The Zombi and The Skeleton
The zombi and the skeleton are two creatures most commonly created by necromancers. They are both created using the same sort of vile magick, with the only difference being the level of decomposition present in the walking cadaver. Zombis can even be made from living people, though once they are under the necromancer's control, there is almost no way to get them back.
The consciousness of a zombi or of a skeleton is under the control of the necromancer, and thus, these creatures have no amount of self preservation. If they catch on fire, they will keep on kicking until the last piece of ash is blown away in the wind. If all that is left of a zombi is a pile of viscera, the bloody pulp will ooze along, still going at its task. Even if the brain of the zombi is removed from its body, the necromancer will retain control of both parts, and you have just made a slow cerebral ooze and a stumbling walking corpse. The only way to defeat a zombi or a skeleton is to completely destroy every single part of it. Just getting it down to 0 HP isn't going to cut it.
Even though the necromancer has control over the body of the undead creature, occasionally the real consciousness of the body will break through. You might hear it scream for help or suddenly run away from you before walking back at you. If the necromancer dies, the zombis and skeletons that now control their own bodies will try to enact vengeance on the bokor, and might burn the body, eat it, or simply tear it limb from limb. However, they are still definitely affected by their time under the control of the wizard, and so they have to resist every urge to devolve into a mindless walking corpse.
The Ghoul and The Ghast
Ghouls are created by a terrible plague that makes you into a horrible cannibalistic monster (called the Cannibal's Illness). It slowly makes you into an almost human monster that only wishes to gorge itself on meat. Your eyes glaze over and you forget about who you once were. You become an immortal abomination filled with disease and decay, and every injury just causes you to become more monstrous and mutated.
Something cuts off your arm, and you regrow an arm that is almost a good arm, but not quite. Meanwhile, your arm that was once connected to your body grows into a smaller ghoul that just has a huge arm. Both of these monsters are you. If you are cut in half, each side regrows the other side, but it might be covered in tumors or eyes or teeth. Your heart is ripped from your body, and it just grows spindly legs from your veins, and crawls on the ground, spitting ghoul blood on everything. A new ghoul might look like someone who just needs a shower or a bandage or two. An old ghoul is covered in tumors and veins, with two blind heads and a mouth filled with almost shark-like teeth.
|By Jonathan Wojcik of Bogleech, for his upcoming game Mortasheen!|
Ghouls might remember a thing or two of their life as a human. They might remember taxes, or the king, or they might remember children. They might even remember how to make them! If a ghoul tries to reproduce with another decaying abomination, it will probably work. It won't produce a normal baby, and it won't produce a really small ghoul. No, reproduction between these undead monsters creates the strange creatures known as ghasts. These monsters might look like a deformed baby, or they might look like a huge embryonic dragon-like beast. Crawling mountains of conjoined fetuses, hive-like infants filled with parasitic flies, anencephalic gremlins, and even more diversity of these undead descendants are produced when two or more ghouls try to make a child.
|Also by Jonathan Wojcik for Mortasheen|
If you have contracted the Cannibal's Illness and are not yet a ghoul, you are what is called a half-ghoul. You will forget you family and friends and your life before you started becoming an undead monstrosity. You will be overcome with the urge to eat constantly, and only ever eat meat. Plants and other foods will turn to sand, mud, or dirt on your tongue. Slowly, you will lose all thought beyond eat, and eventually you will become a ghoul.
|Also for Mortasheen|