Thursday, October 9, 2014

Devastation Drive-In: The Final Cut — 'Empire Of The Ants' (1977)


No. Enc.:  5d10 (12d12)
Alignment:  Chaotic
Movement:  180' (60')
Armor Class:  3
Hit Dice:  4
Attacks:  1 (bite)
Damage:  2d6
Save:  L4
Morale:  12
Hoard Class:  VII x3
XP:  245

Self-proclaimed masters of the Earth, The Ancients wantonly polluted their environs, foolishly disposing of nuclear waste in the most haphazard manners possible...

...but their carelessness proved their undoing, as a new atomic-spawned species—a superior species—arose to challenge not only humanity for food and resources...


Tyrænts are radioactive, ursine-sized insects found in tropical environs.  Their screeches sound eerily like human screams.  Territorial and aggressive, tyrænts wage war on local giant bug populations.

Tyrænts avoid open flame, and a moderate-sized campfire is enough to keep them at bay. Fire-based attacks inflict an additional +3 damage per die, and drop Morale to 6.

The creatures are highly intelligent.  Upon encountering a group of PCs, tyrænts stealthily observe from afar, picking off stragglers and loners.  And then, when the time is right, tyrænts attack en masse, destroying vehicles and slaughtering mounts to demoralize their victims into fleeing.  Survivors don't get away easy, though, as tyrænts herd their quarry over miles of terrain until reaching their nesting grounds, where the most terrible of fates awaits!

Mutations:  Frailty (Fire) [D], Gigantism, Metaconcert

Turf War!

Tyrænt Queen

No. Enc.:  1
Alignment:  Chaotic
Movement:  180' (60')
Armor Class:  3
Hit Dice:  7
Attacks:  1 (bite)
Damage:  2d8
Save:  L7
Morale:  10
Hoard Class:  XXII x3
XP:  2,190

Tyrænt queens are the megalomaniacal masterminds that rule over their respective colonies.  They seek to conquer all local sentient populations and force them to "work for the ants, feed them...for they are superior."¹

Tyrænt queens possess an insidious variant of the Fragrance Development mutation.  They discharge 15' radius clouds of vaporous pheromones that dominate those with 16 CON or less.  Tyrænt queens can use this ability every 3 rounds, with no limit on the total number of victims affected.  Enslavement lasts one full week(!), and at the end of the duration, a tyrænt queen lines up her minions like chattel for "re-indoctrination", which can take a considerable length of time.  [Forgiving Mutant Lords may allow certain Ability Checks and / or Saving Throws to break free of the pheromonal control.]  Androids, Mutant Plants, those with appropriate life support capabilities, and  ordinary animals are immune to the effects.

Frighteningly intelligent, tyrænt queens possess the insight and guile to control entire towns, and they specifically target locales that produce great quantities of food (farming communities, plantations, sugar refineries, etc.).  Queens  telepathically command enslaved officials to maintain outside business / trade relationships so as to keep things running smoothly, and ensure a steady influx of resources.  Tyrænt queens arm their most powerful and capable thralls with weapons, armor, and equipment, and grant ordinary citizens enough autonomy to go about their daily lives in the presence of outsiders.

Not only do tyrænt queens suffer the same fire damage as above, but if attacked for 3 consecutive rounds with flame, they lose control over their brain-slaves.  Those thus freed are disoriented for 1d6 rounds, and are generally inclined to flee, though they may make attacks at -3 To Hit.  Furthermore, all tyrænts in the area go into a panicked frenzy, and attack anything and everything until the queen eliminates the threat.

Mutations:  Fragrance Development (Modified), Frailty (Fire) [D], Gigantism, Metaconcert, Neural Telepathy

1:  Actual Film Dialogue