Cannies

Chris Van Deelen

No. Enc: 3d6
Alignment: Chaotic
Movement: 90’ (30’)
AC: by armor
HD: 8
Attack: 1 weapon or 2 claws and 1 bite
Damage: by weapon type or 1d6+2 / 1d6+2 and 2d4+2 and disease
Save: L12
Morale: 6
Hoard Class: I (x4), II (x4), III (x2), always one primitive fire-arm, VII (65%), XIV (55%)

Many of the humanoids found in the wasteland are twisted, bitter beings, their bodies and minds deformed and ravaged by radiation and toxins. Some are able to get past the joker cards the fates dealt them when it came to genetic damage and are able to become productive members of society (see Wisdom from the Wastelands 40: New Races 2, the damaged).

Those are few and far between, and a lot end up becoming hideous and vicious predators in their own right. These offshoots are known as cannibals, or Cannies for short, as they prey on other humanoids for sustenance. This is not because they choose this, but they were inflicted with a horrible mutation that forces them to eat the flesh of other humanoids in order to survive.

Physically these mutants appear to be roughly humanoid – they possess two arms (usually), two legs, one head and a human-sized body. Genetic mutation has often twisted their bodies, caused tumor-like growths to appear, twisted limbs, and even re-arranged facial features.  In other words, they tend to look like the twisted monsters they are.

They are often found hidden in the deep wilderness, but never too far from frequently travelled trade-routes or areas where other humanoids would need to visit. After all, they do need a steady source of food. The homes of these creatures are usually as twisted as they are - deep caves, rubble-choked ruins or vine-tangled forests. They are messy and those who are lucky enough to enter and return from their homes find them filthy and filled with the bones of previous victims, often turned into furniture and even cutlery and eating utensils, plates, bowls and cups. The skin is also used, turned into leather clothing, blankets and so forth. The homes of these monsters are truly the stuff of nightmares.

One typical sign they are nearby is the smell. Rotting flesh seems to seep from their very pores and can be easily detected when anyone comes within 100 feet of these creatures.

Although twisted in body and in mind, they are very cunning and tend to create elaborate traps or lures to bring prey to them. They are not above using live bait (such as their own children, as long as they are not too physically deformed), artifacts, even treasure. The creatures lay in wait, hidden by trap-doors or in blinds, even occasionally using Ghillie suits.

They are also quite adept at using primitive fire-arms and melee weapons, preferring the latter over the former, and if given a chance, will gladly wade in with their hands and mouths, clawing and biting their prey.  A bite from one of these monsters is particularly bad, as they are disease carriers, typically having Rabies or Flesh eating bacteria (to which they are immune), or any other type of disease the ML might wish to use. Anyone bitten must make a saving throw versus poison or contract the disease. Each bite requires a new saving throw.

They are also very capable of constructing and wearing armor, which in on itself is usually terrifying. They make leather armor (AC 7) out of the hides of their previous victims, sometimes layering the hides and using bones to create a type of organic ‘plate’ armor (AC 4). Those who see the armor typically suffer a +2 to any moral checks they might be forced to make.

Few of the mutants appear to be normal, just regular humans, but they still possess the need to feed upon other humans, and they exude the rotten flesh stench. These are the members of the families that are sent out to interact with caravans or to lure prey from towns and cities, often citing lost ruins or caches of lost technology in order to lure prey away from safety.

Those who know these creatures will recognize the scent, so these ‘bait’ members often wear copious amounts of perfume or dirty clothing in order to try and hide their tell-tale scents.

Many have attempted to speak with these monsters in order to prevent attacks or to turn them away from their way of life. Those not powerful enough to fight became food, furniture and clothing for the creatures. They are pure monsters who consider all other humanoids only as a source of food and have no interest in negotiation or talking. After all, do other men speak to the cow they are about to slaughter and consume? Of course not!

Lastly the mutants have several other mutations they are able to gain benefit from. Roll 1d3 for the number of additional mutations they possess and then consult the following chart.

Roll

Mutation

1

Aberrant Form (natural weapon)

2

Chameleon Epidermis

3

Dual Headed

4

Dwarfism

5

Gigantism

6

Increased Physical Attribute

7

Natural Armor

8

Night Vision

 

Mutations: Bizarre appearance, dietary requirement change (cannibalism), scent, toxic weapon (diseases)

Source: The Hills have Eyes, and many other similar slasher movies.