Have a COW (Creature of the Week) #13: Dread Harvesters

A few weeks ago, I provided a bit more about the Dread — the big baddies in the Aliens & Asteroids universe. We talked about Brutes and Hollows.

Design Thoughts

Unlike the creatures of Alien, I wanted to give the Dread a bit more of an “infestation” aspect. Sure, the classic Alien had eggs and face-huggers to spread the species, but I thought these creatures should have more of an adaptable nature. To handle this, I created the Queen, who creates the main fighting force of Brutes and Soldiers; and the Harvester who takes the life forms on a particular world and drains them of their life essence.

I envision the Harvester as a bit of a mosquito, with a proboscis it uses to suck the life out of a victim and the ability to lay a “battery” of sorts behind it to store that energy. The Hollows are then zombified and part of the hive, used to protect the batteries and the Harvester. This means that every world would have a slightly different type of Hollow, depending on the life forms available. Then, when there are enough batteries, the hive can call in the Monarch to drain the planet dry.

Creature – Dread Harvesters

  • Dread Harvester (High-level): Attribute 14, AR3/AP15, HP 28, Traits: Legged (10m), Bite (d6), Claws (1d6), Acid Blood (sprays acid blood when cut, d6+2 damage, 2 points ongoing each round until removed), Hivemind, Grab (immobilize victim temporarily, Athletics check to break free. Immobilized creatures grant Advantage on incoming attacks), Tough Hide (AR2), Tough Bastard (2x HP), Plated Armor (AR3/AP15), Tactics (can trade their action to give an ally an extra move or attack), Drain (turns Grabbed victim into a Hollow in d6 turns)

Possible Enhancements

If that’s not nasty enough, with a group of Hollows and Brutes or Soldiers protecting it, you can also add:

  • Mutate (grants a Hollow a mutation such as those described in the book on page 87 of the main A&A book)
  • Regenerating Armor AP1
  • Regenerating Health HP1
  • Superior Combat Armor (AR5/AP25)

These creatures typically hide while they create their energy stores for the Monarch to consume, but I think they’d be formidable enemies with enough time to create an army of customized Hollows…

Looking for more creatures for your Aliens & Asteroids campaign? Check out the rest of the Creature of the Week series!

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