Visual Inspiration: Frog Lives up to Its Name

The mossy frog or Vietnamese mossy frog (Theloderma corticale) comes from Southeast Asia. (Apparently it’s known by many other names, too, like Tonkin bug-eyed frog, but that just sounds offputting, doesn’t it?)

Flickr Smithsonian National Zoo Mossy Frog

Not the only animal with camouflage to play dead when threatened, the mossy frog does it cuter than others, if you ask me. Very effectively, too, if the photo below is any indication:

Flickr mamojo Vietnamese Mossy Frog

Just think if your fantasy role-playing game had a party of player characters traveling through a clearing in a wild, overgrown forest dotted with mossy boulders, which suddenly started moving… and turned out to be huge frogs! Or a secondary world story with villagers somewhere in the boonies struggling to catch and cook these abnormally large frogs before they eat the village’s harvest.

As a total side note: while writing this post I learned that one of the synonyms for camouflage is the phrase plain brown wrapper. I’ve no idea how I’ve never come across that before, but now I know it. It’s one of the joys of language learning to me: you never really stop picking up new words and expressions. 🙂

Images: On a stick by Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Rawpixel via Flickr (CC BY 4.0). Camouflaged by mamojo via Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0).

Visual Inspiration pulls the unusual from our world to inspire design, story-telling, and worldbuilding. If stuff like this already exists, what else could we imagine?

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