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Solar Moths

Discussion in 'The Monster Monster Contest' started by Gorath, Mar 19, 2012.

  1. Gorath

    Gorath Scruffy Nerf-Herder

    Solar Moths
    A creature as majestic as it is legendary, the solar moth gets its name from its galactic migratory patterns. This ancient race of Lepidoptera have spread themselves across galaxies for millenia, building an impressive range of genetic variations on the way. Their capacity for adaptability to any environment they happen across is truly baffling, allowing significant evolutionary developments in just a few generations and an almost unparalleled ability to propagate.
    grub.jpg
    Behavior/Physiology:
    Arguably the greatest asset of the solar moth is its ability to propagate. At the end of a star's life, the solar moth will sense the incoming danger and begin placing eggs deep in the ground, excreting a fluid around them that becomes crystalline in moments. The egg clutch becomes a nigh-indestructible mass of crystals, sometimes in clusters that grow as large as buildings.​
    Should any cataclysm cause the planet to be destroyed, the eggs hurtle into the emptiness of space in a form of stasis. These eggs remain in stasis indefinitely until they reach inhabitable planets or warm masses, immune to nearly anything it comes in contact with (stars excluded). Eggs have been found floating in space that are trillions of years old and still able to hatch under the right conditions. While the chance of these eggs ever reaching inhabitable grounds is one in a million, the species still has significant numbers galaxy-wide. Supernovas are believed to be responsible for hurtling eggs to the far sides of existence, possibly even with help from wormholes. When the crystalline egg has certain atmospheric conditions met (usually warmth, moisture, and gravity) the embryo within begins to secret an enzyme that dissolves the tough crystal, allowing it to hatch.​
    A solar moth will spend a great deal of its life in the grub stage as it adapts to its surroundings. The cycle is very different from species to species, but as it grows accustomed to its diet, natural predators, and local environment, the grub will routinely enter a short cocoon stage and develop digestive and protective adaptations that help it survive in a new planetary atmosphere. Usually two cocoon stages are sufficient, but as many as five are on record. They have developed fascinating abilities during this stage; iridescence, stingers, electric discharge, armored plating, and the ability to eat and derive nourishment from rock. Most of this physiology is carried on to adult-hood. Some solar moths are truly fierce flyers in dangerous environments, often able to eject stinging projectiles, electricity, and explosive secretion at would-be attackers. After several generations in the same environment, the local species will reach an evolutionary peak and remain very similar until the next migration.​
    Very few species have ever become predatory, but it has happened before. Most variants are harmless, though can be very territorial in the migratory period.​
    The solar moth has roughly the same body size in larva and adult stage. The body rivals most mid-sized vehicles, doubling if wing-span is taken into accommodation. Most creatures will only attack one of these intimidating beasts if hunting in packs. (Some moths more closely resemble large wasps or butterflies; they are, however, mutated moths.)​
    The Solar Moth and you:
    Domestication of these creatures is possible, though much more ideal in the grub stage when it is more docile and still learning. Taming a grown moth is nearly impossible as it only wishes to reproduce and won't take to learning commands. Modifying the habitation of the grub can and does cause different evolutionary patterns into the cocoon stage. Humanoid creatures have practiced using the grubs and adults alike as mounts. The loping movement of the grub is a relaxing means of transportation, but only the truly daring would ride the great-winged moth. And don't worry about your new pet; the lifespan of the average solar moth allows it to outlive most humans!​
    Environment:
    Solar moths vary greatly from planet to planet (or planetoid). They adapt to nearly any surrounding. The strong grasping legs of the grub let it lock to nearly any surface for mobility, negating the need to adapt to gravity conditions. Even with mount in tow, they can walk straight up most surfaces. Typically they eat plants, but if found early enough can be bred to eat various rock, metal, and even other creatures.



    (Getting this in later than I had hoped! I rejected about 20 other ideas before I settled on this one. It seemed most fitting for the game and even a little endearing. It felt like a long shot at first but the more I thought about it the more I had to submit it. Didn't get as much time to develop the images as I wanted. Hope it does well :D)
     
    blind sniper, 1nk-kp0 and HombreHongo like this.
  2. DoubleDusk

    DoubleDusk Void-Bound Voyager

    Very indepth account of your creature, nice work. :)
    I love the look of some of the variants, they look really unique. I'd love to see you do up some more detailed art for the thumbnails you've done if you have time before the contest closes! Goodluck!
     

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