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Questions tagged [creature-design]

For questions regarding the viability of a life-form design. These questions should focus on biologically plausible creatures.

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4answers
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Are there any big cats that can survive in a primarily desert area?

I have two large continents on an earth like world. I would like for the dominate predator on the more desert continent to be a large cat. I have found the leopards and jaguars of Egypt, but am ...
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How to justify having overly large irises?

In many famous alien species you see that the iris is so large that it almost appears that it replaces the sclera. What evolutionary history would support the irises growing to that size. The only ...
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Making skeletons a challenging fight

In my world, skeletons are a thing. They're raised from existing corpses under the control of their "master". Obviously, there's magic involved. But I don't want magic to be part of the whole process....
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Suggested steps for creating a new race?

For one of the novels I am writing, I want to create a race based off of the Chinese Zodiac. However, I don't know exactly where to start with creating said race, so I was curious to see if there was ...
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Science behind a naturally invisible creature

Suppose a planet developed a peculiar form of life that was naturally invisible, but only within a 15-ft. (4.57 m) radius, by bending or refracting the majority of light around its body due to its ...
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Biological ''Helmet''

What I'm thinking about is simply an animal,any with a protective bony-like shell covering its eyes. The shell must be openable for clear vision but when closed the animal still has the ability to ...
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movement of space animals

Animals on planets are so 20th century - let's herd us some space animals! In this story I have the need to move a herd of pesky space animals. They like Suns for their juicy solar energy and ...
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830 views

Evolution of ophidian sapience and caudal tool use

What natural environmental pressures or opportunities might drive an alien ophidian species to evolve sapience and caudal tool use? Conditions The species should be lacking limbs prior to the ...
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Evolution of giant floating mammals

Whales are majestic creatures of the sea, as they glide more gracefully through the water than their size should seemingly allow. What kind of evolutionary path would it take for whales to glide ...
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Fire is gravity for fire Elemental

What would it look like for elementals (type of creature based on its base element) if the base element acted as its gravity? How would they move about? How would their basic actions look compared to ...
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Anatomically Correct Boar Troll

I request some help with the design of one particular denizen of my fantasy world, tentatively named Boar Troll. It needs to be an ungulate or closely related creature with emerging sentience, and ...
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How would an ocean of jello evolve

I watched a youtube video on the Darwin IV probe mission to this planet has lower mass than the earth, about the size of Mars, and has a single sea. According to the movie, the microbes that resided ...
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How to kill an energy being?

An energy being or astral being is a theoretical life form that is composed of energy rather than matter. We can kill a person by damaging his/her body physically. How about killing an energy being? ...
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What would a biological creature need in order to see into the future?

Inspired by the Paycheck and Minority Report movies. So far as I can tell, physical time travel is impossible for humans, and so I searched to see the future possible scientific or theoretical ...
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How to make a viable flying mount?

In the real world, humans have tamed horses and use them as mounts. Horses have very specific characteristics that make them a viable mount, such as size, back-strength, stamina, diet, behavior, etc. ...
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Metal-Feathered Macaw Viability Part 1: How Can It Fly?

More posts from this thread will be linked here: Metal-Feathered Macaw Viability Part 2: Best Wing Shape? Info I'm designing a macaw that has metal feathers, claws, and a metal beak--to be ...
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Could a predatory semi-sentient species survive, in the long run, without the emotion of fear?

I was thinking of an idea for an alien species in a hard sci-fi universe, and I wondered if a species, with the same amount of emotions as bottlenose dolphins (Except for fear), survive as a species. ...
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How does a mimic move?

Alright, so take your basic (not DnD or any other universe specific) mimic: an unassuming treasure chest that turns out to secretly be a monster as soon as you open it. This particular creature is one ...
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Genetic structure of a trait with six discrete phenotypes

In my world magic is conferred genetically. Their are five "types" of magic, which never mix. You either have one type, or you have another (or none at all, the sixth option), you never have a mix of ...
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Designing a creature with jaws to crush iron bones

In my most recent question, I asked for a material other than calcium and collagen that could form skeletons in alien creatures. My favourite answer was bio-steel; "Iron with a small percentage of ...
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7answers
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Is it possible to ride a carnivore species?

Humans have been domesticating carnivores for over 10 000 years. And there are certainly carnivores big enough to ride. The former is the biggest feline ever to exist. They certainly can carry a human ...
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What is a Giant's Diet?

If an average human is 5'10" (1.8m), when scaled to be roughly 50 ft (15 m) how much food would it need to remain healthy? Let's also assume there are three types of this giant; carnivorous, ...
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Anatomically Correct Carnivorous Blankets

There is a website called the SCP Foundation which features a variety of creatures, objects and phenomena that border on the horrifying to the just plain weird. This one straddles the boundary between ...
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Humanoid Race with Surpressed Myostatin Gene - Appearance?

I'm thinking about using this as a sort of meta explanation for how Orcs (and possibly other things as well) are different than humans (in muscularity), but I'm not entirely sure what the result of ...
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What is the most plausible ancestor for tool-using, sentient, bipedal reptilians?

A classical trope of fantasy is lizardfolk, or a similar species by another name (see for instance the Argonians of Elder Scrolls fame). In general, though, we're dealing with: Bipedal, often ...
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Magivore - designing a magic 'eater'

Yes, magic means I can say 'make it so' and it is. But I see too many options and not sure which ones would make more sense. I'm picking one idea that I've never seen in a book. So a Magivore is ...
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How to make my Beast-Of-Burden work?

Disclaimer: This question is the first of a new series of questions of mine about introducing hexapedae to the fauna of my conworld. There are/will be other questions addressing i.a.: ecosystems, ...
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Anthropomorphic Animal Head Support

So I have struck another snag in my draft involving my character's biology. It is an anthropomorphic animal related to the pantherinae subfamily. So far, its physical structure resembles that of a ...
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You eat this plant, it eats you right back. Can it work?

Based on an answer of mine from a few months ago, I've been inspired to adapt the concept to my own Life Ball. Fair warning- this question and some of its links are not for the squeamish. May ...
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Why would a predatory creature capable of using telekinesis still hunt with tooth and claw?

Imagine a creature capable of telekinesis. This creature is also armed with sharp teeth and claws for hunting and eating prey. Given using telekinesis to move an object is about as energy-consuming as ...
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Tactical Cooling of a Predator

In a world inhabited by small grassland herbivores, night-time is a very scary time indeed. With no moon or other substantial light-source to illuminate the plains, they are in great danger of ...
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The Marksman Dragon

One of the deadliest species of dragon is the dreaded Marksman Dragon. This beast has immense physical power and a bad temper, but its most potent weapon is its breath. The Marksman Dragon can shoot ...
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Can the fleshmoles breathe?

The bonegrass fields are full of other life, despite their dangers. Lots of insects, some birds, and even a handful of reptiles have adapted to the paralytic nature of the air in order to reap the ...
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Anatomically Correct Siren?

I am interested in creating a reality based version of a creature from Greek mythology called a Siren. Sirens were believed to combine women and birds in various ways. In early Greek art, Sirens ...
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Does a mind-reading thought-implanting beast have to be conscious?

The Mind-Wolf is one of the more dangerous foes in my world. It can read minds, it can plant thoughts in the unwary, slowly warping senses until pushing the victim into the equivalent of a full blown ...
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Bound for life humanoids

I'm creating a species of humanoid creatures that live their entire life in couples. From birth to death, they are bound emotionally, they work together as if they were only one individual but they ...
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Plant based lifeforms: brain equivalent?

In lots of science fiction works that visit other planets we are often introduced to intelligent plant based lifeforms, be they humanoid looking or potted plant looking. I'm curious as to what part ...
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810 views

Most effective way to camouflage a visible physical connection on a creature that uses part of its body as a lure?

I have toyed with the idea with a certain creature in my head for quite some time, and with the creature design challenge, I thought this would be a great time to ask about it here. The basics of the ...
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Can humanoids be reborn from a tree?

Details: A culture of dryads has a strange death tradition. When a dryad dies there's usually a medic, or better say a "shaman" that rips a strange looking organ or gland off their head. The gland, ...
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Is it possible to detect a flying creature hiding inside a cloud with our current technology?

In my story, flying creatures rule the sky. These creatures are usually tiny like an eagle or a vulture compared to huge (cumulus/cumulonimbus) clouds and these creatures always hunt and hide as ...
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Anatomically Correct Pegasus

This is part of the Anatomically Correct Series. I've been wondering how an anatomically correct pegasus could evolve. Pegasus characteristics They are pretty obvious, but just in case: Horse size ...
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What else is involved in “silicon based” life?

Silicon is often brought up in science fiction as being very similar to carbon, just below it on the periodic table. The silicon-based "organic" molecules are more tightly bound and thus would find a ...
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Is it possible for an organism to evolve to generate its own nuclear power?

Is it possible for an organism to evolve to biologically generate its own nuclear power? If so, how would this evolution occur?
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Would a species evolved for very high environmental pressure necessarily die in lower pressures?

I'm aware that deep sea fish don't actually "explode" when brought to the surface but any air sacs in their bodies would expand and cause them possibly fatal damage. However, what other physiological ...
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How to let a Whale urh… fly? [duplicate]

I have read about flying sharks that hunt birds and great monstrous flying whales, so I would like to know how a whale could conceivably start 'flying' in real life. I'm gonna just set Blue Whales as ...
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How to justify digging claws and opposable thumbs in the same being

The fantasy creature I am imagining (planning a short story or two around) satisfies the following analogy: Human is to Chimpanzee as "This Thing" is to Badger. That is, the creature has a clear ...
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Do mermaids lay eggs underwater or give birth to live young?

Let's pretend these magnificent and beautiful creatures are able to reproduce asexually so we can forget about their mating habits or their partners. I have yet to witness any hard shell eggs laid ...
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Would there be any major disadvantages for a species to have six legs instead of four?

I want a world in which animals roam the wilderness on four legs, yet at least some of them are able to do the kind of carrying and fine handling of objects done by humans. The planet is superficially ...
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Creature with a non-centralized brain

I've always found animal intelligence to be fascinating, particularly that of the cephalopods, some of which show some pretty remarkable talents for tool usage, mimicry, and pattern recognition. ...
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How did the Armatae Bestia evolve studded plates?

Meet the following specimen of Armatae Bestia. I'd describe it, but a picture is worth a thousand words, so I'll just put one here instead (Feel free to drag it into browser window to get a much ...