I love throwing out old tropes or rebranding them. For example, as much as I love the classic eastern european vibe or the modern synthpunk and latex reskinning of vampires I feel as if they’ve been played out. So for my hope game I tossed out ALL of that stuff, and came up with the following lore to replace it.
Kokatha (predator in goblin) the hobgoblin was the most favored of the primordial god of the wood. He was a beast who mastered the hunting sport. He was blessed by the primordial god with many gifts that made him the ultimate hunter (vampire with none of the drawbacks). He was also blessed with the ultimate prey (tarrasque).
6 yuan ti gods knew that magic flowed in the hobgoblin’s blood so they attempted to steal Kokatha’s power by drinking it. However, Kokatha retained mastery of his own blood and bestowed a curse upon the 6 yuan ti and everything his blood touches. He found the snakes to be unwanted guests, so now they had to be invited in. He hated the sight of their treacherous faces so he banished them into darkness. He wanted them to remain on their little islands forever, so he made running water harm them.
One winter his prey was captured by a devil and he went to sleep waiting to be awoken if his prey ever returned. The curse he put on the vampires still remains. Only by killing the great hunter or by convincing him to lift the curse will they ever be free of it.
My players will interact with these ancient yuan ti vampires that summon snakes and drakes instead of bats and wolves.
I hope it inspires you to use a monster in a less tropie way. Thanks for reading 🙂