The Black Plague «Firebugs»

Reported By: unknown contributor in Dragon Magazine 108

Role: Monster
Base Stock: Black hearth cricket

MCC Stat Block: Firebugs 'The Black Plague' (2d8 (9)): Init +3; atk bite melee +6 (1d10+4) and squirt +2 (1d5, 8'); AC 16; HD 6D7 hp 24 each; MV 15' or Fly 313' ; 1d20; SV Fort +0, Ref +0, Will +0
Mutations: Absorption (heat), force field generation, heat generation (variant), heightened vision, taller, and a unique mutation (incendiary spittle)

Number Appearing: 2d8
Morale: 6
Hit Dice: HD 6D7
Armor: 6 (AC 16)
Size: Large 3m Long

Movement: MV 15' or Fly 313'

Attack: Bite melee +6 (1d10+4)
Squirt +2 (1d5, 8')

MS: 11   PS: 21
IN: 8   DX: 11
CH: 6   CN: 12

Frequency: Rare
Organization: Swarm
Activity Cycle: Night
Diet: Grasses and Grains
Habitat: Mostly cultivated fields, as well as meadows and grasslands
Tech Level: 0 - 0
Artifacts: Unknown

Description (Initial Observations): These vicious and destructive pests delight in ravaging fields cultivated by humans and humanoids. They attack anyone or anything that tries to interfere with them. They can bite, but more frequently they spit a glob of highly volatile, Greek-fire-like liquid that ignites on contact with open air. It hits any unob- structed target within 8 m and burns for 2d6 damage (unless the target is immune to heat and fire). It continues to burn for 5 Action Turns, doing 2d6 damage per turn, unless it is smothered out. To do this, the creature must roll on the ground for a full Action Turn; water (excepting full immer- sion) or cyrokinesis wont put out this fire. Firebugs can spit this liquid once every four Action Turns. The bodies of firebugs are also very hot, and any creature touch- ing them takes 1d4 damage the extent of their heat generation powers.Most communities plagued by firebugs resign themselves to the loss of part of their grain. But firebugs are destructive by inclination as well as by ecological niche. They sometimes burn a field or attack a harmless passer-by out of sheer vicious- ness. They are also extraordinarily vindic- tive and typically respond to the loss of a fight by burning down the nearest village. Firebugs are also arrogant and seldom retreat from a fight. When they do flee, they are nearly impossible to catch, even though flightless, as they put up their force fields and hop 50 m in one jump, 5 times per Action Turn (ten times at fast speed).Firebugs are glossy black in color, with orange-red eyes like burning coals.

Reactions: No known interactions

Behavior: Behavior modeling incomplete

Behavior: Behavior not recorded

Society: Anthropological studies incomplete