Blood magic is a theme that has been repeated in multiple incarnations throughout both the history of magical practice and in fiction. Sacrifices of blood allowed the Sun to shine upon the Mexica. Warriors through the ages have bound themselves to one another in blood oaths. Blood protected the ancient Hebrews from the Angel of Death and some Christian sects believe consecrated wine truly is the blood of the Messiah. Today we see blood magic used in so many areas that it would probably be simpler to direct you to the Blood Magic TVTropes page.
However, I have specifically been asked for the post to create a Blood Mage that “does not suck.” In the words of my commissioner, Wizards are Nerds, Sorcerers are Rich Kids, Warlocks just yell “Do you know who my dad is?!” The Blood Aspirant is me, you, your neighbor, the Blood Aspirant sleeps in the beating heart of us all just waiting to Kool-aid Man its way out of our chest.
I will note that this started out more general in the creation process and soon ramped into something heavily inspired by Aztec and other Mesoamerican concepts.
Blood Spells– As mentioned before, your magic doesn’t come from research or imagination or the teachings of some arcane master, it comes directly from your blood. Gain 2 new Blood Spells at random each template.
Bloodletting– You can augment your magic power by investing the blood of others. Track the highest HD creature you’ve damaged each day. You collect their blood on and strip of paper. By burning the paper, you may augment (in either direction) the intensity of your Blood Magic by the HD amount once during that 24 hour period. Creatures that are exceptionally magical (and have blood) may double the effect.
Nourishing Blood– All blood is infused with nourishing power. You may deal damage with your Obsidian dagger as normal and heal another target within reach for the amount of damage done. You may do this [template] times a day. You may double the power of healing if you deal damage to yourself. Small plants and grasses spring up where your blood touches the earth.
Hemophilia– You bleed exceptionally easily, any attack against you that would draw blood deals an additional [template] damage to you. However you have a more ready and powerful connection to Blood. When you roll to use Blood Magic, you may choose to have a [template] bonus in either direction.
Thrombophilia– You clot exceptionally easily, any attack against you that would draw blood deals [template] less damage. Your Blood, however, flows slow and thick, overtaxing your heart. When you fail a Blood Magic Roll you have a cumulative 1-in-20 chance of having a heart attack and immediately drop to 0 HP.
Blood Brother– You and another willing creature may become “Blood Brothers.” This gives you access to their blood as through it was yours and may cast through them, regardless of distance, with Blood Magic as though they were you. You are instantly aware if your Blood Brother has been hurt and if they have perished. You may only have one Blood Brother at a time.
Rest is Good for the Blood– As long as you have a heat source available, you may heal on a short or long rest as though you haven eaten. This does not hold off the effects of starvation.
Heart of the Sun– Every 52 years, a beating heart must be ripped from a human body and sacrificed to allow the sun to rise again. Inside of every human being there is an organ with enough power to keep the Sun alive for 52 years. By carving out the heart of a living intelligent sacrifice you may use this to fuel your magic. For every HD of the Sacrifice, you have an HD-in-20 chance of calling on the full extent of this power. If the sacrifice is human, double the HD. If the sacrifice is willing, double the HD. If you sacrifice yourself, the effect is assured and you survive just long enough to see the final results of the effect. Failure, however, means that your sacrifice was inadequate and it attracts the attention of Tzitzimitl with HD equal to the difference between your roll and success.
A note: Many of these spells only affect creatures with blood. Most undead will be unaffected, though a vampire that has recently fed might be. Creatures with especially magical blood (like dragons) might be affected more or less powerfully by these spells.
Whisper/Speak/Scream with Blood
R:0 T: Self D: [Intensity] Rounds
You can speak with the blood of all living things. Blood is the seat of the Animal Soul, and it knows things about sex and violence, instinct and want. If your Intensity is less than 5 you whisper to your own Blood, it might know things you’ve missed. If your Intensity is less than 10 you may speak with the blood of other living things or blood spilt within 24 hours. If your Intensity is greater than 10, you shout to the blood of everyone within hearing. Everyone, including yourself, must Save vs. Con (or Paralysis or whatever). On failure, targets are stunned for one round as their blood strains and yells into your brain. You get answers like shouting into a busy crowd.
R: [Intensity]*5’ Cone T: [Intensity] HD worth of Creatures D: Immediate/Immediate/[Intensity]/2 Rounds
You call out to rouse or calm blood. If Intensity is 5 or below, you soothe the blood of your targets. Anyone under an effect that is emotion based (rage, fear, morale checks etc.) have the effect immediately ended or receive a reroll to resist, whichever is appropriate and ordinary emotions are dulled. If Intensity is 10 or below, you awaken the blood of your targets. Anyone under an effect that is emotion based has all effects of that emotion doubled and ordinary emotions become significantly more pronounced. If Intensity is above 10, the targets’ blood boils. All targets are affected as a Barbarian’s rage and takes 1d6 damage per round from their blood literally boiling inside them.
R: Touch T: 1 Creature D: [Intensity] Minutes/Rounds/Rounds
You command blood to serve you. If Intensity is 5 or below, Deal damage with your Obsidian dagger to a target ( you may target yourself), a Blood Elemental (stats as Water elemental) of HD equal to half the damage dealt (minimum 1) is summoned under your control for the duration. If Intensity is above 5, you instead charm the blood of a target. The target must save or their body acts Charmed, though they remain conscious throughout. If Intensity is above 10, you subsume the target’s mind to their blood. The target Saves or goes on an animalistic rampage in an attempt to free as much blood as possible, not distinguishing between friend or foe.
R: 30’ T: 1 Creature D: Permanent/[Intensity]/2 Rounds/[Intensity] Rounds
You can create long vein-like ropes from blood. At Intensity 5 or lower, you point at a target in range and deal [Intensity] Damage and create a bloody rope of [Intensity]*10’ in length. At 10 or Lower you instead create a snake of [Intensity] length that immediately constricts the target (treat as a Boa Constrictor.) Above 10 Intensity, you create a flying flaming feathered serpent called a Xiuhcoatl. The Xiuhcoatl holds no loyalty to you, but will strike at anything within range while active.
R: Centered on Caster T: [Damage]*10’ radius circleD: [Intensity]Rounds/Rounds/Instant
You massively increase your own blood supply for a moment and then release it. Damage yourself with your Obsidian dagger to release the blood. At Intensity 5 or lower, you release a mist of blood that limits vision in the area to 10’ and covers everything in red. At Intensity 10 or lower, you create a thick rain of blood that slicks the ground requiring a dex check to not slip. Above 10, you release a powerful wave that crashes in a circle around you. Targets must save vs. Paralysis or be knocked prone and stuck to the ground as the blood rapidly clots into a huge scab. Targets can hack away the clot (6hp), succeed a strength check, or wash it away with water to become unstuck.
R: Touch T: 1 Creature D: Instant/[Intensity] Rounds/1 Rounds
You can manipulate the flow of blood and the organs that work them. At 5 Intensity or below, you may bolster a target’s marrow vastly increasing their blood supply. This heals the target by [Intensity] but flushes their skin a deep red. Affecting a target with this effect more than once a day has a cumulative 1-in-6 chance of causing the target’s skin to hemorrhage violently and lose everything they’d been healed for that day. At 10 Intensity or below, you bolster your target’s liver giving them [Intensity] bonus to checks against poisons and intoxicants. Above 10 Intensity, you bolster a targer’s heart. Affecting a target more than once a day with this affects them with jaundice. For one round they may add [Intensity] to a single physical check, double their speed, or take twice as many actions. Everytime a target’s heart is bolstered, they gain a slot of exhaustion. If they have no slots left to fill, they must save vs. Death or be affected with cardiac arrest.
R: Touch T: 1 Creature D: [Intensity] Minutes/Minutes/Rounds
You are able to connect to another creature through shared blood. You must touch another creature with your own blood for this to function. At Intensity 5 or less, you are able to link to another creature (ally or enemy) and use their physical stats for the duration. OR you may have the target Save and use your physical stats for the duration. At Intensity 10 or less, you are able to experience the sensations of another creature (sight, smell, touch etc.) however if that creature takes damage, you take half and the connection is lost. Above Intensity 10, you must roll above the target’s remaining HP. If you succeed, you absorb a portion of the target’s identity, gaining snippets of their memories/knowledge and one of their abilities (within reason) for the duration.
R: [Intensity]*10 Feet/Yards/Miles T: 2 Living Creatures of similar type D: Instant
You are capable of walking through the eternal stream of blood that connects all living things. You literally dive into the bloodstream of one creature and exit from another. At 5 or below Intensity, you can move a max of 50’ between two like creatures (two humans, two elves, two goblins etc.) While unnerving this has no other effect on the targets. At 10 or below intensity, you move up to 300 feet between two like creatures (2 warm blooded humanoids, 2 cold blooded reptiles). This is less pleasant and deals [Intensity]/2 damage to you and both targets. Above 10 Intensity, you move in terms of miles between two creatures (2 mammals, 2 bipeds.) This is extremely unpleasant for all involved, both targets and yourself Save vs. Death. Failure results in [Intensity]*2 damage and blood spray like from a japanese samurai flick. If both targets succeed but you fail, you are stuck as blood within the first target until you are bled out.
Tezcatlipoca- Swarm of Jaguars
R: [HD] Miles T: 1 Target Creature D: 24 Hours
A target creature that you have personally drawn the blood of is cursed with relentless assaults from jaguars. Over the course of 24 hours, Jaguars will pounce from any nearby shadow upon the target. Any time the Jaguar is killed, another will immediately spawn. Every hour an additional Jaguar will spawn until there is 23 Jaguars active at once. The target may avoid this by being in a space with absolutely no shadow. After 24 hours are up, the Jaguars all vanish. Jaguars disperse into shadow-stuff when killed, leaving no remains.
Xipe-Totec- Mantled Rebirth
R: Touch T: 1 Target Creature D: 8 Hours
The blood of your sacrificed victim is drained into a prepared tub or pit. The victim’s skin is then flayed and placed around the remains of the creature/target you wish to bring back to life. Over an 8 hour period the dead creature/target fuses with the flayed skin. At the end of the duration, the target makes a System Shock (or Con or whatever is appropriate) check. On success they come back to life with all their mental stats and former class skills, but with the physical stats and appearance of the sacrificed victim. If the roll fails or the ritual is interrupted in any way, the fusion is imperfect and the target comes back with 2d4 Mutations.
Quetzalcoatl- Atavistic Wind
R: 0 T: [HD]*10’ wide, [HD]*20’ High D: [HD] Rounds
A powerful transformative wind blows rises from the victim’s dying breath. A tornado centered on the victim picks up anything within the area of effect that fails a dex save. Anyone affected by the tornado must save vs. magic or be regressed into an earlier evolutionary stage. Humans become chimps, dwarves become big moles, orcs become boars, elves into chitinous egg-laying deer and so on. When the duration is over, the tornado drops all of its occupants for appropriate falling damage.
Huitzilopochtli- Summon Sun
R: 0 T: HD*10’ Sphere D: 0
The sacrificial victim must be killed with a flaming arrow as part of the sacrifice for this effect to work. The victim immolates in a massive fireball and deals [HD]d6 Fire damage to everything within range. This deals double damage against undead or creatures considered to be “of the night.”
|Tzitzimitl by Hunterkiller
Tzitzimitl (Star Demon)
Appearance: A 5-20’ tall dimly glowing skeleton wearing a pale headdress and dressed in blood drenched jade armor.
Wants: To devour the Sun
Armour: Leather 1-3HD, Chain 4-6HD, Plate 7-10HD, Plate+Shield 11+ HD
Move: Teleport within Line of Sight
Damage: Claw 1d6, Claw/Claw 1d6/1d6, Star Macuahuitl 2d6+6
Star-Strike: When a Tzitzimitl is summoned, they plummet from the sky and land with explosive force. Everything within 60’ of their landing zone takes [HD]*2 fire damage and must Save vs. Fear.
Consume– A Tzitzimitl of 4+ HD rolling max damage on both claw attacks attempt to consume their target whole. Save vs. Death, on failure the target is destroyed and the Tzitimitl heals for an amount equal to the target’s max HP.
Demi-Goddess– A Tzitzimitl of 7+ HD casts spells appropriate for a lich of similar HD.
Star Macuahuitl– A Tzitzimitl of 10+ HD wields a Star Macuahuitl, essentially a manual chainsaw made of dense star-stuff. Ignores non-magic armor.
Light Envy– A Tzitzimitl will attack whomever is carrying the brightest light source first.
Sunlight Vulnerability– A Tzitzimitl takes 1d6 damage every round spent under direct sunlight.
The Tzitzimitl are the goddesses behind the Stars and are greatly envious of the Sun and the Earth. The blood sacrifices made to them are meager at best and so they wish to destroy the Sun and consume all of humanity to sate their hunger.
Appearance: A large flaming serpent with turquoise feathers
Wants: Set Things On Fire
Move: Fly 1.5 Normal
Damage: Bite 1d6+1 Fire
Constrict– Save vs. Paralysis (or Dex), squeezes for 1d6+1 Fire damage each round. Save to escape each round.
Fiery Aura– Anything in melee range of a Xiuhcoatl is burned for 1 damage each round. Flammable objects catch fire after 3 rounds of exposure. Paper and similar objects catch after only 1 round.
What it says on the box, it is a flying flaming feather serpent. Seen as both the spirit form and primary weapon of the Sun, Huitzilopochtli.