The Metal Heads, originally known as the Hora-Quan, are an ancient race of evil creatures that are the major antagonists in the Jak and Daxter series.
Almost nothing has been revealed about the Metal Heads' origins. During Jak II, it was revealed that the real name of this species was the Hora-Quan (they are never referred to as this again), and they waged a massive war with the Precursors. They eventually won the war, presumably due to numbers, and spread across the universe. Jak implied they apparently had an alliance with the Dark Makers and were betrayed, though it is never made clear how Jak came across this information (it is possible that he gained the information when he was connected to the Dark Ship), as it is also never spoken of again. Eventually, they spread across the universe and destroyed most of the Precursor civilization. After Jak, Daxter, Keira, and Samos opened the Rift Gate, they attacked the planet. They swarmed across the planet, destroying most of the cities on it. Aeropa, the Far Drop, Haven, Spargus, and Kras City are the only known surviving cities.
Haven City has been at war with the Metal Heads since before the time of the games chronologically. Mar constructed Haven City with a large energy shield for the purpose of protecting the people and precursor artifacts from the Metal Heads. The Metal Heads attempted to attack the city many times, but were repelled by the shield wall. Eventually the threat became too great, and Mar built a weapon powered by the Precursor Stone to break open the Metal Head Nest, but died before he could use it. Haven citizens eventually formed a fighting force, possibly a predecessor to the Krimzon Guard, to fight the creatures. Partway through the conflict, Damas came to the throne of Haven City, but was betrayed by Baron Praxis. Praxis's campaign was more destructive for both Haven City, using propaganda and fear of the Metal Heads to keep the populace under his rule, using prisoners for experimental weapons, and devoting massive resources to his war machine. He once led a failed attack on the main Metal Head Nest, costing him his right eye. Remains of tanks used in the battle can be seen littered around the nest. The Metal Heads launched a more successful counter-attack, creating the ruins of Dead Town.
In Daxter, the Metal Heads attempt to sabotage Haven City using small, insectoid versions of themselves referred to as "Metal Bugs". The bugs were led by Kaeden, Kor's second in command. Daxter fought and defeated Kaeden, ending the Metal Bug threat.
In Jak II, the Metal Heads' debut appearance, the siege of Haven City was at its height, with Metal Head armies inhabiting every area around and below Haven City. Eventually, Metal Kor, disguised as an old man, sabotaged the shield wall and allows his army into the city. The Krimzon Guard (who for some reason are not using grenade launchers, hoverbikes, blast bots, electrified spider bots, Hellcats, tanks, mines, auto turrets, or any other useful weaponry) tried to fight the invaders. With the bulk metal heads distracted searching for the Precursor Stone in Haven City, Jak attacked the nest and killed Metal Kor, saving the city.
The surviving Metal Heads regrouped by Jak 3, though they had been replaced as the primary antagonists. They were framed by Count Veger for the destruction of the Palace, but used the attack to take control of Haven City's west side, thereby possessing the most territory of any faction. They constructed their own small city with a massive tower as a nest, and worked with the KG Death Bots to destroy the Freedom League. Their tower was eventually destroyed by Jak, but they were in not completely defeated.
By Jak X, they were apparently driven out of Haven City, and were used as prey in a combat racing event. However, they are never identified as "Metal Heads". They are probably regrouping after heavy Jak-related casualties.
Metal Heads have diverse physiology that fits any combat situation, ranging from forms similar to a squid to massive Tyrannosaurs with mortar launchers on their back. Their biology is mainly a combination of reptilian and insectoid characteristics. The largest seen Metal Head was a 60-foot centipede.
With the exception of Metal Kor, their leader, and his second in command, Kaeden, no Metal Head has displayed the ability to speak or even show some sign of real intelligence. However, during Jak 3, the Metal Heads regrouped under new commanders, so some others may possess human-level intelligence (this may have been a misunderstanding of Erol's activities). They may have a "Hive Mind", which allows the new leaders to control them. Metal Heads have never attacked each other, so they are not completely primal.
The only definite traits of a Metal Head are 2 or 4 glowing yellow eyes and a "skull gem" in their forehead or, rarely, their chest.
Metal heads reproduce by laying eggs, which are gray in color with a large yellow spot in their center, which presumably develops into a skull gem. The eggs possess webbing to cling to the walls of the Metal Head nest, and will grow on stalks when placed in Dark Eco to feed on.
The Metal Heads seem to have no written language but have been seen in game understanding human speech. It is assumed that they can understand human speech but almost all breeds lack vocal capabilities of such. The only two Metal Heads that have ever been heard speaking English are Metal Kor and Kaeden. Metal Heads are however, sent into battle with leaders and probably communicate in a series of shrieks and screams. Higher ranking Metal Heads (such as Metal-Saur) often carry hologram radio devices which they use to report back to the nest.
Powers and Abilities
The Metal Heads are equipped with numerous weapons and devices easily accommodated by their diverse physiology. These abilities range from simple beam weapons to jets and cloaking devices. Metal Head weapons are powered by various eco like most weapons in their universe, mainly Dark Eco. Whether they are hatched from their eggs with these attachments or if they are added later has not been revealed.
Metal Heads also have more conventional weapons, such as stingers, spikes, horns, claws, or simply their teeth. Their bodies are fused with armor (hence their name), and many have wings that allow for flight.
Metal Kor demonstrated powers no other Metal Head has been remotely capable of, such as speech, transformation and Dark Eco shock waves.
Little is known about Metal Head social structure. They have never been seen attacking each other, and don't seem to differentiate one member of their species from another.
Metal Heads also seem to show little to no interest in other indigenous fauna if they are around and often seen teaming on one who ventures out of the city's walls. Whether the Metal Heads don't see them as a threat or not is unknown.
The Metal Heads are united under one leader, Metal Kor, who also apparently has lieutenants such as Kaeden. After Kor was killed, the Metal Heads temporarily fell into chaos, but regrouped under their strongest members.
The Metal Heads have no apparent language of their own, spoken or written. The different forms have various growls and shrieks, but they seem to be battle cries and have not been used for real communication.
It is a common theory that the Metal Heads have some form of hive mind, or at least telepathic communication. This often serves as a purpose for their strange skull gems.
Metal Heads seem to adapt to any environment, except for sea dwelling Metal Heads of course. Although they adapt to any environment as mentioned above, the large Metal Heads most likely prefer large areas like the Wasteland or the Nest.
They are seen almost everywhere, in forests, mining facilities, plains, inside volcanoes, deserts, sewers, caves, ruins, and ruined cities. But there is a high probability that the Metal Heads on other planets experience very different kinds of environments, as well as weather.
Metal Heads, like other species, avoid hostile environments.