Ants vs. walktapuses

From: Ian Gorlick (igorlick@nortel.ca)
Date: Fri 30 May 1997 - 23:50:00 EEST


V.S. Greene ( klyfix@aol.com ) suggests that ants eating walktapus might become
infected by chaos themselves.

I accept the possibility of that. Chaos is certainly capable of manifesting
almost any power at some time in history. A taint transmissable by consumption
would be sure to occur sometimes. However, I don't think that this would likely
affect an ant colony much. Ant colonies are highly ordered places. Any deviant
ant would quickly be identified by the normal ants and destroyed. Even a queen
who is defective can be replaced by the workers.

If somehow the deviant ants were not detectable by the normals and managed to
take over the colony, then they still would be wiped out by their neighbours. A
colony requires each ant to perform its orderly functions as part of a larger
organism. This just won't work if the ants are tainted by chaos. Even if the
colony doesn't tear itself apart as the chaotic ants war against each other, it
will lose out in the competition for food because its ants can no longer
cooperate as well as neighbouring colonies.

It isn't official, but I think of Gorakiki-Ant as one of the important chaos
fighters. Her role is the mopping up actions after the big guns have finished.
She manifests the rune of Law (the social order of ants) and uses it to destroy
chaos. It fits in with ants' general role as clean-up crew to the world.
Starting from this viewpoint, it is easier to assume that ants have a special
resistance to corruption by chaos.

The idea of a chaotic ant colony does sound fun. So it has to happen at least
once, so that the adventurers can encounter it. But it isn't going to be a
common problem.

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