These are the GitP Conworld Forum's posts about the Sharlaq race. They should be used as easy reference material, as the original thread may contain many different subjects, being too difficult to find a specific one. In the beginning, Sharlaq were mermen (they weren't called Sharlaq, but you got the idea), so there're some mermen related posts below. Crocodilian Sharlaq only appear on post #65 by Kid Kris.
First Post (Maximum Zersk)Edit
The world is a sort of Clockpunk/Steampunk/Alchemypunk, which we dub as Gearchemypunk. It is ruled by three races. The Humans, the gnomes, and the crocadilian Sharlaq.
The Sharlaq are the traditional ones, peaceful and quiet. They work the farms and orchards all day. Yet at the same time, they are strong and steadfast in their beliefs.
"Now I don't know how to make people fight with sea people if the mer people live undersea and humans live on land. There's simply no conflict of interest, and pollution's far from a problem in the proposed era. A lot of the stuff the humans make won't work in sea, and vice versa. I think an amphibious culture may work better in this case. Some sort of aqua-based race may be effective, because the sea can support a hypothetical vibrant culture. Agriculture and construction is doable. Metal working is a little difficult in the sea though, seeing as you can't really start a fire, besides volcanic vents. The water next to these vents are hot though, so it's not like creatures not regularly living next to them can survive."
"Yes, making them amphibious might be better. Also possibly cold-blooded(reptiles)
So that they need to live near shorelines(Specific areas in the neighbourhood of volcanic vents(though not that close).
Being near the warm water, making them live in the fishing grounds of humans?"
#53 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"So, right now, we got: Clockpunk/Alchemypunk Fantasy with Steampunk elements. There are three intelligent races, humans, gnomes, and the sea-people. We have the gnomes living in higher areas or on floating islands in the sky. Human live on land, and the sea-people live in the coast, being amphibious in nature. Anyone have any objections they'd like to point out now?"
#55 (Kid Kris)Edit
"Personally, I'd see some conflict between humans and sea-people for coastal and shallow water. While some would live in the open ocean, where only large sea-faring vessels would go, but I would see the most vibrant and densely populated areas at coasts, especially coral reefs. And yes, they would have to be amphibious to some extent. If they can't at least breath air, then there's pretty much no communication at all, barring sign language or something."
"Main conflict is for the coastal zones, but also for high points if there are different human cultures warring among themselves, as those points are strategical and often natural borders. The sea race and air race seem to have a lot less friction, but we need to envision how (if somehow) they contact with each other.
I also think that the other two races also need subcultures, so instead of going the usual path of "gnomes, mermen, and fifty human races", I'd rather split them somehow with the races having a smaller number of cultures and fairly equivalent (emphasis on fairly, one race can have just two and another, say, five or six, but it's not time yet to be specific)."=====
"Here I am entering my own input, even though it may be largely ignored by the majority. I have little experience in world building or writing.
I am somewhat opposed to the sea people, mostly because a humanoid form is not well suited for life underwater. A streamlined porpoise or pinniped like form would be ideal for marine life, as evidenced by just those animals. The humanoid form is awkward underwater compared to a dolphin or seal. Giving the sea people webbed feet and hands probably isn't enough to justify incredible swimming ability.
If the sea people are like a fish or dolphin, then how do we explain tool usage? Only fins or flippers are suited for swimming (they are there mostly for stabilization, so that the animal doesn't flip upside down or something during swimming). Something similar to human arms would seriously drag and hamper movement.
We could explain the sea people's success on psychic power to manipulate objects, but only underwater as the buoyancy is greater and therefore easier to move things."
#63 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"Hmm, seems like an interesting idea. Though everyone else will have to see it.
A thing about their bodies not being made for the sea: their not fully marine, they're amphibous. I'm not sure if that makes much of a difference, but since they go on land a lot, that may change what they look like. Also, frogs have legs, and they're fine swimming.
Again, we'll have to go through this with everyone."
"Kurien, on the first paragraph: Yes! You said what I could not about water-peoples. Seconding tis about the water peoples. More to come later."
#65 (Kid Kris)Edit
"If they're amphibious, maybe something crocodilian? If we decide to make them fully aquatic, however, then dolphin-style creatures make sense. Because in Fantasyland: Giant Friggin' Brains = Psychic Powers."
"Crocodillian sounds pretty good.
Come visit our world.
We have man-crocs."
#67 (Lord Xavius)Edit
"I agree, crocodilian is excellent."
#68 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"Wait, if they were Man-crocs, wouldn't they only live around freshwater areas.
Actually, that might add some conflict over freshwater between nations."
"Hey, two subraces. Freshwater and saltwater!"
"And I must question the croc men. How anthropomorphic are they? Are they similar to Offler, just a croc head on a human body? A crocodile skull is specialized for immense bite power, a feature suited for life as a top predator. I don't know the exact intelligence of crocodiles, but obviously the brain encased in their skull does not have the capacity for sapience and sentience. A creature with a crocodile head would have a brain the size and shape of one, and therefore is not nearly as intelligent as a human.
Another feature of crocodiles is a sensitive area around a croc's mouth, similar to a fish's lateral line, detecting disturbances in the water. This sensory adaptation is used to locate prey. Would our crocodilian people have tis ability?
A crocodile mainly uses its powerful tail to swim, so logical a crocman that can also swim well should have such a tail. But, if bipedal, the pelvis would not fit the tail along with the gluteal muscles, which are essential for humans to be upright. What I'm saying is that a big tail does not work an a human."
"you say a big tale doesnt work on a human? why not? it is just something that on our planet nature hasnt evolved to yet. there could be a solution to this problem, and nature would solve it im sure. "
#75 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"Well, they would be more anthro than crocodile I guess. The tail can be solved by a different physiology than an average human. They could crouch, but would that allow them to swim?"
"Shall we make our croc-men(who really need to have a name) freshwater, saltwater or two different kinds who either live in salt or freshwater?"
#81 (Lord Xavius)Edit
"I like the two subraces idea. Perhaps they were originally a saltwater species, but some of them decided to move and later became a separate kind (loosely like the night elf/high elf situation in Warcraft, but (probably) without the whole magic war thing)."
#82 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"And yeah, the two subraces would work fine. But instead of a war splitting them apart, how about they just split into two different groups, one living in freshwater areas, one settling down on the coast?"
"And the ones living in rivers call the coastal ones "saltlings"?"
#84 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"That, or their word for Seakin or Oceankin, or something like that.
The Seakin, on the other hand, might call their river counterparts Riverkin."
"yeah, but they're friendly, I guess. Or neutral at the best. This is no war that split them, as MZ said. They can have river deltas as the trade zones."
"here is a crack at a croc-man thing, tell me what you thing in general style. the spines on his back were not the kind i wanted but they were what i found that suited, and i can just go edit the creature if you want me to tweak it a little.
heres a couple more angles. here
any thing at all you think i should change then just say, i can move the legs higher or lower on the body for example, i can change the hands or feet.
oh and about the webbed feet... ive no idea why, when i assume they would swim with a left to right motion using their tail, not an up and down."
#90 (Kid Kris)Edit
"I'd imagine Croc-men would have shorter legs, to tuck against their body when swimming. Probably more horizontal when they stand. This is just a suggestion, and nothing against your creations littlebottom, but I imagine the crocodilian peoples as being similar to kobolds, except a lot larger and bulkier, with larger tails (though of course they'd need to have something to counterbalance them, or be dragging their tails everywhere. I dunno). They'd be somewhat awkward on land, with a sort of shambling gait, but I imagine they could suddenly lunge/leap/dash/sprint forward with frightening speed, much like real crocs. In the water they'd be more graceful. Google Searching 'crocodile man' brings up this, which looks somewhat okay, though of course they'd have musculature more suited to their side-to-side swimming, instead of ridiculous pectorals and a sixpack."
#108 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"Well, guys, I think I have an idea for the crocmen. What about something similar to a mesoamerican culture?"
#113 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"Well, I think I have some ideas for the three races. Here they are:
- Gnomes: About 1 foot tall to 2 feet tall. Small, skinny bodies. Somewhat similar to hobbits, sorry, halflings in a way. Society is highly industrialized, and airborne.
- Humans: 5 ft - 6/7 ft tall. complexion varies greatly. Aggressive, energetic beings. Society is almost always in an upheaval and change it seems.
- Crocmen: Varied in size, going from 5 ft - 15 ft, all based on race. The river-kin are agricultural, traditionalistic, and peaceful, while the sea-kin are proud, honourable, and seafaring. Society is generally traditional.
With this, the size difference is huge, with a large gnome coming up to a small human's thigh, and a human coming up to a larger crocmen's knee or thigh. The gnome-crocmen size difference, well, the gnomes don't go any higher than the shins, it seems."
"The gnomes seem different enough from the humans, they're more peaceful, and have all sort of technology the humans can't grasp. Maybe the gnomes try to generally avoid humans because they know of the humans' conquest hunger, which means that the main interaction of gnomes (besides other gnomes, naturally) are crocmen. With that big of a size difference, how does this work? The avoiding of humans would make the main contacts to be either river-kin close to the river birth, or sea-kin in deep sea."
#116 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"Maybe while the humans see a huge difference in the two races, they see something similar between the two?"
#117 (Tulio d Bard)Edit
"Croc-men could use their hands to help on land-walking, like apes, monkeys or something (wouldn't forbid them to walk just in two legs), also giving additional impulse to run/dash. Mesoamerican culture seems well when talking about Riverkin. Seakin could be Egypt-like. They're kind of similar so it seems ok to me."
"Crocmen - are they more Croc or Men? are they humanoid, but with crocodile characteristics? Or do they walk on all fours? Are they amphibious?"
#122 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"The croc-men are more man than croc. They're bipedal, and amphibous."
"There should be a neo-colonialism relationship between the croc-men and the gnomes. The gnomes manufacture a lot of stuff that the croc-men likes in return for cheap raw material/food from the bounties of the ocean and the surrounding low lands. This is especially important considering the hate between the humans and the Gnomes, with the humans occupying most of the plains and the low hills which evidently is most productive. I still need to conjure up a proper explanation how the Gnomes just can't carve out some land to hold on though with their superior tech."
#175 (npc revolution)Edit
"I'd be happy to take on some politics and history. Perhaps there was an era where Croc-men or Humans were enslaved by the Gnomes?
Maybe the Gnomes literally look down on the others from up in the sky. Or some prophesy says that if a human or croc-man gets on the islands, they'll fall down.
I'm also thinking massive under-swamp cities for croc-men. Perhaps they've been drained by the Gnomes/Humans for their own use."
#176 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"Possibly, but I was thinking a more-or-less friendly relations between the gnomes and croc-men.
The croc-men cities I imagined would be Mesoamerican in design. Which Mesoamerican Culture? Not sure yet."
"The good thing is that we can reflect two of them."
#178 (Tulio d Bard)Edit
"Well, assuming that we only have crocs, humans, and gnomes in the whole world, I don't think there would be a single culture for each race. I mean, they're everywhere and culture is closely related to environment, climate, fauna, etc. So, croc-men living in the swamps are supposed to have a completely different culture from the ones living in the middle of a desert (both near a river)."
#179 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"In the middle of the desert near a river?
What I meant was, the major croc-men civilizations in the area that we are focusing on."
#180 (Tulio d Bard)Edit
"Yeah, like the Nile (though it's in the desert, the river fertilizes the land around it). I understand what you're saying, what I was trying to say is that we can have those "underswamps" in some other continent/region. And now that I think of it, AFAIR, there are/were some swampy regions in Mexico."
#181 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"Yes, but the area around the Nile is fertile is it not? It would take a little while to get to the desert from the shores.
Some swampy regions in Mexico, yes. That's where the Aztecs settled down."
#182 (Tulio d Bard)Edit
"I think Aztec-like cities would be good. It's something like this you were thinking of, isn't it? If so, what about all the sacrifices, imperialist expansions, war culture and such? Will croc-men be like this too? If they're too aggressive, gnomes and/or humans would try to push them back, I guess."
#183 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"Mayans: "What about us? It was the Aztecs who sacrificed people alot!
Incas: "We're here too, man!"
Nazcas, Olmec, Teotihuacan: "Don't forget us! God, people don't even know who we are, do they?""
"Well, maybe if you guys got off your duffs and did something, instead of lying around whining all the time, people would know who you are. Olmecs? "Ooh, we make these big stone heads that cause wrong-headed academics to hypothesize African colonization of the new world." Big freaking whoop! Get back to me when you devise a calendar system that predicts the apocalypse in my own lifetime.
Nazcas? Look, that froo-froo artistic phase, with the big stone landscape drawings? That was cute when you were in college, but here in the real world, people like sports, and that's why people like the Aztecs. The ball game, that's why. And it's not even like I can take one of those landscape drawings and put it on my wall! Stelae, now there are pieces of art that look good in your foyer. Way to specialize yourselves out of the market, losers.
Teotihuacan, I'll give credit where credit is due -- that Pyramid of the Sun is bitchin'. But what do people think of when they hear "pyramids"? That's right, Egyptians. Come up with an original architectural motif and we'll talk. Inverted domes! Yeah, that'd work. I'll have my people call your people."
#185 (Tulio d Bard)Edit
" Sorry Mayans, Incas, Nazcas, Olmecs, Teotihuacan, Toltecs, Mixtecs, Zapotecs and all. I...I didn't mean...
OK, I think I was being too hasty...
EDIT: Incas are South-American, but they're ok."
"Crocecs is such an ugly word. Not euphonious at all. How about...Aztigators? Mayadiles? Caimen? Crocmaxtli?
EDITED TO ADD: Ooh, how about Crocoatl? That combines the "Croc" with Coatl, which is Nahuatl for "serpent"."
#196 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"Not Aztigators... Maybe Mayadiles... Caimen sounds too much like the other species... Possibly Cocmaxtli...
I say Mayadiles. For now."
#197 (Tulio d Bard)Edit
"Crocec wasn't serious. Crocoalt nears perfection."
#206 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
" Oi! WAY too violent!
My idea for the croc-men was a more peaceful race."
"I apologize. It's just that you're basing a fantasy race off a family of carnivores notorious for grabbing struggling wildebeest in their savage jaws and pulling them bodily underwater to devour at their leisure. "Peaceful" is not a word I would associate with them. Forgive me if I misunderstood."
#208 (Maximum Zersk)Edit
"Er, um, yeah. Sorry 'bout not explaining that well."
|Originally Posted by Kurien A crocodile skull is specialized for immense bite power, a feature suited for life as a top predator. I don't know the exact intelligence of crocodiles, but obviously the brain encased in their skull does not have the capacity for sapience and sentience. A creature with a crocodile head would have a brain the size and shape of one, and therefore is not nearly as intelligent as a human.|
Then you just alter the proportions. The muzzle becomes smaller as the brain cavity enlarges. They lose much of their biting power, but it's still going to be much greater than a human's.
|Another feature of crocodiles is a sensitive area around a croc's mouth, similar to a fish's lateral line, detecting disturbances in the water. This sensory adaptation is used to locate prey. Would our crocodilian people have tis ability?
A crocodile mainly uses its powerful tail to swim, so logical a crocman that can also swim well should have such a tail. But, if bipedal, the pelvis would not fit the tail along with the gluteal muscles, which are essential for humans to be upright. What I'm saying is that a big tail does not work an a human.
I don't see why the croc-men wouldn't have a lateral line, it's an amphibious race.
As for the tail, one could have the crocmen be a semi-uright race, similar to uhtaraptors in that the tail has evolved to balance the creature out when upright.
Though being a semi-amphibious race, language is going to be harder than picking out biological details. If their vocal cords were similar to ours, they'd be unable to speak under-water. But if they were similar to say, dolphins, they wouldn't be able to create sounds that we can (and vice versa), making communication ridiculously difficult. As I see it, they're going to need some form of sign-language to communicate."
I dont see how gnomes, crocmen, and humans evolve from a magic race of machines,but it could make sence if they once dominated the planet then quickly adapted themselves to their envirement.
Such as forming elongated skulls and powerfull jaws to help battle the creatures of the swamp.[...]
#212 (Maximum Zersk)
The idea of the croc-men was a more agricultural and peaceful society.
Mayadiles, peaceful. Extremely strong bodies.
#215 (Tulio d Bard) Quote:
|I don't see why the croc-men wouldn't have a lateral line, it's an amphibious race.
Though being a semi-amphibious race, language is going to be harder than picking out biological details. If their vocal cords were similar to ours, they'd be unable to speak under-water. But if they were similar to say, dolphins, they wouldn't be able to create sounds that we can (and vice versa), making communication ridiculously difficult. As I see it, they're going to need some form of sign-language to communicate.
I think crocodiles are reptiles, not amphibious. It "solves" the water-talking problem too: they do not spend much time completely underwater (neighter speak submersed)