Monday, September 5, 2011

Berk Species Profile: Russian Werewolves

Russian Airborne patch from Russian
The nations of the world all fell around the time of the First Event, so the city of Berk does not fall under the jurisdiction of any country. Don't tell that to the Russian Werewolves, though; they're nice guys, so let them hold onto their delusion.

According to the Russian Werewolves, Russia sent a battalion of werewolf paratroopers to invade America around the time of the First Event. These paratroopers landed near Berk and proceeded to capture the city in the name of Mother Russia. The rest of the invasion and the capture of America had to be called off, though, because there was no America left to capture.

This story is somewhat suspicious, though. For one thing, the Werewolves do not seem sure about which Russia they serve. They are fond of referring to people as "comrade" and they refer to their homeland as the Russian Federation, the USSR, and even Imperial Russia. For another thing, their uniforms, while usually old and worn, do not match Russian paratrooper uniforms. While they should be wearing camouflage and blue berets, Russian Werewolves typically wear peaked caps, trousers with piping down the side, tall cavalry boots, and jackets with bright buttons and tassled epaulets.

Today, the Russian Werewolves are few in number, but they still stick to their duty to keep their territory safe from gangs, mutants, and raiders. Their barracks are in the old subway stations, with the main barracks being in the Downtown station near the Great Library. They do their duty with enthusiasm, always cheerful in the face of danger.

The people of Berk don't mind the Werewolves claiming Berkeley for Russia. Russia no longer exists, so there is little practical application of the supposed conquest. The Werewolves are an affable lot and get along well with the other residents of Berk. Most importantly, the residents of Berk are glad for the help the Werewolves offer against the threats that face the city.


Russian Werewolves are always in wolf form (they claim that their Communist work ethic prevents them from slacking by assuming their human shape). Despite this, Russian Werewolves are not frighteningly to look at. This is partly because they spend most of their time grinning or laughing, and partly because their features resemble wolf-like dogs like the Siberian husky more than true wild wolves.

Werewolves are typically about the same height as human soldiers, between five and a half and six feet tall. Their build tends toward the lanky, but their love of food means that, without strict military discipline (which is often lacking among werewolves), they often let themselves go and develop a bit of a paunch.

Russian Werewolves love being in uniform and take great pride in their appearance, though their uniforms are often several generations old and threadbare. For this reason, many Werewolves are expert tailors who can spend hours carefully repairing their uniforms.


Russian Werewolves are known for being almost impossible to kill, which goes a long way to explaining their easygoing approach to protecting the world from raiders and mutants. Silver weapons are unknown in the post-post-apocalypse, so nobody has discerned whether such weapons would work better against the Werewolves' famous resilience.

Because Russian Werewolves are always in wolf form, some Librarians believe that they are not true werewolves at all. The Werewolves themselves firmly deny this, and insist that they are definitely genuine werewolves, and besides, what would Librarians know about werewolves?

Their wolflike senses give the Russian Werewolves keen eyesight, exceptional hearing, and a sharp sense of smell. Of these, they are most fond of their sense of smell, which leads them to good food and drink.

While there are several older Russian Werewolves, and Werewolf cubs play in the streets of Berk, nobody has ever seen a female Russian Werewolf. Some theorize that Russian Werewolves' toughness is so great that they can regenerate like starfish, so they reproduce by removing a limb, which then grows into a new Werewolf. Level-headed Librarians who have examined the question believe instead that there are female Russian Werewolves, and they are just as common as the males; they are just indistinguishable from the males. If this is true, then the female Russian Werewolves don't mind going by male names and being referred to using male pronouns.

Species Faction: The First Vladivostok Werewolf Airborne

The Russian Werewolves as a species are indistinguishable from the (allegedly) military unit they belong to, because every Russian Werewolf is ostensibly a member of the First Vladivostok Werewolf Airborne. As such, all Russian Werewolves hold a rank and own a uniform. Even the cubs are referred to as "Cadet."

To a Werewolf, membership in the First Vladivostok is first and foremost a source of camaraderie, as all Werewolves are guaranteed buddies to eat, drink, and game with. Despite their carefree lifestyle, though, Werewolves genuinely care about their responsibilities and take the job of keeping Berk safe, regardless of whose flag it flies (for the record, nobody's).

The First Vladivostok Werewolf Airborne owns a stockpile of solid projectile weaponry and Between-Time energy weapons, but the scarcity of ammunition means that their primary weapons are drawn from their large collection of melee weaponry. Sabers are a special favorite of Russian Werewolves, and those that own these weapons tend to wear them at all times and decorate the hilts and scabbards ostentatiously with tassels, unit patches, pins, and medals.

Russian Werewolf Adventurers

Adventuring parties in Berk do not have to go out of their way to recruit a Russian Werewolf to join their numbers; if anything, they may have to turn several down. Anytime a group of serious adventurers assembles, it is only a matter of time before a Russian Werewolf offers to join their ranks. Some do not bother asking, and instead declare that, as the rightful military leaders of Berk, they are joining the adventuring group, and they will not take "no" for an answer.

The reason for this is twofold: first, no self-respecting Russian Werewolf would turn down an opportunity for danger and excitement, as it makes a Werewolf's fur stand on end and their fangs grind to think of someone having fun without them. Second, they take their boasting seriously when they say that it is up to them to keep the city safe, and as such, they want to do their part.

As (literally) born soldiers, Russian Werewolves make good adventurers, even if their easygoing attitudes sometimes grate on the nerves of their comrades. Their fearlessness, combined with their toughness, make them ideal choices for going first into potentially dangerous areas. As pack animals, Russian Werewolves bond quickly with their adventuring group, and therefore instinctively place themselves between their companions and danger.

1 comment:

  1. "Even the cubs are referred to as "Cadet."" I liked that. I think the personality and ethos of the Russian Werewolves is summed up right there.