Monster Ecology: Snake Eyes
Tip of the hat to the Hack & Slash blog, covering Dungeons & Dragons and gaming. In particular, I’ve been looking back through their monster ecology series, with great delight for their crowdsourced “rumors and other whispers in the dark”.
Just consider the Ecology of the Lammasu and Lamia:
- All lions are inherently evil. They lust after human flesh, and when they consume enough, they become a monster. Manticores come from the flesh of old men, young women produce lamias. Kings produce Sphinxes.
Or from the Psuedodragon:
- The fey creators created the pseudodragon as a small-scale practice sculpt before beginning work on the mighty dragon. The creature pleased the gods, and they build the dragons as commanded. Too proud to hide their process, they released the model to live on its own, with the power to mirror copy itself only granted the most ancient of creatures, lost to nearly every species
Within that model, I had it in mind to scribble out a few rumors of my own. Not from the D&D Monster Manual (recently released to core hobby stores), but from my unending love for G.I. Joe—this time, starting with the man in black, the ultimate tabula rasa, Snake Eyes.
- Dressed in black and codenamed Snake Eyes? Clearly he’s a former Cobra agent who transitioned to the Joe side. Of course, he may or may not still be a sleeper agent (whether he knows it or not; he’s spent considerable time in the Brainwave Scanner).
- Actually an advanced combat robot, developed by M.A.R.S. Industries (which explains his lack of speech/emotions). The prototype for all B.A.T.s and carries unique programming that Cobra is desperate to get back; with it, their B.A.T.s will evolve into equally lethal machines.
- As with fan theories surrounding 007, there has always been a “Snake Eyes” on the Joe team—a generic codename for the top soldier who must don the mask and forego his former identity. Several previously “retired” or KIA Joes have secretly taken on this mantle, including Grunt and Quick Kick.
- Not human at all. A visiting alien, or demon summoned through occult ceremony (By Cobra or an ultra-secret wing of the military).
- Secretly Duke or Hawk, bored with life as a high-ranking officer, and still skilled enough to stay in the field. Doesn’t speak so as to protect his identity.
- Storm Shadow’s alter-self/shadow summoned in mystic ninjitsu ceremony; their final test is not complete until one of them is killed by the other.
- A future or past warrior, summoned through time by a Cobra device. Possibly a future Billy or a past Hard Master; keeps his identity secret so as not to upset the time continuum.
- Timber is not his animal companion, but actually Snake Eyes in wolf form. Yes, Snake Eyes is secretly a lycanthrope, contracted while training in the Himalayas. He is slowly losing his humanity altogether, and has already lost his speech.
- His black suit is really empty. Animated by the soul of his weapon (an ancient katana) to be little more than its ultimate wielder in battle.
- Never mind Serpentor, Snake Eyes was actually a secret genetic project combining the DNA of past martial arts legends (including Bruce Lee) as well as animal genes (wolf, tiger, shark), designed to produce the ultimate living weapon. He has no overt identity of his own, and requires extensive meditation/sensory deprivation tank sessions to avoid slipping into complete insanity and killing everyone around him.