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  1. GIGANTORAPTOR HAS WON! Thanks to everyone for the whopping support, I can't wait to see my big old bird child in ASA! All I need is for it to stay fluffy! Hopefully a large portion of mechanics can translate over too, if WC can find a way to balance them correctly. Yes, semi-automatic imprinting is strong, but I never liked the idea of turning a video game into a chore. ----- The Battle Nanny is back! Seeing as the concept was so well liked last time the creature contest was around, why not try my hand at bringing it back! Gigantoraptor would be a breeder's best friend, offering an improvement for play no matter the gamemode! With wild dino babies, breeding management QOL and various other features coming to ASA, the addition of this creature could really improve the lives of so many dedicated breeders! Again, not all mechanics are guaranteed, however, WC seems to preserve general vibes of the creatures submitted to these contests, and given how even Rhynio shares mechanics with its fan concept, I don't think it's too outlandish to see G-raptor share some too! I feel I've done my best to balance the creature through rigorous feedback to fit both PvP and PvE play! Lots of the previous contest winners have been all about combat and damage, and while I love me a good, dirty carnivore, it'd be nice to see the focus shift onto a more utility focused omnivore! Table of Contents 1. Artwork 2. Dossier Text 3. Potential Base Stats and Spawning 4. Taming - OSD Styled Nest Defence - Egg Steal 5. Abilities and Controls - Controls - Abilities - Gigantoraptor's Imprinting - Saddle 6. Supplementary Links Artwork MASSIVE THANK YOU to ZCI5250 for creating a fully fledged dossier for Gigantoraptor! ZCI is an incredible artist and an even more incredible friend, and I'm beyond happy to see how much the community is enjoying my submission in this contest! Hopefully this time we'll get to see Gigantoraptor come to ASA! I'll be putting my original concept art in the Supplementary Links. My concept is still near and dear to my heart, so it'll still be on this post, as it's what got me to where I am as an artist today, and sparked my passion for ARK modding and creature design! Gigantoraptor would join the Yutyrannus, being a fully feathered medium-large theropod! It would also have dramatic sexual dimorphism, males sporting huge display feathers on their shoulders and elaborate patterns on their tail fans. This would make it really stand out among the other theropods in the game, bringing something new to a group of dinosaurs usually shown as mostly scaly, combat oriented creatures in ARK. Yes, this creature has combat prowess, but it's far from your usual bruiser/chomper you're used to seeing in ARK, it's a fully fledged battle "bird"! With the graphical and technical upgrades we could expect from ASA in UE5, a large, fully feathered creature like Gigantoraptor would look incredible! I'd love to see how detailed and dynamic feathering would look with improved textures. Could you imagine seeing the weight of its big coat of feathers as this giant stomps around? Interestingly enough, there actually aren't any other dinosaurs (I mean the grouping, not creatures in general) in the game that would share the "omnivore" diet with Gigantoraptor! So I guess it's kinda unique in what it eats too! Its colour palette is based off of the Forest Red Tailed Black Cockatoo! This Australian species of cockatoo is found nowhere else, and while it definitely fits a desert theme, both the cassowary and cockatoo inspirations of the creature would fit perfectly into the redwoods as well! Dossier Common Name : Gigantoraptor Species : Gigantoraptor regalimaia Time : Late Cretaceous Diet : Omnivore Temperament : Loyal Wild Gigantoraptor is quite the peculiar theropod. With formidable claws and strong kicking legs, this Allosaurus sized theropod almost appears like an apex predator. However, in most cases, this doting parent is never seen far from its mate and clutch of eggs. Their bond seems to run far deeper than any other species I’ve observed, as whenever they perceive their brood to be in danger, it manifests into a rush of adrenaline colloquially dubbed “Mother’s Fury”. This allows them to grapple with threats far larger than other animals their size! I guess there’s nothing more powerful than a mother’s love! Domesticated Short of the incredibly dangerous task of stealing an egg from the nest, it seems the best way to gain the trust of these parents is to lend a hand! Nesting individuals tend to get quite hungry, spending so much energy protecting their brood, so will happily accept food from humans. However, predators will take their chance to steal an egg while they eat. One must defend the nest from these pesky foes, but once these are dispelled, your efforts will be rewarded! Both parents will happily follow you home, trusting someone who cares just as much about their young. Gigantoraptor make for the perfect nursery aid, as their naturally protective nature extends to any egg or newborn, even of vastly different species! I’ve even noticed them playing with all manner of babies, imprinting them with the scent of their owners! Some tribes go so far as utilising teams of Procoptodon to carry babies into the battlefield to power up their Gigantoraptors, activating a “Mother’s Fury” to turn the tide of battle! Potential Base Stats and Spawning Health: 750 Stamina: 275 Oxygen: 150 Food: 3000 Weight: 380 Melee Damage: See "Abilities and Controls" section for base damage values Torpidity: 950 Gigantoraptor would always spawn in mate boosted pairs, with both individuals being the same level. One member of the pair would randomly be assigned to sit on top of a nest structure, while the other moves freely about nearby. Ragnarok offers a variety of habitats that Gigantoraptor would fit right into, lush canyons, dense redwoods and the desert oases would all be prime locations for these protective parents to live! Taming Gigantoraptor has two taming methods, each offering its own advantages and disadvantages: - Mostly conventional egg steal (boooring!) - OSD styled nest defence! OSD Style Nest Defence: This unique taming method would require you to offer a meal to the hungry parent sitting on the nest. This part of the taming method would function like a conventional passive tame. The foods that Gigantoraptor would accept, in order of preference, are Superior Kibble, Raw Mutton, Raw Prime Meat, Crops, etc etc., though I could see it requiring Exceptional kibble given its powerful abilities. Being a small survivor, you're able to approach the nest on foot, as the doting parents don't see you as a threat... however don't run right in! Rushing towards the nest might aggravate the parents, so calmly walk up to the nesting individual to avoid spooking them, and feed them to start the taming process. While you are passive taming the parent, pesky predators will start to appear. Small creatures like Oviraptors, Troodons and Dilos will frequently be appearing (spawning in) to try to break into the nest and steal the eggs inside. Similar to Megachelon taming, you'll have to dispatch of these predators before they get a chance to attack the nest! Rarely, comparatively larger predators like Raptors, Titanoboa or even Carnos may appear to try their luck! Thankfully, the mate of the seated Gigantoraptor will assist you in battling these creatures, becoming temporarily allied to you for a time much like Carchar taming! Dispatch of the thieves attacking the nest with new your bird-like friend to complete the taming! However, be careful not to let the seated Gigantoraptor take too much damage! The damage from these predators won't only ruin your taming effectiveness, but can cause the mother and father will turn on you. The distraction of food took their attention away from its nest for too long, and they don't take kindly to anything threatening their babies! The advantage of such a difficult taming method is that, after all is said and done, you'll be getting two tamed Gigantoraptor! Both individuals will become tamed to you after you successfully protect the seated Gigantoraptor, giving you instant access to a (hopefully) well statted breeding pair! The nest will be destroyed after successful taming in this way though, so you won't get the egg.* With the AI improvements coming to wild dinos in ASA, I feel like this style of taming will be both more enjoyable and more rewarding. It'll really feel like you're fighting alongside a wild beast to earn its trust! Egg Steal: Unlike most other egg steal tames, Gigantoraptor eggs are not found in the overworld. Instead, they must be directly looted from the nest structure, like looting a beaver dam. This will force the player to have to remain stationary and make stealing the egg much more risky! In addition, these angry parents will stop at nothing to see you dead, staying aggressive even after they've killed you! This unique egg mechanic is to prevent the egg from simply being taken after taming the parents OSD style. *For handwavy lore reasons, this nest is a bit of a shrodinger's nest. Why would such devoted parents leave behind their baby to follow this human? Obviously it's because there wasn't actually an egg in the nest yet, this couple only just got their roots down. At least that's how I'd explain this balancing in non-game-mechanic terms. As another option, it could make more sense if the mate pair awarded you with a single egg for your efforts, again this is up to WC's discretion. Abilities and Controls I've considered applications for both PvP and PvE play with the Gigantoraptor. While I have done my best to balance them for official play, please note these are only potential ideas, and the Gigantoraptor’s mechanics could always be balanced according to what WC sees fit. Firstly, it would join the Maewing and Procoptodon as a valuable nursery aid, functioning like a blend of an Air Conditioner and the S+ Nanny*, incubating eggs dropped near it, feeding babies too young to eat from troughs and helping to imprint on growing dinosaurs by completing cuddle interval requests. Of course, it would require the relevant food and imprinting comfort foods for these respective actions. For example, if a baby asked for Prime Meat Jerky as comfort food, it would require Prime Meat Jerky to successfully raise imprinting percent. In addition, both wild and tamed Gigantoraptor will receive a buff when near fertile eggs and babies (any growth stage from baby - adolescent) of all species, Mother’s Fury. This buff will increase their damage resistance and damage output by 20%, and increase their speed by 10% and decrease their stamina usage by 10%. Not only will this help in the defence of nurseries from enemy factions trying to kill or steal babies, but it could also synergise with Procoptodons! By bringing baby creatures into the battlefield, the Gigantoraptor could gain an increase to their combat abilities as long as there are living babies nearby! The reason for this outlandish concept/synergy is to reward interesting strategy/play and to give some use for all those breedjects... alongside continuing the running gag of how baby creatures are treated in ARK. We stomp on them for XP, sacrifice them to things like Troodons and Carchars to tame them, and mass murder them when they don't get that stat mutation we wanted. Bringing them onto the battlefield as "ammunition" for a giant cassowary nanny's signature ability is the least of the horrors! And with wild babies spawning in ASA, if you're lucky you may not even need to bring your own powerups, you'll find them wandering around nearby! *An important thing to note here is, S+ and other similar mods could take time to update to ASA. This would mean people potentially wouldn't have access to the structures for a bit of time. Having a creature that, if the abilities were to come in the final concept, fills those roles would be highly useful and may even suit some people's playstyles more! Everyone benefits from not having to sit there and fulfill cuddle timers, it's not a skill based thing, just a massive time sink. The balance just comes in the fact that you'd still need to provide it with potentially every cuddle food option for your creatures, alongside more balance options touched on in the "Gigantoraptor's Imprinting" section. In terms of controls: Left Click : A double claw swipe. Hits twice for 30 base damage each swing. While slow-ish, its big AOE makes it great for dealing with larger targets or small groups! This can harvest meat. Right Click : A powerful kick that deals heavy knockback. The lower the drag weight of the target is compared to the Gigantoraptor, the further it gets knocked back! 25 base damage. This attack can also be performed while jumping. For how the jumping kick could look, looking at how cassowaries kick things would be a good, but terrifying, reference! C : A simple peck attack, that hits much faster than the claw swipe and is better suited to dealing with singular targets. 35 base damage. Harvests berries Spacebar : Basic Jump X : Roar/Taunt, the Gigantoraptor will flare its tail feathers and give a shrill cry. Purely cosmetic. In terms of abilities: Tamed Gigantoraptor can be told to sit via the radial menu. When sitting down, a short animation of digging a nest plays, and once seated it functions like an air conditioner and incubates eggs. (with the existence of the egg incubator and creatures like Dimetrodon, I feel like this mechanic will be a little bit less needed, and isn't as important if it doesn't make the cut were Gigantoraptor to win) With its big fluffy coat of feathers, eggs aren't the only thing it can incubate... While riding a Gigantoraptor, you'll receive a moderate boost to your insulative stats! This will make it a useful transport mount that can defend you from the wildlife and the weather! Something like +200 Hyperthermal and Hypothermal seems reasonable to me (for reference the Basilosaurus gives a whopping +562 to both stats) Seated Gigantoraptor are also able to imprint nearby dinos! See "Gigantoraptor's Imprinting" below for a more in depth look at the mechanics behind this game changing feature Gigantoraptor are the only creature attentive enough to notice when a Maewing is swooping in to steal babies! Babies nearby a Gigantoraptor will be completely immune to being stolen by Maewings, offering some counterplay to the kidnapping marsupial/monotreme/hybrid thing! This will function as an anti-theft AOE around the creature. I've been told that people don't generally use the Maewing's theft ability, but it always felt odd that something so powerful as stealing someone's breedline had no real counterplay other than "build a wall" (that could be broken down). Gigantoraptor's Imprinting: Balancing the imprinting is quite a tough one! As I mentioned above, imprinting isn't skill based, just time consuming. The point of the mechanic on Gigantoraptor is to just make it so that people don't have to be wasting time watching their pixel dinosaurs when they could do other things. Breeding is one of those necessary, but highly laborious and monotonous activities people will have to do in game. I don't think it's fun or fair that you have to be waking up every few hours to log on just to hit "E" on your growing baby because you want those extra stats. A vanilla balanced version of the S+ Nanny would save people so much time, especially for people on official who won't have access to crossplatform mods! However, automatic imprinting all the way to 100% would be very powerful, especially if you could fit a bunch of babies into the imprinting range. But, on the other hand, having the automatic imprint cap out at a certain percentage, even with lots of stat investment, nullifies the whole point of leaving one out there to do its job of imprinting if a player still needs to interact in some way (other than comfort food refuels). There's two options I can think of: Something that could apply to both of these options is a limit on what Gigantoraptor can imprint, decided by level. Simply put, it can't imprint something that's higher level than it, meaning you're gonna have to mutate your feathered friend up alongside whatever mega beast you want to breed! Option 1: Imprinting would remain the same as the original concept. Gigantoraptor simply needs to be loaded up with comfort foods and the like, and will imprint all babies in its range to complete 100% imprint. Only limit is how many babies you can fit into its range of effect, and the amount of comfort food stored in its inventory (wants to cuddle/wants to walk would just be automatic). Option 2: Imprint quality could be capped by a "Imprinting Quality" stat, functioning either like Gacha's mutatable crafting skill, or Maewing's "tamed level up only" nursing range ability. This would mean that a growing baby would still require additional input from a player to achieve the 100% imprint, unless the Gigantoraptor in question had been sufficiently levelled up. I think the best course of action would be to have this be a tamed stat to level up, but to make it possible to reach 100% imprint by levelling up this stat. Maybe it requires 50 points pumped in, maybe all tamed levels, who knows. But having it have no way to fully imprint a creature makes it a lot less useful. In terms of a cap to the amount of babies that Gigantoraptor could imprint at the same time, perhaps this could scale with the Imprint Quality stat, or even the level of the animal? One Gigantoraptor would have a certain number of babies that could be assigned to it to be imprinted. This could be something like 5-10 at base, but higher level/higher pumped Gigantoraptor are able to imprint more babies at once, incentivising the taming and levelling up of strong "imprinter" Gigantoraptor. I have received feedback before that, at the end of the day, imprinting on unofficial just isn't an issue. However, as a potential idea for WC to expand on Gigantoraptor's imprinting abilities, what if it could provide bonuses to a creature after it grows up? The way I see imprinting, it's creatures feeling empowered fighting alongside the ones that raised them, which gives a boost to their will to fight. It could be interesting if grown dinos near the Gigantoraptor that raised them got an additional buff that boosted damage and damage resistance by 20% or so. Again this is just a potential idea, stacking another way to resist and deal damage on top of imprint and the Yuty roar could get a bit much, but could offer you more incentive to tame up a new feathered friend! Hopefully these options provide enough of a framework for WC to make the decision on what would fit best in game, if the concept were to win in round 2! In terms of saddle: I wanted to avoid giving Gigantoraptor a baby carrying saddle like the Maewing to avoid overlapping niches too much, and encouraging synergistic play when using it in a combat setting. However, after some thought and feedback (editing a concept based on useful information? Preposterous!), I feel it would benefit the concept. Maewing won't be coming to ASA, according to the roadmap, until 2024, so one of the more useful breeding creatures would not be present for a very long time, so giving some baby carrying capacity to Gigantoraptor seems appropriate. The saddle would also make using the "Mother's Fury" buff a little easier, as well as making it harder to steal a baby from under its watch (regardless of the maewing anti-theft aoe). To make it not completely invalidate the Maewing though, it would only be able to hold one baby, and won't be stealing any children any time soon! This is, again, one of the many things in the submission that is up to WC's discretion. Supplementary Links Size reference for real-world Gigantoraptor (the thing is huge!). Art by Gabriel N. U./@SerpenIllus Originally planned Dave Melvin Gigantoraptor. Please note this only serves as a reference to previous concepts, and does not reflect what the final design would be: My own concept art for the creature: Forest Red Tailed Cockatoo reference:
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