Monday, May 27, 2013

Sky Dogs

Dachs und Dachshund by Carl Friedrich Deike

Sky Dogs, Dachskreigers, Dachsblitzen, Lightning Dogs, Vorlhunds. After the Great Burn, some breeds of dogs survived by adapting themselves to life in tunnels, warrens, and ruins. Dachshunds were uniquely suited to making this transition, and exposure to radiation and other mutagens accelerated their evolution into a unique canine sub-species.

Sky Dogs are of similar size to standard Dachshunds and Corgis. Like those dogs, they have long bodies and short legs. They also retain their ancestors' stubbornness and territoriality. They are fearless and often overconfident in facing challengers, and like their ancestors, have insatiable appetites.

Sky Dogs also have a few key differences from their ancestors: their front paws are somewhat enlarged for better digging. And their loose skin has a rather unique adaptation: when they shake their skin, they not only fill the air with dander; their muscles accumulate electrical charge, which can be discharged to shock and temporarily paralyze prey.

In the North American Great Plains area where the Alwyn Campaign is set, the Sky Dogs live in the wild. They hunt rabbits, birds, rats, mice, voles, badgers, prairie dogs and a variety of other small critters during the spring, summer, and fall; they take long naps most for of the winter from the safety of their home tunnels. Experienced hunters, trackers, and delvers soon learn to recognize and avoid tunnels with the tell-tale musk of ozone that the Sky Dogs give off when stirred.

In the decadent and populous towns and cities of the Deep South, Vorlhunds are often domesticated as temple guardians for the Vorlonic Sect. If you see one in their temples, stay clear of it and don't make eye contact; even the domesticated ones such as these are highly territorial and notorious for making precipitous strikes. The Sky Dogs' electrical powers call to mind the legendary Lightning Guns of those ancient sky-gods. Some witnesses even report that the temple dogs seem to understand the temple's liturgical rites, which are conducted in the ancient Vorlon and Minbari languages.


Sky Dogs

  • High Concept: Lightning Dachshunds
  • Trouble: Fearless to a fault
  • Aspect: At home in tunnels and burrows
  • Aspect: Whip smart
  • Aspect: Insatiable appetites
  • Careful: 0
  • Clever: +3
  • Flashy: +2
  • Forceful: +1
  • Quick: +2
  • Sneaky: +1
  • Lightning Dog: Shaking their loose skin generates an electrical charge, which can be directed at prey in a +2 Flashy attack.
  • Escape Artist: Take +2 when using a Quick Approach to escape a foe
  • Earth Mover: Take +2 when using a Forceful Approach to Overcome an Obstacle by digging