Welcome to the Flaming Faggot

Callovia is called "the boundless empire" yet you have managed to find its northern border - a notorious roadhouse deep within the Madrasan Marches on the edge of the wilds of Llanvirnesse. The sign above the door reads "Flaming Faggot," which would suggest a cozy, homey inn with fresh biscuits served at teatime if not for the severed troll heads mounted on pikes at the gate.

As you cross the threshold the raucous din quiets momentarily as all eyes dart to the door and calloused hands drop instinctively to well-worn sword hilts. The threat, instantly assessed, is dismissed and roadhouse patrons go about their business hardly missing a beat.

Grim, hard-eyed men huddle around tables in close conversation thick with conspiracy; caravan guards gamble away their earnings; Caemric rangers sit close to the fireplace cooking the damp of the Black Annis from their clothes as they warm their innards with Red Dragon Ale; minstrels play and buxom wenches dance for the pleasure of men who pay them little attention - until they need a companion to warm their bed.

As you approach the bar, a huge, bald barman with a greatsword slung across his back slides a mug of freshly-pulled ale towards you, its frothy head dripping over the rim.

"Pull up a seat, lad," he says, "and let me tell you a tale of high adventure."

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Bestiary of Lemuria: Clockwork Scorpions

Relics of ages long past, clockwork scorpions are deadly mechanical constructs that were once a much-feared assassination tool employed in the internecine struggle for dominance between Atlantean warlords.  The few surviving models that are still active are mostly found guarding the tombs and treasure troves of Atlantean lords, but time has not diminished their lethal sting, which delivers a fatal dose of neuro-toxin that can kill a grown man in seconds.

Almost impossible to detect until they activate, clockwork scorpions are fiendishly fast and resilient to damage thanks to their bronze carapace.  Often the first sign of their presence is the death cry of a dying tomb-raider.

Clockwork Scorpion
Armour Class: 2              Special: Sting             Morale: N/A
Hit Dice: 1                       Move: 12                   Alignment: Neutral
Attack: Pincers (1d3)      HDE/XP: 3/60          

The clockwork scorpion's sting, located at the tip of its flexible tail, contains a single dose of lethal venom.  The sting, itself, does no damage, but anyone hit by it must save vs. poison or die.

I created the clockwork scorpion several months ago while trying to come up with a striking paint scheme for this pair of Reaper scorpions I had recently bought.  I'd tried several realistic colour schemes but since scorpions tend to be well-camouflaged, the results were pretty drab.  The idea for a mechanical scorpion was inspired by a scene in Dune, shortly after the Atreides arrive on Arrakis and Paul snatches and destroys the mechanical assassin in his bed chamber.  Thus was born the bronze and verdigris colour scheme and a new creature for Lemuria.

Amusingly, an almost identical creature, the clockwork cobra, is described in Greg Gillespie's Barrowmaze, which just goes to show that great minds think alike.  Or that there is no such thing as a new idea, but I rather prefer the former explanation.


Trey said...

Cool. I had thought about a similar thing myself (clockwork spiders) but never got around to doing it.

Matt said...

Dude, I LOVE those minis!

Sean Robson said...

Thanks, guys. Trey, I think clockwork spiders would be really cool and would work well in a Weird Adventures setting.

Bard said...

Those minis really do look great!

kiltedyaksman said...

Love these!

They would be a wonderful addition to Barrowmaze II, unless you have other plans for them.

Sean Robson said...

Not at all! Feel free to use them.