New Mutant Monday #99 - Infectious Metamorphic Horror

Chris Van Deelen

No. Enc: 2d12
Alignment: Neutral
Movement: 120’ (40’)
AC: 6
HD: 4
Attacks: 2 claws and 1 bite
Damage: 1d6+1 / 1d6+1 / 1d4+1 & infection (see description)
Save: L4
Morale: 11
Hoard Class: Incidental

One of the few creatures in the wastelands that is a known biological weapon. This creature was created by an unknown fundamentalist religious group during the final wars, and was used to turn the ‘heathens’ and non-believers into the insects that these religious zealots believed them to be. They designed the creatures and infected homosexuals, those who did not believe in their god, and generally anyone who disagreed with their views.

In the most ironic twist of fate or karma depending on which information is uncovered and brought to light, after the scientists were successful in creating the infestation, the religious zealots turned it on them, infecting and killing them.

These creatures are genetically engineered cockroaches. They are non-intelligent (at least by human standards), and what makes them so horrible is the way they reproduce. Like many monstrosities in the wastelands, these creatures rely on hosts in which they inject their genetic material. This material causes a metamorphosis to occur, converting the mass and matter of the host into the insect, which will then burst from the host’s body, leaving behind the empty, blood coated flesh.

Otherwise these monsters appear to be nothing more than gargantuan cockroaches, truly huge in size, being the size of the average human. They have six legs, two long antenna, mandibles and wings, which allow them to fly.

The creatures loath light of any type, particularly sunlight, although it does not harm them. If subjected to a laser or other light-based attacks, they must make a saving throw versus death or be blinded. Light-based weapons also do +1 per dice damage to these creatures.

Sticking to tunnels, ruins and other locations where they can hide from the light, these creatures live as cockroaches always have. They mate (although they cannot produce eggs), forage for food and that is about the extent of their lives.

They are also completely immune to radiation, so they often live in radioactive zones. Furthermore, these creatures have such a simple genetic structure they are immune to any sort of mutation or chemical concoction that would cause genetic changes, including the dreaded genetic Doppelganger mutation.

When they encounter humanoids, they will swarm the target and slash at it with their claws and bite. Each time they bite, they inject their own genetic material in a substance that is disturbingly like semen. The victim is allowed a single saving throw versus poison and if it succeeds, they are immune to the effects of the genetic material – for only twenty-four hours.

If the saving throw fails, nothing happens – at first. The metamorphosis is quick, requiring a mere 12 hours. During this time, the victim feels nothing except hunger, they become ravenously hungry and will eat and eat and eat in order to fuel the genetic metamorphosis they are undergoing.

Exactly twelve hours after being infected, the final change occurs and their minds are destroyed as the brain converts into that of the roach. No matter where the victim is, they will lay down and in 1d10 rounds the new cockroach will rip free from the skin and skitter away, typically horrifying anyone unlucky enough to witness such a gruesome and tragic end.

If the saving throw fails, the only way to prevent the transformation is to use a Filter-dose or any sort of medical drug that can either repair genetic damage or purge chemicals, disease or other infections. As long as it is administered within eleven hours of infection. After 11 hours, it is too late for the victim.

Mutations: Genetic Doppelganger, gigantism.