bite each other?'
In the 'Underworld' universe when they blood mix they gain the abilities of the other type and get rid of their own 'flaws' (vampire's photosensitivity e.g.). Somehow this makes sense: microbial parasites can exchange genetic material when they share a host (that's how influenza A virus H1N1 originating from birds became aggressive to man after 'genetic enrichment' in swine). This may explain the common taboo on 'cross-mating' (we know a few noteworthy exceptions, so it's cultural without biological / rational grounds): it would create 'superbeings' who would out-compete both parental bloodlines. The traditional hostility between vampires and werewolves goes far beyond what is to be expected from predators with partly overlapping niches but has all the characteristics of basic racism ("we are superior to humans, 'they' are half-beast inferior to them") obsessed with 'blood purity' and perceiving cross-breeding as the worst form of zoophilia.

Then how could the 'infection' be transmitted to the offsprings? From the father it can be transmitted in the same way as venereal diseases / STI (think AIDS, also transmissible through saliva), from the mother in utero contamination across the placenta are known in 'The Real World™'. And anyway it can be suspected that vampires and werewolves even in 'human' form tend to bite (gently?) when… frolicking, insuring the cross-contamination.

But can vampires breed true? Populations with an extremely long life expectancy are in danger of overcrowding -leading to starvation and eventually cannibalism: so natural selection is likely to have established near-sterility (Highlander-type almost invulnerable 'immortals' are fortunately sterile).
[Btw Elves / Eldars are another race facing the same demographic menace, and children among them are almost unknown. The limiting factor of population growth is the number of fertile females -and it is to note that among Eldar Guardians, the general levy from the whole population of the Craftworld identifiable women account for far less than half. A natural regulatory process may explain the androgynous look of many Elves ('All Elves are fags' every Dwarf will tell you): almost half of them would be females whose sexual maturity is blocked by the pheromone of 'mature' women, as demonstrated in overcrowd populations of mice. Of course such restriction on reproduction would also have rather drastic cultural and social consequences.]
Now, sexually mature female vampire abound, yet their fertility is subject to debate -more so seemingly than that of were-shewolves. But in any case there does not seem to be any restriction to the transmission of the vampire characteristics to a vampire-werewolf half-breed by one or two gentle parental bites?

Comments welcome!

Personal logo John the OFM Supporting Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 10:53 a.m. PST

To much science.
And pseudo-science.

I prefer to hand wave it all away as supernatural.

WarrenB Inactive Member04 Jan 2013 10:56 a.m. PST

Comments welcome!

I don't think I can repeat mine on TMP. Not the initial one anyway. So instead, here's something much more fun and interesting:

YouTube link

JCBJCB Inactive Member04 Jan 2013 10:56 a.m. PST


Murvihill04 Jan 2013 11:05 a.m. PST

In a fantasy world vampirism, lycanthropy and zombieism are all magical diseases. They are blood-born, but the effects are magical in nature and thus can't be explained by natural law. Magic is a chaotic force disrupting biology, chemistry and physics wherever it is present.
Magic also explains why there can be beings that are good and evil (in a fantasy world). Orcs have evil magic in them, elves have good magic in them. Humans and dwarves are immune to the good and evil magic and fall back on their own predilections. Obviously the blood-born magical pathogens would drive out any good magic and the being would turn evil.

That's my rationalization anyway. Your mileage may vary…

vojvoda Inactive Member04 Jan 2013 11:07 a.m. PST

The real question is what happens when a Zombie bites a Vampire and vise versa? Get historical for pete's sake.

James Mattes

Personal logo flooglestreet Supporting Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 11:15 a.m. PST

Hairy hickeys?

richarDISNEY04 Jan 2013 11:26 a.m. PST

Sparkly hunky teens with no shirts?
I saw that in Twilight… laugh

Doug MSC Sponsoring Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 11:27 a.m. PST

Nothing, there are no such things as vampires and werewolfs.

Frederick Supporting Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 11:31 a.m. PST

I don't know what would happen, but one thing for sure

Their kids would be mean as Hell

TGerritsen Supporting Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 11:45 a.m. PST

I'm going to say they cancel each other out and they become normal people. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Musketier Supporting Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 11:52 a.m. PST

What happens when TMPers run out of hobby subjects to discuss?

Personal logo The Virtual Armchair General Sponsoring Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 12:10 p.m. PST

"What happens when a vampire and a werewolf bite each other?"

Nancy Pelosi.

Personal logo Dale Hurtt Supporting Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 12:55 p.m. PST

Does anyone make a miniature of a vampire and a werewolf biting each other?

Wolfprophet Inactive Member04 Jan 2013 1:11 p.m. PST

Another horrible teen supernatural love novel I suspect.

Phil Hall04 Jan 2013 1:12 p.m. PST

Well, in the Spike TV series DEADLIEST WARRIORS at the final battle between the Vamps and Zeds, the winning Vamp had been bitten by a Zed and turned Zed. So I suspect you would get a WereVamp or a VampWolf. Or both.

Disco Joe04 Jan 2013 1:28 p.m. PST

Gee The Virtual Armchair General I thought the answer was John Boehner.

Mithmee Supporting Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 1:31 p.m. PST

Nothing since their initial condition prevents them from being turned again.

Though that does not mean that they still can't kill each other.

SBminisguy04 Jan 2013 2:02 p.m. PST

@Phil -- fun episode of Deadliest Warrior!


Covert Walrus Supporting Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 2:07 p.m. PST

You get something like the movie BLOOD! By Andy Milligan? ( Worth watching . . . which is something I don't often say about an Andy Milligan film )

nsolomon9904 Jan 2013 2:17 p.m. PST

You need to watch "Underworld" – there are now 4 movies all up, all of them pretty good.

sneakgun04 Jan 2013 2:18 p.m. PST

Three Shades of Black, a new trilogy.

Personal logo Waco Joe Supporting Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 2:19 p.m. PST

I remember a fantasy novel, maybe by Piers Anthony, about a married couple who shared a rare form of lycanthropy. Whenever the moon turned full they would change into whatever living form was physcially closest to them. They mentioned they would try to be sleeping next to each other when the moon turned so they could play with a little gender bending if you know what I mean, wink, wink, nudge nudge.

Deathwing04 Jan 2013 2:21 p.m. PST

Not one mention of the Ghostbuster cartoon where a whole village of Werewolves battled a clan of vampires Vampires. Silly episode, but when bitten a werewolf became a vampire and a vampire would became a werewolf. It was an instantaneous transformation to.


goragrad04 Jan 2013 2:21 p.m. PST

TVAG – wasn't that a zombie and a vampire?

abdul666lw Inactive Member04 Jan 2013 2:26 p.m. PST

And 3 of the 4 'Underworld' feature Kate Beckinsale as the female hero (I specially like the last images of this video: YouTube link )

John the OFM: you *enjoy* telling children that Santa Claus does not exist, don't you? evil grin

skinkmasterreturns04 Jan 2013 2:56 p.m. PST

Dracula shaves more often and the Wolfman develops a thing for capes.

Lion in the Stars04 Jan 2013 2:57 p.m. PST

It depends on the mythos.

Most assume that the two virii aggressively deal with the other infection. I mean, long life/rapid healing implies a seriously overcharged immune system, which shows in the near-anaphylaxis reactions to garlic and/or silver.

One recent version (Sanguine Chronicles) has a main character whose mother was attacked by both a werewolf and a vampire. She died giving birth to him, but because the two attacks were on the same night, HE is a werepire. Not quite as strong as a true werewolf, but quite enough to wipe the floor with young vampires.

Another recent version (Dance in the Vampire Bund) has werewolves suffering apoptosis if bitten by a vampire, but that was an intentionally-created mutation to enforce a peace between the weres and the vamps. Or at least that's what the vampires were told, since one were was bitten by a vamp and survived. Turned into one serious badass, too.

I really prefer the 'either/or' ideas, myself.

Felbah Inactive Member04 Jan 2013 3:15 p.m. PST

You get a Varepire.

CorpCommander04 Jan 2013 3:16 p.m. PST

what if a zombie bites a werewolf that bites a vampire that bites your mother – what does your mother become… well besides "no longer family"

skippy0001 Supporting Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 3:20 p.m. PST

Nothing-I saw it on True Blood so it has to be true.

Zephyr104 Jan 2013 3:41 p.m. PST

"But can vampires breed true?"

As vampires are dead to begin with, I don't see any chance of that happening unless they make a visit to the sperm or egg bank where they previously made a deposit from when they were alive.

But to be facetious about your question, the vampire would be spitting hair out of it's mouth, and the werewolf would go searching for a good, minty mouthwash…. ;-)

Personal logo Don Manser Supporting Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 4:22 p.m. PST


Old Glory Sponsoring Member of TMP04 Jan 2013 6:15 p.m. PST

The vampire turns into a "werepire"
The werewolf turns into a "vampwolf"

Russ Dunaway

SECURITY MINISTER CRITTER Inactive Member04 Jan 2013 9:43 p.m. PST

Dale what scale for those minis?
NO SANTA??? You lie!!!!!

Valator Inactive Member04 Jan 2013 9:46 p.m. PST

I used to know the answer to this question, but vampires now sparkle in the sunlight and knock up wallflowers who become supervampires. I think… my wife is the font of knowledge on this subject and when I ask her about werewolves, she starts drooling over the kid from Shark Boy and Lava Girl. Sorry I couldn't be of more help.

Dan 055 Inactive Member04 Jan 2013 11:45 p.m. PST

They explode.

GhostofRebecaBlack Inactive Member05 Jan 2013 8:00 a.m. PST

They become straight men?

Aapsych2005 Jan 2013 9:26 a.m. PST

YouTube link

Some clarification here.

Personal logo etotheipi Sponsoring Member of TMP05 Jan 2013 10:34 a.m. PST

PETA files a lawsuit against the vampire.

Personal logo Don Manser Supporting Member of TMP05 Jan 2013 2:00 p.m. PST

Lists of both posted in the media.

All fangs banned.

Personal logo andygamer Supporting Member of TMP06 Jan 2013 7:39 a.m. PST

John's never believed in Sanity Clause.

abdul666lw Inactive Member29 Jan 2013 5:02 a.m. PST

Too much pseudo-science.

Then don't look at my flights of fancy about "On the origin and biology of Shambleaux" link evil grin

FreemanL29 Jan 2013 6:03 a.m. PST

All it means is after he drinks your blood, he will want to bury you in the backyard next to your "lost" wallet and an old bone.

Norman D Landings Inactive Member29 Jan 2013 10:54 a.m. PST

Reckon you've answered your own question, Abdul.

If you want to treat both conditions as diseases, then any degree of cross-infection, species-jumping, mutation or whatever is perfectly explicable.
It just requires a little more of the same pseudo-medical exposition which provides your disease-theory background fluff.

I don't find that personally satisfying, because I enjoy the body of folklore and legend which forms the basis of the 'supernatural' Vampire & Werewolf models.

The disease-theory, for me, smacks of trying to rationalize the magic out of the background.
And it's bricks without straw, no matter how much jargon is ladled onto it.

Maybe there's also an element which comes from my background in medicine.
When somebody starts to pontificate on a pseudomedical theme, they lose my sympathy at the first bum note.

As far as folklore goes…

What happens when a vampire bites a werewolf?

Absolutely nothing.
Traditionally, it took some sort of action on the part of the vampire to 'turn' victim, other than just a bite.
(complete draining of blood, having the victim taste the vampire's blood, etc.)
The point is – Vampires didn't create a new vampire with every bite.

What happens when a werewolf bites a vampire?

Absolutely nothing.
The idea that lycanthropy is spread through a bite has zero to do with werewolf folklore.
It's purely an invention of Victorian novelists.

abdul666lw Inactive Member29 Jan 2013 2:18 p.m. PST

@ Norman: "When somebody starts to pontificate on a pseudomedical theme": was I sounding 'pontificating'? If it was the case, sorry, it was not my intent (English is not my native tongue). I was just having fun toying with ideas and trying to explore the logical consequences of some premises.

I love Fantasy in (historical of not) Ancient – Medieval settings; but in more 'technological' ones (from early Renaissance on) I favor 'Sci-Fi' (i.e. pseudo-scientific) interpretations over 'Fantasy' (involving the 'supernatural'). Simply because to me (and it's 100% personal) this is more consistent with the general background.
I'm perfectly at ease with Odin roaming the Earth and the Triple Morrigan appearing as three crows 'in their' times. And with Fées in medieval settings: but in most modern times I prefer to see them as humans coming from a 'parallel' universe' through a 'portal' (such as the 'Hellmouth' in Sunnydale^-^) -again, 100% personal.

Hence in 'modern' contexts e.g. for vampirism I favor the 'Matheson model' over the 'curse' explanation. *Pseudo* science I willingly reckon -but no more 'far fetched / weird' than in most Science Fiction works- 'explaining' rationally (!!!) what was seen as 'supernatural' in superstitious earlier times (the 'traditional folklore'). Think 'Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus' vs 'Carmilla' or 'Dracula'. And, yes, that's deliberately trying to rationalize the magic out of the background -in times set after Francis Bacon.
(And the borderline between Fantasy and Science-Fiction is sometimes blurry: in Keyes' 'Age of Unreason' series Newton discovers the Laws of Alchemy: Fantasy or Sci-Fi? Certainly the tone of the books is that of SF novels.)
Just for my personal satisfaction I 'rewrote in my head' the backgrounds of 'Buffy' and 'Warhammer 40K' along those 'pseudo-biology' lines that irritate you peace

Let's say that I prefer to leave magic to magical times, thus unless in harmony with the cultural background, I prefer to re-interpret the 'supernatural' with pseudo-science.
45 years of biology at the univ leave indelible scars old fart

Norman D Landings Inactive Member29 Jan 2013 4:10 p.m. PST

Were you pontificating?
No, not at all, mi amigo – I wasn't using the term in any accusatory sense.
Just a tactless choice of term on my part. No offence need be taken.

I, personally, have never been able to look at pseudo-scientific explanations and find them convincing enough to differentiate them from the folklore of earlier ages…

And – that being the case – I choose to go with the folklore of earlier ages.
Not because it's any 'better'.
But because neither mythology nor pseudo-science is convincing in any factual way, but mythology at least has a certain authenticity in the fabric of the subject material.

I'm happy enough to suspend that when playing in settings where pseudo-scientific principles apply: Resident Evil's "T-Virus" setting, for example.

And I have to say… when I do reference pseudo-science, I'm perfectly happy to do so without inverted commas or any sarcasm. It's BS – but when indulging in BS, I do so 'Out and Proud'.

I would point out that very few pseudo-scientific vampire/werewolf rationales are, actually, totally pseudo-scientific.
Most reach a kind of limit of rationalization… then abandon the junk science and incorporate supernatural elements anyway!

Examples would be the 'Blade' series… it starts out treating vampirism as an infection, with vampirism treated as an infection, with all the pseudo-scientific window-dressing that involves.
And then… a ritual to reincarnate the Blood God.
Aaaaand we're done with the science.

All fun to kick around with.

abdul666lw Inactive Member30 Jan 2013 5:34 a.m. PST

Science Fiction almost always implies pseudo-science. Jules Verne's descriptions sounded 'serious' but did not hold water in some details; even in the description of what happened to be closest to a later realization, the Nautilus, he discreetly cheated and implied what by his time was pseudo-science.

Then given that on the one hand most of the 'supernatural' can (with some good will) receive a 'materialist' explanation, and on the other hand any science advanced enough cannot be distinguished from magic, the choice between the two is mostly a matter of personal preference / prejudice.peace

But, since they are alternate explanations of the same observations, they cannot coexist in the same setting (if deemed 'real', by contrast to the personal, and possibly erroneous, interpretation by a given character). That is the flaw in the 'Blade' example you mention: a change of paradigm along the scenario.
A flaw that could have be avoided if, as often done, the so-called 'God' was actually a powerful extra-terrestrial entity. The series of material manipulation described as a ritual could involve sacrifice -not for the blood itself but for a great burst of 'psychic energy' (pure gibberish, but 'rationalist' sounding ^-^)

But since interpretation is controversial, it may be best not to have one at all. Some 35 years ago (already?) I 'masterized' a 'swashbuckling' RPG campaign set in a mid-18th C. alternate France where the Fronde had essentially triumphed (in order to be allowed to play '3 musketeers'-like adventures by the time of justaucorps and tricornes). A few 'abnormal' elements sometimes crept in but I carefully avoided to make clear if they had to be interpreted in a 'realistic' way (to come back to vampires,
the suspect was actually sucking out snake venom a sin a Sherlock Holmes story, or merely *believed* to be a vampire), a 'Sci Fi' one (Matheson vampires) or a 'magical' one. For instance once the PC were received by a NPC who was to hire them. He wore a hood and gloves, but when overexcited by his own discourse dense hair briefly appeared between glove and sleeve, on his neck under the hood, around his eyes… as if covered with fur (think Jean Marais in 'La Belle et la Bête'). I never made clear (and, to be sure not to influence players, never decided) if he was victim of a rare pathology, of a 'Dr Jekyll &Mr Hyde' experiment turned bad or of a magical curse. He was just a touch of 'exotic color' in the background that nor had to be explained, thus each player was free to reach his (no 'her', alas!) conclusion.

Btw, as for 'authentic' vampire folklore, the 'canon' your refer to is, indeed not purely Victorian (Polidori's 'The Vampyre' was written in 1819), but a total rewriting by Western European authors of the original myth. According to reports of 18th C. Austrian Crown agent investigating 'superstitions' in the most backwaters lands ruled by Maria-Theresa (thus describing the 'original' / 'authentic' Transylvanian vampire) the living corpse never left the coffin. Only the 'spirit' escaped the grave nowadays some would talk of 'astral form'), to suck the 'life force' of those whose dreams it haunted. During the process some blood was indeed teleported (!) / translocated from the body of the victim to that of the vampire (the myth had to explain why a red fluid spurted out when a stake was pushed in the supposed vampire's corpse).
Lovecraft has something similar in 'The Shunned House' .
Not that this 'Old School' vampire, if somehow tamed and targeted at a precise victim, could be the perfect assassin; as I remember his / her 'radius of action' was the distance between the village graveyard and the house of the victim. You just have to bring the coffin (in a wagon?) withing striking distance of the intended victim…

Norman D Landings Inactive Member30 Jan 2013 11:27 a.m. PST

See, that's exactly my point… THAT'S the sort of stuff I love about the actual folklore… vampire spirits using the corpse as a physical 'base of operations' and teleporting the blood back to it!

Not only is it pretty darn cool in it's own right, but it's a great way to wrong-foot players who get their 'lore' from Hollywood.

As to my referring to 'canon' – that's not what I mean at all.
By referring to folklore, I meant precisely that sort of thing… not some sort of standard canonic 'Single Folklore Model'.

For a start, there was never 'one' archetype for either vampires or werewolves.
In fact, as in the example you cite, most 'authentic' folklore is actively counter-canon!
THAT's the good stuff!

Bat-winged Filipinos sucking blood through long hollow probosces – Bronze-footed Greek vampire witches – Finnish werewolves with hypnotic gaze and poisoned claws.

All that great stuff gets lost when you 'standardize' the types according to Hollywood.

abdul666lw Inactive Member31 Jan 2013 12:47 p.m. PST

I fully understand but, given that it's basically a matter of 'personal intellectual comfort' to choose between a 'pseudo-rationalist' and a 'magical' interpretation of the same "facts", both approaches can cover the same diversity.
For instance in the case of the 'infectious' interpretation of vampires (or werewolves, or zombies) pathogens mutate, can exchange genetic material with very different strains when sharing the same host &c… The disease being infrequent, the original virus (e.g.)could have evolved locally to "pockets" of endemic forms inducing quite different symptoms 'e.G. for zombies in the 1st post of this thread -even Hollywood offers a wide range of zombies.

And in cases requiring too many ad hoc far fetched hypotheses in the 'sci-fi' interpretation, one can always argue that the traditional descriptions are known from oral transmission. story tellers tend to exaggerate and facing mostly illiterate audiences use very striking 'visual' *images*. In WH40K one of the 'powers' of Librarians ('psionic' equivalent of sorcerers) have 'fire' or flame' in its name. Personally I don't like the idea of a 'real' fire (it would look too much like a 'fireball' spell -though one can argue that a very powerful psionic couls trigger a not-so-spontaneous human combustion ^-^); I prefer to think that persons close to the target of the attack -and the targeted human him/herself if having survived it) remember an intense burning pain (a side effect hallucination).

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