New Mutant Monday #8 - Walker

Chris Van Deelen

No. Enc: 6d10
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement: 60’ (20’) Land
180' (60') Water
AC: 4
HD: 2
Attacks: I pebble, 1 bite, 1 tail-slap
Damage: 3d3 plus possible stun, 2d3, 1d6+2
Save: L6
Morale: 8
Hoard Class: None

The name is a bit of a misnomer. This mutant descendant of the Salmon has adapted to live on and near land. They can be found both in the ocean, as well as in rivers and even lakes. Unlike their ancestors, who only travelled upriver in order to spawn and then die, these creatures no longer die after laying their eggs.

Walkers are still recognizable as Salmon, although now their fins have evolved so that they more resemble feet or paws. The creatures have larger bodies and the scales are a great deal denser, giving them excellent protection against physical attack. The typical adult Walker is about a yard in length and can weigh in excess of 100 pounds.

They still live around bodies of water, but due to their mutations and adaptations, they have been found further and further inland, and are likely to have found homes in many of the mountain lakes that dot the Rocky Mountain range.

The creatures prey on smaller fish and animals, which they use a specialized attack to stun and then consume. They grab gullets full of pebbles, which they can fire like a projectile weapon at targets. This is a ranged attack and the force they use to expel the pebbles is surprisingly powerful. The creature will aim for the head, and if the attack is successful, the target must make a saving throw versus stun or become stunned for 1d4 rounds.

After successfully stunning the target, the creature will then come up and bite and slap to either kill larger and more difficult targets, or simply swallow the smaller targets whole.

As stated, the scales of these creatures are quite tough and are not easily penetrated. They gain a Damage Reduction of 6 against all piercing and slashing attacks (arrows, swords, teeth, claws, bullets). Other forms of attack still work quite effectively against these creatures.

It has been discovered these creatures hunt in ‘schools’ and will often co-ordinate their attacks on larger and more dangerous prey, and then share the meal between all the school members.

When not hunting, they live in the lakes, streams, rivers and of course, the ocean. Once every year they will return to the source of water, in which they were born and spawn. The females will lay 10d100 eggs each, and the males will fertilize them. Unlike most other species of fish, after the eggs have been fertilized, the parents will stay and protect the spawning grounds from all predators.

Once the young have hatched however, the parents will then leave them to survive on their own.

Even though they are larger and mutated, and are quite dangerous, the flesh of the Walker is still quite tasty and makes a significant portion of the diet for many creatures living along the coastline, and even further inland along rivers and many lakes.

Mutations: Aberrant Form (new body parts, natural weapons)