Sagan 4 Alpha Wiki:Frequently Asked Questions

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Questions about Sagan 4

Q: What is Sagan 4?
A: Sagan 4 is a collaborative worldbuilding project where contributors make new species that evolve from previous ones.

Q: I don't understand, can you compare it to something I know about?
A: Sure. Imagine playing Spore's creature stage, but instead of using the creature editor to evolve your creature, you draw it and write down what it does. That's pretty much what we're doing.

Q: Where can I find all the species?
A: On this wiki. Head over to the Main Page to begin!

Q: I don't want to make species, but I still like looking at the art. Is that okay?
A: Yes! You don't have to make species to enjoy Sagan 4 or participate in our community, and we'll like having you around regardless.

Questions about making/submitting species

Q: How do I submit a species?
A: Your first species should be posted as a reply to this forum thread. The format for submissions can be found in the first post of the rules.

Q: My art isn't very good, can I still make a species?
A: Most likely, yes. Sagan 4 accepts artists of all skill levels; we consider being able to tell what a creature is and where its body parts are to be more important than how pretty the art is. There are also many options for species that are easier to draw.

Q: I already drew a creature but I don't know what the ancestor should be, can I submit it?
A: Probably not. The chances that your original concept has a matching ancestor are pretty low, as even our most generic creatures are a little bit different from their counterparts on Earth. For example, we don't really have anything quite like a bird. We recommend looking at canon species for inspiration instead.

Q: But my species is really alien!
A: Sorry, but in that case, there may not be anything even close to a matching ancestor at all. We do have some pretty wacky aliens, but they still might not have the right number of legs, eyes, or other features to match your pre-made concept. Again, we recommend looking at canon species for inspiration.

Q: What kinds of creatures are there for me to make?
A: There's many! We have been working on introductions not only to all living groups of creatures, but also plants and microbes as well.

Alternatively, you can view the full list of every single living species in every single biome here--but be warned, it's really long!

Q: Can my species be sapient/tribal stage?
A: No, species with human-level intelligence are reserved for special events. However, you can make species that are smart and can make and use tools, similar to non-human apes, crows, dolphins, and other smart animals. Just make sure it's obvious that it's still just a smart animal.

Q: I don't understand what you mean by 'evolve', can you explain it?
A: The answer is long; 'evolution' in the context of Sagan 4 is explained with examples here.

Q: Why can't my species have an extinct ancestor?
A: If a species is marked as extinct, it literally has no living representatives for your species to evolve from, even if its extinction was very recent. For example, in real life, it's impossible for a descendant of the woolly mammoth to exist 1 million years from now, because no living woolly mammoths exist to evolve into a descendant.

If this seems confusing, consider the aftermath of an extinction event: when a huge comet struck between generations 124 and 125, no new species evolving in generation 125 could descend from any species that were wiped out by the impact event. Likewise, in real life there was no chance for descendants of Triceratops to appear after the asteroid that killed all non-avian dinosaurs. The same applies to smaller extinctions too, such as from one species outcompeting another.

Q: What if there are secretly survivors?
A: Barring a wiki editor messing up and marking a species as extinct when it wasn't, this is impossible. We keep track of all species that are alive at any given time, even ones in secret, hidden locations such as caves and abyss.

If you think there was a mistake, you should contact a staff member before making a descendant. There might be a cause for extinction that you didn't see.

Discord-specific questions

Q: Can I submit my species through Discord?
A: No. We tried this once and it was a mess. Species need to be submitted through the forum instead.

Q: Why is every species on Sagan Bot extinct on the wiki?
A: Not all of them are, but you are right--most are. This is because the bot is very far behind, still being on species made before 2008. There were multiple mass extinction events between then and now.

Q: Why is Sagan Bot so far behind?
A: There are well over 5,000 canon species. All of them have to be added by hand. This only takes a few minutes per species, but those minutes add up, it's exhausting, and there are other things that need to be done, so it's low priority.