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alderwitch

The Graleen Notes

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Consolidating my notes on the graleen and making them available before I try to bang out a guidebook entry. 

 

The Graleen

 

Synopsis

The graleen are uniform in their intentions and those intentions allow for only annihilation or subjugation of those who are not graleen. Terrans might describe them as insectoid as their forms have superficial similarities to hymenoptera from earth. There are many slurs for 'the bugs', as the standard galactic response to a graleen infestation is a swift and certain extermination before their colonies can spread. They are voracious in their intentions to expand and respect no treaties and no laws other than their own. It would be easier to deal with any threat posed if they were mindless but the hive mind of the graleen is driven by a fierce, malevolent intelligence. 

 

GM Notes

The graleen are freely available for go to antagonists in space adventures. For analogs in existing fiction, see the tyranids of the Warhammer 40K series, or reapers from Mass Effect in their behavior, or even echoes of the Borg from Star Trek. They have no sense of individuality, but instead are a networked hive intelligence. There is no 'I', only 'we'. Necessarily, any PCs from the graleen would have to be mutations of one stripe or another, separate from the malevolent group conscious that drives the urges to expand and conquer. 

 

Need to create template NPCs for various levels:

  • Scouts: small sub-groups of colonies sent out to scout potential worlds for harvest by the species. 
  • Drones: henchmen sorts, for dealing with masses of them at a time
  • Workers: larger scale threats, akin to bosses directing drones
  • Warriors: big threats, designed for a group to deal with a single warrior
  • Thralls: non-graleen species that have been psychically enthralled 

 

Also need to flesh out ones that are more focused on honing/using their psychic abilities rather than physical ones. Don't have a good name for those yet.

 

Biology

The chitinous plating of the graleen isn't a true exoskeleton although it has been mistaken for such in the past. The graleen have, in fact, an endoskeleton although it is lighter and thinner than their terran equivalents. Due to the peculiarities of their species, there is a wide variety in appearance depending on the role the graleen has in the colony. Scouts, for example, are typically sleek and smaller than the drones, with fully functional wings. Warriors are much more massive, with far thicker plating and only vestigial wing nubs. They are humanoid in size, standing on two legs, with four limbs ending in three fingered hands, capable of fine manipulation. They may or may not have a stinger in their tail which, to be honest, is more akin to a scorpion than a wasp in its make up. Their face is also humanoid, although rounder and flatter than any actual terran, with large compound eyes and antenna sprouting from their brow and a mouth full of very, very sharp teeth. They are entirely carnivorous as a species, although its entirely possible for one to survive on synthesized rations, provided they had the correct proteins. 

 

 

 

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