To celebrate Horror Flora‘s four year anniversary, I’ve prepared a special treat for you: a bestiary for a non-existent monster catching game inspired by this website’s Iconic Characters of Horror Fiction essay series. Welcome to 4 Horror War, where people raise different Archetypal Fears – “Arkies” for short – into powerful monsters, and then battle each other to prove the superiority of their chosen fears. I’ll be posting a different Arky family each day from now through Halloween – today’s Arky family of the day belongs to Atomic Horror, THE KAIJU FAMILY!
Now, before we dive in to the gritty details, an explanation/reminder of how this non-existent mons game works. Unlike Pokemon, evolution is not necessarily an upgrade – in other words, the first stage of a given family is generally on par with the most “advanced” stage. Evolution reshuffles stats rather than straight-up improving them, allowing the Arky to function differently on the team.
In addition to giving you alternate options/strategies for a given Arky, the family tree of each Archetypal Fear is sort of a huge meta-reference to how actual horror archetypes have, well, evolved in fiction. Though I’ve had to stretch now and then with the families to make every monster I wanted to make fit, the meta commentary is more or less accurate enough to make my inner horror nerd happy.
Ok, enough pre-amble, let’s dive in:
Born in the heart of a nuclear blast, Gojiller is a radioactive leviathan awoken from its undersea lair to wreak havoc upon humanity. Though its low speed stat is a glaring weakness, its high defenses, health pool, strong close range combat skills and deadly long range fire breath weapon make it a versatile fighter that explains why some call it the Baron of the Behemoths.
After dying in battle four times, Gojiller can evolve into Garagon. Trading its long range weaponry for even greater defense, this monster can withstand a great deal of punishment while dealing decent close range physical damage to its enemies.
After killing four foes in battle, Garagon can evolve into Ramrynk. Inverting the stat change between Garagon and Gojiller, Ramrynk regains and strengthens the long range breath weapon of Gojiller while losing a vast amount of defensive power in turn, making it a deadly but vulnerable combatant capable of both long and close range combat.
If taken to the ruins of an undersea civilization, Gojiller can evolve into Kamegary. An explicitly heroic monster, Kamegary’s fire breath is less potent than its predecessor’s, and its defenses are only slightly above average, but it boasts an enormous health pool, allowing it to take a beating far longer than most of its enemies can.
If Kamegary’s owner regales it with a beautiful song, it can evolve into Gothura. Though appearing to lack many strong weapons of its own, this moth goddess excels at turning its foes’ attacks against them, reflecting arcane attacks with its shed scales and infecting them with a poisonous power that hurts them whenever they launch a physical attack. Gothura’s high health pool and defenses make it difficult to kill, and it has the special ability to take attacks that were meant for its allies.
If encouraged to view itself as a godlike figure, Kamegary can evolve into Kongoking. A powerful close range brawler, Kongoking can distract foes with the beautiful blonde bombshell in its hand, sucker punching them while they hungrily regard the tiny human.
If told to indulge its worst impulses, Gojiller can evolve into Doragan the space monster. With laser-shooting eyes and a buzzsaw in its chest, this dirty fighting extraterrestrial dragon is a force to be reckoned with, though its special ability to briefly abandon the field and allow its allies to take hits meant for it means it often struggles to work with its team-mates.
If exposed to toxic waste, Doragan can evolve into Polupuke. This mass of stinking slime spews toxic acid constantly emits a foul smoke that poisons any Arky on the field, allies included. Though its high health and defenses make it hard to kill, it is notably weak to arcane attacks.