Discussion in 'Fantasy' started by Darkstar, Jan 3, 2011.
Does anyone have any tips/ideas for how to create unique fantasy races, and creatures.
Ignore human anatomy for races and creatures. It's fantasy--give it three legs with spider-legs for feet and a body made of gel. As long as you don't find yourself making subtle changes to humans I think you'll find your creations a bit more interesting and unique.
ETA: Naiyn makes a good point which I did not include: make it whatever you like but make it believable. Any physical attribute should be able to be described in a way that makes sense for your setting and story.
When outling I fill this out but for a new race this might help:
How long do they live:
Are they smart:
See what I mean?
Believability is the key. What environment do these races live in? what makes them well suited to live there? What survival advantages do they have in that environment? Do they have horns? If so, why? Do they have thick skin, or some weird combination of scales and fur? Whatever features they have, ask why they have them.
If you make them weird just for the sake of making them wierd, you're not going to have a very realistic creature/thing/being.
And last, but certainly no least, make sure they have a real purpose for being in your story. If they're just background fluff and don't have any meaningful interaction with the storyline, then there's no reason to include them.
How is their world view different from humans?
How does it effect their culture?
How does it effect their inter-personal relations?
How does it effect their relations with other races?
Use your imagination coupled with the world the creatures would inhabit.
Well mine are all humanlike - however they all developed out of what I needed them to do to tell my story.
I needed an immortal character so I have four races of people that represent the elements. And are immortal until they reproduce and they begin to die it is a dominant gene.
I have races that are part bird/part immortal etc.
They all fit because I made them up to tell a specific story.
Michael Moorcock created a variety of non-monsters who would likely be monsterous to us if we met them.
They were humanoid creatures who were more beautiful and graceful than humans in every way, thus making humans seem like "crippled monkeys" by comparison. I think fight such beings is a lot more interesting than attacking a giant spider, because the spider obviously needs to die. It would be more difficult to kill a bunch of super models.
Plus, it would be cool to flip the usual convension where the MC and company are beautiful and awesome.
-well,however they are created should reflect where they live and also,give some points on their biology.
-for example,my story has vampires;but they are not undead,their body temperature is only between 80 and 90 degrees,they have dark matter(the stuff in black holes) in their blood stream and bodies,and in their dna so they can phase through objects and form into shadowy like substances.their eyes glow in the dark and so do their tears as a result of the dark matter,certain things are lighter to counter act it.some have retractable wings on their head that serve the purpous of stimulating blood flow so as to enhance their powers,hollow ,but strong bones makes them jump higher and move faster than we do.
this is a result of having to hunt large creatures,living in caves,woods and dark places for centuries and the fact that the black hole near their home planet was expelling dark matter which fell to their planet.lack of sunlight made their blood deficient ,and need to drink blood or else they'd get tired ,and weak.
see?that was a physical description with biology.Don't make them just 'look cool',let their appearances and things all have a reason,give extra body parts (like kitty ears!XD) a function.
now,with that,make sure you show interactions and habits of the creatures (ex:my vamps sniff people in public,elves twitch their ears).
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