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How long is the life of rust monsters?

How long will a rust monster grow up from a child in the barrel?

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    \$\begingroup\$ RE: "How long will a rust monster grow up from a child in the barrel?" I don't know what this means. Could the question clarify? It sounds like either something's been lost in translation or autocorrect changed the intent. \$\endgroup\$ Oct 18, 2018 at 1:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ You didn't play in barrels when you were a kid? I guess it's all Minecraft and Fortnite now. \$\endgroup\$ Oct 18, 2018 at 3:01
  • \$\begingroup\$ I got my first computer at age 22 and I have no idea what the barrel line means in this context. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ling
    Oct 18, 2018 at 6:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ I suspect it's a regional thing. I'm coming up on 50 faster than I'd like, and this is the first time I've ever heard of a game called "in barrels" or the phrase "child in the barrel". \$\endgroup\$ Oct 18, 2018 at 10:01

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According to the Ecology of the Rust Monster feature from Dragon Magazine #346, it takes about two years for a newly hatched rust monster to grow to its adult size:

After approximately a month the eggs hatch, each spilling out a tiny larval rust monster about the length of a man's forearm. These young have no appendages and look like nothing more than bloated, brownish maggots with moist antennae approximately a foot long. These antennae possess the same corrosive effects as an adult rust monster's, and over the next two years grow in size, along with legs, a bony tail, and a hardened carapace.

The article doesn't specify exactly how long a rust monster can live after reaching adulthood, but it's at least "decades." The feature details a particularly old, large, and powerful rust monster called o-Akasabi-sama, whose description includes the following:

Over the decades this monstrosity has destroyed the weapons and holy katanas of numerous master swordsmen...

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  • \$\begingroup\$ That last bit sounds like an in-joke, possibly from an anime or manga. \$\endgroup\$ Oct 18, 2018 at 3:47

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