2020 has certainly been quite a year. I know a lot of people are looking forward to it ending. Well, here's something to actually look forward to in 2021 beyond just "it's not 2020 anymore." Privateer Press is showing off what they have coming up in the new year.
Among the dread rots of the grymkin, there is one dark soul spoken of in hushed tales meant to terrify misbehaving children. His name is Isaiah, and they call him the Dread Harvester. Myths claim that dread rots visit the wicked and exploitative mortals living in rural areas, claiming them as their own, but the folklore surrounding Isaiah is far more brutal.
It is believed that Isaiah punishes not just the wicked individual but the entire community for allowing such sins to take place without retribution or justice. The stories say entire villages will vanish on those cursed nights when Isaiah and his legion of dread rots come to pay a visit.
Above all things, the grymkin despise Menoth and his creations. When the infernals invaded and the gods of Caen began to unleash their Archons into the mortal world, it is no surprise that the grymkin viewed the Menite Archon with equal measures of contempt and sadistic curiosity. As the forces of Menoth were embattled, protecting the souls of the faithful from the infernals, the grymkin managed to capture a few Menite Archons and drag them down into their nightmarish reality.
Time passes differently on the other side, so no one can be sure how long these Menite Archons truly suffered for—all that’s known is what emerged after: twisted mockeries of Menoth, clad in blasphemous armor, reading heretical versions of the Canon of the True Law, and borne aloft on wings of screaming flesh. Thus, the Defiled Archons have been set lose on Caen to wreak havoc and punish the wicked.
The visionary scientist and entrepreneur Elaine Ways had already been experimenting with technologies that could help save the planet, but the knowledge that a collection of ragtag scientists could transform a human so drastically without major negative side effects drove her to shift her focus. The first Legion of Mutates monster introduced to humanity is the outcome of that fast-tracked experimentation. Named after an ancient king, with armor inspired by one of Earth’s greatest civilizations, Cassander leaped into battle, shocking the world. Part-military leader, part-spokesmodel, the massive lion hybrid is simultaneously saving the planet and selling one of the most revolutionary products ever created. The Means & Ways company needs very little marketing to spread the word of what their product can do, and plenty of customers have lined up to get a chance to take the fight for the planet into their own hands.
The Means & Ways concoctions that can make someone into a half-animal monster the size of a skyscraper are reserved for company employees. However, the company’s consumer products that form the Legion of Mutates brand have the power to temporarily transform a normal human into a hybrid animal creature capable of taking on the lesser minions of the forces seeking the destruction of the earth. Each of these packages comes with a one-year training program membership, the weapons and armor needed while in the form, and a dose of the drug that will turn you into the matching mutate. Proven through rigorous clinical trials to not have addictive chemical properties, the ability to punch a chomper down the block is an exhilarating thing that few customers won’t want to experience again and again.
It would be understandable for anyone living through the Monsterpocalypse to be baffled by the forces arrayed on both sides. Of all those fighting over the future of Earth, the Masters of the 8th Dimension are surely the strangest. No formal dialog has been established with these beings, and their origin is not entirely understood, but their motivations are clear. There was one broadcast across all channels when they first appeared; they explained their goal as if speaking to children. They bear humanity no ill will, but they seek to eliminate the multiverse. The beings who pilot these great constructs that are capable of stepping from one reality to another as easily as you or I would cross the street have tired of the myriad versions of reality and the noise it causes in their senses. They see the Monsterpocalypse as the focal point of much of that disturbance and have started their war with all of reality here. The first shot of that war was fired by The Preceptor, the leader of their forces and the monster sent to start teaching the universe to behave.
The lesser combatants that accompany an attack from the Masters of the 8th Dimension each have a very specific purpose and vanish just as quickly as they appeared when that purpose has been achieved. Voiders are the most common of these strange constructs. They are spheres of rapidly spinning layered material that float serenely across a city and then suddenly spark to life, erasing anything nearby. Rarer sights but sure to be accompanying every attack are the floating pylons called Facilitators. They appear to direct the actions of their fellows and even call some of them into existence.
The Riot Quest chaos continues with the new Wintertime Wasteland starter box! After plundering and looting all they could find in the more civilized corners of the Iron Kingdoms, the heroes (and villains) of Riot Quest are headed to the strange, frozen north in search of more treasure.
The Claiming has come and gone, and Gudrun slept through the entire event in a drunken stupor. Waking up to a ruined world, Gudrun found himself burdened by an unshakable guilt. Had he gone on a bender so powerful it broke the world? With no one around to tell him otherwise, Gudrun swore off drinking and began to wander the wastes in search of answers.
During this journey, Gudrun discovered the wreckage of an old scavenger crew and came into possession of a strange mekamaul arcane artifact. The power seeping from the relic was addictive but volatile, agitating the ogrun even as he grew more reliant on its power. Confused and angry, Gudrun continues his search for survivors…and answers.
Gubbin grew jealous watching his sister, Flubbin, fly above the ruins in her tiny air balloon, mocking him as she dropped bombs on their enemies. Gubbin wanted to fly, too, so he did the only reasonable thing a mostly deranged gobber would do: he asked his friend to fire him out of a cannon.
Dez, being Dez, didn’t mind at all and was happy to help the little lunatic learn the hard way why his plan was a very bad idea. To her surprise, his plan actually worked! The two heroes now work in tandem as Dez loads Gubbin (and all his explosives) into her mortar and fires him above (and into) the heads of their enemies. Somehow, Gubbin always manages to survive, scampering back to Dez for another round.
Vizkoya was once a Kayazy underboss, but the Kayazy have been scattered to the winds since the apocalypse. Without a criminal syndicate to help run, Vizkoya decided to put his skills to use elsewhere. The former underboss is a master of B&E, capable of pulling heists only Lord Azazello would dream of attempting. With his trusty grapple gun and bladed crowbar in hand, there’s no trapped door or locked vault that Vizkoya can’t get into.
Aline Bennet was once a star ace among Rocketman Corps, as well as a warcaster in training among the Crucible Guard. When the apocalypse came, most of Bennet’s Corps unfortunately perished. Instead of drowning in sorrow, however, Bennet buried her comrades and used their scavenged gear to build herself a new suit of armor, a suit that combined her skills as a warcaster with that of a high flying rocketman.
Despite her tragedy, Aline is cheerful, altruistic, and dedicated to making the wastes a safer place. She patrols the ruined Iron Kingdoms in search of evildoers, whom she happily eradicates with her paired flamethrowers. After scouring a region of evil, Aline will land briefly to deliver a wink, a smile, and a thumbs-up before blasting off again.
“Bulkhead” was the nickname given to this Man-O-War Breacher, mostly due to his repeated use of his head as a battering ram during attacks on fortified structures. With no Armored Korps left to follow, Bulkhead began traveling the wastes doing what he does best: breaking things and keeping tinier things behind him from being broken.
It’s a simple life, but it sure does pay well!