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PostSubject: Predator Nonsense   Thu May 07, 2015 4:42 pm

The following threads are about predator sense, according to Google-san.:

Here's the thing, now would be as good a time as any to figure out how we want to go about it, or at least make all our suggestions. So, starting by what TQM said in 2008...

TheQuantumMechanic wrote:
Not as hard as you think; I am not too fond of the idea of the "Predator Sense" at all, but since it's been stated to exist, there's not much to do other than take it into consideration. However, it can not possibly be an infallible, perfectly accurate 'mental radar' that unerringly directs a predator to prey regardless of how or where they hide. That is just not possible, for a number of reasons.

1) Concealment techniques are one of the most effective mechanisms within the predation cycle, for both predator and prey; Ambush predators rely on such techniques to catch food for themselves, as well as avoid their own predators. Their own predators; meaning that creatures that prey on Giant Nagas and other "Great Preds" also have this "Predator Sense", and if it was completely infallible and accurate, it would be impossible for the average Naga to survive into adulthood, unless raised within a large and well-armed society. A small village just wouldn't cut it.

2) In the natural predation cycle, generalized predators have a success rate of roughly 10%; meaning that nearly 90% of all their hunts end in failure, due to not being able to find prey, prey escaping, etc. That rate is going to be skewed a little bit more towards a predator's favor on Felarya, but not to the point that they're always going to find a human hiding in a clever spot; if that was the case, no Great Pred on Felarya would ever have to actually work for a meal, or worry about going hungry.

Let me rephrase those points. If pred sense was close to 100% accurate,

1- at least one step in the trophic ladder would be gone, because it would invariably fail at hiding from their predators. The predator sense can't be 100% accurate, or else all giant nagas would be eaten by predsensing preds! Think of Crisis, please don't kill her with a 100% accurate predator sense!
2- Well, this one isn't so true anymore, but back when it was written, nagas could live on 5 humans a day. So if they didn't need to work too hard, they wouldn't be taking enough risks to keep things interesting.


Karbo himself said the predator sense got blown out of proportion a bit. I was kind of dense about it... but fine, I get it. We're exaggerating, I get it.


Another detail about predator sense, and since you let this get in the wiki, Karbo, I'm 'ssuming you haven't got much of a beef with it. We know the following species have predator sense: nagas, fairies, deerataurs, some types of predators, and magic elementals. In fact, magic elementals are listed as having the best predator sense, and the strongest reaction to it.

Could we extrapolate this and say that having the predator sense leaves you exposed to it? TQM seemed to have that in mind when he created the Compass chlaena item, and since it got into the wiki, I assume extrapolating that much wouldn't be a huge issue.



BTW, where does Crisis stand with all this predator sense talk? Is she better than the average naga, fairy, deerataur, magic elemental?

I'm assuming it goes sorta like this- †nagas < deerataurs < fairies < Crisis < magic elementals

but I could be wrong. It might be more complicated than just ranking them by level. :B


A way of thwarting the sense would be convenient, too, or at least limiting its usefulness. Some stuff has been suggested on that line. Both AJ and I suggested, separated by a few years, that staying close to a tree should be enough to at least mask yourself. I'd like to suggest now, what if we looked at Gwada's idea last year? Does learning magic make you spottable through predsense, or is it the minerals and magic you include in yourself? I would've considered at some point, just to be a contrarian, that it's actually recent arrivals that are the most easily spotted by predator sense. Fits some stories, eh?

But some way to mask yourself through a spell seems necessary; we know there was one in the manga, which Crisis almost thwarted, but ultimately didn't. So basically, the following seem to be factors in predator sense:

-Being alive: necessary, but not sufficient condition.
-Having magic in you.
-Being a wizard, and if so, how strong.
-Having a spell to mask your signature.

Beyond that, I'd like to ask...

-Is size a factor? That'd help explain why larger creatures seem to get more of predator sense than small ones.
-Is number a factor? I could see predator sense as being more capable of detecting creatures that are clustered together than creatures that are spread out. It'd explain why they seem to pick on caravans and leave single critters alone.
-How does distance affect it?
-Do barriers affect it? Could I hide behind 100 feet of dirt? How about just 20? Is wood more effective? How about silver? How about silverwood?

That's just the food for thoughts I've gathered so far. See ya.

Fais que ton rÍve soit plus long que la nuit.
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PostSubject: Re: Predator Nonsense   Fri May 08, 2015 4:15 am

Personally, I think the Predator Sense (tm) is a relic of when Felarya was still in its infancy before it exploded into this mess of largely incompatible new and old concepts. When you boil it down, it seems to just be your standard magic sensing ability that wouldn't be uncommon, and in fact would be expected, among mages worth their salt. I think the problem is that, for a while, there was no variety in how different predators hunted or spotted prey. It was largely walk around aimlessly until their spider sense tingled and then make a mad dash toward the prey. And so when everyone was largely the same, that ability started to feel nonsensical.

I personally think that the Predator Sense (tm) should be gone and instead be retooled into whatever until hunting style better fits the race itself. For magic dependent races like fairies and I suppose nagas, since we're told they veer toward magic despite people having shown very little evidence of such, to be able to sense magic and use it as a tool to spot preys. For harpies, it would fit them better that they use their absurdly sharp eyesight. For dridders, they could make use of their webs, like lay down thin webs which if tripped alert them that a prey is nearby, that is if that spider prefer staying in one place and laying traps. Dryads and maybe vanilla centaurs could sense vibrations on the ground or something. Other predators may instead make use of keen smell or hearing to hunt. There could be exceptions, like a dridder that has an usual potential for magic could be able to detect magic.

It would also make predators more dangerous to deal with, since what worked to counter one's hunting strategy won't work for another, and so humans that are ballsy enough to wander around in the wild will have to constantly change their tactics to evade predators.
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