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All About Not-Cats I: Physical Traits


General Information

While not-cats greatly resemble cats, they do bear some differences that set them apart. They are about the same size as a normal house cat, but they are much stockier and more compact, with wider legs, a shorter torso, and a larger head. Their paws bear an extra opposable thumb, perfect for writing, crafts (or crimes), and they are more easily able to stand up on two legs when they need to.

Not-cats are quite squishy and can squeeze themselves easily through small spaces. They are also known to "bounce" upon landing from a great height, and rarely, if ever, take injury from falling alone. This gives them a great advantage when climbing trees and cliffs, as they can simply leap off from the top without having to worry too much about the fall. Now, this doesn't mean it's impossible for them to get injured from falling. Sharp objects such as sticks, rocks, or brambles, can complicate their relationship with jumping off of things.

Another difference is that their more robust digestion system allows them to to eat a more varied, omnivorous diet. While they generally prefer and prioritize meats, fish, and the occasional insects, they are also able to survive on vegetables if it is necessary, and enjoy the tastes of them as a bit of a treat. That said, they still have little taste for sugars and prefer their treats to have a more earthy taste.

Not-cats express a great deal of intelligence and use a language known as Not-Meow, which consists of a number of clicks, chirps, and other such sounds.


The Winds

Rather than sex, not-cats have four different 'winds'. This can be thought of as X, Y, Both, or Neither, and is distinct from a cat's gender or the pronouns they use. These winds do come with a few stereotypes, but they are more trends and socially-constructed than a general rule. Many cats do not fit into these boxes.

The term "Wind" is also a bit misleading in that, although the cats originally believed it was such, it is not the wind that determines the cat's development, but in fact the magnetic forces of the parent not-cats, which can be either positive (North), negative (South), spinning wildly (Trade), or none (Null). Yes, this means that not-cats are magnetic.

the four winds


north wind The North Wind
Cats born under the cold Northern Winds are said to be hardy and resilient, with brave hearts and sharp claws.

When the first Northern cat was born, they ran off into the sky to battle with the stars.

North Wind cats have standard colors and are able to produce biological children with south or trade wind cats.

examples of north wind cats

south wind The South Wind
Cats born under the warm Southern Winds are said to be gentle and inviting, with warm dispositions and a benevolent heart.

When the first Southern cat was born, they were said to race after the Northern cat to keep them out of trouble.

South Wind cats have standard colors and are able to produce biological children with north or trade wind cats.

examples of south wind cats

trade wind The Trade Wind
Cats born under the spiraling Trade Winds are said to be as versatile as the wind and waves, ever-changing and forever learning.

When the two winds joined together, a cat of the Trade Wind was born. It followed the Northern and Southern cats to serve as a mediator between them.

Trade Wind cats are known to boast special dual-tone coats (either tortoiseshell or watercolor). They are able to produce biological children with north, south, or other trade wind cats.

examples of trade wind cats

null wind The Null Wind
Cats born under the silent Null Wind are said to be quiet, reserved, and as mysterious as the stars themselves.

The three original cats raced throughout the stars, leaving the Null cat behind to look after their home. But the Null cat did not mind, because without the other cats around, the world was still and at peace.

Null cats' coats are always a snowy white and they are unable to foster biological kittens. (They will have the opportunity to adopt though.)

examples of null wind cats


Colors and Patterns

Not-Cats all have large, round, dark brown eyes (like the color of a rabbit or raccoon's eyes), with only one exception. Cats with albinism (not to be confused with the snow coats of the null cat) will have a pale eye color that depends on their whitespotting type. Currently, albino eye types include Pale Red (Classic), Pale Purple (Piebald), Pale Blue (Left), Pale Green (Right), and Pale Gold (Inverse).

Not-cats come in a diverse array of colors and patterns.

Colors

Not-cat colors are divided into a couple of groups and subgroups. The base colors are either Black Group or Orange Group. Each has a corresponding dilute group, Grey and Cream. Within those four groups (Black, Orange, Grey, and Cream) there are four different levels of darkness.

Black: Black, Chocolate, Brown, Tan
Orange: Red, Ginger, Orange, Apricot
Grey: Charcoal, Grey, Smoke, Silver
Cream: Buff, Cream, Almond, Beige

In addition, there is the null-exclusive coat color, Snow.

An example of all colors is below:
examples of all colors


Patterns

Not all not-cats have patterns, but having a pattern is a dominant trait over not. Each pattern is made up of two genes that are either Striped, Marbled, Spotted, or Pointed. These can also combine to form additional combination-patterns.

All patterns are listed below:

examples of all patterns
From left to right:
Row 1 (No Pattern, Mackerel, Classic, Clouded)
Row 2 (Rosette, Broken, Spotted)
Row 3 (Colorpoint, Cloudpoint, Lynxpoint, Mink)


White Spotting

Layered over the base color and pattern, each cat has a level of white spotting. Some cats have no visible white, while others are solid white (albino). Each white mark appears on a scale from 0-10 and a category. There are five categories of white markings right now: Classic, Piebald, Left, Right, and Inverse.

All white marks are listed below:

examples of all classic white markings
Classic Group, From left to right:
Row 1 (None; Locket; Locket & Toes; Bib & Boots; Bib, Boots, & Belly)
Row 2 (Classic Bicolor; Piebald; Spotted Piebald; Freckled Piebald; Van; Albino)

examples of all piebald white markings
Piebald Group, From left to right:
Row 1 (None; Nose; Nose & Toes; Nose, Bib, & Boots; Bib, Ears, & Belly)
Row 2 (True Piebald; Scattered Piebald; Painted Spots; Confetti; Speckled Van; Albino)

examples of all left white markings
Left Group, From left to right:
Row 1 (None; Toes; Tie & Toes; Tie, Toes, & Chin; Chin, Boots, & Belly)
Row 2 (Left Bicolor; Left Piebald; Left Patches; Left Spots; Left Van; Albino)

examples of all right white markings
Right Group, From left to right:
Row 1 (None; Tail Tip; Tail Tip & Toes; Tail Tip, Toes, & Tie; Tail, Boots, & Belly)
Row 2 (Right Bicolor; Right Piebald; Right Patches; Right Spots; Right Van; Albino)

examples of all classic white markings
Inverse Group, From left to right:
Row 1 (None; Ear Tips; Ear & Tail Tips; Ears, Tail, & Toes; Snowspots)
Row 2 (Snowmelt; Ghost; Owl Mantle; Heart Mantle; Heart; Albino)



Genetics

Every Not-Cat's appearance is determined by a genetic string containing 20 different genes. Some genes use Mendelian inheritance, while others are indicated by a number scale where the offspring can be anywhere between and including the parents' numbers.

A not-cat's genetic string is hidden by default, but using the family tree item on a not-cat will reveal the string permanently. Here is a sample string, along with information on how to decode it:

[ C ] [ SN ] [ SS ] [ BOFF2 ] [ YYTS ] [ YY5C ] [ BA ] [ BB ]


Each genetic string can be separated into portions, so for the string above we have:

C - Species
SN - Wind
SS - Fur Type
BOFF2 - Color
YYTS - Pattern
YY5C - White Spotting
BA - Growth Pattern
BB - ???? Unidentified piece for future species

Species

There is currently only one species, Not-Cats, however there are definite plans for additional species. One of the core values of Cat's End is to push the boundaries of what makes a cat a cat. Some planned species include Mer-Cats, Bobtails, cats inspired by birds and dragons, and a few top secret cats that only vaguely qualify as cats.

C - Not-Cat

Wind

Cats' winds were explained above. Each cat has two genes that combine to make the wind:

N - North
S - South
O - Null

O is a recessive gene, so two O genes are required to make a Null cat. Containing both North and South genes results in a Trade cat.

Fur Type

This determines whether a cat is longhair or shorthair. Longhair is a recessive trait, so a cat needs two longhair genes to display it.

S - Shorthair
L - Longhair

Color

Color can be broken down into more broad categories. Firstly, whether each cat is in the orange group or the black group.

O - Orange Group (Orange or Cream)
B - Black Group (Black or Grey)

Additional non-natural color groups are planned.

It's important to note that the first color gene is the North Color and the second color gene is the South Color. Only the first will be used for North wind cats, and only the second for South wind cats.

In Null wind cats, all color information will be disregarded for the Snow color.

In Trade wind cats, what matters is whether these two genes match. A cat with two of the same gene will have the Watercolor type coat, while a cat with two different genes will have the Tortoiseshell type coat. In these cases, the North wind takes dominance over the South wind in profile listings. So a Trade wind cat with OB will be Orange Tortoiseshell, while a cat with BO will be Black Tortoiseshell

After the color grouping, there are two genes that indicate whether the color will be dilute or not. Dilute colors are recessive, so a cat needs two dilute genes to shift from the full color genes to the dilute ones.

F - Full
D - Dilute

The final gene is the density of the color. This is a number between 1 and 4, where 4 is the darkest color and 1 is the lightest color.

Pattern

Pattern can be broken into two categories. The first two genes indicate whether or not the cat's pattern will be visible. Hidden patterns / solid colored cats are recessive, so you need two hidden genes to get a solid cat.

Y - Yes, Has Pattern
N - No, Does Not Have Pattern

The second two genes are specific pattern genes that combine in a huge variety of ways. Each gene and combination has a unique final appearance. This is one of the areas where Cat's End genetics varies most from real-world genetics. Additional pattern genes are planned.

The genes are as follows:

T - Stripe Gene
S - Spot Gene
M - Marble Gene
P - Pointed Gene

Stripe + Stripe = Mackerel Pattern
Stripe + Marble = Classic Pattern
Stripe + Spot = Broken Pattern
Stripe + Point = Lynxpoint Pattern

Marble + Marble = Clouded Pattern
Marble + Spot = Rosette Pattern
Marble + Point = Cloudpoint Pattern

Spot + Spot = Spotted Pattern
Spot + Point = Mink Pattern

Point + Point = Colorpoint Pattern

White Spotting

White spotting genes can be broken down into three categories. The first two genes determine whether there is any white spotting. Having no white is recessive, so cats only need one white gene to show some white spotting.

Y - Yes, Has White Spots
N - No, Does Not Have White Spots

The third gene is a number between 0 and 10, where 0 has no white spots and 10 is albino.

The fourth gene is which category of white spots the pattern is selected from. Currently there are five options, but more options are planned. Additionally, a variant in which the cat has black spotting is also planned.

C - Classic
P - Piebald
L - Left
R - Right
I - Inverse

Growth Pattern

The growth pattern genes are largely hidden and do not influence a cat after it reaches adulthood. This influences how fast and at what stages a cat's stats and size will grow. Using math along with these two genes, you can determine what your kitten's final stats are likely to be.

There are three genes here which combine in various ways. Unlike the pattern gene, the order in which the genes appear does matter here:

A + A = Very Early
A + B = Early
A + C = Decreasing

B + A = Arch
B + B = Steady
B + C = Dip

C + A = Very Late
C + B = Late
C + C = Increasing


See the life stages page for more about the specific math.

????

There's a mysterious new piece at the end of the genetic string. It doesn't do anything in not-cats, but it might do something for future species... Hm........ (As of January 15 2023)

Pushy North Genes

On very rare occasion, a North cat when paired with a South cat can have one of the genes from the North parent duplicate and replace the gene from the south parent. It is speculated that this is due to the magnetic pull of the Impact and Nestor's Wood being located to the north of it. Theoretically, not-cats born south of the Impact would have the south cat's genes behave in a similar manner.

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