|Artist's rendition of a War Wolf|
Disables targeted vehicle
|Heroic Upgrade||Kill Hack (Secondary depilots vehicles)|
|Country of Origin||Italy|
|Trained at||Synthgenics Inc, Venice|
|Key Features|| » Muscle mass and intelligence modifications|
» "Canis IV" cyber-brain
» Grafted armour plating
» Optical sensory enhancements
» SimStem conditioning link
- - Motto of the Legion Lupin Division
Tactical Analysis Edit
- Canis Lupus Cyberneticus: Aside from making very good scouts, these cybernetically enhanced wolves have some other features to recommend them, such as a pair of powerful hydraulic jaws, which excel in chomping infantry in half.
- Not so Lone Wolf: Far from being solitary, War Wolves are still pack animals, working best in groups. In fact, in groups of 3 or more, War Wolves become completely unable to be stunned.
BugDog in the Code: Even vehicles must beware packs of War Wolves. Using their computerised brains, War Wolves can scramble a system's electronics, shutting it down. Beware, however, as this takes a while to work, and War Wolves must stay still while doing so, and even a creature as heavily modified as a War Wolf cannot survive a tank rolling over them.
- You Call that a Bark?: The most experienced War Wolves are gifted with upgrades that allow them to support more complex hacking software; instead of simply shutting down the vehicle, the improved virus is able to turn the targeted vehicle on its own crew, killing them and leaving the vehicle open for the taking.
"It is a telling sign that they did not consider a normal wolf to be fierce enough."
- - National Geographic, May 1968 "Urban Jungle - The Sprawls"
Wolves have long had a place in the culture of the Syndicate. It is rumored that Romulus owned a pet wolf he called Remus, a faithful companion and fierce protector that was always at his side. Darker rumors swirled that the wolf was name was more deeply symbolic than most realized, that Romulus had seen to the death of a close friend or even brother at some point and named the creature as a reminder of the act. As is often the case with the Syndicate, nothing was ever proven.
In emulation of their founder, the Syndicate has taken the wolf as a symbol of war. Many legions have adapted a symbolic representation of the creature as their unit badges, and statues or relief sculpture of the creatures adorn many corporate headquarters and military bases. It's therefore not terribly surprising that, as the Syndicate moved into cybernetics, they would find use for the creature. Really, the biggest surprise is that it took as long as it did.
Bred in captivity and modified extensively, War Wolves are quite possibly one of the most terrifying things on four legs. Bred to be bigger and meaner than any wild wolf could evolve to be, these creatures would be frightening enough as they were, but the Syndicate were not satisfied just yet. Like a great many citizens of the Sprawls, the War Wolf has undergone a process known as cyberization, the implantation of computers into the nervous system. A cyber-brain, a wetware/hardware interface, has been installed around the brain, while the eyes have been replaced with digital camera lenses. In the body, the spine itself has been swapped out for an electronic equivalent that replaces biological synapses with fibre-optic cables, enhancing their reflexes, and thin armour plates have been grafted onto the skin for protection against hostile fire, while the pelt is removed to be sold for profit. The process leaves the animal as much machine as wolf, a horrifying and crude amalgam of fur, flesh and steel that most consider profoundly disturbing. Metal plates are exposed at the joints where the skin has worn away, while the cortex and spine implants protrude out of scar tissue, and the eyes glow a sickly yellow. When this once noble creature howls, its dirge is accompanied by the disruptive screech of a dying modem that causes lights to flicker and electronics to fail. What was once a noble beast has now become a living nightmare.
Yet, the process to create a War Wolf is but half-done. Thanks to enhancements to the intellect, War Wolves benefit from a training regime that will hone their inborn skills. Through their cyber-brains is fed a simstim (simulated stimulation) feed, which is monitored by specially programmed artificial intelligences. These AIs monitor the behavior of each wolf, relaying them orders by marking targets with falsified scents, creating artificial sounds to lure them forward and, of course, punishing them for failure to comply with simulated pain. It speaks of the effectiveness of the system that these wolves are said never to make the same mistake twice.
On the field, War Wolves usually operate in packs, hunting down hiding enemies and tearing them to pieces with their hydraulic jaws, or disabling squadrons of enemy vehicles and leaving them easy prey for their human masters. Though it is not uncommon for individual wolves to be attached to infantry squads, marking targets on the Battle Matrix for their comrades, wolves operate best in packs, where they can form a small neural network, merging background processes and freeing up processing power to focus on the battle. More than that, though, in these packs the War Wolves simply seem more active; it is speculated that it comforts the creatures to know they do not suffer alone.