Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Murlocs and Skum

A relatively short post this time. I hope to start doing more of these "bestiary-style" entries for some of the more minor creatures that explorers may run into. 

Murlocs and Skum were first encountered by the explorer ship, Verdance, when it discovered the Nexus in the Whispering Dark. It was many years until these two species were encountered again, this time being led by Illithid remnants. 

Both Murlocs and Skum appear to hail from the Whispering Dark. It is theorized that the Aboleth captured and enslaved them from some other system away from the Nexus, but it is unclear how they would have been able to do so since there is no evidence that the Aboleth were a space-faring species before they either joined forced with or enslaved a group of Illithids after the invasion failed. Based on some recovered corpses, both species have undergone some genetic modification in their past, and they also show signs of having been cloned. However, not all specimens have been cloned, so it is unclear why the Aboleth have cloned some of their number while others are able to breed normally (or so it is assumed). 

To date, no live Murlocs or Skum have been captured for interrogation. It is assumed they receive lethal mental attacks when captured or some sort of psychic command is pre-programmed into their brains to cause fatal hemorrhaging when captured or too injured to fight by their masters.  


Murlocs are small (standing 3-4 feet tall), spindly creatures. They are mostly humanoid in form, but their stature is very stooped, making them move on all fours much like a gorilla. Their bodies are covered in smooth, slimy flesh that has a wide variation of colors from green to white to purple to red. Their hands and feet tend to be darker in color if their bodies are light in color and vice versa when their bodies are dark in color. From their backs sprout several vestigial fins. Their eyes are large and slitted like at cat with colors typically being yellow or red. Murloc mouths are large and filled with sharp fangs. Murlocs are amphibious, but appear to require environments with high humidity in order to survive for long periods out of water. Murlocs speak a language that sounds like gurgling gibberish, not enough of which has been recorded and analyzed by Concord translator programs to make out anything but a few words like "bite", "kill", and "eat." 

Murlocs are typically used by Illithid and Aboleth forces as cannon fodder. They send them in in waves against foes before using less expendable forces. They do not appear to be a very intelligent species, though intelligent enough to learn how to use modern weapons and even to operate vehicles (albeit very poorly). Still, they have never been seen doing anything other than attack and cause havoc; never attempting to access a computer, use first aid techniques, or so forth. 

Murlocs for Savage Worlds
I use the stats for Murlocs generated by Mike McCall in his Savage Worlds conversion of the Warcraft setting. This setting can be found here.

Murlocs for Rogue Space
DRM +1; TP H; SZ S; MV 20' (walk); AR 0; DM Varies; HP 2; SP *
Gear: Murlocs typically wield daggers and clubs that deal L damage, but are sometimes equipped with pistols (needle, slug thrower, or laser), but these weapons are typically in terrible shape. If an attack roll with a pistol comes up with a roll of 3-4 on the attack, the weapon has jammed or otherwise malfunctioned and has been rendered useless. If the attack roll comes up with double 1's, it is assumed to have exploded in the Murloc's hands dealing weapon damage to the murloc and anyone within 10 feet as well. 
Amphibious: Murlocs can survive indefinitely on land or in water (salt or fresh).
Claws/Bite: L damage. 


Skum are the larger and more intelligent slave race of the Aboleth (and the Illithid it appears). They are largely humanoid in form, although much like Murlocs they walk with a hunched gait though they rarely need to use an arm to steady themselves, and they are much more powerfully built than the Murlocs. Their heads that look much like a piranha, with large purple-red eyes, and large mouths filled with razor-sharp teeth. Their flesh is covered in fine scales and is usually slimy to the touch and is usually a mottled green-gray in color with greenish-brown splotches. A large tail extends from their lower backs that ends in a crescent-shaped fin, much like that of an Aboleth. Their hands consist of two fingers and a thumb and are webbed, but many Skum cut their webbing back if they typically wield weapons. Skum speak a language that is dissimilar to Murlocs, so it is assumed they are kept in psionic contact with each other by their masters. 

Skum are muscle of Aboleth/Illithid attack forces. They are often armed with better weaponry than Murlocs, and some may even be equipped with armor (though this is rare). They are more intelligent than Murlocs, though they are still fairly primitive by galactic standards. They can learn to use modern equipment, but lack finesse which generally works in their favor. 

Skum for Savage Worlds
Attributes: Agility d6, Smarts d6, Spirit d6, Strength d8, Vigor d10
Skills: Fighting d4, Intimidation d4, Swimming d12, Notice d6, Stealth d6, Throwing d4
Charisma: -; Pace: 4; Parry: 5; Toughness: 8 (1)
Gear: Varies, but usually laser rifles or plasma rifles as well as some sort of melee weapon (dagger, club, including high-tech variations). There is usually one Skum in a group that is carrying a heavy weapon of some kind like a Laser Gatling or rocket launcher. Some skum might be equipped with armor, but the armor likely isn't form fitting so drop the Toughness by 2 points (to a minimum of 1). 
Edges: Ambidextrous
Special Abilities
• Armour +1: Natural armor.
• Claw: Str+d6.
• Darkvision: No vision penalties for darkness (range 12").
• Amphibious: Swimming Pace of 12", and cannot drown, but can also breathe air and survive indefinitely on land.
• Energy Resistance: -2 damage from cold.
• Endurance: +2 to Soak rolls.
(Thanks to the Savage Worlds Monster Finder for the stats for the Skum. Find it here as it is an excellent resource.)

Skum for Rogue Space
DRM +2; TP H; SZ A; MV 30' (walk); AR L; DM L to M; HP 5; SP *
Darkvision: Skum can see perfectly up to 60 feet even in pitch black conditions. 
Claws: L damage
Bite: M Damage
Amphibious: Skum can live indefinitely on land or in water. 

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