Giant Bull Netch Replacer
A Creature Mod and Modder's Resource
by Melchior Dahrk
Prior to the game's release, Sload were supposed to have a presence in Morrowind. Michael Kirkbride has some concept art which shows what is labeled a "Sload Floater" (Gasbag Mass Transit) and there was even a concept for a "Skyport". This is a speculative rendering of what a "sload gasbag" may look like based on a combination of Michael Kirkbride's concept art and the appearance of the netch in TES3. This does not explicitly mimic any of the concept art but rather borrows certain features from each and merges them into what could be a cousin or ancestor of the Morrowind Netch. Based on what we know from the game's artwork, the "gasbags" ultimately transformed into the "netch" during development.
My personal head canon is that the netch are descended from the sload floaters which were introduced to the Morrowind ecosystem by Sload merchants. Like much of the other wildlife, the floaters adapted and eventually became the netch. There are much larger sload floaters out there (see the concept art), the one you'll encounter in this mod happens to be a very small one.
This mod doesn't bring the sload to Morrowind, but it does replace the Giant Bull Netch with a Sload Floater. The intention for this specific creature is to be an escaped mass transit gasbag which is now wandering around the Sheogorad region. Apparently Bighead still thinks this is a netch - just a GIANT one - with EYES! Gasbags must be weak to forks. You might find a note hinting at the creature's origins after you fork it to death...
Features of the Design:
- Broken straps on the back hint at the creature's utility before its escape.
- The "eyes" located on the front of the gasbag are actually artificial windows into the interior of this massive beast. Sload are right at home in the slimy jelly.
- Similar to the netch, the gasbag has internal sacks filled with magical vapors. But unlike its cousin, the gasbag spews these vapors out of meaty tubes on its underside to help generate more lift for their comparatively massive bulk.
- Banners decorate the sides of the gasbag, advertising its owner's merchandise.
- Although this gasbag managed to destroy its accessories, they are typically seen with structures built right onto their enormous backs to accommodate more delicate passengers who balk at the notion of immersing in the jelly chamber with the sload.
Saint_Jiub - netch bristles texture source
Remiros - Intelligent Textures for some texture sources
Nobiax - jelly & carapace texture source