Starcraft Brood War
Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty
Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm
Starcraft II: Legacy of the Void
Ultralisks are the most powerful ground strain the Swarm possesses and their DNA is the “final viable code” utilized by larvae. Living battering rams, ultralisks serve as the backbone of the Swarm, and serve as its siegebreaker.
Ultralisks evolved from the docile brontolith; a creature that the ultralisk now bears little resemblance to. The brontoliths’ genetic code was dissected, rebuilt and repurposed multiple times. Each phase of the process served to eliminate less desirable traits, as well as augment the creature’s ability to withstand severe punishment. This included the creature’s superb immune system. As a finishing touch to the ultralisk, the Swarm added the gene that would replace the creature’s organs.
When terrans first encountered ultralisks on the battlefield, they observed that the creatures seemed to suffer balance issues, and were easily toppled by artillery fire or loss of limbs. By the Second Great War, “unstoppable” ultralisks had been observed. The additions to their internal structure were revealed, but the data offered very little in the way of finding a counter to the creature. Second Great War ultralisks were also noted to have a greater amount of Kaiser blades, as well as a higher amount of carapace armor.
Ultralisks have been submitted to countless genetic experiments. Ultralisks have been studied by terrans to a significant extent, Avernus Station and the Castanar space platform serving as examples. During the final stages of the Second Great War, Sarah Kerrigan was able to reconstitute the Ultralisk strain from test subjects at the Skygeirr Platform laboratory. Research stations in Korhal allowed Kerrigan to also assimilate the Noxious strain of ultralisk, as well as reconstitute the Torrasque strain.
Ultralisks attack using large, bone-like scythes which protrude from their backs. Known as “kaiser blades”, these scythes are nearly indestructible. Possessing monomolecular edges, these scythes are able to tear through most substances with ease. The density, bevel, and edges of these organic weapons are honed at the genetic level. By 2500 at least some ultralisks sported four kaiser blades as opposed to the usual two. By the Second Great War, four blades were the standard.
The ultralisk’s size in of itself is also a weapon—they can charge with enough ferocity to even destroy protoss force fields.
Ultralisks possess an exceptionally thick carapace. Dominion scientists suspect that the larva’s highly resistant carapace served as a template for enhancements to the creature. Preliminary tests on the carapace itself proved that the diamond-shaped, chitinous scales of the creature were combined with foreign compounds and organic tissue multiple times, resulting in very light plates with an unmatched level of hardness. A gene also exists within the ultralisk’s genetic code that exists with the sole purpose of growing heavily armored copies of the beast’s primary organs in random locations of its body. The brontolith’s immune system was improved on for the ultralisk, allowing it to thrive in the most toxic and inhospitable environments the galaxy has to offer.
By the Brood War, prolonged exposure to vespene gas had resulted in an enhancement to the ultralisks’ physical capabilities, among which was the evolution of a more hardened exoskeletal shell and the ability to carry out anabolic synthesis, alterations being made to the glands that produce endorphins and adrenal fluids. By the Second Great War, the strain had received substantial additions to its internal structure—a complex sensory system, an auxiliary nervous system, and specialized muscle fibers that expand or contract in reaction to stimuli. Through this, an ultralisk can maintain speed even with its hind legs severed.
During the Second Great War, some ultralisks were combined with the essenceof Zerus’s primal zerg, making them truly unstoppable killing machines.
Ultralisks birthed by the Leviathan Brood are terrifying vistages of spines and blades, monsters worthy of legend.