By DagdaMor – Rhino sizes.png, based on File:Rhino size comparison.jpg, CC BY 3.0; modified slightly by me.

So, just as I said in passing in a previous post, I have been thinking about what should be ridable animals in a setting where there are alternate versions of Earth that have never before seen humans. In that post, I discussed the ridable bears. Well, in the above image there are three animals that are now ridable in SaSS:R, two of which have not been seen on our Earth for many thousands of years (I deleted the names of those two, because I’d rather work without explicitly stating the scientific name, as that shall be different in the SaSS:R setting, and they will have varied from what our Earth saw by many thousands or millions of years.) I will say that both of them come from Asia, both are (rather obviously) rhinoceroses, and that they are tame rather than domesticated.

They are not alone, however. The woolly mammoth and saber-toothed cat also make appearances. Basically, I want a kind of mount for every occasion, whether it be war or strutting down the street showing off your power and wealth to the locals. Pleistocene megafauna, and a few things even older, are a vast source of inspiration, and I am hoping to make riding megafauna from the Empty Earths a thing. The fact that the main focus is on mechs and armed and armored airships is besides the point (at least for me.) There are still going to be times where it will make more sense to ride something big rather than drive or pilot something big. For instance, both mechs and aircraft have maximum travel distances–in fact, they each have two. Between needing to change out the minerals that make them possible and fuel considerations, aircraft and mechs have very definite infrastructure requirements, or else need to carry their own spares and extra fuel (thus drastically limiting what other useful things they can carry.)

So, to sum up: I am going a little bit mad with the possible consequences of the SaSS:R setting and what it can all mean for characters, but nothing unusual is occurring. I’m pleased as punch to be making any progress while 1) my wife is in the ninth month of waiting for the arrival of our third daughter; and 2) I am working very irregular hours and my commute has lengthened.

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