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Mutants and Monsters: Top Ten Strange Creatures I Encountered


Welcome back, Cosmic Nomadics! Today, we're diving into the wild and often terrifying world of Jargun-Ba's native fauna. This planet's unique post-catastrophe environment has given rise to some of the most bizarre and dangerous creatures I've ever encountered (which, admittedly, isn’t saying much). Buckle up, because we're about to meet the mutants and monsters that call Jargun-Ba home.

After healing up Ka’vex took me around the area on a little safari, showing me all the strange creatures that inhabit the area. Now, I saw a lot of different animals and, after much deliberation and discussion with Ka’vex, we narrowed it down main ones we thought you should know about. Without further ado, here are the top ten strange creatures I encountered on Jargun-Ba.

Nibbler - We talked about these guys a little bit when I was on Brarcolyn. I had no idea they were native to Jargun-Ba and had managed to get themselves off the planet and breed like crazy on the asteroid colonies.

Nibblers are small, fuzzy little guys that will eat just about anything. I’ve seen them chewing on live electrical wires like it was nothing. Notoriously hard to kill, nibblers are only dangerous in the sense that they wreak havoc on all your stuff.

Danger Level: 1 out of 10 Chewed Up Wires

Ash Wyrm - These things are the largest creatures I saw on Jargun-Ba. They are massively large, with stone-like scales that protect them from rough terrain and predators. Though, I’m not sure what could threaten this thing. Ka’vex estimated the one we saw was twenty feet long, and he said they could get up to twice that big depending on their age. They have large jaws and like to wrap their prey up in their coils and squeeze them to a pulp before swallowing them whole. Almost lost my lunch watching it eat a blisterback. (We’ll get to that one later.

Fortunately, they’re aggressive mostly to their own species and fight over territory all the time. This means they rarely come together to breed, so there’s not that many left roaming the planets.

The juveniles are easier to kill and the Jargunians hunt them whenever they come across them. For one, if they find an ash wyrm near their home they want to get rid of that before it gets any bigger and harder to kill. Second, they have a ton of meat on them and a dead adult can feed a lot of people.

Danger Level: 8 out of 10 Slithering Nightmares

Bristleback - Now, these guys are pretty gnarly looking, and their temper is as bad as their looks. They stand around three feet tall at the shoulder and their backs are covered in needle-like spines that they can kind of shoot off for defense. They are predators, but they do not like it when people get in their personal space.

I wandered off away from Ka’vex when we were out and about to take care of some personal business (Don’t worry, I let him know where I was going. Not going to make that mistake again), and one of them came out of the bushes at me. Launched a handful of pencil-long barbs into the tree trunk I was relieving myself on (Apologies to the tree). It was a good thing I was already on empty, otherwise, I might have ruined my pants.

Don’t ask me how the ash wyrm we saw managed to swallow one of these things without choking. They must have stone throats.

Danger Level: 5 out of 10 Slightly Soiled Trees

Shardwing - Shardwings are like a smaller, flying version of the bristleback. They aren’t quite as large, but like the bristleback, they have other weapons. Their wings are made of a combination of feathers and sharpened plates. Shardwings are big fans of flying at their targets and flinging these plates at them to cut them up and bleed them out. Once the target is exhausted and bleeding out they move in for the kill.

Shardwings are opportunists. They don’t like to work hard for their meals, so they don’t pick fights with something unless they think they have the advantage. I’ve only seen them from a distance so far, eyeing me up like they were wondering how I tasted.

Fortunately, I have scary dog privilege in the form of Ka’vex and they don’t want any part of him.

Danger Level: 3 out of 10 Bloody Feathers

Ember Wasps - These little roaks are more annoying than dangerous. They’re only the size of a BPU, but their sting is enough to make you cry like a little kid. At night they light up the sky like swarms of tiny stars, and that’s how you know it’s time to seek shelter.

Not gonna lie, I got stung by one. I know what you’re probably thinking. What stupid thing did Deno do that got him on the wrong side of the ember wasp? Well, this time it wasn’t my fault.

Around sunset one day, I sat down on a perfectly fine-looking sitting rock. Little did I know, an ember wasp was chilling on that same rock. The roaking thing stung me in the ass and it felt like molten metal got injected directly into the cheek. Ka’vex had to carry me back to camp, laughing the whole time.

Danger Level: 2 out of 10 Swollen Glutes

Gloom Howler - I didn’t think anything would match the cyanovores for sheer, pants-crapping, fear. The gloom howlers proved me wrong.

The gloom howler (howlers for short) are vaguely humanoid in shape. They’re only about four feet tall and have long arms with two elbows on each. The joints bend differently than ours, making them able to move in ways that really escape my ability to write about.

Howlers live in the deep forests of Jargun-Ba, and move through the trees like wraiths. Hunting in packs, they communicate by a variety of vocal cues like barks, grunts, and howls (shocker).

Ka’vex tells me they have long, gnashing teeth and razor-sharp claws. They hunt their prey by herding them, surrounding them slowly, and pouncing on them as a pack. They leave nothing behind but blood and bones.

I have to admit, I haven’t seen a howler yet. To be honest, after hearing Ka’vex’s stories, I don’t really want to. But I have heard them.

One night, Ka’vex and I were sitting in the shelter exchanging stories when the first howl rang out. He went dead silent and put all the lights out in the shelter. Following his cue, I shut my mouth and didn’t move. I could see the fear on his face.

We sat there in silence for the rest of the night. Neither of us slept, and Ka’vex had his hand on the rifle the entire time. Maybe someday I’ll ask him what happened that made him so scared of them.

Danger Level: 9 out of 10 Glinting Eyes in the Darkness

Muck Leech - These creatures are dangerous and disgusting. They’re tube-shaped, squishy creatures that live in swampy areas of the forests on Jargun-Ba. Muck leeches can range in size from finger length to as long as your entire leg. I saw several of them near where we’ve been staying and had the distinct displeasure of watching them eat.

Muck leeches emit a highly corrosive substance that paralyzes their prey and begins breaking down its flesh for the muck leech to munch on. We saw a baby ash wyrm wander into a bog and get swarmed by a bunch of these things. Even with its rock-hard scales, the ash wyrm was overwhelmed as the muck leeches ganged up and covered it. The smell was truly awful as the leeches dissolved its body and began eating it while it was still alive.

Despite the danger, they don’t leave the water and they’re fairly easy to spot if you’re paying attention.

Danger Level: 2 out of 10 Deno’s Throwing Up in the Bushes

Whiptail - Whiptail are nasty little jerks that are crazy fast. The little insect-like creatures hide around rocks and speed out to skewer their prey before dragging them back home to enjoy the meal.

I can personally attest to the pain of the sting as your boy wandered a little too close to one of their dens and got a personal taste of the stinger. Fortunately, whiptails are not venomous, they’re just assholes.

Danger Level: 1 out of 10 Bloody Bootprints

Rust Fang - The rust fang is similar to the whiptail in the sense that they share similar amounts of asshole behavior. Around the size of your hand, rust fangs are, shockingly, rust-colored and have pincers and mandibles strong enough to cut steel.

After my run-in with the whiptail, I became a lot more watchful of things scurrying around rocks and out of holes. They’re dangerous, but as long as you keep an eye out for them and stay away from dens you’ll be okay. But they will steal your food while you’re not paying attention.

Danger Level: 1 out of 10 Lost Lunches

Cyanovores - The only thing I saw that scared me more than the gloom howlers. These are the number one threats on Jargun-Ba. We’ve talked about them in previous blogs, but I think it’s important to discuss them again. Cyanovores are people that have been exposed to and mutated by cyanochaos vapor. Physically, no two of them are the same. Ka’vex and I saw two roaming the plains around the crater; neither of them was the same. One was humanoid with a dozen barbed tentacles growing out of its back; the other had no legs and six arms, like some terrifying insect.

What cyanovores share is a homicidal rage like nothing I’ve ever seen. They were sprinting across the ground chasing after something I couldn’t see, but I could hear them. Their feral screams gave me chills even at a distance.

Danger Level: 10 out of 10 Deno’s Crying in a Corner

So, that’s the rundown on a bunch of the creatures here on Jargun-Ba. By no means is this all of them. Despite what people think, Jargon-Ba is a thriving planet with lots of different plants and animals. Far more than I ever thought there would be. These guys have adapted to something that most places will never have to go through. Because of that, they’re aggressive, territorial, and not to be messed with.

Which of these guys would you like to see in person? Which one do you hope to never see? Leave a comment down below and let me know. Personally, cyanovores and gloom howlers are just the scariest things I’ve ever seen. I still have nightmares about the gloom howlers. But to be honest, I wouldn’t mind seeing a bomb dropped on every ember wasp hive on the planet.

That’s all for today, Cosmic Nomadics! I hope you learned a little something from my misadventures with the mutants and monsters of Jargun-Ba. Stay frosty, watch your ankles, and keep coming back. There’s more to come.

Deno Wynn

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