Biowolf

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Pets of Godville
Biowolf
Biowolf-pack-materialising.jpg
Class: Lupine (multiphasic)
Natural Habitat: Anywhere prey is found; especially common near boundaries and borders
Description: Predatory canines capable of phasing in and out of existence
Tameable at levels: 30–44
Biowolf.jpg

The Biowolf (Canus mutata "changing wolf") is a tamable monster. "Not quite of this world" is a phrase often applied to any spacy, concussed or drunken Hero, but it's most appropriate of all when used to describe a Biowolf.

These semi-intelligent creatures hover on the borders and boundaries of existence, phasing in and out of reality at will. Even when visible and solid to the touch, they may not be entirely part of the material plane.

Appearance

Biowolf materialising by moonlight.

Biowolves, when fully materialised, resemble large wolves with eerie eyes sometimes said to glow white or yellow. However, they are rarely seen fully materialised at first.

When stalking or lying in wait for prey, a Biowolf will remain mostly phased out, looking like a tangled, wavering outline at most. They will often hide inside solid objects or partly underground, so searching the undergrowth at normal eye height for a wolf is pretty much guaranteed to fail.

When a Biowolf begins to materialise, it looks like a semi-visible tangle of vines or wires. The semi-phased form is green and blotchy, and while wolf-shaped, is full of holes and gaps. This makes it very hard to see and a Biowolf will often creep closer to its prey in this form, probably because it can see better like this than it can when completely out of phase.

Solidifying gradually, the camouflaged body gains bulk, solidity and recognisably wolf-like features, until it is a fully visible grey or black wolf. At which point it is probably already biting you.

Historical mentions

Historic engraving depicting a fight with a Biowolf.

Ancient bestiaries and travel journals make occasional reference to "a Beaste of Dis-Placement, or Bower Wolfe, that doth appeare in Wrath greene and halfe-seene". Bower Wolfe, referring to the monster's camouflage-like colouring while phasing, is probably the source of the modern name Biowolf.

Historically, the Bower Wolfe was believed to guard particular mysterious or sacred places, unleashing ferocious revenge on anyone who approached. There seems to be no evidence of this in modern Biowolves, which have been observed to move territories in a normal fashion to follow prey or in response to disputes with other packs. The legends of guardianship are generally assumed to be false and brought about because Biowolves are most commonly found in places that form natural or mystic boundaries.

Taming a Biowolf

A Hero and helpers bind a Biowolf to the material plane and attempt to tame it.

This is no easy task. An injured Biowolf is less able to control its phase-shifting abilities and may fade into and out of reality at random. Taming the creature requires the use of a suitable rope to anchor it firmly to the material plane.

Once bound or tethered, the Biowolf, likely already in pain from fighting, will become extremely snappish. Long days of coaxing, healing and bribing it with food are necessary before a Biowolf will consent to be kept as a pet. Even then, it will never be tame so much as behaving itself because it feels like it.

A Biowolf, like most of society, is only three missed meals away from revolution.

Benefits of Biowolves as pets

A properly socialised Biowolf has many of the traits and helpful habits of a dog, with the added ability to become invisible and move through solid objects. They are capable of showing great ferocity with teeth and tyre irons in defense of their designated human food source.

Biowolf owners have frequently noticed their pets carrying items they didn't have before. These may have been sniffed out, dug up or stolen from traders; sometimes it's best not to ask. Trying to make the animal give up its new-found chew toy is not always easy, since a Biowolf is often inclined to be possessive.

Attributes

Biowolf using its phasing power to erupt from underground, grabbing and phasing its victim to pull him down. Or begging for treats. Hard to tell. We are talking about canids, after all.

Strengths:

  • Its phasing abilities are a Biowolf's greatest advantage, being too cool and awesome to be readily understood by a Hero and thus generally coming as a complete surprise every time:
    • Able to strike from ambush, even from underground or inside a rock face
    • Can drag enemies into solid ground to trap them
    • Has a limited ability to phase through blows, sometimes avoiding them completely
  • A pack animal, making reinforcements a possibility
  • Very big teeth
  • Breathes fire
  • Generates high voltage discharges of static electricity
  • Can act as furniture, if properly socialized.

Weaknesses:

  • A stubborn and aggressive streak means the Biowolf will not often use its abilities to flee a fight. This makes it easier to achieve a clean kill for XP and treasure
  • Tend to chase sticks or stick-like objects if thrown
  • A phasic weapon or skill will disrupt the animal's phasing abilities, as will binding it with the appropriate rope (available from Tradeburg at discounted prices! Tell your friends!)