Creature combat is where the player character fights wild beasts while out in the wilds of a planet. When entering a new terrain square, there is a random chance that up to three herds of creatures will spawn in that terrain square.
Creatures will only spawn in surface areas that contain no other player characters or cities. The presence of NPCs, creatures, unmanned ships, and unmanned vehicles will not prevent creatures from spawning.
Leaving the terrain square will cause the creatures present to despawn, unless another player character is present. Returning to the terrain square will cause another check for new spawns.
Each creature has a specific selection of terrains on which it can spawn. This listing is found on the Creatures rules page for each creature.
There are six different classifications of creature:
Tiny - Tiny creatures like birds or rodents and often confronted in large swarms.
Small - Small creatures are roughly equivalent in size to that of a cat or small dog. Some may attack in swarms but the majority are likely to be pack-based animals.
Medium - Medium-sized beasts are often compared in stature and weight to that of large dogs and may often be found in small packs.
Large - Large beings may rival a human in terms of size and weight, and often have the strength to match. These beasts usually occur in small numbers.
Huge - Beings of great size, larger than a man, perhaps some as large as some vehicles. Huge creatures often spawn alone and can do massive damage to the unwary.
Colossal - The largest class of creature, some of these beasts can rival a freighter in terms of their size and weight. Possessing exceptionally high health, strength, and physical endurance, these are not creatures that should be tackled without preparation. Often aggressive and territorial, they fortunately tend to spawn individually. Colossal creatures are the only creature type that do not drop eggs.
Risks and Rewards
Fighting wild creatures has risks. Some beasts may be strong enough to cause significant damage to members of their party. Wild creatures cannot attack player characters unless they are first provoked outside of Derra, and they are unable to kill a player character. Instead, they will leave player characters with a single health point, at which point the player may not resume combat until they have sought medical attention. However, NPCs, droids, and friendly creatures can be killed by enemy creatures.
Of course combat is not without its benefits. Experience points are earned for attacking wild creatures in combat, and the XP returns from combat are an ideal way to level up quickly. Additionally, on defeat a creature may drop a trophy item such as a tooth or scale for the player to collect.
Finally, as of Year 13 Day 228, creatures of size huge or below have a less than 5% chance of dropping eggs. These eggs may be taken to an incubator, found in Wildlife Preserves, Zoos, and Ranches, where they can be hatched into the creature species from which they dropped. This creature becomes automatically owned by the character who hatched the egg.