Runequest Thursday #58 - Chaotic Mutant Dragon - Runequestified!

Clint Staples

For this Runequest Thursday, I thought I would make use of the ongoing thread at d-Infinity.net for Oddities of Chaotic Mutation. SO I used the tables provided there to roll up a chaos mutant. Then I ran him through the Runequestifier [tm].

I now present to you here, along with some back story that ties him into my ongoing Brightwater campaign. With very little effort, you can adapt the background to your own game.

My first step was to generate the base creature, the number of chaotic mutations it would have, and then the mutations themselves. If you want to follow along, or roll your own, everything you need to do this is provided in the thread. You may need to scroll around a bit though, the tables are scattered through the posts. When Will Thrasher and I put this out via Skirmisher Publishing and DrivethruRPG, all of that will be sorted out, of course.

 

Here are the rolls that I got:

On the Base Creature Table [because I did not want to necessarily default to human as the base creature], I rolled a 3. Awesome - this gave me the result 'Dragon, Gryphon or some other mythological creature'. I chose dragon. In Glorantha, that means a dream dragon.

On the Afflictions Table [where you determine how many rolls to make on the Chaotic Mutations list] I rolled a 10. This gave me 1d4 rolls [not exploding]. I rolled a 4. So Hulgrdrin gets 4 Chaotic Mutations.

So I have a dream dragon, tainted by four chaotic mutations. I decided to stick with the first 100 Oddities we have on the list. Currently we are up to about 140 or so, but I left the extras off the list for the time being, just rolling d100 four times. Here are my individual rolls:

  • 34. Abnormal Excrimentation: Strange alchemical processes occur in the creature's digestive track. When answering a call of nature, a creature with this mutation excretes nothing, coal, ichor, worms, lead, or greek fire. I rolled 1d6 to see which one I got; my result was 5: Lead].
  • 90: Toothy: Mismatched teeth and fangs protrude from a random location on the Body Location Table. At your discretion, they may be attached to a working set of jaws, even a mouth and digestive system, or they may be only partly formed, or not fully externalized, and clashing bloodily beneath the skin of the afflicted creature. I roll for Location on the Body Location Table and got [4] Right Arm. I translated this to right forleg for the dragon, and decided it would be cool to have it up by the neck.
  • 92. Grave Teeth: The creature's teeth quickly rot, break, and regrow throughout the day. The creature finds itself frequently spitting out chunks of broken teeth as it speaks and eats. If the creature has multiple mouths with teeth, choose which mouth has rotting teeth randomly. There is a 15% chance this mutation affects all the creature's mouths. I rolled d100 with a 50% chance that the main mouth would be the one affected. I got 64, so the secondary mouth on the right shoulder is the one with Grave Teeth. Then I rolled again to see if the 15% chance of ALL mouths being affected. I got over 15, so only the secondary mouth was affected.
  • 72. Miasmic: This creature exudes a noxious cloud around itself. Roll 1d4: 1 - The miasma is 'merely' a cloud of noxious gas; 2 - The cloud is flammable, the creature from which it emanates is not; 3 - The cloud is actually composed of tiny biting midges; 4 - The miasma is under the conscious control of its 'owner' who can send it out as questing tendrils, even sensing or touching with them. [Cloud of biting midges]. I roll 1d4, and got 3 - Midges. I decided that tiny was relative, given that the dragon was about the size of an elephant.

Now I have all my rolls, so I started statting out the dragon, which I named Hulgrdrin, and began thinking about his back story some. You can see the Datafile for him [attached], but I have included his back story below.

 

Hulgrdrin is a dream dragon that has become tainted with chaos. When young a pride of gryphons drove him into a chaos haunt in the great Wasteland, where he spent several difficult years. In that time, he was captured by a powerful vampire Lord of Vivamort, who hoped to give the dragon’s blood and essence to the god of the Undead by sacrificed him at the Well of Gloom. Instead, Hulgrdrin survived and was changed. The shocked vampire was bitten in half by a new mouth that had erupted from the neck of the young dragon. The remains were reduced to ash.

Hulgrdrin was free. But not for long. Even in the wasteland he was hated and hunted. Many folk would have happily avoided the dragon, but those who hated chaos hounded him westward to the Condor Crags, where Hugrdrin found the high mouth of a deep cavern that prevented most attacks by belligerent Storm Bulls, etc. For years he lived simply hunting wild horses and the occasional human that strayed too near, while he explored the deep caves at the back of his home.

In one of his delvings, Hugrdrin came across a large family of trolls, the Razak clan. After an initial run of good luck, Hulgrdrin was taken prisoner and chained in his lair. For years he was held captive, fed by the trolls, his condition deteriorating with lack of exercise, excreting magical lead that the trolls prized. The Razaks grew rich and fat from the trade, and from consumption of the delicious midges that buzzed angrily about the poor dragon. They also benefited from the security that the dream dragon provided. Few dared to attack the Razaks. Certainly none who entered the high cave that was his home survived. And the trolls got richer from the gear and magic the would-be dragon-slayers brought along on their doom.  

Exactly how Hulgrdrin became free is not known, but he has been seen in the skies of  the Condor Crags. Perhaps the Razaks grew overconfident and let the dragon loose for an instant. Maybe the heavy chains which bound him for so long grew weak in the moldering cavern. Or it might be that Hulgrdrin simply exerted himself as he had never done before, and cast off the bonds of his servitude.

Hulgrdrin still bears the scars of the crude manacles on all four of his limbs. He is currently underweight and understrength from years of confinement. Given the toll that his chaos taint takes on him, it will take some time to recover from this. However, his current rich diet of fatty trolls has allowed him to make some progress. Hulgrdrin hates trolls above all things and will not suffer one to exist if he can help it. Given the opportunity, he has taken to ‘farming’ the creatures, allowing mature trolls to breed, then eating the stunting things they produce. The fortunes of the surviving Razaks have fallen low indeed, just as the hoard, and the confidence, of the dragon has grown. Hulgrdrin has begun making his presence felt in the western wasteland and the Condor Crags, picking off small groups of nomads and adventurers. He is aware of Kazakorang, the dragon of the Zola Fel, and wishes to keep clear of his neighbor until his strength returns.

Art for this post: Chaos Dragon, by der Reiko.