Sunday
Mar072010

Round One, Fight Three - Tunguska Versus Old Bitey

Do you hear that sound, ladies and gentlemen? That's the screeching of a beast from another world. And it's a communist. Sultans and snakemen, popes and presidents, gaze in awe at our very own red menace:

TUNGUSKA

The Kremlin of 1980 sent a tank battallion and several transport helicopters loaded with classified equipment to the Siberia of 1910, hours after the alleged asteroid impact that flattened 800 square miles of Taiga. What they retrieved was a crippled monster from another star, burnt and dying after its failed landing. Insectile in appearance and rebuilt with Kazakh steel, Tunguska enjoys emitting unearthly shrieks and firing off its machine guns almost as much as it enjoys the Soviet National Anthem, which it likes so much that the Russian team never dare turn it off. Let us hope they never do.

Size: The Tunguska larva itself is around 18ft long, although its armoured exoskeleton is nearing 22ft.
Speed: Tunguska has a good range of movement, but is... deliberate in its motions. Prone to stomping, screaming, and trudging menacingly rather than sprinting.
Offense: A versatile battery of rockets, backed up by two savage machineguns, makes Tunguska a formidable opponent at range. Targeting on the guns is a little shoddy though, since the larva aims with sonar, and is thus constantly disrupted by the blasting of the soviet national anthem. Still, that shell holds a hell of a lot of ammo. Up close, Tunguska has an assortment of shirling, slicing mouthparts, with incredibly tenacious grasping tentacles.
Defense: Soviet steel, and an iron belief in the Cause. But under the armour, the larva itself is a flimsy thing.
Temperament: Everything that's scary about Stalin, but in a hulking alien insect with a robot battle suit.

Facing up against the Soviet Superbug, a battered old bruiser from a blighted red land, far away under a roasting sun...

OLD BITEY


The Australian competitor hails from a dismal future in which the red continent has suffered a devastating nuclear war with New Zealand. We contacted the largest feudal power and let them browse through our catalogue. One trip to the Devonian and three weeks of engineering later, their crude foundries put out Old Bitey: the front end of an armoured Dunkleosteus fish, bolted onto a dirty burning fusion engine and hovering on near-fried antigrav plates. In addition to a bite strength of 80,000 lbs per square inch, the radioactive monster has batteries of stinging tentacles, with many grasping broken bottles.

Size: 30ft long, including tentacles
Speed: This thing is goddamn fast as Hermes, and eight times as nasty. Its engines are unreliable, but give it the luxury of flight up to 8 metres from the ground.
Offense: Those jaws are simply terrifying. They will fucking wreck anything they want to. The tentacles are nasty work too, with stinging batteries that could easily fell a man, and broken bottles besides.
Defense: Metal plate on the back, and fist-thick bone at the front - although some engine parts may be vulnerable.
Temperament: Predatory, famished and cantankerous.

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Old Bitey comes under heavy fire as soon from the moment he cruises into the main arena dome; immediately he is battered and buffeted by airbursts as Tunguska saturates the air with rocket artillery, hoping to knock out the fish's ropey antigrav plates in the process.

Bitey stays distant enough to avoid a direct hit, and makes high passes until the Soviet larva is forced to reload batteries. As the smoke clears, the sleek and massive form of the Dunkleosteus lines up for a diving pass on the Arena's central pedestal, from which Tunguska is making its stand....


With a sound like a freight train thundering through the air, the armoured Dunkleosteus begins its apocalyptic divebomb, shearing jaws stretched wide.

Tunguska unleashes volleys of searing tracer fire, but the Australian leviathan on its humming grav plates swerves and rolls to avoid the worst of the onslaught.

Screaming alien defiance as its anthem blasts out in the echoing arena, the alien lets rip and stands its ground until the colossus is a moment away from impact.

Then, with synapses designed to transmit neural instructions to a worker brood of millions, the alien arthropod lunges sideways to avoid the strike. Despite the Soviet's bravado though, it is not quick enough.



With a sickening crunch and screech of sheering metal, the National Anthem of the USSR is cut out, leaving only the sound of crackling static and falling debris. Old Bitey tears away into the height of the arena dome, with Tunguska's speaker array hanging from its jaws...

The silence lasts only a moment. Suddenly the booming, inverted ululation of the alien larva's hatecry blasts out across the stadium, shaking the hats on the heads of gentlemen and ladies alike.

Old Bitey shouldn't have turned off the music...


The fans can't believe what they're seeing. As Old Bitey wheels round for another attack run on the stricken star beast, Tunguska bellows a challenge and lurches into motion.

Amping up its myostatic fibres to unsustainable levels and flooding its leaking blood with war pheromones, the alien begins gathering momentum for a wild sprint - straight towards the edge of the pedestal, 300 feet of empty air, and a fusion-powered predator holding a lot of broken bottles.

The fish screams forward on a pillar of boiling heat haze, and Tunguska gives a mighty push on the pedestal edge with his pistonlike back leg.

Ten thousand gentlemen hold their breath and their wallets as the two bleeding behemoths seem to hang in the air for a moment, illuminated by starlight, far over the broken rubble of the arena floor.

Somewhere, on an external comms spire, facing straight into the sun, a Spartan is playing an electric guitar...

Time starts again. With a sickening thud, Tunguska's dorsal spine plows into the skull of the Fish, splintering bone and slicing nerves.

The brutal hunter's eyes roll back in their sockets for a moment, but with a thunder of black-burning fusion they snap back forward with a hellish glow. The Soviet Alien swings from the skull of Old Bitey, and the two monsters become entwined in a mass of lashing, tearing tentacles.

The pair are losing altitude fast, lurching downwards towards the western stand of the crowd. Old Bitey takes massive, mortal bites from Tunguska's shell, desperate to shake free the weight of his assailant. But the dying beast clings on, gnawing with its beak and screaming in agony.

With a clatter, Tunguska fires off the last of its ammo into the fish's bony jaw, hoping to finish off the brain before it expires. Blood pours from the flying brawl as it dips lower and lower towards the terrified audience....

Just inches from plowing into the commentary tower, Old Bitey makes one final surge for position and gets Tunguska's fleshy head within its reach. Tonnes of pressure slams shut the shearing bone plates of the titan's jaw, and the enemy's head flops off like a sack of egg yolk. The dead weight of the Russian contender plummets into the crowd, killing dozens, while Old Bitey makes an unsteady flight towards the surgery bays...


OLD BITEY WINS!!!!