Savage Deathlands Part 4: Muties and Adversaries

This section took me a bit longer to put together. I’ve included the most common mutant human species (stickies, scalies and swampies) as well as some of the stereotypical human NPCs the players are likely to encounter.

Note: Updated based on early feedback. The stickies are even meaner!


Mutations & Mutants

I have included stats for all the common Deathlands mutants; you can use the many creatures in the SWD core book or the companion books for other mutants, simply by reskinning existing menaces.

Common Human Mutants

Following are “common” mutant strains found within the Deathlands.

Stickies: They are humanoid in size and form, but are always bald, of low intelligence, and incapable of any speech beyond gabbling, hissing, and hooting. They generally have small, slit-like noses, black eyes, and razor-sharp teeth; their bodies are elastic and heal very quickly. Stickies gained their names from the hundreds of tiny suckers on their hands and feet; once attached to a surface, only main strength or the stickie’s will can release them – even death often won’t relax a stickie’s grip. A favorite tactic is to latch onto a victim’s face and tear it off the skull.

  • Agility D8, Smarts D4, Spirit D4, Strength D10, Vigor D10
  • Climb D10+2, Notice D8, Fighting D10, Throwing D6, Stealth D6
  • Charisma -2, Pace 6, Parry 7, Toughness 13(2)
  • Advantages: Alertness, Dodge, Fearless, Hardy
  • Hindrances: Obsession (Minor, Fire), Ugly, Bloodthirsty
  • Weakness Headshot: Double Damage on called shot
  • Suckers: Can initiate a grapple as a free action with all unarmed attacks. When successfully grappling, a sticky automatically does 1D6+Str damage to the target. This is a free action and does not count towards a multi-action penalty.  +2 to all grapple and climb checks. Can climb at full movement.
  • Bite: 2D4+Str.
  • Rubber Skin: +4 Toughness, +2 Armor.

Scalies: Scalies are lizard-like humanoids with greenish, scaled skin, yellow eyes, and sharp teeth. Most are tall and leanly muscular, though some are obese to the extreme.Like most humanoid muties, they eat flesh, preferring it fresh. They can be found in many places in Deathlands, though always near water.

  • Agility D6, Smarts D4, Spirit D6, Strength D8, Vigor D6
  • Climb D6, Notice D4, Fighting D8, Shooting D6, Stealth D6, Throwing D6
  • Charisma 0, Pace 6, Parry 6, Toughness 11(4)
  • Advantages: Ambidextrous, Two-Fisted Combat
  • Hindrances: Bloodthirsty, Mean
  • Scaly Hide: +2 Toughness, +4 Armor
  • 2 claw D6+Str, bite D6+Str.

Swampies: Swampies stand around 5 feet tall, but their bodies are much more muscular and dense than normal – an adult swampie usually exceeds 200 pounds. Their skin ranges the gamut from white to red to brown, and their hair is short and curly; they have extremely dense bones, two circulatory systems, webbed hands, and yellow eyes. The redundant organs, along with their natural toughness, make them extremely hard to kill – about the only way to stop one is to shoot it in the head or decapitate it.

Swampies have low intelligence (they can make and use tools), and some are capable of coherent speech, though they often communicate through grunts and howls. They hunt in packs, killing anything that’s not a swampie; they have a special taste for babies, often raiding settlements to steal and eat them.

  • Agility D4, Smarts D4, Spirit D6, Strength D10, Vigor D10
  • Notice D6, Fighting D10, Throwing D6, Intimidation D6
  • Charisma 0, Pace 6, Parry 6, Toughness 11(2)
  • Advantages: Brawler, Brawny, Hardy, Low Light Vision
  • Hindrances: Bloodthirsty
  • Thick Skin: +2 Toughness, +2 Armor.


Other Mutations

There are also subtle mutations that are often times tolerated or even considered beneficial. Specifically are the seers & doomies. See Hindrances and Edges in part 1. Seers have a kind of sixth sense and are keen to picking up on dangerous situations.

There can be other mutations found, I recommend using the Super Powers Companion, going with the “Pulp Heroes” power level. Since they are mutations, I would have some sort of hindrance for every 5 point spent on powers. Creatures from the Horror Companion and Fantasy Companion can also easily be used as rad-blasted, post-nuke-caust monstrosity.

Non-Mutant Adversaries

The following are a few basic human adversaries the players would commonly run into. To make a main adversary, you can simply give the listed adversary a few more skill ranks and make them wildcards. In addition to what is in their descriptions, about half all the sec-men, and sec sec-bosses, have an assault rifle or submachine gun. About half of the merchants and mechanics also have a shotgun or rifle.

Sec-Men: These are the grunt enforcers for any ville or barony. Most are not too bright and all are not afraid to use extreme violence.

  • Agility D8, Smarts D6, Spirit D6, Strength D8, Vigor D8
  • Notice D6, Fighting D8, Intimidation D6, Throwing D6, Shooting D6, Stealth D4, Driving D6
  • Charisma 0, Pace 6, Parry 6, Toughness 6
  • Advantages: Brawler or Alertness
  • Hindrances: Mean
  • Weapons: Survival Knife (Str+D4), Peacemaker handgun (2D6+1)


Sec-Boss: The security leader of the ville or barony, these are tough, smart individuals.who are true cold hearts. Sometimes, the Sec-Boss is the true power behind the baron.

  • Agility D6, Smarts D8, Spirit D6, Strength D8, Vigor D8
  • Notice D6, Fighting D8, Intimidation D8, Throwing D6, Shooting D8, Stealth D6, Streetwise D6, Driving D6, Survival D4
  • Charisma 0, Pace 6, Parry 6, Toughness 6
  • Advantages: Brawler, Combat Reflexes,
  • Hindrances: Mean, Vengeful
  • Weapons:  Survival Knife (Str+D4), S&W .44 (2D6+1)


Baron: The rulers of a ville or barony. These are very frequently despots and cruel, greedy men. They are often very smart and cunning rulers. Sometimes they may actually be benevolent, though this is very rare.

  • Agility D6, Smarts D8, Spirit D6, Strength D6, Vigor D6
  • Climb D6, Notice D8, Fighting D8, Intimidation D8, Throwing D6, Shooting D8,Stealth D4
  • Charisma +2, Pace 6, Parry 6, Toughness 5
  • Advantages: Command, Fervor, Rich, Noble
  • Hindrances: Arrogant, Quirk, Vengeful, Greedy (minor or major)
  • Weapons: Survival Knife (Str+D4), S&W .44 (2D6+1)

Merchant: This represents the shop owner, barkeep, huckster and caravan leader. Most know a little about a lot of different things, but are truly good at getting the best deal for their wares. The caravan leaders do tend to be a bit better skilled at fighting that the others and get a D8 in that skill.

  • Agility D6, Smarts D8, Spirit D6, Strength D4, Vigor D6
  • Notice D6, Fighting D6, Throwing D4, Shooting D6, Persuasion D6, Knowledge: Trading D6
  • Charisma 0, Pace 6, Parry 5, Toughness 5
  • Advantages: Charismatic
  • Hindrances: Greedy(minor)
  • Weapons: Survival Knife (Str+D4), Ruger (2D6)


Mechanic: These are the car mechanics, machinists, weaponsmiths, etc of the post-dark era. They are knowledgeable in their area but not much else. Mechanics tend to make a decent living in most places with their sought after skill sets.

  • Agility D6, Smarts D8, Spirit D6, Strength D8, Vigor D6,
  • Fighting D6, Shooting D4, Repair D8, Driving D6, Knowledge Mechanics D6
  • Charisma 0, Pace 6, Parry 5, Toughness 5
  • Advantages: Jack of All Trades
  • Hindrances: Quirk (talks shop, poor social skills, etc.)
  • Weapons: Survival Knife (Str+D4), Colt 1911 (2D6+1)


Civilian: These are the run of the mill people in the deathlands that do not fall into one of the above groups. This represents the vast majority of the population in the Deathlands.

  • Agility D6, Smarts D6, Spirit D4, Strength D6, Vigor D6
  • Notice D4, Fighting D4, Throwing D4, Shooting D4
  • Charisma 0, Pace 6, Parry 4, Toughness 5
  • Advantages:
  • Hindrances: Poverty, 50% have Yellow
  • Weapons: Survival Knife (Str+D4), 50% have a basic pistol (2D6)


Bandits: These are the raiders, scavengers, and slavers that can be found in the wasted lands of the Deathlands.

  • Agility D6, Smarts D4, Spirit D4, Strength D8, Vigor D8
  • Notice D4, Fighting D8, Throwing D4, Shooting D8, Gambling D6, Survival D6, Stealth D4
  • Charisma 0, Pace 6, Parry 6, Toughness 6
  • Advantages: Buiser, Liquid Courage
  • Hindrances: Greedy (minor), Mean, Overconfident
  • Weapons: Survival Knife (Str+D4), S&W .44 (2D6+1), AK47 (2D8+1)


Well, this is it for what I originally was looking to release. But thanks to some really nice and inspiring feedback, I’ll be posting at least one more that will have some archetypes to use in this setting. I’ve also been thinking about converting specific creatures from the Deathlands series. One is a four limbed, dog headed gorilla creature, another is a freakish centipede/mantis hybrid that can burrow through concrete and loose soil, but not natural rock. Then there are the various sec-droids the companions encounter in their travels. And I may want to do a write up of Trader’s War Wag One…. You get the idea.

Tell me what you think of what I’ve posted so far!!

Also, make sure to check the earlier posts as I have made some updates to them based on feedback and my own observation after I posted.

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