The backbone of the Zerg Swarm, Hydralisks are one of the few landborn creatures engineered by the Swarm that can fire at a range. Though made for range, a Hydralisk can hold its own in a forced melee confrontation with its claws and bite. Wherever the Swarm is found, there will likely be ample amounts of Hydralisks to take out its enemies.
Powers and Stats
Name: Hydralisk, originally Slothein or "Caterpillar Cow"
Gender: Presumed Genderless
Classification: Ranged attacker, animal, Zerg Beast | Burrowed attacker, animal, Zerg Beast
Speed: Likely Peak Human travel speed, higher with Muscular Augments, likely with Superhuman reactions. (Are fast enough to ambush peak Protoss warriors) Supersonic+ attack speed. (Hydralisk spines are stated to move at near-hypersonic speeds in the Field Guide)
Lifting Strength: Unknown
Striking Strength: Building Class
Durability: Likely Building level
Stamina: Very high, were evolved solely for combat against the swarm's enemies.
Intelligence: Very Low
Weaknesses: Cannot transform back into a Hydralisk after evolving into a Lurker or Impaler.
- Needle Spines: The primary offensive weapon used by the Hydralisk, the hydralisk launches 30 centimeter long spines at near-hypersonic speed sat the target, with their maximum range being half a kilometer, where it can still pierce 2 centimeters of neosteel. At closer distances, the spines are often seen going half their length into targets, and can be shot in volleys of 14. Hydralisk spines are also stated to be highly poisonous, but what the poison does is not described.
- Muscular Augments: Just as the name implies, the mutation changes the musculature of the Hydralisk, allowing it to move faster. In standard multiplayer, this also increases their range to the same effect of Grooved Spines, which is unavailable.
- Grooved Spines: The Hydralisk's spines can be evolved to be grooved to improve their range, though it is not certain if the stated half a kilometer range includes this evolution.
- Frenzy: Ordinarily, the Hydralisk's aggression is inhibited by it's cerebral cortex. However, the hivemind is able to activate the impulses on the fly, allowing it to fire more rapidly at targets. This cannot be used constantly, however, as the Hydralisk's cortex is too fragile to keep it up.
- Ancillary Carapace: The Hydralisk, by default, was created for an entirely offensive role, its carapace being mostly thin and hollow for ease of movement at the cost of fragility. The Ancillary Carapace mutation evolves redundant plating, providing more protection to the Hydralisk with little cost to the mobility they were designed for.
- Lurker Strain: If the hive evolves their Hydralisk Den into a Lurker Den, then the Hydralisk can evolve into a Lurker, allowing it to shoot even more powerful spines in a 10 meter line around it, hitting all targets in a line, though Lurkers can only attack while burrowed.
- Impaler Strain: If the hive evolves their Hydralisk den into a Impaler Den, then the Hydralisk can evolve into the Impaler. Similarly to the lurker, it can only attack while burrowed, but in contrast shoots a more powerful tentacle to a single target, presumably with the same range.