A wonderful blast of lightning knocked out my power over the weekend, and I lost a beautiful set of pictures I had been planning on using for a new entry. No worries, though! Creatures remained unharmed, and it wasn’t too hard to find some more photogenic opportunities. Poor Halvor was swarmed by most of the Norns in the world, and he certainly looked upset! One interesting occurrence was the rate at which Erisktad aged: Although he possessed no unusual aging genes, he was an adult at a little over 40 minutes old. Most Norns reach adulthood well after one hour of life. He seemed undeterred, though, and acted like the rest of the youngsters!
One new face pictured above is that of Forvika, who is the daughter of Dagny and Truett. What a beautiful little Norn! Her legs blended in quite well with the rest of her body, which made them look very natural. As expected, she had a handful of interesting genetic mutations worth studying. Forvika inherited all of the new Purple Mountain Norn genes from her father, but I will leave these out of the discussion. I will be discussing the differences in the newer breeds in detail sometime this month. There still are plenty of genes to look at, though! One never needs to look too far to find some sort of genetic comparison related to Creatures, especially around here! Onto the analysis and discussion, which might prove quite interesting for budding geneticists.
Brain lobes include important information about how the different parts of the brain work, from how concepts are learned to how a Norn goes through the decision process. These genes can greatly affect the learning process.
120 Emb B MutDup Lobe #= 6 Dendrite Type 0: Input Lobe=8, Min #=130, Max#=132, Spread=0, Fanout=8
Another brain lobe mutation! The difference here exists in the minimum and maximum number of dendrites from the concept lobe to the decision lobe. Remember that dendrites are simply the means of connecting neurons between different lobes. In the standard Norn genome, there are both a minimum and maximum number of 128 dendrites. Forvika’s original genome included a minimum of 130 and a maximum of 128 dendrites: This inconsistency was automatically corrected in the Genetics Kit so that she would have a minimum of 130 and a maximum of 132 dendrites. In the end, Forvika has slightly more dendrites then the average Norn. I am unsure if this difference is significant enough to allow her to become a smarter Norn, but it certainly paves the way for a creature who has a larger capacity for learning!
Chemical emitters define specific conditions within a Creature in order to affect chemicals. Some examples include experiencing stress from excessive drives, becoming cold due to environmental conditions, and more.
141 Emb B MutDupCut Creature, Sensorimotor, Crowdedness, chem=Crowdedness, thresh=0, samp=75, gain=51, features=Analogue
This gene should look identical to anyone following along, except for its gene number. Forvika actually has a copy of this gene in her genome! This should have no effect on her, since the gene is an exact copy. However, I have no idea what duplicated genes can do for a Norn. For instance, what if there are two copies of a gene and they have different effects? Which one will be used, or will the game attempt to use both at the same time?
Chemical half-lives define the decay rate of each chemical. In the absence of any reactions, a half-life defines how long a chemical will remain. Half-lives can range from fractions of a second to an entire lifetime.
1 Emb B MutDup decASH1 1
In the standard Norn genome, the half-life of decASH1 is set at 0, which equates to an instantaneous half life. In the Genetics Kit, the next highest available number is 8, which takes about 0.4 seconds. I have a feeling that this mutation will have absolutely no effect on Forvika!
Stimuli genes define the chemicals that a Creature expects to receive in response to an action. These actions can range from interactions with the hand to involuntary actions like coughing or sneezing.
93 Adu B Mut ‘Pointer slaps me’ causes sig=32 GS neu=1(I’ve been slapped) int=255, , , Sensed Even When Asleep => 75*Pain++ + 32*Fear++ + 16*Anger++ + 16*Sleepiness-
This stimulus is pretty self-explanatory: It defines what chemicals will be released when the creature is slapped by the hand. This mutation is certainly a very interesting one! Forvika does not react to any spanks or slaps until she is an adult. I tested this out, and although she does yell out, she does not flinch, nor do any of the chemicals increase in her system. Even speaking the verbal command for punishment seems to have no effect on her! This creates a difficulty in teaching her not to perform bad actions, although in practice, Forvika has been a very intelligent Norn. Adulthood will come with a bit of an unpleasant surprise, unless she is on her best behavior!
The next egg hatched and revealed a startlingly sad Norn. This is Glein, the son of Arik and Bera. I expected to find a mutation that would explain his instant frown, but I was surprised to find that he had absolutely no genetic mutations. What makes Glein interesting is the fact that he has a combination of standard Norn genes and Forest Norn genes. In all of the babies thus far, they either inherited all of the updated genes, or did not. Keep an eye out for a discussion of the differences in the Purple Mountain Norn and Forest Norn genomes soon! Fortunately, Glein perked right up after he finished his initial lessons and got his first taste of food. Perhaps he just really enjoyed his home inside of his egg!
While the majority of the Norns, as well as Halvor, hung out between the jungle and the desert island, Glein made himself at home near the incubator and garden. Unfortunately, Arnes had already begun to deteriorate. Before Glein was born, he stared off into space, and walked into walls whenever he started to move. He had not eaten in ages, even with my persistent but gentle urging. Glein provided Arnes with a way to finally interact, although it was most often Glein who spoke or moved. Arnes got in a word every now and then, though! At least he could talk and have some sort of interaction with others.
Halvor escaped from the Norn group for a little alone time. I noticed that he was not eating very well, and I helped him regain his appetite. A taste of honey usually perks up any Norn or Grendel! He also sampled the nearby ugly tomato. I had not seen Halvor happier, and this image was captured as he was running around with a huge smile on his face! Could he be any more adorable? That was highly doubtful.
Most of the Norns were on the desert island, and I was able to move Forvika away from the group so she could enjoy a decent meal. She also discovered one of the few cans of Purple Mountain Hootch and promptly gulped most of it down! I closed Creatures 1 just after taking her picture, so it will be a matter of time before the alcohol can take effect. Silly Forvika! At least she was smart enough to eat before drinking. Even now, I still am amazed at how well the Purple Mountain Norn legs match the Banana Norn body. Her mother chose well!