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PostPosted: Sat Jan 25, 2020 2:19 pm 
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I've been thinking about the Magic twists on creatures ported over from D&D and the weird names they've given them, like the Azra (obviously just being Tieflings) and Kithkin (being Hobbits or Halflings, but with some optional telepathy).

So, it's kind of been swirling in my brain of what others think about other iconic D&D creatures and whether they'd want them to be ported over, name and all, or whether they'd be more comfortable with some minor changes.

Like, for instance, would you still call a spider-centaur a Drider, or would you prefer some other name? Would any other change be warranted, like maybe they'd be more like Quelaag, having an entire spider as their lower half (including mouth bits), and/or an elemental shift?

This is just a random example, as a majority of D&D's iconic creatures, like the Tarrasque, are actually borrowed directly from human mythology, which can always be mined for fantastical elements.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 25, 2020 8:19 pm 
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The general question has merit, but I feel like it's hard to come to an all-encompassing answer, so I'll reply with my take for your specific example.

Like, for instance, would you still call a spider-centaur a Drider, or would you prefer some other name? Would any other change be warranted, like maybe they'd be more like Quelaag, having an entire spider as their lower half (including mouth bits), and/or an elemental shift?

Since drider is literally a portmanteau of drow and spider, I'm guessing there'd be an ever stronger reason to change it than with tieflings and halflings. Humder would still be a bit on the nose, though you could go with Ummer, or choose another source for the name.

The two mouths bit I think is a Watsonian matter over a Doylist one: I wouldn't feel the need to change it just for resemble the original creature less, but there could be a chance to add interesting spins to the concept. Example: The human part is an appendage for the spidery main body to manipulate objects and maybe bait humans; as such, the human "half" lacks a brain and their eyes and mouth are mostly vestigial and crude-looking (if even present), so the spider mouth and eyes would be the real ones. Extra creepy on a visual level, and opens the road for truly inhuman characters. Two functional mouths could also work if the race is supposed to be a heavily magical one, if it's closely related to the Fae in-universe for example.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 25, 2020 11:15 pm 
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I'd prefer the popular culture name for a spider centaur being an Arachne.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 25, 2020 11:22 pm 
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Barinellos wrote:
I'd prefer the popular culture name for a spider centaur being an Arachne.

Seems most reasonable to me, though I'd like to see a spider-centaur in a return to Kamigawa with Tsuchigumo or Jorogumo in its name (similar to how some of the greek creatures in theros have generic types)

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:47 am 
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Mind, when our comes to creature type, I think keeping spider and adding a class is the best way to go, rather than crafting a new creature type.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 26, 2020 11:19 am 
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Barinellos wrote:
Mind, when our comes to creature type, I think keeping spider and adding a class is the best way to go, rather than crafting a new creature type.

I'd agree on the YMTC context, but not for the in-universe naming convention. One could go for "spiderfolk" and call it a day, but I'd keep the term for humanoid (if maybe with extra arms) and not kinda-centaur body types.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 26, 2020 1:24 pm 
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Barinellos wrote:
Mind, when our comes to creature type, I think keeping spider and adding a class is the best way to go, rather than crafting a new creature type.

I agree with that. Arasta of the Endless Web may not have a class but she's a humanoid spider with the typeline of spider.

Naming convention would be kind of plane-based. Like I don't think houndfolk out of Tarkir would be called Ainok. And Bug-taurs (type: insect) are "Nantuko" on Dominaria but "Kraul" on Ravnica.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 28, 2020 2:22 am 
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I've long been a proponent of the separation of church and state, that is to say canon and our organisation.
But I've got a character who might have an interesting mini-story dossier that has percolated in my brain.

The catch to it is for it to work, I need a certain degree of canon adjacent material. His background would be deeply rooted in existent lore, but should not explicitly actually have any real overlap to speak of.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2020 11:35 pm 
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Orcish would be best able to answer this, or maybe Ruwin, but neither are around, so I'll put it out to everyone. Who is taller, Beryl or Aloise? I've always imagined Beryl as the taller of the two, but I haven't tracked down any specific mention of it.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 4:06 am 
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Aloise always struck me as a shorty.
Beryl, meanwhile was tallish and lanky, for sure.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 1:14 pm 
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Barinellos wrote:
Aloise always struck me as a shorty.
Beryl, meanwhile was tallish and lanky, for sure.

That's pretty much how I've always pictured it, too.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 3:28 pm 
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I'd guess Beryl is the tallest too, though by a rather small margin.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 6:47 pm 
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Here's a fun question for people: How long is a merfolk's tail in comparison to the legs of a comparable human? If both a human and a merfolk have precisely the same dimensions in the torso, let's say "X," and the human lower body is "Y," what would the Merfolk tail be? Would it be the same, "Y," or would it be greater than or less than "Y" and by how much?


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 9:11 pm 
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Here's a fun question for people: How long is a merfolk's tail in comparison to the legs of a comparable human? If both a human and a merfolk have precisely the same dimensions in the torso, let's say "X," and the human lower body is "Y," what would the Merfolk tail be? Would it be the same, "Y," or would it be greater than or less than "Y" and by how much?

Given all available visual aids, it would appear that the average merfolk tail composes as much as 3/5ths their body length. (speculatively)
Translating that, I'd estimate the length to be equivalent as if they had a second thigh length on their lower body.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 9:27 pm 
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Barinellos wrote:
Here's a fun question for people: How long is a merfolk's tail in comparison to the legs of a comparable human? If both a human and a merfolk have precisely the same dimensions in the torso, let's say "X," and the human lower body is "Y," what would the Merfolk tail be? Would it be the same, "Y," or would it be greater than or less than "Y" and by how much?

Given all available visual aids, it would appear that the average merfolk tail composes as much as 3/5ths their body length. (speculatively)
Translating that, I'd estimate the length to be equivalent as if they had a second thigh length on their lower body.

Okay, so in terms of average height/length, it sounds like we'd add approximately a foot/foot-and-a-half to figure out merfolk average heights, assuming they are roughly proportional to humans, anyway.

Sounds good. Thanks.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 9:34 pm 
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Barinellos wrote:
Here's a fun question for people: How long is a merfolk's tail in comparison to the legs of a comparable human? If both a human and a merfolk have precisely the same dimensions in the torso, let's say "X," and the human lower body is "Y," what would the Merfolk tail be? Would it be the same, "Y," or would it be greater than or less than "Y" and by how much?

Given all available visual aids, it would appear that the average merfolk tail composes as much as 3/5ths their body length. (speculatively)
Translating that, I'd estimate the length to be equivalent as if they had a second thigh length on their lower body.

Okay, so in terms of average height/length, it sounds like we'd add approximately a foot/foot-and-a-half to figure out merfolk average heights, assuming they are roughly proportional to humans, anyway.

Sounds good. Thanks.

No problem.
Looking through the various and sundry examples, there certainly are some extreme outliers, but in the older sets which had more prevalent uniformity, I stand by my estimation.
Because there are some that are waaaaaay longer, but those are from rather... distinct visual periods.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 19, 2020 8:10 pm 
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How do dryads come about? Like, do they just spring from trees like fruit, or does one dryad have to meet with another dryad, or what?

I mostly ask this because I had a silly idea about a (D&D jargon incoming) sylvan bloodline sorcerer with a doting mother who's a dryad that wouldn't let him leave home without a "bodyguard" (read: an animate plant creature), but they're in "it's not a 'phase,' mom," territory and specialize in fire magics (which, of course, doesn't burn plants). It's probably a concept that would need to be heavily adjusted to work inside of most settings (Magic or no), but I can't help but chuckle at the idea and I don't know if there's any real official lore on where dryads really come from across the multiverse.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 20, 2020 7:09 pm 
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How do dryads come about? Like, do they just spring from trees like fruit, or does one dryad have to meet with another dryad, or what?

I mostly ask this because I had a silly idea about a (D&D jargon incoming) sylvan bloodline sorcerer with a doting mother who's a dryad that wouldn't let him leave home without a "bodyguard" (read: an animate plant creature), but they're in "it's not a 'phase,' mom," territory and specialize in fire magics (which, of course, doesn't burn plants). It's probably a concept that would need to be heavily adjusted to work inside of most settings (Magic or no), but I can't help but chuckle at the idea and I don't know if there's any real official lore on where dryads really come from across the multiverse.

I have no idea how dryads work in terms of either mythological terms or MTG terms. I suspect that they are simply "beings of magic" that kind of come into existence or are created, sort of like an elemental, but I have no source on that.

If this is a character for the M:EM or just for your own thing, I would just have dryads on your plane/world work however you want them to for the character. If not, you can always use a different understanding of "mother" than the limited "she who gave birth to the person" model. There are countless other types of mothers even throughout our own culture to support that, so I don't think you have to worry about it too much.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 21, 2020 12:13 am 
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I have no idea how dryads work in terms of either mythological terms or MTG terms. I suspect that they are simply "beings of magic" that kind of come into existence or are created, sort of like an elemental, but I have no source on that.

That appears to be true for Theros at least, but just like there are multiple kinds of vampires and zombies, I see no reason to require dryads to behave consistently between planes. Indeed, some representations appear to be more like spirits of the forest than flesh-and-blood creatures.

I have read one work of fiction in which dryad reproduction required both mating with a human male and planting a seed from the mother's tree, to become the daughter's tree. Such unions were almost invariably female, though, and not all settings want to use the idea of a permanent bond with a single tree; Wrenn, for example, seems to have bonded with a succession of Treefolk instead.

The idea of growing from fruit is also interesting, so if it works for your story, go for it!


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 21, 2020 1:02 am 
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Brentain wrote:
That appears to be true for Theros at least, but just like there are multiple kinds of vampires and zombies, I see no reason to require dryads to behave consistently between planes. Indeed, some representations appear to be more like spirits of the forest than flesh-and-blood creatures.

Yeah, I 100% agree.

Also, it does my heart a world of good to see you around her again, Brentain! I was getting pretty worried about you. I hope everything is going as well as can be expected in these crazy, crazy times.


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