Vampires are a dangerous type of undead. Whilst humans are the most common victims of vampirism, it can infect other species as well, including hounds and even dragons. Throughout the multiverse, vampires can be created through other vampires transforming their victims, or through enchantment. 
The most defining characteristic of vampires is their hunger for the blood or lifeforce of others. Other traits of vampires can include unnatural physical strength, enhanced healing powers and the ability to fly, with the method of flight being through either natural or magical means. Many vampires are highly sensitive to sunlight and therefore only go out at night or in the shade, but this is not always the case. Regardless, the secretive and predatory nature of the creatures means that they all prefer the cover of darkness. Vampires can range from being mindless predators to sophisticated and intelligent nobles. The appearance of vampires is similarly varied, although they all have at least two elongated fangs and the more feral ones have bat-like qualities.
Sengir Vampires are said to be descendants of the legendary Baron Sengir on Dominaria and Ulgrotha. Whilst they are most common on the latter, others have been found across the multiverse. On Dominaria they were found in Aerona and in the pits of the Cabal in Otaria. Over the centuries, the Sengir bloodline has degenerated; while they were once as attractive and human-seeming as their progenitor, the Sengir vampires are now hideous, misshapen creatures with pointed ears, long claws, feral eyes, or visible red veins all over their bodies.
Krovikan Vampires stalked the streets of the plague-ridden city of Krov during the Ice Age. They were led by Garza Zol. These vampires have a pale appearance with skin like porcelain. They also have eyes colored blood red.
Mephidross Vampires are named after the Mephidross on Mirrodin. The warlord Geth kept what he believed to be the only Mephidross Vampire as his personal bodyguard until it was defeated by Glissa. Like all of the creatures on Mirrodin, Mephidross Vampires are partly metallic. It's most prominent feature is that it has fangs on his hands rather than his mouth.
With the return to Mirrodin in the Scars of Mirrodin block, it has been revealed that clans of vampires live in Mirrodin. Like the Mephidross Vampire, they have characteristic fangs on their pointer and third fingers. How Geth did not notice them when they lived in the Mephidross is unknown.
The vampires of Zendikar are native to the humid continent of Guul Draz, and differ from typical vampires in many respects. Normal Zendikar vampires have a lifespan of approximately 200 years. They feed on blood, but it does not have to be blood from a sentient race. When a vampire drains blood from a sentient creature, that creature does not become a vampire. Instead, it becomes a null, a faceless zombie that is stronger and much faster than typical zombies.
The Bloodchiefs and their families
The vampires of Zendikar are divided into five families, each presided over by a bloodchief, a powerful, immortal vampire. Each bloodchief is the progenitor of their entire family, as when a bloodchief drains blood from a sentient creature, that creature will become a vampire with the tastes and passions of of the bloodchief imprinted on them. Each family controls their own section of the vampire city of Malakir. The five vampire families are:
- Kalastria - The wealthiest and most powerful family, who refer to themselves as Highborn (Kalastria Highborn). The head of the clan is Drana.
- Nirkana - Notorius assassins who are feared by all. (Vampire Lacerator, Nirkana Cutthroat)
- Ghet - The poorest and least powerful of the families, the Ghet have recently seized holdings outside of Malakir, including the port city of Nimana, and now threaten to become as powerful as the Kalastria. The head of the clan is Kalitas.
The vampiric bloodlines that govern the Innistrad of Stensia reap the benefits of the isolation in the region. The chain of mountains of Peak Geier that domintates the province, separates the valleys from each other, making them easier to monitor and control. The suffering humans of Stensia have an irrational home loyalty, but strictly speaking, have few options, they are trapped in the narrow mountain passes of the province and attached to their customs and lives of meetings.
Thousands of years ago, before there were vampires on Innistrad, Edgar Markov was an alchemist in the land that would become Stensia. Famine was sweeping the land, and the old alchemist Edgar searched for a solution that could help the starving families feed themselves. The answer was a brutal one: to undergo a blood ritual that would cause some of the people to feed on blood. It would provide sustenance to those few, reducing demand for the failing crops, but it would also cull the overall population, reducing the number of hungry mouths to feed. Thus were vampires born on Innistrad. 
The four bloodlines
Not all vampires are created equal. Among the existing vampiric bloodlines, some are more common but prestigious whereas some are rare but less respected. There were originally twelve bloodlines, which originated long ago in a ritual that had something to do with the Markov progenitor, Edgar Markov. Three of these bloodlines have died out completely. Five others are relatively minor, having sired fewer vampires.
The four major bloodlines that remain are:
- Crovax the Cursed was once a mortal man from Urborg, but following his defection to Phyrexia he became the insane vampiric evincar of Rath. He was able to absorb the life force of his victims directly, although he also enjoyed consuming the rest of the body. Like other evincars, he was known to keep vampire hounds as pets.
- Mirri the Cursed, in an alternate reality she is the vampiric Evincar of Rath instead of Crovax.
- Garza Zol, Plague Queen was the vampiress that ruled over Krov. She allied with Heidar following the thaw, but later had him murdered by one of her assassins.
- Shauku, Endbringer was an ancient and mysterious Jamuraan vampire. She was revered by cultists calling themselves the Agents of Shauku, although it is unclear whether she was simply worshipped by them or actively led them.
- Baron Sengir is the mastermind of the Sengir clan of Vampires and the self-styled lord of Ulgrotha. One of the most intelligent and dangerous vampires, he ultimately he plans to dominate the multiverse with his undead family. He is the sire of the dwarven vampire Irini Sengir.
- Szadek, Lord of Secrets is the Parun and guildmaster of House Dimir. An ancient and powerful entity, over 10,000 years old, Szadek and his guild are widely believed to be merely a myth amongst Ravnica's populace. Szadek's hunger is for the minds of his victims, with the first thought he consumes being the memory of his attack.
- Mirko Vosk a high ranking member of House Dimir in charge both with retrieving memories as well as implanting identities and other information in the minds of others. When the Izzet League began their research into the Implicit Maze, Mirko was assigned to gather as much knowledge of the maze as possible, leading him to cross paths with Jace Beleren. Ultimately, his presence as a Guild Champion was proven redundant by Lazav's participation in the maze.
- Anowon is the scion of powerful vampire family in Malakir. He is an expert on ruins, runes, and ancient languages. He is ruthless and murderous, but has managed to keep this side of himself a secret from most of the races on Zendikar, and is thought by most to be nothing more than a renowned mage and benevolent scholar.
- The two most powerful bloodchiefs on Zendikar are Kalitas of the Ghet family, and Drana of the Kalastria family.
The most defining characteristic of vampires is their hunger for the blood or lifeforce of others. This has been represented mechanically in a number of ways within the game. The two most notable are the addition of +1/+1 counters for sending other creatures to the graveyard, and the 'bloodied' mechanic of Zendikar, where Vampires get bonuses as long as an opponent has 10 or less life.
For most of Magic's history, vampires and demons have occupied a similar position card-wise. Both were large, flying, expensive-to-cast 'iconic' black creatures that showed up as rares a few times in each set. This meant that vampire cards had to compete with demon cards for a limited amount of card slots in a set, and they often lost out the the slightly more iconic demons. Meanwhile, vampires were becoming more and more popular amongst movie-goers and readers of fantasy fiction. In order to solve the demon/vampire dilemma, and 'cash in' on the popularity of vampires, they were shifted from big iconic creature status, to the role of a characteristic race of black. In essence, vampires became smaller in size, but larger in numbers, showing up in common and uncommon slots. To achieve this, vampires were given a vampire lord in Magic 2010, followed by a heavy tribal theme in the Zendikar block, despite the fact that Zendikar was not actually a tribal-based block. This seems to have continued with the Scars of Mirrodin block, on a plane that was previously noted for having only one vampire (Mephidross Vampire).
Black Vampire Creature tokens are created by:
- Bloodline Keeper (2/2, with flying)
- Kalitas, Bloodchief of Ghet (*/*)
- Lord of Lineage (2/2, with flying)
- Sorin, Lord of Innistrad (1/1, with lifelink)
- ↑ Mark Rosewater. (September 05, 2011.) "C'mon Innistrad, Part 1", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Mark Rosewater. (February 13, 2006.) "Interview With Some Vampires", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Magic Creative Team. (Wednesday, October 21, 2009.) "A planeswalker's Guide to Zendikar: Guul Draz and Vampires", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Doug Beyer. (January 11, 2012.) "Sorin's Homecoming", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- ↑ Mark Rosewater. (Monday, October 19, 2009.) "Care for a Bite?", Daily MTG, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.