StarCraft® II

Primal Zerg: There can be only one!

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It's not only one, but a social darwinianism instead of swarm logic of collective action. They don't have a connected collective conscience, so they resort to pack structure with alphas and their beta enforcers.
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Why can't they just share or trade essence? Just a social convention and paranoia of other pack leaders?
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Why can't they just share or trade essence? Just a social convention and paranoia of other pack leaders?


It doesn't fit the dog-eat-dog storyline that Blizzard used. The whole idea of the zerg is that the harsher the conditions the better their evolutionary result. What doesn't kill you is the theme they're going for. Just go with it, sit back and enjoy the ride.
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Why would they share or trade essence when one could try for ALL the essence? Plus the alphas didn't exactly seem like the most sharing kinds of people... alien... things...
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It's just that essence is digital information. It's like trying to stop media piracy... not really going to work.

An alpha could find some special mosquito that went and got essence and brought it back!
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The primals do share essence... within their own pack. That's why they form packs in the first place. Follow a strong leader, defeat stronger foes, become stronger faster.

Sharing essence with the entire species is a nonstarter. During the evolution missions, Abathur usually requires a certain minimum amount of biomass to effectively apply essence. The same is likely true for the primals. A single drop of blood isn't enough to copy an organism's natural abilities.

The other problem is supply. The Primal Zerg's primary food/essence source is each other. As weaker packs die out, stronger packs become targeted. Even if the six strongest packs worked together to form a sort of essence monopoly, they would still eventually turn on each other again when there's nothing left on the planet but them. Part of the reason why Dehaka joined Kerrigan instead of fighting her is because he saw the writing on the wall. His pack was the smallest and weakest. The only way he could survive is by finding alternate sources of essence, beyond his own planet.
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Hydralisk essence digivolve to ---- Lurker.
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I'm not sure if only one is exactly true past a certain point and honestly getting to the ancient one's size, while you are powerful your sheer mass comes with drawbacks.
Edited by Anvos on 3/20/2013 1:44 PM PDT
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03/20/2013 08:55 AMPosted by McSantos
Sharing essence with the entire species is a nonstarter. During the evolution missions, Abathur usually requires a certain minimum amount of biomass to effectively apply essence. The same is likely true for the primals. A single drop of blood isn't enough to copy an organism's natural abilities.

Essence is just DNA, right? The Zerg have a fancy name for it because they're aliens, and because they turned the xel'naga "purity of essence" thing into a religion. But it's just DNA. When Abathur needs more than one sample, I figure it's because there are multiple versions of the genes, and each organism only gets him 1 or 2, and sometimes that's not enough of a working example for him to adapt it to the Swarm.

Unless the Zerg don't store DNA like we do! Maybe every cell isn't identical. Then maybe you really would have to eat almost the entire organism to get samples of all the relevant DNA.
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Unless the Zerg don't store DNA like we do! Maybe every cell isn't identical. Then maybe you really would have to eat almost the entire organism to get samples of all the relevant DNA.


If you pay close enough attention to Wings of Liberty, this is probably true.

Click on the zerg specimen tank in the research lab in each stage of research. Stettman's observations reveal some of the pseudoscience Blizzard put in behind the Zerg.

Edit: I just blitzed through the zerg research tree of WoL (with cheats - I don't think anyone could legitimately rack up 25 zerg research points that fast.) and took notes from the Zerg Tank text:

5 - reveals cells all have every strain of zerg known, plus a bunch more. 25 reveals one of these is the overmind strain.
10 - their muscles can work without a brain to control them; burrow is low frequency vibration of lots of surface muscles. (How that works with a carapace is unclear, plus low frequency seems backward - high frequency would have a more dramatic effect, I think)
15 - The point I was trying to remember - zerg have "a basic dichotomy to cellular reproduction." Type A cells mutate like mad, seemingly randomly. Type B hunts down and destroys mutations from Type A. Survival of the fittest in cellular form.
20 - There's no cellular degredation by age - they live forever, they just mutate a lot.

15, along with how zerg and primals behave with "essence" in HotS, suggests to me that zerg bodies, after digesting food, take chunks from the DNA of the prey and splice it into their own DNA somehow, rather than reducing it as far as humans (and everything else on Earth) do.

Seems more or less in line with how Primals work. The first cutscene of one shows it eating something and then changing itself. (I'll forgive the classic pseudoscience mistake of genetic modification resulting in immediate and obvious changes to the body...most of the DNA that makes a specific form is only really activated during development in the mother's womb...or egg, or whatever. So changing your DNA drastically won't grow you a third arm, but it'll give you a kid with 3 arms.)

Abithur just brings engineering into things - tidies things up, etc. Funny how primal units are more powerful than their Swarm equivalents, then. (Or at least, Kerrigan's Drop Pods army can do a hell of a lot more damage than a similarly sized pack of normal units.)
Edited by Milamber on 3/20/2013 4:29 PM PDT
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03/20/2013 03:27 PMPosted by Morsk
Sharing essence with the entire species is a nonstarter. During the evolution missions, Abathur usually requires a certain minimum amount of biomass to effectively apply essence. The same is likely true for the primals. A single drop of blood isn't enough to copy an organism's natural abilities.

Essence is just DNA, right? The Zerg have a fancy name for it because they're aliens, and because they turned the xel'naga "purity of essence" thing into a religion. But it's just DNA. When Abathur needs more than one sample, I figure it's because there are multiple versions of the genes, and each organism only gets him 1 or 2, and sometimes that's not enough of a working example for him to adapt it to the Swarm.

Unless the Zerg don't store DNA like we do! Maybe every cell isn't identical. Then maybe you really would have to eat almost the entire organism to get samples of all the relevant DNA.


I think that's part of it.

But another consideration is that cells can become damaged upon death, or exposure to the atmosphere. It's fairly easy to make DNA worthless for purposes of cloning/assimilation.

And whatever internal process primal zerg's bodies use to assimilate DNA probably requires at least a little bit of experimentation to successfully integrate into their own sequence. The more samples they have, the more their bodies can perform trial and error until they find something that works.

The way I assume it works is that, when a pack leader kills a rival, he continues consuming it until some biological signal in his body tells him that he's eaten enough healthy DNA to gain all of the creature's strengths and superpowers. He then leaves the rest of the carcass for his subordinates in the pack.
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The primals do share essence... within their own pack. That's why they form packs in the first place. Follow a strong leader, defeat stronger foes, become stronger faster.

Sharing essence with the entire species is a nonstarter. During the evolution missions, Abathur usually requires a certain minimum amount of biomass to effectively apply essence. The same is likely true for the primals. A single drop of blood isn't enough to copy an organism's natural abilities.


Given that they evolved the ability to absorb DNA from other organisms, I have no problem with the concept that they do so very inefficiently. Nature tends to be sloppy and does just enough to get by, like a government contractor.
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Abithur just brings engineering into things - tidies things up, etc. Funny how primal units are more powerful than their Swarm equivalents, then. (Or at least, Kerrigan's Drop Pods army can do a hell of a lot more damage than a similarly sized pack of normal units.)


Some of the primals are more powerful, but they don't have special capabilities seen in the swarm Zerg.
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Some of the primals are more powerful, but they don't have special capabilities seen in the swarm Zerg.


Ahh, makes sense. I have to admit, I never got around to stat comparisons. The only time I really noticed is when I abused drop pods in the final mission and tore through the uber-terran units like a hot knife through butter. (Ability efficiency makes drop pods and leviathan both very useful, since the cooldown is the same as the unit lifespan)

Admittedly, Kerrigan's other capabilities, as well as the ultralisk-hydralisk army did their fair share. It just seemed like they were more effective than an equivalent number of even raptor strain zerglings would have been capable of.
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i have the doubt, how do they reproduce? i mean they only kill and kill so what do they do to mantain the numbers of their species?
Edited by nombik on 6/27/2013 12:31 AM PDT
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Most likely they have some sort of Zerg-like system going on but on a more localized scale. In the first Zerus mission there was some mention of hive-cluster like organisims, which likely function much like traditional Zerg hatcheries.
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In the first Zerus mission there was some mention of hive-cluster like organisms, which likely function much like traditional Zerg hatcheries.


And those hatchery like organisms are big primals. So does that mean they give birth? Or eggs?
Edited by Handtoss on 6/29/2013 5:11 PM PDT
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Instinct, I'd imagine. Kind of like wolves, they could go solo, or ally together and pool their intelligence and strength. The thing is, I don't think when they consume someone they get their intelligence or memories. 2 minds are better then 1 leading to a team, then when the team gets big they'll need a leader to pull things together in the end.
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