Amph Are the predators a bunch of rich playboys?

Discussion in 'Community' started by beezel26, Oct 13, 2013.

  1. beezel26 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 11, 2003
    star 7
    That is why its a test. Its so dangerous that they have to push themselves to the limit. The species is bound to push themselves to the limit for their own collective survival and honor as predators. Can't be top predator without taking out the top dog.
  2. Saintheart Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Dec 16, 2000
    star 6
    This is probably going to end up in a godawful quagmire of semi-semi-movie-promo-canon-analsyis, but what the hell...

    What I got off the Predator culture is that they spend all this cash and time for similar reasons to why we "waste" so much money on justice systems, sentencing, and housing our prisoners rather than just taking people out the back of the police station and shooting them -- because it's a fundamental part of our culture and our thinking. Maybe a better example is: why are millions of dollars spent, round the world, on performance-enhancing drugs, compression suits, better sneakers, better diet supplements, in order to optimise what amounts to chasing leather and/or vinyl balls around a big green field? Well, because sport is part of our culture and as a species we like to experience vicarious battle conducted on our behalf by meatheads people optimised for competition.

    I think something similar drives the Predator culture, or indeed the Predator civilisation: they have turned testosterone into a cultural value :D It doesn't even occur to them not to spend this sort of time and investment because it's a fundamental part of their culture, probably with a massive private sector structure built around it just as there's massive private sector structures built around our major sports. To say that a culture which figures out anti-gravity or FTL must invariably be a civilised society that mirrors our own and would never spend a buck on something nonessential is seeing that culture through our own worldview and not theirs. Sure, you can say that culture is horrible and all from your frame of reference; that, indeed, is why the Predators are so alien to our own. But there's no textbook that says an alien culture has to behave as a completely rational species in all respects. Hell, economics down here presumes completely rational actors at all times and look how that turns out.

    There's also the handwave of higher technological levels than ours: costs of development and economisation may well be considerably less if you accept the idea the Predators don't just hunt humanity, but any number of sentient/sapient/nonsentient/nonsapient species across the galaxy. That's the impression I got from the menagerie in Predator 2. Not to mention that being able to block light in the visible spectrum does connote the possibility that either a lot of species across the galaxy also use light in that same spectrum, or that the Predators can adjust their cloaking shields to block light radiation outside the visible range; we can see they can shift spectra in terms of what they can see.
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  3. Alpha-Red Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 25, 2004
    star 5
    Regarding the Predator culture, I was thinking that if the vast majority of Predators embrace the hunting culture, then clearly breeding and hunting the xenomorphs is clearly too dangerous as fighting these things will result in the Predators' best warriors being wiped out in short order. Unless they're really into a survival-of-the-fittest mentality to the point where if they can't beat the xenomorphs they're willing to die and let the "superior" lifeform go on to dominate the universe.

    On the other hand, if the hunting culture is something that's embraced by just a small segment of their population (i.e. a warrior caste) then letting the xenomorphs live is also an incredibly bad idea, as they could potentially break loose onto one of their civilian worlds and wipe out the population there.
    Last edited by Alpha-Red, Oct 13, 2013
  4. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 8
    What are the racial traits of Swiss pikemen? Do Swiss Halberdiers have different racial characteristics?
  5. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 10
    I would assume that, if we're not looking exclusively as a warrior caste system, that either any Yautja that failed certain hunting tests would get regulated to other fields (and, thus, that is where the tech and other facets of their civilization would be built and operated from) or they simply rotate through roles- they are not constantly on the hunt, but maybe they take a weekend off every month from their mundane duties to go on a hunt or to support a clan/family member during a rite of passage.

    But the "pros" would be more of a regulatory institution- thus you get Cleaners like Wolf who are on-call whenever a hunt goes bad.

    As to why the high tech gadgets to begin with- well, Predators introduced the "wolf Predators" as a rival sub-species, so open conflict between the wolfs and baselines might have been the engine for military tech development.

    Presumably they were capable of determining what spectrum common prey could see in and tailored their camouflage accordingly.

    That's one reason why they have bombs and ships, probably. If Xenos get out of hand, the one responsible usually blows their bomb or a ship unleashes aerial/orbital strikes.
  6. Rogue_Ten Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 18, 2002
    star 7
    they're deffo space communists, folks


  7. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 8
    Marx. Just because he had a big beard didn't make him right. Specialisation! Comparative advantage! They're not communists, Maik. We've just seen a warrior caste. Plus some have more bling than others.
    Saintheart likes this.
  8. Darth Guy Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 16, 2002
    star 10
    I have a feeling this thread put more thought into "Predators" than the filmmakers ever did.
    Last edited by Darth Guy, Oct 13, 2013
  9. Aytee-Aytee Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2008
    star 5
    While the Preds from Predator 1-2 (and the godawful AVP films) are honorable rich boys looking for thrills (British "I Say, Old Boy" Adventurous-Colonel types)....Robert Rodriguez's Super Predators are lite-beer swilling Space-Rednecks.
    [IMG]
    Illustration Credit goes to Spill.com


    There are two races of space jockeys. The "Engineer" space jockeys are nearly human, while the "Warrior" space jockeys have human faces but also have an exoskeleton.
    [IMG] [IMG]

    Anyway, the two species went to war with each other and the Engineer jockeys won.
    The proof? Here's an Easter egg from Aliens: Colonial Marines which shows the Engineer jockey's Ovoid ship shooting down the Warrior jockeys in the Derelict in a recorded holographic interface.
  10. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

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    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 10
    While there seems to definitely be two factions, I don't think they're different species- the exoskeleton is just a bio-flight suit or military uniform. It's not they're actual/body.
  11. Aytee-Aytee Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2008
    star 5
    Look at the neck and the hands. It's part of him.
    [IMG]

    If it is indeed a suit, it's made of living tissue that has been grafted to his body.

    Which would make him a proto Yuuzhan Vong. :D
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  12. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

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    star 10
    I could see some kind of bio-graft being an option, but the neck clearly has a collar line in the design. The hands are not as clear-cut, I'll grant. However, you can still see a color distinction between the fleshy hand and the clear/purple "sleeves".

    But the other details like the shoulder "accordion", the ports for the lifesupport tubings and such and the fact that, well, he has pants on, would also suggest the whole thing is a suit.
    Last edited by The2ndQuest, Oct 13, 2013
  13. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 8
    Plus you have to think like an evolutionary biologist here; assume for a moment the exoskeleton has a defensive purpose, why leave organs like the eyes, and sensitive areas like the head, exposed? It doesn't make sense.
    CloneUncleOwen likes this.
  14. Lord Vivec Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2006
    star 7
    ....not every trait that survives natural selection has a built in evolutionary advantage.
  15. Jabba-wocky Chosen One

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2003
    star 8
    Maybe the advantages for visibility that free head movement offer outweigh the potential benefit of armor?

    Anyway, on to the main topic:

    1. @Saintheart, I agree with most of your post except the last paragraph. I wasn't trying to question why they would spend money on hunting technology. Rather, I was wondering why they would spend so much on hunting technology that was so specific to planet Earth, relative to all the other worlds of the universe.

    2. Everyone: What's with this big assumption that the aliens from Alien are so challenging to kill? From what I recall in AvP, they only struggled so much because the humans triggered everything at the wrong time, and made it into a complete disaster. Then, even with almost everything possible going wrong, don't the Predators basically still beat the aliens handily? It seems like it would've been much easier had things went off smoothly.

    3.
    I don't even see how that makes sense. They are completely different technological challenges. Witness the fact that we can make a stealth craft that are nearly invisible to radars, but we can't make a Wonder Woman style invisible jet. Nor yet are either of those two the same as erasing an infrared signature. This just doesn't seem plausible to me.

    4. From a social standpoint, I don't see why you all necessarily think that hunting is so central to their culture. Again, going back to point 2, I don't think these are supposed to be impossibly challenging tasks. In fact, I would suggest that it's probably something that's highly ceremonial distortion of what was a substantive part of life a long time ago. This is Catholics kissing the Pope's ring because the Bible tells them to greet on another with a brotherly kiss.
  16. Aytee-Aytee Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2008
    star 5
  17. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 8
    No, but certainly if you're going to develop a hardened, chitinous* exoskeleton as a species, why would you leave the brain (cognitive function being somewhat useful in combat) and eyes unprotected? I'm trying to think of analogous evolution in nature.

    * Totally just wanted to say that word.
  18. Saintheart Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Dec 16, 2000
    star 6
    Partly why I called the advanced tech more or less a handwave, or if you prefer, significantly advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, etc. Not to mention that it's not unknown for human societies (insofar as there's an analogue) to be advanced in some fields and not others -- e.g. the Romans: crap at alchemy, magnificent at civil engineering.
  19. darth-sinister Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2001
    star 9
    The Predator race aren't invincible, but they are quite capable of taking on most species without heavy casualties. Often times they succeed with little to no casualties and other times, it all winds up going in the opposite direction. When things get out of hand, they used the bomb the same way that Ripley suggested that Hicks use the weapons on the Sulacco. And in the end, they wound up letting the reactor core destroy Hadley's Hope and the Engineer's ship.

    In the beginning, they hunted the indigenous creatures of their homeworld. As their technological capabilities increased, so did the weapons that they used in the hunt. And once deep space travel was possible, they went to other worlds. As the prey grew stronger and smarter, so did they improve upon their tools of the trade. The even presumes that they rely on economics and not just doing it for the sheer sport of it, which is pretty much what they do.

    It's not about threat level. Edwin chose his victims and treated them as prey, to his hunting instincts. That is all that it takes. You don't have to be a soldier, a mercenary, a cop or even a costumed vigilante. The one in the second film was going to kill a kid, simply because he had a toy gun. Until he realized it wasn't a real gun and thus there was no honor in it. In the snake analogy, he would be a cobra. Hell, he even uses the toxic substance to incapacitate Isabelle the same way certain types of venom incapacitate the prey of the snake. It is also likely that the Predators here chose to use him, knowing how the humans tend to regard the weaker of their species. Such as Dutch trying to help Poncho after his ribs were busted and Lambert sacrificing himself so that Leona could get herself and the others out of the rear car of the train.
  20. I Are The Internets Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 20, 2012
    star 7
    If you watch Predator 2 with the mindset that the Predators only went to Earth to hunt down Gary Busey because he's Gary Busey, it becomes almost like a Greek Tragedy.
  21. Violent Violet Menace Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2004
    star 4
    You are the funniest poster here, seriously.
  22. Jabba-wocky Chosen One

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2003
    star 8
    Yes, it clearly is. Every single other target in the history of this franchise has been physically challenging to hunt. Whether through technology or anatomy, their prey are able to make a hard chase, and to be a lethal threat to the Predators. The guy in this film could do neither. There's no way he even remotely qualifies, because the sort of intellectual games you are describing are pointedly ones that the Predators have no interest in at all.
  23. Aytee-Aytee Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2008
    star 5
    [IMG]
    "Lions...Tigers...Bears....OH MY!"
  24. I Are The Internets Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 20, 2012
    star 7
    I'm actually one of the few who prefers 2 to the original. I dunno, the very ending of the first one where they show all the actors with their names at the bottom mugging at the camera makes it feel like a low-rent The A-Team episode.
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  25. darth-sinister Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2001
    star 9
    They can see mostly in infrared. However, there was a change over between films one and two, because in the first film, "Anytime" needs the helmet to filter out a lot of the heat. Notice that he sees a lot of bright reds and pinks, whereas with the helmet, it looks like thermal imaging with the background being regulated to black and blue highlights. This is gone in the four films that followed and isn't used in the comics and games like that. As to switching spectrum's of light, it is unclear if it was developed during the ten years between Central America and Los Angeles, or it was already there, but "Anytime" didn't think there was enough of a temperature change to warrant a switch. In the second film, "Danny Boy" only does because he realizes something is wrong because he can hear, but not see. In the crossovers, it is done to find the Aliens and because of the environmental conditions not being optimal. Berserker only changes because there's too much heat and uses something different.

    Beyond that, it is impossible to tell what other aliens see or cannot save, save for the Xenomorphs as we have seen their point of view in "Alien 3".

    Dutch, Harrigan, Noland, Royce and Hanzo were the only ones to actually present a physical challenge beyond their weapons. In fact, Harrigan only lasted as long because he confiscated a weapon to give him an advantage. The rest were picked off because of their weapons. Hell, Stans wasn't really a threat either. He only had a shiv and that was about the same as Royce's scalpel. These Predators were hunting a variety of men and women who were capable of killing another human, versus the others who only go after armed combatants who are in perfect health and of a certain age and not baring a child.