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HolyBladeSeraph

Transformations?

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Hello out there!

 

A little backstory before my question.

 

One of my characters Byakko'a ( Keeper of the Moon Miqo'te) has had a real troubled past, stemming from the fact that he watched his own two daughters being burnt alive. Though usually it is a matriarchal society, he was forced to take lead over the village after his mother died because no one was as well trusted, or worthy of protecting the families within the tribe. Bya found 'mate' of sorts and that was when the fire came and burnt the entire tribe to the ground.

 

His father was nonexistent through this entire life. However, I'd like to try something here and bear with me: I'd like Bya to somehow and unwillingly inherent the ability to shift or transform into a white tiger of sorts. I'm not sure how hard this would break lore or not, it's really just an inquiry if anything.

 

My plan would be that in some fashion he learns of his fathers existence and finds out that it was him who destroyed the tribe those years ago and killed his children. At the confrontation, his father reveals a big secret that he can shift his body into a large tiger. The eldest male of blood kin would be the only one that it develops into, which is why Bya has not seen or experienced it himself. He also realizes his father is crazed and malicious and kills him to avenge the family he lost. Doing so, would mark him as the next successor of the ability.

 

So my questions:

 

1.) Would this ability be even plausible?

 

2.) There needs to be a high risk/drawback to this. It's a powerful transformation and there for needs a powerful drawback to invoking it. I played with the idea that it would be like a drug when he shifted, but the more he used it, the longer it took him to phase back into his regular miqo'te form. Eventually leading up to where he would stay a tiger forever.

 

3.) The father story is changabe. What are your thoughts on such?

 

Let me be clear. This is not some way of making a suedo werewolf thing. This would be a tribal transformation with clear setbacks and disadvantages. Any help would be awesome! Thanks!

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I’m basically comatose at the keyboard right now (it’s about bedtime) but wanted to touch on this subject a little bit before I headed off.

 

Personally, I think it’s a very viable concept and shares a few similarities to my character Khaz’s overall concept. Throughout Eorzea there’s been evidence of transformations of varying kinds. We see some connected to Primals as is the case with Lady Iceheart, we’ve also seen numerous transformations in relation to voidsent as well. Heretics have been shown to assume the form of aevis, etc. I think your idea of keeping this balanced by way of some hefty drawbacks is also rather fair, too.

 

I’m definitely no expert on lore but do my research where I can. I’m sure you’ll get more definitive responses from more learned and experienced writers, but there’re my two-bits!

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I'm also pretty tired but I'm struggling to think of a power source for the transformation, that's the thing. The examples given above all have world-altering consequences - primals kill a little bit of Hydaelyn every time they're summoned, voidsent generally don't want to leave a vessel once they've inhabited it, and heretics can only transform into aevis because they carry the blood of a long-dead Great Wyrm in their veins.

 

Some kind of... manifestation of shaped aether, almost like a carbuncle, but tiger-shaped, and also you're inside it??

 

The hereditary thing... maybe it is voidsent-related, to do with an ancient pact of some sort??

 

I'm sure there's ideas to play with but I'm sleepy and failing to come up with anything that's quite like what's been seen in lore before that isn't, like... MSQ-worthy in terms of its wider consequences beyond the individual. x_x

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Personally, I don't think most elements of the story are plausible, for a few reasons.

 

1) Keepers of the Moon are a matriarchal society, as you mentioned. That being said, I'm not sure why they'd choose a male as their leader. Even if there were no spectacular female candidates, I imagine they'd still be just as trusted or at least preferable to any male alternatives. It's not impossible, as we see exceptions with the Coeurlclaw tribe, but iirc that's a case of a male Keeper striking off on his own and taking in misfit Keeper women who are most likely disillusioned by their own clans (and being somewhat held hostage).

 

2) There's no precedent for the races of man shapeshifting (barring Primals and dragons, and Void related things which are different situations). There's also, of course, therefore no precedent for this to be any sort of inherited, ritualistic thing (an ability that is passed on after its current host's death) and I'm not sure why it would function that way.

 

3) Saying that if he shapeshifts too much he'll eventually "get stuck" is fine, but it's not much of a trade off for the strength his abilities could grant him. Downsides that are somewhat abstract (we don't know how much "too much" is) and/or far off in the future (we also don't know how long it will be and how much shapeshifting it will take for this to ever catch up with him) don't do well in balancing anything, as they don't tend to affect the person's RP in this current moment and potentially may never crop up in the person's RP at all. It's an okay flavor tidbit for your character, but if your character decides to turn into a tiger and maul someone, it's not a weakness that actually benefits the other player/character in anyway nor one that inhibits your character in that moment. A better downside would perhaps be the transformation being physically painful and taking a notable amount of time, thus leaving him vulnerable and open to attack while shapeshifting.

 

4) The bit about his father is honestly probably the least unlikely part. Granted, from what was outlined in the OP, we don't have any explanation given for his actions and behavior, which could perhaps raise some eyebrows about why he'd take such dramatic action against his own son for seemingly no reason.

 

As always, you should of course role-play whatever appeals to you, but if you're looking for lore compliance, I don't think this concept fits.

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Which anime is that where the boy discovers he can shapeshift in a white tiger already? Bungou Stray Dogs or something? Is that supposed to be similar here?

 

There is nothing in lore right now that supports shapeshifting as far as I know, except this handful of things:

 

1) Transforming into a dragon. This is specifically tied to ishgardians whose ancestors share a bit of the blood of Great Wyrms. If they drink dragon blood, they can transform into dragons more or less permanently as far as I'm aware.

 

2) Transforming into a voidsent. This is where you get tainted by Voidsent shit and your flesh gets slowly corrupted to the point of transforming yourself into one of them. You slowly lose your mind and your aether slowly dries and twists into a husk driven by its lust for aether. This is different from being possessed by a voidsent without a physical form that is using your body as its vessel.

 

3) Turning into a primal avatar, like Ysaile or Thordan for example. This is totally reversible, especially when you run out of crystals, as you may know that primals must eat a constant, colossal amount of crystals to sustain themselves or else they wither. The more powerful they are, the more colossal that amount is. Alternatively, they can also feed directly from the planet aether (cf Alexander), or artificial aetherochemical generators/tanks (xf Bahamut and the Warring Triad).

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Lore aside, I think one difficulty would be how you could represent this in the game other than getting everyone to join in the illusion and treat you as some big cat. That would involve a lot of explaining and many are likely to not accept it as the reality and have their characters just see a person, or even just walk away. So you are probably limited to a small group for this.

 

You could, I suppose, play a mount, not many look like a white tiger but it could be better than nothing. Maybe change the concept from white tiger to an actual animal represented in the mounts?

 

Another way would be to just have him beef-up and take on more big cat characteristics, paws/claws, fur, mane etc.. Or just have the tiger as some image/aspect that shimmers around him with Aether/Energy. Then you could maybe use items to change the way the toon looks? There is a lion's head helm for example.

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1.) Would this ability be even plausible? 

Transforming via magic is already a huge part off the game lore whether this is transforming though faith/crystals or being cursed by toad, mini and morph, this shows that it is physically possible to transform on some scale. They is something I would point out, are blue mage's. If my memory remembers right. Blue Magic is a collection off magic that is enquired by drawing on the traits off an enemy. We do not know if FF XIV will operate in the same manner when it comes to Blue Mages however, looking back at the prior games in the series the skills were obtained though items, eating, being used on you and even studied upon combat. Granted still this wouldn't allow you to transform however it would allow you to use your attacks so to speak with an Aetherial Form most likely. If you played in Hevensward Content the best examples is the move for Dragoon in which causes a Aether Dragoon around the Dragoon. They is a druid class that exists in the series lore however to my knowledge they lacked the ability to transform and if I recall are basically an Geomancer, however don't quote me on that.

 

2.) There needs to be a high risk/drawback to this. It's a powerful transformation and there for needs a powerful drawback to invoking it. I played with the idea that it would be like a drug when he shifted, but the more he used it, the longer it took him to phase back into his regular miqo'te form. Eventually leading up to where he would stay a tiger forever.

All magic's come with some cost, you could say that using the spells take an emotional toll that will cause your miqo'te to mimic the personality traits off the animal he is using. For an example Tiger's are feral and will have a feral nature, a bear will have a defence aggressive nature. Granted this is not transforming. Copying the lore used in WoW which seems to be the standardised rule off transforming which is normally used in movies and games. If you stay transformed for too long then slowly you will forget you are human and become animal, you will also begin to take on the same characteristic traits off that animal while you are in a state of transformation. 

 

3.) The father story is changabe. What are your thoughts on such?

If you go off the risk/drawbacks I said in 2) then using this type of magic would take a mental toll on your body which could of pushed the father over the edge. However if you went the Blue Magic route, it would not be an bloodline trait more so a legacy teaching, meaning the art was taught and passed down though the clan history, it is possible however to have the magic teaching passed down to heir to heir. 

 

Again these answers are based off the series off Final Fantasy as a whole. For whether or not this is possible would decide on SE when and if they bring out Blue Mages or even a Druid Class. But yes transformation is possible and in the lore however if you will have control off the transformation and being able to revert to your Miqo'te that is another matter.

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1) First of all, shape-shifting is not entirely without precedent in Eorzea, though it is most commonly limited to voidsent Imps there are a few rare instances where the races of man have reportedly demonstrated the ability. It is unclear, however, if their shape-shifting powers are legitimate or sailor talk.

 

Bear in mind that imps are skilled at shapeshifting shams.

Rumor has that well-known songstress Parazuzu' date=' often seen performing in central Limsa Lominsa's Octant, is actually a lycanthropic asassin hired by the international crime syndicate Zer'maat Five to eliminate a high-ranking official in the Knights of the Barracuda. Azeyma's Shields' W'mhelgo Hena has been tracking Palemoon's movements for the past fortnight and believes she may have discovered a pattern. Join the Isleguard and assist her in capturing the shapeshifter before she can carry out her bloody mission.[/quote']

According to intelligence gathered by agents of The Horn and Hand' date=' international crime syndicate Zer'maat Five has hired the services of one "Xha Viqqoh the Nibbler" to infiltrate the upper levels of The Mizzenmast and assassinate the Admiral where she sleeps. Considering the number of guards on duty at the tower, this would normally be an impossible task. The Nibbler is rumored, however, to be a formidable mage with the ability to change her appearance into that of a tiny rat. Fortunately, the whereabouts of the shape-shifter's hideout have been discovered and the Shields are planning a covert mission to capture the criminal and foil her masters' plans. Join Isleguard W'mhelgo Hena immediately and assist her in her operation.[/quote']

 

In any event, I'm not including the previous mentions of Dravanian alteration and voidsent submission (usually via a copy of the Sharlayan tome, Necrologos) as examples of shape-shifting. Shape-shifting implies being able to shift back and forth between forms, something that is impossible in the aforementioned examples. Having consumed dragon blood imbued with the powerful magicks of a Celestial Wyrm, an Ishgardian harboring the essence of Ratatoskr permanently becomes a dragon - be it aevis or syricta. And those who become one with a voidsent lose their human form.

 

 

2) Lore aside, the main crux of this character trait is that in most roleplay, this apparently very central plot point will never come into play. In what RP will your character turn into a big white cat? How would this be portrayed outside of the lion/coeurl mount or in verbose character emote descriptions? And if it's something that is so seldom brought to the front of your rp, it's negative side effect of repeated use resulting in more difficult re-transformations becomes a non-issue of an eventuality that will never come to pass in roleplay. At that point, it seems to serve little function other than to make your character sound more interesting over tavern table conversation.

 

I think the trait could be better explored by making the shape-shift inconveniently impossible to control, assuming it's really a curse inherited from blood not some magic he's mastered. Or that such transformations are long, painful, or the character no longer possesses control of their body when shifted, a true negative drawback considering there's no telling what or who he might do or hurt as a big cat. Permanent transformation can always still be a legitimate worry, but as it would likely never affect actual roleplay, it can't really be counted as a negative power-check.

 

 

3) Is the father killing his son's children to stop them passing on this shape-shifter curse? Otherwise his actions seem really extreme, and casts a lot of doubt on an already matriarchal society who only appreciate the company of Keeper men in small doses choosing the son of a homicidal male as their leader. Would they not cast him out of their family as well, now that he is cursed to protect themselves? It would explain why your character can travel around to rp in various places than him being a leader of a family group?

 

Just some things to think on when continuing to develop the character.

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As a starting alone story or a book it would be an interesting concept I'd be interested in reading but for use in a role play environment I can't see it working out well. I can try to explain my opinion then you can decide if it's valid or not. 

 

Fantasy Worlds are just that, fantasy. The reason we get invested though is that these worlds adhere to their own set of rules to create believability. I'm not going to say you shouldn't try but the concept requires heavily bending or breaking the rules of the world then asking others to accept it. At that point other players must adjust their understanding of the world to make room for the changes.  See, when players choose to adjust in order to conform specifically to your character ideal then it no longer becomes a part of their story, it almost entirely becomes your story. It's less fun to play if you if you find yourself becoming the side character to someone who was tailor made to be the hero under these adjusted rules.

 

My suggestion is to try and find a compromise between what you want your character to be and what is more plausible lore wise.

 

Maybe it's possible your character was the eldest survivor and took on that responsibility? Maybe he traveled off on his own and gained some followers?

 

As for the shapeshifting, I don't know about that but I would look at the blue mage for something that runs close to your concept.

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I think the shapeshifting abilities of Imps and Sylphs are more along the lines of illusion/glamour magic rather than a real transformation, since they're usually dispelled by magic before entering combat in leves and quests. The only real transformations I can think of are those caused by cursed traps and enemy magic, like being turned into a frog in PotD and elsewhere.

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Having consumed dragon blood imbued with the powerful magicks of a Celestial Wyrm, an Ishgardian harboring the essence of Ratatoskr permanently becomes a dragon - be it aevis or syricta.

Is this explicitly stated somewhere or is it implied? Because I have been under the implication that it is true but is it explicitly stated somewhere?

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Having consumed dragon blood imbued with the powerful magicks of a Celestial Wyrm, an Ishgardian harboring the essence of Ratatoskr permanently becomes a dragon - be it aevis or syricta.

Is this explicitly stated somewhere or is it implied? Because I have been under the implication that it is true but is it explicitly stated somewhere?

 

Heustienne in the DRG storyline mentions she was forced to drink dragon blood, and appears to us after this juncture as an elezen. However, it's never made clear if it's because she managed to shapeshift back temporarily, or if it's simply because she's staving off the transformation to begin with. She's clearly shown struggling to maintain her elezen form, either way.

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We should also probably take into consideration what the tiger actually is in Eorzea. According to the description of the Tiger's Eye gemstone, tigers are a legend that might be an ancestor of the coerul. If you stick to the transforming thing, chances are no one will recognize the tiger as anything but another beast.

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Having consumed dragon blood imbued with the powerful magicks of a Celestial Wyrm, an Ishgardian harboring the essence of Ratatoskr permanently becomes a dragon - be it aevis or syricta.

Is this explicitly stated somewhere or is it implied? Because I have been under the implication that it is true but is it explicitly stated somewhere?

 

I'm pretty sure they mention it rather factually in the MSQ with Ysaile the first time they go meet her in the Akh-Akfa Amphitheater.

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Having consumed dragon blood imbued with the powerful magicks of a Celestial Wyrm, an Ishgardian harboring the essence of Ratatoskr permanently becomes a dragon - be it aevis or syricta.

Is this explicitly stated somewhere or is it implied? Because I have been under the implication that it is true but is it explicitly stated somewhere?

 

Upon closer examination it appears to either depend on the quality/quantity of Dragon Blood you consume or the "concentration of Ratatoskr's essence" present in your blood. In the Dragoon quest Sanguine Dragoon, there's a group of heretics called the Bloodbearers who have the ability to transform or not transform into Dravanians after consuming the blood of Graoully, but eventually regress back into men after a period of time.

 

They call themselves the Bloodbearers, and their leader is a man named Matheonien. He and his minions are all capable of assuming the form of dragons. Such a transformation is possible by partaking of dragon blood─I daresay you have borne witness to it─and it grants the individual unholy strength. Though the sanguine substance is precious, the Bloodbearers have access to an abundant supply owing to their pact with Graoully. That is why they have been able to offer our forces such fierce resistance.

 

They say that strange merchants have been acquiring goods in prodigious quantities. It seems to me the Bloodbearers are replenishing their stores. Let us split up and scour the area for these so-called merchants. Should someone strike you as suspicious, confront him and gauge his reaction.

The half-man' date=' half-dragon abomination Bloodbearer Robairlain has laid claim to the sacred cavern known as Mourn, slaying several of its peaceful guardians in the process.[/quote']

 

In that same questline, it suggests that upon supping the blood of a dragon, the mind steadily deteriorates into addiction - Heustienne begins craving it.

 

As you yourself have witnessed' date=' dragon blood alters the flesh. And once the flesh is altered, the mind must soon follow.[/quote']

 

Other accounts suggest that upon drinking the blood and making their transformation into an Aevis, Syricta, or Diresaur, the change is permanent. However, this could just mean these people repeatedly drank the blood until the transformation was permanent or possessed an essence of Ratatoskr undiluted enough to instantly achieve permanent transformation, whereas heretics in more recent years and more diluted essence such as the Bloodbearers may not possess enough essence in their blood to immediately make the change permanent. In either case, the lore is clear that at some point the change becomes permanent.

 

You pulled this from the beast's corpse? Hmmm...this armor dates back to before any of us were born' date=' but there can be no mistake─it was forged in Ishgard! [b']This must mean that dragon was once a heretic, and drank of the dragon blood until he...[/b] The gilding on the armor indicates it's hundreds of years old... What would drive a man to choose to become...that? To a heretic, does such a transformation indicate transcendence?

Its leader' date=' a peasant who styled himself the great guru Gandarewa, fled to the next holiest place he knew─the sacred mountain of Dravania. There he supped on the blood of a dragon, and was forever changed...[/quote']

The archbishop declared it a heretic's tale' date=' and with good cause. It is a corruption of an older legend in which a man partakes of dragon blood and, in so doing, becomes one himself.[/quote']

They say that aevis are what become of men─heretics who drink dragon blood. But' date=' what could make a man...[/quote']

During their thousand-year war with the dragons' date=' Ishgardians stumbled upon a dark secret - it seemed that some men, upon partaking in a dragon's blood, would be granted the ability to transform into a hideous chimerical hybrid. In time, these aberrations would come to be called aevises, a word taken from the Enchiridion meaning "devil who flies." Recent revelations have shown that this transformation is not a matter of chance, but is most likely to occur in those who claim lineage with those great Ishgardian heroes who consumed the eye of Ratatoskr, ever tainting their bloodline.[/quote']

Once a beautiful young Elezen with skin like snow and hair like an autumn sun' date=' the dragon maiden was driven to sip the blood of the Horde after being set upon by a pair of highborn knights (who were subsequently tried and hung for their crimes). Since then, she has grown into one of the most ruthless of all wyrm-blooded heretics, attacking even innocent children. Deliver the maiden from this world and give her soul peace once again.[/quote']

 

 

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I think the shapeshifting abilities of Imps and Sylphs are more along the lines of illusion/glamour magic rather than a real transformation, since they're usually dispelled by magic before entering combat in leves and quests.

 

This actually got me to thinking about how Imps are almost exclusively referred to as "shape-shifting" or "shape-shifters" with close to twenty separate references using some variation of that phrase, but I could only find two to three instances where their shape-shifting magic was referred to as "glamour."

 

By comparison, when Sylphs alter their appearance it is almost exclusively referred to as "glamour magicks," "sylvan glamours," or "illusions." I only found a couple instances where the Sylph's glamour magicks were referred to as "skin-changing" from the Scions and the Sylphs.

 

Though the two magicks are obviously quite similar, I wonder if there is actually some notable distinction between the two? (Other than the obvious void origin.) Hrmmm...

 

EDIT: In any case (totally got sidetracked), if we take all examples of shape-shifting in the lore as nothing more than glamour magicks, even Parazuzu and Xha Viqqoh assuming they can in actuality shape-shift, any canon form of shape-shifting in the setting could be dispelled just as easily with a touch or disruptive sundry items. So would the OP's tiger shape-shift be affected similarly? Likely not as it empowers him more akin to dravanian transformation.

 

 

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We should also probably take into consideration what the tiger actually is in Eorzea. According to the description of the Tiger's Eye gemstone, tigers are a legend that might be an ancestor of the coerul. If you stick to the transforming thing, chances are no one will recognize the tiger as anything but another beast.

 

A golden-brown jewel consisting of many colored layers. When polished' date=' it resembles the eye of a tiger─a legendary beast believed to be the ancestor of the coeurl.[/quote']

A striped saltwater fish indigenous to the cold northern waters of the Bloodbrine Sea. The name “tiger” is said to have been taken from a similarly striped beast native to the faraway jungles of Othard.

This violent freshwater fish was dubbed the tigerfish by a group of Auri travelers who claim the striped pattern on the wavekin's back resembles that of a Far Eastern beast known as a tiger.

Native to southern Ilsabard and inner Othard' date=' there was a time when, for the people of Eorzea, tigers were little more than the stuff of legends - fantastical creatures to grace a sotted sailor's tale of high adventure in lands transmarine. Recently, however, organizations such as the Coliseum in Ul'dah and Limsa Lominsa's Maelstrom have paid trappers exorbitant sums of gil to have the exotic beasts ferried to Eorzea that they may be called upon to test the mettle of their men.[/quote']

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We should also probably take into consideration what the tiger actually is in Eorzea. According to the description of the Tiger's Eye gemstone, tigers are a legend that might be an ancestor of the coerul. If you stick to the transforming thing, chances are no one will recognize the tiger as anything but another beast.

There's tigers. I'm also 90% positive I've spawned a "Territorial Tiger" recently from doing treasure maps in HW areas that was a similar model.

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Oh cool, there are tigers that aren't just renames of the coerul model then. :v

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I remember a levequest where we had to hunt Big Claws glamoured to look like ordinary Megalocrabs. So it isn't just sylphs and imps that can glamour their appearance. Big Claws aren't even that intelligent are they? So glamour must be a natural ability rather than something they created.

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That wasn't a glamour, though, was it? As I recall, in that levequest, the cores weren't a glamour dispeller - they just happened to only have the effect of turning the crab a different colour when it was a Big Claw. Like litmus paper.

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Now that spawning season has come to a close' date=' a whole new generation of big claws is ready to step form the sea and wreak havoc on the coastline. The aid of adventurers is required to see that the local fishers and farmers remain free from the crabs' deadly grasp. Remember, the only method of distinguishing a big claw from a megalocrab is by using the core of a lightning sprite. If, when shocked, the crab's shell turns red, the beast must be slain.[/quote']

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When you do the levequest it says glamour.

 

...huh. Well that's interesting. Though I guess that makes sense that there are monsters whose aether allows them to breathe fire, others have glamour-camouflage. Now I need to see how often that sort of thing shows up in non-sentient creatures. Good find Charity!

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It's worth considering that battlecraft leves are basically a fill-in-the-template sort of design, though: The objectives don't change much from zone to zone, they just change the names of the things you're doing. It's a slippery slope to say "disregard system messages as a source of lore" but this is one where I'm more willing to listen to the quest dialogue and written fluff instead of the ad libs template for battle design.

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Maybe Big Claws have a less sophisticated type of natural glamour. They can't look like a different shaped creature, like imps, but they can glamour themselves to a different colour so they can hide amongst the ordinary megalocrabs. Some sort of special light, from sprites or fireflies, seems to be the go to glamour dispeller that lets you see the true appearance. Maybe Big Claws are sort of like a chameleon and the sprite cores dispel the colour glamour.

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