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As a horror shooter, BioShock (and its sequel, to a lesser extent) liked to occasionally play tricks on the player, silently spawning enemies next to them at certain points and even duping them into helping people who then try to kill them. Well-realized as those events are, though, they are all scripted, and wouldn't be as effective in co-op, where your partner may already know what's ahead. Additionally, the very nature of co-op presents the potential for the game to turn the players against each other. To this intent I came up with a Splicer designed for the sole purpose of messing with the player's minds: the Hypno Splicer.
Awarded at random:
- +Damage Against Hypno Splicers
- Condition Resistance (any non-damaging negative effect on you is less effective)
- Damage Reflection (enemies inflict weaker versions of the attacks they use against you upon themselves)
Description: Stage One
Initially, Hypno Splicers would appear unarmed, just like a wandering Houdini Splicer. However, in combat they'd create Decoys of nearby Splicers and themselves, which'd also have the ability to move around and even attack the player for reduced damage. These Decoys would split from the original Splicer, making it near impossible to tell the difference between them. Thankfully, these Decoys would also have very low health, making them disposable at best.
Tier One Mutations
- Damage Redirection: Attacking the Elite Hypno Splicer's Decoys inflicts a lesser version of the offender's attacks upon themselves.
- Suicide Decoys: Elite Hypno Splicer's Decoys explode upon death. In the case of a Stage Two Thuggish Splicer Decoy, the explosions stack into a more powerful one.
- Subterfuge: Elite Hypno Splicer and its Decoys turn momentarily invisible upon spawning a Decoy (Decoys can't spawn Decoys, though).
Evolution: Stage Two
While a Splicer capable of spawning doppelgangers may initially work well against the players, it'd quickly lose its potency once the latter upgrade their arsenal. In consequence, the Hypno Splicer would have to add another ability to their toolset: Enrage. Obviously, it wouldn't force the target player to attack the other; rather, it'd cause them to hallucinate, seeing and hearing things that aren't there. Their partner would appear as another enemy and, to add insult to injury, the targeted player would momentarily black out and wake up disoriented. It'd also enable friendly fire, potentially causing massive chaos. If tricked to use it on another enemy, it'd simply Hypnotize them as with Hypnotize level 1.
Tier Two Mutations
- Nightmarish Hallucinations: Hallucination effect is even more intense and unnerving, and the Enraged target takes increased damage from the Elite Hypno Splicer, its Decoys and their allies.
- Confused Rage: Targets Enraged by the Elite Houdini Splicer inflict self-damage with every attack.
- Toxic Excess: Targets Enraged by the Elite Houdini Splicer emit a poisonous cloud around them, dealing continuous damage to allies within the cloud.
Evolution: Final Stage
With Hypnotize at its disposal, Hypno Splicers could be able to deal as much damage to the players as the latter could themselves. However, by this point the players might have found a way to circumvent the effects of the hallucinations and target the Hypno Splicer directly. With respect to this, towards the endgame they could gain the ability to shapeshift, that is temporarily give themselves the appearance and attributes of any other non-machine enemy type. However, they wouldn't be able to use the full toolset of the enemy they're morphing into, and would maintain the same amount of health as they transform. If they spawn Decoys while morphed, those Decoys would have the appearance and (limited) abilities of the enemy whose shape the Splicer assumed.
Tier Three Mutations
- Reincarnation: Upon death, the Elite Hypno Splicer will emerge in spectral form out of their body and move towards one of their Decoys. If they connect, the Elite Hypno Splicer resurrects in the body of their Decoy, regaining full health. The spectral form has low health and can be damaged as per normal.
- Unstable Creations: Elite Hypno Splicer's Decoys each spawn with their own mutation (or mutations).
- Master of Disguise: Elite Hypno Splicer and its Decoys have full access to the toolset of the enemy they're transformed into.
And that wraps up the standard-type Splicers! Up next, special Splicer types!