Cragmites are a militaristic species from the Polaris Galaxy that feature is the main antagonistic body in Tools of Destruction. They were once a tyrannical race that formed the Great Cragmite Empire, and who were eventually defeated by the lombaxes during the Great War, where it was said that the "Lombax Secret" was used to vaporize them and destroy the race. One survivor, Percival Tachyon, formed an army of drophyds and conquered the galaxy in the attempt of returning his race.
The cragmites are insect/reptile-like species with powerful weaponry. Adult cragmites come in varying shapes and sizes, and are mostly slow and rarely move by walking, but rather by atomizing themselves and transporting to another location similarly to short range warping. Cragmites who die split into three baby cragpoles, which lack arms and are incapbale of warping but can move quickly, split stomach acid and bite enemies.
The cragmites formed the Great Cragmite Empire, and created a large, unstoppable army whose empire stretched from the Nundac Asteroid Ring to Praxus XII. They committed genocide on dozens of sentient species, and devastated hundreds more (such as the ghost-like Loki, whose homeworld of Toranux was destroyed by a Cragmite Warrior named Bagogg who returned after escaping the planet to destroy it). The ever-growing number of conquered worlds were depleted of natural resources by the cragmites before they moved onto other worlds. The Empire consisted primarily of cragmites, though it had some allies including Zorthan, who killed at least one hundred lombaxes during the war.
The lombaxes deemed the Great Cragmite Empire's rule over their galaxy unacceptable and took leadership role of the resistance against them, being the only independent force capable of challenging them due to their engineering prowess. The two races became eternal nemeses and fought long periods of time during the Great War.
Eventually, eight of the most brilliant minds in lombax history, in the Center for Advanced Lombax Research, created the Dimensionator, which could be used to transport the entire cragmite race to another dimension. This machine was used to send the entire race to dimension X2-49, where they were located in a dying star approximately 8.2 million kilocubits from any life form. This ended the cragmite rule over Polaris and effectively won the war for the lombaxes.
|“||Greetings, inferior beings of Polaris. Does your life lack a sense of purpose? Do you constantly worry about finding steady income? Do you like killing stuff? Then join the Imperial Army and aid me in my humble quest for galactic domination. Here you'll travel to new places, meet interesting people, and execute them in the name of… me.||”|
— Percival Tachyon's military infomercial., ToD
During the Great War, a lone cragmite egg was frozen on the Kreeli Comet. The lombaxes found the egg while mining trillium, and took pity on this cragmite and raised him as their own. The cragmite grew up to by Percival Tachyon. Tachyon grew up happily with the lombaxes, until he learned of his true origins and developed a deep hatred for them.
Tachyon became a brilliant inventor, in secret creating an army of space pirates to scour the galaxy and collect machinery for him, and with the lombaxes, proposing new technologies for weapons (which served the blueprints for his own Imperial Army of drophyds). Many lombaxes, including Kaden, were suspicious at first, though General Alister Azimuth of the Lombax Praetorian Guard was convinced this was the right thing to do as the Polaris Galaxy was still a dangerous place. He therefore granted Tachyon access to all lombax technology, unwittingly granting Tachyon the tools he needed to create his new empire.
With all he had needed, Tachyon banished his space pirates to Praxus Seven and recruited the drophyd species on planet Zaurik, presenting them with a fortune in Raritanium and equipping them with the advanced battle suits he had created using lombax technology, to recruit them to his cause. Tachyon turned his new army on the lombaxes and laid waste to Fastoon, plunging the lombax city in ruin. This forced the lombaxes to flee and take refuge in the Court of Azimuth, where they used the Dimensionator to flee to the lombax dimension, banishing Alister Azimuth and leaving Kaden and his son Ratchet behind to watch over and hide the Dimensionator. Tachyon conquered much of the Polaris Galaxy, and sought to find the Dimensionator to restore his race. Tachyon eventually killed Kaden, but the Dimensionator was still hidden.
Tools of Destruction
Having conquered much of Polaris, Tachyon then hunted out the remaining lombaxes. Angela Cross fled the dimension with Max Apogee, leaving Tachyon to hunt for Kaden's son, Ratchet, in the Solana Galaxy. This prompted Tachyon to send a fleet to planet Kerwan and lay waste to the city of Metropolis until Ratchet was surrendered to him. Captain Qwark attempted to fight off the drophyd army, but was instead captured by Tachyon and swore allegiance to become his "confidant". Ratchet and Clank, meanwhile, confronted Tachyon and stole his ship, taking them to the Polaris Galaxy.
In the Polaris Galaxy, Ratchet managed to acquire the Dimensionator before Tachyon found it, only to have it taken by Qwark who wished to claim credit for destroying it. Qwark accidentally took off to the cragmite homeworld of Reepor, where Tachyon captured him and then used the Dimensionator to bring back enough cragmites for an entire armada. The cragmites joined forces with Tachyon's drophyds, and invaded Meridian City on planet Igliak, the Polaris Galaxy capital (and the symbol of refuge for all of free Polaris not yet conquered by Tachyon). Ratchet and Clank attempted to repel back the invasion, and were successful in rescuing Qwark, but could not prevent the invasion wholesale.
Finally, Tachyon laid waste to Fastoon once again, knowing that Ratchet would eagerly follow him. After fighting through a large force of drophyds and cragmites, Ratchet confronted Tachyon in the Court of Azimuth, and trapped Tachyon away in alternate dimension A2-66 before retrieving the Dimensionator. With Tachyon gone, his empire was defeated and his grip on Polaris ended, and the remaining undefeated cragmites were then banished.
Cragmites are reptillian insect-like creatures with six legs and two arms in adult form, and having grey/purple-ish skin. They have long mouths with sharp carnivorous teeth, and can spit poisonous stomach acid. They reproduce by laying eggs, and also by splitting into three baby cragpoles when an adult cragmite dies.
The cragmites grew up on planet Reepor, which is a toxic planet of green sludge after the Great War. When banished with the Dimensionator, they were trapped in dimension X2-49, 8.2 million kilocubits from the nearest life form near a dying star, where they, according to the IRIS supercomputer, remained "angry and bored".
The cragmites are a militaristic and vengeful race of conquerors, which are known to destroy all species that interfere with them. However, they are not beyond making allies when beneficial to them, and even after restoring the cragmites, the drophyds remained allied with them. When conquering planets, they install themselves as tyrannical and authoritarian rulers, watching gladiator combat as a past time, seen in the Imperial Fight Festival.
Adult cragmites are capable of warping short distances by atomizing themselves and transporting to another location, which compensates for their slow walking. They are also intelligent inventors of powerful weaponry, as Tachyon alone was able to propose weapons light years beyond what the lombaxes were using (despite the lombaxes possessing the galaxy's most advanced technology).
The cragmites formed entire armadas made of several warships and warriors. They were also known to possess a potent weapon refereed to as a Class Three Planet Smasher, which was used by Bagogg to destroy Planet Toranux.
Under Tachyon, the cragmites employed his own Imperial Army, consisting of drophyds, with Imperial Cruisers as warships and Drophyd Transport Ships to move drophyds around. The drophyds use mechanical devices, including Drophyd Sentries, Drophyd Troopers, Drophyd Defenders, Drophyd Gunships, Drophyd Cyclocannons and the ultra advanced Enforcer models. The army also recruited others to join the cause to hunt for the Lombax Secret. This army was later bolstered by an armada of cragmites brought in through the Dimensionator.
Cragmites all began as cragpoles, before growing into Cragmite Hunters, and finally into Cragmite Warriors. However, Emperor Tachyon, while an adult cragmite, is far shorter than the others and has a different form, suggesting that many cragmites of other types exist which are not seen.
|Cragpole||Reepor, Igliak, Fastoon||Baby cragmites which cannot warp, but instead spit stomach acid and bite to defend themselves, also spawn in groups of three when adult cragmite dies|
|Cragmite Hunter||Reepor, Igliak, Fastoon||Adult cragmites, warp, fire quick round of long range energy blasts|
|Cragmite Warrior||Reepor, Igliak, Fastoon||Adult cragmites, warp, fire three green energy blasts, swipe in close combat|
Behind the scenes
In a Cragmite story called "Bagogg and the Loki", a Cragmite warrior named Bagogg crashed landed on planet Toranaux and hid there for years while fighting off spirit creatures called the Loki. Once he managed to escape back to Reepor, he destroyed the planet with a class three planet smasher, blasting the planet to pieces. This story was mentioned by Qwark in Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One.
A Cragmite appears as an available skin in Tools of Destruction.
When designing the cragmites, Insomniac explored the shapes of several insects and crustaceans to give them a creepy design.