Chapter Ten: Creatures
|Wild animals never kill
for sport. Man is the only one to whom the torture
and death of his fellow creatures is amusing in
|- James Anthony Froude
all Creations are designed for active roles. Objects like trees, warehouses,
and bridges perform their duties perfectly well by just sitting there
and not wandering off at critical moments. If a Creation is intended
for more proactive tasks, such as moving around, carrying loads, or vaporizing
civilians, it needs either a mind of its own, or
intelligent operators at the controls.
The difference between a Creature and a Vehicle is that Creatures are capable of independent thought and action, whether their brain is
composed of meat, circuitry, or magic. A mech piloted by a minifig is a robotic Vehicle; a mech operating independently to destroy all minifigs is a robotic Creature.
|"I used to think that the brain was the most wonderful organ in my body. Then I realized who was telling me this."
|- Emo Philips
Life is cheap in the BrikVerse, and intelligence is valued even less. BrikWars passes those savings on to you! For the low price of a single CP, a Creation can be given a Mind, becoming a full-fledged Creature with a Skill die of d6.
While d6 is the default Skill die for the Minds of standard minifigs and equivalent combatants, other Skill dice are available for units of greater or lesser ability. Each Skill die size costs twice as much as the die below it, up to a maximum Skill of d12.
|In BrikWars, a unit's Skill Rating is always represented by a single die with no modifiers. Skill Ratings like "1d6+2" or "2d4" are disallowed, because they reduce the element of chance for Actions with lower Use Ratings, and unbalance the odds for Critical Failures, Overskill, and Bonus Dice. If you don't have any dice other than d6es, you should try to stick to the d6-only units and equipment as much as possible, rather than having to resort to d6es plus modifiers.
||(see Half Minds, below)
||specialists, officers, veterans
* - Skill d4s can't roll high enough to earn Overskill Bennies, but can still earn a Bonus d4 on a Critical Success.
Like Weapons, Propulsion systems, and Controls, a Creature's Mind should have a specific location within the Creature, with a physical component to represent it (typically the head, for most organic Creatures). If that component is destroyed, the Mind is also destroyed, and it ceases to be a living Creature unless it has at least one backup Mind still functioning.
|“To lead untrained people to war is to throw them away.”
Creatures with Minds are fully independent, able to form their own
strategies and wage effective warfare without supervision. If this
doesnt fit your vision for the Creature, you may elect instead
to give it a Half Mind, at one half the cost of a regular Mind.
||while executing program
|| can be reprogrammed
|| robots, mind-control victims
||when directed by master
|| accepts new masters when free
|| horses, fanboys
||while restrained by master
||never controlled by owner when free
Half-Minded Creatures operate no differently than full-Minded Creatures as long as their requirements for Usefulness are met. A Horse is Useful when a rider directs it, a computer is Useful while it has a program to execute, a slave is Useful while under the lash, and a regular civilian can be Useful when he's not being an idiot.
When the requirements for Usefulness aren't met, a Half-Minded Creature becomes a liability. The player controlling the Creature must immediately hand control to one of his or her Enemy players. The new player, on their next turn, may then direct the Creature to take either a Movement or an Action (but not both). At the end of the turn, if the Creature has not been returned to Usefulness, then the new player must hand control of the Creature to an Enemy of his or her own. The cycle continues until the Creature has been made Useful again or until it is killed or otherwise removed from battle.
- An Incompetent Creature is similar to other full-Minded
Creatures, but due to a lack of training, motor skills, or intelligence,
it is prevented it from being an effective combatant.
An Incompetent Creatures Skill die is set at a d4, which means it can never roll high enough to earn Overskill. Instead, a Skill d4 can earn Bonus d4s on a Critical Success like non-Skill dice.
Incompetent units suffer from Stupidity. If a player controls more than one unit with Stupidity, then at the beginning of the player's turn, before he or she takes any other action, one Enemy of the player's choice may choose any one of the Stupid units and control it as if it were their own for that turn. It's nice if they can also come up with a good story for why the unit is engaging in its particular Stupid behavior, but not required.
Examples: Zombies, civilians,
zombified civilians, Republicans, corporate middle managers,
clone-brand minifigs, ogres, mutants, Democrats
A Programmed Creature is limited in its ability to
make high-level strategic decisions, and instead follows
a simple set of behaviors.
Programmed Creatures are given
a list of behaviors at the beginning of the battle, and
may only behave in accordance with those instructions.
A Programmed behavior must be fairly specific: Move
to the nearest wounded allies and attempt to heal them
or Stay close to the nearest allied troops and fire at enemy
combatants are fine Programmed behaviors; Defeat
all enemies and Win the battle are not. Random animals and wildlife are sometimes made Programmed for efficiencys
sake, with short behaviors like flee from any nearby
threat or if it's nearby and looks edible,
try to eat it.
While not technically Creatures,
mechanized defense systems are often given Programmed behaviors as well, such as
"fire at anything in range and moving" or "if
intelligent life is detected, release deadly neurotoxin gas."
|Mechanized traps are often set up with free Triggers rather than expensive Minds - see 8.5: Field Hazards.
A Programmed Creature is Useful as long as it has a Program to execute. Deleting the program or tricking it into a paradox can cause the Creature to go haywire.
Examples: Kill-bots, golems,
summoned elementals, guard dogs, mind-control victims,
- A Submissive Creature may have a limited ability
to think on its own, but prefers to obey the commands
of a master. Under an intelligent minifigs direction,
the Creature may act as intelligently as if it had a full
Mind, but if abandoned, the Creature reverts to whatever
animal-like behavior seems appropriate: milling around
aimlessly, running and hiding, or attacking everything
A Submissive Creature loses its Usefulness if its master is killed, wanders off, or stops paying attention to it. If another intelligent minifig can catch a masterless
Creature, regardless of whether hes on the same
team, the Creature accepts him as its new master.
Examples: Steeds, androids,
grad students, interns, work animals, targeting
computers, football players, talk radio listeners, fetishists, cultists
- Subjugated Creatures are restrained or harnessed
and forced to cooperate against their will. They
may be completely intelligent, but have Half a
Mind to break free and run amuck. As long as they are
kept in their restraints, they must follow the orders
of their captors, but if they can be released, they will do
whatever they can to prevent being enslaved again. This
usually means attacking their captors or fleeing the battlefield,
but can also be as simple as just attacking everything
in sight, regardless of allegiance.
A Subjugated Creature must be kept in chains or under the whip of an overseer in order to be kept Useful. If it breaks free, control of the Creature is handed from Enemy to Enemy as usual, but can never be handed back to the original player. If the original player is the only Enemy at the table, control does not transfer.
Examples: galley slaves,
schoolchildren, chain gangs, draft oxen, conscripts,
berserkers, retail employees
Example: The Horse
|Example: Horses (Chapter H: The Horse) are Submissive Creatures with the following stats:
||(Structure Level ½) x (Size 2")
||(Move 2") x 5
|| 1CP x Half Mind
Kick or Bite
CC Use:2 Damage:1d6
|Free with Gross Manipulators
This WarHorse's Horse Heavy Armor costs +3CP, grants it a Shielded bonus, and reduces it to Half Speed.
If the WarHorse loses its rider, it will behave seemingly at random, controlled by one Enemy after another until it finds a new master or exits the battlefield.
Sir IVasscus the Monkey shows off some fancy horse barding. During the events of Rainbow War II: Jellybean Apocalypse Gaiden, the horse was revealed to actually be Sir Stalin's horse Trotsky in disguise.
|Elements shown: LEGO, custom graphics
By default, Creatures with Minds have the same general abilities as a regular minifig.
As long as they have the proper appendages, they can use equipment,
open doors, and toss items around as normal. Common sense should be
an adequate guide for whether a Creature has the proper body shape
to work a stick shift or the fine manipulators to type on a keyboard.
In the occasional instances in which players aren't sure, a What I
Say Goes roll can quickly resolve the issue (for instance, an intelligent cockroach can type on
a keyboard by jumping real hard, but it takes him twice as long as
normal, and he can't use the shift key without the help of a friendly
Carrying and Manipulating Objects
|| can operate Controls and weapons
can throw and carry items
|no natural attacks; can Grab or Shove
||minifig hands, robot manipulators
|| can carry or drag items
|| one natural CC attack, equivalent to one Melee Weapon up to Creature Size.
may automatically Grab on successful hit,
| dog teeth, giant lobster claws,
By default, Creatures have one pair of arms and hands (or equivalent Manipulators) that they can use to carry and manipulate objects. Additional arms can be purchased for 1CP for every inch in the Size of the arms. (Minifig arms are counted as 1/2" each , so an extra pair of minifig arms costs +1CP.) There is no discount for buying a Creature without arms or hands.
Creatures without hands or equivalent appendages are at a major disadvantage. They may be able to carry and drag objects, but they can't operate weapons or devices in any useful way. To compensate for this, Creatures without hands can have one free natural Close Combat attack equivalent to Melee Weapon up to their own Size (8.1: Weapon Size). Dogs can bite, horses can kick, giant scorpions can sting, and possessed food processors can initiate a hostile puree maneuver. For teeth or claw attacks (or if otherwise appropriate), a Creature can make an automatic Grab with any successful hit with its natural attack.
A Creation with the ability to pick up items can carry an object or group of objects up to its own Size at full speed, pull a wheeled object up to twice its own Size at full speed, and push or drag a non-wheeled object up to twice its own Size at half speed. Objects with Heavy Armor or Armor Plated sections are very heavy, and are treated as if they were twice their actual Size. For objects that are Too Big to pull or carry, creations can Divert All Power or use Teamwork to increase their effective strength, just as if they were trying to power a large weapon (8.1: Weapon Size).
As with minifigs, a Creature with a standard Mind has one Action
and can focus on one target per turn.
If that's not enough for the species a player has in mind, they can purchase
additional Minds at the usual cost, including Skill Boosts. These Minds may all exist in the same physical element as the Creature's original Mind, or they may be put in different places if the Creature doesn't want to put all its eggs in one basket, but they must have a physical location.
A Creature with an extra Mind has an extra Action that it can use to focus on one additional
target during its turn. This allows a Creature with multiple Ranged
or Close Combat attacks to divide them between multiple
targets in the same turn, or to make multiple types of attacks on the same target. A multi-brained or superintelligent
Creature can even take two or more completely dissimilar
Actions in the same turn (e.g., playing the piano while
laying down sniper fire); however, it may not use the
same weapon, hand, or equipment item for more than one
Action during the turn, and it cannot use more weapons or devices than are allowed under its Power limitations (8.1: Weapon Size).
|Multitasking Example: Professor Monkeyhead
Example: A pioneer in the field of self-bioengineering, the six-armed Professor Monkeyhead is brilliant but insane.
Once a normal minifig (4CP), the Professor has improved his regular Skill d6 Mind (1CP) to a powerful d10 (4CP) for a total sum of +3CP.
With all the extra brainpower, Professor Monkeyhead was able to develop two extra Minds for multitasking purposes: a second d8 Mind for +2CP and a third d6 Mind for +1CP, allowing him to focus on three Actions simultaneously at different levels of Skill. This brings his total value to 10CP, enough to apply for tenure in his university department, and possible elevenure or twelveure if he continues augmenting.
He still can't use more than a minifig's Power limit of two weapon inches in a turn, but he plans to use the extra Actions for filling out grant applications and claiming authorship on his grad students' research.
10.2 The Medik
|Chemikal analysis shows that Ablogikal Binding Substance was in use as early as Retkon 1,963. It is believed that the interdimensional disruptions caused by mishandled ABS may have had mutagenic effects on an earlier species. Records of earlier humanoids are difficult to verify but seem to sport a variety of disfiguring mutations, from stunted and limbless homonculi to strange noodle-limbed giants. Theories abound as to whether the earlier civilizations were aware of the effects of uncontrolled ABS and continued using it anyway, bringing about their own destruction. Too little is currently known about these early eras to draw any conclusions.
The notorious Hospital 555 is first known to have appeared in the timeline of Retkon 1,976. It was staffed by faceless and limbless proto-figs, who captured unsuspecting citizens and performed horrible genetik experiments on them.
The proto-figs' operations culminated in the engineering of the first true minifig. Their ABS gene-splicing madness successfully gave this new fig arms, hands, legs, and even a face.
Consumed with rage and bloodlust after having been submitted to experiments more gruesome than previously thought possible, the first minifig who survived broke free from his restraints, killed the proto-figs who gave him his new body, and he escaped into the world; a deadly killer genetically engineered for destruction. This first minifig was the Deadly Spaceman.
This is also how babies are made.
|"Doctors are the same as lawyers; the only difference is that lawyers merely rob you, whereas doctors rob you and kill you too."
|- Anton Chekhov
Creatures are as susceptible to Damage as any other Creation - Size Damage, Component Damage, and all the other special Damage types work exactly the same way (7.2: Taking Damage).
When doing Damage to a living Creature, it's important to remember that its head and body are treated as the central Structure, while any limbs, wings, tails, or tentacles are Surface Elements with a Structure Level one level lower (7.1: Structure).
Creatures have an extra vulnerability in that their Minds are devices with a physical location, and they can be specifically targeted like any other device. For most Creatures, destroying or severing the head is usually enough to end its adventures in a single stroke. If the location of a Mind isn't obvious from a Creature's anatomy, its owner should point it out to the other players on request.
Another disadvantage of wounded Creatures is that the biological ones (like minifigs) can't be conveniently patched up or reassembled by any passing Mechanik. A Mechanik's abilities only work for mechanical devices, not living flesh.
| There are settings in which this rule becomes fuzzy - biomechanical alien species, Lovecraftian abominatrixes, and mad-geneticist vivisectors may occasionally pop up with attendant Mechaniks for whom biological parts are interchangeable with mechanical ones. This is entirely setting-specific, but should be discussed by players beforehand.
Fortunately, there are minifigs who specialize in meat-based repairs just like Mechaniks specialize in reconfiguring machinery. The Medik is a unit specially trained to perform impromptu surgeries in the field, reviving fallen soldiers over and over again so that each one can experience repeated gruesome deaths in the greatest agonizing variety.
Ker-Triage! Specialty (+2CP): allows a Medik to perform field amputations to revive fallen minifigs and Creatures
Lacking fancy operating facilities or any time for second opinions, the Medik uses the tried-and-true methods of Ker-Triage!, allowing him to quickly discern how many limbs need to be Amputated in order to bring fallen minifigs and Creatures back up to combat readiness.
A Medik carrying proper medikal Tools (3.4: Desperate Measures) can attempt to revive a fallen minifig or other Creature of Size 1" or greater as long as it has at least one head still attached. To do so, he declares a Construction Action, similar to a Mechanik's (7.3: Field Construction), and begins operating.
At the beginning of his next turn, if the Construction Action wasn't interrupted, the Medik rolls a d8 on the Ker-Triage! Table. (If multiple Mediks are operating on the same patient, they each roll separately, and only the highest roll is used.)
| A Medik without his Tools can attempt impromptu Ker-Triage! with any bladed weapon instead, but he rolls a d6 rather than a d8.
If the Medik rolls a five or greater, congratulations! The minifig or Creature is revived with no ill effects. It may immediately stand up and re-equip itself as needed (so that players don't forget it's alive), and it can take Movement and Action and continue fighting as normal starting on its following turn. (On a Critical Success, the revived Creature can jump up and take its turn immediately.) Creatures larger than Size 1" are revived with an Effective Size of 1", along with the limitations that entails - a maximum of Structure Level 1 / Armor of 1d10, in particular (7.2: Taking Damage).
If the Medik rolls less than five, then the problem is more serious
and he'll have to perform one or more Amputations in order to save the patient. The Amputations succeed automatically; the Medik doesn't need to make any Skill or Damage rolls or spend any more Actions to remove the number of limbs indicated by the Ker-Triage! result.
Each limb removed (or otherwise disabled, for Creatures whose limbs can't be removed) counts as one Amputation. Arms and legs are the most common limbs chosen; wings and tentacles will also do. Tails don't count.
If there are not enough regular limbs to satisfy the Amputation requirements, the Medik has no choice but to Amputate the head. This may still save a Creature that has extra heads in reserve, but a normal one-headed Creature will now be dead beyond any hope of Medikal revival.
If the Medik's Construction Action is interrupted, he still rolls on the Ker-Triage! Table and performs the indicated amputations, but the minifig or Creature is not revived. He can continue attempting Ker-Triage! on subsequent turns.
Effects of Amputation
The complete loss of an arm or leg is a massive trauma that causes all surrounding tissue to swell and adrenaline to course through the body, cutting off blood loss and allowing the Creature to ignore the pain, at least until the end of the battle.
Creatures who lose one or more limbs are still capable of continuing to fight. They're just differently capable.
|Effects of Amputation
|one leg/wing lost
||-1" Move each
|legs reduced by half
||Half Speed, on top of other Move penalties
|wings reduced by half
or all legs lost
| Move reduced to 0";
may use Action
to drag self the length of remaining arms
|reduced to one arm
||may not use two-handed equipment
|all arms lost
||may not hold items or use devices
|one head lost
|all heads lost
The loss of legs, wings, or other limbs the Creature uses to move around is treated as Propulsion Damage (9.1: Standard Propulsion). Each Propulsion limb removed or disabled reduces the Creature's Move by 1" (to a minimum of 1", if it still has at least one Propulsion limb remaining). For regular Propulsion types, if half or more of the Creature's Propulsion limbs are lost, it moves at Half Speed after applying all other penalties. For flight Propulsion, the loss of half of the Propulsion limbs means the Creature is grounded and cannot fly.
If all of the Propulsion limbs are lost, the Creature is limited to dragging itself along by the length of any arms it still has attached. (For minifigs, whose arms are each 1/2" long, this means that a minifig with both arms and no legs can drag itself one inch per turn.) This uses up the Creature's Action for the turn; it may not use its arms for anything else. Even if it's still able to drag itself around, a Creature with no Propulsion limbs is treated as one that has no Move ability - it may not Sprint, Bail, or use Angry Inches, and all Close Combat attacks against it automatically hit.
Regardless of the state of its Propulsion limbs, a Creature who loses one or more hands or arms is limited in other obvious ways. A Creature with only one hand can't use a Two-Handed or Long-Ranged Weapon. A Creature with no hands can't use any tools or weapons at all. Less common objects have to be considered on a case-by-case basis; it may take a What I Say Goes Roll to decide whether a given armless minifig can successfully operate a door latch with his teeth or mash a self-destruct button with his face.
In basic BrikWars battles, the treatment of corpses is a matter of taste. Whether they slump over uneventfully or their bodies are blown into discrete plastic bits depends only on how excited the players are about the quality of the attack.
In a battle that includes Mediks, injuries can make a big difference between easily-revived minifigs and hopeless casualties. A minifig with both legs blown off is two points closer to failure on a Ker-Triage! Roll than his anatomically intact buddy, and it's important to track who's just mostly-dead and who's really, really, no-fooling dead.
If players decide to allow Dismemberment, then minifigs and other Size 1" Creatures (or Effective Size 1" Creatures, for larger Creatures on their last inch of life) are no longer unaffected by Damage that exactly matches their Armor. Instead, the attacker (or any Enemy, if there is no attacker) may choose a Disabling consequence based on the type of Damage taken.
|Minifig Dismemberment and Disabling
|| remove one limb of victim's choice
||victim is Incompetent (Skill d4) for one turn,
with potential Stupidity (10.1: Minds )
||Pinned / Entangled
||victim is Grabbed by the weapon
||victim is Knocked Back one inch and Disrupted
If a minifig is killed by Damage equal to double its Armor or greater, then the minifig is Decapitated. Its head is removed, along with any extra heads and whichever other body parts seem appropriate, to show that there is no chance of revival by Mediks on the battlefield.
|If you want to make a human being into a monster, deny them, at the cultural level, any reflection of themselves.
|- Junot Díaz
Among all the interdimensional abominations and ABS-mutated monstrosities in the BrikVerse, there is one Creature that stands above all others in its ability to terrify even the bravest of minifig men. Few indeed are those who can hold their ground in the face of Girls.
Due to their rarity in minifig civilization, it's possible for minifigs to go their entire short lives without ever seeing a Girl, much less talking to one, and many strange and horrible myths have arisen concerning their uncanny powers. In an effort to protect the comfort of the soldiers, minifig civilizations command their Girls to limit themselves to one of two non-threatening stereotypes: either the Damsel-in-Distress, helplessly waiting for a man to save her, or the Fighting Fanservice, who's allowed to participate in combat as long as it's only used as an excuse to wear skimpy chainmail bikinis.
In the field, however, a Girl's interest in adhering to stereotypes rarely survives the first round of combat. The Damsels-in-Distress refuse to miss out on killing stuff, and the Fighting Fanservice forget to pander to the spectators or even remember they exist. This is incredibly upsetting to minifig men, who are unable to accept the idea that not everything revolves around them.
The playthemes of the construction toy world offer any number of pre-built monsters, and there's no limit to the custom species players might come up with on their own. Most of these Creatures are easily handled by the standard rules - a dragon, for instance, is statted as a Flying Horse with a FlameThrower in its mouth (Chapter H: The Horse), while a telekinetic alien is just a regular minifig with a couple of SuperNatural Dice. Nonetheless, there are some Monsters whose abilities truly set them apart.
|Girl units have a special type of Mind known as a Girl Mind, which is handled differently than a regular boy Mind (10.1: Minds). The Skill rating of a Girl unit is called Girl Skill, and is calculated by taking the Skill rating of a boy unit and subtracting zero from it.
The exception is when a Hero unit is a Girl, making him a Girl Hero (Chapter 6: Minifig Heroes). In this case, take the Skill rating of a boy Hero and add zero to it. A Girl unit is worth the same number of Construction Points, but only gets paid half as much.
Vermin: Skill:1d6 Move: 4" (Spidering) Armor: 0 Cost: 2CP Bite: Use:1 Damage: 1
Venomous Vermin: Skill:1d6 Move: 4" (Spidering) Armor: 0 Cost: 3CP Bite: Use:1 Damage: 1d4 Poison
Flying Vermin: Skill:1d6 Move: 4" Flying Armor: 0 Cost: 3CP Bite: Use:1 Damage: 1
|MunchFigs are a magikally created race of half half-figs, spawned from the mixed genetik material of ancient ProtoFigs, living minifigs, and fried chicken legs. Cheap and easily summoned, they serve in wizards' laboratories as diminutive servants and, occasionally, snacks.
Supposedly named for their bite-sized stature and curious magikal properties when eaten, MunchFigs are just as likely to rise up and devour the unsuspecting novice wizard who doesn't realize he's summoned a number larger than he can control.
|(BrikWiki entry: MunchFig)
Elements shown: LEGO, Mega Bloks
Creatures that are so small that their Size is rounded straight down to 0" are called Vermin . The most common Vermin are the simple one-piece pre-molded animals included as props in adventure sets: snakes, bats, spiders, and parrots, for instance, depending on the genre. The small Size of Vermin makes them ineffective as individuals, but their inexpensive price means that they can be purchased in swarms, making them effective for disrupting unarmored foes and supporting the attacks of larger allies.
Tiny objects like Vermin are so small that they're treated as if they have no Size or mass at all. Being effectively weightless, they can be carried like equipment items, or even swung or thrown as Random Objects for Bite Damage. (When throwing large bundles of Vermin, the size of the overall bundle is used, not the sum of all the Vermins' individual Sizes of zeroes.)
Zero weight automatically gives Vermin the Spidering ability: they can climb on any vertical or inverted surface at no penalty (although they must end their turn in a stable position for practicality's sake), and they are immune to Falling Damage (7.6: Creation Combat).
If they have the proper appendages, a Vermin is strong enough to carry a one-handed item of minifig equipment or weaponry at no penalty, or two such items (or one two-handed item) at Half Speed. It isn't strong enough to throw them or use them in combat, however, or to operate mounted weapons or other devices. Vermin have zero Momentum and offer zero Physical Opposition, and cannot perform Shoves.
Vermin have a Structure Level of zero and zero Armor. Any attack that hits a Vermin kills it automatically, without having to make a Damage Roll. Tightly-packed groups of Vermin are especially vulnerable to Explosions and Fire.
If Vermin are Disrupted, units and objects of Size 1" or greater can crush any number of them underfoot with Trample Damage (9.5: Collisions). If the Vermin aren't Disrupted, a unit can choose one of them to try to stomp on, but must treat this as an Attack with Use:0. The Vermin can attempt to Bail out of the way if it wishes, or hope that the stomper Critically Fails his Attack Roll.
Vermin are not able to wield or operate weapons of any size; they must rely on their natural stings or Bites.
A Vermin's Bite is painful but not particularly dangerous - the bite is only effective against unarmored Creatures of Structure Level 1 or less, and even then it only does 1 point of Damage (or 1d4 Poison Damage if it has Venom). Creatures that have a higher Structure Level or are Armored can ignore Vermin almost completely - the Vermin cannot engage such a target in Close Combat at all, although they can still climb around on it and be struck by its Close Combat Attacks in return.
When attacking in cooperation with non-Vermin allies, Vermin are subject to the usual Close Combat limit of three attackers for every inch in the target's Size, or else they risk being struck by their own allies' attacks. When a group of Vermin attacks by itself, it can ignore these limits, forming a Swarm that can pile as many attacks onto an unarmored Creature as there are Vermin able to reach it.
1 point of Damage isn't enough to threaten most enemies, but the Cumulative Damage of several Vermin attacking together can bring down a full-sized minifig if they all make successful Bites at the same time. Vermin are more useful for tying up opponents in Close Combat in high enough numbers to inflict Skill Penalties, and to absorb attacks to protect higher-value allies.
Dimmy: Skill:1d4 (Incompetent) Move: 4" Armor: 4 Cost: 5CP Contagious Bite: Use:2 Damage:1d4 Poison (Monstrous Contagion)
Minifig Dimmies, uniformed in the T-shirts and baseball caps of the human fratboys they seek to emulate, destroy quality construction wherever they find it. They gradually turn their sections of the BrikVerse into endless wastes of shoddy assembly and piles of random elements.
This Mystikal Juniorism is viewed by some as an ultimate escape from the standards and expectations of Brik society, especially by minifigs who have become depressed by their own Critical Failure during a crucial opportunity for righteous destruction.
One of the more admirable aspects of monstrous species is their minifig conversion rate - with nothing more than a bite from the right inhuman monster, anyone can become a vampire, zombie, werewolf, alien breeding husk, or fundamentalist religionist zealot. For a species with Monstrous Contagion, the only thing limiting its spread throughout a population is the number of Monstrous minifig heads the players have to swap in.
Contagious Bite: Cost:+2CP Use:2 Range:CC Damage:1d4 Poison (Monstrous Contagion)
Monstrous Contagion is a Poison (8.5: Field Hazards) that takes over the Mind and transforms the body of its victims. Creatures with Monstrous Contagion have a Contagious Bite that does 1d4 Poison Damage and only affects minifigs.
(Depending on the type of monster involved, players may agree to modify this default - allowing zombies to spread their Poison through claw attacks, for instance, or to make a ComputerVirus that corrupts robots rather than minifigs.)
Unlike regular types of Poison, Monstrous Contagion attacks the Mind rather than the body, so the Poison damage is rolled against the target's Skill instead of Armor. If the Poison Damage Roll is higher than the victim's Skill Roll, then its Mind is destroyed, leaving it helpless and comatose. At the beginning of the Contagious Biter's next turn, the victim's body undergoes whatever horrifying transformation is appropriate to his type, and he rises up to join the Monstrous ranks.
| Creatures with multiple Minds may end up with only some of them converted, acting like a Creation with opposing Operators (8.6: Manning Guns), and delaying any physical transformation that may accompany the full conversion.
If players decide that larger Creatures are also vulnerable to the Contagious Bite, treat the Poison as if it were doing points of mental Size Damage (7.2: Taking Damage). The Creature's Mind is converted only when the mental Size Damage equals or exceeds the Creature's Effective Size.
Even if their masters are evil geniuses, the converted victims of Monstrous Contagion tend to be mindless and confused. The victims' Skill and Specialties prior to transformation are forgotten, and they are reborn with an Incompetent Skill of 1d4 and all the Stupidity that goes with it (10.1: Minds).
Depending on the fictional justification for the contagion, a skilled Medik working on a subdued victim may be able to reverse the effects as part of standard Ker-Triage! operation. This is up to the players.
Since before the first stirrings of minifig life, the BrikVerse has been the target of jealous invaders from knockoff dimensions. Luckily, despite their cheap and disposable hordes, the invading forces were too crappy to make any inroads against the ever-vigilant Legit-Eye Knights - until the rise of the Nega-BlokTrix.
In BR 2,002, BrikVerse civilization was ripped apart, never to recover, thanks to a nightmare known only as the Gray Shift. A tiny number of standard brick colors underwent very slight changes to become nearly-identical versions of the exact same colors. Naturally, Humans and minifigs alike completely lost their minds, and the Legit-Eye Council turned its attention to purging color impurities rather than watching for invaders.
It was in this moment of weakness that the Nega-BlokTrix struck, uniting the counterfeit dimensions under the sub-standard of the CLOan brand, and leading the invasion at the head of a legion of single-purpose-molded POOP Dragons.
The BrikVerse was defeated utterly and laid to waste, and when the Deadly Spacemen arrived to destroy the BR 2,002 timeline, they found only
corruption and trash. Subsequent BrikVerses remained infected with the Nega stain, as the once-pure race of Yellow minifigs found themselves horrified by growing populations of Peaches.
Cynics will try to tell you that battles are made up of finite quantities of troops and equipment. Fans of video games, war movies, and comics know better. No matter how many oppoinents you slay, there are always more entering one-by-one from the right side of the screen, ready to turn upside-down and disappear in an orderly fashion as soon as they're defeated.
Cannon Fodder: Skill:1d6 Move: 5" Armor: 0 Cost: 2CP Mook Weapon: Use:3 Range:CC or 5" Damage: 1
Certain minifigs exist only to inflate the kill count and scatter their own corpses around as set decoration. If these Cannon Fodder make any contribution at all during the course of getting themselves slaughtered, it's to serve as distractions and draw fire away from their allies who actually matter.
Cannon Fodder come equipped with a single melee or ranged hand weapon at no cost. This Mook Weapon (along with any other weapon carried or operated by a Cannon Fodder unit) does only one point of Damage and is mostly useless. This is enough to kill other Cannon Fodder, thanks to their zero Armor - even a minor hit kills a Cannon Fodder unit automatically, without even bothering to roll Damage. Otherwise, Cannon Fodder must rely on Combined Fire with real units or other Cannon Fodder in order for their single point to make any difference.
Like Vermin, Cannon Fodder (along with Vehicles or devices operated by Cannon Fodder) have zero Momentum Dice, zero Physical Opposition, zero throwing ability, and can Shove for a grand total of zero inches. Cannon Fodder can lift, carry, and construct objects as normal.
Spawner: Cost:WSx2CP Spawn Capacity:WS"
Although Cannon Fodder are mostly useless, the nice thing about them is that there's an endless supply. They may emerge from an interdimensional portal, cave entrance, or guardhouse, or they might be summoned in by a magik amulet or the powers of an otherworldly Fiend. The physical objects used as Spawners are treated as a type of weapon, subject to the usual Weapon Size limitations, but they function automatically - no Skill Roll or Action is required.
The Size of a Spawner (or Effective Size, for a damaged Spawner) determines the maximum Size of the group of units it can Spawn every turn. This Spawn Capacity can be a simple number of inches or a dice equivalent, depending on the variability of the Spawner's output - a Spawn Capacity of 4" is equivalent to a Spawn Capacity of 1d6". Each turn, the Spawner can produce this many Size inches' worth of units, either respawned from fallen Cannon Fodder corpses (which conveniently disappear from the field and reappear at the Spawner, along with their Mook Weapon), or from units which were purchased before the battle but held in reserve rather than placed on the field immediately.
Spawned units appear as close to the Spawner as reasonably possible - either in, on, or touching the Spawner itself. Spawning uses up a spawned unit's Action for the turn, so unless they have extra ones (from Multitasking or a Heroic Feat, for instance), most units will appear with their full Movement but no Action.
Masters and Thralls
In the Fedoranuker's latest scheme to deprive the BrikVerse of moms and drive Warhead crazy, he has recruited legions of Mommy-Reliant Adolescents into his fraternal order of Fedophiles. This hat-based faction seeks to repel female minifigs from the BrikVerse by crying about misandry and pooping in their diapers (not necessarily in that order).
Despite the superheroic efforts of Gamma Rabbit and the rainbowist Social Justice Warriors, the Fedophiles have been almost entirely successful, erasing all but the most stubborn of women from history or driving them into the ranks of the diabaalvillain Fiends. In many sets and themes, minifigs have never seen a woman at all, and would be terrified to encounter one.
Some monsters are born leaders, holding sway over a horde of minions through mind control, charisma, or fear. The best among these enjoy the finest perks of monster leadership: the ability to permanently Sacrifice their devoted followers' life force for a fleeting minor bonus. Vampires have delicious slaves, BrikThulhuite kult leaders have kultists, and middle managers have interns. Any units may enjoy the special power exchange of Master and Thrall; the only requirement is that the Masters are complete jerks who view Thralls as an expendable resource.
Masters and Thralls
Master Specialty (+1CP): may Sacrifice Thralls
Thrall Specialty (+1CP): may die or RedShirt to Sacrifice themselves to a Master
As far as a Master is concerned, Thralls are walking poker chips waiting to be cashed in. The details vary - a nekromancer de-animates his skeletons, a Fiend swallows the souls of the possessed, and a secret agent makes out with femme and homme fatales. In the process, the Thrall is incapacitated - it may be disintegrated, killed outright, or merely rendered catatonic. Regardless of the method and its effect, the Sacrifice is instantaneous and permanent; Sacrificed Thralls can't be Medikally revived, respawned from Spawners, or brought back by any other means.
On the bright side, the Master receives an immediate Instant Benny equal to the Sacrificed Thrall's Skill die. Like all Instant Bennies, the Master must use the Benny before the end of his turn (or the end of his following turn, if the Sacrifice occurs on someone else's turn) or it will disappear.
Sacrifices do not cost an Action or take any time, even if logic would suggest otherwise. The special bond between Master and Thrall is such that all other action stops while they consummate their exchange. Masters can reap the benefits of Sacrifice even in the middle of other Actions or while distracted or unconscious.
There are three ways for a Sacrifice to occur. The most direct is for the Master to Sacrifice one or more Thralls himself. He must be able to touch each Thrall; the Sacrifice occurs automatically and cannot be prevented or interrupted except by a Heroic Feat. A Master may also inspire a Thrall to RedShirt as if he were a Hero; any Thrall killed in the process of RedShirting is automatically Sacrificed. Finally, a Thrall who is killed by any other means may be counted as a Sacrifice if its Master is within 1d6". (Thralls who are killed but not counted as a Sacrifice may be revived by the usual means.)
Depending on the type of Master and its SuperNatural abilities, some Masters are able to use Mind Dice to convert enemy minifigs into usable Sacrifices, either by rendering them unconscious and helpless to resist, or by using Mind Control to turn them into new temporary Thralls (D.2: SuperNatural Dice ). In either case, the Benny gained is based on the minifig's original Skill Rating, not on the value of the Mind Dice.
Not all monsters are living Creatures. Robots, zombies, and animated piles of bricks can be just as dangerous. With no need for air, friends, or retirement benefits packages, Non-Living Constructs can be an ideal addition to any force.
Non-Living and Undead
Unliving / Undead: (+0CP)
Most objects in BrikWars are not alive, and even the ones that are alive tend to remain that way only briefly. When a unit is Non-Living, it's just as vulnerable to standard Damage as any other object, but many kinds of environmental and biological damage have no effect. Suffocation, drowning, Poison, disease, and psychological manipulation are irrelevant to things that aren't alive. (These effects are up to the players, and can be decided by a What I Say Goes Roll whenever they're not obvious.)
The Undead have all the immunities of non-living objects, but their Anti-LifeForce means that many effects are reversed. Healing effects damage them, and death magik heals them. Blessings are treated as Curses, and vice versa. Different types of Undead traditionally have additional specific vulnerabilities, but sunlight, garlic, and holy crosses rarely appear in a BrikWars battle, and so they're largely ignored unless the players make a special point of incorporating them. Very few Masters receive any benefit from Sacrificing an Undead, unless they are specifically attuned to benefit from Anti-LifeForce rather than LifeForce.
Construct Specialty (+1CP per Connection Strength): replaces Armor; unit breaks into recombinable Modular Parts
Blokbots are a terrifying force of destruction born out of the amorphic nature of ABS itself. Led by strange kult figures and erupting in a dizzying variety of forms and capabilities, Blokbots spread across planets and star systems, seeking to
tear all opposition into bite-sized chunks for conversion into additional waves of Blokbots.
Resembling a minifig shape in only the clumsiest sense, a Blokbot has the uncanny ability to reanimate its own disassembled chunks into strange configurations when blown apart, along with other chunks of ABS picked up along the way. A Blokbot infestation must be contained and eliminated quickly if there's to be any hope of stopping it at all.
Usually (but not always) Non-Lliving, Constructs are Creatures made of Modular Parts that can be disassembled and put back together again with no lasting penalty, even if the Parts get mixed up in the process. This usually occurs when they take enough Damage to knock bits off, but they can also disassemble a Part from themselves (or allow others to disassemble a Part) as easily as picking up an unattached item of the same size. A dismembered arm can be swung as a makeshift bludgeon, heads can be thrown as projectiles, and any other random Parts can be swapped endlessly between Constructs for tactical or fashion advantages.
Even if a Construct is built from a large number of building elements, its Modular Parts are basic and discrete: heads, bodies, limbs, and any other useful appendages like wings or tentacles. (Tails only count as a Modular Part if they're mounted with a weapon or other device; otherwise they're considered part of the body.) Removing a Modular limb causes the same penalties as if the limb were Amputated (10.2: The Medik).
Constructs are defeated by knocking apart their Modular Parts rather than by killing them. To this end, Constructs have a Connection Strength rating rather than an Armor rating, up to the Size of the Construct. Any Damage equal to or greater than the Connection Strength breaks off a Modular Part of the defender's choice, within reach of the attacker. The detached Part is knocked one inch away for every die in the Damage roll. A Damage total that is multiple times the size of the Connection Strength will break off the corresponding number of multiple Modular Parts (for example, if an attacker dealt 7 Damage to a Creature with Connection Strength 2, the Creature would lose 3 Modular Parts).
Individual Modular Parts are rendered lifeless and inert if detached from a Construct. Units can build with these loose Construct parts just like any other building element (7.3: Field Construction). They return to full functionality if attached to other Construct parts, or if attached to compatible teknology by an appropriately-themed Mechanik (e.g., a sci-fi Mechanik attaching cyborg parts to a spaceship, a fantasy Mechanik attaching golem parts to an animated walking castle, etc.).
| There's no reason a Construct has to be reassembled "correctly," if the physical elements allow nonsensical alternate combinations. Sometimes you'll want to swap out a tail for an extra arm, or replace a missing leg with a stack of heads. The effects of these non-standard constructions should be decided by quick negotiations between the players, settled by a What I Say Goes Roll if necessary.
Unlike other Modular Parts, a Construct's detached head may remain alert and even capable of conversation if the players think it's funny enough.