World Building: Creating Fantasy Animals and Creatures
I talked about plants in the post Creating Fantasy Plants. Now, let talk about creating fantasy animals.
Darkness has taken. Its power torments people. Animals and plants slowly evolve to thrive in this dangerous world. In Book 1 of my Merging World series, you learned about glowing plants. You discovered mutated animals in Book 3. In Book 4, new species of plants and animals appear all the time.
Use Real Life Animals
I don’t plan on reinventing the wheel. I’m mostly talking animals that exist in our world and tweaking them. For instance, I’ll take a wolf and turn it blue.
“The wolf pulled its large ears back and snarled. Silver liquid dripped from its fangs. Its fur turned into black and ice blue flowing silk.”
I’ll need to do more research because I have a tendency to default to dog and cat-like animals.
If you’ve spent time on this blog, you’ll know I sometimes do mythical creature posts. —Mythical Creature: The Color of Dragons— I enjoy researching so looking up folklore is fun. It also gives me inspiration for my own worlds. In my series, I created belials. They’re demons that disguise themselves as lost children and prey on adults who take pity on them. They were inspired by my research into mythical creatures. Mythology has some truly creative and fascinating animals.
There’s no shortage of fantasy artwork. Just Google fantasy animals and you’ll find some interesting creations.
I have boards on Pinterest for Mythical Creatures.
If you get stuck, cross a lion with a snake or a bat with a spider. I’m reading this manga, Gyo, that starts with a killer fish on four spider-like legs.
Location-Based Fantasy Animals
You can’t find all animals everywhere. Some animals in your story should be location-based. Two of my characters are world travels and researchers so they often talk like this:
“It has the antlers of a Tsyian mountain goat and the broad body of a gold tiger found deep in the Pallos forest.”
Location can also help with characteristics and powers. A bear found in a snowy region could have ice powers. The region as well as the surrounding culture can tell you what these animals are used for and how they’re viewed.
How Are Animals Treated
My characters treat animals like companions instead of pets. They generally don’t use the animals for anything. However, in Book 4, my characters need to travel to another island but they can’t find a boat. They search out winged creatures who fly them across the ocean.
Which animals exist to balance life in your world and which ones are primarily used by humans. Do people eat these animals?
By Book 4, animals are smarter than most humans. Hunting them is nearly impossible. What animals are used for can affect your character’s way of life?
I play Pokemon which is a great source of inspiration. I would love to talk to the people who create those little creatures. The level of creativity is insane. Researching Pokemon can help you with animal attributes if you want to make your creatures magical.
How do you create animals for your stories?