Welcome to Librarium Online!
Im a new 40K player but i think i am going to field a small army of counts as well.
I just want some suggestions to a small army of counts (in other words good choices to start with)
Vampire for sure. Grave guard are seen in almost every list and Varghulfs are popular too. What size army were you thinking of starting with?
not sure how the points are in Fantasy but maybe about 500? I think just about everything you mentioned is like elites and Hero kina things though. what about some troops?
Choose either skeletons or ghouls for that small of a group
You can always expand later but at 500 points you really have enough for your Vamp Hero and 2 blocks of infantry, maybe 3 if you include zombies.
Choose 2 groups of ghouls or 2 groups of skeletons.
Ghouls are great with more attacks and toughness 4
and Skeletons offer variety w/ Hand weapon/shield or Great Weapon combos + the ability to field a standard, even a magic one.
Choose one or the other for now, you can always expand later.
A few days ago I played some games that were 500 points and I fielded a vampire(dark acolyte, summon ghouls, book of arkhan), 20 zombies, 20 ghouls, and 3 fell bats. In the first turn I summoned another unit of zombies and increased their size to about 20. I had one unit of zombies to protect my vampire and the other unit I summoned as close to my opponent as I could and then used book of arkhan to charge them. The fell bats I used to fly around the enemy to attack from behind. This listed worked fro me and I won three games that day.
I will see how much that list will cost me (not trying to copy) just 'cause it seems fairly simple
An easy way to get a lot of skeletons and zombies is to buy a box, some bases, and use the leftover bits. This way you can get more zombies very easy and it makes your zombies look like they are crawling out of the ground.