Critter World is the world + ruleset of Dungeon World and an animal-only universe.
Races and Societies
The world is composed from the following guidelines, though they must be loose to account for the incredible variety of animals players may want to play as:
- All races for PCs are a current animal on Earth.
- Animated things such as golems, are never a PC.
- Societies fall into two groups which do not mingle, hunters and gatherers.
- All carnivores implicitly fall into hunters.
- Omnivores typically give up their carnivorous side and eat only as an herbivore so that they can mingle inside gatherer society.
- Hunter societies can contain multiple-hunter species and it is not unheard of to eat one of their own.
- Gatherer societies consider it a great crime to eat another animal even if it was killed by a hunter as this causes fear among the herbivores of the society.
- All races are normalized in size to be between four and eight feet tall. So the moose and elephant are eight feet tall and the mouse and gopher are four feet tall. Players may choose variance within such as being a tall mouse or short moose.
- All race are prehensile in some way. Animals like the moose with hooves are assumed to be able to grip things with a single hoof such as a pen for writing. The snake is assumed to be able to grab things with it's body and operate them with the dexterity required to write. Typically try to avoid grabbing things with your mouth.
- Dungeon World's ruleset allows us to skip over race specific characteristics and it is up to players and DM to decide if your race provides a boon or bane to the action you are attempting.
Setting and Technology
The setting is a typical fantasy world. Magic of all types is available with it's typical associations (dark arts are not popular with others). Technological level is that of a pre-steam engine society. The only forms of travel are boat and walking. Most animals are typically quick in relation to humans allowing them to travel by foot greater distances. Carts do exist and can be pulled by animals but those animals would be sentient, consider it more like a palanquin with humans than a cart with a mule.
Wild or Feral Beasts
It is known and accepted that there are wild variants or most animals. These wild variants are dumb in the sense of a typical wild animal in the human world. These wild variants are significantly larger in size, such as a twenty-foot-tall bear or a gorilla that can tear trees from the ground. These beasts keep away from civilization as they are driven off like most animals of the human world.