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A barren, frozen planet. A pristine icefield, burnished and cleared by constant katabatic gales. Graven in elegant Old High Martian glyphs a meter deep in the never-thawing ice, a mathematical proof of such beauty and elegance as to make a genius weep...and a series of universal planetary coordinates. No advanced species could forbear to investigate further!
These are the work of the Neh-Thalggu, more commonly known as the Braincrabs. Know them. Fear them. Do not trust them.
Rugose and four-limbed, the first instar is little more than a brain-shaped crustacean beast. (Little Nolzur's Intellect Devourers, came with the Alhoon or Illithilich.) They are shed when the parent has a surfeit of brains and wishes to jettison lesser ones to make room for greater.
Most perish, being less clever than their prey. But if one can bring down a sentient creature through luck and stealth and devour its central ganglion or brain...it begins to grow, absorbing the knowledge and cunning of its prey, much as some sea slugs repurpose the stinging cells of their prey and make them their own.
After absorbing a few brains, the instar grows into a juvenile. This involves generating more frontal eyes and a pair of brutal skull-cracking pincers. Recently-added brains are sequestered into thin-shelled bubbles, an adaptation to make sure other, stronger Braincrabs do not kill them when marauding.
The juveniles are very dangerous, acting as psionic predators with the strength of a tiger and the intelligence of three or four sentient creatures, all brought to bear on the problem of obtaining more brains. Depending on its previous history, it is very likely to outwit the average sentient being.
A Braincrab that has assimilated more than eight brains again metamorphoses, this time into a mountainous, many-limbed hulk, a spiny rugose colossus with a first-class think tank worth of neural tissue working for it. Psionic power abounds, and the elder Braincrab can create immersive illusions at-will or psychically dominate lesser wills.
The really unpleasant bit is the way it will out-argue you and succeed. It can make an excellent claim to being a Utility Monster, better at experiencing both reality and pleasure in the cosmos than us single-brained chumps. And what gives it the most pleasure, on the level you and I could never experience? (for so it claims, and has data to back it up--is the data faked? if so, it's too good for us to be able to tell!)? Why, devouring and assimilating more sentient brains! Do you have inconvenient brains in your society? Antisocial or sociopathic ones? It can redirect those energies! Oh, it's a persuasive monstrosity!
The Martians fear and detest them, of course, having as they do great juicy brains practically dripping psionic energy.
But hunting something that is hunting you, while your strongest weapon is their favorite prey--it's not easy!
A Martian High Intelligencer can outwit all but the eldest Braincrabs, but the gamble is a perilous one indeed. You do NOT want a braincrab with the powers of a High Intelligencer. That's how you get a planet converted to a brain farm, which in turn leads to Great Old Ones. Not even once!
Oddly, the best defense against the Braincrab is a hive of the insectoid Mandibulate Commonweal. One has the intelligence of a beast, two of a slightly smarter beast, five of an average human...and a whole hive can rival a supercomputer. Their individual brains are not worth a Braincrab's attention, and yet the hivemind can outmaneuver it intellectually as easily as the workers can swarm and savage it physically.
The Commonweal will not gain knowledge from the reclaimed brains, though. Only nourishment.
Below, how to make a juvenile Braincrab.
Bombshell miniatures Sister Sergeant Maelee (aka "Heresy" Maelee) is all primed up and ready for color. This is their Con Exclusive version of Maelee, released at ReaperCon. "Heresy" is from some gatekeeping twit on Instagram who declared "This figure is Heresy!". It made me laugh so, that's my nickname for her.
We are very excited to be able to come back and participate at ReaperCon again this year!
There are a ton of new releases that will be in-stock at the show and a couple of other special items.
Bombshell Miniatures presents the 2021 Golden Maelee Award. This is a Sponsored Award section of the annual Reaper Master Series Open Painting Contest. All entries will be awarded a Gold, Silver, or Bronze Bombshell Dog Tag depending on the level of painting and presentation of each entry. The brand new, larger, Golden Maelee trophies will be awarded to the top three paint jobs (Gold, Silver, and Bronze) depending on the number of entries.
Entries will need to feature at least one or more Bombshell Miniatures as the prominent subject. This can be anything from Babes, Sidekicks, KritterKins, to robots, or busts. Each entry will be judged on its own merit of painting execution, presentation, and skill.
Entries from artists who have been professionally commissioned by Bombshell Miniatures are ineligible for the Golden Maelee Trophy at this time, they may still receive Dog Tag awards.
We have some new ribbons. Come by our booth and receive our Bombshell ribbon for your visit.
You may receive one of the other themed ribbons depending on your purchase.
THE RESIN VAT
This year we will be offering seconds and mis-cast resin parts for sale by weight. Just scoop out what you want and we'll weigh it at check-out.
Although these castings didn't pass muster, you may find a gem that is just right for that conversion or terrain project down the line.
COUNTERBLAST FOR SAVAGE WORLDS
Over the past year we have been working on creating a setting book of our Counterblast game for the Savage Worlds RPG.
Come by our booth and get the details to sit in on a couple of impromptu RPG preview sessions during the con.
There may even be freebies involved!
We are super excited to visit with all of you again and we're looking forward to see what you've been painting!
Patrick & Vicky
It would be nice to think about cyberpunk utopias, but somehow those just don't grip the popular imagination. Instead it's always overcast or raining, the sky is brocced, corporations own everything and everyone and surveillance is ubiquitous. There's money to be had, but barely enough to buy noodles unless you're connected...or willing to ignore corporate law.
Devo Ranks eats the *fancy* noodles every day. They have Skillz.
Click for more angles.
Hacking into a Public Service Panopticon? CHILD'S PLAY.
If you need muscle? Devo Knows A Guy. Or lady, really.
Don't worry, Dez! Those cameras are showing nothing but innocuous looped footage now.
No one pays the cleaners enough in the cyberpunk dystopian future.
I won't pretend to understand what kind of cyber-heist these three are conducting.
But you can be sure they have made Powerful Enemies, as well as enough credits to afford the FANCY noodles for the rest of the year!
Devo is a fun one. Gender-ambiguous and tech-savvy. Because cyberpunk is inextricable from the late 80s and early 90s, I gave Devo the most day-glo Nickelodeon counterculture wardrobe I could think of. Dez from Bombshell we have seen before, in the post-apocalyptic Radlands, as well as the little sniper from Crooked Dice.
The Public Service Panopticonnouncer was made from SD card placeholders and chunks of expired credit card, along with I think a vape component. The text, like much of the signage on the building, comes from a beer can label artfully chopped into pieces and rearranged into vaguely menacing advertisements. Also some sprue and all the camera-looking Bitz and Gunz in my Bitz Box.
I don't have any cyberpunk setting or games planned, but I can feel the itch growing. C&C welcome.