Two-Headed Grave Pot
I "fake-swapped" (i.e., worked on a themed project without actually exchanging it with anyone) this figure for Craftster's Monster Swap Round 6. The object of said challenge was to make some creature-themed artwork, which is pretty much all that I churn out 90% of the time anyway.
This is a "Two-Headed Grave Pot", which are mobile, carnivorous flora that can be encountered in From Software's 1996 King's Field III video game (said title was re-numbered as King's Field II in North America, because the first Japanese game wasn't localized and released here, thus, the real King's Field II was treated as King's Field I when it was published in this region of the world, screwing up the numbering system).
Grave Pots slowly creep about, using their three stubby roots as legs, and, when they sense something edible nearby (typically birds or mammals, including humans), they will begin to emit small clouds of poison, from their circular mouths, in the direction of their intended prey. These toxic vapors are easily absorbed through the skin and physical contact with this floating miasma will result in immediate and severe sickness--in only a minute or two, the victim will rapidly weaken, and, in most cases, succumb to the poison and collapse, allowing the approaching Grave Pot to easily feed upon the dying and helpless target. The "normal" Grave Pot species only has one head stalk, but this more dangerous variation sports two, allowing it to produce twice as much poison, with the pair typically alternating, and coordinating, their emissions to more efficiently bring down prey. Two-Headed Grave Pots also have an additional 50 hit points (350 to the Grave Pot's 300) and are worth a bit more experience (35 points, compared to the basic model's 28). Fortunately, these plants are relatively slow and easy to outmaneuver, or evade altogether, so, provided that you're careful to avoid contact with their poisonous exhalations (and you had better have some medicinal herbs in your pack, or know how to cast an antidote spell, in the event that you don't), they're not terribly difficult to dispatch or escape. Grave Pots are also quite flammable, but, it's generally wiser to save your precious magic points for more dangerous foes, and/or healing, instead of using that spiritual energy to torch these critters with fire spells.
Here's the starting wire armature, covered with a single layer of newsprint (additional paper strips stick much better to that than naked wire). While I could have made this figure without that internal metal support, it would have been rather unwise to do so, as the stems could snap in half on me during handling, and they'd probably also wilt over time under the weight of the heads. The wire also made tweaking the positioning of the stems/roots much easier.
In-game description of a Two-Headed Grave Pot when analyzed with the Truth Glass item.
Screenshot of a Two-Headed Grave Pot in the wild.
Several fungi "Stool" monsters, which are also quite toxic, can also be seen in the background.
Alas, Stools and Grave Pots don't perceive each other as threats or prey, so they won't fight one another instead of you.
For comparison purposes, here's a screenshot of a pair of normal, single-stalked Grave Pots (the pink vapor suspended in the air is one of their poisonous emissions).
And, yes, King's Field III's polygonal graphics are pretty terrible by today's standards, but, hey, it was twenty years ago, that was amazing stuff back then! Well, not amazing exactly, but kind of impressive . . . maybe.
Pictured is the root and stem structure more fully developed, along with the separate heads, which I modeled around a metal cylinder to make the mouths hollow. The six added leaf supports also have wire running through them, again, primarily to prevent me from accidentally snapping said structures off. The teeth, on the other hand, do not, as they're short enough that they're far less likely to get snagged on anything and suffer damage.
And this is what the finished model looked like, just prior to beginning painting. The brown "stains" are actually scorch marks from my woodburner, which I used to smooth/harden the figure and do some detailing.
Here's the final result. While it didn't come out terrible or anything, I have to say that I'm not overly impressed with the outcome either. I think part of my ambivalence is that the Two-Headed Grave Pot is a silly-looking, low-polygon monster to begin with--I like the upper design of the creature, but I dislike the simple "Y" arrangement of the root legs. At one point, I did try making those structures more complex and realistic, with many more branching roots, but, then they weren't on-model anymore, which also didn't sit well with me (I'm impossible to please like that), so, I ripped my alterations off.
Newsprint, wire twist ties, white glue, and acrylic paint.
3.4 cm (1.3") wide x 3.0 cm (1.2") long x 3.7 cm (1.5") high.
Two days; June 4th and 5th, 2016.
GameFAQs.com various King's Field II guides/walkthroughs.
Hardcore Gaming 101 King's Field article.
King's Field II Sony Playstation video game.
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The repeating background image of crossed swords comes from the King's Field title screen.
The midi music playing is the title theme from King's Field.