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Author Topic: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign  (Read 1055 times)

Pat

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #30 on: April 30, 2021, 08:40:01 AM »
As for out dated, guess what?  someone somewhere is going to find another rock somewhere else and make the current theory outdated.   We still do not know what dinosaurs actually looked like, only guesses and theories.
That's true to some degree, and it's important to remember what we don't know. That's one reason why all the highly speculative paleoart in recent years is valuable, because is shows a broader ranger of what's possible. For many decades, dinosaurs were depicted in very similar ways, which was misleading because the uniformity across all those different artists implied that we were sure that's what they looked like, which was simply false.

But you can also take it too far, because we've learned a lot about what dinosaurs look like. And it's not just skeletal anatomy based on fossilized bones, but things like skin impressions, preserved filaments or feathers, and even the color(!) of a few species. There are many areas of uncertainty, but others that are settled with a high degree of certainty, and the later category has increased dramatically in the last half a century.

Greywolf76

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #31 on: April 30, 2021, 09:11:24 AM »
Greetings!

Dinosaurs often feature prominently in GONZO campaigns, with little attention paid to verisimilitude and all that. However, assuming you are running a standard campaign, with only flavorings of GONZO added into such in a limited degree, what are some of the implications that you might consider with Dinosaurs being not necessarily globally dominant, but still regionally prominent? Mixing with more animals and mammals, and also the effects on human societies, as well as communities of humanoids?

Semper Fidelis,

SHARK

Hi, Shark.

Most probably I'd restrict dinosaurs to some geographically isolated region, like and island or peninsula.

In my homebrew AD&D 2E campaign I had a small archipelago with a portal to a "land that time forgot" parallel dimension, where I put all my dinosaurs, saurians and neanderthals. The portal was permanent, so occasionally some huge "thunderous beast" came through to the campaign world.

oggsmash

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #32 on: April 30, 2021, 09:15:18 AM »
As for out dated, guess what?  someone somewhere is going to find another rock somewhere else and make the current theory outdated.   We still do not know what dinosaurs actually looked like, only guesses and theories.
That's true to some degree, and it's important to remember what we don't know. That's one reason why all the highly speculative paleoart in recent years is valuable, because is shows a broader ranger of what's possible. For many decades, dinosaurs were depicted in very similar ways, which was misleading because the uniformity across all those different artists implied that we were sure that's what they looked like, which was simply false.

But you can also take it too far, because we've learned a lot about what dinosaurs look like. And it's not just skeletal anatomy based on fossilized bones, but things like skin impressions, preserved filaments or feathers, and even the color(!) of a few species. There are many areas of uncertainty, but others that are settled with a high degree of certainty, and the later category has increased dramatically in the last half a century.

  Still a great deal of uncertainty, and most ideas are from partial skeletons.  I hope cloning tech  will progress to just re creating a dino.  Or the chinese can reveal the dino they already cloned, and we can just settle the uncertainty.

GeekyBugle

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #33 on: April 30, 2021, 12:13:01 PM »
As for out dated, guess what?  someone somewhere is going to find another rock somewhere else and make the current theory outdated.   We still do not know what dinosaurs actually looked like, only guesses and theories.
That's true to some degree, and it's important to remember what we don't know. That's one reason why all the highly speculative paleoart in recent years is valuable, because is shows a broader ranger of what's possible. For many decades, dinosaurs were depicted in very similar ways, which was misleading because the uniformity across all those different artists implied that we were sure that's what they looked like, which was simply false.

But you can also take it too far, because we've learned a lot about what dinosaurs look like. And it's not just skeletal anatomy based on fossilized bones, but things like skin impressions, preserved filaments or feathers, and even the color(!) of a few species. There are many areas of uncertainty, but others that are settled with a high degree of certainty, and the later category has increased dramatically in the last half a century.

  Still a great deal of uncertainty, and most ideas are from partial skeletons.  I hope cloning tech  will progress to just re creating a dino.  Or the chinese can reveal the dino they already cloned, and we can just settle the uncertainty.

I don't relish raining in your parade, but cloning tech is already where we could IF we had any ADN from Dinos, we don't and we never will because it's destroyed after some time and can't be recreated.

Closest you could get is the guy that wants to make a dinochicken (because birds ARE one type of dinosaurs), and that still wouldn't be a dino because you can't devolve to a previous state.
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oggsmash

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #34 on: April 30, 2021, 04:05:36 PM »
As for out dated, guess what?  someone somewhere is going to find another rock somewhere else and make the current theory outdated.   We still do not know what dinosaurs actually looked like, only guesses and theories.
That's true to some degree, and it's important to remember what we don't know. That's one reason why all the highly speculative paleoart in recent years is valuable, because is shows a broader ranger of what's possible. For many decades, dinosaurs were depicted in very similar ways, which was misleading because the uniformity across all those different artists implied that we were sure that's what they looked like, which was simply false.

But you can also take it too far, because we've learned a lot about what dinosaurs look like. And it's not just skeletal anatomy based on fossilized bones, but things like skin impressions, preserved filaments or feathers, and even the color(!) of a few species. There are many areas of uncertainty, but others that are settled with a high degree of certainty, and the later category has increased dramatically in the last half a century.

  Still a great deal of uncertainty, and most ideas are from partial skeletons.  I hope cloning tech  will progress to just re creating a dino.  Or the chinese can reveal the dino they already cloned, and we can just settle the uncertainty.

I don't relish raining in your parade, but cloning tech is already where we could IF we had any ADN from Dinos, we don't and we never will because it's destroyed after some time and can't be recreated.

Closest you could get is the guy that wants to make a dinochicken (because birds ARE one type of dinosaurs), and that still wouldn't be a dino because you can't devolve to a previous state.

  Cloning tech will progress to a point you will not need DNA to clone an animal. 

GeekyBugle

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #35 on: April 30, 2021, 04:26:12 PM »
As for out dated, guess what?  someone somewhere is going to find another rock somewhere else and make the current theory outdated.   We still do not know what dinosaurs actually looked like, only guesses and theories.
That's true to some degree, and it's important to remember what we don't know. That's one reason why all the highly speculative paleoart in recent years is valuable, because is shows a broader ranger of what's possible. For many decades, dinosaurs were depicted in very similar ways, which was misleading because the uniformity across all those different artists implied that we were sure that's what they looked like, which was simply false.

But you can also take it too far, because we've learned a lot about what dinosaurs look like. And it's not just skeletal anatomy based on fossilized bones, but things like skin impressions, preserved filaments or feathers, and even the color(!) of a few species. There are many areas of uncertainty, but others that are settled with a high degree of certainty, and the later category has increased dramatically in the last half a century.

  Still a great deal of uncertainty, and most ideas are from partial skeletons.  I hope cloning tech  will progress to just re creating a dino.  Or the chinese can reveal the dino they already cloned, and we can just settle the uncertainty.

I don't relish raining in your parade, but cloning tech is already where we could IF we had any ADN from Dinos, we don't and we never will because it's destroyed after some time and can't be recreated.

Closest you could get is the guy that wants to make a dinochicken (because birds ARE one type of dinosaurs), and that still wouldn't be a dino because you can't devolve to a previous state.

  Cloning tech will progress to a point you will not need DNA to clone an animal.

LOL, no it won't. But I will indulge you. How exactly will that magical tech clone a chicken without the chicken's ADN?
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jhkim

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #36 on: April 30, 2021, 04:39:04 PM »
Cloning tech will progress to a point you will not need DNA to clone an animal.

LOL, no it won't. But I will indulge you. How exactly will that magical tech clone a chicken without the chicken's ADN?

I'm not supporting oggsmash's phrasing, but there will come a point when we can exactly simulate what a skeletal structure given DNA will grow into. At that point, we can reconstruct by using fragmentary DNA from dinosaur descendants and the fossil record. i.e. "Based on the fossils, we know the DNA would have to be approximately blah."

But the information would still be incomplete, so it wouldn't be exact. And I would call this "genetic reconstruction" rather than "cloning".

GeekyBugle

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #37 on: April 30, 2021, 05:07:08 PM »
Cloning tech will progress to a point you will not need DNA to clone an animal.

LOL, no it won't. But I will indulge you. How exactly will that magical tech clone a chicken without the chicken's ADN?

I'm not supporting oggsmash's phrasing, but there will come a point when we can exactly simulate what a skeletal structure given DNA will grow into. At that point, we can reconstruct by using fragmentary DNA from dinosaur descendants and the fossil record. i.e. "Based on the fossils, we know the DNA would have to be approximately blah."

But the information would still be incomplete, so it wouldn't be exact. And I would call this "genetic reconstruction" rather than "cloning".

So what I mentioned before, what the dinochicken guy wants to do with a chicken?

That's not cloning, and the result, even if it looked kinda like an avian dinosaur it wouldn't be one.

And I bet we will not be able to just say this kind of part of the DNA modified so would produce those legs. It would involve lots of trial and error.

Good luck getting the ecofascists letting you do it.
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SHARK

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #38 on: April 30, 2021, 05:21:11 PM »
Greetings!

Dinosaurs often feature prominently in GONZO campaigns, with little attention paid to verisimilitude and all that. However, assuming you are running a standard campaign, with only flavorings of GONZO added into such in a limited degree, what are some of the implications that you might consider with Dinosaurs being not necessarily globally dominant, but still regionally prominent? Mixing with more animals and mammals, and also the effects on human societies, as well as communities of humanoids?

Semper Fidelis,

SHARK

Hi, Shark.

Most probably I'd restrict dinosaurs to some geographically isolated region, like and island or peninsula.

In my homebrew AD&D 2E campaign I had a small archipelago with a portal to a "land that time forgot" parallel dimension, where I put all my dinosaurs, saurians and neanderthals. The portal was permanent, so occasionally some huge "thunderous beast" came through to the campaign world.

Greetings!

Hey there, Greywolf! Cool! Do you use many different varieties of dinosaurs, or just a few?

Semper Fidelis,

SHARK
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SHARK

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #39 on: April 30, 2021, 05:43:29 PM »
Greetings!

I have some regions within my world, as well as several continents, where all kinds of strange plants and geography hold sway. Enormous marshes, great inland seas, and vast rivers. The rivers and marshes are full of different kinds of fish and amphibians, varying in size and temperament. Giant dragonflies hovering about, colonies of giant ants; aggressive, carnivorous beetles that are as large as a mastiff or Irish Wolf Hound. Lakes full of amphibious reptiles, savage monstrosities that lurk along the dense reeds and grasses of the riverbanks, waiting for prey to cross their path. Huge ferns growing here and there. Large, leafy palmed plants and trees growing in vibrant splendor.

Some human communities have domesticated various dinosaurs for use in agriculture and also as work beasts. Some of the swift, aggressive breeds of dinosaurs have been trained as mounts, and are often used in warfare. Dinosaurs and similar animals have also contributed to diet and cuisine, providing various kinds of meat and eggs. It's pretty interesting to have different kinds of brightly coloured dinosaur hide armour, as well as shields, crafted from inlays of Stegasaur plates or what have you.

I think that exploring different kinds of magical spells, as well as magic items, and unusual mystical items and artifacts inspired by dinosaurs and the like can be very inspiring, and distinctive.

Semper Fidelis,

SHARK
"It is the Marine Corps that will strip away the façade so easily confused with self. It is the Corps that will offer the pain needed to buy the truth. And at last, each will own the privilege of looking inside himself  to discover what truly resides there. Comfort is an illusion. A false security bred from familiar things and familiar ways. It narrows the mind. Weakens the body. And robs the soul of spirit and determination. Comfort is neither welcome nor tolerated here."

"Courage is not the absence of fear, but is doing what you have to, in spite of the fear."
"Let Death and Fire Be Their Portion!"
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Mishihari

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #40 on: April 30, 2021, 11:06:27 PM »
And trying to control the dinosaurs by killing off the big ones could make it worse, by inducing a mesopredator release, which is essentially a feeding frenzy among the smaller predators trying to become the next top dog. Think of a big daddy Tyrannosaurus killed off by PCs. But he was suppressing all his competitors, across a vast hunting ground. In his absence, a horde of mid-sized tyrannosaurs pop up and start to grow rapidly, and the need for food drives them all a bit crazy, stripping the lands around them of anything resembling prey, until one of them finally kills off all its competitors and takes the old giant's place. But until that happens, things will be dangerous and messy.

Larry Niven wrote a pretty good book based on this premise:  The Legacy of Heorot.

Mishihari

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #41 on: April 30, 2021, 11:12:33 PM »
Having had a good deal of interest in Dinosaurs as a kid, the amount of change that has gone on regarding Dino biology (were reptiles, now likely their own thing -  warm blooded and closer to bird related) and ecological theories (the egg eating mammal is an old one) and disaster theories (the meteor taking them out is "new" in that is did not exist 40 years ago), climate changes (cold killed them, then they were warm blooded) etc.  What I have seen in the 42 years of taking an interest, is the scientist who has the most friends seems to get his theories to be "accepted" the most commonly, and given how scant actual evidence is for what went on hundreds of millions of years ago, the ever changing nature is acceptable.  Another big trend is there are many dinosaurs that seem to be almost identical have different names based on who found this skeleton or that one. Which also makes sense, because we forget dinosaurs that look almost alike separated by 500, 000 years may well be a different species.  A tiger and a Lion skeleton look almost identical, but the animals do not look all that much alike, and without better data we have a hard time figuring out all that much about the biology of dinosaurs.  I also think pondering dinosaurs in a fantasy world versus right now is sort of a moot point. As mentioned in a world dragons fly and giants are in caves, dinosaurs are no sort of reach to imagine stomping about in.   Modern day without a place to reach a critical mass they get shot with .50 cals or starve chasing mountain goats.  Even if they were everywhere and reproduced at a geometric rate, people with guns would eliminate any real threat to humanity quickly.

Dinos were warm blooded?  Since when has that been a thing?  With the constant churn of "the latest theory" I tend to give the latest no more credence than the many others of the recent past.  The current best theory will probably be superseded in a month, after all.  It seems like we just don't know and aren't ever really going to know.  So for fiction, I say take your pick of whatever theory you want.

GeekyBugle

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #42 on: April 30, 2021, 11:14:55 PM »
Having had a good deal of interest in Dinosaurs as a kid, the amount of change that has gone on regarding Dino biology (were reptiles, now likely their own thing -  warm blooded and closer to bird related) and ecological theories (the egg eating mammal is an old one) and disaster theories (the meteor taking them out is "new" in that is did not exist 40 years ago), climate changes (cold killed them, then they were warm blooded) etc.  What I have seen in the 42 years of taking an interest, is the scientist who has the most friends seems to get his theories to be "accepted" the most commonly, and given how scant actual evidence is for what went on hundreds of millions of years ago, the ever changing nature is acceptable.  Another big trend is there are many dinosaurs that seem to be almost identical have different names based on who found this skeleton or that one. Which also makes sense, because we forget dinosaurs that look almost alike separated by 500, 000 years may well be a different species.  A tiger and a Lion skeleton look almost identical, but the animals do not look all that much alike, and without better data we have a hard time figuring out all that much about the biology of dinosaurs.  I also think pondering dinosaurs in a fantasy world versus right now is sort of a moot point. As mentioned in a world dragons fly and giants are in caves, dinosaurs are no sort of reach to imagine stomping about in.   Modern day without a place to reach a critical mass they get shot with .50 cals or starve chasing mountain goats.  Even if they were everywhere and reproduced at a geometric rate, people with guns would eliminate any real threat to humanity quickly.

Dinos were warm blooded?  Since when has that been a thing?  With the constant churn of "the latest theory" I tend to give the latest no more credence than the many others of the recent past.  The current best theory will probably be superseded in a month, after all.  It seems like we just don't know and aren't ever really going to know.  So for fiction, I say take your pick of whatever theory you want.

Some most certainly were, especially the ones that would evolve into birds. Which is why they needed feathers, to help regulate their body temp.
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Jam The MF

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #43 on: May 01, 2021, 02:08:29 AM »
Crocodiles and Alligators are Dinosaurs, for all the world to ponder.  Just imagine them growing bigger, with longer legs; and some walking upright.  Whallah!!!  Dinosaurs.
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Jam The MF

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Re: The Implications of Embracing Dinosaurs in the Campaign
« Reply #44 on: May 01, 2021, 02:12:58 AM »
Velociraptors could devastate a food chain.  They'd put the big cats to shame, I imagine.
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