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 Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)

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jackanory
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PostSubject: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Mon 22 Dec 2008 - 9:55

I always like to try to justify to myself how certain things might conceivably work in sci-fi and fantasy settings. Obviously things like magic, daemons and spirits etc. you just have to take for granted but other things can sometimes come pretty close to having a decent answer, others leave me a bit stumped:
Question 1.
How do centaurs work?
This concerns whether centaurs, having two bodies, have two sets of organs running in parallel or just one. If they have only one set does it sit in the horse's half or the man's? Or do they extend down the whole length of the two bodies? Presumably they'd need the whole length either as one set or in two halves just to have enough lung capacity, a sizable enough heart, long enough guts etc. My biggest gripe with the centaur is the size of the trachea (windpipe), I don't think that it would have a wide enough diameter to allow enough air to enter the lungs at speed, especially when running at full pelt or undertaking other vigorous activities like crushing puny manbeasts.

Discuss

At the moment I can't remember question 2 but I will come back here when I remember it!

Also feel free to post any other philosophical questions related to Warhammer or just fantasy in general...
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Eliazar
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PostSubject: Re: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Mon 22 Dec 2008 - 10:02

I am always wondering how centaurs or creatures with wings on their back evolved, as usually, all animals I know have only four extremities, so it would be either wings or arms for a vampire, for example.

Well, in Warhammer, you have Chaos so there's extra arms growing all over the place, but in more "realistic" fantasy settings, it's quite an unrealistic element.
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DeafNala
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PostSubject: Re: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Mon 22 Dec 2008 - 10:45

jackanory wrote:
At the moment I can't remember question 2 but I will come back here when I remember it!

lol! You, my friend, ARE definitely a kindred spirit. You have my condolences. Suspect

While Fantasy by definition is a suspension of disbelief, I like things to make some sense; a bit of plausibility goes a long way towards making a Fantasy setting more satisfying. With the Centaur/Centigor, it was the digestive system I had to work out in what passes for my mind. With this one I figure there would be two stomachs connected by the appropriate digestive mechanisms;i.e, intestines, liver, gallbladder, et all. This would allow the creature which is part omnivore, part herbivore to deal with ingested matter that might be inappropiate for the species.

Two sets of Lungs might also be a necessity if only for the greater oxygen demands of a creature with higher mental functions. I'm not sure how the trachea of a horse compares size-wise to that of a man, but,on a Centaur, I would imagine it should be at leat as large as the largest of the two species, which might mean a pretty bull necked critter. Suspect

We can blame ALL this on some Greek dude who couldn't quite grasp the idea of a man riding a horse. Suspect
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Chad
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PostSubject: Re: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Mon 22 Dec 2008 - 11:04

I always imagined them haing a bovine-like arrangement: with 2-4 stomachs allowing them to eat herbs, grass and so forth.
Alternatively: the human half would only digest, and the horse half would oxygenate. This would work - scale wise.
Another one is: do orcs get back-pain from walking like that? Ogres, however, have the best anatomy: loads of really tough muscle grouped around a stomach so they can chew with their stomachs! (And can chew for hours while talking, eating more, biting gnoblar ears, etc.)
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jackanory
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PostSubject: Re: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Mon 22 Dec 2008 - 12:31

Eliazar that's a good one, all real world vertebrates are tetrapods meaning literally four feet so yeah you never get any vertebrates with more than four limbs. You could argue that in these mythical settings there are other animals with differing evolutionary paths but it'd have to go right back to before the common evolutionary ancestor between us and fish (and also happen upon the same features as its equivalent just by chance) not very likely!
With the vampyr question I like the heresy miniatures vision:
except the long parts that stabilise the wing should all come from the hand, in a bat they're all adapted fingers with just a couple of actual fingers to grab onto things with.
Deaf I think that horses have the wider trachea by far so yeah you'd have to have a centaur with a really thick neck! I just had an idea, maybe you could have a centaur with some sort of blowhole supplying the lungs separately, he'd never choke on food, or more importantly booze, that way as well.
Chad I think that, according to the fluff in the Warhammer roleplay books, all of the major ogre organs are situated more towards the belly region which is one of the reasons they're so damn hard to kill! With orcs I'd say that as that's their natural way of standing they probably have all sorts of stabilizing muscles, tendons and ligaments to stop back pain (Though who knows? Maybe that's why they're always so damn pissed off!)
DeafNala wrote:

We can blame ALL this on some Greek dude who couldn't quite grasp the idea of a man riding a horse. Suspect
I'll be raising a drink to him tonight!
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Chad
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PostSubject: Re: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Mon 22 Dec 2008 - 13:36

Humans have the remains of fins attached to our spines. It would have been possible for these to evolve into a secand set of shoulderblades (supporting arms, wings, whatnot).
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Eliazar
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PostSubject: Re: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Mon 22 Dec 2008 - 14:10

jackanory, this does indeed look almost like a vampire which could have evolved from a human.

Here is GW's try at that:


They skipped the whole issue with the fingers, apparently.

I remember a very old vampire who only had wings instead of arms, so he would be the most realistic one.

Oh, and the Vargulf is quite good:
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jackanory
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PostSubject: Re: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Mon 22 Dec 2008 - 16:43

Yeah I did know about the GW vampire but I posted the heresy one because it's better! I'd forgotten about the vargulf though, one of their better minis I reckon! (It's basically just a big bat though isn't it?)
Chad I've never heard of that fins thing before, our hands are homologous with dolphins' fins, that might be what you're talking about. I dunno you may very well be right but I've never heard of it before.
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PostSubject: Re: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Mon 22 Dec 2008 - 17:51

What reminds me of a real vampire, is the creatures in the original BeastMaster movie. At the final battle they swoop down and cover the enemy barbarians with thier wing/arms and suck everything out of them, till they are a blog of goo.
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PostSubject: Re: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Wed 24 Dec 2008 - 17:09

@ the centaur question:

If looked at centaur, it has like 80% body of a horse.

It's like a headless horse with half a man sown on top.

So here's what i think:

All the organs are exactly like a horse, maybe a bit bigger lungs (i've seen some pics on the net explaining anatomy of horse)

With the minor difference, that the organs are adapted to be a omnivore.

Shouldn't be so hard. and why should there be organs in the part of man? if there weren't he would be withstandable to much damage (as in warhammer)

Soo that's my view bounce
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Chad
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PostSubject: Re: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Thu 25 Dec 2008 - 5:21

And his entire torso would be muscle! Kick butt, Dobbin!
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PostSubject: Re: Questions to ponder (DeafNala you'll like this!)   Today at 9:01

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