Difference between revisions of "Sex"
Revision as of 00:51, 1 December 2009
Sexual reproduction is a method of reproduction in which each individual's cells carry two copies of the genetic software, and each of two parents passes the equivalent of one copy to the offspring.
When a cell divides, the two copies in one cell become four. The vast majority of cells in a body are created with mitosis, a cell division that produces two cells, each with one pair of copies. These cells with a pair of copies are called "diploid". But each individual also has a pair of organs called gonads. Gonads are also capable of performing meiosis, a cell division that produces four cells. Once the genetic software has been copied, the copies are shuffled to contain parts of the copies from both parents. Finally, the cell divides in four, producing "haploid" cells with only one copy.
A gonad called an "ovary" produces eggs, or large cells containing most of the machinery for running genetic software. Another kind of gonad called a "testicle" produces sperm, or tiny cells just large enough to carry a copy of the genetic software and propel it to the egg. Sperm cells are suspended in a liquid called "semen" or "cum", which contains nutrients for the sperm. Individuals with testicles are called "male", and those with ovaries are called "female". These are not fully functional until an individual has metamorphosed into adult stage.
To create offspring, two adults perform a ritual called "sex". Sex rituals vary per species, but invariably they end in fertilization, the entry of a sperm into an egg to complete a pair of copies inside the egg. Fertilization can occur in one of three ways:
- The female deposits unfertilized eggs, and the male deposits semen over them. Seen in fish.
- The male squirts semen into a jack on the female. Seen in mammals and birds.
- Reverse intercourse
- The female deposits unfertilized eggs into a jack on the male. Seen in seahorses.
The development of a fertilized egg inside an individual is called pregnancy
Some species are hermaphrodites, capable of performing either the male or female role in sex. Other species have two "sexes": an individual is either male or female. The division evolved so that one sex can be optimized for pregnancy and raising offspring, while others are optimized for gathering resources and protecting offspring. Secondary sex characteristics, or the differences between male and female bodies, vary in their scope from one species to another: some species have almost identical sexes, some have larger males, and some even have parasite-like males with no purpose other than to fertilize a female. A few species are sequential hermaphrodites: they start their adult life as one sex but change to the other sex later in life.
Game world vs. real world
God uses typical in his parallel simulation. Everything above applies to both the real world and the game world, except that hermaphrodites are less common in the real world. In the rapid period of evolution after the flood, several species developed hermaphrodite sex organs as a response to population pressures.