I’ve been sculpting robots and a new pulp creature for the Retro Raygun range, but I recently took a break to make production molds of some masters that were cast a while ago. For my upcoming prehistoric fantasy game, Primal Dawn, I have created a number of bizarre races for the game. One of my favorites are the Vardu (plantmen.)
Here is a description of the various troops of the Vardu:
Xenophobic and defensive in nature, the humanoid plant race of the Vardu rarely travel far from their native rainforests. The Vardu are not one species of plant-being, rather they are a variety of different species linked by collective intelligence of their surroundings. Silent yet ferocious when provoked, the Vardu use dried organic weapons from the forest—large seedpods on rigid stems become clubs, enormous dried leaves become blades. The humanoid Vardu warriors tower over most enemies on the battlefield. Their gnarled bodies are a mass of tendrils formed into strong sinews. A thick wooden hide usually protects their central bodies and their limbs and body often sprout incredible sharp thorns. Their blossom-like “heads” contain all of their sensory and sexual organs and are often opened dramatically in battle to enhance their awareness, aid in communication, and frighten invaders. The Vardu reproduce by budding, and small sproutlings emerge from the leaf-like structures that project from their backs. These sproutlings finally drop to the ground and gain mobility, easily swarming invaders. The exotic Vardu elders are rather exotic and are easily identified by an abundance of brilliantly colored, feather-like petals sprouting from their heads and backs. Covered in sharp spines and rough barky armor, the Vardu blood thorns are the most dangerous close combat warriors of the forest. Breeds of smaller, muscular, carnivorous quadrupeds known as maw hunters serve as the “hunting dogs” of the Vardu. Their strong limbs allow them to overrun their enemies and their gaping maws can make short work of their prey. Ambling quietly along the forest floor, the sporers are bloated multi-limbed fungi with massively oversized heads. A distinctive whoosh sound can be heard as the plant-thing launches a powdery cloud of spoors, choking all non-plant creatures in the vicinity. These floating clouds of spoors are also used to cloud enemies vision, thus allowing the Vardu warriors to advance undetected.
These figures represent the Vardu sproutlings. The figure with the closed flower head stands 20mm tall; the figure with the open flower head is 24mm tall.
Although the Primal Dawn rules are not slated for general release until summer/fall 2008, I plan to release a few of the figures from the range as they become available. When the Hydra Miniatures website and webstore are finally online, you’ll be able to buy these little critters. They’d be perfect for pulp /VSF games or as familiars for a fantasy druid.