Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Ice Monsters of Vanth: EC meets Supra-Inframan

Every now and then, while flipping channels at random, browsing used CDs or plowing through my absurdly long Netflix queue, I'll stumble across a pop culture epiphany. The first time I heard Blue Oyster Cult's "Godzilla" was one. Another was when I finally caught on to Arrested Development during its final season. Moments that make me stop and wonder, "Where has this been all my life?"

Spider Style
This happened most recently when I discovered the Shaw Brothers' movie Supra-Inframan a few months ago. As a Hong Kong riff on Ultraman it's hardly an original concept, but it has a vivd imagination all its own.
Princess Dragon Mom in her badass crown Motorcycle chases! Skeleton warriors! Super science vs. alien magic! Witchy women in metal cone bras! A whip-cracking villainess called Princess Dragon
Mom! Fire-breathing laser-shooting Rubbersuit-monster kung fu fight scenes! It was like watching the uncounted happy hours of my youth spent watching monster movies and chop sockey flicks smashed into a single ninety minute ball of awesome.

I'm sure the main monsters from Super Inframan would fit in well with a lot of gonzo SF or science fantasy games -- Gamma World or Mutant Future, an especially wacky Rifts campaign, maybe even Robotech? But I knew from the moment I saw the movie I'd have to stat them up for the land of Vanth. It's only fitting -- I had the same kind of epiphany for Encounter Critical.

After the cut, Ice Monsters come out!


Plant Monster




Monster# ATTATT %
DamHPSaveEdible$ Value
Fire Dragon254%2-812-4828%76%188
Iron Armorbots377%1-6/2-7/
1-10
13-5259%--120
Long-Hair Devil173%
2-1612-3038%84%80
Mutant Drill266%
2-12/1-2033-6070%
6%160
Plant Monster245%2-8
21-4044%50%190
Spider Demon486%1-622-6048%27%210
Witch-Eye125%1-3
8-3225%15%66

Appearance & Special Powers:

Fire Dragon: A tall humanoid in dragonhide armor and horned crown, Fire Dragon attacks with kung fu and breathes fire (every other round, D 2-20, range 30'). He also can use true Invisibility with 97% chances. His armor is equal to Elf Silver Chain but provides a 100% Saving Throw against fire and heat.
Iron Armorbots: A pair of black iron robodroids, each has a tall beaked helm and a spiked morning star in place of one fist. The fist and helm can be shot forth on a long chain up to 30 feet with 55% ranged attack chances and retracted the next round. The fist strikes as a standard morning star. The helm does D 1-10 and can clamp around an arm or leg on a to hit roll of 36% or less (sneak ATT). They melt when destroyed.
Long-Hair Devil: A cackling shaggy creature with long red horns and the face of its last victim staring from its wide open fanged mouth. It is a weak melee fighter (D 1-4/1-4) but shoots double laser beams from its horns for D 2-16. It explodes if immersed in boiling water.
Mutant Drill: A lumpy rock creature with a drill hand and a wrench-like claw. It burrows at its full movement rate.
Plant Monster: One of the most versatile ice demons, Plant Monster is a twisted mutant with vines growing from its head and in place of arms. It can plant itself in the ground and grow into an enormous vine with 100-400 hp and up to eight attacks for D 2-20 each. If it takes 50 hp damage in one round it will be forced to its human sized form. In this form it attacks only twice but can teletransport itself and spit flaming acid (D 5-30, once per day).
Spider Demon: A orange-red spider with three jeweled green eyes. It attacks with a whirlwind of kung fu strikes, and can spit web grenades which capture one enemy in a spherical web. Every three rounds it can also breathe flaming webs for D 2-16. Once per day it can grow into a giant form with 100-400 hp which attacks for D 6-36; large amounts of electrical damage will force Spider Demon back to its normal size.
Witch-Eye: An attractive female with platform boots and long clawed fingers. She has the powers of a level 5 Psi-Witch (ESP & LEA 14). Her Double Secret Eyes, one in the palm of each hand, give her +10% to mentally Command others. If forced into melee she strikes with an electro-stilleto (as dagger + D 1-8 spark)

Witch-Eye
SEE ALSO: Princess Dragon Mom summons the Ice Monsters (and some goobers giggle along)!
SEE ALSO: The entire movie is up on Youtube -- undubbed, with fake subtitles in Spanish -- starting here.

7 comments:

JCintro said...

Very nice. I am a big fan of the Inframan movie (and Witch-Eye too LOL). If this is an actual RPG, i would totally join. If not, it's still cool. It's good to see that there are so many people who like this movie :)

jcintro said...

Hi. Same guy. If this is legit (i certainly hope it is), then please contact me at jamesisrael@yahoo.com. Otherwise, there is a magazine called Oriental Magazine and issue 23 (you could probably find it on ebay) has a 10-page interview about Inframan. Good stuff!

Max said...

Thanks for visiting and commenting! My write-up of the Ice Monsters is for Encounter Critical, which is a gonzo science fantasy pen-and-paper RPG featuring everything from godzillas to wookies to hobbits in jawa drag. Fun stuff. So yeah, it's a real game, and these stats are usable with it. You can download it for free via that link.

As to "joining," it isn't an MMORPG or anything like that (although there *is* a text adventure game!), but there's a link in my sidebar to the EC message list. If you download EC and dig it, come hang with us.

Thanks for the lead on that magazine. I'll check it out if I get the chance.

sirlarkins said...

Love this movie. I saw it a couple years ago with a bunch of friends (we had an impromptu double-feature featuring Infra-man and Sonny Chiba's Karate Bullfighter). A memorable evening indeed.

Max said...

sirlarkins: That sounds like an excellent double feature -- I've had Karate Bearfighter on my Netflix queue for months!

But Bullfighter isn't even available from Netflix, nor MegaForce, Deathstalker, Barbarian Queen and Black Belt Jones...

Pere Ubu said...

Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!

Too. Damn. Kewl.

All these years I've been a fan of Inframan and I never thought to stat it up for an RPG. I Bow to your superiority, sir.

I first saw this at about the age of 10 in a drive-in movie with an equally geeky friend of mine. Impressed? Hell, we set about drawing up plans to BECOME Inframan ourselves!(This all tied in with the space program we were going to carry out, the two of us. Ah, youth.)

Max said...

By my green candle, it's Pere Ubu hisself! Pschitt!

I re-enacted enough episodes of Unltraman and movies from the Saturday afternoon Kung Fu Theater, but it never occurred to me it could be a vocation. I always wanted to be a zoo-keeper.

Thanks for the comment!