Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Mutants In The News — We Need Casper Van Dien Now More Than Ever Edition

I've blogged about invasive predatory constrictors before, and here's the newest terrifying findings:  the serpents are devouring all the mammals in The Everglades.

(The article went with that ubiquitous snake-eating-a-gator pic.  This is better.)

Burmese pythons, originally kept as pets, are the likely cause of a severe mammal decline in Florida's Everglades.

Researchers found a strong link between the spread of pythons and drops in recorded sightings of raccoons, rabbits, bobcats, and other species...they report that observations of several mammal species have declined by 90% or more.

And when the snakes run out of furry, four-legged food, there's only one "other species" that will satiate them.  I think we all know what to expect....

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

"L" is for "Lysid"

Lysid  ("Pillbud")

No. Enc.:  1d6 (2d8)
Alignment:  Lawful
Movement:  75' (25') 
Armor Class:  4
Hit Dice:  8+2
Attacks:  5 or 2 (4 claws, 1 bite, or 2 weapons)
Damage:  1d6 / 1d6 / 1d6 / 1d6 / 1d4, or by 2 weapons + 3d6
Save:  L8
Morale:  10
Hoard Class:  VII, XIV
XP:  4,220

The Lysids are a race of 6' tall, be-carapaced isopoids that favor dark, damp environs, like lush forests, dank caves, and Ancient ruins. 

Despite their prefered habitats, Lysids are a gregarious and outgoing people, and relish contact with other sentients.  They can be menaces to themselves and others, though, as their general dimwittedness and clumsiness are amplified by their rowdiness and love of bingeing.  Luckily for the Lysids, their thick exoskeletons provide a 75% reduction against damage from conventional melee weapons, firearms, and explosives.

Lysids make excellent bodyguards and laborers, and can often be persuaded to take compensation in the forms of homemade liquors and/or Ancient erotica.

Mutations:  Atrophied Cerebellum [D], Enhanced Vision (Night Vision), Increased Physical Attribute (Strength), Natural Armor (Extreme), Temperature Control (Cold)

Monday, January 23, 2012

"V" is for "Vibreetle"


No. Enc.:  1d4 (1d6)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:  90' (30')
Armor Class:  3
Hit Dice:  7
Attacks:  1 (bite)
Damage:  1d10
Save:  L4
Morale:  10
Hoard Class:  VI
XP:  1,490

Vibreetles are flightless insects the size of Ancient sport utility vehicles.  Ravenous carnivores, they relentlessly hunt prey through olfactory glands in their feet.

Vibreetles rub their wings together to generate destructive sonic waves that inflict 4d6 damage to every target within a 50' radius.  These attacks are usable every other round, and shatter glass and ice, and liquefy flesh and bone.  Vibreetles also use their abilities to disorient and stun targets.

While unconfirmed, rumors persist that vibreetles can mimic human speech.

Mutations:  Energy Ray (Sonic) (Modified), Increased Sense (Smell), Shriek (Greater)

Sunday, January 22, 2012

"M" is for "Monkit"


No. Enc.:  1d6 (3d6)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:  150' (50') 
Armor Class:  4
Hit Dice:  1+1
Attacks:  3 (2 claws, 1 bite)
Damage:  1d2 / 1d2 / 1d4
Save:  L1
Morale:  7
Hoard Class:  III
XP:  27

Monkits are 2' tall felines with primate-like builds and the corresponding agility.  They dwell in forests, jungles, and ruined cities; essentially, anywhere they can easily brachiate to avoid the ground entirely.

Arboreal monkits often live in symbiotically mutualistic relationships with otherwise deadly mutant plants (such as flame plants [see p. 72 of the Mutant Future Core Rules], morningstar plants [p. 85], skinner trees [p. 95], kablooms, and assorted carnivorous growths).  The monkits keep the plants free of parasites and distribute seeds through their droppings, and in turn gain shelter and protection.  Some monkits will even feign injury to better lure predators to their "host abodes".

There is a thriving trade for monkits as pets, but they don't domesticate easily.

Mutations:  Enhanced Vision (Night Vision), Simian Deformity [D]


Saturday, January 21, 2012

"S" is for "Skoral"


No. Enc.:  0 (1d10)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:  0' (0')
         —Fly:  30' (10')
Armor Class:  9
Hit Dice:  Varies
Attacks:  See Below
Damage:  See Below
Save:  Varies
Morale:  12
Hoard Class:  None
XP:  Varies

Skorals are levitating colonies of bioluminescent, hard-shelled microorganisms that float languidly across the skies of the Mutant Future.  They vary in size range in size from 20' long (13 HD) to over 50' long (20 HD) to several miles long (35+ HD).

Skorals are rarely a danger to ground-based targets, as they soar at high altitudes to feed on insects, birds, and assorted flying mutants.  Any animal that bumps into a "sky reef" is either electrocuted or pierced with poisonous barbed tentacles (1d6 damage, Class 15 poison).  Skorals can also discharge clouds of pheromones to mesmerize prey that would otherwise avoid them.

Attacking skorals from the ground is foolhardy, as it will  cause the colonies to float down and attack, lashing out with hundreds of whip-like tentacles.  And killing a skoral reef is even worse, as a dead mass of large enough size can crush an entire city.

Skoral clusters are completely immune to all Mental Attacks.  Smaller specimens are favored prey item of quakewhales (who build up a resistance to skoral toxin as they age).

Mutations:  Electric Charge Generation, Flight, Fragrance Development, Injected Poison Sap, Natural Vegetal Weapons, Prehensile Tendrils (Constrictive)

Thursday, January 19, 2012

"K" is for "Kweird"


No. Enc.:  0 (1d6)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:    240' (80')
Armor Class:  6
Hit Dice:  5
Attacks:  1 (peck or kick)
Damage:  1d10 or 1d6
Save:  L3
Morale:  7
Hoard Class:  None
XP:  500

Kweirds are 6' tall, flightless avians with stocky bodies atop powerful legs.  Strong and hearty, they can carry up to 450 lbs while moving at full speed, and up to 900 lbs at half movement.

Kweirds usually flee from fights, but they Charge with their pointed beaks for double damage when cornered, or commanded by a rider.  And anyone successfully struck by a kick attack must make an Ability Check Versus DEX or take an additional 1d6 damage from being sent flying 15' away and rendered prone for 1d2 rounds.

Ranchers often employ kweird-proficient "birdboys" to wrangle their livestock.  Kweirds also figure heavily into Mutant Future rodeos and "Wild West"-themed celebrations.

Mutations:  Gigantism, Mind Reflection

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

"C" is for "Chlorokill"


No. Enc.:  0 (2d6)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:  90' (30') 
Armor Class:  7
Hit Dice:  4+1
Attacks:  1 (bite)
Damage:  1d8+4
Save:  L4
Morale:  11
Hoard Class:  VI
XP:  440

Chlorokills, man-sized plants with broad blooms and eye-covered stems, cluster in open prairies, thick jungles, and fetid swamps.  Like most flora in the Mutant Future, they come in all manner of garish colors.

Chlorokills are both ambush predators (Surprising on a roll of 1-4 on 1d6) and active pack hunters.  Their blossoms conceal gaping maws filled with razored fangs, and they doggedly pursue prey via keen visual and olfactory senses.  They look quite comical scuttling after food on their dainty root-claws, but any amusement is short-lived once they tear into their victims.

Rumors persist that certain green-thumbed slavers and raiders train chlorokills as guards and hunting companions.

Mutations:  Carnivore, Free Movement, Full Senses

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Mutants In The News — Contagion Edition

Wired reported this last week, but I wanted further confirmation before posting...

...and now the BBC has chimed in.

For the first time, docs in India are reporting a strain of tuberculosis completely resistant to antibiotics.

Not "partially resistant", not "multi-drug resistant"...but "totally drug resistant" and "incurable".


"C" is for "Cloneworm"


No. Enc.:  1d4 (1d4)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:  30' (10') 
Armor Class:  8
Hit Dice:  8
Attacks:  1 (bite)
Damage:  2d6 + poison
Save:  L6
Morale:  10
Hoard Class:  VII, VIII
XP:  2,560

Amongst the most dreaded beasts in the Mutant Future, cloneworms are repugnant, 10' long nematodes with slimy, semi-transparent bodies as thick as tree trunks.  They lurk on the fringes of civilization, and congregate in sewers, watering holes, grave sites, and Ancient caches.

A cloneworm's prefered prey is a sleeping Pure Human or Mutant Human, and their ferocious bite injects a narcotic Class 11 neurotoxin.  The cloneworm then distends its dripping jaws and swallows the paralyzed victim whole, slowly ingesting 1' of body length per round; when fully consumed, the swallowed victim suffers an automatic 2d8 damage per round until death.  The satiated, bloated cloneworm then lies lethargically for 1d6 Turns...

...until it excretes a nude, fully formed and functional duplicate of the original victim that is alike in every way...

...except for a personality shift to Chaotic Alignment.  (And previously-Chaotic individuals thusly replicated become even more evil in temperament.)  This doppleganger awakens scheming with ill intent, and acts with particular malevolence towards former friends and loved ones.

Cloneworms can't copy Mutant Animals, Mutant Plants, or Androids; they simply digest those prey items at the same damage rate above.  And any carrion they devour is instantly absorbed.

Just a few cloneworms can ultimately be responsible for the total destruction of entire communities, as their demented "byproducts" run amok.

Mutations:  Reflective Epidermis (Heat, Lasers/Light), Toxic Weapon (Venom)

Monday, January 16, 2012

"H" is for "Hermite"


No. Enc.:  1d6 (3d6)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:  60' (20') 
Armor Class:  2
Hit Dice:  7
Attacks:  2 or 1 (2 claws, or 1 weapon)
Damage:  1d6 / 1d6, or by weapon
Save:  L7
Morale:  8
Hoard Class:  XX
XP:  1,840

Hermites are a race of 4' tall, terrestrial crustaceoids with conical shells that make their total heights between 6'-9'.  A shy, reserved, and deeply spiritual people, they avoid strangers, and do most of their trading via proxies.

Hermites are far more agile than they appear, and gain +2 to all martial Attack Rolls.

They also possess the bizarre ability to transform solid metal into an aqueous state with a touch.  This works against metallic weapons, armor/shielding, and objects of 50 lbs or less.  (Interestingly, copper is unaffected.)  Hermites utilize the resulting liquids in highly alcoholic ales renowned—and coveted—throughout the Mutant Future.

Mutations:  Natural Armor (Extreme) (x2), Unique Mutation ("Aqua-Touch")

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Mutants In The News — Spider-Goat Edition

I think the world of the Mutant Future becomes EVEN MORE TERRIFYING if all the spider-goats that infest it have names like Freckles, Pudding, and Sweetie.

"The trouble is, you can't farm spiders...They're very cannibalistic."

Don't I know it, brother.

(The article also references computer-made lifeforms and cancer-assassin cells.)

Friday, January 13, 2012

"A" is for "Arbird"

Arbird  ("Treebeak")

No. Enc.:  0 (1d4)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:  120' (40') 
Armor Class:  5
Hit Dice:  10
Attacks:  1 (bite or stomp)
Damage:  2d6 or 4d6
Save:  L5
Morale:  9
Hoard Class:  None
XP:  2,400

Arbirds are towering, 20'-30' tall, flightless avians that dwell in dense forests and jungles. 

Possessing leaf-like feathers, legs covered with bark-like scales (and lichens and moss, too), and the ability to gradually shift their coloration to match the vibrant and freakish flora of their environs, arbirds are deadly ambush predators.  They stand immobile for days on end, and wait for prey to wander between their legs...and then strike, Surprising on a 1-5 on 1d6, and Swallowing targets whole on an Attack Roll of 18-20.  Anything Swallowed suffers the initial bite damage, and an additional 1d12 damage per round until digested.  Arbirds are strict carnivores, and only attack Mutant Plants in self defense.

Arbirds birth live young, and the newborn "copselings" can stand on their own immediately.

Mutations:  None

Thursday, January 12, 2012

"B" is for "Buwoh"


No. Enc.:  1d4 (1d4)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:  15' (5')
         —Fly:  150' (50')
Armor Class:  5
Hit Dice:  3
Attacks:  3 (2 claws, 1 bite)
Damage:  1d4 / 1d4 / 1d3
Save:  L2
Morale:  10
Hoard Class:  IV
XP:  355

Buwohs are foot-tall, nocturnal avians found in all but the hottest environs.  They are quite territorial, and hostile to intruders (particularly if encountered nesting in Ancient ruins).

A buwoh's "second brain" is housed in the crystalline growths that jut from its forehead.  These crystals can be extracted from a dead specimen and implanted—and in the Mutant Future, that usually translates into "pounded into the skull with a mallet"—into any other living being of larger size.  The transplant subject suffers 8d6 damage from the ordeal, but if it survives, gains the buwoh's Mental Mutations and a permanent +1d4 to CHA.

Buwohs have gills, and often trundle into fresh water to scavenge for crustaceans and worms.  Considering their hollow bones, how they manage to stay on the bottom is unknown.

Mutations:  Aberrant Form (Gills), Dual Cerebellum (+1 extra Mental Mutation), Increased Sense (Vision), Mind Thrust

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

"H" is for "Haulbot"


Hit Dice:  30
Frame:  Armature
Locomotion:  Treads
Manipulators:  None
Armor:  Duralloy Armor (AC 3)
Sensors:  Class II
Mental Programming:  Programming
Accessories:  Robolink
Weaponry:  None
XP:  5,250

Haulbots are the size and shape of Ancient earthmovers, and in times past, they carried the ores and minerals unearthed by mining bots (see p. 131 of the Mutant Future Core Rules) and borer blimps.

A haulbot's sensors prevent it from accidentally running over a human, animal, or other robot...but Mutant Plants, Androids, and creatures that lack heat signatures will be crushed indiscriminately, taking 4d10 damage.  (Androids weren't widely used during the haulbots' heyday, and consequently aren't factored into the robots' programming.)  The units are slow and cumbersome, though, and anyone in their path can make an Ability Check Versus DEX with a -4 bonus applied to the roll to avoid being hit.

In the Mutant Future, functional haulbots are often modified for use as troop- and slave-transports.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

"P" is for "Pigmeez"


No. Enc.:  2d8 (7d6)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:  60' (20') 
Armor Class:  2
Hit Dice:  2
Attacks:  1 (bite or weapon)
Damage:  1d4-2, or by weapon -2
Save:  L2
Morale:  8
Hoard Class:  VI
XP:  74

Pigmeez (both singular and plural) are a race of 18" tall, albino porcines that make their lairs in Ancient ruins, cavern complexes, and subterranean tunnel systems. 

Severely hampered by their tiny stature, clusters of Pigmeez latch, remora-like, onto larger beasts and humanoids and ride-slash-command them via Parasitic Control.  They aren't mean-spirited or cruel when dominating others, and view it as a pragmatic necessity for survival.  Encounters with Pigmeez in the wild always involve an additional 1d2 random creatures (per the Encounter Tables on p. 104-105 of the Mutant Future Core Rules, or entries in this blog) that do the bidding of their hosts; that number climbs to 1d6 when encountered in their lairs.

All Pigmeez have synesthesia, and can hear colors, taste numbers, and smell music.

Mutations:  Albinism [D], Dwarfism, Enhanced Vision (Night Vision), Metaconcert, Parasitic Control, Unique Sense ("Synesthesia")

Friday, January 6, 2012

"V" is for "Voidswimmer"

Voidswimmer  ("Phasefin")

No. Enc.:  2d6 (2d6)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:  120' (40')
    —Flight:  120' (40')
     —Swim:  120' (40')
Armor Class:  See Below
Hit Dice:  2
Attacks:  1 (bite)
Damage:  1d6
Save:  L5
Morale:  11
Hoard Class:  None

Voidswimmers are freakish, 3' long fish that move unimpeded through solid matter, air, and water, with no loss of momentum for shifting mediums.  They are almost always "out of phase" with reality, and cannot be struck or damaged by any physical means; only Mental Mutations work against them while desolidified.

The creatures must become corporeal to feed.  They make hit-and-run attacks, phasing around—and into—their prey to take quick bites before shifting again.  A victim has only a 20% chance each round of being fast enough to physically retaliate a voidswimmer...but this number is upped by 10% for each positive Dexterity-based Missile Attack Modifier possessed by the target.  (Conversely, this number is lowered by 5% for each negative Modifier.)   And even if victims are fast enough, they still must strike against an effective Armor Class of 3.

Some sages hypothesize that voidswimmers are not of this world, and came to the Mutant Future through Ancient dimensional-travel experimentation.

Mutations:  Aberrant Form (Phase-State)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Mutants In The News — Gimme Shelter Edition

Over at the always astounding and amazing Retronaut gallery, there's an entry chock full o' pics of an unearthed 60s-era bomb shelter.


The photos, credited to a Rogers Turner, are AMAZING.  Check 'em out.

"F" is for "Floral Snake"

Floral Snake

No. Enc.:  1d4 (1d4)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement:  75' (25')
Armor Class:  7
Hit Dice:  3+2
Attacks:  1 (bite)
Damage:  1d8 + poison
Save:  L3
Morale:  9
Hoard Class:  None
XP:  240

Floral snakes are 10'-12' long ambulatory plants with sinuous stem-bodies, leafy "tongues", and flowery "hoods".  While able to draw nutrients and moisture from the soil with their tail-roots, they favor live prey.

The type of poison injected by a floral snake's thorn-fangs is determined at random on the Poison Class Table [p. 50 of the Mutant Future Core Rules].  And being masters of camouflage, floral snakes Surprise on a roll of 1-5 on 1d6 when encountered in wooded or overgrown areas.

Floral snakes "bleed" a nutritive sap, and the pulpy remnants (which taste like a mixture of melon and copper) of a deceased specimen provide enough liquid to hydrate an adventurer for up to 3 days.

Mutations:  Animal Limbs Or Organs (Serpentine Body), Free Movement, Full Senses, Thermal Sensitivity [D], Toxic Weapon (Venom)

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Mutants In The News — "This Is Evolution In Action" Edition

The world's first hybrid sharks have been discovered, with better temperature-adaptive capabilities than their progenitors.  Accordingly, the mutants have expanded their turf well beyond their historical boundaries.

Choice quotes from lead researcher Jess Morgan, of the University of Queensland:

"It's very surprising because no one's ever seen shark hybrids before...."

"It's enabled a species restricted to the tropics to move into temperate waters."

"This is evolution in action."

But here's my fave:

"And in fact, this may be happening in more species than these two."


"A" is for "Armigo"

Armigo  ("Harmy Ant")

No. Enc.:  2d8 (1d8x10)
Alignment:  See below
Movement:  120' (40')
  —Burrow:  18' (6')
Armor Class:  6
Hit Dice:  6
Attacks:  5 or 1 or 2 (4 claws, 1 bite, or 1 sting, or 2 weapons)
Damage:  1d4 / 1d4 / 1d4 / 1d4 / 1d10, or 1d8 + poison, or by 2 weapons
Save:  L6
Morale:  11
Hoard Class:  See Below
XP:  570

Armigos are 5' tall, spiky, chitinous insectoids that strike terror into the hearts of all denizens of the Mutant Future.  Based on the tales of those few fortunate souls who survived encounters with the dread beings, an insidious pattern emerges.

When Armigos first appear in a region, they are little more than brutes.  They mindlessly run roughshod over the landscape and strip it of vegetation and wild game, stinging (and injecting a Class 4 Poison) indiscriminately all the while.  They show no interest in material goods [meaning a Hoard Class of None].  They then vanish for a 2d4 weeks...

...but upon reappearing, Armigos evince the rudiments of culture.  They construct thatch/mud domiciles, fashion primitive tools, and adorn their bodies with ornaments [gaining Hoard Class V].  At this point, they actively hunt larger prey, including humanoids and other sentients....

And then they vanish again for another 2d4 weeks.

At the end of this duration, and always at the most inopportune time, the Armigos appear again...armed to the mandibles with Ancient weaponry and artifacts [Hoard Classes XV and XVIII], and the wherewithal to use them.  They make bombastic, imperious demands of all settlements in a region, and overrun any all who dare oppose them.  The militant insects add the residents to their ranks, and march their slave-armies to conquer other communities.

At the end of 1d6 months (and usually after all their press-ganged minions have perished from exhaustion, starvation, battle, or being eaten by their masters), the remaining Armigos vanish...

...and the cycle begins anew.

Mutations:  Toxic Weapon (Venom)