Baffled by Bantrids


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TarkXT wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
The mere fact that they are aberrations suggests that they did not develop naturally.
Suggests but doesn't confirm. Aberration in Starfinder I feel is just a catch all for creatures that don't fit into the paradigm of plant/animal/vermin/humanoid.

I agree. Aberration seems to be used on any creature that does not follow traditional morphology. Odds are, if it looks like something out of the deep ocean, is an amalgamate, or the artist said "frell the rules!" it's an aberration.


Some real world bugs have evolved actual toothed gears in their legs, so I don't find the bantrids that outlandish.


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Let me just say that the fact that this degree of discussion could happen means they're the perfect edition to a game like Starfinder.


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Big Lemon wrote:
Let me just say that the fact that this degree of discussion could happen means they're the perfect edition to a game like Starfinder.

Agreed!


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Okami Atari wrote:

The RACE looks interesting, bug It is the worst playable race i have ever read in any RPG. You are forfeiting half roleplayers Who play mostly for the rules:: Darkvision, stand from prone, inmunity to stinky cloud and 10 extra move with almost no drawback at all because there is no special rule for having no proper hands, head or feet. Seriously?

Everyhting you have done well in core starfinder regarding game balance you have screewed up with some features in this book, It looks as you are trying to lure back munchkings into the game

Ysoki have Darkvision and stand from prone as a swift action, and they have killer stat and skill bonuses to boot. Stinking cloud immunity isn't THAT good... how often do you really hit that spell? And 10 extra move is good, but the Nuar get that AND natural attacks.


Sir RicHunt Attenwampi wrote:
Some real world bugs have evolved actual toothed gears in their legs, so I don't find the bantrids that outlandish.

Can you find an alternate article? Popular Mechanics makes you pay to read it. There has to be something on youtube to explain it. And Bantrids can't stop. If they do, they hyperventilate until they pass out.


Big Lemon wrote:
Let me just say that the fact that this degree of discussion could happen means they're the perfect edition to a game like Starfinder.

I do believe you mean addition.


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Starfinder Superscriber

The more I've been thinking about it, the more I'm convinced the wheel is like a pearl. Mucous or something like that (I still like my original idea of it's their waste product) that hardens. Newly budded bantrids don't have the wheel yet (and would move like slugs) until they get their first big creature poop, then they start to form the wheel. By 1 year the wheel is formed enough to start moving on their own and that leads to their life of speed.


Starfinder Superscriber

Yeah, I'm not seeing any difficulty imagining a scenario in play where these creatures could have evolved or been created specifically to fill a particular niche. At least, not one any less likely than any of the other creatures in play. There are lots of creatures in play and out that have each of their individual features with some stretching.


I'll allow bantrid in my game on the concession they can't stairs like a Dalek. Bonus points if they happen to be wearing power armor at that time.


Respect the handicap ramps.


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Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
TarkXT wrote:
Respect the handicap ramps.

*In the Elephant Man wail*

"I am not handicapped! I am a bantrid!"


Because clearly what this race needs is an extra incentive to buy jetpacks.

Dark Archive

WhiteWeasel wrote:
I'll allow bantrid in my game on the concession they can't stairs like a Dalek. Bonus points if they happen to be wearing power armor at that time.

Isn't that what elevators are for?


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Big Lemon wrote:
pithica42 wrote:
kaid wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:

I'll just leave this here.

You go on ahead and tell me if you think that is broken or not.

Honestly that is probably more of a selling point for the race than a detraction. You can make some super fast moving nose wheel thing if you really spend a lot of skills/abilities focused on gaining speed. Hell I can picture this thing zooming around with its lil arms waving like kermit the frog as it frantically zooms about.
You can do the exact same thing with a Shohbad or Nuar, though. And even a goblin would only be 5ft slower if you had the same build. Frankly, if you're pushing your speed up above 100 or whatever, even the 10ft loss from being a normal human isn't any less broken.
If you want to get real freaky, a Solarian bantrid with Stellar Rush and Blazing Orbit. He can charge a total of 120ft and leave a trail of flames for the first 40 (blazing orbit as a move action, charge as a standard via stellar rush).

I was thinking the same thing. The ghost rider version of bantrid zooming along leaving trails of fire everywhere.


FormerFiend wrote:
Yeah, the sphere to me is less a wheel on an axle than it is a ball in a socket, and the real world animal kingdom is full of those, albeit nothing quite like what the bantrid has.

Yes it is more of a ball than a wheel. In the description it talks about the bottom of the bantrid that powers the ball are thousands of hairlike projections that basically grip tiny projections on the ball to move it. One interesting thing when dealing with a wheel as the form of locomotion is how to do armor. Normal creatures they are either flying via various methods or walking. All of which can reasonably be armored while the appendage is still functional. But with the ball any attempt to enclose it fully risks making them utterly immobile. Not even a force field would be that ideal for it. I guess it really depends on the sphere itself it may not even be necessary to armor it or just leave the contact point exposed with force fields as I am not sure even vaccuum would be that dangerous to the ball itself as long as you can prevent pressure loss. Other option would potentially a ball itself mounted on the bottom of the armor so the bantrids ball is rolling on top of that one which would make for a hilarious circus act look.


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DJEternalDarkness wrote:
The more I've been thinking about it, the more I'm convinced the wheel is like a pearl. Mucous or something like that (I still like my original idea of it's their waste product) that hardens. Newly budded bantrids don't have the wheel yet (and would move like slugs) until they get their first big creature poop, then they start to form the wheel. By 1 year the wheel is formed enough to start moving on their own and that leads to their life of speed.

Yes this pretty well would explain a few things about them and also explains their terror at being motionless. If it really does work like that then stopping could be painful to potentially deadly for them if it lasted long enough. They need to keep moving to keep wearing the sphere down or risk it backing up and hardening inside them which could be REALLY bad.


the actual internal mechanism is the only thing that needs the ball interaction and thats really simple. The real question is whether the power armor would use legs, tracks or spheres for the rest. Tracks are easy though not as respo sive. Balance would be an issue though a direct cybernetic link to the bantrid would allow the suit to tap into the bantrids own keen sense of balance mitigating the need for complex gyroscopics to keep itself upright.


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EltonJ wrote:
Sir RicHunt Attenwampi wrote:
Some real world bugs have evolved actual toothed gears in their legs, so I don't find the bantrids that outlandish.

Can you find an alternate article? Popular Mechanics makes you pay to read it. There has to be something on youtube to explain it. And Bantrids can't stop. If they do, they hyperventilate until they pass out.

Oops. I clicked through from a Google search results (insects with gears) and didn't get a message from PM about logging in/subscribing. Sorry.

I went with that article because it had neat animated GIFs of the gear action. Try one of these links instead:

Smithsonian Magazine
Nation Geographic Phenomena Blog
Cambridge University on Youtube (You can ignore last half of video)


Starfinder Superscriber
Sir RicHunt Attenwampi wrote:
EltonJ wrote:
Sir RicHunt Attenwampi wrote:
Some real world bugs have evolved actual toothed gears in their legs, so I don't find the bantrids that outlandish.

Can you find an alternate article? Popular Mechanics makes you pay to read it. There has to be something on youtube to explain it. And Bantrids can't stop. If they do, they hyperventilate until they pass out.

Oops. I clicked through from a Google search results (insects with gears) and didn't get a message from PM about logging in/subscribing. Sorry.

I went with that article because it had neat animated GIFs of the gear action. Try one of these links instead:

Smithsonian Magazine
Nation Geographic Phenomena Blog
Cambridge University on Youtube (You can ignore last half of video)

Which is 100% pure awesome! thanks Sir!

Also Kaid, I hadn't even thought about the effects of constipation on Bantrids! Puts a whole new fear into them and again helps explain the constant movement need.

Paizo Employee Developer

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It isn't mentioned in the write-up, but bantrids are artisanal brewers and ravenous consumers of coffee... for a variety of reasons.


Jason Keeley wrote:
It isn't mentioned in the write-up, but bantrids are artisanal brewers and ravenous consumers of coffee... for a variety of reasons.

To be a dick. Do they prefer Colombian coffee or African coffee?


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I imagine armor force fields would surround them like a cylinder, leaving the bottom open.


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Starfinder Superscriber
Jason Keeley wrote:
It isn't mentioned in the write-up, but bantrids are artisanal brewers and ravenous consumers of coffee... for a variety of reasons.

Which is perfect! The best start of waking up is exactly 100 cups of coffee, 100 cups.


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EltonJ wrote:
Jason Keeley wrote:
It isn't mentioned in the write-up, but bantrids are artisanal brewers and ravenous consumers of coffee... for a variety of reasons.
To be a dick. Do they prefer Colombian coffee or African coffee?

Neither. There preffered brew is Castrovellian Black whose strength and caffeine content is much like the wildlife, unstoppable, primal, and deadly to the unwary.


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Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
DJEternalDarkness wrote:
The more I've been thinking about it, the more I'm convinced the wheel is like a pearl. Mucous or something like that (I still like my original idea of it's their waste product) that hardens. Newly budded bantrids don't have the wheel yet (and would move like slugs) until they get their first big creature poop, then they start to form the wheel. By 1 year the wheel is formed enough to start moving on their own and that leads to their life of speed.

This would make a lot of sense. It wouldn't be too much of a stretch for a creature like a dung beetle to eventually figure out a way to ride around on their ball instead of just pushing it.


Starfinder Superscriber
Brew Bird wrote:
DJEternalDarkness wrote:
The more I've been thinking about it, the more I'm convinced the wheel is like a pearl. Mucous or something like that (I still like my original idea of it's their waste product) that hardens. Newly budded bantrids don't have the wheel yet (and would move like slugs) until they get their first big creature poop, then they start to form the wheel. By 1 year the wheel is formed enough to start moving on their own and that leads to their life of speed.
This would make a lot of sense. It wouldn't be too much of a stretch for a creature like a dung beetle to eventually figure out a way to ride around on their ball instead of just pushing it.

Thanks! These guys have been rolling around in my head as something very cool that I want to make logical and that they could actually be around.


DJEternalDarkness wrote:
Thanks! These guys have been rolling around in my head as something very cool that I want to make logical and that they could actually be around.

They aren't.


Eh, biology doesn't give much though to what is possible by convention. Just looking at the past or present ocean is all the evidence I need for that.

more links:
1
2
3

Moving out of the ocean:
4
5


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One fun thing is if they are kinda anemone like in their origins it is possible that they went from sessile an anchored to some excreted coral like substance until some adapted ways to move around on their coral until they learned to just ball it up for further mobility. Life is weird and will find some very unusual answers to basic questions from time to time.


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Starfinder Superscriber

My feelings exactly. Plus we need more wacky and weird critters here.


Starfinder Superscriber

I'm good for now. Between Bantrids, Astrozoans, Urogs, and Contemplatives, I've got my current wacky fix on lock-down. Of course, in a year or two, those will probably all feel pedestrian, and I could use some more.

Maybe the Veskarium book next March (hint hint) can have those stone-faced Squid monsters from Vesk-2 (hint hint).


Well the blurb for Alien Archive 2 suggests they won't be slowing down with the "weird" races as the three hints for playable races are " multi-legged centipede? An emotionless, mask-wearing mollusk? An uplifted bear?"

One assumes the "emotionless, mask-wearing mollusk" are the Embri, which, going by the picture of them from the CRB, we're going to be having similar discussions on how they use equipment, too.

Of course, Alien Archive had 22 playable races in it. Even if that number is halved for AA2, that still leaves plenty of room for other less out-there races.


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Life...


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...finds a way.

Paizo Employee Developer

Don't worry, you'll see some more "standard" humanoid player races in the months to come, including some old favorites!


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Starfinder Superscriber

Honestly, at this point, I think we're going to be spoiled for choice on races by the end of 2018. I know you guys have adopted the "Cantina philosophy" and I'm on board with that, wholeheartedly. But at this point we have 47 races (not including subrace options) and I'm sure you guys have already done at least another couple for the upcoming Dead Suns books and probably another 25ish between the AA2 and the 2 planned AP's for 18.

I don't want to imply 70ish races is going to be too many (cause I likes it), but if you're looking to spend pages on something, more Archetypes and themes like the ones in PW would be good, and we could always use more class options. I, for one, would love a new class (or 3). That's just my 2cr as a so far predominantly happy customer.


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It does seem to me that Starfinder is definitely on track to overtake Pathfinder in the sheer number of playable races available. I just did a count out of curiosity and including the subrace options for aasimar, changeling, dhampir, skinwalker, and tiefling, Pathfinder clocks in at 114 playable races.

Compared to Starfinder that's already at 46(though according to pithica I'm missing one) before it's first year is out.

Starfinder does have to cover more angles than PF did, though.

Specifically I divide it into three categories; 'standard' sci fi, 'weird' sci fi, and fantasy.

Standard sci fi races as I define them are the ones that TV Tropes would categorize as "rubber forehead aliens" or "humanoid aliens", the ones that could concievably be played by human actors with as little as some make up or body paint, though maybe requiring some prosthetics. Draeliks, elebrians, ferrans, kasatha, kish, lashunta, ryphorians, could go on. I expect these to be the most common type of race we see.

Weird sci fi, what TV Tropes would classify as "Starfish Aliens" is is things like the bantrids, astrazoans, barathus, contemplatives, urogs. Arguably the haan. The kind of things that show up in things like Arrival where the concern is less about budget costs & making a quick, easily relatable character that the audience can identify with & empathize with without needing to put a lot of effort into it and more about wanting to explore ideas about how intelligent life might evolve into wildly divergent forms and how we may struggle having to even communicate with it. Pathfinder didn't really cater to this category at all being that it's system was much more built around the assumption of a humanoid form and while it did have sci fi elements it was still first and foremost a fantasy game.

And then there are the fantasy races; the pathfinder legacy races in the core book fall into that, as do dragonkin, drow, space goblins, and strix. I'd argue borais fall into this category.

I kind of expect fantasy to be the least served category in the long run especially given that in terms of hypothetical races that aren't direct ports from pathfinder, it'll be debatable as to whether or not they fit as fantasy or one of the other two. The Embri, for instance, are very much a starfish alien race in terms of appearance & biology, but their theme & story is far more fantasy being tied in very closely with hell, and the diamalkans appear like grey-skinned humans, which would put them in the first category, but their culture was heavily influenced by Empyreal Lord worship & their current plight definitely seems to play up the more magical fantasy side of the kaiju genre than the sci fi side.

So these categories are very rough & mainly for my own benefit & anyone could split them up differently, but my main point is that Starfinder has a lot more options than Pathfinder did, especially with it's system not caring nearly as much about size categories or the humanoid form, and various forms of movement and environmental dependency not being as big of a deal.

I am glad to see that we'll be getting some "old favorites". Personally I'm hoping for the full spectrum of planar/outsider races to all make reappearances given that they aren't tied to any given planet but to the material world's connection to the various planes.


Starfinder Superscriber
FormerFiend wrote:
Compared to Starfinder that's already at 46(though according to pithica I'm missing one) before it's first year is out.

Not including sub-races (like bleaching vs feychild gnomes), I count 13 in the CRB, 22 in AA, 4 in the Dead Suns AP (so far), 6 in Pact Worlds, and 1 in SFS1-08. You're right, that's 46. I thought there were 14 in the CRB off the top of my head. I was probably counting human twice because I remembered there were seven in the PF CRB. That's not the first time I made that mistake. I'd go back and edit but it looks like I'm too late.


pithica42 wrote:
FormerFiend wrote:
Compared to Starfinder that's already at 46(though according to pithica I'm missing one) before it's first year is out.
Not including sub-races (like bleaching vs feychild gnomes), I count 13 in the CRB, 22 in AA, 4 in the Dead Suns AP (so far), 6 in Pact Worlds, and 1 in SFS1-08. You're right, that's 46. I thought there were 14 in the CRB off the top of my head. I was probably counting human twice because I remembered there were seven in the PF CRB. That's not the first time I made that mistake. I'd go back and edit but it looks like I'm too late.

I thought that might have been what happened, I've done that before, myself. But I wanted to check just in case I did miss one somewhere.


Starfinder Superscriber

I see nothing wrong with using the Star Wars Cantina approach to races. I remember when the Alien guide for Star Wars came out there were only like a couple dozen aliens that were not PC races. Everything else was wide open to be a hero, and I think StarFinder is doing the right thing for this.

Of course I've also made a race of Mudskippers for a water world adventure my group is heading to, so take that into consideration. :)


Plus, they seem to leaving a greater percentage of the races as fluff vs. mechanical advantages. Being Large vs. Small size used to be a pretty big deal, but now it's not, so they can go crazy with large races.


Starfinder Superscriber
FormerFiend wrote:
I thought that might have been what happened, I've done that before, myself. But I wanted to check just in case I did miss one somewhere.

Just a note. Apparently, we're going to be up to 51 in a couple weeks. I think we may be at 80+ by year end.


Honestly in a starwarsy/star trecky type setting with lots of aliens TM the more the better. None are that mechanically crazy and a lot of advantages/disadvantages kind of get muted out by common tech stuff anyway. Flight is an advantage but soon enough anybody who wants to fly can. You can breath water? Very nice but with everybody in space suits not a huge one.


Starfinder Superscriber

It's 95 credits for a gill sheath, too.


Big Lemon wrote:
Plus, they seem to leaving a greater percentage of the races as fluff vs. mechanical advantages. Being Large vs. Small size used to be a pretty big deal, but now it's not, so they can go crazy with large races.

Not to mention the hard cap of 18 for ability scores at character creation. Contemplatives, dragonkin, and shobhads may start with a better over all spread being that they'd only need a 13/14 to start with an 18, depending on their theme, but you don't have anyone starting with a 22.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

I got struck by some ideas for bantrid PCs! A bantrid operative specced for two-weapon fighting could be like a living blender with two daggers! Or give them a pair of pistols and watch them turn into a mobile gun turret...who can circle-strafe better than anyone!!!

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Oh crud, I just realized something! If you had an evil bantrid in bantrid-shaped power armor, you basically have a dalek!


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Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
Oh crud, I just realized something! If you had an evil bantrid in bantrid-shaped power armor, you basically have a dalek!

!!!


Starfinder Superscriber

you need to give that evil bantrid in power armor some form of shock weapon...

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