Chordate Dominance: Remix- Turn 3

Speculative evolution and forum games
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Prudentia
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Chordate Dominance: Remix- Turn 3

Post by Prudentia » Sun Jun 23, 2019 11:26 pm

Alright, here this is for an umpteenth time, and hopefully for good this time now that my own life is more or less in order.
The game will be more similar to the first incarnation, but with some of its own twists.

You starting animal: Syrian Hamster (Mesocricetus auratus) Why? Because they have a sixteen day gestation period.

Hamster basic info:
Length: 5-7 in
Weight: 120-125 grams
Lifespan: 2-3 years
Reproduction: Estrus every four days
Gestation: 16 days
Litter size: 8-10 is normal; but may be up to 20 young
Sexual Maturity: 4-6 weeks of age
Other notes: Crepuscular, when stressed, females may eat young. Possesses adaptations to deal with water conservation, but not as much with heat or cold.
Votes: four votes for your first turn, three votes for your 2nd turn, then 2 per turn (unless otherwise stated), all will be automatic successes. But you need to consider the ramifications of your votes when at all possible.
Turns: Turns will be completed either every week, or once everyone in a given biome has voted. A turn could be anywhere between 500,000 years to one and a half million years, so changes usually won't be huge, but they will be significant.

Biomes: Beach (rocky), Bay, Savanna, Old growth Doug-fir forests, Alpine, High desert, Kelp forests.
NPC's: yes there will be NPCs, in the process of designing them and will give players a good two or three turns to vote and become adapted to their environment before reintroducing NPCs. Ranging from decomposers to apex predators.

The island: Yes, you are on a island, around the 45th northern Parallel of the planet that you are on.

Biome details
Beach (rocky): Most of the island's coastline, mostly flat and consisting of rocks. 37 to 49 Fahrenheit during the winter, 50-69 Fahrenheit during the summer. Low to no rain fall in the summer, but the winter and spring average out to about 8 inches a month. Food Availability: some grasses, some organic debris, plenty of marine life in the shallow waters.

Bay: A large bay that nearly dries up at low tide. High tide puts most of it under two to four feet of water. Similar temperature and precipitation to the beach. Large amount of vegetation, and plentiful crustacean and annelid life burrowed in the mud.

Savanna valley: A large biome following the larger river through the island. In the summer, temperatures can range from 60-80 degree, with long periods rising into the 90s, in the winter, precipitation chills the Valley to 40-60 degrees, though prolonged stretches of 30 or even 20 degrees are possible. Precipitation falls mostly as rain during the winter months (up to 60 inches a year, and 2/3 of that in the three winter months), swelling the river. At it's peak, the river stretches almost the entire breadth of the valley, with small islands and channels forming. On average, the river is less than three feet deep at this stage. Grass is plentiful, and there are few nuts from the small groves of water loving trees, and solitary oaks. Life flourishes at the river's edge where plenty of insect life and amphibious lifeforms can be found.

Old-Growth Pine and Fir forests: In these thick forests covered in epiphytes, you could find a veritable paradise. On the slopes of the mountains, two hundred inches of rain breathe life into these temperate rainforests. Large trees with extensive branches block out much of the light before it hits the ground. This combined with the rain during every season except summer, keeps these forest to a cool 60-70 degrees during the summer, and a warm 50-60 in the winter. Pine needles are naturally everywhere, as are berries in the undergrowth and invertebrates in the soil.

Alpine: The high slopes and elevations of the local mountain range(s). Snow is present nearly all years and the winter temperatures can approach near zero for extended periods of time (20-40 Fahrenheit average), and the brief summer (50-65 degrees) is flush with grasses growing in the open areas, and a variety of small invertebrates. Some berries can be found here, as well as pine nuts for those who know how to get them.

High-desert: A large stretch of rock and shrubbery in the eastern edge of the island. This region is in the rain shadow cast by the eastern range. Leaving it devoid of most moisture, aside from several small, alkaline lakes and single, small river. In the winter, the high desert has a tendency to freeze, ranging in temperature from 0-20 degrees. This is the time of year when this desert get most of its precipitation, in the form of snow. Between five and eight feet of snow can be expected most years, Being equal to 6 to 7.2 inches of precipitation. In the summer, most of the small lakes dry up and the river shrinks to little more than a stream. Water is better found inside the leathery shrubs that coat the landscape, or in their roots. The ambient air temperature can reach over a hundred, but 80-90 is more normal. Possible food items in this environment consists of tough leathery leaves, various invertebrates, and roots/ tubers.

Kelp Forest: More info later, you need some serious adaptations to make use of this environment.
To start off, state what biome and decide on up to four votes to apply to your hamster. Other people can play in the same biome as you so be warned.

If you want or need any additional information, feel free to ask. Over the years of doing this game in different forms, I have amassed quite the library of knowledge on Golden (or Syrian) Hamster biology.

A Hook (Should you so want to read it):
From: Dr. Obr-Fulg, captain of the QCH Rit-Wol
To: Warlord, Igvi-Thy
Warlord,
The anomaly on this planet has been revealed. A long dead civilization has, through some unidentified means, trapped the planet in a temporal shield. It is unclear if the planet is ahead of us in time, of behind and trying to catch up. We found a satellite in orbit when it fired upon the planet, we have since recovered the small satellite and found it to contain frozen cryo-preserved specimens of a small warm blooded creature. Thawed specimens seem to possess no real intelligence and they have been ruled out as the creators of this satellite.
A small probe was dispatched to the surface to examine the approximate site of the collision between the unknown projectile and the planet. Only to find that the projectile was a pod containing several dozen of the furry critters, that were now roaming around. Despite the pod only being on the planet for a few minutes, the pod managed to capture over a decade's worth of footage.
I believe that, while this is the last star system in this galaxy with an uncolonized habitable planet, It would be in the Commonwealth's best interest to observe this planet further rather than attempt to seek a way to deactivate the temporal shielding. We believe that we may be able to witness millions of years of evolution within our lifetimes here.

P.S, the temporal shielding is odd, as it can fluctuate the time dilation on the planet. It appears to be random and could be that the shielding is failing, or that this is built into what device is causing the shielding in the first place. We sent two members down to the planet on two seperate occasions. Ensign Tik-tik Pripp was on the surface for over an hour, and returned merely a year older. While Dr. Trab, son of Trab, spent hardly ten minutes on the planet's surface and returned in a highly advanced mummified state.
Last edited by Prudentia on Wed Apr 01, 2020 11:56 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Black Rockfish, Sebastes melanops, ~12 inches, of the coast of Newport, Oregon.

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Guineapig004
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Re: Chordate Dominance: Remix

Post by Guineapig004 » Sun Jun 23, 2019 11:40 pm

Do we vote for adaptations that would work in the real world? Or is it more free-form? I don't have a very good understanding of biology, so I would have trouble playing this game if so.
"And fear struck the hearts of the dodos, as they realized they were being watched..."

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Prudentia
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Re: Chordate Dominance: Remix

Post by Prudentia » Mon Jun 24, 2019 5:26 am

Guineapig004 wrote:
Sun Jun 23, 2019 11:40 pm
Do we vote for adaptations that would work in the real world? Or is it more free-form? I don't have a very good understanding of biology, so I would have trouble playing this game if so.
Definitely things that work in real world. Naturally, though, if you decide to play, and you have any issues, i'll be right here with possible examples and suggestions. The other thing, is that you can keep it vague and I can provide with possible routes to go to achieve what you desire.
Black Rockfish, Sebastes melanops, ~12 inches, of the coast of Newport, Oregon.

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Re: Chordate Dominance: Remix

Post by Guineapig004 » Mon Jun 24, 2019 5:35 am

Ah, thanks!
"And fear struck the hearts of the dodos, as they realized they were being watched..."

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Re: Chordate Dominance: Remix

Post by magmacube_tr » Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:13 am

I'll jump in

I select the bay. Because its nice place for land to sea transition.

Vote 1: Webbed feet.

Vote 2: Hydrodynamic fur.

Vote 3: Increased lung capacity.

Vote: 4 Improve eyes to see underwater better.

Also do we found teams :?: Description didn't stated that.
Your everyday cube of molten rock. Also, look, a baby dragon.

░░▄▄▄░░▄▄██████▀
░▀▀██░███████▀▀
░▄█▀░███████▀
██▄▄███████████▄▄
▀█████████████▀

But thats a swa-

Shut up! This is the closest thing I could find.

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Re: Chordate Dominance: Remix

Post by BakedToast » Mon Jun 24, 2019 2:52 pm

I'm swamped in running two games, but... eh. This sounds fun.
I'll join in the Savannah.

Vote 1: Highly elongated and muscular rear legs, for jumping/fast bipedal running.

Vote 2: Expand diet to include detritus such as carcasses of larger animals; as well as cannibalizing our own dead.

Vote 3: Less fur, so we lose excess heat faster, to amplify the sweating ability.

Vote 3: Herd/Pack psyche, such that we can either scatter to confuse larger predators, or fight back if the predators are smaller.

(Do we need to name our species, or will our species name be dependent on our characteristics?)
Last edited by BakedToast on Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:24 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Burger Cat
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Re: Chordate Dominance: Remix

Post by Burger Cat » Mon Jun 24, 2019 7:37 pm

I'll join the High-desert biome:

Vote 1: Specialized hemoglobin to withstand higher amounts of CO2.

Vote 2: Stronger front limbs to dig into the ground and form burrows to escape from the desert heat.

Vote 3: A higher sense of smell to track down underground prey and tubers/roots.

Vote 4: Specialized fur built to have reduced friction while making tunnels underground.
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Prudentia
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Re: Chordate Dominance: Remix

Post by Prudentia » Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:10 pm

magmacube_tr wrote:
Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:13 am
I'll jump in

I select the bay. Because its nice place for land to sea transition.

Vote 1: Webbed feet.

Vote 2: Hydrodynamic fur.

Vote 3: Increased lung capacity.

Vote: 4 Improve eyes to see underwater better.

Also do we found teams :?: Description didn't stated that.
For vote 2 the problem that fur non-hydrodynamic is that it gets wet. You have two basic ways to achieve this. 1) you make your fur thicker, which will mean your hamster is less adaptable to warmer temperatures; or, 2) You produce a ton of oils and routinely groom yourself to spread them around, however in events of certain algal blooms, the produced surfactants will interfere with the ability of your oil to stick to your fur.
There are other means of doing this, but they will require an additional turn or two. Feel free to ask for details.

No teams, everyone has their own species. But nothing says that two people can't develop a symbiotic relationship.

BakedToast wrote:
Mon Jun 24, 2019 2:52 pm
I'm swamped in running two games, but... eh. This sounds fun.
I'll join in the Savannah.

Vote 1: Highly elongated and muscular rear legs, for jumping/fast bipedal running.

Vote 2: Capability to sweat, thus losing excess toxins from our bodies but also cooling us down while running.

Vote 3: Less fur, so we lose excess heat faster, to amplify the sweating ability.

Vote 3: Herd/Pack psyche, such that we can either scatter to confuse larger predators, or fight back if the predators are smaller.

(Do we need to name our species, or will our species name be dependent on our characteristics?)
As a mammal, you already have the capability to sweat. You just don't it as much because, well, fur. Though sweating out toxins would be a new trait.
Although, do you have a plan for the very chilly winters?

Species will named based on characteristics.

Burger Cat wrote:
Mon Jun 24, 2019 7:37 pm
I'll join the High-desert biome:

Vote 1: Specialized hemoglobin to withstand higher amounts of CO2.

Vote 2: Stronger front limbs to dig into the ground and form burrows to escape from the desert heat.

Vote 3: A higher sense of smell to track down underground prey and tubers/roots.

Vote 4: Specialized fur built to have reduced friction while making tunnels underground.
Just a note on your second vote, domestic hamsters are not burrowers, but their wild brethren are. Still, I could interpret that vote as better burrowing if so desired (I'll assume this to be the case unless you change it).
Black Rockfish, Sebastes melanops, ~12 inches, of the coast of Newport, Oregon.

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BakedToast
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Re: Chordate Dominance: Remix

Post by BakedToast » Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:16 pm

Prudentia wrote:
Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:10 pm
As a mammal, you already have the capability to sweat. You just don't it as much because, well, fur. Though sweating out toxins would be a new trait.
Although, do you have a plan for the very chilly winters?

Species will named based on characteristics.
Changing the sweat vote. Sweat already removes toxins (urea, ammonia, salts) which is what I meant to say when I said removing toxins.
I must have missed the initial mention of the Savannah winters, but as wild hamsters are burrowers, we'll still be able to survive underground for the time being in the winter, no? Default hamsters already hoard food in their burrows, so it wouldn't be a stretch for them to live in the warmer underground burrows in the winter?
"Greater than I, none. Less than I, none. For I am Chayrus. All shall be one, as I am."

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Prudentia
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Re: Chordate Dominance: Remix

Post by Prudentia » Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:25 pm

BakedToast wrote:
Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:16 pm
Prudentia wrote:
Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:10 pm
As a mammal, you already have the capability to sweat. You just don't it as much because, well, fur. Though sweating out toxins would be a new trait.
Although, do you have a plan for the very chilly winters?

Species will named based on characteristics.
I'll change the sweat vote then. Sweat already removes toxins (urea, ammonia, salts) which is what I meant to say when I said removing toxins.
I must have missed the initial mention of the Savannah winters, but as wild hamsters are burrowers, we'll still be able to survive underground for the time being in the winter, no? Default hamsters already hoard food in their burrows, so it wouldn't be a stretch for them to live in the warmer underground burrows in the winter?
Alright. Yep, and yep, but if you plan to continue on your seemingly cursorial hamster path, you will have to eventually rethink it.
Black Rockfish, Sebastes melanops, ~12 inches, of the coast of Newport, Oregon.

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