Like the rest of his Manimal 'friends', Vortex has an incredibly tricky origin. He's from a world within the Lunartix Empire, a loose association of alien worlds in another dimension, which may or may not be a parallel earth. As such, Vortex can be designated as an alien being (though who knows what species he belongs to), as well as an extraplanar guy. Furthermore, he's a high tech villain, to boot.
Additional Limbs / Arms: Vortex hails from an alien species that was blessed with not one, but two pairs of arms with which to manipulate the world. Vortex's additional set of arms raises his inherent Melee trait by 1 RS (which is reflected above), and grants him an additional melee attack with his arms in each combat turn (if caught outside his biomechanical armor suit, that is).
Claws: despite his diminutive size, Vortex is nonetheless armed with fierce physical weaponry. Each of his four hands (and possibly both feet) have fingers that end in razor-sharp claws. When used in battle, each of these claw sets (consisting of three finger claws and one thumb claw) can be used by Vortex to inflict his Brawn value (4) in Slashing damage with each painful strike.
Fangs: while his claws may be somewhat small, Vortex's fangs most definitely are not. These giant edged implements, filling a maw that is in fact half the size of his diminutive head, can be used in combat to inflict rank value 6 Slashing damage with every painful bite. While this is more harm than he can cause with his claws, it forces him to taste his foes.
Shrinking: Vortex is short fellow - real short. While he looks pretty darn impressive in his biomechanical armor suit, Vortex is actually only about three feet tall, and thus has this power by default at rank value 2. This is not an active power, mind you, so much as one that simply describes the diminutive nature of this vicious little alien bounty hunter.
Limitations / Enhancements:
Biomechanical Armor: his trademark equipment, this mechanically enhanced biological construct is the vehicle by which Vortex goes about his bounty hunting work. Standing at about seven and a half foot tall, this hulking green and gold suit makes Vortex look much larger in stature, not to mention more imposing. Furthermore, this suit is equipped with the following capabilities:
* Ability Boost: since this curious exo-skeleton is much larger than Vortex himself, it goes without saying that it enhances his meager (compared to his fellow Manimals) traits. While he's safely secured in the suit, Vortex may go about his business (including the apprehension of various criminal sorts) with the following enhancements to his traits:
* Blindsiding Attack: Vortex's armor has the ability to split open down the center, allowing him to make personal attacks against anybody that gets close enough for him to do so (if he's grappling them, for example). If he's holding a body, or they are unaware that someone SMALL is inside the suit, he can make automatic assaults against them at his leisure. Creepy, eh?
* Body Armor: being a suit of armor by design, this biomechanical construct offers Vortex an impressive amount of defense against physical injury - and in his line of work, the more protection you have, the better. Functioning at rank value 50, this basic ability protects Vortex from all minor (and several major) forms of attack, and breaks down in the following fashion:
RV 50 / RV 30 / RV 10 / RV 4 / RV 0
* Claws: since he's used to fighting with claws anyway, it only makes sense that Vortex's armor suit is equipped with these weapons as well. In essence, they allow him to inflict his armor's Brawn value (30) in Slashing damage per deadly strike, as opposed to the mere Bashing damage he'd cause by pummeling a convict or two into unconsciousness.
* Environmental Independence: allowing him to survive the rigors of bounty hunting in space, it is assumed that this suit affords Vortex the ability to last in space for some time before he must restock his supply of air and/or food and water. Possessing this power at rank value 200, the suit allows Vortex to survive without air, food, or water for just over a week (up to nine days, in fact).
* Screened Senses: in addition to protecting from direct physical damage, Vortex's armor also shields his sensory organs against overload attacks, to some extent. Functioning at rank value 40, the golden visor on the outside of the suit's helmet, along with the helmet's other protective headgear, filters out sensory assaults of like (or lesser) rank as a general matter of course.
Guns: Vortex carries two advanced energy weapons on him at all times - claws don't always cut it, you know. One of his weapons is a small energy caster capable of an unknown type which can inflict rank value 20 Energy damage per blast, while the other is a pump-action energy rifle, also of an undetermined type, which can be fired to inflict rank value 30 Energy damage per shot.
Unattractive 2: while Vortex may be quite handsome in the eyes of those who live where he hails from, it's simply an unfortunate reality that he's considered quite ugly just about everywhere else - what with those bug eyes, giant teeth, and all. This causes folks to treat to Vortex as though his Repute trait was -4 RS for the purposes of NPC reactions.
Advanced Guns: Vortex knows how to use various advanced ranged weapons quite well, since they help him to bring in his targets much easier than just bludgeoning them to death. Whether he's got a laser pistol, a blaster, a rail gun, or some other esoteric energy weapon in hand, Vortex may use said weapon as though his Coordination trait was +1 RS in value - not bad, eh?
Detective / Espionage: while he's too blunt and coarse to be a spy, Vortex definitely knows how to apply the various skills needed to track down his quarry, no matter how well he or she may hide their trail. Whenever attempting to piece together clues regarding the whereabouts of somebody he's been hired to collect, Vortex should receive a +1 RS on any applicable ACTION rolls.
Natural Weapons: Vortex is quite good at utilizing his claws and, to a lesser extent, his fangs. Whenever he attempts to do so in battle, whether he's in his biomechanical armor suit or not, Vortex may do so as though his Melee value was +1 RS higher than that which is listed above. He may rather use guns in a fight, but he can definitely go to claw city if he's got to.
It is assumed that Vortex is on relatively good terms with his fellow Manimals, since he crossed interdimensional space with them to crash the party in our own universe, as it were. Furthermore, it is likely that he's also on good terms with the Lunartix Empire, who sent him here in the first place. Finally, various beings on his homeworld (wherever that may be) may be reliable contacts as well.
Vortex's costume, the 'clothing' he wears at all times, is actually the biomechanical armor that he uses in the pursuit of folks with bounties on their heads. It's a primarily fleshy green armor, though it is complemented by large blue boots, blue shoulder and arm pads, a blue chest plate, gray thigh pieces, and a large gray helmet complete with a gold visor.
Vortex is motivated by greed and greed alone. Sure, he hunts down space criminals of all types, but doesn't do so out of a sense of justice so much as for the reward that this work entails; he only nets a criminal if there's a bounty on his head. To this end, he travels across the cosmos to gain the rush that comes with beating the snot out of some dangerous thug - and getting a paycheck for it.
Real Name: unknown
Occupation: bounty hunter
Legal Status: Citizen of the Lunartix Empire (galactic organization in a parallel earth)
Marital Status: single
Alias(es), if any: none
Group Affiliation: the Manimals
Weight: 60 lbs
Other Distinguishing Characteristics: Vortex is a creepy little fellow. He's got disproportionately short limbs (all six of them), brilliant gold skin tone (possibly covered in scales), and a decidedly inhuman face that consists of large bug-eyes, a tiny pug nose, and a huge maw that is filled with massive sharp, pointy teeth that appears to be in a perpetual sneer (or manic grin).
Vortex is unique amongst his Manimal fellows in that he's not incredibly powerful in and of himself, so much as he's considerably enhanced his physical prowess with highly advanced biotechnological implements. While he is dangerous enough all by his lonesome, he's a mobile disaster area once he dons his biomechanical armor suit and goes on the hunt for wanted criminals.
You see, Vortex is a bounty hunter like his fellow Manimal, Slythor, but isn't quite as picky about who he bags. While Slythor seeks out the cosmos' most dangerous criminal-types for the challenge of it, Vortex is just out for the money, plain and simple. This causes him to get paid less per job, of course, but since he takes so many more jobs than his fellow hunter, he makes more money overall.
In fact, he does so much business that, 'west of the G-2 galaxy', where he reportedly comes from, he's got such a rep as a successful hunter that the vast majority of cosmic criminals steer clear of the area - and those who become criminals there get out fast. This likely applies to this area in both Vortex's own timeline and our own, since it'd be familiar hunting grounds in both universes.
Vortex is a persistent and tenacious foe for any would-be criminals, for he 'always gets his man', so to speak. This tends to get him into some trouble on the job, of course, as he's not always interested in upholding the law - especially if it gets in the way of his getting paid. As you can guess, this has caused him to be marked as a dangerous being by those who keep track of such things.
Folks such as the GI Joe Star Brigade, for instance, who have to deal with Vortex whenever he comes to earth and causes more trouble than the person he's hunting for already has. This has caused the Joes several headaches over the years, though Vortex isn't about to let some pesky humans get in the way of a paycheck. So, if you see Vortex in your area, seek cover immediately!
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