Giant Centipedes are endemic to the Badlands, growing up to 60′ in length, though most specimens encountered in the wilds are less than half this size. Highly venomous, these voracious nocturnal predators usually are found scrambling and digging through and around the base of the hills and mountains in the Badlands, always in search of their next meal.
Usually becoming active an hour or two before dusk, they are the reason Badland nomads will camp down early, both in the hope to identify if one is nearby but primarily because they dislike fire and will actively avoid it.
Though they have extremely poor eyesight, they are able to sense the most subtle vibration. During the daytime, they typically dig a hole and will burst through the surface in a shower of dirt and stones to scuttle towards anything that moves in their vicinity. Unlike normal sized centipedes, they have humanoid faces – the males armed with huge pincers/mandibles and a large snaggletoothed maw, the females – poison dripping from clusters of tendril like stingers in their mouths that if touched by bare skin causes unbearable pain and paralysis as they eat and crunch up their victim alive with powerful barbed mandibles.
While only semi-intelligent, periodically there have existed mutant tribesmen in the Badlands known as ‘the scuttlers’ – who have historically been able to psionically bond with juvenile Giant Centipedes and bind them to their will, training them to act as mounts. These xenophobic bandit tribesmen – who always have insectiod mutations (typically feet with suction cups they use to adhere to their mounts) are active during the day and night – typically attacking with a rain of spears and only closing to attack in melee once their targets are sufficiently weakened and have a visceral and mutual hatred of the Sakkala, who will hunt down and exterminate a tribe if it becomes known to them for reasons known only to the Sakkala.
With speed and reaction time one of their greatest assets – Giant Centipedes are terrifyingly fast – and can turn extremely quickly, as well as climb uneven and almost sheer vertical surfaces with their hooked and sticky feet. Additionally, their exoskeletons are both flexible and tough and will turn aside most non magical weapons with ease – though when shedding skins are extremely vulnerable to attack and often hunted out by their only natural predator, the Giant Black Hunting Beetle.