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Torg Eternity: Building a Better Gospog – Tharkold

March 12, 2018

Next up in my series of takes on the cosm-specific gospog for Torg: Eternity is the doomed…

Tharkold

The original Torg Tharkold book states that the Tharkoldu (the cyber-demons that rule the world) don’t use gospog much because they prefer to eat, maim, or dismember the humans they kill, and thus can’t plant them. I think that’s a little short-sighted, though. As High Lord and as the supreme “alpha” being in the cosm’s pecking order, Kranod could easily force quotas on those beneath him, either a regular tribute in terms of living humans, or corpses suitable for planting. With those quotas in place he would be able to churn out mindless servitors that he could keep for himself to strengthen his own position, or hand off as gifts to trusted underlings. The gospog would, in some sense, justify the more wasteful practices of the Tharkoldu in regards to the humans – those that are killed can just be recycled into a different but still useful form.

One issue with gospog in this realm is that ghuls (human corpses animated by a high-tech “tongue” and fitted with cybernetics) are a mechanical version of the same concept. I suppose the technology that animates and enhances a ghul is a contradiction in lower-tech zones, so gospog are still useful for invasions of other realities. Also, the ghuls are not mindless, which makes them susceptible to interaction attacks and some psionics.

So what should Tharkold gospog look like? Having been born into such a violent reality, it seems like they would primarily be designed for war – the cannon fodder of their demon masters, whether they are raiding the Free Nations for more slaves or invading new worlds. A secondary purpose would be to give them some manifestation of the cosm’s world laws, in order to make them distinct from gospog of other cosms. I don’t think I copied anything from the Doom, Quake, or similar video games here – not consciously, anyway – but I definitely had that kind of setting in mind when I was thinking these gospog up.

2nd Planting

Soldier Zombie. Faster, tougher, and more proficient with firearms than the 1st planting, these gospog are equipped with discarded tech and serve as “elite” soldiers among the ranks of the lesser gospog. They are typically also outfitted with cheap chemical weapons, which they can deploy without worry of being affected themselves. Their Pain Conduit ability siphons the benefits of the Law of Pain back to the demon or thrall that has been placed in charge of the gospog, though obviously the ability doesn’t work in locations that are not subject to Tharkold’s World Laws.

Gospog (Tharkold 2nd Planting)
Attributes: Charisma 5, Dexterity 9, Mind 7, Spirit 7, Strength 9
Skills: Dodge 11, Find 9, Fire Combat 12, Maneuver 10, Missile Weapons 10, Stealth 10, Unarmed Combat 11
Move: 9 (27); Tough: 12 (3); Shock: -; Wounds: –
Equipment: AK-47 (Damage 14, Ammo 30, Range 40/80/160, Long Burst, Two Handed), Stab Vest (Tough +3, Max Dex 10, Torso), Tear Gas Grenade (Damage see below, Ammo 1, Range 10/20/30, Medium Blast)
Special Abilities:

  • Bite/Claws: Damage Strength +2 (11).
  • Fear: Willpower test or Very Stymied.
  • Mindless: Immune Intimidation, Taunt, Telepathy, mind effects.
  • Pain Conduit: When operating under Tharkold’s World Laws, the gospog’s dominant master recovers Shock as if it had inflicted any Wounds that are inflicted by the gospog.
  • Relentless: Ignores Shock damage, Fatigue.
  • Tear Gas: Targets with unprotected eyes within the blast test Strength or suffer 1 Shock and a -2 penalty to all skill tests. The targets must keep testing each round until 1 minute has passed, and the penalties stack (to a maximum of -6). Measures can be taken to mitigate the effects; these take at least 1 action and provide a +2 bonus to the Strength test.
  • Undead: Immune breathing, eating, Fatigue, etc. Supernatural Evil.

3rd Planting

Chemical Weapons Zombie. The body of the 3rd planting gospog randomly bloats and distends with the occult-chemical reactions taking place within. The flesh, bone, and plant matter that make up its face are shaped in a way that looks like a gas mask, but it is entirely organic. Nozzle-shaped protrusions of bone jut from the ends of both arms – it has no hands – from which it can shoot forth the products of its internal reactions. This gospog comes in several different varieties – some shoot jets of flame from its arms, some clouds of nerve gas, and others can fire explosive grenades. The nerve gas can be inhaled or absorbed through the skin, so a gas mask is not enough to ward off its effects.

Gospog (Tharkold 3rd Planting)
Attributes: Charisma 5, Dexterity 8, Mind 7, Spirit 10, Strength 9
Skills: Conjuration 14, Dodge 11, Find 10, Intimidation 12, Maneuver 10, Stealth 9, Trick (8), Unarmed Combat 10
Move: 8 (24); Tough: 10 (1); Shock: -; Wounds: –
Equipment: Fireproof Suit (Tough +1, +5 Armor vs. fire)
Special Abilities:

  • Conjured Chemicals: The gospog uses Conjuration to attack and explodes on a Mishap. Choose one:
    • Flamethrowers: Damage 16, Range 20/25/30, Fire, Small Blast
    • Grenades: Damage 16, Range 50/100/200, Medium Blast
    • Nerve Gas: Each round for 1 minute or until cured, target takes 2 Shock and must test Strength or be stunned for 1 round; if KO’d by gas must test for defeat, Range 5/10/15, Small Blast
  • Explosion: When the gospog suffers a Mishap on an attack roll or is destroyed by Wounds, it explodes. All targets in a Small or Medium Blast (as appropriate for the gospog’s weapon) centered on the gospog suffer the effects of the weapon + 1 BD (for those that deal damage).
  • Fear: Willpower test or Very Stymied.
  • Mindless: Immune Intimidation, Taunt, Telepathy, mind effects.
  • Pain Conduit: When operating under Tharkold’s World Laws, the gospog’s dominant master recovers Shock as if it had inflicted any Wounds that are inflicted by the gospog.
  • Relentless: Ignores Shock damage, Fatigue.
  • Undead: Immune breathing, eating, Fatigue, etc. Supernatural Evil.

4th Planting

Tank Zombie. This giant appears to be made out of human corpses twisted and fused together, with black vines, roots, and moss serving as the mortar that binds the bodies together. As it moves and fights, the corpses scream in unholy terror. Metal plates have been seared into the flesh of the monster’s body using occult practices, in order to make it nearly impervious to harm. This gospog strides across the battlefield, weathering artillery and small arms fire in order to break up enemy emplacements or to screen for more vulnerable troops.

Gospog (Tharkold 4th Planting)
Attributes: Charisma 5, Dexterity 8, Mind 7, Spirit 8, Strength 14
Skills: Dodge 9, Energy Weapons 13, Find 9, Intimidation 13, Maneuver 9, Missile Weapons 11, (Reality 9), Trick (9), Unarmed Combat 13
Move: 8 (24); Tough: 18 (4); Shock: -; Wounds: 2
Equipment: Alph Pulverizer (Damage 17, Ammo 3, Range 20/40/80, Painful), Zan Slashers (Strength +2/16)
Possibilities: Sometimes (3)
Special Abilities:

  • Armor: Occultech Plating +4.
  • Dread: Scene is always Dramatic when present.
  • Fear (-4): Willpower test with -4 penalty or Very Stymied.
  • Large: +2 to be hit.
  • Mindless: Immune Intimidation, Taunt, Telepathy, mind effects.
  • Pain Conduit: When operating under Tharkold’s World Laws, the gospog’s dominant master recovers Shock as if it had inflicted any Wounds that are inflicted by the gospog.
  • Relentless: Ignores Shock damage, Fatigue.
  • Undead: Immune breathing, eating, Fatigue, etc. Supernatural Evil.

5th Planting

Akira Zombie. The final gospog from Tharkold is unusual in that it doesn’t look much like a weapon of war. Instead it takes the shape of the contorted corpse of a small child, covered in a network of pulsing plant tendrils, with an oversized, exposed brain. It floats in the air by virtue of its powerful and barely contained psionic abilities. In battle, it drifts behind lesser gospog or thralls, lashing out indiscriminately at any apparent foes with its mental might. The telekinetic barrier power means that the gospog will probably have higher defenses than usual. Furthermore, the Multi-Tasker perk allows it to use two powers in the same round, and Overcharge provides the opportunity to really cut loose at the cost of the creature’s health.

Gospog (Tharkold 5th Planting)
Attributes: Charisma 9, Dexterity 8, Mind 9, Spirit 12, Strength 7
Skills: Dodge 12, Find 12, Kinesis 17, Maneuver 9, Reality 15, Stealth 11, Telepathy 15, Trick (12), Unarmed Combat 10
Move: 8 (24); Tough: 7; Shock: -; Wounds: 3
Perks: Multi-Tasker (Can use 2 different PsiPowers as part of Multi-Action), Overcharge (Can add d20 to psionic skill test, take Wound after resolution), Psionic (Confusion, Pyrokinesis, Mind Blast, Mind Sense, Strangle, Telekinesis, Telekinetic Barrier)
Possibilities: 5
Special Abilities:

  • Dread: Scene is always Dramatic when present.
  • Fear: Willpower test or Very Stymied.
  • Flight: Move 8 in the air
  • Mindless: Immune Intimidation, Taunt, Telepathy, mind effects.
  • Pain Conduit: When operating under Tharkold’s World Laws, the gospog’s dominant master recovers Shock as if it had inflicted any Wounds that are inflicted by the gospog.
  • Relentless: Ignores Shock damage, Fatigue.
  • Small: -2 to be hit.
  • Undead: Immune breathing, eating, Fatigue, etc. Supernatural Evil.
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