Monstrous Physique — Zerg, Part 1

Starfinder has been out for almost two months and we’re just getting the opportunity to see new creatures and aliens with the upcoming release of the Alien Archive. As the resident monster guy, I’ve been excited to take a stab at MONSTERS IN SPACE™! I’ve recently received my subscriber PDF for the book so I rushed to get some new aliens for you. I felt the most fitting aliens for a rush would be the beloved Zerg of Starcraft fame. I’ve expressed my love for these creatures before and now with these new rules in hand, I think it’s the perfect time to bring them to life. All of them. I’m going to do my best to port all the original Zerg units over to Starfinder for use in your home games over the next few entries of MP. Without further ado, let’s get to it!

Before kicking things off, we need a Zerg subtype!

Zerg
Zerg are a collection of creatures integrated into one collected hive mind by a being known as the Overmind. They are capable of metamorphosis into a variety of creatures via a shared repository of genetic information.
Traits: Fast healing 2; Zerg with a fly speed do not suffer the normal environmental effects of being in a vacuum.

Zergling                                       CR 1/2
XP 200
N Small aberration (zerg)
Init +3; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +9
DEFENSE
HP 13
EAC 10; KAC 12
Fort +2, Ref +2, Will +2
Defensive Abilities burrow, fast healing 2
OFFENSE
Speed 40 ft., climb 20 ft.
Melee sickle +6 (1d6+2)
STATISTICS
Str +2, Dex +3, Con +1, Int –3, Wis –1, Cha –2
Skills Acrobatics +4, Perception +9, Stealth +4
Languages Zerg
Other Abilities swarming
ECOLOGY
Environment any
Organization solitary, pair, or swarm (3–12)
SPECIAL ABILITIES
Burrow (Ex) A zergling can burrow into the ground as a standard action. The zergling cannot attack or move while burrowed and is treated as invisible. Any abilities or effects that can see invisible creatures or dispel invisibility reveal a burrowed zergling. While burrowed, the zergling gains blindsight (vibration) 30 feet.
Swarming (Ex) Zerglings are compact, allowing multiple zerglings to share a square without impediment. Up to 4 zerglings can share the same square.

Zerglings serve as the light assault warriors of the Zerg. The voracious zerglings owe their genetic code to the savage dune-runners of the sand-world of Zz’gash. Although fearsome on their own, zerglings work especially well in large groups. They are fond of tearing enemies apart with their sharp, sickle-like limbs and enormous fangs. Their simple genetic structure allows for the creation of massive numbers of zerglings in a short time frame.

Drone                                           CR 1/3
XP 135
N Small aberration (zerg)
Init +1; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +7
DEFENSE
HP 6
EAC 10; KAC 12
Fort +1, Ref +1, Will +2
Defensive Abilities burrow, fast healing 2
OFFENSE
Speed 30 ft.
Melee spines +6 (1d6)
STATISTICS
Str +0, Dex +1, Con +3, Int –3, Wis –1, Cha –2
Skills Perception +7, Stealth +3
Languages Zerg
Other Abilities harvesting
ECOLOGY
Environment any
Organization solitary, pair, or swarm (3–12)
SPECIAL ABILITIES
Burrow (Ex) A drone can burrow into the ground as a standard action. The drone cannot attack or move while burrowed and is treated as invisible. Any abilities or effects that can see invisible creatures or dispel invisibility reveal a burrowed drone. While burrowed, the drone gains blindsight (vibration) 30 feet.
Harvesting (Ex) A drone’s claws are extremely tough and allow it to cut through rock and minerals. A drone’s claws deal damage equal to its spine attack and ignore up to 10 points of hardness when attacking rocks, minerals, and similar materials.

Drones are the hive workers of the Zerg. Their genetic makeup is borrowed from the Gashyrr wasps of Eldershine. Initially, they served the Zerg as resource gatherers, harvesting the natural resources required for the Zerg’s expansion. Over time, they mutated to gain the ability to break down their own genetic coding and restructure it to transform into the organic structures of the Zerg. These structures serve as hatcheries for new Zerg larva, defensive fortifications, and so on. Drones receive their commands from overlords via a psychic connection. Drones are content to stick to their tasks, even ignoring raging combat around them. They will not attack unless command to and usually burrow at the sign of extreme danger.

Overlord                                          CR 2
XP 200
N Huge aberration (zerg)
Init +1; Senses darkvision 60 ft., sensory antennae; Perception +12
DEFENSE
HP 23
EAC 13; KAC 14
Fort +1, Ref +1, Will +7
Defensive Abilities fast healing 2
OFFENSE
Speed fly 20 ft. (Su. average)
Space 15 ft.; Reach 15 ft.
STATISTICS
Str +2, Dex +1, Con +4, Int –1, Wis –1, Cha +0
Skills Perception +12
Languages Zerg
Other Abilities ventral sacs
ECOLOGY
Environment any
Organization solitary, pair, or fleet (3–10)
SPECIAL ABILITIES
Sensory Antennae (Ex) An overlord’s antennae grant it blindisght (psychic) 60 feet. This unique form of sense allows an overlord to detect all manner of creature, living or dead, regardless of intelligence or emotional capacity, even in a vacuum. Additionally, the psychic link is shared with other Zerg within the sense’s area, allowing other Zerg to see what an overlord can see, so long as they are within the sensory area.
Ventral Sacs (Ex) An overlord has a number of large hollows in its body that can house a number of Zerg for transportation. An overlord can load a Zerg within reach into a sac as a standard action. An overlord’s sac is pressurized and sealed for space transport. An overlord can hold up 2 Large creatures, 4 Medium creatures, or 8 Small creatures. An overlord can unload a held creature in any square within its reach as a standard action.

Overlords act as the airborne commanders and transports of the Zerg. The Zerg inducted a species of semi-intelligent, space-faring behemoths, known as the Gargantis Proximae, to their ranks to make use of their heightened senses. Now, as overlords, these creatures coordinate the will of the Overmind and its generals, the Cerebrates, and help maintain control over the multitude of Zerg forces. Their extraordinary senses allow them to even detect invisible or otherwise concealed creatures. Overlords do not have any means of attacking or defending themselves, but their ability to transport other Zerg units means there are fellow Zerg on hand to keep the overlords safe. This means of transportation serves invaluable for space travel as overlords are perfectly designed to survive the interstellar rifts created by the Overmind.

Scourge                                        CR 1/2
XP 200
N Small aberration (zerg)
Init +3; Senses blindsight (life); Perception +9
DEFENSE
HP 13
EAC 10; KAC 12
Fort +2, Ref +2, Will +2
Defensive Abilities fast healing 2
OFFENSE
Speed fly 40 ft. (Su. perfect)
Melee rupture +6 (1d6+2)
STATISTICS
Str +1, Dex +3, Con +2, Int –3, Wis –1, Cha –2
Skills Perception +9
Languages Zerg
ECOLOGY
Environment any
Organization solitary, pair, or swarm (3–12)
SPECIAL ABILITIES
Rupture (Ex) A scourge attacks by exploding in a volatile swirl of internal gasses. If a scourge hits with its rupture attack it is immediately destroyed dealing damage to the struck target and all adjacent creatures. Adjacent creatures can halve this damage with a successful DC 11 Reflex save. A scourge’s rupture deals damage to starships as if it were a starship weapon itself.

Like their kin, the zerglings, scourge are the first wave of attack for the Zerg, albeit in the skies. The exact genetic origins of the scourge are unknown, but some researchers speculate it is actually an amalgam of various genetic samples with little regard for full genetic efficiency. The suicidal nature of the scourge seems to reinforce this theory. Scourge contain catalytic agents that cause them to explode like a living plasma bomb. This explosion is even damaging to starship hulls and tales of starships destroyed by waves of scourge are all too common. The simple genetic architecture of the scourge allow for their mass creation.

That’s it for this week! I’m excited to get a chance to stat up the rest of the Zerg soon as well keep playing with these new alien creation rules. If you end up introducing the Zerg into your game or you have any request for a future Monstrous Physique, please drop me a line at KnowDirection@hotmail.com.

Luis Loza

Luis Loza is a freelance writer from Lincoln, Nebraska. He has written for Paizo Inc, Legendary Games, Rogue Genius Games, and more third-party publishers. His hobbies include gaming both tabletop and video, making jokes, obsessing over time travel, taking naps with Hugo the cat, and walks with Heather the wife. He is eternally plagued with a hunger for tacos.

Gen Con 2017 Seminar Series
Gen Con 2017 Seminar Series

2 Comments

  1. Sebastian Hirsch Reply to Sebastian

    A very promising start, looking forward to some of the higher tier units.

  2. Great start so far! Looking forward to future entries, especially when it comes to the Infestation of humanoids.

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