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Previous Message: Re: Bionoids
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Month Index: November, 1995

From:     "Thomas O. Magann Jr." <tomjr@???.com>
Date:     Thu,  9 Nov 95 18:33:38 PST
Subject:  Re: Bionoids
>Also, BIG difference between a bionoid and the symbiont-host guy...
>"...always led by the individual who started the unit, either the original
>bionoid or its full-blooded descendants.  Bionoid symbionts are welcome to
>join the unit, but must vow to avoid (and avoid infecting)..."

And the original question was about a character finding a blank egg and what
happened on bonding. Which is what was trying to address.

>} The symbiont goes from internal to external covering the body (again based
> Meaning the symbiont (exoskeleton thing) pushes out, this outta hurt quite
>a bit, then again there isn't a very nice and easy way to solve the question
>on how the symbiont comes through.
> Even more complicated would be trying to explain how the crystal eye comes
>to the surface after being burried inside the skull, like its probably in
>contact with the brain... that probably woulnd't be much of a problem but if
>its going to be moving in and out, the brain might just not like that.  Then
>again maybe someone has come up with a theory about the symbiont being
>conserved within the gem, explaining hence how 9-11' of exoskeleton can fit
>in a 5' body, and the essence being switched at change time, so then the
>humanoid is conserved in the gem (as is written in the monster desc), while
>the essence of the symbiont is released "pouring" out of the gem to assume
>its huge menacing form. I dunno, doesn't sound that bad does it?
>It might even have been originally thought that way if you look carefully at
>the last 3 lines of the ecology section:
>"...If presented with a living body, the crystal reduces and restructures
>that body in favour of its stored master, resulting in death (of a sort) for
>the purchaser."

Which is why I refered to the symbiont being the one doing the shapechange.
Based in large part on the changing scenes from the movies.

>} No. the host still controls the body. as I said above. The only control a
>} symbiont seems to exert is alignment and when a change happens.
> Actually it states the alignment changes as soon as the host merges with
>the symbiont, and will remain NG thereafter.
> However it does seem the host has some control over the body, just like the
>symbiont has some control over the host when in normal humanoid form.

Well, that's control of alignment, isn't it?

> Perhaps it *could* be allowed for bionoids to cast always that they can
>manage the components.

You said that it couldn't be done. I said that I *thought* it could and that
*I* allowed it.

>} What it should be, is up to the DM.
> I totally agree, has it not been I who along this matter has been
>supporting DM creativity.

Not entirely, see example above. I've been careful to phrase things "as they
appeared/seemed to me" and why. you made more than one statement saying that
"this is how things are" and with little or no reasons given frequently.
There *is* a difference.

>} The books describe a symbiont which can't
>} bond with, and tries to kill, orcs.
> Actually they describe a bionoid and mention the symbiont.
>"...The egg bursts, attaches to the host, and grows as a symbiont,
>eventually separating and becoming separate, nymph bionoid."
> And I'm sure they dont't mean it becomes a nymph as in small cute female,
>they probably mean nymph in its insect definition.  So its saying most
>clearly that there are both a symbiont and a bionoid. A host with a symbiont
>can only change when danger threatens which would be the case of the
>character of our fellow listemember.  If its a bionoid it changes,
>will?  Geez they left 3/4 of the second side of the page in blank, they
>could've written just that little bit more...
>} Anything else is a potential host, if
>} humanoid.
> I don't think so. =)

I do, if the MC entry is used. "If elves, humans or other humanoid races
touch the egg, it infiltrates the victum creating another adult bionoid." The
only exceptions mentioned are orcs and half-orcs.

> This could actually be used as a way to ensure that
>the host has the health to support the symbiont and stuff like that, so
>maybe the host has some ability requirements to meet... meaning not everyone
>is a potential host.

It certainly could be, if a DM wished, but it probably won't come up often
enough to matter.

>} A bit of an exageration on the Strength, wasn't it?
> What did you expect? did you want me to go weigh some cows? =) Just
>kidding, however 18/00 could easily lift one cow over his head and fling it,
>its not like they are elephants...

Facts and opinions based on them. And frankly I think a cow weighs much more
than the 480 lbs listed as the max press for an 18/00, so I doubt one could
be lifted much less flung.

>} Then come up with a variant system of stats for the symbiont, not a way
>} it to modify some one else stats.
> Stats, if you want to stick to the stats of the sheet, then first off there
>is no indication of dex 25, except for the 6 atks/round but then again
>fighters at 7th level can atk twice/round and its not because they have had
>their dex score increased its due to expertise.  That they have a mv48... so
>do those huge guys...the colossus' and they are sloooow, anyway dex is not a
>measure of how fast or far you can walk its a hell of a lot more than that,
>I wouldn't go for that 25 in dex.

Armor class -3 from "chitinous plates and agility" There are one or two other
places where their great agility is mentioned. Most ther insect races have a
much worse AC, so I assumed, by extrapolation, a high dex. At 25 gives a -6
to AC, which makes for a chition based AC of 3.

12th level and specialization gives 2/1 attacks and lack of specialization
gives 3/2, and a move 4 times normal for most humanoids of their height,
hence the haste effect to double speed and attacks (considering the *average*
bionoid not to have specialization in the special halberd, as some are
probably mages and priests if not an occasional thief.)

> Then STR 18/00 would acquiant for the +6dmg with the polearm, but then why
>don't they have it with their fists which do 1d8

Because the rules state that most creature don't get their Strength bonus
with natural weapons. Not rules lawyering, just consistancy.

>... you *could* add the +6
>to the 1d8 and make the bionoid _even more_ powerful, but it doesn't make
>sense, its best to say that since these halberds of theirs can only be
>wielded by bionoids they must have learnt how to employ them as to do the
>most damage possible.  This is more logical and since the tohit bonus which
>they would have with STR 18/00 is not calculated in the THAC0, cos if you
>look in the DMG 9 is a proper THAC0 for a 12HD monster, hence the 18/00 STR
>thingy doesn't make that much sense.

I've always assumed that to be their unarmed thaco. It's a lot harder to lose
natural weapons than it is to lose artifical ones.

>} As far as why they *might* all be identical, the Lakshu seem to be, and
>say no more, *might* is the key word.

You asked why they should all be identical, I gave a reason they might be
(several, actually), and that I *thought* that it was a fair assumtion that
*at this point in time* they probably were.

>} What the symbiont seems to be is an extremely portable, muscle and speed
>} enhanced piece of armor. In other words, yes it seems to be exactly the
>} situation to me. The armor only works when worn, not carried, just like
>} Girdles.
> Its more like a parasite that lives with you until it has fed off you
>enough to live by its own, as a bionoid.

In a copy of your body with your mind in charge, and making every attempt to
protect that body, to the extent of remaking it if you die, instead of
bonding with a new host. That *is* much closer to symbiosis that parasitism.

> Well I don't go with that idea that the body is kept within the
>exoskeleton, after all if the gem has the power to alter a body into the
>shape, mind and essence of its owner it might as well "swallow" the host and
>"spit" out the symbiont and vice-versa, and if you go with the idea of the
>host being kept within, appart from there being a lot to explain about
>movement and life of the creature and how the host has control and all, have
>you thought about the energy blast ability where the chest opens up...

A set of inner membranes lining that section of plates that are high
explosive when exposed to each other and air? That's what the entry says. And
goes so far as to wound the creature when used.

> You have a good point but... you forgot that they are symbionts, they MUST
>adapt to be able to live with a given host, they must be flexible if you
>wish, and hence they can't be the same.  So if you figure 400 years is
>little for a normal race to evolve, but for a symbiont, an adaptive race...

A creature can have the genetic ability to adapt to a situation or
enviroment. That is different from an ability to modify it's genetic
structure. Adapting to an Elf or Dwarf, dosen't mean acquiring Elven or
Dwarven genetic material. Memorizing a genetic code for later recontruction
is different from changing ones own code. And given the restriction of
humanoid hosts, their ability to adapt is severely limited to a narrow range
of shapes and sizes.

> BTW I am intested in a point that came up earlier, where did you get the
>idea of a bionoid being able to attack upon being attacked as a reflective
>action, you said something to the effect of that

I have no idea what you're refering to and I went thru today's trash file
trying to figure it out. It may have been something I said yesterday.

It might have been when I said the change was triggered by a reflex to
danger. The change, not an extra attack. If the symbiont detects danger it
triggers the change. As it doesn't seem to have amind, just an alignment
(probably as a designed safety feature, by the elves) I said that Meditation
might be used to triggered a fight-or-flight reaction by the body to try to
force the change.

Could that be it? If not, I have no idea. I tend to avoid giving critters
extra powers and wouldn't have done it with these guys if I hadn't made the
mistake of placing a couple of blank eggs in an adventure. On the up side it
seems to make players a little too overconfident, so it became a self
correcting problem.

>  Lastly, why is it the bad guys always have the higher tech and the more
>powerful goodies?  Orcs made those marauders or something like that as their
>war weapon, the damn space marauder is something like 45HD and 1000' big!

And elfs made Living ships, Bionoids, Spirit warriors (2 types) and
Inscetares (which were failures of a sort). Which was more powerful depends
on the overall goal. The elves did win, after all.;-)

Thank You For Your Time,

Thomas O Magann Jr

<tomjr@???.com> or my back-up: <TMagann@???.com>

Previous Message: Re: Bionoids
Next Message: Tanget from Bionoids discussion
Month Index: November, 1995

SubjectFromDate (UTC)
Re: Bionoids    Marco Camacho E.    10 Nov 1995 02:13:05
Re: Bionoids    Thomas O. Magann Jr.    10 Nov 1995 02:33:38
Re: Bionoids    Marco Camacho E.    10 Nov 1995 21:48:45
Re: Bionoids    Thomas O. Magann Jr.    10 Nov 1995 22:53:57
Re: Bionoids    Marco Camacho E.    11 Nov 1995 16:13:51
Re: Bionoids    Thomas O. Magann Jr.    11 Nov 1995 20:21:40

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