76

Just going by the features themselves it would mostly be soreness and an acclimatisation period after coming in and out of gear. Chances are, your ability to see in the dark, cope with sudden bright light and to deal with loud noise, hear quiet noises and deal with a wide band of volume will be reduced for a while. However, I tremble at how much this could ...


76

It could be an organ for communication. As we know, Dolphins and Whales communicate by sonar sound waves. The teeth of dolphins are arranged in a way that makes them act like sonar antennae (read more about it here). They basically hear with their lower jaw. The same principle could apply to Unicorns. They can create horse-like sounds, but do so only to ...


54

The answer is simple: you hold their hand. (Source: The experience of raising a toddler who is currently wielding a highlighter under my desk while I write this. I'm keeping her fed with sufficient paper; so far the walls and carpet are unadulterated) One of the more terrifying things for a parent in today's society is cars. Cars move fast. You don't ...


51

Display. A peacock's display feathers have no practical function and exist solely to demonstrate the animal's fitness as a potential mate. From a practical perspective, its display feathers are something of a liability. The now-extinct Irish Elk had antlers so large in relation to body size that they seem unwieldy. It has been speculated that their large ...


35

It could be as simple as sexual selection A lot of natural features that occur in animals have no other obvious reason for occuring and have become integral to a species. colour, frills etc. The narwhal has one horn, we don't really know why it has it. But it's thought to be linked to dominance or mating displays of some sort.


25

The only problem with such comparisons is that real-life one-horned animals have their horns on a practical area of the head--the upper snout. That way, the animals can have a longer reach against a charging predator, forcing it to brake its feet. The unicorn, by contrast, has its horn usually set on the forehead. The late Miocene toxodontid Trigodon had ...


20

Magic Unicorns can use their horns to purify foul water, strip away malign enchantments, and heal injuries. But magic resides in the brain, so the horn needs a direct connection to the brain in order to efficiently channel magical energy. The horn's spiral pattern and sharp tip help the unicorn focus and direct its magical energies.


18

Risk of cave-ins As you stated in your question, the cave which contains the technology has already caved in at least once in the past. The local populace may be fearful of the cave being unstable and, if they were to disturb it by delving inside, the cave could collapse and kill the explorers. This would discourage them from attempting to explore, the ...


17

User Liam Morris already gave a very comprehensive answer, yet there is one possibility that I would like to add. There is no reason to investigate the spring The hot spring just looks like a regular geothermal spring unless one is willing to put extraordinary effort into exploring it. Make the island have a volcanic past, like Island, Hawaii or the ...


16

Whatever was around. How about cows, or camels, reindeer, llamas, ostriches, elephants. Take your pick, anything big enough, strong enough, and trainable can be ridden. What makes a good riding animal? Temperament, strength, stamina, diet. Not necessarily in that order, ideally you want a herd herbivore of some sort. Temperament is a key one here, ...


15

I like the other answers but I would like to point out one advantage of a horn on the forehead, used as a weapon. Think about the line of forces when the horn is horizontal and impacts a target at speed - a bit like a medieval knight's lance. In a nose based horn, the shock and impact is transmitted along the entire length of the skull - its maximum ...


11

How your dragons behave will largely be up to how they are built biologically, especially since there isn't a supernatural element. This is obviously up to you, but here is a quick rundown of the typical lifestyles of these types of animals based on organisms that actually exist (or used to exist). Endothermic or Ectothermic? Here's really your largest ...


11

Theoretically yes, practically no We get questions like this all the time, "is it possible to remove humanity's violent behavior?" In my answer to how to domesticate hippos I pointed out (among other things) that an experiment conducted on the Russian Red Fox required 20 generations to achieve 35% domestication. Let's assume that some human violent ...


9

Tantrums do cause disasters, on a semi-regular basis. However, once the parents have thus demonstrated their inability to control sufficiently powerful toddlers, the children get taken from them and placed under the control of the magically-powerful sorcerors who run the government, who adopt them into their families. This both preserves the power structure ...


9

The spring emerges from a local cave which has been filled / caved in by a past civilisation, since the water is secretly heated by engineered means. Any society that can create engineering that lasts thousands of years, is probably capable of covering up the the cave so it looks like (and in fact is) solid rock. As far as the locals are concerned, ...


8

I'd expect soldiers top have similar effects to astronauts being used to zero gravity after coming back to earth, basically, expecting the same effects when not using the AR: Not understanding why he can't see in the dark Being unable to recognize team members without the identification box Being too disoriented by the background noise Expecting to hear ...


7

Not Much I'm assuming here that you're separating 'taming' from 'domestication'. Taming - Breaking, then jumping on a wild horse and riding it Domestication - Corralling, feeding, and selective breeding Since domestication instils and reinforces required behaviour traits, and selective breeding guides physical traits, I'd say that domesticating two ...


7

Stabbing. Most animals' horns are a huge liability for a charging strike. You either have to go head down and rely on your neck muscles to keep your head from being snapped off, or use the charge for terror and swing your nose more like a morning star to deal more damage. In either case, the common theme is a shitload of neck musculature. Unicorn horns are ...


7

Real World (TM) sea turtles might not have teeth, but they do have esophageal papillae that are quite gruesome to look at, but help the turtle snare and consume jelly fish. These hard, spiky projections are made of keratin, similar to baleen. As the link mentions, the turtle does ingest a little water with its jellyfish diner, and uses these projections ...


6

Why don't we ride zebras? I will answer your question by answering a different, but related, one: Why don't we ride zebras? The zebras are further away from modern horses than the Przewalski's horse, but is still a species under the Equus genus. They look like horses and can carry up to 350 kg weight, so why don't we ride them? Short answer: they can't (...


6

I am going to reuse my answer to the following question (emphasizing my lasr paragraph): How do I explain a unicorn discharging powerful electricity at a distance? TL;DR: the unicorn shoots lightning through it. While it is true that air does not conduct electricity as nicely as water, it is also true that there is no (engineering) problem that cannot be ...


6

Children's "power" scales with age Look how hard heavyweight boxers get punched. How could a child ever learn boxing if they would get punched that hard! Well, 5 year olds learning the basics of boxing aren't in the ring with Wlad Klitschko, they are in the ring with other 5 year olds. Those five year olds can't hit hard enough to do any real lasting ...


5

Is it a behaviour that could have plausibly evolved? You need to give the male some reason to run. Usually, I think that this behavior involves several males chasing one female. The winning male would have demonstrated superiority over the losers. But with the typical male, it wouldn't make sense to reverse this. The optimal male approach would be to ...


5

Carrion feeders Reptiles love them some carrion, and wings are the perfect way to get around. Imagine your dragons as the world's biggest vultures, chasing mere birds out of the way and commandeering carcasses. This would work well in locations with a lot of meat on the hoof, like tropical grasslands, or along big herd migration routes. Deep sea fishermen ...


5

So, according to the Wikipedia page on Saturn's rings, and this handy "optical depth" to transmittance calculator I found, the amount of light blocked by Saturn's rings varies. C ring; ~12% - nearly transparant B Ring; ~60-100%, Structure varies heavily. A Ring; ~60-90% - Heavy overcast day? Now - Saturn's rings are mainly water ice, with some dust. ...


5

This is less about learning and more about training. They would learn: Humanoids are not food. Or at the very least, their elves aren't. Elves are different than gryphons and they can't play with them the same way they play with other gryphons. How to follow specific commands from their elves? What they can learn is tied directly to how intelligent they ...


4

The augmentation is primarily sensory. The heightened sense of perception in a combat zone will induce a greater probability of soldiers suffering post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). During deployment, for example, on patrol and especially they are likely to suffer from headaches and earaches. Firstly, due to wearing the augmentation technology, and ...


4

This sounds like subliminal advertising The United States does not have a specific federal or state law addressing the use of subliminal messages in advertising. Instead, it is the country's advertising and broadcasting regulatory agencies that deal with the topic and its impact on the public. In contrast, other countries do have specific laws in place ...


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