LESSON Creating half-animal/anthro races

Discussion in 'DEVELOPING CHARACTERS & CULTURES' started by Minibit, Apr 6, 2015.

  1. Who doesn't love a foxy catgirl? How can a character with eagle wings not be fun?

    There are lots of benefits and fun times to be had when roles are available that aren't entirely human, and the half-animal approach is a tried-and-true fan favourite.

    So today we're going to talk about not fucking it up!

    1. Learn about the species you're using
      Do a little research! Even reading a couple of wildlife journal articles on it can treat you to some fun trivia and facts that can add new dimensions to your species.
    2. Incorporate some traits of the animal
      Many half-animal races are essentially extra-agile/sensitive humans with ears and a tail tacked on. Not a lot really wrong with this, it's a fun, simple way to add a gimmick to a race, but you can add a lot more depth and identity to your race by connecting them more solidly to the animal you incorporate. How about cat people being lactose intolerant? a half-mouse who has to gnaw at things to keep their teeth from overgrowing?
    3. Creation story
      How did half-animals happen? Are they from an evolutionary line similar to humans, but came from something besides apes? Were they created by a divine being? The result of mass lab experiments reproducing? Any time you create an unusual species or race, it doesn't hurt to think about how they got there.
    4. Culture
      How does this connection to animals affect their culture? If applicable for the species, are they vegetarian? How do they view the actual animal? As a holy creature? As kin? An (un?)welcome reminder of their roots?
    These are definitely not the only things you should consider while creating an anthro/half-animal race, nor is it a creation process (talking about steps of how to create is for another thread!) There are always TONS of different ways to come at any element of worldbuilding, and I want to hear all of them, so it's sharing time!

    Do you have anything else you think should be considered when making a half-animal race? Go ahead and comment it below!
    #1 Minibit, Apr 6, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2015
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  2. Rant on Creation (open)
    Hmm, as far as creation goes, I would like to point out that certain genetic sequences can be spliced into certain cells that when they grow they would grow in certain ways allowing such abnormalities as such is implied above. I do not believe that biological engineering is advanced enough yet to accomplish this perfectly though.

    Rant on Magic (open)
    You could choose the simplistic route and say a deity created them. Though, I would say that is a cop-out in my opinion since you are taking a shortcut. Otherwise, the "magical" aspect covers most of the creation process, of which I find incredibly boring. I have a issue with anything "magical" since it implies ignorance of how it is used at the fundamental level. Most of the time though, magic will imply an energy of sorts. Some people will realize that since it is an energy, it must either have a positive (good), neutral (neutral), or negative (evil) charge. Now, there are people that will say there are different types of magic and different schools or whatnot, of which I will reply that the same can be said about energy. Not all energy has the same frequency or tone as other energy, and when you add the charge differences, the selection can be quite diverse.

    That is all I wanted to say, let me know if I crossed any boundaries or whatnot with the magic part. Read at your own risk or not, up to you.

    What I mean is, your end result is what matters, but it is the path that gets you there that matters more to me. Are you gene splicing for genetic mutations and doing trial and error? Are you just having a wizard magic in some beings from imagination? How you discern your ways is up to you, but in the end, just know that there are many ways to create a entity, and even more that I don't even know or use. Please correct me if you believe I am wrong.
  3. Creation: Very true! This isn't really possible in Earth As We Know It, but not all stories are set in Earth as We know it, some might be set in the future, or in an alternate reality where materials and resources exist to make this kind of thing possible, or maybe a fantasy world where magic plays a helping hand!

    Magic: I can understand why you'd see it as a cop-out, many do. But many enjoy using magic and deities to add more fantastical and otherwise impossible elements to their stories; this is one of those things that is just a difference of opinion :)

    Different methods: *sigh* YES, there are many different ways a person may come at the process of creating a new race; there are probably as many processes as there are worldbuilders, which is a lot!

    This guide is not about the creation process or the steps in building a new race, though. This post is about things you should keep in mind when you're designing an anthro/half-human race. I listed a few things that I personally think are important to take into consideration when you want to make an anthro/half-animal race, and I've invited others to share things that they also think are important to take into account

    If you'd like to share your process for creating an anthro/half-animal race, you are more than welcome to create a new thread to do so in; we'd all love to see your method in this subject :3

    I've edited my OP for clarity

    I should just copy/paste a "this is not the only way, this is just a list of some tips that I personally find useful and thought others might find some inspiration in" on every workshop I write =3=
    #3 Minibit, Apr 8, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2015
  4. Very true, to be fair I was hesitant to post this part.
    I see, my apologies for any misunderstanding I may have had.
    Nowhere did I intend to suggest that, I was just commenting. Please forgive me if I implied that. I appreciate your work to try and help inspiration.

    I digress and leave this thread with a lingering feeling that I have done something very wrong, but as to what, I cannot fathom. I apologize for any wrong-doing that I may have done.