Adult gryphons begin to participate in the broader world of Windsonde and may become more involved in gryphon social organization, politics, and the "human crisis". At this point in their lives they can choose one of two paths for themselves that delve into old gryphon magics:
- Humanoid Form: Some gryphons choose to gain a humanoid form they can transform into. This form can range from humanoid with gryphon features (such as a tail, feline ears, weird colored eyes, etc.) to a full human. Gryphons might choose this path in order to interact with the humans that have begun colonizing Windsonde. They may do this for the crafting and manual dexterity that comes from having human features, for the purpose of aiding their aeries during this time of apparent crisis, opening relations with the humans, or some gryphons simply think living a normal human life would be simpler and more appealing than a gryphon one. Therefore, when designing your humanoid form, you need to keep in mind how humans will perceive your character. They are not going to accept a gryphon-attributed human into their villages!
YOU CAN SHIFT BACK AND FORTH BETWEEN FORMS. This is not a PERMANENT situation - gryphons can shift forms at will, depending on how the magic affects them.
No matter how human your character is, it will still be recognized by other gryphons. It's just a sense they get...like Spidey sense.
Another thing about choosing to to be human is that your character has to LEARN to be one. Just physically changing doesn't mean you can just stroll along on two legs like it ain't no thang! (Think Ariel from Little Mermaid...first thing she did when she got legs was fall over!) Your character will suddenly have soft fleshy lips instead of a nice hard beak...and TEETH! They'll have to learn to chew...and speak...and they're totally featherless and furless and everything is probably cold. Everything will be sensitive to the touch...no more protective hide or rough leathery pawpads or thick scaley arms! No more claws, or wings or tail (usually!)...falling from heights will be an issue with no flight ability.
And human customs from the village of Dail? That might take a lifetime to master. (Think Dinglehopper!) What in the hell is a waistcoat, anyway?! ...good luck, gryphons who pick human as their final form - you have your work cut out for you! (You might, however, try to communicate with the raggedy band of homeless looking incorrectly dressed and half-naked human Skrekrill that live behind the Sea Bridle tavern in Dail....I'm sure they're figuring out this human thing at a rapid pace! ....or...maybe not.)
Greater-Gryphon Form: Alternatively, some gryphons choose to become stronger, more powerful gryphons. Their appearance in this form is slightly altered (see the species sheet HERE). Gryphons may choose this path because it can lead to greater political power that's based in physical prowess, higher status as a spiritual being (more pertinent for Twistoult gryphons), they feel being a more powerful gryphon can help them combat the human colonists, or they simply aren't comfortable with the idea of being humanoid.
Both the humans and Greater Gryphons can revert to their regular gryphon form at will.
When choosing which final stage you want for your gryph, keep in mind your aery, clan, and what kind of political alliance or goals you want your character to have. Relations with humans is a hot political issue! Some gryphons are completely against the humans and want them gone (differing on whether or not to kill them all or simply convince them to leave), some think they should open trade and alliances (seeing these colonists as an opportunity of wealth), and some are neutral and apathetic about the whole situation.
The process of becoming human or Greater Gryphon is a magical one. Your gryphon may...or may not! Have trouble with changing from one form to the other...the magic effects all gryphons in a potentially different way. Some may find it very easy to burst from human form to gryphon form and back again. Others may have trouble. Yet still others may experience only parts of themselves changing...and the rest never do! (Like Mad Queen Maud!) The experience altogether, however, is painless (no celery-crunch bone breaking noises or screaming or anything like that, etc.)