Mordray

Rosharan Spiders? or their equivalent?

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So I've been doing some Stormlight Archive fanficing when it suddenly occurred to me... I can't remember any references to spiders or webbing...

I'd like to use the imagery within the story, however, as this story is told from the perspective of the character, I'd rather only use it if the character is aware of these possible elements.

 

So does Roshar had spiders or their equivalent?

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Just imagining what a Rosharan spider would look likes terrified me. Some horrifying, eight-legged, shelled creature swinging through the air with webs.

There might be some cremlings that might fit that description. Or the Sleepless Aimians who could make different types of cremlings.

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@Mordray The scene in Edgedancer where the Dysian Aimian Arclo dispatches the 2 Skybreaker squires has some descriptions of their bodies being wrapped up in some silk like webbing, but I don't know what kind of cremlings those were.

And welcome to the Shard, have an upvote.

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Honestly I don't think there is an exact spider equivalent but there are probably some species of cremlings that are somewhat similar to them. 

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What have you done?

i absolutely hate spiders; and now u cant stop thinking about rosharan spiders. If b.sanderson writes one in i´ll blame you for my nightmares.

 

on topic: i dont remember it being mentioned. You could make up your own if you want!

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we haven't seen anything like spiders on roshar, no reason for them to be there (except in shinovar). there are probably some similar cremlings, though.

No webs, however, at least not in the east. webs are for catching flying things, and there aren't any in the east. creatures build thick carapace to protect them for storms, and that make them too heavy to flight

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My apologies to those with arachnophobia, I sometimes forget that such a thing exists... none of my fears 

I've sort of side stepped the native elements within my current draft by having the character reference the land of Shinovar as the source of his knowledge.

My method of writing is basically me struggling to describe the movie/show I can see in my minds eye. In this case it was a shard blade with a webbing pattern on the blade.

King of nowhere, That is a good point, though not entirely complete. While most webs we see are in fact for catching flyers there are a number of other uses. For example there is a species of spider that spins its web between its four elongated front legs to create a net. Trapdoor spiders use their webbing to create their namesake trap doors that they hide under before pouncing upon anything unlucky enough to get too close. There are a number of spiders that live underwater and use their web to trap bubbles of air that they use for  Another use is as an anchor/safety line... actually in the setting of Roshar having the capacity to create anchors as needed would likely be beneficial.

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Remember, Brandon designed the ecology of Roshar to be specialized and adapted to the brutal environment of constant storms and deadly winds. It might be plausible to have spiders migrating underground to shelter from storms but really that isn't creative enough to fit the magnitude of the world building done in these novels. Take this with a grain of salt because I'm no expert in this, but I'm sure these are spiders who already do that IRL. So it would be pointless to have spiders in Roshar when there are opportunities for grander creations :D .

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The cremling that Kaladin and Tien play with in one of his flashbacks, that I forget the name of, seems to spin a cocoon of webbing-like substance that dissolves in water, so I would assume that spiders perhaps evolved divergently, with their characteristics being spread across different species?

Unless a spider could spin a web as strong as Spider-Man's webbing, with the tensile strength stronger than that of a steel cable, then I doubt a cobweb would last in a Highstorm...

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@Barbarian AL, there are spiders who burrow in real life, but they burrow into soil, not solid stone.

@ScarletSabre, I think that was a frog, not a cremling. And that probably wasn't webbing, like spider silk, but an entirely different substance. Spider silk doesn't dissolve when wet or harden.

Also, spider silk is proportionally stronger than steel, but it is so thin that that doesn't really mean much IRL. On Roshar, however, where the spider-things might be bigger, and if they'd adapted to making exceptionally thick threads, it could be much different...

Also, look up some prehistoric creatures (like eurypterids and Pterygotus) which were related to spiders. They couldn't spin webs, but they were aquatic. And they'd also fit Roshar perfectly.

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I like spiders, and I agree with a lot of things that people have said on here, so I'll just post a few pictures of spiders with carapace/hard body parts, just to give people an idea what sort of "carapace" spiders have and how it might look on cremlings. The thing is, most spiders don't have a hard abdomen, so it's difficult to say what a Rosharian spider might look like.

The last image is a random thing that I found, and could possibly be a cremling spider look-alike.

 

Spider.jpg

Spider 1.jpg

Spider 2.jpg

Spider 3.jpg

Spider 4.jpg

Spider 5.jpg

Spider 6.jpg

Spider 7.jpg

Edited by I am Witless
I LOVE excuses to share pictures of spiders.
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Most traditional spiders spin webs to catch flying insects. Now correct me if I am wrong, but I don't think there are very many flying insects in Roshar. The frequent Highstorms and Weepings would have a high threshold for species developing flight and thus also making it less likely for convergent evolution to make a spider like organism that makes webs.

Edited by shadowwisp
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Also now I'm envisioning a Worldhopper accidentally bringing some terrifying invasive species to Roshar.   We've already got a "plague". 

 

17th Shard Headquarters:

"Lt. Reman what are these reports I'm receiving about a spider invasion on Roshar?"

"We're.....not sure my lady.  It's possible Clau had taken some with him as pets and they, um, escaped. And, uh, flourished."

"Does NO ONE listen to my lectures on ecological preservation techniques???"

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On 5/13/2018 at 11:58 PM, shadowwisp said:

Most traditional spiders spin webs to catch flying insects. Now correct me if I am wrong, but I don't think there are very many flying insects in Roshar. The frequent Highstorms and Weepings would have a high threshold for species developing flight and thus also making it less likely for convergent evolution to make a spider like organism that makes webs.

 

On 5/10/2018 at 7:11 PM, Mordray said:

That is a good point, though not entirely complete. While most webs we see are in fact for catching flyers there are a number of other uses. For example there is a species of spider that spins its web between its four elongated front legs to create a net. Trapdoor spiders use their webbing to create their namesake trap doors that they hide under before pouncing upon anything unlucky enough to get too close. There are a number of spiders that live underwater and use their web to trap bubbles of air that they use for  Another use is as an anchor/safety line... actually in the setting of Roshar having the capacity to create anchors as needed would likely be beneficial.

 

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Id be interested to see how big they would get with lower gravity and higher oxygen on Roshar. 

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@Xtafa, They'd likely be bigger than they were about 300 million years ago during the late Carboniferous and early Permian periods.

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The lack of spiders in Roshar is a missed opportunity, I think, now that you point it out.  They seem like they would be naturally suited to the harsh environment (as long as the spun their webs on the leeward side of houses and plants), and some of them have carapace body parts as @I am Witless pointed out.  Insects in general is an area in which most fantasy authors fall short, I think.  For being the most numerous lifeform IRL, you hardly see any insects in fantasy worlds, and when you do they are usually flies or beetles or something - insects we are used to, instead really fantastic unheard-of species.  Brandon focused on with crustaceans in Stormlight, and birds in Sixth of the Dusk, but we haven't seen a lot of insect species in his books.  The cremlings in Stormlight are sort of insects, but they are just "cremlings" - not a lot of variety there (even though there is a lot of variety within the cremling species).  

I just thought - a good example of gigantic, fantastic insect creatures in a fantasy world is the Studio Ghilbi movie Nausicaa if anyone has seen it.  The whole world in Nausicaa is overrun by enormous insects and a toxic jungle.  And of course as far as spiders go, there is always Shelob from The Lord of the Rings.  

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@Llarimar I think part of the failing is the apparent seeming mundanity most regard insects combined with the number of individuals that fear them. I play a number of ARPG's and one of the most common mod requests you find with them is to get rid of spiders... the second most seems to be the removal of spider webs. That might just be my observational ability but those with these fears seem rather vocal about them.

Nausicaa, was a long time favorite of mine. Sadly my own imagination and capacity for self editing of memory has long since ruined it for me. Shelob, sadly was just an over sized spider.

Ancient anthropoids had rather spectacular physical variety and capabilities. These were eventually selected out of existence by environmental pressures.

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Diving bell spider is a species of spiders that lives underwater, and use its silk to create a diving bell (thus the name). Maybe spiders on Roshar are acquatic and lives in coastal environments (and / or at purelke) ? They can survive storms underwater

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diving_bell_spider

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I think within the world of Roshar spiders fall under plausible. I don't think "silk net to catch flying insects" spiders are viable on Roshar, however a lot of the variants people have pointed out could be viable on that planet. If something spider like didn't evolve naturally on Roshar, I can imagine a Worldhopper brought one with by accident, and it adapted to its environment over time.

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Roshar is modeled after coral reefs. 

So Rosharan spiders would probably be giant crab things with webs. 

I'm going to go cry now. 

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