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Step 1: Control Snakes; Step 2: ???


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To my horror, GM'ing has taught me that I'm actually not all that creative. Case in point: this VIPER plot.

 

After a series of mishaps involving an impromptu tag team formed with an undercover VIPER wrestler, my players let a notable scientist get kidnapped.

 

Using the scientist and his research, VIPER has seemingly gained the ability to control serpents both large and small. Buuuuut, now what?

 

The only thing I can think of to test their experiments involves assassination.

 

Does anyone have any ideas for making better use of these serpentine fellows?

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1) VIPER uses snakes to steal things, since they can crawl away to places people can't follow.

2) VIPER uses snakes as little assassins, supercharging their bite

3) VIPER uses snakes as spies.  They crawl in places, hide, and transmit what they see and hear

4) VIPER uses snakes to spread terror ala Hitchcock's Birds then demands ransom

5) VIPER uses snakes to study a special series of venom weapons and bombs, enhacing their arsenal

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Step 2: Get a Plane... :P

 

I think a lot depends on what you mean by, "control." Are we talking just general commands, to direct the snakes to targets and have them do what comes naturally? Or can their actions be precisely controlled by a guiding intelligence? Perhaps even seeing what they see?

 

Did you see the movie, Ant-Man? If you did, you have an idea of what can be accomplished by even tiny animals, when directed by a human-level intellect. Snakes can get into spaces and through openings that humans can't; and they don't show up on thermal imaging. Some have venom that can kill a grown person in minutes; others are strong enough to crush a person to death in the same time. With sufficiently exacting direction, they could reconnoiter, assassinate, steal, sabotage, carry messages or equipment to people. They also absolutely terrify many humans, so are useful for starting mass panic. ("Snakes! Why did it have to be snakes?")

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1) VIPER uses snakes to steal things, since they can crawl away to places people can't follow.

2) VIPER uses snakes as little assassins, supercharging their bite

3) VIPER uses snakes as spies.  They crawl in places, hide, and transmit what they see and hear

4) VIPER uses snakes to spread terror ala Hitchcock's Birds then demands ransom

5) VIPER uses snakes to study a special series of venom weapons and bombs, enhacing their arsenal

Step 3, PROFIT!

 

Lucius Alexander

 

Step 4, snakes get stepped on by palindromedary

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Now that VIPER can control snakes, they finally have a use for all of those genetically-engineered giant snakes they've got in storage.

 

Extortion: corner the market on a rare anti-venom, then send mind-controlled snakes (of the appropriate breed) after prominent/wealthy figures and their families, sell them the anti-venom for 5000x the previous rate

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VIPER uses snakes as little assassins, supercharging their bite

This will probably be the go-to if nothing else. "Oh no! Mr. Politician, Mr. CEO, and Mr. Police Chief have all turned up dead from a snake bite!"

 

VIPER uses snakes to spread terror ala Hitchcock's Birds then demands ransom

This will most likely also happen, just because snakes. Lots of snakes. "Oh no! Grandma Mildred has been eaten by that giant anaconda!

 

@steriaca

King Cobra hasn't been introduced yet, but this would be something interesting to do in the future.

 

@Lord Liaden

I'm not sure yet about the method of control, though I'm thinking general commands for the larger serpents like anacondas, and guided intelligence for the little guys. Also, thank you for the information! That's some good stuff to think about.

 

Try to increase the snakes intellect. Mutate them so they have wings.

These are definitely part of the plan. "Oh no! Downtown has been overrun by mutant flying snakes!" (All I picture is the scene from Jurassic World where the pterodactyls break free and terrorize the guests)

Attempt to summon Quetlequatl
This wasn't part of the plan, but it is now.

 

Have the epa declare several of them endangered and arrest the heroes for attacking the snakes.

Oh man! I would love to do this! If I didn't know my players would see this as a troll worth gutting me for, I would totally do it.

 

Extortion: corner the market on a rare anti-venom, then send mind-controlled snakes (of the appropriate breed) after prominent/wealthy figures and their families, sell them the anti-venom for 5000x the previous rate

This is great! I may do this instead of straight assassination.

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Some uses of snakes.

 

Bugging Skill with IAF: Radio on Small Snake.

 

Entangle 2d6 DEF 2, Takes No Damage (+1/2), AE 3"r (+1), No Range (-1/2), OIF[immobile]: Pit of Snakes (-1 1/2)

 

RKA 2d6, NND [Force Field, Damage Resistance, or Immunity: Snake Venom] (+1), Linked to Above (-1/2), No Range (-1/2), OIF[immobile]: Radio Controlled Snakes in Pit (-1 1/2)

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I feel sorry for the rat populations in the city, should that many snakes be in a relatively contained space.

 

Just imagine the rats fleeing areas of the city because of the huge numbers of predators. Sounds like a potential story to me.

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I'm envisioning a nice summer day at the zoo.  Kids enjoying the Reptile House, thinking that the snakes are all safely behind thick glass.  They couldn't possibly coordinate their actions to get out and corner a bunch of screaming kids, could they? 

 

What is the superhero going to do when he sees little Timmy with an anaconda wrapped around him while a rattler's fangs are tantalizingly close to Timmy's exposed neck?  With poor Sally in a similar situation?

 

And while the heroes are tied up at the zoo, squads of VIPER agents attack the police HQ to steal weapons and evidence / free jailed compatriots.  And why not have a bunch of snakes there as well to take on the cops?

 

Do the heroes leave all those poor threatened kids at the zoo to stop the obvious real objective of VIPER? 

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You could do something like a dream I had.  I had a dream where snakes were living under my skin.  It did lead me to a character concept where a "ninja" was used as an experiment in a VIPER ritual.  Where he and a bunch of snakes were mystically bonded.  Where he can "release" them to do whatever (attacks, reconnaissance, whatever).  They'd be mind linked to him, of course. I also imagine seeing a bunch of snakes "spewing" out of his hand which is both disgusting and awesome.

 

Note:  Now that I think about it would have some similarities with the bug ninja guy from Naruto.

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You could do something like a dream I had. I had a dream where snakes were living under my skin. It did lead me to a character concept where a "ninja" was used as an experiment in a VIPER ritual. Where he and a bunch of snakes were mystically bonded. Where he can "release" them to do whatever (attacks, reconnaissance, whatever). They'd be mind linked to him, of course. I also imagine seeing a bunch of snakes "spewing" out of his hand which is both disgusting and awesome.

 

Note: Now that I think about it would have some similarities with the bug ninja guy from Naruto.

Reminds me of a snake version of the Marvel Comics villain Swarm, or that bully guy who ate the totam spider which bit Peter Parker and eventually became a living mass of spiders under his skin (again...Marvel).

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There was an Avengers comic a few years back where Giant-Man, Silverclaw (Tigra by another name), Ms. Marvel, She Hulk, and Scarlet Witch were in South America investigating a cult and were attacked by them.  The cultist magically transformed into snakes (Entangle w/Drain STR) and then were Gassed (Linked EB NND).

 

They are so versatile.

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  • VIPER uses snakes to obtain various types of venom for weaponized VIPER agent uses. Examples include but are not limited to:

    • neurotoxins for use in paralytic darts,

  • cytotoxins for use in necrotic darts, and

hemotixins for use in clot-inducing or clot-preventing darts.

VIPER uses snakes to arm its standard agents with easily carried and concealed followers trained to function on demand while operating on their own speed/initiative.  Examples:

  • boa constrictors for entangles,

cobras for venomous attacks,

​etc.

VIPER uses snakes to genetically enhance its elite agents.  Examples of enhancements include but are not limited to:

  • venomous bite akin to vipers,

extreme strength akin to constrictors,

regeneration a la the shedding of skin,

taste as a targeting sense (goes with forked tongue),

cold-blooded nature (i.e. temperature-based life support effects),

gliding a la flying snakes, and

flash attack a la spitting cobras.

VIPER uses snakes for base defenses.  Some bite for damage, others paralyze with venom, still others constrict for entangle effects

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If you want something more discrete the peide piper gambit might work using your herpetogical control overwelm a city with snakes then offer the services of hamlyn and piper humane pest removal collect a nice fat government check that you can then use to buy legit businesses to launder your illegal earnings. rinse and repeat.

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Well I have good news and bad news. The good news is it's just a thread. It's not real.

 

Uhm the bad news.

 

Uhm.

 

 

...

 

The snakes under your bed are real.

I've had that nightmare.  Under the bed, in the bed, coming out from the walls, dropping from the ceilings . . . woke up just after midnight a couple of weeks ago in a cold sweat from one of those.  Fortunately, I had to be at work at 04:00 that morning so I only really lost a couple of hours of sleep.

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I shouldn't have read this thread.  Thanks for the nightmares I'll be having the next few days, guys.

 

Heh, I hate to say it, the dream I mentioned isn't even near the top of my nightmares list.  Though, it is hard to say, though, as I have a tolerance built up for nightmares.

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