SWARM HOST (STARCRAFT)
StarCraft: Wings of Liberty
Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm
Starcraft II: Legacy of the Void
The swarm host (otherwise known as the “egg monster” by terrans) is a zerg strain in StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm.
Generated by the infestation pit, the swarm host burrows into the ground in order to provide a seemingly endless supply of locusts. A single swarm host is capable of overwhelming an entire army. The large, mushroom-shaped structure on the swarm host’s back is a breeding ground that weaponizes the millions of diminute larvae inhabiting the creature’s acidic bloodstream. Through a simple system of membranes for matter exchange, glands that pump the offspring full of hormones to hyper-accelerate growth, and ducts for efficient transportation to the bubbling pockets on the surface of the incubator, the swarm host births deadly, short-lived locusts to destroy threats to the Swarm. The larvae also feed on damaged tissue, sealing wounds, and destroying anything foreign that enters their domain. When the creature is threatened or engaged in combat, a subtle chemical reaction signals the larva to head for the incubator, where they are evolved into living weapons.
The swarm host is often used in defensive maneuvers. Its legs boast powerful muscles that allow them to vibrate at hypersonic speeds, not unlike the teeth of the nydus worm. Despite that, the creature couldn´t burrow fast enough to adapt to shifting battlefield conditions. To correct this, a set of fragile (albeit regenerating) capillaries was put into place. Now, when the swarm host digs, the capillaries break and the creature’s acid blood softens the soil, allowing it to go underground in seconds. Flexible osseous structures of varying thickness slide and lock into position when the swarm host prepares to strike. Bearing a resemblance to siege tank hydraulics, this specialized skeletal system allows the swarm host to maintain position and balance when spewing locusts or when under heavy fire. The swarm host lacks mobility however, which leaves it vulnerable to quicker enemies with area damage like the hellion.
The swarm hosts of the Leviathan Brood are uniquely specialized for amphibious assault and bear many genetic advantages that allow them to quickly move through the oceans and assail their prey.
Projenitors of the swarm hosts, named primal hosts, were first encountered by the Swarm utilized by the primal zerg on Zerus, used against Kerrigan’s forces by the pack leader Brakk. Swarm host strains were incorporated into Kerrigan’s Swarm soon afterwards by Abathur, adapted through primal essence. The essences of the primal host were later adapted in to create the swarm host.
Reports within the Terran Dominion have suggested that swarm hosts have developed the ability to spawn locusts without being burrowed.
As primal zerg fought alongside the Zerg Swarm, many swarm hosts strains began to merge with their primal host projenitors, creating strains with many similar traits between the two.
During the End War, a number of swarm hosts came under Amon’s control, and were inducted into his brood. They were destroyed by Tal’darim Highlord Alarak and Nerazim Matriarch Vorazun on Aiur.