Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Space Cows For Stars Without Number or Your Old School Space Opera

Space  Cow 
Armor Class: 6 
Hit Dice : 15 - 30 
Attack Bonus : +8/+8/+8/+8/+8
Damage: 1d8 each claw 
Number Appearing :1d4 
Saving Throw :10+
Movement: 30, 12 light year warp jumping capable 
Through out the Talon system the herds of the these gene modified macro organism creatures graze on asteroids and meteor swarms passing usable metallic ores and refined waste products . The Astro Tardigrada  which means " sky slow walker" are able to survive in extreme environments that would kill almost any other animal. Some can survive temperatures of close to absolute zero, or 0 Kelvin (−273 °C (−459 °F)), temperatures as high as 151 °C (304 °F), 1,000 times more radiation than other animals, and almost a decade without water.Since 2007, tardigrades have also returned alive from studies in which they have been exposed to the vacuum of space for a few days in low Earth orbit. Tardigrades are the first known animal to survive in space and thus were the first to be modified for a life among the stars. 
Tardigrades have barrel-shaped bodies with four pairs of stubby legs. Most range from 3 meters to over 10 meters  in length, although the largest species may reach hundreds of meters. The body consist of a head, three body segments with a pair of legs each, and a caudal segment with a fourth pair of legs. The legs are without joints while the feet have four to eight claws each. The cuticle contains chitin and is moulted periodically.

 Space Tardigrades are eutelic, with all adult tardigrades of the same species having the same number of cells. Some species have as many as 40,000 cells in each adult, while others have far fewer.
The body cavity consists of a haemocoel, but the only place where a true coelom can be found is around the gonad. There are no respiratory organs, with gas exchange able to occur across the whole of the body. Some tardigrades have three tubular glands associated with the rectum; these may be excretory organs similar to the Malpighian tubules of arthropods, although the details remain unclear. Within the inner chambers of the creatures there is a bio acidic furnace which processes ore and products. The core of these creatures can reach millions of degrees. The sharp claw pads are capable of  1d8 points of damage per swipe. These creatures are non agressive and minor telepathic abilities allow alien or human drovers to direct the creatures where needed. 
The brain includes multiple lobes, mostly consisting of three bilaterally paired clusters of neurons.The brain is attached to a largeganglion below the oesophagus, from which a double ventral nerve cord runs the length of the body. The cord possesses one ganglion per segment, each of which produces lateral nerve fibres that run into the limbs. The cord now posses a pretech bio warp gate system allowing herds to move to there next mining assignment automatically. The species is capable of teleporting throught hyperspace up to 12 light years per day.  Many species possess a pair of rhabdomeric pigment-cup eyes, and there are numerous sensory bristles on the head and body. The creatures " see" in infrared, radio wave, and beyond. There senses are not tuned to any known human frequency. 

Tardigrades are one of the few groups of species that are capable of reversibly suspending their metabolism and going into a state of cryptobiosis. This state will be entered if no "food" is present. The monstrous creatures have numerous micro bio jets across the surface of their bodies. The creatures are actually capable of a decent in system planetary journey. The bodies of these creatures also contains a bio solar film allowing the creatures to metabolize star light into a usable form of nourishment  Many drovers have connected several ancient rod devices into the creatures allowing them to siphon off 1d100 volts of electricity per day. The creatures don't feel anything from this treatment contrary to popular belief.
Each animal is capable of processing 1d10 tons of ore per day. The creatures feed with abandon and have been know to attack space craft when starved. 
Because they make up is so dense, many colonists or drovers use old atomic rocket vessels to hit the monster herds with heavy blasters or stunners set to high levels. Anything below 1d4 points of damage may not be noticed by the creatures.
Wild herds of these creatures can range into the thousands of credits but wrangling these monsters takes both finesse and psionic might. Many stampedes of these monsters have been known to destroy space craft hundreds of times their size. The beasts process the very craft trying to round them up. There are spacers who seek these so called wild herds out for that very purpose.
Many wild herds may contain 2d100 head of these creatures. There are an infinite number of genetic variations of these creatures that have been created throughout the centuries.

Armor Class: 2-17 

Hit Dice: 9-11 
Attacks: Claws 1d6
Special: Teleport Without Error 6 times per day 
Move: 10, 24 when flying in system 
HDE/XP: 3/60 

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