Проект, посвящённый Нагам Хуреша
Я как-то хотел перевести этот замечательный проект, но потом понял, что не осилю, потому просто поделюсь ссылками.
Суть проекта в детальном описании и визуализации расы Наг Хуреша. Один из авторов рисовал фан-арт для Катая. Авторы периодически выпускают новые арты и их описании. Если эта расы не будет реализована силами СА, то будем надеяться на то, что за их создание возьмутся фанаты.
Blood Naga Queen
Once majestic serpents, the Naga’s pact with Chaos during the great daemonic incursions has corrupted their sinuous forms into living nightmares. Now the four-armed Blood Naga Queens bear vaguely humanoid features that only make their visages all the more disturbing: Long unkempt dark hair encrusted with gore and ornamented with gruesome talismans or gaudy crowns, falling across leering faces with insane bloodshot eyes. Large snaggletooth fangs dripping with venom, emerge from mouths fixed in a perpetual rictus grin.
The Naga Queens’ appetite for blood is notorious, seemingly a defect inherent in their creation by the Old Ones, exacerbated by their exposure to the Ruinous Powers and the Warpstone used in their research. The Naga keep vault upon vault of flesh larders within their temple-laboratories, culled from the remains of myriad test subjects imprisoned in sprawling pens or taken in meticulously scheduled hunts. Their grim reputation has reached even the faraway cities of Men in the Old World, where the thirst of the Vampire Bloodlines pale in comparison.
Innately gifted in magic, the eldest Naga Queens learnt spellcasting from the Slann in their earliest days and have since augmented their knowledge with that gained from the Realm of Chaos and through their own vile experiments. The Blood Naga Queens are now masters of forbidding primordial lore and perverse alchemy. They are skilled in the making of curses, elixirs and strange effigies — hidden in trees and crossroads throughout Khuresh — that allow them to appear suddenly from the gloom to ambush chosen prey, hundreds of miles away from their previous location. They are wont to transmogrify their own bodies, grafting extra limbs, eyes, nails, stinging tails and wings depending on their current aims or disposition, while some have grown into the size of sea serpents.
The Naga Queens can control the weather through gruesome rituals, deluging their foes in oily torrential rain, withering them with drought or concealing their armies in dense fog. Their experimentation on the corrupted geomantic web of Khuresh has borne baleful fruit. Murmurs resonate sporadically from the ruined towers of the Old Ones, triggering bizarre phenomena and driving the inhabitants of the hinterlands to wild rutting or frenetic bloodshed. When a Storm of Magic descends on Khuresh this wave of insanity emanates outward across the continent, invading the dreams of mortals with disquieting visions of past and present slaughter, and luring the weak-willed to the jungles.
The Blood Naga wield undulating ritual kris blades and dha swords in battle while also fielding an array of powerful Dhar magic items, including the Brain-tapper Staff and the Liquidator Canister. One infamous object is the hourglass-shaped Ulgu-harnessing White Sistrum, which serves to magically echo the hinterlands’ madness wherever it goes, bearing only a tiny measure of the true horror that is the Snake Men civilization. Arhunt Suryasurash, eldest of the Blood Naga Queens, relishes in sending such blighted artifacts out into the world through her agents to sow misery.
The Blood Naga have no use for traditional forms of currency. Instead they barter with vials of rare and magic-infused blood specimens, newly crafted artifacts, mutated creatures for their war menagerie, and extracted souls imprisoned in intricately crafted containers.
They can often be found riding atop the grisly Crucibles of Manifestations into battle. As much sacrificial altar as it is a field operating slab, these wheeled juggernauts of stone, metal and wood are festooned with banners, blood-vines, thick ropes of ensorcelled dead hair, skeletal limbs and squirming still-living tissue. Strange mutant insects crawl around the contraption, adjusting and tending to the noxious apparatus. These altars serve as mystic loci on the battlefield, allowing the Blood Naga to more easily channel the Winds of Magic and conduct rites unimpeded above the chaotic masses.
Others go into battle atop the massive horned Sawanak Feynaga, clinging to harnesses strapped across the length of the monsters and preventing the monsters from completely burrowing into the ground. These Naga Queens enjoy such mounts for their ability to crash into the ranks of the enemy with abandon, where the Naga can delight in the ensuing explosion of bodies.
Pannaga Kobra Ssamdek
Высшая каста кобр. Составляют элиту, составляющую военачальников, магов и т. д.
These Lords among the Snake Men are supremely dexterous and capable of wielding three or four deadly weapons simultaneously, all coated in venom lethal enough to kill with a scratch. Long millennia of combat and supernatural balance have given the Pannaga a fighting style that is mystifying in its coordination: ensorcelled great crescent-shaped Warpstone axes or mak halberds are swung in tandem with parang blades or the kris and karambit daggers.
It is not uncommon to see these leaders effortlessly engaging multiple opponents at once, butchering those who manage to break through the longer reach of their polearms with their shorter blades, before feasting on the resulting gore. The Naja Chieftains are possibly even deadlier combatants, for they also exhibit the venom-spitting ability of the Naja caste.
Faced with a particularly strong foe or prey they would rather capture, the Kobra Ssamdek will weaken the target with a hypnotizing gaze and hissing reverberation. This tends to reduce the Chieftains’ combat awareness and distracts them from leading their forces, so they tend to employ hypnotism at the closing stages of a battle or when their victim is isolated. Those especially vexing to the Kobra Ssamdek may find themselves constricted with muscular tails and subjected to a slow asphyxiating death of pulped organs, burst eyes and crushed bone.
When not slithering into battle, the Kobra Chieftains can be found commanding their hosts from atop one of the Ratha chariots pulled by the devolved Uraga Lizardmen or atop the hulking Makor. Some ancient and accomplished leaders have even been known to fly atop the arcane Vimanaga arks, dictating the flow of battle at bird’s-eye view while engaging airborne threats and opposing leaders.
Another curious trait of the Kobra Ssamdeks is their unconscious ability to absorb magical energies that permeate the environment into their bodies, taking on traits associated with the Winds of Magic as the ages pass. Laturedano, the commanding Pannaga General of the Ebon Stone marga from warpstone-saturated southern Khuresh, has been infused with enough Dhar that his scales have turned a shiny coal-black interspersed with nacreous hues, while his necrotic venom causes wounds that cannot be healed with magic and imbue horrific mutations on his prey. Satra-King Taxsakil, Pannaga leader of the Amaranthine Lotus marga, is so suffused with the Red Wind of Aqshy that his red-hot scales smoke and crackle like embers, while his weapons spontaneously catch fire in combat and immolate enemies that make contact with them.
Khureshi Fang Thralls
The first encounters between Serpents and Men during the latter’s early migrations were highly unpleasant, as the Naga and Snake Men resented every younger race that followed their own creation by the Old Ones. They considered primitive Men particularly as teeming usurpers, as these bipedal creatures were one of the last intelligent beings to become civilized.
The only initial value that the Naga saw in mankind was that they comprised the most numerous of potential prey. As millennia passed the Serpents had come to understand the true worth of humanity as these bipeds were confronted with trial after trial across the world, rising to become the dominant sapient race in the present day, after the empires of the Elves and Dwarfs had entered their respective decline.
Mankind was resourceful and adaptable to hardship. Everywhere they were found, humans desired to understand and influence the environment around them, explaining phenomena through folklore and religion. Innate curiosity led to their development of advanced tools and skills independent of the elder races, which were then culturally passed down through successive generations. Even in Khuresh humanity had managed to eke out an existence in defiance of their plight by hunting the monsters that endangered them, herding what beasts they could tame, crafting their own armour and weapons and building terraced paddy farms on what habitable land they could lay claim to.
Humans were highly susceptible to the influences of Chaos, yet many were also compelled by some inner strength to struggle against the dominion of the Ruinous Powers. These qualities marked the race as simultaneously the most numerous opponents and servants of Chaos.
The serpent-Naga noted all of this and came to the conclusion that mankind were to be the perfect livestock and test subjects for their own purposes. Their capacity for self-expression, exchange of ideas, and organization on a mass scale also made them ideal fighting and labour thralls when properly indoctrinated.
During the Great Chaos Incursions the Naga and Snake Men sheltered the better part of their people, fabricating a mythology of mercurial but ultimately benevolent ophidian god-protectors who protected them in the darkest days. Nomadic hunter-gatherers, fishers or settled subsistence farmers, it mattered not to the Naga who came to weave legends that influenced the lives of the ancient Khureshi humans.
Unbeknownst to most of the Khureshi, the Naga kept and still keep the habitable areas of the Hinterlands fertile and unpolluted through primal Ghyran magic, not out of any sense of benevolence, but to ensure the stable supply of easily accessible prey and test subjects. More villages and human settlements than one would expect thus exist throughout the vast nightmarish expanse of Khuresh, and all are subjected to periodic hunts and raids on a measured scale. For the most part however, the serpent-Naga afford the local humans the illusion of autonomy.
The Blood Naga’s fearsome reputations also tend to keep most humans of other nations away from the jungle peninsula, so the Men of Khuresh have very scant contact with the outside world. These factors result in most Khureshi never seriously considering leaving their benighted homes. During times when the Storms of Magic blow strong, large numbers of refugees will sometimes depart from the Hinterlands under the auspices of one of the ruling Blood Naga Queens, and then only for their own nefarious intent and long prepared schemes.
The majority of human elders and shamans present within the human communities are direct or indirect collaborators of the Blood Naga, kept alive to instill lessons into their clans and villages that benefit the Snake Men and ensure obedience through fearful reverence. Open hunts by the Snake Men are rationalized away as deific retribution upon the transgressions of some convoluted taboo, or a seasonal force of nature that cannot be prevented. In the very rare event that an entire community rises in rebellion, the Blood Naga simply withdraw their protection of the humans from the wilder denizens of the jungles and allow the local Beastmen or monsters to run rampant within the settlements for a week or two.
Cults have sprung up among the human communities that foster a culture of worship and appeasement of the ‘Coiling Ones’, in an attempt to dissuade the serpents from devouring them. Hallowed pits filled with snakes or other slithering creatures are dug in many settlements and votive offerings are placed on stone altars in reverence. Mythologies have been invented, claiming that humans are allowed to join the Serpents in a warrior afterlife, provided they reliably contribute a tithe of flesh to the Snake Men’s cause in the material world. The humans in such settlements train ceaselessly in combat to prepare for such an event and imbibe snake poison from a myriad of local species to bolster their constitutions.
The Blood Naga are only happy to exploit this misguided belief and draw mobs of able warriors from these settlements, who the Snake Men refer to as Fang Thralls, when it is time for the marga to engage in open warfare. These remarkably resilient and motivated fighting men contribute to the Snake Men armies with their numbers and tenacity, tasked with tying down the infantry of opposing forces.
The Fang Thralls wield weapons modified from agricultural or hunting implements: sickles, choppers, polearms and wooden shields. Their hard lives inure them to pain and grant them a desperate wiry strength. Exposed as they are to the Hinterlands’ Warpstone-suffused atmosphere, deformities and disfigurements are common among the Khureshi humans where they are viewed as blessings as much as curses. Most display protruding spikes, scales and bony growths that prove useful in battle. Some among them are given the honour of equipping poisoned weapons by Pannaga leaders.
When the battle is done the Naga harvest the remains of the fallen Fang Thralls for the flesh larders and temple-laboratories, their souls consigned to the present Naga or Pannaga leaders. Most survivors are brought before the Blood Naga and inculcated with enchantments to become the next generation of elders, though a wily few see the Snake Men and Naga for what they truly are and escape in the mayhem to instigate rebellions in secret.
Khureshi Fang Thrall (Blowgun)
The human inhabitants of Khuresh use the spear-blowgun to hunt game and to protect themselves against predators at range. Tipped with a poison derived from the pulp of a carnivorous orchid found in the Hinterlands’ blood forests, such blowgun darts can effectively subdue some of the larger monsters of the peninsula, though only when deployed in large numbers. The speartips affixed to the front of the blowguns allow these tough men to fend off enemies that manage to close the distance or to finish off downed foes.
When deployed in profusion the poison of these blowgun darts can even debilitate a Sarpa Warrior should they manage to pierce through its hardened scales. This is why the Blood Naga keep Khureshi human tribes skilled in their use under more scrutiny than most, keeping their populations in check and actively encouraging cult worship to maintain compliance, though a small number of rebellious tribes still exist in secret.
In battle human blowgun users are deployed among the Fang Thralls, utilizing their training and skills in jungle combat to act as readily available, numerous and expendable skirmishers, under the watchful eyes of venom-spitting Naja leaders.
Makor Fang Launcher
Чудовищная артиллерия, представляющая собой застрельщиков наг, восседающих на неуклюжем создании-амфибии, которое населяет побережные области Хуреша.
Originally bred before the Great Cataclysm to contend with the mighty reptilian war beasts of the Lizardmen, the Makor has proven a dependable asset in the serpent-Naga forces over its millennia of service. It pulls the sea barges for amphibious assaults and carries war machines on its back. Its booming elephantine bellow, regularly heard throughout the Hinterlands, has struck fear into the hearts of many elves and men. During intervals in between conflicts, herds of Makor are compelled to labour on the Snake Men sanctums, hauling masonry with their bulk and prehensile trunks. The favoured mount of most Khureshi leaders, its likeness is commonly depicted on pillars, murals and statues through the peninsula.
The Makor has adapted to the largely Warpstone-irradiated environment of Khuresh, though at the cost of a slower birth rate. Its tough pebbled hide is covered with a layer of slime that protects the creature from heat, as well as a staggering amount of poisons and disease endemic to the Hinterlands. The Makor has a considerable appetite, as its body requires the extra mass and energy to quickly regenerate battle damage. Vividly-coloured spined fins run along its sides, serpentine tail and leonine clawed limbs. The Makor is omnivorous but prefers a diet of meat, indicated by its wide saw-toothed maw reminiscent of that of a merwyrm’s.
While the Makor has inherited the venomous bite of the merwyrm, the creature has an even deadlier form of venom-delivery. Like the elephants of Ind, Araby and the Southlands, the Makor bears a muscular prehensile trunk with which it can manipulate objects. In this case however it is also a proboscis housing a large retractable tooth that can quickly form from the trunk’s secreted enzymes. This tooth is hollow and barbed, attached to the tip of a radula that is loaded with venom from an attached organic bulb. Through powerful muscular contractions the Makor can inject its enemies with this envenomed tooth, filling them with a hundred different neurotoxins. In this way the Makor defends itself from the gargantuan predators of the sea. The harpoon swiftly regrows within hours as the Makor gets nourishment from its feast.
The Naga have learned to coax the trained Markor into impaling inanimate targets with their harpoons so they can be harvested as ammunition. Tokke craftsmen load the barbed javelin-sized spikes onto portable bolt throwers. With rope made of Naga hair tresses, the Fang Launcher bolt thrower is mounted on the howdahs of the Makor. The elevated height allows the Snake Men operators to fire the Makor’s toxic harpoons at enemy formations and monsters from a longer range, all while smashing through enemy formations and fortifications.
The marine Turbinid Abyss marga boasts one of the largest menagerie of these creatures. Since the creation of the Vortex their Blood Naga Queen have bred Makor with the mutated whales and sea beasts that inhabit the Far Sea. Warped by the power of Chaos, these ‘Beasts of Five Forms’ are host to an array of bizarre mutations, including large antlers, long tusks or in rarer cases wings for limited gliding flight.
A skilled monster acquisitions team of House van de Kuypers had once attempted to capture the exotic Makor of Khuresh, knowing that the Imperial Zoo paid exorbitant amounts of gold to those who can acquire the rarest specimens. On their ship’s return journey home from a trading mission at Cathay, the captain of the Richter had spotted a sluggish Makor covered in Warpstone-inflicted wounds around the western Hinterlands’ coasts and decided it was the best opportunity they had to catch it. The crew of the Richter managed to subdue the beast and confined it within the hold of their vessel, losing nearly half of their number in the process. As their ship approached the coasts of the Southlands however, a strange noise emanated from within the hold. When the crew went to check they were horrified by what had occurred. The Makor had mutated and slipped its bindings, becoming more serpentine but retaining its elephant-like head. When a rescue ship of elves from the Fortress of Dawn came upon the Richter, they found her terrified captain hiding within his cabin and barely clinging to life. He recounted how the creature attacked and devoured everyone else aboard, before it leapt off and swam towards the coast. This story has given rise to the Grootslang legend, leading to numerous sightings of the beast by Old World trade ships, particularly those from Marienburg, navigating along the southern coasts of the Southlands.
In Skon Basin dwells the largest population of Forest Goblins within Khuresh, sharing their arboreal and cavernous homes with the Earth Tiger, Great Khureshi Huntsman, and Gravid Orb Weaver Spiders. Just as in many other regions, the Goblins were preyed upon by gigantic arthropods that inhabited the forests and chasms of the peninsula when they first arrived. They turned to the worship of these monsters, their spider venom-drugged Shamans building totems and learning to tame and coerce the arachnids as mounts and pets. The isolation of Khuresh from other large mountain chains meant that the local Forest Goblins could not easily trade with the mountain-dwelling Night Goblin tribes for iron weapons, so their tools of wood, stone and bone remain primitive and of minor hazard to the Snake Men.
The earliest generation of the Forest Goblins had entered the primeval rainforests of Khuresh shortly after the Naga and Snake Men were abandoned by their creators. In the Goblins the Naga found a furtive species of thieving and spiteful yet cowardly beings, natural sneak-thieves and backstabbers. However, they observed that the little Greenskins possessed the aptitude and dexterity to construct more complex tools and contraptions that the larger Orcs lacked the wits or motivation to make. The Naga also saw that tribes of Orcs were able to bully the smaller Goblins into compliance, creating a labour force that built and maintained their devices and weapons of war. Seeking an inexhaustible supply of labourers, the Naga attempted to dominate the extremely numerous Goblins through similar displays of power and intimidation. The Greenskins proved poorly disciplined and frequently staged daring escapes, sabotages or wide-scale rebellions when the opportunity arose.
In the search for a way to overcome their innate disobedience, the Naga Queens captured countless numbers of Goblins and vivisected them in gruesome magical experiments, though only when they came into contact with humans and the parasites that afflicted them did the Naga Queens make their ghastly breakthrough. Half-lobotomized Forest Goblin subjects were grafted with body parts from human children, then implanted with a parasitic mutant hairsnake that commandeered the mind of infested warm-blooded hosts. The mutant horsetail worm would burrow itself deep into the remaining portions of the Greenskin’s brain and take control of the Greenskin’s higher functions, amalgamating with its host as time passed and rendering it compliant. Prior to the operation, the worm parasite would be imprinted with specific Naga or Pannaga, establishing a magical link that allowed the Serpents to direct their new puppets with only their thoughts. The body of the former Goblin would then be embalmed and placed within an ensorcelled urn or jar filled with oil extracted from other dead Goblins, where it would emerge days later for service.
Taught craftsmanship by the Naga, the impish Toil-Puppets were sent to work on the great Serpent sanctums, where the Toil-Puppets proved themselves as skilled but mercurial craftsmen and workers. Though the creation process had made them more suggestible, the host organism had remarkably retained a sliver of their capricious Greenskin nature that urged them to cause harm. Grasping and prone to boredom in peacetime, the Toil Puppets would inevitably instigate acts of ruin during building projects, though to a far less damaging extent than pure Goblins and were more easily placated with gifts. Undeterred, the serpent-Naga repurposed many of these first Toil-Puppets as agents of subversion and sabotage, sent forth to steal vital resources, correspondence and artefacts from the enemy, spy on their rivals, harry supply lines and assassinate vulnerable targets by swarming them on occasion. Successive generations were infused with the essences of Djinn and Spites during the embalming stage, further improving their furtiveness as the creatures could now obscure themselves in shadow until they wished to reveal themselves or were detected through witchsight.
Referred to by local humans as the Toyul or Look Tap, the fully developed Toil-Puppets have the repulsive childlike appearance of a Goblin-Human hybrid: a large sickly green or brown misshapen infant covered in tumorous growths with a stooped posture and retractable claws hanging off gangly arms. Unfocused milky eyes emerge from the creature’s husk of a face, above a perpetually grimacing mouth filled with needle-like teeth. The Toil-Puppet bears a malevolently playful and erratic personality like that of a vicious child. Agile and swift as the langurs of southern Cathay despite its disproportionate limbs, the creature delights in scaling walls and trees where it stalks those who pique its interest.
The Toil-Puppets are incapable of conventional speech, communicating with their handlers telepathically. The voice boxes of the Goblins are always the first thing removed in the creation process, as the Greenskins’ incessant blathering has always annoyed the Naga. Instead, faint childlike giggling and tapping noises can be heard from no distinct source whenever a Toil-Puppet lurks close and wants their presence to be known.
When inactive the Toil-Puppets sleep inert in urns and large jars filled with viscous dark oil. These containers are placed throughout the temple-laboratories, and secluded in tree-alcoves and statues that demarcate the borders of Blood Naga territories. Large concentrations are scattered throughout the northern borders of Khuresh with Cathay and Ind, near the southern border with the Asur-controlled Gates of Calith, and around the web-festooned Greenskin stronghold of Skon Basin in the northern Hinterlands. These wake from fitful sleep en masse to alert the Snake Men of incoming invasions and screen their armies when the Serpents launch punitive assaults.
Ever since the primitive Orcs and Goblins began attacking the human inhabitants of Khuresh — the chosen prey of the Naga — the Snake Men have used the Toil-Puppets’ subversive abilities to keep the Greenskins of the Hinterlands in a constant state of attrition through inter-tribal warfare, by playing on their superstitions and implicating each other in thefts, murders and abductions. The Forest Goblins have only the vaguest notion of the vile experiments their kind are subjected to and their tribes often accuse one another as serpent collaborators.
In times of war, the Toil-Puppets are brought to the battlefield where their elusive qualities and vexatious personalities are exploited for lethal effect as stealthy scouts and skirmishers. They are armed with wicked daggers and the venom-laced Rambite throwing darts, which the imps employ with savage glee against the Gors of the jungles in twisted games. Little more than a sharpened stake with a course black-feathered tail, these darts allow the Toil-Puppets to attack at range before swiftly slinking away into the gloom.
The Toil-Puppets begin their unnatural lives with fragile constitutions, easily harmed by mundane weapons. The Serpents are careful not to needlessly expend too many of them, as the death of entire packs of Toil-Puppets can debilitate a linked Naga Queen, Kanya or Pannaga for hours through a feedback loop curse affected by the mental tether. As the years pass however, their strength increases from a diet of blood, milk and raw flesh until their speed and reflexes rival that of elves. Horrific in aspect, the elder specimens called Talismanics are ethereal creatures vulnerable only to enchanted weapons.
The Black Candle Troop of the Ebon Stone marga and the gold-leaf covered Auric Young of the Golden Cradle marga are particularly formidable packs of Talismanics that have survived for centuries. Shrouded in Dark Magic with Shyish-cursed darts and Ghur-cursed blades, these scuttling aberrations can puncture through armour and pluck out the hearts of Beasts, Elves and Men with barely an inconvenience. They are particularly empowered during Geheimnisnacht and Hexensnacht under the light of Morrslieb, rampaging freely under the jungle canopy of the Hinterlands and sowing misery wherever they go.
The 8 feet-tall Sarpa Warriors are the backbone of the Snake Men armies, a role they have proudly kept since the earliest days. Robust and resourceful, they were created with an innate thirst for combat and bloodletting, and with a resolute sense of loyalty towards their brood and Naga Queens. The most numerous of the Snake Men castes, the Sarpa are robust fighters of cold-blooded practicality. The Sarpa care nothing for honour, they fight viciously to satisfy their own bloodlust and to cruelly dominate their adversaries.
They are the creatures most often found raiding and capturing the younger races to feed the insatiable hunger of their Blood Naga Queens. The Sarpa’s large size betrays their sharp reflexes and startlingly quick speed. Adapted to the harsh environment of Khuresh, they are near immune to disease, possess a resilience to pain and trauma that would kill specimens of the younger races many times over, and are capable of regenerating limb damage after some time. When brought to war the Sarpa prefer to waylay the enemy in ambushes or strike at the flanks of armies, their natural agility allowing them to respond quickly to changing battlefield conditions.
The Sarpa wield undulating blades forged of meteoric iron and strange halberds designed to leave wicked gouging wounds. All of these are ritualistically coated in a brew of lethal toxins derived from their own venom glands. Even a scratch from these weapons causes victims to die in agony, as their flesh swells and hideously bloats with necrosis and their blood clots like spoiled milk or run in rivulets from their orifices. Disarming a Sarpa is futile, for they will simply strike with their dripping fangs that can puncture through light mail and leather armour, injecting their prey with paralyzing venom that peels flesh like shed skin. Even in its death throes the Sarpa can lash out in a final act of spite, dousing their enemy with caustic blood. One brood is known to equip their Sarpa Warriors with an entire arsenal of warpstone weapons.
Over the centuries the Blood Naga Queens have experimented with many iterations of the Sarpa form. Some have rattles on their tails that cause fear in warm-blooded prey when they reverberate. Others possess chameleonic skin or the controllable mandibles of venomous insects grafted on their tails, allowing the Sarpa to strike from unexpected angles. Certain specimens are stricken by unnatural mutations, with jagged bones protruding from their scales and jutting horns on their heads like miniature versions of the Sawanak serpent.
The Sarpa that stalk the halls of sunken Melay have evolved gills and adapted their bodies to the high pressure of the ocean depths. Those who frequently venture into the Dreaming Wood and the wastes of the north and south bear mutations from multiple eyes to serrated pincers and boney blades for hands.
Possessed of incredible physical prowess and practically immortal unless slain by violence, most of the Raksaka are as old as the temple-laboratories that they protect. Rather than standing sentinel in the open around the chambers of their Queens as would other guards, the Raksaka seclude themselves in wide adjacent recesses above and below the entryways, as they wait for interlopers foolish enough to believe the Naga undefended and vulnerable, eyes scanning ceaselessly through the dim halls. When an intruder presents itself, they strike out lightning fast and brutally crush their target. Stealth is no refuge as their enhanced senses and witchsight can detect spells of concealment, body heat, the faintest changes in scent and wind direction, and the slightest reverberations of heartbeats or footsteps. Only when called upon to escort their Queens or to perform some urgent task or pursue a specific quarry do they emerge onto the battlefield armed to the teeth.
Millennia of experimentation from their Naga Queens have made the Raksaka a strange breed. Besides the characteristic four arms of the Pannaga and two tails, they have two heads with their own flexible elongated necks. The two heads seamlessly act in concert as if they are part of a single consciousness and are able to make precise predictions of enemy movements, giving the Raksaka unparalleled awareness and dexterity in battle and allowing them to wield a combination of close combat and ranged weapons simultaneously. One pair of arms would wield swords and shields or wickedly bladed double-crescent polearms — crafted from Warpstone and meteoric iron — which can pierce through ethereal forms as easily as flesh and steel. The other pair would shoot the vile spinesplinter arrows from ornate great bows, blood-cursed projectiles with forked heads that possess a strange intelligence. These arrowheads break off from the shaft and come alive once they make contact with their targets, boring into the bodies of struck victims and honeycombing them from the inside out. The preternatural skill of the Raksaka lets them steadily rain down volleys of such arrows even as they strike down the enemy within arm’s reach.
The fortitude of these serpents is legendary across Khuresh, capable of bearing wounds that would incapacitate other Snake Men. On their rare appearances on the battlefield they form into disciplined ranks that anchor the entire army, living walls for their Naga Queens fearless of any danger. Their armour is the toughest among the Khureshi as befitting their status, with interlocking plates of meteoric iron mail, reinforced with burning Wyrdstone inscriptions that thrum with terrible curse-giving spells.
If somehow slain in battle and unless the body of the Rakshaka is consumed by flame or ruined beyond recognition, a younger form of the Rakshaka will emerge from the remains within an hour like a snake shedding its skin and mature within weeks, recollecting its previous memories and battle expertise, before resuming its post at the Naga’s side.
Long lived as they are and bearing the memories and experiences of countless fights, a few venerated Pannaga Raksaka legions tend to gain a taste for dealing death to a particular type of foe, earning distinctive epithets. The Ebon Stone marga have the Elf-Manglers, the Twin Snakes and Umber Progeny both deploy separate bands of Dwarf-Slicers, and the cannibalistic Immortal Coil field the Serpent-Eaters that are dreaded and despised by all other Snake Men. Others such as the firearm-hoarding Amaranthine Lotus, the aquatic Turbinid Abyss and the gliding mercenary Twin Snakes marga field even stranger Raksaka regiments blessed with exotic weaponry or mutations.
Biowak Hunting Pack
Its corrosive venom-covered serrated teeth and hook claws allow the Biowak to rend thick hide and even steel armour with ease. Jet-black armoured scales covered in quills and spines let the Biowak stalk prey through the night and jungle gloom. Hideous rib-like bony protrusions jut from its underside, these ‘rib-teeth’ can be manipulated by the Monitor and assist it in grappling attacks. The creature’s tail is composed of thick corded muscle that can whip around to knock an unwary opponent off balance, allowing the Biowak to close in for a killing blow as it bears down with its bulk and crunches down with its underside rib-teeth.
Biowaks are known to be cannibalistic and highly opportunistic, frequently preying on smaller, weaker or injured members of their species when the opportunity presents itself. They are also known to pry open tombs and dig up the graves of local Khureshi humans. Many running battles have been fought between these reptiles and the local tribes over such intrusions.
Like the Salamander, the Biowak possesses the ability to spit gouts of glowing corrosive liquid. While not as volatile and flammable the liquid is longer lasting, far more concentrated and can cause paralysis in larger prey. The corrosive liquid is created by specialized glands on the creature’s neck which give the Biowak its gruesomely bloated throat sac. The Biowak can spit jets of this caustic liquid to blind, immobilize and pre-digest its target at a distance, melting flesh, bone and metal with sickening effectiveness. The sickly green-tinged venomous liquid also courses under the entirety of the Biowak’s skin, leaking out of large pores or pustules pockmarking the length of its body when sufficiently agitated. These features — combined with the macabre jutting rib-teeth and tendency to rob tombs — give the Grave Monitor its moniker, as witnesses have mistakenly believed it to be an undead monstrosity halfway through decomposition.
Local myths claim that this creature has such an obsession with the hunt, that it perpetually drools blood. This is a slight misconception because although it does drool blood, it is not caused by insatiability but due to the acid glands leaking and burning through parts of the gumline, which rapidly regenerate just enough to maintain function but not enough to prevent pain. While the Blood Naga could have fixed such a problem, the suffering that this defect caused heightened the Biowak’s aggression beyond that exhibited by its component predecessors. In combat the Biowak fully unleashes its pent-up rage, momentarily forgetting its unending pain as it scalds, brawls and tears at the foe. It will eagerly hunt Trolls, Giant Squigs, Basilisks, and Gigantic Spiders, and will even gather to attack larger war beasts such as Hydra or Makor, as well as trespassing Beastmen Warherds.
Biowak hunting packs are often gathered together for war by Pannaga handlers and deployed as fast moving screening forces, intercepting heavy cavalry and weakening large opposing monsters and constructs. Some are kept by the Blood Naga as guardian pets for their keen senses. The Biowak’s stomach acid is incredibly corrosive, allowing them to safely digest putrid carcasses infected with a variety of toxins, parasites and bacteria that would otherwise be lethal to other scavengers. Biowaks are thus used to clean up battlefields in Khuresh to prevent plague from uncontrollably spreading across the Hinterlands, though the Snake Men offer no such ministrations in the lands of their enemies.
Due to the hostile nature of the Hinterlands, the profusion of deadly monsters and their own truculent temperament, most Biowaks tend to not live to full maturity. Those exceptional few that do however are called the Varan Hayra, the end stage of the Naga’s experiments on this species. Toughened from centuries of survival, the ancient Hayra develops faster regenerative capabilities and grows larger than all others of its kind. Its most distinguishable features are the patagial membranes and air sacs growing across the sides of its torso, between the front limbs and hind limbs. Through prolonged exposure to the Warpstone-saturated environment of Khuresh, the Biowak’s rib-teeth mutated to accommodate the wide membranes and air sacs, allowing the Hayra to glide in the air over great distances. By climbing up and leaping off elevated terrain such as the branches of the Hinterlands’ great trees, the Hayra can swoop onto unsuspecting targets from above, crushing and ripping chunks out of the unfortunates as the reptile-abomination lands on them.
As the Biowak matures into the Varan Hayra its acid becomes slower acting, rendering it less efficient at corroding metal or bone with its spit. However, mutations in its innards have bestowed the Hayra with the ability to violently expel large concussive pellets of half-digested hair, horn, minerals, teeth and bones that become volatile as they mix with the caustic spit at its throat. These disgusting projectiles explode on contact with hard surfaces and spray shards of bone and teeth in all directions, maiming those unlucky enough to be caught in the blast with shrapnel and drenching their wounds in searing venomous mucous. This vomit attack only naturally occurs when the Hayra is confronted by a strong enemy and can only be artificially induced by Naga or Pannaga handlers in battle, provided the Hayra has been fed with the corpses of other fallen foes beforehand.
In 2417 IC, a raiding party of Skaven from Clan Moulder travelled to Khuresh looking for exotic specimens to create new monsters. It was the Biowaks that first caught their scent as they flicked their forked tongues to scent their quarry. The Skaven hunting parties found themselves harassed and picked off by the lurking creatures. Rat Ogres were reduced to agonized lumps of meat and metal by acid. Eventually, the Packmasters came upon what they thought would be their prize: a Varan Hayra. Instead, the creature and its pack had found their own prize, a meal that ran to them. Not a single Skaven of that expedition escaped Khuresh, the Biowaks hunting them all down before they could reach the safety of their tunnels.
The Krasarb’s basic form is a large floating vaguely human or elven head, trailing mutated appendages of exposed organs and offal that ooze with slime and pus, with some terminating in writhing serpents. Its jaw is distended and its mouth is filled with huge incisors that drip with gore. Long, slime-matted dark hair drifts in the air as if the creature is underwater. A large elongated toothy feeding proboscis, like a mutated tongue in the shape of a lamprey, emerges from its yawning maw. It is able to use its appendages like hideous tentacles to grasp and manipulate objects and other beings, and many are covered with further mutations that produce barbs, scales, spines, eyes, more jaws and strange filaments that secrete a cloud of gas that obscures their forms. What seem like gaudy ornaments attached to the Krasarb Haruspex’s heads are the control apparatuses of the Naga that keep their actions in check during the heat of battle.
In the wilds of the Hinterlands the Krasarb is an active nocturnal carnivore often found around the swamps, graves and wastes of the Hinterlands. It glides on the currents of the Winds of Magic as its keen sense of smell draws it to battlefields, slaughterhouses and settlements with wounded soldiers or new childbirths. A severely gluttonous creature, it will fearlessly attack flesh and blood monsters that stumble into its path in an attempt to feed on their blood and entrails. Each meal disturbingly adds to its mass, with the older individuals growing to the size of Giants. At night the Krasarb becomes luminescent; its body giving off a lambent glow of sickly green and ochre as it reflects the light of Morrslieb.
While in motion the Krasarb’s exposed organs — typically consisting of the heart, liver and lungs — all pulsate with sorcerous power. When only a certain organ beats, the Krasarb is able to remotely induce arterial ruptures, strangulation or sadistically regenerate the injuries of its victims to perpetuate their suffering on those within close proximity. Witnesses who have merely seen the body of the Krasarb at a distance experience visions of antediluvian horror and portents of doom in their dreams.
The Krasarb’s deadliest aspect however is its ability to exude illness and rapid decomposition. Believed to bear the Plague God’s curse, wind blowing through the abomination’s dangling appendages turn into necrotic vapours. The Krasarb can direct this gale at enemies as a billowing miasma that sickens other lifeforms or dissolves flesh, rots wood and corrodes metal. Mundane weapons tend to crumble as warriors try to bring them to bear against these monsters. Youth and vigour are sapped with the merest brush of their entrails as they float through the fighting mass like ghastly sea jellies among a school of small fish. When the Winds of Magic swirl through Khuresh, the Krasarb spread the Snake Eater Plague through their miasma, warping the entrails of those warm-blooded creatures caught in the clouds into swarms of snakes that excruciatingly erupt from their bodies.
The Krasarb were not originally devised as such by the Naga Queens, rather they came from Naga that had their entire bodies and minds irrevocably altered by an experiment gone astray. During the pact with the Ruinous Powers the Snake Men defiled the sacred barays of the Lost City of the Old Ones previously used by the Slann, turning many of them into dark reservoirs of organic soup from which the brood-sects carried out terrible experiments. A brood of Naga submerged themselves in these fluids and enacted a secret ritual, beseeching the Dark Gods for forbidden knowledge that would place them ascendant over all others of their kind.
Perhaps as the result of sabotage by one of the other Naga or some capricious whim of the Chaos Gods, these Naga were savaged by sorcerous infection and their innate hunger was magnified tenfold. They tore at their own bodies and their features metamorphosed into the likeness of the younger races which they so despised, emerging as the precursors of the Krasarb. Their considerable intellect had wasted away, leaving a formidable cursed monster of instinct and predator cunning. The Blood Naga Queens found that the Krasarb could also transmit this curse to other Naga if they consumed their putrid saliva or the severed flesh of their appendages. Worried of what they could potentially do to the entire Snake Men civilization, the ruling Blood Naga joined forces to destroy most of the original batch and found a way to bend the will of the remainder and their progeny through sacrificial rites. Now the Krasarb plague Khuresh and the surrounding lands at the pleasure of the Queens, with new specimens created out of younger Naga who have betrayed their matriarchs or transgressed against the tenets of their brood-sects.
Brought forth into the millennia of wars against the enemies of the serpent-Naga, the Krasarb Haruspex have developed a particular taste for Ogres. Many a Maneater have found themselves devoured by these monsters, as the Krasarb corrode their gut-plates with rotting curse-winds and feast on the bountiful innards underneath.
Блин, а так-то неплохая основа. Если OvN или та команда, что делает ER, будут контент для третьей части делать, есть наработки для еще одной забытой расы. Если конечно разрабы сами не решатся ее добавить)
Хе-хе. Не успел ответить. В отдельную тему перенесли
Если конечно разрабы сами не решатся ее добавить)
Может, конечно, и решатся, но кажется, что у них есть куда более приоритетные и «безопасные» темы: минимум по одному DLC для всех новых рас (у демонов ведь даже избранных на старте не будет), + DLC по остальным расам — там просто клепать и клепать можно. А ещё есть Ниппон, например, или Арабия, которые являются вполне желаемыми расами, но вот от Арабии СА упрямо отказывается. Т.е. её нет в планах на ближайшие многие годы. То же самое наверняка из с нагами.
Мне кажется если креативы и добавят наг в игру, то в лучшем случае в составе армии Инда (как сделали с фимирами у Норски). Тем более что стилистически они более — менее подходят.
—, сомнительно. Как минимум, Инд — это порядок, а Наги — разрушение (а вроде как даже Хаос).
Alexaneek, но наги всё ещё могут быть в составе хотя бы одной фракции с прочим Индом, как в случае с Аранессой и вампиратами у Берега Вампиров или Арханом и остальными владыками-мертвецами у Царей гробниц.
Мне кажется если креативы и добавят наг в игру, то в лучшем случае в составе армии Инда
Это, наверное, вот этот похожий на слона юнит создал впечатление, что у Инда и Наг может быть что-то общее. Но на самом деле у них крайне мало точек соприкосновения в плане похожести: Инд — это людская раса порядка, а Наги Хуреша — отвратительные хаоситские змеелюди и множество другой хищной живности, мутировавших под влиянием богатых залежей варп-камня в местных дремучих джунглях.
Ondiris, с Арханом не вижу проблемы. Он и должен быть среди царей гробниц. Вот Аранесса да, это что-то с чем-то) Впрочем, она вроде и по лору в некромантию умеет и живет среди пиратов, так что в принципе тут тоже не такой уж невозможный вариант (хотя я бы конечно их скорее к каким-нибудь будущим южным княжествам или псам войны отнес).
В принципе да, Наги Хуреша могут быть в составе какой-нибудь фракции, но я сомневаюсь, что это будет именно Инд. Они скорее будут среди каких-нибудь хаоситов. Ну или в составе какой-нибудь хаосопоклоннической фракции порядка типа Короля Обезьян например.
Ребята продоложают креативить.
Soma Mind Creeper (Magic Artillery)
Магическая акустическая артиллерия Хуреша
The Soma were once an aquatic strategist caste of Snake Men advisors produced by the Naga Queen of the future Emerald Delta marga who inhabited the great networks of flooded forests and swamps in the eastern regions, named after her and trained to excel in mind alteration. After the pact with the Ruinous Powers, they were immersed in the liquefied soup of a Slann Mage Priest in a fell ritual, taken from the corrupted pool of its conquered temple-chamber. When these serpents emerged their bodies had atrophied, rendering them virtually immobile on land. However, they had attained formidable destructive magical powers and telepathic cognitive abilities. The process had also removed their need to feed on flesh and made them radiotrophic, nourished by the Warpstone-suffused atmosphere and the fell winds that blow north from the meteorite-grounds of the southern Hinterlands and the Southern Wastes.
The Soma are afforded a special level of respect within the hierarchy of the Snake Men, as the Blood Naga believe them to be a form closer to ascendance at the end of their millennia-long search for solutions to the Great Questions. They are invaluable to the serpent-Naga’s experiments for their conditioned loyalty, photographic memories, rapid information processing and prescient insight into knowledge that even the Blood Naga are not wholly privy to. Their magical prowess and ability to tear into the minds of others makes them useful interrogators of particularly willful prisoners, elementals and spirits.
Centuries ago the Soma were painstakingly housed in the corrupted barays of the Lost City of the Old Ones and some other capital sanctums, with Naga Queens and Pannaga Chieftains journeying from all over the Hinterlands to consult them on matters of war or research. From these static locations, the Naga found that the Soma also provided valuable security. The Soma could detect the presence of intelligent beings and magical entities for many miles, alerting the Naga they served of all who ventured near their sanctums and temple-laboratories. During sieges the Soma discharged long-ranged energy shots, radiated paralyzing seizures, called down unnatural storms and bound the weak-willed within proximity to do their bidding. With their protection the Lost City and the home sanctums of other Blood Naga Queens became all but unassailable.
As the Snake Men took their wars across the world during the stranglehold, the serpent-Naga came to miss the awesome power of their sedentary assistants. When the empire of the Elves and the early human kingdoms of the east attacked Khuresh in retaliation, the Soma once again proved their worth with lethal precision. Efforts were put in place to find a way to render these serpents mobile yet practical in battle, along with a convenient source of magic sustenance.
A chance meeting with a Clan Skryre Skaven expedition, lost on its way towards Cathay, held the key. Through interrogation and persuasion the serpent-Naga found that the Skaven were able to draw energy contained within Warpstone and channel it into advanced arcane devices, giving their ramshackle contraptions motive force. Though the Blood Naga had managed to cobble together their own war machines derived from Old One technology and their own research into Chaos, they did not wish to squander the opportunity to absorb more vile knowledge. Nervous ratmen envoys were sent back to their Clans and eventually returned with select Warlock-Engineers and Master Moulders, in return for an enormous amount of Warpstone gathered from the southern jungles. Thus began the project that would see the Soma join the armies of the Serpents on the battlefield. Although sabotage and betrayal were mulled over by some of the Skaven during the construction process, intense pressure from the clairvoyant Soma and chilling Blood Naga dissuaded any serious attempts. None of the Skaven representatives that collaborated with the Naga returned from their sojourn to Khuresh, their minds devoured by the first of the Soma vessels as they rose from their moorings deep in the flooded chasms of the Hinterlands. The Council of Thirteen, content with their caches of Warpstone with fewer rivals to contend with, were disinclined to pursue the matter.
Full locomotion was finally achieved with the vat technology of the Skaven as the Soma were placed into liquid vessels dubbed the Fad Raya Shells, crafted from exceptional hardened Warp-glass that could withstand the impact of mundane projectiles and swung weapons. Filled with the waters of the defiled sacred pools, the vessel was connected to a mechanism that would periodically infuse the liquid with fresh Warp-fluid, nourishing the occupant. Unencumbered by the biological constraints of the body, the Soma could commit themselves fully to levitate the vessel it lay within far above the ground. The devolved Tokke thrall-Skinks were compelled to partake in the construction process and would later be responsible for maintenance, sometimes to also be used as components. From then on the Soma were able to accompany the serpent armies as living artillery and magical foci, ensconced within specially-designed floating platforms bedecked with root wiring, ornamented channeling pillars, supplicatory offerings and sacrificial-corpses.
On the battlefield, the Soma exudes baleful energy that weakens any nearby mortal creature, deteriorating them from the inside-out if they remain within the vicinity for too long. They can pinpoint weaknesses and fatigue in enemy forces, broadcasting the information into the minds of surrounding Snake Men. Enemy warriors that stray too close are paralyzed by telepathic seizures or are cursed by the stored agony of past victims, manifesting physical damage upon their bodies. Coruscating blasts of pure Chaos energy char distant foes. Incoming projectiles have their trajectory distorted. The flow of the Winds of Magic deranges in their presence, allowing the Soma to consistently thwart the conjurations of enemy wizards and augment the powers of the Blood Naga. Elder Soma can cast spells of Dhar, draining the adversaries’ life force and engulfing them with soul-stealing typhoons. When caught in an untenable position the Soma can also teleport its vessel entirely to another location, though it risks damaging the container and killing everything around it in a cataclysmic explosion.
The creators of the Soma Mind Creeper vessels, the Emerald Delta marga, field the largest number and most potent forms of these creatures. Experimenting on captured Warpfire Dragons, alterations have been made to allow their Soma to extract the life-force of others — particularly wizards- and compress their souls into Warpstone, creating a self-sustaining energy source to facilitate longer campaigns. They have also concocted a serum from the Soma tanks’ fluid to grant limited prescience and greater regeneration to their Blood Naga and Pannaga elite, aiding them greatly in their conflicts against the forces of Nippon to the east and the odd vampire incursion.