HMPA Condition in Into the Deadlands | World Anvil
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Inspired By World Anvil Summer Camp 2021: "A Medical Condition Which is Feared By Some"

The hominum maledictum pallidi affliction (HMPA), is an affliction that affects humanoids. Without treatment, the average survival time after infection with HMPA is 2 to 4 days. In most cases, HMPA occurs by a transfer of blood or sexually transmission   Those afflicted with HMPA become mindless undead killing machines. They are known commonly as Ghouls. They are only driven by an insatiable hunger for humanoid flesh.   There is a small percentage who keep their intelligence after being infected. The exact reasons are still unknown. These ghouls are also known as Ghasts. For some reason, they do not have the insatiable hunger that ghouls do, but are still driven to eat humanoid flesh.

Transmission & Vectors

The affliction is know to be transferred by:
  • The bite of a Vampire
  • A blood pact with a Vampire or Ghast
  • Sexual transmission with a Vampire or Ghast


The affliction begins slowly with symptoms gradually increasing in order of severity. Lasting in 3 stages. Most do not find out they are infected until it is too late.   The first stage looks like the common cold to most. Lasting between 2 to 3 days. Symptoms of this stage include: fever, fatigue, muscle aches, and nausea.   The next stage looks like intoxication. This lasts for 4 hours. Symptoms of this stage include: vomiting, dizziness, blackout spells, aggression, slurred speech, and cognitive impairment.   The last stage only lasts about 2 hours. The only symptom of this stage is extreme hunger followed by the afflicted turning into a Ghoul or Ghast.


The symptoms of HMPA is treated with common medicines to reduce their severity. However only high level magic can cure the afflicted. Once one has turned into a Ghoul or Ghast the only cure is death.


The origin of this affliction is not known. Many hypothesis currently exist ranging from curses place on a humanoid by a powerful spirit to biological origins   The Blood Assault, the worst tragic battle in Maska's history was caused by this affliction. It was an event Lasting 3 years beginning in the year 2612. This event nearly wiped out most of the nations of Regna. A magic user and Ghast by the name of Wiorow the Calamity caused this event. He initiated a spell that allowed him to control mosquitoes. This allowed him to transfer his blood into many victims via the mosquitoes. Turning most into ghouls under his command.   It is rumored that one of the members of The Ancient Void Shadow Council is a ghast.

Cultural Reception

Most people fear another Blood Assault. Due to this people who are suspected of having the affliction are often hunted and purged. Often without trial or evidence. An estimated 25000+ people have been executed for the suspicion of having it.   Most nations have a Ghoul-hunting law on the books. Often these laws are used to intimidate political opponents.

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