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A scorched is created when a human, or other creature, comes in contact with a scorchbeast, as the mutated fungal plague called the Scorched Plague that it carries mutates those infected. The skin goes through a rapid change from a charred black to blood red lesions as if they have been flayed alive. Complete loss of hair and cataracts of the eyes also occurs and green Ultracite crystals begin to protrude randomly from the skin. As well as affecting the appearance, those infected also succumb to complete degeneration of mental faculties. The infection of the scorched plague essentially creates a hive mind that connects all scorched to the Scorchbeast queen. The Queen can then command these scorched at will through thought.
The only instincts left for those infected are violent aggression towards everything but other scorched. However, when not acting violently or being directly controlled, a scorched will wander until it sticks in place. The scorched will stay in any position they are stuck in until they petrify from the inside out leaving only a radioactive, petrified corpse. This means that all scorched have a set lifespan until they inevitably succumb to their disease. The petrification process can take longer depending on the activity around any given area, as any disruption to a scorched while going through petrification will awaken them back to their wandering state. Even in death though, a scorched's petrified corpse is a strong source of radiation to any unwise enough to disturb it.
The scorched fill the role of raiders in Appalachia and represent a threat ranging from nuisance to severe, depending on which area of the world they're encountered in. The top level ones in the Cranberry Bog can be quite a challenge, especially when encountered in numbers at eg. the glassed cavern. They work well together and are usually a well-rounded combat unit. Scorched have a very varied appearance, usually tied to the area they are in, and can resemble any of the factions that were once populating Appalachia. Notably, their appearance is not tied to the danger they pose, so keeping tabs on the name is a rather good idea.
- Random melee or ranged weapons (usually not the ones they are carrying)
- Random packaged food
- Rad-X or RadAway (also diluted)
- Minor junk
- Fallout 76 loading screen hints: "The Scorched are human beings afflicted by a strange condition known as the Scorched Plague, and are now controlled by a violent hive mind. But what is the Plague's source? And can it be stopped?"
- Fallout 76 loading screen hints: "A Scorchbeast Queen and her army of mind-controlled minions are terrorizing the area. Stop them if you can!"