Phoenix Logs/Flood Units

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Bursters

Underground lurkers.

Bursters are carrier forms that erupt from the ground, simultaneously releasing their cache of parasites and spores.

Bursters guard Flood blightlands, and will attack any interlopers within the parasite's twisted domain.

Infected

The lost and the damned.

Flood-infected sentients serve the parasite as tools and weapons while simpler creatures are twisted into foul abominations that seek only to devour and fuel the parasite's growth. There is no cure or treatment that can save these victims, and even death may not save their consciousness from being absorbed into the Flood collective for later use.

Though their bodies are bent to the Flood's will, occasionally the victim can still whisper for mercy or cry out in pain from ruined lips and half-consumed throats. Or worse, the parasite will speak on their behalf, using stolen thoughts and memories as a psychological weapon.

Most infantry and vehicles with a living crew who take lethal damage from Flood are converted into Infected units. Exceptions include non-organic units (Sentinels), Huragok living machines (Engineers), the enigmatic Lekgolo (Hunters), and Super units (who self-destruct when compromised). Heroes also ensure they are not taken by the Flood.

Infected vehicles are hideously warped versions of their former selves, their crew having been converted into spore-packed pustules and mucus-like growths which hold the damaged vehicle together. Infected vehicles are weaker than their uninfected counterparts, but when they are destroyed infection forms have a chance of bursting from the wreckage.

Infected infantry mutate into combat forms that retain the weaponry they had before conversion. Infected infantry gain a powerful tentacle-scythe melee attack and the ability to leap short distances.

Pod Infectors

Once the parasite can establish a hive it can begin to produce massive numbers of infection forms that spread out in search of new sentients to infect, and non-sapient animals on which to feed. Both ground and airborne infection forms are used as living weapons, hurling themselves at the enemy to overwhelm defenses and assimilate the unprepared.

Pods hurl themselves at infantry units, bursting and dealing damage. If Pods get the killing blow their victim becomes Infected and falls under Flood control. Though individually weak and easily killed, pod infectors strike in vast numbers and can move over cliffs.

Blisters

Incubation chambers.

Non-sentient animals or corpses not harnessed for combat forms are seeded with Flood cells and transformed into infection form-filled sacs. These diseased growths are one of the most pernicious aspects of the Flood, and a single spore could potentially transform an entire planet's biosphere into quivering masses of diseased mucus and bile if left unchecked.

Blisters "hatch" infection forms when disturbed. Destroying them at a distance is almost always the best option.

Seeder Infectors

Once the parasite can establish a hive it can begin to produce massive numbers of infection forms that spread out in search of new sentients to infect, and non-sapient animals on which to feed. Both ground and airborne infection forms are used as living weapons, hurling themselves at the enemy to overwhelm defenses and assimilate the unprepared.

Seeders are lighter-than-air Flood units that swim through the sky and attack aerial units. If a Seeder gets the killing blow, the crew are overwhelmed and the aircraft becomes Infected. Seeders only infect aircraft, but will "spit" shards of bone at ground targets.

Spore Mound

Infected wounds.

Spore Mounds are an agglomeration of lesser Flood forms and secretions that conceal and protect the foul nests of the parasite. Though mere hills compared to what is to come, the Spore Mounds which have sprouted on the Ark and survived Sentinel cleansing efforts are incredibly dangerous.

Spore Mounds act as an Abomination leader for nearby Flood, in addition to producing new units.

Abomination

Hive commanders.

A massive key mind war-form, the Abomination brings order and direction to the lesser Flood, turning feral parasites into a cunning and efficient collective. An evolved form of the Juggernaut command form, these towering nightmares are used when standard hives cannot be established and the Flood must stay mobile to avoid detection and destruction.

Abominations increase the speed and health of all nearby Flood units. As the parasite grows in strength, it will construct attack waves around these "generals". Blunting their onslaught requires making a difficult choice between attacking the Abomination or prioritizing the smaller, more immediate threats.

Infester

Anti-vehicle war-forms.

The Infester is a pure form that specializes in cracking open vehicles and converting their crew into Flood-controlled puppets. A purpose-built biological weapon, Infesters expend all of their energy on the attack, collapsing in a dying heap and spreading spores upon the completion of their singular task.

The Infester is adapted to the task of countering and subverting armored vehicles used by the UNSC and Banished. Though they can attack infantry and structures with barbed tentacles, their goal is to hunt manned vehicles. When they detect mechanized prey, the Infester grabs onto it with their tentacles and bores into the hull to reach the crew. This process can be interrupted, similar to the Hijack ability. if the infestation is successful, however, the vehicle is infected and the Infester dies.

Spawners

Nightmare birthing chambers.

Spawners are pure forms that gestate new infection forms in their diseased brood sacs, releasing swarms of new parasites. Spawners are an example of Flood adaptation, a war-form created specifically to counter the defensive measures of the Ark and Banished.

Highly mobile and capable of independent action, these creatures venture out from High Charity to spread the Flood deep into nearby refugia. Most pockets of Flood infestation Spawners establish will be detected and quickly destroyed, but time and probability is on the parasite's side.

The Spawner lurks at the rear of Flood assaults, spawning waves of infection forms. Spawners must be quickly dealt with, or they will continue to create Flood attack forces just outside the range of base defenses.

Cocooned Bases

Fallen citadels.

The parasite does not build what it can instead repurpose. UNSC and Banished bases within High Charity's blightlands have been converted into hives of the Flood. They are a hideous sight that barely resemble the structures they once were. There are no survivors or salvage worth recovering in these hideous warrens. These facilities' defenses are also not under Flood control.

Cocooned Bases are a major threat and priority target, but are surrounded by blightland and located deep in Flood territory. They continually spawn Flood units until eliminated, and even when the base is destroyed there are hordes of twisted creatures who will pour out the wreckage. Regardless of the risks, the only way to deal with Flood-infested bases is to burn them to the ground, preferably from orbit. The base slot of the Cocooned Base is freed when the Flood buildings are razed.