|This article is about the creatures and life forms. For the Drop of the same name, see Patch 7/01/2014.|
Strain creatures are a sentient species derived from the biological entity known as The Strain.
The Strain refers to the collective group of corrupted creatures, humanoids, and other living organisms who serve the dark force known as the Entity. These creatures are mutated abominations, often with enhanced physical attributes, defensive capabilities, and unique attacks. Within the Strain, there are creatures of both the sentient and bestial variety. All serve the Entity and its goal of transforming and "perfecting" life on Nexus via the bio-phage. Strain creatures are capable of spreading the bio-phage with ease, though more powerful Strain servants are able to completely corrupt the environment around them - creatures and inanimate objects alike - using their abilities in acute manipulation of the Primal Elements granted by the Entity.
Most Strain creatures are horrifying to behold. They tend to have deep violet and cyan colors as a replacement to their old bodies, often with slimy, broken skin, exposed bones, and organs that pulsate a grotesque yellow color as a result of the bio-phage's mutations. It is also not uncommon to see additional appendages or organs entirely. The bio-phage often appends extra eyes, claws, and carapaces in Strain creatures, the intent being to enhance the creature's natural capabilities.
Corruption is a bio-mechanical process used by the Entity to transform organisms according to its dark and twisted designs. Despite the clear biological attributes of The Strain, corruption applies to both life and technology alike. This corruption can be present in the form of the bio-phage and the techno-phage. Once corrupted, an organism is susceptible to control - whether by the Entity itself, or its more powerful minions such as the Skurge.
The Entity achieves the process of corrupting organisms through the use of the bio-phage - a dark and viscous substance that contains the microscopic organisms that are responsible for transforming the host, resulting in the aforementioned growths and anomalies that enhance the creature's natural capabilities. It also causes the infected creature to become extremely aggressive towards anything that is not infected with the Strain.
Like any disease, it may see some score of difficulty in infecting some organisms as a result of the creature's immune system. Unfortunately, the bio-phage is so powerful and advanced that no creature is immune, and even creatures with the strongest defenses will fall in a matter of a couple days. The Eldan attempted to analyze this procedure via tasking The Caretaker with analyzing the Strain, which has been documented in DATACUBE ENTRY: Uncatalogued Agent.
The techno-phage is a nanotech form of bio-phage corruption which is responsible for transforming technology so that it serves the Entity. The techno-phage allows the Strain to control Eldan technology, including everything from massive Eldan Annihilators and the titanic weapons inside Grimvault, to things as minor as an Eldan Probe. The techno-phage is a constant danger to all machines, especially more complex and capable constructs like the Mechari and Freebots.
The techno-phage can infect virtually any equipment, however it seems to leave equipment that would be useless to infect alone. It specifically targets sources of knowledge or power, for instance, it may attempt to overtake Primal Focuses to grant more power to the Entity's arsenal. The Eldan were aware of this problem and attempted to take preventative measures, one instance being logged by Shaper Koral in DATACUBE ENTRY: Preemptive Disassembly.
The Strain often uses the bio-phage to take over natural environments to aid in the Entity's desires to see everything. There are a number of methods employed by the Entity, for instance, the creation of Eyestalks - short, pole-like protrusions that jut out of the ground and contain a large bulb at the top with about a dozen eyes gazing in all directions. Jabbits are also seen in a corrupted form with a large eye in the back of their mouth and a notable lack of the otherwise regular aggression most infected creatures exhibit. Jabbits are often ignored by most creatures given their nature, so using them for covert surveillance is relatively easy given that most individuals don't even mind them in the first place. Finally, many locations in Southern Grimvault and Western Grimvault contain massive, towering eyes growing in the sides of hills, constantly observing those who pass by them.
Incompatibility With Exanite
Despite the sheer power and effectiveness the Strain has on corrupting environments and creatures, Exanite has qualities that allow it to naturally repel the Strain. These qualities were documented in DATACUBE ENTRY: Repellent Frequencies by Maker Vorion. This attribute is likely derived from how the Strain is designed. As a result of a critical error during the creation of The Genesis Prime, which was documented by The Caretaker in DATACUBE ENTRY: Fatal Deviation, two beings were created: the Entity, and Drusera. These two seem to be polar opposites of each other, and while Drusera didn't create the first Exanite despite her affinity towards its perfect nature (comparable to how the Entity created the Strain), the two elements seem to be extremely incompatible with each other.