Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Arden Worldbuilding - Part 5
For those of you who have read The IX, I'm sure you'll have all conjured images in your minds about the soul-sucking Horde. Fiendish ethereal ogres that can strip the life essence from all living things, and the potential from most energy-based weaponry and mechanisms.
where did I get the inspiration for such adversaries?
Well, the first thing that ran through my head was based on this:
Yup a boring old vampire.
You'll be glad to know I never intended to stay on this topic. It was just a starting point for an adversary that was anti-life...and rightly so. Nowadays, vampires are portrayed as something sexy. Something people aspire to be if given half a chance, and I certainly didn't want my antithetical creations to be appealing in any way.
So, after a bit more thought, I added these components:

NOW we're starting to refine the idea a little.

I'm sure all you sci-fi buffs remember the Wraith from Stargate Alantis? They were a superb enemy, a vampiric/telepathic species that evolved when a nasty little life-form called a Iratus Bug fed on humans, absorbing their ability to heal themselves. Over time, they adopted aspects of their hosts' DNA, giving rise to the Wraith themselves.
Aggressive, remorseless hunters, the Wraith couldn't be trusted and viewed others as cattle. What's more, they were hard to kill. THAT was the kind of enemy I wanted our heroes to face...
with a little tinkering.
You see, I wanted something special. That's when I thought of jellyfish.

Insidious and hard to see, Jellyfish are a sneaky predators that inject neurotoxins into their quarry that often induces paralysis. I was drawn to the aspect of the Horde being able to overpower and hold their prey helpless, and as I played with that idea, the bioluminescent variety reminded me of something I'd seen on a number of occasions years ago.

Wait for it....

still waiting?


Who remembers this incredible revelation of the enemy in Forbidden Planet? (One of the all-time best Science fiction movies ever - and made in 1956 no less!) A monster of the ID, revealed in all it's glory under an intense barrage that did nothing to dissuade its efforts.
NOW I was getting somewhere.
At last I had a template in my mind of an ethereal, mostly invisible creature that was able to draw sustenance from any artificial construct emitting energy, and from anything possessing the force of life itself.
I wanted a creature that would get bigger and stronger the more it feasted. More adept and cunning. A creature that could manifest its majesty in a truly horrific way in order to stun its prey and improve the flavor of its meal by inducing a tasty tang of terror.
And that, my friends, is how the Horde were born.

Could you imagine something like that chasing you?
You might do again, real soon.

Until the next time...

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