Venoms With Bite

by Dmitri Scull

Art by Christopher Shy

The standard Venom Advantage for GURPS works beautifully, up to a point. While it admirably covers many toxins and corrosive attacks, it does have some weaknesses, and does not manage to describe many real-world venoms very well; especially toxins normally found only in invertebrates, plants, or fungi. In addition, many creatures have, instead of an actual venom, a virulent symbiotic disease; for which the Venom Advantage is inappropriate.

The following Advantages are racial Advantages specifically for such races; also included is the Strong Jaws Advantage, as the Disease Carrier Advantage is especially appropriate for scavenger races, who while not specifically needing Sharp Teeth, should have a better bite attack than normal.

Note that much of the new material is an addition to the Venom Advantage; for clarity's sake, the original Venom rules are included as part of the revision. Note that there are a couple of new Enhancements as well, especially ones that can be used to create combined venoms (such as a poisonous toxin that acts as an anaesthetic as well).

Anti-Coagulant Venom

30 points

The venom the character possesses is a particularly nasty one; any wounds from the envenomed attacks are treated as if the victim had the Hemophilia Disadvantage. Once the wound has been bandaged, it will heal normally, but until it is bandaged, it will continue to bleed.

Disease Carrier

5/10 points

The character is a carrier for some virulent disease. The character will not infect himself, but can contract other diseases (unless he or she has the Immune to Disease Advantage). If the character is assumed to be suffering from the disease, he should take an appropriate Disadvantage. For 5 points, the disease will only be transmitted by some form of close contact, usually from a natural attack such as a bite or claw attack. A victim of the attack must make a HT roll (for each wound) or suffer the effects of a serious, but not lethal illness (GM's choice). For 10 points, transmission is airborne; anyone around the character must make a HT roll once per day or contract the disease; the character's natural attacks still carry the infection. Individuals with Immune to Disease are (naturally) immune.

Strong Jaws

3 points

The character gains an effective bite attack. Damage is still crushing, but is now calculated using the character's full ST score.


15 points/level

You secrete a venom that can be delivered by various means. Types of venom include: Venoms With Bite

Venom Enhancements and Limitations

Article publication date: December 29, 2000

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