In campaign mode, they are recruited via the Bloodlines mechanic. They provide access to Sylvanian Crossbowmen and Sylvanian Handgunners, the only ranged units available to the Vampire Counts. A Lord of the Wizard type, they are described as being of the "Puppet Master" focus.
Out of all the Vampires that have ever been known to man, the cursed bloodline of the von Carsteins is by-far the most legendary. Handsome, arrogant, charismatic, prideful and ambitious, the von Carsteins are the true aristocracy of the night. It is said that the history of the von Carstein family can be traced back to the time of Sigmar Heldenhammer and the founding of the Empire. Indeed, for in a way, there is some truth to this, for it was Vlad von Carstein himself that was present during that ancient time, giving Sigmar vital instructions on how to defeat Nagash before the gates of Altdorf itself.
The Von Carstein Bloodline lord is identical to the generic Vampire Lord, save for a few unique skills.
- The Lord is especially good at handling the unique Sylvanian human troops, having the option to pick he Sylvanian Marksmen skill which grants +10% to both Range and Missile Strength to Sylvanian Crossbowmen an Sylvanian Handgunners.
- Once he gets to level 10, he lord can learn the Benevolent Overlord, which grants him the passive Guardian ability, as well as the Cattle Herder skill, which unlocks another unit of Sylvanan Crossbowmen (normally capped to a single unit upon unlocking the first Von Carstein Blooline)
- Upon reaching level 10, likewise, a unique new tree opens up:
- Fell Nest (-50% construction cost -1 turn construction time for the Forest chain buildings, as well as -100% Upkeep for Fell Bats).
- Mist Form (+10% Speed for himself, 10% Physical and 10% Missile Resistance for Dire Wolves)
- Brooding Horrors (-40% Upkeep for Vargheists, Recruit rank +2 for Fell Bats and Vargheists, -1 recruitment turn for Vargheists)
- Storm of the Night - a good bound vortex to be used against enemy air
- To depict the Von Carstein's beast preferences, instead of the full Lore of Vampires the Von Carstein Lords get access in part to the Lore of Beasts. They get Flock of Doom in place of Gaze of Nagash, as well as the Transformation of Kadon in place of the Curse of Years, getting two Varghulf summons.