Since I'm getting plenty of great for my other question "How can a nine tailed fox catch its prey? Thought I might try to get ideas for both fox-fire and illusions.

So far I've thought of bioluminescent fungi which I called "fox shrooms" which are type of agaric fungus that glows a bluish-green in the darkness.

Here both the fox and the fungus share a symbiotic relationship which benefits both species, where the fungus lives on the dirt and decomposing matter often caked in the fox's dreads and as a bonus, the fox helps disperse the spores.

But how can the spores help create fox-fire?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I'm confused as to what the question is here? You've put forth a couple ideas of your own, but there's a lack of inquiry which is going to make it difficult for the rest of us to answer. $\endgroup$
    – Pleiades
    Oct 25, 2016 at 12:27
  • $\begingroup$ Sorry, these are just ideas I've came up $\endgroup$ Oct 25, 2016 at 12:43
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Would it be possible for you to reword your question to better define what you want to ask? $\endgroup$
    – Pleiades
    Oct 25, 2016 at 12:54
  • $\begingroup$ The Worldbuilding SE format is that of question and answer. Typically, users come here with a problem they're having, ask a question, and then the community helps to answer that question. As stated in the Help Center: "Be specific; If you ask a vague question, you’ll get a vague answer. But if you give us details and context, we can provide a useful answer." You haven't asked a question at all, so it's likely your question will be closed. If you can reframe what your asking to be a clear, specific question, we can provide you an answer. $\endgroup$
    – Azuaron
    Oct 25, 2016 at 13:04
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ You should clarify what fox-fire is in your question. I'm sure I'm not the only one with no clue as to what you're trying to achieve. $\endgroup$
    – Frostfyre
    Oct 25, 2016 at 13:56

1 Answer 1


The spores are going to need four properties:

  1. Bioluminescence (check)
  2. Highly reflective
  3. Gliding ability
  4. Attraction to the swarm

Highly reflective

In addition to providing their own light, to get a flickery, fire-looking effect you want them to also be reflecting the light of the other spores. Instead of being a simple static glow, having each spore sport a number of shifting reflective planes will give you a much closer approximation to a floating ball of flickering flame.

Gliding ability

The spores are going to be too small and mechanically simple to properly fly. But! Their light weight and some well designed fixed wings could give them the ability to glide for quite some time. This will help keep them up in the air as a "will-o'-wisp".

Attraction to the swarm

A quickly dispersed cloud of spores is, frankly, useless. Like throwing shiny dust in a high wind. We want a coherent mass. And that's why we need an attractive force. Not too attractive, or we'll just have a big ball of spores that falls directly to the ground. Which means we have to sporadically generate static electricity. The random static pulses will pull the swarm together briefly, then it will all begin to drift apart again. This will repeat as the swarm slowly drifts to the ground. The fox fire will collapse and become a bright point, then disperse and become a faint misty glow.

  • $\begingroup$ @AlexanderR.Hunt As long as by "illusions" you mean "hallucinations", then, sure, many mushrooms are known for their hallucinogenic properties. As far as infection, once again, sure. Penicillin is also cultivated from fungus. It wouldn't be unreasonable to have the fungus police the microbial community that it's a part of. $\endgroup$
    – Azuaron
    Oct 26, 2016 at 13:26

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .