Well, it takes all kinds to make a world, but the world bein' as messed up as it is since the Big One, most of what you meet's gonna be the dangerous kind. So as fair warnin' to you all, this section profiles some of the folks that make The New West such a wild place.

LAWMEN:

Sheriff Leadwall : Sheriff Coleman : El Jefe Mysterioso
The Judgement Bugs
: The Bileen Lawbots

The Law. Now there's something that's got a lot of definitions in the anarchy of Post Apocalypse 'Merica. How the idea of public order is upheld runs the entire gamut of the good, the bad, the ugly, and the downright scary. Most of the time civil peace is held thru strength, but there's a lot of methods that are just as effective, and sometimes, if the man (or whatever) with the star is of the right sort, justice can be served as well.

The only real common thread that unites the hombres profiled in this installment of the Rogues Gallery, aside from the badge or whatever symbol of authority they carry, is that they're tied to communities and generally don't rove around much. So if you're gonna cross any of these folks, remember that they've got a lot of backup, and can determine how well your visit to their territory goes.

PROFILES:

Sheriff Tobias Leadwall
Mutant Human

Hit Points: 55
Ranged Thac0:
9
Melee Thac0:
10
Mental Strength:
15
Constitution:
13
Mutations:
Physical: Multiple Body Parts (6 arms), Duality
Mental: Intuition

Armor:
Ballistic Protector Suit (AC 4)
Weapons:
4 .45 Automatics (2d8), 2 .357 Magnums (3d8), 2 .45 Derringers (2d8)

Sheriff Leadwall is as straight a shooter as they come, and that's pretty impressive considering the amount of shooting he's capable of doing. Those who've seen him uncork are witness to a hurricane of flying lead and falling bodies in all directions. All told, tho, the thunder of his guns doesn't ring out much in the sleepy cattle town of McQueen's Springs. Leadwall's a quiet man, slow to anger, and very deliberate in his actions. Some folks gossip about the wilder days of his youth, and the fierce name he made for himself as a gunfighter and mercenary, but he'll tell you himself that those days are long past. He's since settled down in his job as sheriff, and he takes his role as protector of his town very seriously. The Sheriff takes his orders from the city of El Santo, but they largely leave him to run his bailiwick as he sees fit. He's usually helped out by 1d4 deputies of varying species, all generally good reliable men (or critters). Leadwall's as even handed as can be expected in the harsh world of the New West, and will only cause you grief if you try starting trouble in his town. It's a shame there aren't more fellas like him around these days.
^TOP^

Sheriff Jeff Coleman
Mutant Human

Hit Points: 45
Ranged Thac0:
12
Melee Thac0:
10
Mental Strength:
12
Constitution:
12
Mutations:
Physical: Bite Attack (1d6)
Mental: Telekinesis, Mental Shield

Armor:
Leather Jacket (AC8)
Weapons:
.45 Automatic (2d8)

You could say that Jeff Coleman's pretty much the prototypical New Western sheriff. Not so much 'cos he stands for law and order, but because he's a big mean loudmouthed bastard who rules his town with an iron fist. Coleman's no moron, tho. He knows when to play it rough and when to play it crafty. If intimidation don't work, he knows plenty of places around Lubok where the landsharks are bitin', or he can make sure you take a short walk up the steps to his gallows. If none of those measures work, he's got plenty of folks he can call on for help, on both sides of the "law". He's second cousins to the infamous M'Gee family, who get free rein whenever they blow into town, and who're glad to return the favor whenever Coleman asks. He's also in thick with the town's motly assembly of merchants and officials, in a cozy little system of bribes and kickbacks. Coleman tends to be near the middle of a lot of nasty conflicts between the townsfolk and neighboring ranch clans. Finally, he's generally got 1d6 big mindless goons around to back him up, whenever his cousins aren't in town. Lubok is ostensibly under the rule of the Overlord of Alkerk, but thats a long way off, and no word of Sheriff Coleman's dirty dealin's make it much farther than the landshark pits outside the city limits. ^TOP^

El Jefe Mysterioso
Mutant Human

Hit Points: 70
Ranged Thac0:
7
Melee Thac0:
9
Mental Strength:
18
Constitution:
15
Mutations:
Physical: Heightened Strength, Heightened Dexterity
Mental: Will Force, Repulsion Field, Stunning Force, Psychometry

Armor:
Riot Vest (AC 4)
Weapons:
Sawed Off Shotgun (3d6), Stun Gloves (2d6, 1d6)

El Jefe is the esteemed head of security of the fortified city of El Santo, a prominent member of the God King's masked priesthood. Like the rest of his order, the current El Mysterioso is a powerful mutant "wizard", blessed with incredible powers of the body and mind. He is also posessed of a keen intelligence, that not only enables him to survive in the dangerous political maneuvering in El Santo's court, but makes him a brilliant detective. While he is unswervingly loyal to his master, and committed to preserving the status quo in his leige's imperial city, he has often served the cause of justice thru his deductive skills and tenacity. El Jefe is in complete control of all branches of law enforcement in El Santo, from the border patrols and city guardsmen, to the God King's bodyguard , answerable only to El Santo himself and the High Federation of Priests. If that isn't enough, he can call upon the aid of the generals of the city's army, who are his fellow priests. Cross this man at your own risk, 'cos when you cross him, you cross one of the mightiest communities in the Texas Territories. ^TOP^

The Judgement Bugs
Mutant Beetles

Hit Points: 5d6 per swarm.
Ranged Thac0:
-
Melee Thac0:
10
Mental Strength:
9
Constitution:
17 (check for swarm)
Mutations:
Physical: Flight, Poison Sting (Paralysis Lvl 10), Radiation Immunity
Mental: Massmind, Telepathy, Heightened Brain Talent

Armor:
Natural AC 6
Weapons:
Dmg. 4d6 per round spent in swarm from stings and bites.

It's pretty much a truism that things are weird in Bugtown, at least as far as folks who've got a backbone and not a shell are concerned. Thing is, though, that as alien as a town ruled by sentient insects is, there are still some familiar features too. One of these is law enforcement, but even this takes on a bizarre twist in this territory. The job of judge, jury, and executioner is undertaken by a species of mutant beetle known to outsiders as Judgement Bugs. These critters, each inscribed with an uncanny star like pattern on their carapace, share a group intelligence that extends across the entire area the Bugs claim as their own. Actually, the thinkin' goes on in the carefully hidden main hive, while all the individual drones have is a reciever brain that allows them to coordinate their actions. The species as a whole is pretty even handed with the territory's insect denizens, but tend to be a little bigoted towards vertibrates, constantly spying on and harassing any that venture into their domain. If you catch 'em in a mellow mood, they may question you telepathically before sentencing, and no use lying to 'em, 'cos there's not much that goes on that one of 'em hasn't seen. Their collective mind sits in council with the other sentient insects of the area, and serves as the enforcement of the ruling body's interests. This enforcement they accomplish with ruthless efficiency, reducing lawbreakers and interlopers to bare bones, and dismantling rogue A.I. units from the inside faster than you can spit. As a word of advice, just watch your step and be real respectful to anything with six or more legs if you've got business in Bugtown. If you ever end up on their bad side, the best you can do is outrun 'em, hopefully after setting off enough ordinance to give yourself a good head start. ^TOP^

THE BILEEN LAWBOTS:
Sheriff ED-67 : Sheriff SC-39 : Sheriff TG-69

The town of Bileen is an important trading post and cattle stop for the mighty city of Fortwerp, so important that the ruler of that city, the mysterious Dallas Tower One, sent three of it's mighty robotic sons to protect and maintain order there. Thanks to their tireless, unwavering guardianship, Bileen is perhaps one of the most peaceful towns in the Texas Territories. Order is maintained, and often justice is served, in the most efficient and objective manner possible.

To make sure that they were well suited to the task of frontier lawmen, The Tower searched thru it's database of ancient moving pictures, and assembled a personality profile that would help it's remote units act the part required of them. While time and wear have made the personalities of the three current law units differ, they are all based on the same model, with the same idiosyncracies (like calling newcomers to Bileen "pilgrim" for example.) and the same deep, authoraitative voice pattern. They operate out of a specially constructed maintenance bay, which provides them with power recharges and a direct link to their ruler in Fortwerp. These units will only respond to direct orders from The Tower, but will generally be polite and helpful to Bileen citizens and vistiors alike, hearkening back to their ancient roles as airport public security 'bots. ^TOP^

Sheriff ED-67, "Duke"
Class 8 Security Robot

Hit Points: 45
Ranged Thac0:
8
Melee Thac0:
8
Mental Strength:
16
Constitution:
10
Systems:
Communicator. Autodoc
Armor:
AC 3
Weapons:
Stun Grenade Launcher, 2 .45 Automatics (2d6)

ED-67 is the primary unit, the leader you might say. While the threesome operate as equals, it's usually the unit known as "Duke" that does the talkin'. While well weathered from endless battles with lawless elements, it's a capable fighter and a hero of sorts to the locals. This unit's almost evolved a level of charm and compassion that you wouldn't expect in a robot, although it's efficient at all times. ED-67's one weakness is a bad servomotor in it's back, which will on occasion (20% per stress situation) misfire and totally incapacitate the robot for 2d4 hours. During these times it's capable of speaking, but cannot move or use it's weapons. An unfortunate bullet is lodged in it's neural linkages that brings this effect on, but is impossible to remove without setting off a chain reaction that would destroy it's A.I. core. This is a small hindrance, however, for such a devoted servant of the law . ^UP^

Sheriff SC-39, "The Kid"
Class 8 Security Robot

Hit Points: 55
Ranged Thac0:
8
Melee Thac0:
8
Mental Strength:
15
Constitution:
10
Systems:
Communicator. Autodoc
Armor:
AC 3
Weapons:
Stun Grenade Launcher, 2 Stun Guns in Hands, .45 Automatic (2d6)

The unit known as "The Kid" has only recently been dug out of a long lost storage bay, and sent to relieve the "older" robots now serving in Bileen. It has more of a tendency to rely on it's databanks and orders from it's master than from the judgement calls that it's brother units seem to have developed the ability to make. What it lacks in experience, tho, it makes up for in functionality, for while it is technically just as old as it's brother units in sheer time, it's got a lot less mileage. ^UP^

 

Sheriff TG-69, "Rooster"
Class 8 Security Robot

Hit Points: 35
Ranged Thac0:
8
Melee Thac0:
8
Mental Strength:
18
Constitution:
10
Systems:
Communicator. Autodoc
Armor:
AC 4
Weapons:
Sawed Off Shotgun (3d6), .45 Automatic (2d8)

If it's at all possible to describe a robot as "crochety", then TG-69 would be it. This unit's seen the rough end of a lot of encounters. Most of it's original combat systems are damaged and useless, but this unit's tenacity makes it a valuable asset in a fight. It was originally the sole defender of Bileen, but as time wore on The Tower realized that it would need some help. This unit had developed something of a unique personality early, and at first didn't take too kindly to the succession of new robots, prompting it's nickname of "The Rooster". Eventually, tho, it settled into it's role as part of a team, and continues to serve well as a law officer, in spite of the wear and tear. It also seems to be the unit with the most genuine heart, if such a thing can be found in an A.I. Core. Rooster's got a gentle spot inside that duralloy and steel exterior, especially for the weak and downtrodden. Wonders never cease in the New West.^UP^

NEXT TIME: THE LAREDO M'GEES

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