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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8
votes
1answer
125 views

Can a feathered wing be also compliant?

So, to quote pterosaur.net: Unlike the wings of birds, the wings of pterosaurs would have tended to change shape under aerodynamic load - something often referred to as 'passive cambering'. ...
3
votes
3answers
290 views

Bioluminescent microorganisms in everything

Is it possible for a bioluminescent organism to be so pervasive in an environment, that creatures who eat it (because it's in plants for example) also start to glow? It doesn't have to be a bright ...
6
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4answers
188 views

Anatomy of a chinese serpentine dragon?

In our world there are two species of dragon that took different evolutionary paths due to environmental pressures. The first of them, called smaugs, are as large as a quetzalcoatlus, with a wingspan ...
7
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4answers
253 views

The right size for dragons

Note: size here denotes the physical dimension(s) taken up by the creature in a natural, idling posture One of the many fantasy tropes that make me want to Fahrenheit 451 contemporary fantasy ...
9
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4answers
184 views

How would a quadruped walk with one limb longer than the rest?

I have a (digitigrade) quadrupedal alien creature with one of it's front limbs having a longer metatarsals, I'm trying to visualise how it would walk with this deformity for an animation. I'm having ...
4
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3answers
244 views

Is there a reason that females passing on more than 1/2 of their genetics to the child would be unlikely to evolve?

On the earth today most animals use a two sex mating system where male and female provide the same amount of genetics to the resulting offspring, despite the fact that in many cases the female ...
17
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13answers
7k views

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 ...
10
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2answers
164 views

What metals other than calcium can be used to create alien bones that won't also engender a human-toxic environment?

Edit: Okay, truth be known that this question was part of a set of 5 related questions that I was recommended to break up into individual posts (in their original form, the comments had no trouble ...
10
votes
2answers
658 views

Could a hexapodal bat actually fly?

Sequel to this question. Basically, I've been designing an intelligent avian race based on bats. After reading through some of the answers for the linked question, I've decided that these bats will ...
2
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6answers
509 views

Could a tetrapod evolve from a hexapod?

I'm thinking of an alien alien world that has a vast biosphere. Now the creatures of this planet have evolved to be hexapods though there are a few creatures that are tetrapods (only have four limbs). ...
22
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13answers
7k views

How could a self contained organic body propel itself in space

How could an organic, plant-like, intelligent organism move around space? Assuming that the body is inside a small meteoroid and that outside of the meteoroid is covered in tessellating leaves to ...
12
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4answers
2k views

Would the diet of a human have to adapt if he suddenly had a ~1 metre long foxtail?

If I genetically modified a human to have a foxtail of roughly 1 metre length through the use of handwaved genetical engineering - would this have an effect on his diet? Of course an additional ...
23
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10answers
2k views

Earth, Wind, and Water: Naturally Navigating All Three

There are few things cooler than a fish that can walk on land, or a rodent that can fly, but despite all the amazing adaptations evolution has seen fit to create upon this Earth, I cannot think of an ...
4
votes
1answer
218 views

what the aquatic creature need in order to live or survive in my acid water?

inspire by xenomorph acid blood from alien movies. so the water either rivers, lakes, and oceans in my world or some of the regions is highly acidic because some of the dirt or stone minerals content ...
8
votes
2answers
241 views

The Biology behind a slime that uses hydrofluoric acid to disable and digest prey.

So I've been working on a low magic world where magic is actually just another form of energy that can be actualized, similar to alchemy in Full Metal Alchemist. Although development has taken a ...
3
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3answers
331 views

Could a self-aware bacterial supercomputer start its own ecosystem?

I know A LOT of this gonna be a stretch and that I'm probably misunderstanding or exaggerating current real-life trends in science, but that's kind of why I'm asking the question. We know it's ...
11
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4answers
292 views

Anatomically Correct Slinky Worm

Despite the wide variety of movement strategies employed by Earthling animals, up to an including curling their bodies into circles and rolling, there is one mode of locomotion that is glaringly ...
53
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12answers
12k views

How can a fish that explodes by itself prosper enough to reproduce on a grand enough scale to persist as a species?

In the underwater survival game Subnautica there is a fish called Crashfish that, upon being too close to it, swims out of its plant to chase you and eventually explode. The explosion leaves no ...
16
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4answers
2k views

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 ...
1
vote
1answer
153 views

Can I use a living organism as exotic matter for interstellar travel?

Would it be possible to use a living organism as unobtainium for interstellar travel? Would it make any sense? The story I had in mind would use them as the main bad guys seeking vengeance on those ...
9
votes
4answers
527 views

Anatomically Correct Whomping Willow

The whomping willow is a fictional tree from the Harry Potter series of books. It is a magic willow that can move its branches to punch people who come close to it. Small animals such as cats and ...
5
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2answers
105 views

Novel Alien Bacteria / Fungus Causing Rapid Mutations

We've seen it throughout media before, a crazy mutation that creates zombies, rabid people, giant spiders, etc. I'm spot checking how crazy I can get with this short story I'm writing about a bacteria ...
8
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5answers
212 views

Why would a blind creature evolve display features?

I'm thinking of a predatory creature that lives deep inside large caves. Because this environment is so dark, the creature's eyes have disappeared through evolution since the creature relies on ...
10
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3answers
360 views

What would a Pegasus actually do with its legs while flying?

The question is just as simple as it sounds. Would it tuck them under like a bird? make running motions like it does when running on the ground? some other movement that actually aids in flight ...
5
votes
3answers
130 views

Size of a litter for a carnivore with a high rate of death

So, I'm designing an alien race/civilisation of carnivore. I was thinking of a very aggressive specie, who is both the alpha predator of his world and his own main cause of death. Basically, a lot ...
4
votes
1answer
211 views

Pros and cons of having digitigrade and plantigrade legs?

I have created a humanoid that can switch between digitigrade and plantigrade legs. It is able to do this via special bones in its legs that it can lock in place without hindering its movement but ...
13
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8answers
447 views

Plausibility Check: Kite Trees?

Disclaimer: This question, unlike my other tree related question, was brought about by pure whimsical daydreaming. I also threw the term "evolve" around a lot, I should clarify that what I asking is ...
21
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4answers
5k views

Would a carnivorous diet be able to support a giant worm?

In my fantasy world there is a large valley. At the northern end lies the 'endless desert' called the "Sea of Glass" due to its shimmering sands. Within these deserts live great wyrms that swim ...
3
votes
4answers
169 views

Why would a venomous snake squeeze its threat non-lethally?

This is a key part of my snakebite mystery story, which I am thinking of making part of a medical mystery series. I have been told that it actually is more life threatening to the snake for it to ...
5
votes
4answers
212 views

Alien Mammal-Like Ears

So I’m trying to design my alien life around the pressures they might face just like earth’s wildlife, and most things I’ve made plausible life that is similar to ear but not giant dinosaur cats. The ...
7
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2answers
345 views

Anatomically Correct “Stranger Things” Mindflayer's Monster

Background, with potential spoilers: In the Netflix show Stranger Things... If we skip the psychic stuff, there's still a pretty interesting creature there. To qualify as a Mindflayer monster, an ...
1
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5answers
335 views

Anatomically Correct Monsters, Incorporated

In the world of Monsters, Inc., the titular monsters have wildly varying morphologies and abilities, but they nevertheless all seem to be members of the same species; after all, if it was a multi-...
5
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3answers
181 views

Anatomically Correct Hunter from Needle

Hal Clement's novel Needle was revolutionary in featuring a non-parasitic alien lifeform capable of inhabiting a human body. Specifically, the Hunter in its independent form is a gelatinous mass ...
12
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9answers
4k views

Would evolution select for mermaids without breasts?

So ignoring all the other hydrodynamic inefficiencies associated with sticking a human torso on a fish body, let's just worry about those most distinct of human female features, breasts. The problem ...
29
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19answers
10k views

Why do dragons like shiny stuff?

I like the classic trope of dragons loving gold and collecting it in their lair, yet it seems poorly justified. I know that it is often used as a metaphor for greed; "dragons disease" to show how ...
15
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5answers
1k views

Biophage: A creature that kills all other creatures

Concept: For some twisted reason, a xenocidal space-race living somewhere in our vicinity decides that nothing deserves to exist. So they make a species. Any feasible size, any kingdom. It eats ...
1
vote
2answers
151 views

What configuration would provide the most protection for a male dragon's reproductive organs against mechanical and chemical attacks?

Dragons awesome (that's why sub-par writers and DMs use it as a substitute for an actually engaging story/setting) but they're still just animals, animals that reproduce. Besides it's painful to get ...
5
votes
2answers
151 views

What aquatic creatures would evolve in a world with ripped apart/chaotic oceans?

In this world, a progenitor has created a mass of order out of chaos, with the possibility of entropic fluctuations increasing the further out from the center you get. What do I mean by entropic ...
25
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11answers
7k views

What clothes would flying-people wear?

If there were people with wings, who didn't want to be naked all the time, what clothing could they wear, without it interfering with their flying? Note: I am assuming arm-wings, like birds, but you ...
24
votes
7answers
5k views

Could mollusks become extremely large?

In a brand baby spanking new world I am building, appropriately named Escargard, punningly named by the AndyD273, mollusks have become the dominant form of life. Resulting in aliens similar to those ...
7
votes
2answers
468 views

What element would make up a creature if it used the weak nuclear force during its metabolic processes?

I was doing some research on how to design a scientifically possible alien, when I came across an interesting section on metabolism. I found it very interesting and read about the weak force, as ...
2
votes
8answers
506 views

How would Fair Folk-type elves deal with dietary iron?

One of the beliefs about the Fair Folk is that they are repelled or even damaged by iron. For purposes of this question, let's focus more on the latter: namely, how would an elf manage to live to a ...
6
votes
6answers
326 views

Can a machine benefit from stored heat energy?

Setting Overview My world suffers from an abundance of a particular type of energy. This energy can be safely absorbed and utilized by living cells, enabling, for example, a dragon's flight and fiery ...
9
votes
1answer
143 views

Creating an Anatomically Correct Lusca

The Lusca (its name meaning 'Octopus Shark') is a cryptid from the Bahamas, supposedly a 6-9 meter (or even 23 meter) long man-eating Octopus that lives within the blue holes, dragging victims down ...
1
vote
3answers
156 views

what is the proper physical build of a fantasy adveturer? [closed]

I am trying to make a game and I want the characters to look somewhat like they could actually be someone who goes around slaying monsters, fighting evil over lords and their henchmen, all while still ...
9
votes
4answers
672 views

What attributes and how big would a sea creature(s) need to be to tow a ship?

I'm trying to come up with ways as to how a ship could travel places with a very low number of people (like 4 crewmen). One of the ways I like for how to do this is to have large sea creatures ...
3
votes
1answer
167 views

Requirements for race that lives close to a sun [closed]

I have an idea for a race that lives on a planet that is extremely close to a sun (similar to ours), just far enough away to not be pulled in. So my question is, what would be the requirements for a ...
8
votes
4answers
649 views

How would thermophilic fish survive?

I'm designing alien creatures for illustrations, and I'm just sketching some that might live in areas with a lot of geothermal activity. So basically, animals that live around geysers and hot steam. I ...
5
votes
3answers
698 views

The plausibility of a pack-hunting carrion-eating snake

I was thinking of a hypothetical species of snakes that join together for protection called Ladôni, due to their habit of mobilising in massive beds which make them resemble a large multi-headed snake....
12
votes
9answers
2k views

How would my creatures handle groups without a strong concept of numbers?

I'm thinking about a species that is at the intelligence level of proto-humans. They have limited language but can still discuss concrete things with a little bit of abstraction. For instance, their ...