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Glennstavos

How human should transformation units look?

Preferred Beasties?  

28 members have voted

  1. 1. Preferred Beasties?

    • Group A: Wait, how old are you...?
      4
    • Group B: All fangs and whisker. Savages, every one.
      24


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Group A: Tiki, Nowi, Fae, Corrin, and Dragon Laguz

What these units have in common, besides transforming into dragons, is that they maintain a totally human appearance and physiology with only the addition of pointed Elven ears. Dragon Laguz do have markings on their face instead of pointed ears, but since this tribe lives in isolation, humans can't be expected to recognize such markings, as pointed out to us by a certain support. Several of these characters can, and do, live among humans without drawing attention to their true lineage. 

Group B: Myrrh, Taguel, Kitsune, Wolfskin, Beast Laguz, Bird Laguz, and Raven Laguz

These units are quickly recognized as being a separate species and as such live separate from humans. Only Myrrh proves that she can pass as human when wearing a cloak around her wings. Wings strong enough for flight, even when not transformed. Raven and Bird Laguz may be capable of the same deception in their human forms, but I don't remember any direct evidence of this in the games so be sure to remind me. The other members would have further difficulty with animal-like ears, tails, and other facial features. As Shinon puts it:

Spoiler

Shinon:
“What, you mean to tell me you’ve never seen a beast-man before?”

Ike:
“No, never.”

Shinon:
“Well, I have. They’re a hairy bunch, I’ll tell you. And ugly as sin, too. Their faces are all fangs and whisker. Their claws are like daggers, razor sharp and deadly. And even though they can speak our language, they’re beasts through and through. Savages, every one.

So the ultimate question is this: Do you think units that can transform into creatures in battle should have relative physical features in their human forms? This is purely a question of aesthetic and/or narrative preference, not which group has more characters you happen to like individually.

Edited by Gustavos

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I think I prefer group B. I sort of like that these characters carry evidence of their true forms within their human bodies rather than just making them simply pointy-eared (not that I don't dig the ears, though!). It shows more of a connection between their forms. Though, young Tiki, Nagi, and Fae ARE able to spawn their wings out.

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I kind of like something a bit in the middle. Having no special physical traits besides pointed ears is a bit boring but I don't want them going full furry like the Taguel either. So give me a human with wings, horns, animal ears or whatever else. No fur suits please. 

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I prefer group B. While I do like the pointed ears on characters, seeing them show some of their true traits in their human forms is very cool imo. 

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I much prefer group B, because I think it is cool that you retain characteristics of your transformation in your human forme. Which is neat.

 

Although, didn't Lethe and Mordecai manage to hide around in a town in PoR with a cloak that only showed their face? I can't remember very well, but i think they get found for some other reason or something and the battle starts because of it... maybe making that up though.

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The better question is; why have the dragons of type A pointed ears? I'm pretty sure they don't have pointed ears in their dragon form so where do they come from? Maybe because this type of ears is a lazy shorthand for a non-human race? Yeah, I'm pretty sure that's it. So, definitely type B for me, if only for the fact that their designs show far more creativity than the others.

That and Panne looks awesome. Love her.

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45 minutes ago, Efina Leonhart said:

The better question is; why have the dragons of type A pointed ears? I'm pretty sure they don't have pointed ears in their dragon form so where do they come from? Maybe because this type of ears is a lazy shorthand for a non-human race? Yeah, I'm pretty sure that's it. So, definitely type B for me, if only for the fact that their designs show far more creativity than the others.

That and Panne looks awesome. Love her.

I would guess the "pointy ears" are because they were um lazy in the original game...

If an anatomical feature were to align with dragons it would probably be horns as reptiles and their relatives ears are internalized unlike the partially external ears of mammals.

Anatomically Hair Feathers and Scales are all different variations of the same structure so they should be fine existing across the various form shifters.

For dragons I would say the main feature they should give them is reptilian eyes

On the other hand I have never liked animal people where they simply stick ears and a tail onto them as that has gained bad connotations via cultural reasons...

A point that i feel needs to be addressed is that transformation units for the most part through the series have been kinda underwhelming with exclusion of some of the Laguz units in Tellius  mainly Royals to be honest... The stone system prevalent in most games lacks the full impact that shapeshifters really should have in my opinion namely the altered mobility due to having an alternate form... While the stone method could work for non promoted units I miss the true transformation aspect which completely changed how the units moved and navigated.

 

The TLDR is 

-More inhuman traits in human form (In the case of Dragons eyes and some scaling on areas where they lack hair as well as perhaps wings if so inclined perhaps even reptilian feet/claws

-Units that actually transform rather than the standard dull *transforms to attack and immediately reverts* Which would honestly waste more energy  than staying in their true form for the battle...

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Sorry Tiki, but I'm gonna go with group B in this.

and definitely this:

2 hours ago, Dragrath said:

The TLDR is 

-More inhuman traits in human form (In the case of Dragons eyes and some scaling on areas where they lack hair as well as perhaps wings if so inclined perhaps even reptilian feet/claws

-Units that actually transform rather than the standard dull *transforms to attack and immediately reverts* Which would honestly waste more energy  than staying in their true form for the battle...

My favourite version of the unit transformation is in fe 3, 9 & 10, the only annoyance with the system those games have is that the transformation is temporary (and in 3 not displayed as far as I remember) which added a ticking clock to their usefulness, though in 3 you could extend the time by raising their luck, and tellius had the royals, as late as they came.

In general about the aesthetics, as stated above, I think they could go for a less "human" look.

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I once thought maybe the dragon laguz shouldve had dragony features in human form, but they've grown on me the way they are...regardless, voted for group B.

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Hmm, I guess I lean more towards bestial features in humanoid form in the vein of laguz. Make them look as animalistic as they are! ...Within reason. Keep them on a mostly humanoid template - no fur outside of tails, hair and ears. Wings are fine. No anthros, please. Beast laguz do it the best for me, but Bird laguz are cool too.
 

5 hours ago, Dragoncat said:

I once thought maybe the dragon laguz shouldve had dragony features in human form, but they've grown on me the way they are...regardless, voted for group B.

For the Dragon laguz, there's not much they could have done that wasn't already covered. Fangs, claws? Beast tribes. Wings? Bird tribes.

Giving them orangeish skin and facial markings was pretty much the only option to differentiate them from beorc. Even the Birds already have the pointed ears.

Edited by Extrasolar

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I went for group B. I like the animal features added to the Laguz, and I do quite like the Taguel, although I prefer the way they did the Laguz and the Kitsune and Wolf Tribe from Fates. I wouldn't want them to take it any further, though. I'd prefer them to be mostly humanoid.

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15 hours ago, Extrasolar said:

Hmm, I guess I lean more towards bestial features in humanoid form in the vein of laguz. Make them look as animalistic as they are! ...Within reason. Keep them on a mostly humanoid template - no fur outside of tails, hair and ears. Wings are fine. No anthros, please. Beast laguz do it the best for me, but Bird laguz are cool too.
 

For the Dragon laguz, there's not much they could have done that wasn't already covered. Fangs, claws? Beast tribes. Wings? Bird tribes.

Giving them orangeish skin and facial markings was pretty much the only option to differentiate them from beorc. Even the Birds already have the pointed ears.

Eyes are a major standout though as I argued the presence of the reptilian/avian(depending on if you consider birds reptiles based on ancestry) style of eyes I feel would have helped differentiate them though once again that probably would go for any shape shifters. The major stand out would have been scaling (on areas without hair of course as hair/scales/hair are all variations of the same developmental structure)

 

21 hours ago, ClassyWolf said:

Sorry Tiki, but I'm gonna go with group B in this.

and definitely this:

My favorite version of the unit transformation is in fe 3, 9 & 10, the only annoyance with the system those games have is that the transformation is temporary (and in 3 not displayed as far as I remember) which added a ticking clock to their usefulness, though in 3 you could extend the time by raising their luck, and tellius had the royals, as late as they came.

In general about the aesthetics, as stated above, I think they could go for a less "human" look.

Yeah I can agree with you there I like the idea of transformations being extended by stats though shame they didn't keep that...

Now if one where to play around with the mechanics beyond durability like how fates did I am thinking a system treating dragonstones/beast stones as rechargeable batteries for sustaining transformations might be a cool idea. (With higher grades being bigger batteries effectively) Then you could take a laguz like cost per action (perhaps w/ different actions having different costs)

Like breath attacks serving as powerful and ranged but high energy cost  moves versus weaker melee claw attacks then perhaps even some AOE effects or active abilities etc. (with a small maintenance cost for remaining transformations) Then perhaps some transformation accelerating/(or form maintenance option if shifted already) such as meditation or a stronger item based(i.e. olivi grass) type mechanics to maintain things (Laguz stones sucked though the transformations were too short to warrant being unable to act the turn it was used personally)

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18 minutes ago, Dragrath said:

Eyes are a major standout though as I argued the presence of the reptilian/avian(depending on if you consider birds reptiles based on ancestry) style of eyes I feel would have helped differentiate them though once again that probably would go for any shape shifters. The major stand out would have been scaling (on areas without hair of course as hair/scales/hair are all variations of the same developmental structure)

True, and iirc the Dragon laguz actually do have slitted reptillian eyes, but they're kind of hard to see in-game (close-ups on Soren's eyes reveal that his are designed that way, as seen in his Cipher artwork and a few other more recent pieces of him; and Kurthnaga's official art has him with them). Though as for scales...not sure about that one. If anything, it would create something of an "Uncanny Valley" and strange effect with scale patterns fading to skin and vice versa. It's hard to blend the two, just because of how different they are.

Of course, part of why the Dragon tribes looked relatively human was so that someone like Nasir could reasonably pose as a beorc, but that's more of a Doylist explanation.
 

18 minutes ago, Dragrath said:

Then you could take a laguz like cost per action (perhaps w/ different actions having different costs)

Like breath attacks serving as powerful and ranged but high energy cost  moves versus weaker melee claw attacks then perhaps even some AOE effects or active abilities etc. (with a small maintenance cost for remaining transformations)

Hmm, I kind of like this idea. Considering I always wished the Dragons in RD did something other than breathe (come on, you guys don't have those huge arms, claws, and tails for nothing...), giving them multiple options would be good. Plus, you'd have to decide whether to use a strong breath attack to potentially nuke a group of enemies, but lose a lot of transformation gauge to the point that they might revert at an inopportune time, or just do a weaker claw attack and save your gauge for later.

Edited by Extrasolar

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12 minutes ago, Extrasolar said:

True, and iirc the Dragon laguz actually do have slitted reptillian eyes, but they're kind of hard to see in-game (close-ups on Soren's eyes reveal that his are designed that way, as seen in his Cipher artwork and a few other more recent pieces of him; and Kurthnaga's official art has him with them). Though as for scales...not sure about that one. If anything, it would create something of an "Uncanny Valley" and strange effect with scale patters fading to skin and vice versa. It's hard to blend the two, just because of how different they are.

Of course, part of why the Dragon tribes looked relatively human was so that someone like Nasir could reasonably pose as a beorc, but that's more of a Doylist explanation.
 

Hmm, I kind of like this idea. Considering I always wished the Dragons in RD did something other than breathe (come on, you guys don't have those huge arms, claws, and tails for nothing...), giving them multiple options would be good. Plus, you'd have to decide whether to use a strong breath attack to potentially nuke a group of enemies, but lose a lot of transformation gauge to the point that they might revert at an inopportune time, or just do a weaker claw attack and save your gauge for later.

Oh I guess I never looked into that level of detail XD Glad they at least have that :) Yeah I was trying to think how to make them more tactical as among all units transformers tend to be the most dull when it comes to decisions. Just send them in and avoid enemies w/ unit weakness basically...

 

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42 minutes ago, Dragrath said:

Now if one where to play around with the mechanics beyond durability like how fates did I am thinking a system treating dragonstones/beast stones as rechargeable batteries for sustaining transformations might be a cool idea. (With higher grades being bigger batteries effectively) Then you could take a laguz like cost per action (perhaps w/ different actions having different costs)

Like breath attacks serving as powerful and ranged but high energy cost  moves versus weaker melee claw attacks then perhaps even some AOE effects or active abilities etc. (with a small maintenance cost for remaining transformations) Then perhaps some transformation accelerating/(or form maintenance option if shifted already) such as meditation or a stronger item based(i.e. olivi grass) type mechanics to maintain things (Laguz stones sucked though the transformations were too short to warrant being unable to act the turn it was used personally)

This honestly seems like a really good idea, it would add flexibility and with a bit of thinking ahead and strategizing you could maybe play without having those units revert and become defensless.

There was the demi band in fe9 also as you mentioned items, which had the effect of lowerd stats for constant dragon/beast form (though U don't think you got a dragon in time to acctually use it that much, though it might have been possible for one or two chapters, can't remeber it's been a while since I played PoR), so they might be able to do something with equipable items that alow certain actions, like you can just have your unit rest for a turn (not take an action) to slightly replenish their tramsformation gauge for example (like olivi grass but without needing a consumable), and that is just one example I can think of that could be done not to mention what they could do with attacks like you mentioned.

 

16 hours ago, Extrasolar said:

Hmm, I guess I lean more towards bestial features in humanoid form in the vein of laguz. Make them look as animalistic as they are! ...Within reason. Keep them on a mostly humanoid template - no fur outside of tails, hair and ears. Wings are fine. No anthros, please. Beast laguz do it the best for me, but Bird laguz are cool too.

I'm then again one who wouldn't mind if they went a bit further than they did in fe9, 10, 13, 14.

The problem why it wouldn't probably work on the other hand, why would they just go from two legged to four?

So while I wouldn't be against it, I think it could potentially look a tad silly

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1 hour ago, ClassyWolf said:

This honestly seems like a really good idea, it would add flexibility and with a bit of thinking ahead and strategizing you could maybe play without having those units revert and become defenseless.

There was the demi band in fe9 also as you mentioned items, which had the effect of lowerd stats for constant dragon/beast form (though U don't think you got a dragon in time to actually use it that much, though it might have been possible for one or two chapters, can't remember it's been a while since I played PoR), so they might be able to do something with equipable items that allow certain actions, like you can just have your unit rest for a turn (not take an action) to slightly replenish their transformation gauge for example (like olivi grass but without needing a consumable), and that is just one example I can think of that could be done not to mention what they could do with attacks like you mentioned.

 

I'm then again one who wouldn't mind if they went a bit further than they did in fe9, 10, 13, 14.

The problem why it wouldn't probably work on the other hand, why would they just go from two legged to four?

So while I wouldn't be against it, I think it could potentially look a tad silly

Yeah the key point of the demiband and the FE 10 counterpart skill is you didn't have to work to it(It comes with Murium's recruitment as does Voulg for the FE10 skill counterpart(which also massively nerfs exp due to the transformed Laguz counting as promoted units bit)) It was nice to not have the units defenseless but it was very simple unlike conventional weapons which offer far more varied choices to the player making the users honestly tactically uninteresting.

But yeah I would love to see transforming units expanded on in a way similar to how I suggested(well obviously as I brought it up lol) The idea in this case honestly comes from fates with regards to the varied attacks due to ditching durability (though I would argue that the Bronze as well as B rank+ weapons were handled terribly for the most part) and FE9-10 with the idea of a meter that has to be maintained(just I feel it should be possible to keep the transformation active if you manage the usage of it)

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In my personal opinion, nonhuman races should be visibly nonhuman unless it's somehow important to the plot or lore that they aren't, so I voted for B. I honestly wouldn't mind if they went even less human than that, as long as they designed the characters mindfully and kept them aesthetically-pleasing and not lazily-constructed. It's not like the way things are now really bothers me; I just think that what I described would be preferable to me personally.

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Group B, their different specias which means they may not even need to be on the ground to move, or could turn into clouds( i want a unit like that now.)

 

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