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Should Animals have a Queen Mother?
Poll ended at Fri Apr 27, 2012 6:00 pm
Yes 29%  29%  [ 5 ]
No 71%  71%  [ 12 ]
Total votes : 17
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 4:03 pm 
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Vanishing. U put up a good argumemt. it has potential. It combines a lot of the ideas thrown about and it still feels wild znd strange. Without an obvious hive mind. will think on it.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 6:25 pm 
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First post! Good job, now post more...

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Here is my own take on the animals.

Wolves are one of the most social animals on Earth. They have packs that generally follow a certain organization of command through mostly who is the most dominant. Their sense of smell is rediculous and has been possibly thought to allow them to follow common trails as well as identify many things.

But I'm more curious what happens if you try to make them something more...

Humans are able to endure longer than most animals and avoid overheating through having no fur or much less hair than other animals, allowing their body to radiate heat away and cool off with sweat. Being able to grasp objects allows humans to manipulate their environment more (minimal manipulation, like using sticks and stones).

So I have this thought of something closer to the size of a horse but nearly resembles a dog or wolf. They would either have something more skin-like (probably not a brownish-tan pigment) or horse-hair.

Then if you just give them a tentacle-like appendage or two from around their neck or shoulders you get an animal who can do more than simply claw and bite, but strangle, grab, and maybe a few other things. At the end of these appendages could be stingers or something as well to spread their virus.

What do you think?




These are pretty close.
Image
Image

Yes those are from Final Fantasy 7.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 9:48 pm 
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Vanishing i actually like that a lot. if we were to give all fluff concerning animals as attack reports, journals, studies etc. that would be another way that we could further their story without giving away any plot details.

graywolves i like how your thinking about adaptations, but i dont think hairless is a good one. i live in Massachusetts and it gets pretty chilly up here in the winter. on matts map of where he wants the game to take place, we just barely made it in on the southern corner, so i think that anything without some way of insulating themselves is a poor adaptation.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 10:29 pm 
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Yes. Personally i think we don't need to streach too far out of the bounds of Animals in squads using pack/herd/flock mentality and different speices working together as a expanded symbiotic relationship perhaps animals on this other planet didn't need as much energy from their prey as they get from a kill on out planet so they leave alot of left overs and other animals join them without fear as they will share in even a small kill. Perhaps the main animal speices or multiple speices supplument their eaten energy with solar photosynthesis...desert planet with little life? Sun gives the extra inbetween meals...earth is lush but they still dont need to eat as much.

Also i think personally the X'lanthos virus effecting animals is far fetched...effecting alien animals...it would be like a banana catching a cold. And they don't need a deus ex virus-acinina as i stated eariler i think just useing natureal animal psychology will work fine. For an example of the level on inteligence and planning a pack mentality can accomplish see Jurassic Park. The Raptors are a perfect example. In the third one they are mutated slightly or evolved or something and they are smarter and dont kill a human outright in order to get more prey. So a bunch of different speices with this level of inteligence would easily work together for their own good.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 11:45 pm 
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actually steven spielberg has accoratly portrayed every dinosaur to the best of scientific knowlage in all jurassic park movies (he originally took crap for having the velociraptor so big but a year or two later they found a skeleton that size lol). i think that the pack mentality alone is something solid to fall back on, i personally think that its sci-fi enough.
as for the banana catching a cold, i dont know about bananas but their was a pepper plant a year or two ago that was thought to make humans sick. cant find the article, but learned that AIDS was started by a chimp virus from here: http://www.virology.ws/2010/04/26/a-pla ... rtebrates/

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 12:32 am 
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What iif we relied on pack mentality and only used the virus to encourage evolutionary to encourage evolutionary change.


oh and the alien virus killed all the humans. i would say thats a step above a cold.

Lets keep a pack mentality but have the virus act as a vehicle for spreading genitic material. what if the said grey wolves contracted thw virus with each kill and the genes from the virus spread through the wolf pack along with the virus. this could allow for extreme genetic variations in a given pack and from their rely on natural symbiotic relationships to bring species together.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 12:10 pm 
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Reposting this here since the previous topic seems dead:

Hey guys and gals,

I’ve recently become interested in Dark Potential and the animal faction seems pretty cool to me. Just letting you know that I’m a Ph.D. student studying Palaeobiology (UK spelling), Evolution and Taphonomy. I'm pretty pressed for time with my studies, and will slowly catch up on everything in this topic. I've watched almost all of the videos now.

I can however offer some help in the final stages of the formation of this faction. If you would like, I can determine whether what everyone has come up with is evolutionary plausible/possible, as I have an in-depth knowledge of evolution.
Feel free to PM me your ideas and I'll keep checking this topic.

P.s. @saltinerunner45
Steven Spielberg did not accurately represent the palaeontological knowledge of the time in Jurassic Park, or any of it's sequels.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 2:21 pm 
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While I like vanishing´s post a lot then it still needs the motivational factor...

Why do the animals care about these areas, and perhaps more vitally... why would the non infected care about them? It is a bit too convenient to just say the animals tend to hoard around ... hoards of dark matter stuff.

Since lost technology and dark matter reserves seem to the most vital premise of the technology using factions, then why would the animals ever bother about this? Did they just happen to decide that the nice dark fusion power plant was a cozy place to settle for the winter?

Also about jurassic park.... it was a movie series based on two simple premises... T-rex biggest and baddest, and raptors... semi smart and scary! The rest where just kinda fill stuff.
But still decent movie for its time in my opinion anyways! :)


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 2:47 pm 
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Alright!

After a large pizza and about an 2 hours of reading and thinking here's what I've got on my mind:


We pretty much have to use an alien species(or plural), otherwise the minis will probably be boring. I also think that everyone is jumping the gun a little and cutting off some imagination by trying to base whatever alien species is developed by saying things like 'reptilian', 'mammalian' or 'plant-like'. We really should work from the basics: i.e. does it have an endo/exo/both/no skeleton; does it reproduce sexually/asexually/both etc? That's just something I wanted to get out there, but feel we should go into detail in later on once the other ideas of the faction are smoothed out. I don't want to change the topic dramatically.

So... back on topic.

I do like Vanishing's idea a lot, moreso the 'not explaining' the complete agenda behind the animal faction. The 'accounts of attacks' is something that worked very well in writing the fluff for tyranids.

However, if Matthew ultimately decides that he wants a single species that is just living as itself with no external control, but also has variation in morphology (without having a 'hive' system of workers or soldiers)... then this is the idea I have at the moment:

There could be an alien species that was discovered with an exceptional trait involving a chemical compound (that we can choose now) or number of compounds that were originally a defence or hunting evolution. We can further discuss the actual use of this ability, but I was thinking along the lines of it sprayed a potent chemical compound from some point on its body.

This species is already relatively intelligent (smarter than wolves/dogs) and hunts in packs. It was then also domesticated by the humans and/or the X'Lanthos. The key thing about this is that with domestication, we can vary the morphology of these animals quite a lot, while simply retaining an easy reason for them to still work together (i.e. a Chihuahua will still happily form a pack with a Doberman... they both aren't concerned about the physical differences, they still see each other as the same species).

The morphology of these aliens can depend on what the domesticator wanted them to do. I.e. someone may have bred a species that can spray it's compound much further or faster than other's and is exceptionally loyal as a military experiment. Or they may have been bred as pit fighting creatures to secrete their compound on enlarged claws and are exceptionally aggressive. You could even have a dim version that is simply swollen with its chemical and runs forward engaging in close combat and subsequently exploding nasty goo everywhere (back the to German bomb dogs :D ).

If this species also reproduces asexually (as well as sexually to allow domestication), then it would allow a viable population to remain with GREATLY varied morphologies.

Having a pack mentality also works well with the current mechanics of DP (having a commanding unit that increases the leadership of nearby other units), as the alpha/larger individuals of the pack would make the smaller/submissive ones feel safer and be less likely to run off. Matt made it clear with his salvagers that he wanted all the factions to be tactical in their movement and retreat when they should... nothing is mindless and just runs forward to its death... (ignore the exploding critter then :lol: ).

The motivation to fight can also then be determined by the territorial aggressiveness of the larger creatures or the need to feed the pack.

Quick note:

I wanna stress guys and glas that this is just something I'm throwing out there and ideas for new species are not my expertise... I can pretty much just say if something is possible and/or plausible within the realms of evolution. Let me know if you think my idea sucks or is good :wink:


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 7:25 pm 
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From the last developers diary it seem that a change in morphology(even drastic) isn't something Matt would be opposed to! I like that we should all definently start from the very ground up! My vote is for endo and exo skeleton as for sexuality perhaps like the Dragons in Reign of Fire? One Larger male and a bunch of female in a pack...isn't this also like how Lions work? One male leads the pride? And we domesticated cats. There are all sorts of cats and all sorts of dogs all with basically the same basic body types and abilities but vast variations.

Here is what i'm observing so far. I feel in our attempt to avoid tropes or overused ideas, we are...cheapening, not the right word i want to use but meh, our Potential(hehehe) with the Animal race. We are trying to avoid Tyranids. This is good! But we may be going too far with it. To have completely different speices working together is our attempt to avoid the genetic veriation of tyranids. But as the last post stated we dont need that vast amount of difference to make a valid faction. Anyway we have all been trying to find reasons WHY they are working together. So we add a virus and farming and mind control and it gets far fetched quickly. Most symbotic relationships are between two animals tops. Not enough for a faction. So let us perhaps do two things that are unpresidented in wargaming and i think all gameing one is that variation within a single army list will be comfined to one speices and different subtypes like dogs and cat are. AND we allow a mulitude of spieces into the game.

So one Animal army is all dogs and another is all cats. YOu can't mix them but you could own both. And the ANimal book details all the different animal sub-factions you can play and their rules. They could all work really differently. And is having a multitude of inteligent predatory or at least hostile animals far-fetched, a little, but not when you think of all the ones we have on our planet and then multiply that by 30 something planets in the colonies. We have Lion, Wolves, Bears, Killer bees, Aligators, and many others that hunt or at least are hostile to humans on this planet alone. All inteligent enough to successfully kill and outsmart people occasionally. So we could have plenty of animals. ANd then matt could just add a small booklet with a new animal race every once and awhile or add new sub-types that aren't discovered or nvented but just that the gamers are being told about just now. So kinda retcon the animals in like gw does with new vehicles.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 11:13 pm 
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reading both your posts i was thinking that the animals could have originally been domesticated x'lanthos pets. unless the fluff has changed, the x'lanthos that the humans know about a renagades/exiles/scouts, and probably wouldnt be able to bring their pets along.
if this were the case, the colonial animals would have no reason to obey the x'lanthos, but would still naturally work in a group. also, if the x'lanthos were breeding them for centuries, they would already have acculimated mutations before humans even saw them, potentially making them the dominant life forms on a few planets. perhaps thats why they defend the areas they do; because the areas have plant life that is similar to the planets they were taken from. i mean if your and animal that eats bark and a plopped in a desert you wont be happy, unless you can find an oasis and trees that have bark.
as for their makeup, i would say something alien for a skeleton (perhaps it surrounds their organs like an exoskeleton but is still within them), sexual reproduction to allow for gene spread (i like the reign of fire idea, but then you have the problem of loosing your male) and have a tachymetabolism which would force them to feed often.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 5:07 am 
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Arnil, I think that's a brilliant idea, however:

Arnil wrote:
YOu can't mix them but you could own both. And the ANimal book details all the different animal sub-factions you can play and their rules. ...


I think there's a flaw there, because generally people don't like to buy models that they can't use every game or with their other models. Asin they may as well buy another faction, otherwise it will essentially be a different army but play the same as their other one.

Maybe what we could do now is to just establish a single species with varied morphologies based around a core adaptation of that species (as I said earlier, a chemical compound adaptation suits best I think). Sort out what it looks like, get some ref art etc. Then we can fill out the origin and reasons to fight after (saltinerunner45 seems to have lots of varied ideas for that that could be used).

So here's the basics:
These are terrestrial animals, so likely need skeletons - exoskeletons appear more 'alien' to us since we have endoskeletons. It's perfectly reasonable to also have mineralised exoskeleton areas (i.e. big plates of a hard mineral) or osteoderms. We would want these to be aggressive, intelligent and predatory animals because that will help account for their behaviour. Matt seems to want them to be non-humanoid, so they should at least be quadrupeds (4 legs.. but they could have more). They also need to fit into the mechanics of the game (i.e. the ability to fall back, regroup and be affected by the leadership of other friendly models).

I personally would like the idea that these organisms may be able to use what they ingest by re-depositing the elements/compounds as hardened areas in their skin/exoskeleton. In fact, that in itself could lead to quite a varied morphology, however it would not account for different weapons/behaviours unlike domestication.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 10:58 am 
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ChaosRaptor wrote:
I personally would like the idea that these organisms may be able to use what they ingest by re-depositing the elements/compounds as hardened areas in their skin/exoskeleton. In fact, that in itself could lead to quite a varied morphology, however it would not account for different weapons/behaviours unlike domestication.

i think it could potentially effect weapons if their exoskeleton is what allowed them to use their acids. like if it has tubes on its wrists or back that allow it to shoot the acid, but the hole it comes out of becomes smaller or wider it would be a farther more accurate shot or more of a spray.

you earlier mentioned using it on claws, but that is just one CC weapon, you could have it secreted on teeth or potentially all over their exoskeleton so that anything attacking them in CC gets hurt. perhaps they could secrete the acid on some projectile and shoot (multiple shots could be muscle contractions, single or limited shots could be like mechanical dispersion of seeds or something similar).

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 2:38 pm 
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@saltinerunner45

Exactly. This idea allows for a single species to have different 'units'.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 2:47 pm 
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Just tossing out a name suggestion for the animal faction: The Moreau, or just Moreau

Has anyone here ever read The Island of Doctor Moreau?
It's a book about two people who wind up on an island where another man named Doctor Moreau is perform experiments on animals to make them more human-like. The animals become intelligent and work together (for the most part), even having a leader amoung themselves. Perhaps the animal-faction could be called Moreau's in reference to this story. I know it's not like DP animals would have a human-level intelligence, or walk upright, and even speak the way they do in the book, but they do however show sophisticated interaction which could almost be branded as human-like.


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