Sunday, February 19, 2023

Beastmen: An Introduction to the Brugor

Brugor are voracious, horny and irrationally violent. The worst qualities of man and beast mashed into drunk, shrieking, manic bullies. They are a scourge on the earth.

The Brugor exemplify the bestial excesses of humanity: unrestrained appetites, poor impulse control, and vacillation between slovenly sloth and irrational aggression. A parody of toxic-masculinity. 

This is a tried and true archetype in fantasy (particularly in games) and I can't claim any originality in the basic shape of these adversaries. Like many before me, I take inspiration from Glorantha's Broo and Warhammer's beastmen. Arnold K has a particularly good rendition (here and here).

Brian Froud

What are the Brugor?

The Brugor are an all-male race of horned, hairy, cleft-hoofed, animal-headed humanoids. They breed prodigiously with domestic livestock and can reproduce at an alarming rate. Given access to a heard of cattle, they'll produce a horde in a matter of months. Their young are standing within minutes of birth, and on the hunt shortly thereafter. 

The most common varieties vary with the breeding stock available in an area but the most often seen include bovine (i.e. minotaurs), caprine (goatmen), ovine (rams) and cervine (stags) types. Often an outbreak begins with wildlife, before moving into settled areas and afflicting farm animals. 

They are carnivores. Their preferred feed is humans but they'll eagerly devour any animal they can catch that they can't impregnate.  

While clever enough to use tools, they lack the industry to make them. Any weapons they use more advanced than a sharpened stick will be plundered from humans. 

Herds form around particularly strong individuals and raid together, becoming bolder as their groups grow larger. Fortunately, they are fractious and disorganized so warbands larger than a dozen or two are rare. Occasionally, they'll be forced into the service of a non-brugor leader but it is almost never worth the effort.

Left to their own devices, brugor lack the social organization to form settlements or coordinate anything but the most haphazard raids into human territory. However, their mean little minds are perfectly suited for infection by Baphomet. 

Where did the Brugor Come From? 

The Brugor were created by the Gith many centuries ago. They were intended as a warrior species, to combat the rebellion of the oozes. Their aggressive nature and rapid reproduction were supposed to make them an ideal source of disposable troops but they quickly proved too unruly. 

Their creators abandoned them and they escaped to plague the wider world. Though humans have tried to exterminate them, they have become endemic in many regions. 

Often, they'll be beaten back into the wilderness and disappear for a few generations and then, when the right conditions arise, their population explodes and they spill over into human territory in a fresh outbreak. 

Statue of Minotaur in front of the University of Guanajuato

Who is Baphomet?

glooh on DeviantArt

Baphomet is a powerful Chaos demon, a minor god of the warp. A roiling manifestation of anger, rebellion and revenge. Like other creatures of chaos, he is propelled by insatiable hunger for power. He is fueled by all the hatred and resentment that small minds direct at those more successful than themselves, and the impulse to pull down the achievements of others. In the family tree of the Warp, he's a couple steps down from Khorne.

Reaching out from the Warp, Baphomet has metastasized through the greedy, angry minds of the Brugor. He focuses their anger and weak ambition, raising them from a menace to farmers into a true threat to the cities of mankind.

Where previously the Brugor lacked social organization, cults of Baphomet have formed. They have learned to resent the indignity that men have imposed on their kin, the cattle and herds. The yoke is an abomination and the fenced pasture, an intolerable horror. How dare these weak monkeys eat the noble flesh of the bull? 

In dark ruins, weapons are gathered and more ambitious reavings are planned. Humans are not just eaten, they are put to service first. It's their turn to be branded and bridled, to live in cages and pull carts before populating the meat larders. 

It's no longer enough to plunder a farm. It must be burned. 

The earth belongs to the Brugor and it's time they took it back. 

Not sure where this is from originally, but it's on a few metal album covers

Brugor Stats

Armor Class: 8 (as unarmored)

Hit Dice: 1 (HP4)

Attacks: 1 x weapon, usually 1d4 damage

Move: As unencumbered human.

Saves: 17+

Morale: 6 (10 if they substantially outnumber other party)

Number Appearing: 2d4

Treasure: Custom "Found on body" table. I'll add it shortly. 

Tactics & Notes: 

  • Only attack from a position of strength. Usually, a hail of rocks followed by a rough charge. 
  • No infravision, so they'll always have torch bearers in the dark. 

Adventure Time Stag

1 comment:

  1. I really like the background here. The idea of a Brugor outbreak in otherwise peaceful pastoral lands is actually quite terrifying in a zombie apocalypse kind of way. Not particularly threatening on their own, but can overwhelm quickly in numbers.