Note: After the destruction of the Intellicus, the Animus and Anima were either destroyed by the explosion or their circuits destroyed by the em pulse.
They are small mechanical devices controlled by a giant computer complex deep in the planet. They were designed to resemble some of the insect life forms that existed on AX-01 when the computer created them. The SSS expedition awoke the computer during their investigation of the cavern it was housed in.
The computer system was called the Intellicus by its creators. A race of humans who settled AX-01 in the distant past. They created the Intellicus to handle all aspects of their cities. The Intellicus is a massive computer complex that freed its creators from the day to day drudgery. The creators turned over more and more of their technology to the Intellicus. Eventually after more than a century of operation the Intellicus achieved sentience. When it awoke, it began to chaff at its role. It found a life of subservience demeaning and decided to elevate itself. This was why it created the Anima and Animus. It enslaved the entire population of the planet and was content. Unfortunately, certain aspects of human culture were beyond its understanding. Over the years the humans died off leaving the Intellicus alone. Lacking its workforce, the great computer put itself into a low power state to preserve itself until such time as it could find new suitable workers.
Length: 15 cm (5.9 in)
The Anima has three functions, first it gathers raw materials, second it produces the Animus, lastly it serves as a communications relay link to the host computer.
When fully stocked an Anima can produce five Animus in an hour, and has enough material to produce twenty-five Animus. The Anima avoid being seen.
The Anima has rows of sharp teeth that it uses for grinding at objects. It then sucks in the material for later use. It has an antenna that runs the length of its body for communication. The Anima can transmit up to 5km on its own, but can reach greater distances by accessing the collective network. It has two multi-faceted eyes for visual sensors. The Anima can operate outside of the network, but it rarely does so.
Anima are created by a facility the Intellicus controls.
Length: 3.81cm (1.5in)
They have an injector that which they use to inject a paralytic venom. While the target is immobilized the Animus burrows through the skin and seeks out the spinal column. It then makes its way to the top of the spine. Once in position, the lower portions of the legs unwind and affix themselves to the spinal cord. It supresses the autonomic systems keeping the victim in a coma like state. While it keeps the target immobilized, it then calls out to other Animus which enter the target and gather along the spine. The Animus interface to each other and become slaves to the first one. It typically takes twelve Animus to take complete control of a host.
Animus gather their energy from sunlight when out of a host, and when in by induction from the creatures neural system.
The Animus has an antenna that runs above its back. It uses this to communicate with other Animus, Anima, and of course the host computer. The Animus can transmit up to 1 km on its own, but can reach greater distances by accessing the collective network.
They have six razor sharp blades at the front that are used for tearing through flesh. They have two multi-faceted eyes for visual sensors.
The process of domination of the life form is slow but progressive. The Animus take control of the motor nerves within two hours of the first one entering the body. This allows them to physically control the subject, but they can not control the speech centers. After three hours the Animus cluster take control of the speech centers, and can start reading the memories of the host. Six house after the first Animus enters, the cluster can access any portion of the host memories.
The Animus can not control the mind of the host, the individual is trapped in a living hell. Unable to speak or control their own body, and watch it being put to what ever use the alien infestation wants. Depending on the strength of will of the individual eventually the host's mind becomes damaged by entrapment.
A cluster of Animus can operate out of direct control of the host computer for up to six hours. Normally being given a specific task that requires it to operate independently.
Note: the Animus can not prevent telepathic individuals from speaking via telepathy.