So, I tried to understand which dragon form will suit best for my world: the classical reptilian (a) or unique giant insect design (b). Initially, I was firmly convinced that the insectoid dragon will do the best as I thought out that The World of Oominor was originally inhabited by invertebrates solely, but then I realized that need to understand my world better before giving a final verdict.
What is Oominor then? Well, first of all, the word Oominor originates from Rachana (Rachna) language, meaning Earth. Before elves, humans, dwarves, ogres, or even insectoid races, the Oominor was inhabited by pre-magi precursors that went extinct for an unknown reason, leaving behind cities settled by trespassers. But all of the new sentient races that colonized the intact world were not just simple frontiersmen. Around 5 000 years before the modern era a portal through The Border World connected to Oominor, opening a constant bridge between two realms. The Border World or also known as the Spirit World – is a plane of the fifth dimension that is inhabited by alien critters formed of pure energy, commonly known as spirits. The spirits fed on neurological energy created by thoughts of living organisms. Soon spirits found out that utilizing sentient beings for this purpose was a better brainchild. Every 100 or 200 years they started opening warp-holes to other dimensions, each being the alternative version of Earth where different intelligent life had a different ancestral background. The new races started colonizing Oominor as fast as possible. Some spirits began to possess newcomers' bodies using them as hosts and in return, they gained the power to bend the world with the power of fifth dimensions which Oominor people claimed to be magic.
With the arrival of sentient life forms, other animals also traveled via the connected portals threatening the original ecosystem with extinction. So, right now, I don’t know what the original animals of Oominor are, maybe the mammals never happened there and the most advanced critters are some forms of Placodonts. I don’t know. Oominor is another version of Earth and it’s interesting to speculate how evolution turned to a different path.
But right now, I’m still thinking about dragons… I’m not sure what to make of them. If you have better suggestions than insect or lizard, please share.
How come I haven't seen this before? Weird thing.
Either way, dragons. So, considering which species exist I would say that, technically, anything goes, and that you should be able to add extra limbs to reptile/lizard-like creatures and just call it done. Viola, a dragon.
Still, some more things to consider...
How would the dragon hunt? Paw size and shape depends on this. Do they grab prey from the air? Well, they'll need something resembling fingers, and likely some long claws too. If they eat insects or grass or such, they won't need those claws. This will also change the head. Do they need large eyes to see prey from far away? Ears, maybe? What's the shape of the teeth?
How much would they fly? This changes the size and shape of the wings. Do they soar for hours? Huge wings, then. Do they have to turn quickly? Much narrower wings, like falcons and seagulls. Do they only fly for shorter amounts of time, like from one tree to another? Well, they'll likely have way smaller wings.
How large are they? This will change what they hunt. Larger dragons will take larger prey, will need larger territories, etc. Of course, you can have many different species here, in different niches.
How do they attract mates? I would guess larger size plays a role. Maybe you have horns, or other courtship displays. If you have feathered dragons (because why not? There were feathered dinosaurs) you might have fancy feathers too, at least during the mating season.
Now, to other types of dragons. I found the insectoid one fun too - if you have insectoid centaurs, then why not insectoid dragons? They have the wings already, after all. I presume there will be different species here too, with different hunting tactics. Maybe some stealth hunters, resembling a giant praying mantis. Maybe some airborn hunters, like dragonflies (and look up dragonfly nymph jaws too. Imagine a dragon with a jaw like that).
I myself am still a bit partial to wyverns, and how those would be more realistic than the standard six-limbed dragons... I think I've explained that one before, though. Else it's mentioned in my "existence of dragons" text in my gallery.
And, of course, which such diverse fauna there's nothing which hinders you from having several types at once too, after all. Tiny insectoid dragons and larger lizard-like ones, for example. Or, because why not, the opposite way around
Thank you again for your extremely helpful description!!!
Just a few days before I thought: "Well, why not make dragons evolved from the different lineage of vertebrate animals whose fish ancestors utilized six limbs?" After all, the whole idea of Oominor existing is that most of the creatures traveled there from different versions of Earth. So I made this rough sketch two days ago:
I'm not if it's visible but as you can see the dragon appears more alien and with a fish-like form. The wyvern on the other hand is 100% reptilian. Thus, they are not even related to dragons XD Also, you may have noticed that I'm thinking of altering the griffin's appearance and take down the sixth limbs (wings) and make them more realistic. It means that ll the griffin species I created before are not canon.
I still need to think about the dragon's physical form though, I kind of imagine them as fish-eating animals flying close to shores. Not sure...
I love the idea of a fish dragon (The males totally need a long frill along their neck which can look smaller and larger depending on their mood. Perfect to threat displays, or to attract a mate.)
The wyvern also looks good... a little front-heavy, maybe. It's not too noticeable right here, due to the pose, but still. I might have given them a longer tail.
Makes sense with the griffins too, and I like their new look. A little pity that bright heron-like griffin isn't cannon, though I really liked them.
Also, your sketches look nice. Mine are a bit more messy, like this:
If you're thinking of a no-wings griffon, you might want to consider giving them a gliding mechanism, like a flying squirrel. Although that probably wouldn't work realistically with the size of the creature, so maybe just smaller variants. I love the short little tail, it looks cute. I could imagine one of those big boys acting like a puppy and wagging at his trainer.
I'm a big fan of the lizardy-dragon. The Piscean dragon design has a great wing and leg ratio structure, but the reptilian design has a great paw structure and overall a very iconic, striking design.
BeckyKidus, your sketches are super dynamic! Love them. Your griffons are awesome!
Have you thought about going further back on a theoretical evolutionary tree? Maybe some kind of Anphibioid or myconoid dragon? Maybe some kinda silicone based creature that looks similar to organic crystal shapes?
Of course there is part of me that says I think it would be neat to theoretically have a evolutionary tree where dragons and centaurs (maybe also kobolds/goblins?) share a common ancestor, maybe have a beetle or bee type dragon? (which gives you a chance to go with a few different styles of dragon to fit different roles/growth cycles/sexes)
Oh yeah, I thought about it before. If you visit my first design of Fantasy Animals Of Oominor you’ll see that I mentioned the dragons as completely new class of animals. Thank you for your comment, I’ll definitely think about it.
insectoids would make the most sense, assuming theres a very high concentration of oxygen in the atmosphere. of course, another possibility is that one (or both) of the creatures arrived from another universe along with the sapient races. you could have both of them coming into the universe from separate universes. in the end it all comes down to design.
you could have giant flying fish that demolish everything in sight if you want.
ok, i didnt know about the lung thing. but, insects still make a lot of sense. they have high (really high) birth rates and mutation rates. their exoskeletons also tend to be very light, making it easier for them to get big while still retaining flight. even fire breath is checked out. the bombardier beetle is capable of blasting a scalding hot blast of heat, and some species of ants are even capable of exploding to defend their homes! im tellin you, insects make sense from a biological standpoint.