Terran Fauna

Printer-friendly version

by Tom Verreault

In a spiral galaxy there lies a frontier of stars colonized by humans, dralasites, yazirians, and vrusk. Over the years we have seen creatures from a variety of worlds in that sector but never animals brought with the colonizers. What animals would humans bring with them from Mother Terra? Certainly they would bring some, whether as genetic samples or as live samples to sustain them and to help organize new ecosystems. Below are some suggested Terran stock animals that may have been imported to the Frontier by humanity.

Terran Horse (pure strain)

Terran Horse

TYPE:

Large Herbivore

NUMBER:

Any: 1d5 to 3d10

MOVE:

Fast: 80m/t (gallop),

25m/t (trot)

IM/RS:

7/55

STAMINA:

100 (riding) 150 (hvy draft)

ATTACK:

45

DAMAGE:

2d10

SPECIAL ATTACK:

n/a

SPECIAL DEFENSE:

n/a

NATIVE WORLD:

Earth, Sol System


Brought with the original human colony expedition to the Frontier, horses were first introduced on Clarion and Minotaur. Due to the philosophy of the Frontier Agriculture Resource Mission being based on low impact sustainable farming practices, horses were also introduced on most human agricultural colonies like Timeon, Kdikit, and Rupert’s Hole.

Horses are skittish and nervous animals. They are easily unsettled by new stimuli and most shy away from vrusk when meeting them for the first time. When a handling or control check of a horse is called for an untamed/unbroken horse is -30 to control, a broken horse is -15, and a trained horse is -0.

Gen-Quine (genetically engineered horse)

Gen-Quine

TYPE:

Large Herbivore

NUMBER:

Any: 1d5 to 3d10

MOVE:

Fast: 85m/t (gallop),30m/t (trot)

IM/RS:

6/45

STAMINA:

125

ATTACK:

55

DAMAGE:

2d10

SPECIAL ATTACK:

n/a

SPECIAL DEFENSE:

n/a

NATIVE WORLD:

Clarion, White Light System

The horses that were introduced on Clarion did not do well in its soggy environment. A genetically engineer breed was developed and named gen-quine. These animals are shorter, stockier, calmer, and smarter than regular horses. They have a genetically programmed desire to please their rider/owner and bond closely with humans. A trained gen-quine is +10 for handling or control checks. This bonding feature made the gen-quine the favored mount of Clarion’s Royal Mounted Constabulary; up to 90% of their stable is gen-quine stock.

They can breed with regular horses and this has lead to a long running argument among horse breeders and enthusiasts concerning the merits of the pure bred horse vs. the genetically engineered horse. Some race organizers require genetic testing before a horse can compete.

Note: Many RPG referees allow for horses to act in very unnatural ways. Strange stimuli spooks horses and horses not bred or trained for combat will seek to flee when this erupts. However, in the average RPG, horses are treated like a motorcycle; cycle is “on” when being ridden and “off” when not. Without a doubt horses will not stay “parked” where the players put them without some precautions taken. The gen-quine was engineered to act more in line with how the usual horse acts in a RPG though extreme stress and extreme stimuli will cause it to react similar to a regular horse.

Terran K9

Terran K9

TYPE:

Tiny Carnivore

Small Carnivore

Medium Carnivore

NUMBER:

1d10

1d10

1d10

MOVE:

Medium: 65m/t

Medium: 75m/t

Fast: 85-90 m/t (or V. Fast for racing breeds: 120 m/t)

IM/RS:

7/65

6/60

6/55

STAMINA:

10

20

40

ATTACK:

55

65

75

DAMAGE:

1d5

1d10

2d10

SPECIAL ATTACK:

n/a

n/a

See Subdue Training

SPECIAL DEFENSE:

n/a

n/a

n/a

NATIVE WORLD:

Earth, Sol System

Earth, Sol System

Earth, Sol System

There are innumerable breeds of dog and their decedents can be found anywhere in the Frontier. On high population worlds the smaller varieties are common while on low population and outpost worlds the larger varieties are more common.

The development of new dog breeds has continued in the Frontier. The naming convention for new breeds is to attach the planet of origin to the name of the breed; Minotaur Shepherd, Lossend Sheep Dog, or the Cassidine Chihuahua.

In space, most dogs panic or become distressed in zero g. Dogs living in zero g must be trained and acclimated to that environment or sedated. The Pan Gal Corporation has begun to market velcro booties (10 Cr.) for dogs as well for use in zero g.

Dogs bond closely with their owners and react aggressively if their owners are attacked even if not trained as an attack dog. They have a strong desire to please and make excellent working animals. Certain breeds have strong instincts that have become locked into the breed; shepherding, prey instinct, etc. This makes these breeds easily trained for those jobs. Treat a dog breed that is noted for a particular behavior or locked instinct as having an installed program similar to programs for robots that allow the dog to perform that job or mission naturally even without human direction.

Types of Locked Instincts

Prey Instinct

A strong prey instinct makes for a good hunting dog. This instinct compels them to chase and catch small animals. In terrier breeds it was bred for the purpose of controlling rodents and protecting grain stores. In larger hunting breeds the instinct to kill the prey was sometimes bred out so that the dog will capture the prey but not kill it. The Arabian Saluki is such a breed. In an untrained dog this instinct can cause the animal to lunge for small animals or children making sudden movements.

Shepherd Instinct

A strong shepherding instinct makes for a good working dog well able to manage other domesticated animals. The trained animal becomes an extension of the shepherd allowing him to control the dog by vocal commands and move domesticated animals as if by remote control. In an untrained dog this instinct can lead to biting of domesticated animals.

Protective Instinct

A strong protective instinct gives a dog a powerful sense of protection for the beings with which it lives. Once he becomes familiar with a location the dog will assume guardian ship over it. Dogs with this instinct will bark a warning at strangers and can launch an independent attack. Whether trained or not this instinct can lead to a very aggressive dog. To lesser and stronger degrees all breeds have this instinct and even a passive dog is capable of great heroics to defend its owner.

Training “Programs”

House or Ship Breaking

This training conditions the dog to relieve itself in designated locations.  This training is considered mandatory for dogs that will spend significant time on spacecraft.  Ship breaking includes zero g acclimation.

Attack on Command

This training conditions the dog to attack on command and includes a cease command.

Detect Scent

The dog’s nose is believed to be 40,000 times stronger than the human nose. This training must be done separately for each new scent a dog is to detect. On command a dog will search for a particular scent and “alert” or sit when it’s discovered.

Tracking

This training is a little different from detect scent and is necessary to track a person over distance.

Subdue

This training teaches a dog to bite and hold onto an appendage. The dog will use his momentum and mass to pull the target off balance. If the dog senses the target is not resisting it will not do bite damage to a prone target otherwise the dog does its bite damage every turn until the target breaks free on a strength test (-20).

Service Training

This is a catch all category for training service dogs. A service dog can help a disabled being overcome a disability. Trained service animals cost 5000 Cr.

Cybo-dog

Cybo-dog

TYPE:

Medium Carnivore

NUMBER:

1d5

MOVE:

Fast: 90m/t

IM/RS:

7/65

STAMINA:

75

ATTACK:

75

DAMAGE:

2d10

SPECIAL ATTACK:

Subdue Program

SPECIAL DEFENSE:

Anti-Shock Implant

NATIVE WORLD:

n/a

Developed on Outer Reach, cybernetic dogs are popular with criminals but have proven to be unstable. The animals invariably become vicious monsters due to swelling of the brain around the cybernetic implant. Most people consider the practice of making cybo-dogs to be abhorrent and view the beast as sad and pathetic. Due to the instability problem, many worlds have outlawed them after several owners or innocent bystanders were killed when the animal snapped.

It’s necessary to control them with a remote device (100 Cr.) with the same range of a chronocom. Most Cybo dogs have tracking, attack, subdue, and one detect scent program wired into their cybernetic controls. The usual cost of a cybo-dog is 6,000 Cr.

Generic Domesticated Farm Animals

Domesticated farm animals are fairly generic and harmless but should stats be required a referee can use the table to extrapolate statistics for the animal he is using. Chickens and ducks are tiny. Geese and goats are small. Sheep and pigs are medium. Cattle are large.

Generic Domesticated Farm Animals

TYPE:

Tiny Herbivore

Small Herbivore

Medium Herbivore

Large Herbivore

NUMBER:

Any

Any

Any

Any

MOVE:

Medium

Fast

Fast

Fast

IM/RS:

8/75

7/65

6/55

5/45

STAMINA

1-10

5-20

20-100

50-150

ATTACK:

n/a

35

40

50

DAMAGE:

n/a

1d2

1d5

1d10

SPECIAL ATTACK:

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

SPECIAL DEFENSE:

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

NATIVE WORLD:

Earth, Sol System

Earth, Sol System

Earth, Sol System

Earth, Sol System

Alligator

Alligator

TYPE:

Medium Carnivore

Large Carnivore

NUMBER:

1d10

1d5

MOVE:

Medium

Fast

IM/RS:

6/55

6/55

STAMINA:

120

200

ATTACK:

75

65

DAMAGE:

3d10 (1d10)

4d10 (1d10)

SPECIAL ATTACK:

Ambush - Death Roll

Ambush - Death Roll

SPECIAL DEFENSE:

n/a

n/a

NATIVE WORLD:

Earth, Sol System

Earth, Sol System

On Earth the American alligator was down-graded from the endangered species list due in large part to alligator farms raising them for meat and leather. They are by no means a domesticated farm animal. Not knowing what environments would be encountered out in the stars, the gene banks brought from Earth included genetic samples of alligators. On the planet Clarion, which has an incredibly soggy environment and a high population density, alternative Terran food sources were sought and the alligator became a crucial component in Clarion’s food chain. Naturally some have escaped captivity and colonized large areas of the planet. The success of the alligator in adapting to Clarion’s environment has led to consideration for introducing them on other worlds.

An alligator is an ambush hunter, exposing just its eyes and nostrils from the water and lunging at prey close to the shore. Hiding in the water gives the alligator +20 concealment and one combat round of stunned surprise.  If the initial attack succeeds its jaws will lock and are impossible to force open unless the alligator lets go, is killed or someone near-by has an exo-skeleton. Once the jaws are lock on prey they do an automatic 1d10 damage per turn.

Once the alligator has locked jaws on a victim it will try to pull them into the water for a death roll. A character will be dragged 2m per combat round toward the water unless they make a successful STR check     (-10 for a large alligator and +20 per character assisting the bitten character in the STR check and not attacking the alligator).  In the water the death roll will do 2d10 damage automatically and continue till the prey expires from wounds or drowns. Another character grappling a medium sized or two other characters grappling a large alligator could prevent it from doing the death roll with a bitten character. At any time that the alligator begins to feel truly threatened it will release its prey perform a tail slap on an attacker for 1d10 damage and flee in the water. If grappled it makes a STR check based on its attack roll to break free.

Terran Rat

Terran Rat

TYPE:

Tiny Omnivore

NUMBER:

10-100

MOVE:

Medium

IM/RS:

7/70

STAMINA:

5

ATTACK:

45

DAMAGE:

1d5

SPECIAL ATTACK:

Disease

SPECIAL DEFENSE:

n/a

NATIVE WORLD:

Earth, Sol System

As unlikely as it would be for rats to stow away on spacecraft to get the Frontier it is very likely they were brought as either an exotic pet or potential lab animal. Once in the Frontier they eventually escaped captivity. Through interstellar trade and the increased number of non-government owned starships they have colonized many planets and space stations in the Frontier.

Their special attack is disease transmission. It’s not unusual that they can be carriers of disease (35% of the time or by referee fiat).  Diseases operate on this mechanic: -10/D8. The -10 is the modifier to all ability checks and D is the duration in 10 hour time periods. If followed by a “!” death occurs after the duration expires unless cured. Possible disease carried by rats could have a -5 to -20 ability modifier and last any number of days. The Galactic Standard Day is 20 hours so the duration for a disease lasting 3 days would be 6. It might even be possible for a disease to be particularly long lasting as to have an infinite duration (-15/D∞) meaning the disease must be cured at a hospital.

Dolphin

Dolphin

TYPE:

Medium Carnivore

NUMBER:

2-20

MOVE:

Very Fast

IM/RS:

7/65

STAMINA:

20-120

ATTACK:

75

DAMAGE:

3d10

SPECIAL ATTACK:

Stun (STA for no effect)

SPECIAL DEFENSE:

n/a

NATIVE WORLD:

Earth, Sol System

Dolphins are highly intelligent and social animals making them ideal for breeding and genetic engineering programs to develop them for aid to humans on water dominated worlds. There special attack stems from a swimming charge that rams their solid nose into an opponent at great force.

Ostrich

Ostrich

TYPE:

Large Omnivore

NUMBER:

Any

MOVE:

Fast, 80 kph

IM/RS:

5/45

STAMINA:

100

ATTACK:

55

DAMAGE:

3d10

SPECIAL ATTACK:

Disembowel

SPECIAL DEFENSE:

n/a

NATIVE WORLD:

Earth, Sol System

The ostrich has proven capable of surviving harsh environments that other domesticated farm animals have not done well in making them an exotic meat source on Earth. In the Frontier different programs have introduced them to agricultural worlds as a food source. They are dangerous and use their feet to attack so must be handled with care.

Yazirians have developed a taste for the meat and also developed a sport of slaughtering the animal by gliding attack. Animal rights cadres decry this practice but have had limited success in stopping it.