The myklian is a fearsome beast, some form of large lizard or amphibian that usually travels on four legs, but sometimes stands upright on two legs. It has a short, stubby tail which is triangular in shape and covered with a luminescent, chitinous plate. Hard scales cover the rest of the beast's body, except for the soft underbelly. Bony spikes and knobs guard the beast's joints. The coloration of the myklian species ranges the entire spectrum, red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple.
Any attempt to skin or search a myklian will damage your right hand, up to a level 2 wound.
Additionally, myklians cannot take damage from a "closed fist" attack; this will only cause a wound to appear on your right hand.
Myklian are immune to cold. Dark vorteces can wander into the cavern, which are immune to most forms of attack.
Attacking a myklian may have a small chance of disarming one's primary weapon as it strikes a "bony protrusion" on it:
You swing your old wakizashi at the red myklian. The weapon strikes one of the bony protrusions on the myklian's body and it is wrenched out of your grasp! The old wakizashi falls to the ground! Roundtime: 5 sec.
Myklians will spawn in multiple different colors. "A young myklian" tends to spawn on occasion, whose attacks are slightly weaker than other myklians. All of these creatures are the same, for the purposes of Adventurer's Guild bounty hunting. The red side of spectrum represents the most common and lowest-level myklians (other than young); purple myklians are somewhat rare and have the highest level, statistics, and skin value. Red myklians, the most common type, are level 40. Higher energy parts of the light spectrum correspond to higher level myklian.
Myklian scales were once exceptionally valuable. Their value has been decreased, but they are still quite valuable for a good skinner. Just 1x Survival and 1x First Aid training can yield around 1400 silver per scale if the area has not been recently overhunted. It is important to heal down to minor hand scars before each skin and search, in order to continue to skin well. Non-empaths are advised to buy a large bundle of ambrominas leaf before a trip to the myklian cave. (The "perfect myklian belly scale" they leave behind when looted is not accepted by the furrier.)
Myklians will occasionally emit ice flares with their attacks, which can potentially be deadly:
A red myklian stomps at you with its foot! AS: +241 vs DS: +169 with AvD: +29 + d100 roll: +22 = +123 ... and hits for 4 points of damage! Glancing blow to your right leg! ** You feel an icy blast from the red myklian! ** ... 35 points of damage! What was once your right leg seems to have disappeared! You fall screaming to the ground grasping your mangled right leg! You are stunned for 8 rounds!
Myklians have the following ambient messaging:
You hear a low growl and feel a sudden chill as a red myklian arrives. An orange myklian growls and rakes the ground with its claws. The sound causes the hair on the back of your neck to stand up.
Behind the Scenes
Uthex Kathiasas named these creatures "kiskaa raax" (Iruaric: "chilling claw"), in reference to their ice flares, and became myklian after the I.C.E. Age. "Myklian" is an anagram of "many ilk", which is probably intentional, given their diversity of colors and forms and the language games of The Broken Lands. They do not seem to be based on a Rolemaster extra-planar entity, and might have been indigenous to The Broken Lands or else a novel invention. The Dark Shrine had a toad shaped basin, possibly resembling these amphibian-like creatures. They might be an allusion to the "toad-things" from "The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath" like other elements of The Broken Lands, reminiscent of the bounders and kappas of the Coastal Cliffs possibly alluding to other Lovecraft stories. (In this case "The Doom That Came to Sarnath" and "The Shadow over Innsmouth".) The "bizarre form of the many basins and braziers" in a temple of the Old Ones of Tsath comes from "The Mound".
The toad braziers might refer to the sleeping toad god Tsathoggua. The brass gong next to them is sounded in times of doom from Kadath in the extended Cthulhu mythos. In this case the wife of Nyarlathotep is driven out in the doom of Hyperborea and replaced with Tsathoggua worship, who had arrived from first stopping in the dreamlands of Saturn which in turn is reflected by the Traag. More narrowly, it may play "The Devotee of Evil" off the evil presence, where gongs on a brass tripod are used to manifest cosmic evil as a triangular shadow freezing the witnesses solid like Satan. Within Lovecraft itself the dreamland vaults of Zin correspond to the huge cavern in the Dark Grotto, while the material form of it reflecting Shadow Valley from "The Mound" depicted temples of Tsathoggua and had toad idols. "The Horror in the Museum" is referenced below The Graveyard and included wax sculptures of Tsathoggua next to a night-gaunt which can explain the toads with the vruul.
The toad-things resided on the moon in the dreamlands, as opposed to that of the waking world, and were allied to the pharaoh demonic Other God Nyarlathotep. The dreamlands were an associated parallel but separate reality. While the toad-things represent one side of their creature aspect, the ruins in the other story were from a dead race, which had been reptilian quadrupeds and so explaining the lizard aspect. The "toadstools" in the huge cavern are a play on words, linking the fungous spires to the Enchanted Wood. There may also be influence from "The Fall of the House of Usher" (where the gong would be the brass shield) in the fungi, tarn, and eye shaped windows of the Dark Shrine. Shadow Valley has other counterparts. Myklian are not considered extraplanar beings in GemStone IV.
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