I've always been fascinated by the idea of immortal undead super-predators, and this fascination has pervaded human imagination for a long time. This interest has caused people to attribute all sorts of fantastical traits and abilities to these creatures. I've been wondering, not only how some of these characteristics would work in a real-world setting, but also how extensive they'd be. For example, what exactly gives vampires their tremendous strength? Exactly how potent would that be? Or exactly how devastating would the power of the sun be? Why? Here's the list of traits I'd like discussed:
- Extraordinary strength, speed
- Heightened senses
- Healing factor
- Limited invulnerability
- Limited mind control
- Enhanced intuition
- Aversion to daylight
- Inability to cross running-water or enter residences uninvited
- Wooden stakes killing (Paralyzing in some stories) vampires
Finally, what I believe to be the most important, viral reproduction. By reproducing via blood transfusion, we see a method of reproduction that takes little time or energy. This allows vampires to grow their population exponentially. One vampire becomes two, becomes four, becomes eight etc. the bottleneck always being the population becoming too large to remain hidden or until they outnumber their prey. What possible explanation could there be for their numbers to remain at survivable levels?
One avenue I've always been curious about, what would the psychology of this species look like? They're derived from humans, yet they are forced by their own biology to feed off of them to fuel themselves. Their lifespans are also longer by an order of magnitude. How would that effect someone over time? Also, how could their brains adapt to hold all those memories? Would they be solitary or social predators? I think I'll stop the tirade there. This is to help me create parameters for a race of vampires, but I have no knowledge of where to begin, beyond Hollywood and Stoker. Any insights would be greatly appreciated!