Tuesday, June 13, 2023

Electro-Magnetic Pulse: First Beat

Inspired by Weird & Wonderful Wavelengths.

Got a free video editor program and now I'm wilding out. Special thanks to executive producer Sofinho for giving me the means to download youtube videos as mp3s and/or mp4s in greater than 144p quality, without which all of this would be much lamer & more tedious:

Monday, June 12, 2023

D10 Horrid Bats of the Speculative Evolutionary Future

This post is dedicated to Ènziramire, who asked for it for whatever reason:

1. Samara Bat: A member of the subfamily Desmodontiae - better known as vampire bats. The samara bat has traded its ability to fly for extended periods for a peculiar feeding method. It will cling upside-down to branches in a deep torpor until it detects large, warm-blooded prey passing beneath, then drop in a tight spiral onto it - its wings are edged with papercut-sharp callouses, and its claws are long and sickle-like. Together with the anti-coagulating properties of its saliva, which the bat will apply to its wing-edges and claws, it's able to bring down prey from blood loss within minutes.

2. Jockey Bat: A parasitic species derived from the spectral bat which exists in a symbiotic relationship with a modified rabies virus. Compared to its ancestor, the jockey bat has a smaller body and much-reduced wings, while its head and teeth have remained comically-large in comparison. The jockey bat will latch onto the back of the neck of its hosts and inject a viral load directly into its cerebrospinal fluid, ensuring a minimal incubation period for the virus. The modified virus ensures an expression of furious rabies in 99% of observed cases. While the bat typically remains passively attached to its host, detaching only to mate, feed on creatures its host has killed, and to implant pups in carcasses of the same, it is also capable of directing its host's behaviour through hypersonic chirps to a limited degree, directing it away from the hosts of other jockey bats and even overcoming its virus-induced hydrophobia to extend its useful lifespan.

3. Blunderbuss Bat: Once thought to be its own species, now known to be the dinergate of the partially-eusocial descendants of the Honduran white bat. The blunderbuss bat is characterized by grossly-overdeveloped chest and leg muscles, along with thick wing membranes. The blunderbuss bat spends its idle time collecting sharp rocks and bits of metal, and when its nest is threatened will gather up these collections in its wings, anchor itself in place, and hurl them like a living catapult with enough force to deter or even kill any prospective bat-eaters or incautious people.

4. Bloodhound Bat: One of the horrors that came out of the sanguine oligarchates of New Zealand. Bloodhound bats are the size of large dogs, with a gait and body plan somewhere between a cheetah and a gorilla. Infamous for their sense of smell, bloodhound bats' ability to detect odour signatures put cancer-sniffing dogs to shame - their primary use was hunting down compatible and beneficial blood sources for their masters. Their secondary use - its efficacy much-exaggerated - was for their ability to smell emotional states, which made them a weapon of terror to police treachery in the ranks of their masters' private militaries. Not related to vampire bats at all, in fact a heavily-modified eastern tube-nosed bat - perhaps the most heavily-modified of any mammal of the Middle Anthropocene.

5. Firebomb Bat: A bio-organic weapon deployed against China in various unofficial attacks by proxies of the American military across the 21st century. The firebomb bat is nigh-indistinguishable from the Chinese rufous horseshoe bat, and in fact is capable of cross-breeding with the latter, with the firebomb bat's characteristics proving dominant. When the firebomb bat detects wooden structures or a sufficiently sizeable area of dry vegetation, it will enter a period of gorging itself, rapidly building fat and an internal store of acetone. A static spark from its own fur will then ignite it and cause it to explode - an explosion intended to incinerate its nest and any surroundings. Rampant spread of the firebomb bat lead to extermination of the Chinese rufous horseshoe bat population.

6. Beautification Bat: The product of an ultra-luxury gardening brand during the initial period of proliferation of advanced genetic engineering technology, that graceful, brief, and less-regulated time before the release of the GenoDie virus and other such terrors. Transgenically-implanted with preserved portions of the genomes of extinct butterfly populations, the beautification bat would transfer a portion of consumed insects into a secondary "stomach" which would act like a caterpillar's chrysalis, breaking down their organic matter and reconstructing it into algorithmically-lovely new pseudo-species of butterflies, which would then be regurgitated, and be unable to reproduce or even eat on their own - their only purpose being to flutter about looking pretty for a while.

7. Vaccination Bat: The product of that less graceful, less brief, and much more regulated time after the release of the GenoDie virus and other such terrors. A hybrid of vampire bats as well as insectivorous and frugivorous bat species, able to switch between feeding modes based on what was abundant in their environment. Used to non-consensually distribute vaccines, bacteriophages, and similar viral remedies or gene-modifiers to reluctant populations in an age of total biowarfare. The vaccination bat was phased out soon after its initial deployment for the much-less obtrusive vaccination mosquito.

8. Manual Bat: Created due to the collapse of inorganic production capacity - particularly of advanced computer technology - during the Middle Anthropocene, and to ameliorate the problem of large portions of the human population being maimed by conventional warfare or deformative bioweapons. Manual bats resemble spindly, partially-furred hands, and with the exceptionally-sensitive suction pads on their feet and tails will latch onto a wrist (or whatever stump one has) and translate twitches in the muscles and nerves into suitable movements of their own "fingers". Manual bats are able to survive for long periods of time off a solution of high-fructose corn syrup. Widespread use of manual bats is blamed for white-nose syndrome making the zoonotic leap to humans.

9. Bivouac Bat: A quite-agreeable species, symbiotic with many other creatures. It's adapted to the wildly-swinging weather and temperatures of the Late Anthropocene by becoming a living shelter - the dome of its wings strikingly reminiscent of the tents used by baseline humans centuries earlier. Bivouac bats live off the dung and other detritus of the creatures which take shelter within its body, and are able to survive on such a diet by, like tunicates, self-cannibalizing all their unnecessary organs (such as their brain) when they metamorphose into their adult form.

10. The Divine Child of Guidance: Either an incarnate god or an accident of feral transgenesis agents. A miraculous being, in either case. It resembled a human infant with the head and wings of a bat - each of its wing-fingers tipped with a hand. From where it fell stillborn from its mother, each hand was pointed in the direction that indicated the position of something that would prove to be vital for the survival of her group of refugees: a cache of supplies, the base of a remnant of the JSDF, and suchlike. The cult of the Divine Child of Guidance would last for two centuries thence, and divinatory practices used by that cult based on the casting of bat bones and amniotic sacs would last for many times longer.

Wednesday, June 7, 2023

D6x6 Loaded Loxos

Loxos are elephant people... but they have two trunks for whatever reason... you could really just use elephants... just make them smarter...

Click the button below to generate your loxos:

Special thanks to Spwack for the generator generator here: http://meanderingbanter.blogspot.com/2018/10/automatic-list-to-html-translator-v2.html

Elephant, opulent creature, elephant, huge as a hill even when kneeling:
Elephant, robed in honour, a demon, flapping fans of war:
Demon who splinters the tree branches, invading the forest farm:
Elephant, who disregards ‘I have fled to my father for refuge’,
Let alone ‘To my mother’:
Mountainous Animal, Huge Beast, who tears a man like a garment and hangs him up on a tree:
At the sight of him people stampede to a hill of safety:
My chant is a salute to the elephant.
Ajanaku, who treads heavily:
Demon who swallows bunches of palm-fruits whole, including the spikes:
Elephant, praise-named Laaye, massive blackish-grey creature:
Elephant, who single-handed makes the dense forest tremble:
Elephant, who stands sturdy and upright, who strolls as if reluctantly:
Elephant, whom one sees and points at with all one’s fingers.
The hunter’s boast at home is not repeated when he really meets the elephant,
The hunter’s boast at home is not repeated before the elephant:
Ajanaku, who looks backwards with difficulty like a man with a stiff neck:
Elephant, who has a head pad but carries no load, Elephant, whose burden is the huge head he balances:
Elephant, praise-named Laaye, ‘O death, please stop following me’,
This is part and parcel of the elephant’s appellation.
Learn of the elephant, the waterman elephant,
Elephant, honour’s equal, elephant who constantly swings his trunk like a fly-whisk,
Elephant, whose eyes are like water-jars,
Elephant, the greatest of wanderers, whose molar teeth are as big as palm-oil pits in Ijesaland,
Elephant, lord of the forest, praise-named Oriiribobo,
Elephant, whose tusks are like shafts,
One of whose tusks is a porter’s whole load, elephant, praise-named
Otiko, with the mighty neck,
Elephant, whom the hunter sometimes sees face to face, elephant, whom the hunter at other times sees from the rear,
Elephant, who carries mortars, yet walks with a swaggering gait,
Primeval leper, animal treading ponderously.
-Yorùbá Ìjálá (hunter's chant), compiled by Jack Mapanje and Landeg White

D6 These loxos wear
1 hats like wide-canopied howdahs, in which they keep pets such as leopards, young humans, and songbirds.
2 coatings of clay and mud for temperature-regulation, and ear-piercings for ornamentation.
3 brightly-coloured and intricately-patterned barkcloth robes - each pattern belongs to a particular matrilineage.
4 bracelets and necklaces designed as tactile-mnemonic devices, to facilitate sorting through their immense memories.
5 grass skirts, headdresses, and trunk-sleeves constantly re-woven for each other as a social binding.
6 draping cloaks made from the hides and bones of their ancestors.
D6 These loxos' society
1 undergoes periodic senicidal upheavals, whenever its web of unforgotten debts, favours, grudges, and alliances grows too suffocating.
2 practice an inversion of a taboo against naming the dead - they are not only named after their ancestors, but expected to embody them.
3 ties professions strictly to one's clan, forming guilds which are inextricable from heredity.
4 is an absolute monarchy, with the empress's power unbound by law or custom.
5 exists at the mercy of barbarian mercenaries they maintain for being so loathe to lose even one among their slow-growing population.
6 is able to meet its gargantuan caloric intake through food imports extracted from tributaries cowed by the proto-nuclear threat of a loxo thunder-march.
D6 These loxos are most often seen outside their lands
1 as heavy shock trooper soldiers of fortune - and these are often temporarily-expelled young males.
2 as living libraries and librarians both - exerting soft power through the selective archival and presentation of knowledge.
3 as pilgrims to holy sites the rest of the world has forgotten.
4 as exiled criminals with the details of their crimes carved into their foreheads.
5 as Mozi-esque philosophers and siege engineers.
6 as priests of more lawful gods, who appreciate their longer lifespans and generally conservative personalities.
D6 These loxos' settlements
1 tend to be built around great public baths, where they lounge for hours, even days on end to cool off and relieve weight on their joints.
2 are always built either upon solid rock, or upon the wedding cake ruins of many previous such settlements, borne down by the mass of their inhabitants.
3 route footpaths so that traffic naturally compacts rammed earth constructions.
4 tend to be of flimsier construction than comparable human settlements - both because they have less need of shelter, and because it's cheaper and easier to raise up a tent again than a stone building after a loxo's rampage topples it.
5 are menaced by gangs of drunken old women meandering about and sharply critiquing anything new.
6 use buried infrasonic "bells" to broadcast news.
D6 When it comes to magic, these loxos
1 cleave its practice strictly by gender - typically destabilizing magic for men, and constructive magic for women, but in the specifics it's not so clean-cut.
2 have a liberal attitude toward necromancy, at least as applied to shorter-lived peoples - a loxo mage might keep the souls of their human friends in gourds after their death to consult and carouse with.
3 are struggling to retain their own traditions, which serve more of a ritualistic and religious function, over the more utilitarian human schools whose teachings are percolating in from afar.
4 maintain, under the greatest secrecy and security, ancient spells that have been erased from the wider world by both time and less natural forces.
5 forbid the wizardly art of catching spells in one's brain - for their brains are too strong in their retention, and spells trapped therein become strange and inextricable.
6 are able to scrimshaw their tusks into something like wands.
D6 From these loxos might be looted
1 a tonic that induces an artificial musth - territorial berserker rage on demand in a bottle.
2 horn-framed spectacles with fine glass lenses fit to be repurposed for other optics.
3 gold-fringed triptychs painted with astonishing detail and fidelity.
4 cow-hair fly-whisks with handles of ebony bound with brass, backscratchers tipped with lions' claws, and other such luxurious tools to get at hard-to-reach irritations.
5 bows of terrifying size and draw weight - fit for ballistas among any other race.
6 sets of immaculately-glazed porcelain dentures, filling in for teeth worn away by tough vegetation.

Tuesday, June 6, 2023

D6x6 Battle Royales

Click the button below to generate your battle royale:

Special thanks to Spwack for the generator generator here: http://meanderingbanter.blogspot.com/2018/10/automatic-list-to-html-translator-v2.html

D6 This battle royale's participants 
1 are chosen from among the top performers in a militaristic training camp anyone can enroll in.
2 all bear diagnoses of terminal illnesses.
3 are all mandated to have been unemployed for a significant period.
4 are 18 year olds picked by lottery when they come of age.
5 have all public records of them stricken away when they're chosen.
6 are criminals plucked from death row.
D6 This battle royale is held as 
1 an exemplar of the Social Darwinist ethos of its society.
2 modern gladiatorial entertainment for a bloodthirsty public.
3 a substitute for war - each participant or group of participants represent a nation.
4 a test for combat-enhancement drugs which the participants are guineau pigs for.
5 a grand poetic reminder of the centrality of death to life.
6 a mass sacrifice to the ever-hungry Mother Earth.
D6 This battle royale is held 
1 on a platform suspended from a gigantic aerostat.
2 in a world's fair-esque enormous, elaborate, and delicate construction.
3 in the subterranean infrastructural maze beneath a megalopolis.
4 in a city that was abandoned and sealed off after a dirty bomb was detonated in its core.
5 on a deserted island too far off the coast to swim back from.
6 in an overgrown nature preserve.
D6 This battle royale's participants are armed 
1 with axes, swords, spears - medieval melee weaponry.
2 with whatever weapons and supplies they purchase with a limited budget from a catalogue prior to the contest.
3 with cutting-edge experimental weaponry.
4 with mines, poisons, and other weapons of deceit.
5 with nothing - they must fight with their own teeth and nails.
6 with guns and grenades looted from pre-placed caches onsite.
D6 This battle royale is complicated 
1 is one participant being given intimate knowledge of the others' weaknesses.
2 by activists trying to shut it down as unforgivable barbarism.
3 by foreign infiltrators.
4 by rumours of a grand prize hidden within the arena.
5 by extraordinarily wealthy people who've gambled on its outcome throwing their vast resources behind interference.
6 by a bunch of participants banding together and refusing to kill each other.
D6 The reward for the winner of this battle royale 
1 is wealth and privileges beyond their widlest dreams.
2 is nigh-immortality after brain transfer into an artificial body.
3 is executive control over the next contest.
4 is command of an elite army unit.
5 is a harem of genetically-ideal individuals.
6 is the right to kill any single person of their choosing without legal consequences.