Get Serious...Sam!

Monday, November 27, 2000






Game Artwork

On this page, we'll provide you with fresh work-in-progress materials. Expect some sketches, models, renderings and in-game screenshots, together with background descriptions.
New stuff will be added as we put some things in shape suitable for public.


Besides recruiting primitive races and animals, using robots and raising dead, Mental also employs genetical engineering to provide special purpose forces for its armies. Bio-Mechanoids are one of the meanest of species grown in Mental's biological factories. They are created from a single cell of bird tissue which is implanted with pre-programmed chromosomes. The cell is then put in large tanks of protein soup where it starts dividing until it grows out to be a complete organism. The genes are adjusted so that it grows body structures which are similar to mechanical parts in structure. Those provide it with extreme power even under heavy conditions, and are subject to repairing using ordinary mechanical tools.

A bio-mech eats a little, but keeps a storage of electrical energy in biological batteries inside its huge body. Those batteries which are recharged by connecting to external power supply, are power source for running its mechanical legs and rocket launchers.

Bio-mechanoid generally looks like a large bulk of meat fixed on top of two long mechanical legs. On the front of the meat bulk, there is a small face, and on the sides, its weapons are attached. They come in two versions. Smaller ones are 15 feet tall and armed with laser guns, while larger stand up to 30 feet and have two rocket launchers. Although not specially smart, a bio-mech moves fast on its long legs and provides enough firepower to confront a whole squad of earth forces.


 Beheaded Kamikaze

Some of the executions come out bad, and the head gets damaged. Since those are not useful for anything else, they get recruited to Kamikaze squads. They are given two bombs, one to carry in each hand. When they spot an enemy, they run straight on him and when they get close enough, they detonate both bombs at the same time, blowing the opponent together with themselves. Without the head, they couldn't see or hear, so their LCU is fitted with an additional passive infrared camera. It is just enough to make them spot the enemy and run towards it. 

They have white trousers and no T-shirt (they'll be out of order soon anyway, so why would they need a shirt?), and the handle is still there in the neck. To make additional effectiveness, Mental attached a primitive sound generator, which gives terrifying sound when they run. That makes them easy to detect, so they cannot really sneak behind Sam. It was very useful against plain Earth forces, though. Soldiers were usually petrified with fear when they heard the sound and they just waited to be blown away. 

Sam is too brave to be afraid of such a thing, so he just ignores the effect of the sound. Still, he prefers to kill them when they are far away instead of getting his new trousers burned by the explosion.


 Gnaar - Mutant One-Eyed Gimp from the Sirius Sewer System

Entire ancient nation of Sirius was wiped out by the Notorious Mental. But even if it wasn't, it is doubtful whether some of their scientists would be able to answer the questions of Gnaar origin. Whether nature really did a nasty joke on them by itself, or are they a by-product of some weird genetic experiments? Did they become so twisted by successive mutations caused by toxic waste they ate somewhere in the sewers deep below the Sky City of Sirius, or did they come unregistered from outer space on some of the cargo ships, managed to sneak pass the quarantine checks, and found their home in the sewers? No one will ever know. But they were always just small pests living in the sewers and eating junk or any other inhabitants of sewers that were unlucky to be smaller then them.

These animals resemble small bipeds, because they have two legs and two arms. But they have no head and no hands. Instead of hands, each arms ends up with just a single claw. Males are purple in size and more common then females, which are green. Large mouth with several uneven rows of sharp pointed teeth is just a hole in the middle of their potato-like bodies. Above the mouth, there is only one large lidless eye. The large eye collects even smallest amounts of light and enables them to see in the dark. Having very short digestive cycle, Gnaars are condemned to be ever hungry and always seek something to eat. Being very stupid, they only concentrate on seeking for food and getting it into their big mouth. Their handless arms are not useful for anything then just pushing some smaller creature into their mouth and eating it.

People from Sirius never bothered with them too much, as Gnaars would usually run away when maintenance teams were repairing the sewer systems. They only saw their non-blinking eyes gleaming faintly far away for a moment and then Gnaars disappeared with sounds of distant snorting they made when breathing through their deformed mouth. But when Mental came to the possession of Sky City, it was delighted to see such dirty creatures in so great numbers so near to his headquarters. So it recruited them as war dogs. In Mental's army, Gnaars are fed with synthetic food and vitamins to make them grow to be half of a size of an average human. Mental also has some of them genetically changed to be able to morph in such a way to have their legs and arms retracted into their body and then they levitate using simple telekinesis powers.

The Gnaars are very common in the Mental's army, where they do not serve in the real meaning of that word. They are just trained not to try to eat any of the other recruits or officers, so they wonder around cleaning any organic waste by simply eating it, and attacking any intruder, also in order to eat him.
Being smaller and unarmed, they are not of great harm to Serious Sam, but they are tough and much harder to kill than Beheaded soldiers, because they are fed up with vitamins. Sam doesn't like to get circled with them, since they are unpleasant punchers and biters.



A primitive sentient race, which presumably evolved from some kind of arthropods on some far away planet, Arachnoids are Mental's minions in true sense. Their barbarian myths describe how they originally had pincers on both their hands and were living like animals. Then a god came which gave them a fist for their right hand so they could bear weapons to fight a holly war. Strange enough, the war includes extinguishing any intelligent race their god shows to them. Perhaps Mental really had something to do with that strange evolution path, or maybe it just spotted where the nature gave it a fine opportunity for playing an evil messiah. Anyway, the Arachnoids are now part of Mental's regular army at least for a several thousands years already.

In appearance, an Arachnoid resembles a giant scorpion whose cephalothorax extends in erect body with a head on top of a short neck and with two hands. While its left hand has large pincers like scorpions do, the right one bears ordinary galactic-wide popular manipulation organ -- a five-fingered fist with opposed thumb. Its entire body is covered with large plates of chitinous exoskeleton. The Arachnoids unlike most sentient races do not have limited life-cycles. They have ordinary ectothermous metabolism, and they live as long as they have enough food and/or don't get killed by something or someone, what is, in their society, the most usual way to die. By being killed by someone of their own kind, in the fight for supremacy.  All of the species in combat appear to be female, and no males have ever been encountered. Apparently, the males must live somewhere on their home planet, but seem to be inferior sex and are not allowed to involve in wars. Neither the appearance of an Arachnoid male nor anything about their nature is known to human scientists.

The female species call themselves Sych-Ark, meaning 'holly warriors' and they are dedicated to serving their god and fight frantically the last drop of their cold blood. Their favorite weapon is chain-gun, which is usually equipped by a technomagical ammo-replentisher, courtesy of Mental itself. When they spot an enemy, they usually get so excited they cannot stop firing. They don't usually care if they hit any of the minor races in Mental's service in the process. When approached too closely, they use their deadly sting.
Young warriors that are only a ten or so years old are brown-yellow in color, only 10 feet tall, and just about something like that long, not counting their long tail. As they mature, after about a hundred years, their exoskeleton turns red. They most usually grow up to be about 20-25 feet big. Elders that are more than a thousand years old are very rare and extremely dangerous. Hardened in countless fights they are wicked and vicious. Their plates turn blue with spots of rusty color where they are no more able to heal their old wounds as before, and they are sized like a smaller house.  These ones are not a joke. They are serious enemies.

 Beheaded Rocketeer

Although it is the most commonly met enemy, the Beheaded Rocketeer is, like most others, not in fact a real Mental's minions. It is a zombie controlled by Mental's supernatural powers. All the way since first confrontations with Earth's armies, Mental has killed millions of human soldiers. It also practiced mass-executions of captured humans, usually by decapitation, as it pleased its ill nature the most. Being  very rational on the other side, it never throws any useful material away. So it commonly uses it's powers to raise such victims from dead in large numbers and refit them for simple working or military functions. Beheaded Rocketeers are the simplest model, usually serving as low level slaves or cannon fodder. Those are always recruited from simple human soldier grunts, usually still wearing their original uniforms. Mental's forces, being usually remote-controlled by supernatural powers, don't really care about uniforms much. 

All beheaded species are fitted with a Life Control Unit (LCU), which is implanted it their upper spine, just below the neck, where it controls both primary and vegetative nervous system of the host body, keeping it alive and obeying. LCU provides simple control of the body functions and receives general simple commands from the Mental's headquarters via a built-in sub-etha radio receiver. Being beheaded, they could not see or hear anything, so they carry their head, usually in a hand and the LCU then reads audio/visual information received by the head's eyes and ears using a short range telepathic receiver.

Rocketeers are mostly used for simple labor purposes, but also armed for range combat, by adding a simple magic missile launcher. Magic missile launcher is a primitive technomagical device that draws power from underlying magic flux usually present in any point in time-space and launches magical missiles of low energy. Since it is very low consuming, it can function all around the universe, even in low-magic areas, and can be operated automatically, not requiring its operator to have supernatural power. Bonus feature for those projectiles is that one who carries a launcher cannot be harmed by one, which is good for Mental, since those LCUs are not very smart pieces of hardware, and Rocketeers tend to aim badly and often hit each other.

Species that Sam meets when he returns to Egypt are not humans but Sirians. Just as Mental used human victims against humans themselves, it also used Sirians during the genocide at Sirius. When Sam returns to the past, he ends up in the time after Mental defeated the Sirians and then, there were lots of Sirian beheaded soldiers in its armies.

Overall, a Beheaded Rocketeer looks a lot like a common human soldier. He is wearing standard army boots of the Sirian forces, military trousers, and a T-shirt. In his left hand he carries his original head and instead of his right hand, a magic missile launcher is implanted. LCU appears as small box at the top of his back.
Although he is in appearance something like a healthy human, he is in fact dead. So he is not really a proper opponent to the Serious Sam, more of just a little distraction. Sam kills them by giving them a hard look.


 Beheaded Firecracker

The Beheaded Firecracker is also a beheaded cyber-zombie recruited among soldier corpses. This is a bit more advanced version armed with a four-barrel semiautomatic magic missile launcher. Firecrackers carry a chainsaw for their work assignments and close range encounters. The LCU is same as the one used in Rocketeers.

The missiles fi red from the launcher are improved with ability to run along the floor, climb low stairs, jump over small obstacles and even turn around corners a bit. Missiles are neither intelligent nor homing, but just keep their original firing direction, while sliding over or around obstacles. 

The uniform he wears is still the same but painted red to make Firecrackers easier to distinguish from Rocketeers by commanding officers, who may sometimes be organic, live, and still caring a bit of colors. Since his right hand is already busy carrying the chain saw, the missile launcher is implanted in the mouth of the head he caries in the left hand.

Firecrackers fire the four missiles in succession, effectively covering large areas on the floor, but those are not very effective, and Sam can still get rid of those by giving them a hard look.


 Beheaded Bomber

Yet another kind of undead soldier, Bombers are designed for combat only. They have their pockets full of special grenades, which they throw at intruders. The grenades are Mental's hack, a mo dified version of high-tech pyrotechnic toys used by old civilization of Sirius. Those were joke-bombs, of a peanut size, which inflate to a size of a generic cartoon bomb with a fuse when thrown. Originally, the explosion was just a dramatic effect for making fun on national holidays, but Mental got a grab of the design and changed it to be a deadly weapon. That way, bombers can carry large amounts of those bombs, which are very small and light, but inflate to real bombs as necessary.

Their uniform was painted white on their trousers. They carry their head in their left hand and throw grenades with the right one.
Even if they are just as easy to kill as Rocketeers and Firecrackers, their weaponry is much more deadly, so Sam must take great care not to play a sitting duck when faced with one or more of those. They are not smart, and usually kill lots of their own forces with the bombs, but Mental doesn't really care about that much. 

Also, there is known problem with the bombs, which Mental never cared to fix. When the Bomber gets killed, he falls to the floor and that induces a shock to the bombs. The bombs then get unstable and explode. Not very clever to be near when that happens.


 Kleer Skeleton

Kleers were an old intelligent race living on the planet Kleer, the third planet in the stellar system of Sirius. Their planet was once a big blue-green sphere, much like what the ancient earth used to look like. Half of the surface was covered with great seas, and the land half was covered with vast forests. Since Sirius is a dual star, the planets there have weirdest orbits. The Kleer has such an orbit around the two suns that it has mild weather all around the year and in all areas on the planet. Except for very limited polar areas, there are no climatic differences. No tropic parts, no winters, no summers, only a constant spring. Life used to bloom there once. There were unseen evergreen forests wherever one looked, and millions of various creatures lived there.

Kleers resembled kangaroos a bit, since they had two strong legs with hooves for jumping and a long tail for keeping the balance. Their long arms reached the floor and they used them for walking and running. Generally, they were very gentle beings. Their body was muscular but still soft and covered with fine fur. They had small straight horns on their head and very sympathetic faces.

Kleers were the only intelligent race on the planet, and because the nature was always very generous to them, they never needed to develop any technology. They lived in large communities in the forest and lead very busy cultural life, singing songs, dancing and telling tales of great hunts. Didn't actually build houses, or write books, because they had no fingers. They just lived in the woods and hunted. But they were still a very developed nation, with strong cultural background. After many milleniums of civilization without technology, Kleers trained their supernatural mental abilities like telekinesis, telepathy and conjuration. Their favorite hunting technique was conjuring twoball weapon and throwing it at the prey. They considered the hunt an art, and did it with predetermined protocol, which involved hitting the prey several times with the twoball and then jumping on it to finish it with their hands or horns.

People of Sirius never bothered the Kleers, they left them live where they were, and the Kleers never showed any desire to leave their planet or learn any technology. Sirians had a lot of other uninhabited planets to discover and exploit, so they didn't see any need to involve further with Kleers.

When Mental attacked Sirius, it aimed for the Sirians first, not for the Kleers, because Kleers were completely harmless in his opinion. Sirians asked Kleers to help them, to use their mental powers to stop the Mental, but Kleers were too self-centered and too happy on their little planet to even understand the situation for real. Since they never lead any wars, the whole concept was entirely alien to them. Soon, the Mental overruled, and the Sirians were wiped out entirely. Not a single child was left alive.

When the Kleers understood what the last desperate call for help from the Sirians meant, it was already too late. Suddenly, they realized that they failed to help their good neighbors. And they were completely confused. They started arguing busily. What could they have done? Why didn't they do it? How come they could have been so blind? Some few Kleers started to argue on what they can do, and how they can revenge the Sirians, but the entire concept was so strange, that most didn't understand what they actually meant by revenge. They didn't even have that word in their language. Most Kleers didn't see the reason why would Mental attack them. They had nothing to do with the Sirians, they never bother Mental, and never had any hunter-pray relationship with it, so why would they have to do anything.

In its telepathic mind, Mental saw what was going on within the Kleers. It didn't really consider that they would ever attack it, but it decided to wipe those out too. Just to be on the safe side, or just for fun. It didn't matter to it. It just sent an automated war-fleet to throw seven millions of tons of inflamed napalm on their woods. In one long horrifying day, the entire land part of the planet was incinerated. Kleers had nowhere to go. Some were burned right where they were. Some tried to run away, but it was not a simple forest fire. No matter where they ran, the flames were everywhere. Males, females, children and the old, Kleers and the other animals, the trees, everything. They were all dead. Only the ashes remained. Ashes and millions of Kleer skeletons. From then, Kleer is a dark planet, surrounded with a layer of dense smoke and dust, which never settled down.

Kleer ghosts now wonder the dark wastelands of the dead planet and never settle down. And the Kleer skeletons are left to lie down under the burned trees and never see the sun again. Well... almost. Mental's devilish mind has come to a great idea. Having so many fresh skeletons and their accompanying uneasy ghosts, it considered it a great material for rising dead. So it put its supernatural mind to work and created as many undead Kleers as it could find suitable skeletons for.

The Kleer Skeletons are now among the fiercest of Mental's forces. They are undead and uneasy, and they do not care of anything else, but to fire their rage at anyone Mental unleashes them at.

Although left without most of their mental powers, they have still kept the ability to conjure twoball projectiles and they are very deadly, both at the far range and with their long sharp hand-bones. Anyway, that is not something Serious Sam couldn't handle with a good two-barreled shotgun hit in the face.


 Sirian Werebull

Strange cattle-like spieces whose front legs have fingers instead hoofs and elbows turned backwards like primates or lizzards, Sirian Werebull was given its name by human scientists. No written materials left by the Sirians mention such a creature. Since DNA analysis showed that they have significant part of their genome very similar to that of Sirians, and therefore must be some kind of a cross-breed or clone created by mixing humanoid Sirians with some kind of cattle, they were named Werebulls. However, it is unknown exactly where they came from and how they were created. Some suppose that they were a product of illegal genetic engineering by Sirians themselves, while others argue that the Werebulls were created by the Mental itself.

Anyway, that is irrelevant now. Werebulls generally look much like huge bulls with horns turned downwards, while the front part of their strong body look awfully human. Their front legs are in fact big oversized hands with elbows turned backward just like human hands, and they have palms with fingers and opposed thumb. Still, they are just stupid animals, unable to use their hands for manipulation at all. They behave much like any other ordinary cattle. Mental uses them mainly as labour force, but they can also attack enemies like bulls usually do. By charging with their head down, or by stabbing with their horns from close range. They are not immune to pain, but even more, it just makes them more angry. One cannot stop a Werebull by hurting it. You must pray you have enough firepower to blow it away before it gets you. If you don't, well, you better either prepare to run for cover or play a matador.

While Sam can evade their charging attack with relative ease when they are alone, in the midst of a combat, or when there is more than one Werebull attacking at once, they can be a real pain in the rear. Literally.


 Stay tuned for more...


Power Plant at
Sky City.

Approaching the Black Monoliths

Oh No!  Werebull from the left!

Watch out for those Bio-Mechs!

Do you want to see more?  Head over to the screenshots section!




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