CFF Chichi Norns vs. TWB Bloom Norns
So, since I'm not sure quite what I want to do yet, in reference to the last entry here and my decision to redo the Abyss Dragons, I decided to do a couple of feral runs - keeping an eye on them but generally leaving them to their own devices, and in somewhat more challenging circumstances than I usually set up. Basically, I wanted to give both a CFF breed and a TWB breed a couple of good solid test runs, to see how they function in practice as opposed to how they look when scrolling through the Genetics Kit. After some thought I decided to use the CFF Chichis, since I had them already, and the TWB Blooms, since they were the only TWB breed I had already downloaded. (I probably should have used CFF Blooms as well, in retrospect, if nothing else than to be a control group of sorts. Oops. I guess I'll do that tomorrow.)
I expected the Blooms to ultimately be superior, not only because I like the additional edits added to them by their creator above and beyond the TWB edits, but because I have such bad associations with the original Chichis. I fully understood that the CFFs would be better, but I still couldn't help thinking of the Chichis as they were back when I first had Docking Station alone without C3 years ago. But I did my best to set things up more or less fairly if not exactly evenly. Two males and two females were made of each breed. The Chichis got to go live in... oh, drat. The big jungle-y metaroom. Veridian, maybe? Something to that effect. And the Blooms went to Norngarden 1.
Obviously Veridian was not stock since it doesn't come with anything in it, so that would've been pointless. I did not, however, stock the room very generously, compared to my usual style. I did my best to seed golden mushrooms and popper plants (they died out fairly quickly though, the poppers even before the Norns were added - sigh). The Mossy Shee Trees survived rather longer but still eventually died out as they always do. It figures the plant agents I like best are the ones that refuse to get established and the ones I don't like are the ecosystem-devouring weeds... Anyway, the Chichis have a potted Rainbow Bamboo that provided some growth of that species as well. So there was some "native" food even after the other stuff I tried to establish died off. But for the most part, there was no effortless forage available after the initial group extincted the mushrooms, which took all of ten minutes or so.
As you can see in the above screenshot, the vast majority of the Chichis' food relies on them knowing to work the vendors when hungry, or at least randomly pressing them for shiggles often enough to provide sufficient food, whereas the Blooms had the benefit of the Norngarden's built-in agents, plus a few added agents (they also got a Cornucopia for example).
To my not-very-great surprise, the Chichis were very fecund and bred rapidly. What I WAS surprised by was how well they managed to take care of themselves and be happy in the relatively bare room. They found the fairly widely-scattered toys and played with them, worked the vendors often enough to provide food for the group even as it grew bigger (I can't tell if it's hunger-related or random but they don't sit there spam-pushing it, pushes are single and seem purposeful).
Meanwhile, the Blooms surprised me by crashing and burning. All four were dead by the time the Chichis were producing their first second gens and I don't think a single egg got laid in the Norngarden.
I'm going to give TWB another few tries before I choose CFF over it, but man, what happened to those Blooms? I might have to do another set and actually watch them closely this time to figure out why they died off. So far though the Chichis have shown that they would definitely be an acceptable base for the Abysses - with a suitably lengthened lifespan and slightly reduced fecundity, though!