New Mutant Monday #12 - Blasters

Chris Van Deelen

No. Enc: 3d12
Alignment: Neutral
Movement: 150' (50')
Armor Class: 3
Hit Dice: 1 hit point
Attacks: 1 (bite)
Damage: 1d2
Save: L1
Morale: 4
Hoard Class: None

These little creatures are both a major nuisance and a great danger to the hunters, tribals that live in or near the foothills and mountains of the Rocky Mountain range. Before the final wars the ancestors of these creatures were viewed merely as annoying rodents. Now, they are something far worse.

Physically, they appear pretty much exactly the same way they did before the apocalypse, as their original ancestors were the common mountain chipmunk. The easiest way to differentiate the dangerous creatures from the harmless rodents is the size and coloring. Blasters stand at nearly a foot in length, from tip of the nose to the end of their tail and weigh in no more than a quarter pound. The pelt is a light tan with black spots running down the back. The tail is about an inch in length and the tip is jet black.

They live together in communal burrows in extended families of up to thirty-six individuals. These creatures are nearly pure herbivores, living off grass and other small plants, although they have been known to occasionally snack on insects.

The typical creature will have a live span of at maximum three years, if they’re lucky enough not to have become a meal to predators, succumbed to disease, or find themselves running out in front of rapidly moving vehicles - or blow up.

Unlike their ancestors, these rodents do not hibernate, but instead gather food to get them through the winter months. A female blaster can give birth up to four litters a year consisting of 1-8 pups after eighteen day gestation period.

The pups grow to full maturity after six months.  In order to prevent inbreeding and to keep local populations down, once a community has reached the maximum of thirty six members, the youngest members of the community split off and travel to set up a communal den, picking up members of other communities along the way.

Scholars in the wastes speculate that they might have actually been a terror weapon (albeit a very strange terror weapon) because of the way they react physically to any type of energy damage. If a creature is hit by any type of energy damage (kinetic, electrical, laser, etc.) that does 4 or more points of damage will cause it to quite literally explode! The death of the creature causes 5d6 points of damage in a 15’ radius a save versus energy is allowed and if it succeeds the target takes no damage. For some reason (scholars believe to prevent the species from going extinct) all members of this species are completely immune to the explosive effect of blasters going off around them.

There are tribals and other groups that actively capture and breed these creatures to be used as just that – weapons. In order to prevent disasters, many people have learned that when dealing with creatures of any type, the best thing is to use poisons or low impact weapons in order to greatly reduce the chance that they might be dealing with a blaster.

Mutations: toxic weapon (special)