Tatanka | World Anvil - Isekai Codex

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Livestock of the Cradle of Clay

The rolling hills of the Cradle of Clay hold many stories, tucked in valleys, wandering over the soft peaks. Here amongst the storied lands, animals and people live together and serve each other, one as a blessing of the goddess Rerena and the other as a shepherd, one saved by the act of caring for another. From the largest Tante and Hillbreds to the livestock and small creatures that roam, the Clay Giants are shepherds and investors into the ways of animal husbandry.   Dedication to animal husbandry by the Clay Giants shows most in their work with the Tatanka, a massive breed domesticated and bred from the extremely large Tante that roamed the Cradle of Clay. These beasts had few enemies other than the Dinosaurs that would sometimes wander into the hills from the Great Plains to the south. For a large race like the Clay Giants, having hardy livestock that could easily take care of themselves was a necessity as these people established their place outside of the hierarchy of the Giants.   Early Tatanka were much smaller than their ancestors, often only five and a half to six feet at the withers, considerably smaller than the Tante that stood nine feet at the withers. Over the last few millennia, the Tatanka have gotten larger and more like the Tante that became extinct during the days of the Eldritch War. Breeding and raising practices hoped to make a sturdy stock that could handle the worst of days in the Cradle of Clay, something that would survive another horrendous war and feed those that needed it most. The Tatanka were the answer to the problem of old and the problem of new.

Basic Information


Tatanka are large creatures, with the males reaching lengths of up to eleven and a half feet from head to rump, while the females reach lengths of up to slightly over nine feet. These beasts can reach nearly seven feet tall at the withers, and a weight of over two thousand pounds in males and slightly over fifteen hundred pounds in females. Their size makes them one of the largest herbivores in Vóreios, although they are not considered prey animals by any means.   These animals have a shaggy, long winter coat, and a lighter weight summer coat that varies in shades of brown depending on the age of the Tatanka. Darker colors often denote an older creature while the lighter browns, often those similar to the dying grasses of fall, are commonly seen on calves and yearlings. This lighter color allows some camouflage from predators such as wolves that may take advantage of the smaller Tatanka.   Tatanka are known for having a thick skull and short curved horns that allow them to fight and gore most creatures that would threaten them. Their large size, horns that can grown up to two feet long, and a speed of up to thirty-five miles an hour, very few predators in the Cradle of Clay dare mess with the Tatanka, even in packs.

Additional Information


A giant creature with a heavy, shaggy coat, the Tante were once one of the largest herbivores to roam across parts of the Northern Continent but sadly became extinct due to the events of the Eldritch War.
The Tatanka were not the first animals the Clay Giants atttempted to domesitcate for use as food when they moved to the Cradle of Clay. Smaller livestock, such as the Black Stout, were the first to be domesticated, serving as a great source of sustenance. These cattle were not necessarily large enough to provide for the large size of the Clay Giants so domestication of further animals was necessary.   The Tante were a perfect animal to be domesticated by the Clay Giants as these creatures were massive and could provide a great deal of food and other products. Standing roughly nine feet tall at the withers, Tante were one of the largest herbivores in Vóreios, but there were dangers associated with raising and keeping these creatures. The span of their horns was massive and deadly to most that dared get too close.   As time passed, it was decided to begin to bred some of the smaller Tante to create a breed that would still be large, but easy enough to handle by a single Clay Giant. Over the course of millennia, those in the Cradle of Clay worked to build their herds of smaller creatures, eventually creating the Tatanka through selective breeding. These creatures were extremely similar to their ancestors the Tante, but only stood between six and seven feet at
the withers. This breeding was deemed a success as it essentially created a miniature version of the Tante with the same qualities.   The Tatanka became the most important source of food and a variety of goods in the Cradle of Clay. While the Tante still existed, the remaining herds lived their days wandering the hills, only serving as a food source when issues arose, such as rampant disease. The herds of Tante numbered roughly two to three hundred until the Eldritch War wiped out the remaining creatures.   Since the extinction of the Tante, the Tatanka have been slowly increasing in size, but in miniscule amounts. It is believed that the Tatanka are attempting to fill a place in the Cradle of Clay that was left empty by the death of the Tante, but no one is quite sure exactly why after millennia the size of the Tatanka is increasing like it is.

Uses, Products & Exploitation

While originally domesticated for a stable food source, the Tatanka have become useful for a number of goods that the Clay Giants use daily or items that are exported to other areas of the Northern Continent. The Clay Giants do not believe in waste as their time amongst the Giants made them used to living on nothing more than scraps. Over time, they attempted to find uses for all pieces of the Tatanka as it seemed to be a way to honor the goddess Rerena.   Cradle-Fed Beef is by far the most common product that comes from the Tatanka. This meat is known for its impressive marbling, a trait that stems from the variety of plantlife the animals eat. During the summer months, Tatanka roam the Cradle of Clay, grazing on a variety of prairie grasses. The winter months bring the Tatanka Roundup which means a diet of grains and minerals. This diet causes the telltale flavor and marbling that makes Cradle-Fed Beef nearly melt in the mouth and burst with a variety of flavors that can be amplified through the cooking process.   A variety of other goods are made from the Tatanka, including powder horns from the large horns of the animal that are most commonly exported to the Human Empire, bags and water bladders created from tanning and sealing organs, rugs, coats, and other clothing from the tanned hide and hair, and utensils carved
Cradle-Fed Beef
Cradle-Fed Beef can refer to meat from either the Black Stout or the Tatanka from the Cradle of Clay. While this meat is a staple of Clay Giants' diets, it is also one of the largest exports from the area other than Arcane Dust.
from the heavy bones. Products made from the Tatanka are the second largest export of the Cradle of Clay behind Arcane Dust as the processes used to tan and seal, carve, or otherwise make the objects allow them to stand up to heavy use. Even the Dwarves who are lauded as excellent craftsmen utilize certain products made by the Clay Giants as they serve an important purpose when mining.
Bison by RiverFang
Tatanka are large creatures descendant from the giant Tante that once roamed the Cradle of Clay. Breeding efforts of the Clay Giants led to the first Tatanka.
Genetic Ancestor(s)
10 to 20 years
Average Height
6 ft to 6 ft 7 in at the withers
Average Weight
700 lbs to 2500 lbs
Average Length
9 ft to 11 ft 6 in without the tail
Geographic Distribution
Related Myths

Dietary Needs & Habitat

Tatanka can be found in only one place in Isekai, the Cradle of Clay. As herbivores, Tatanka subsist on grasses and shrubs but their size dictates the need for wide open spaces. The mix of Big Greystem and other prarie grasses provide an optimal food source for the creatures, with supplements of salt and other minerals left out by the Clay Giants.   During the winter months when the prarie grasses are dormant or harder to find under the heavy snow, the diet of the Tatanka is mostly Cradled Wheat and other grains that the Clay Giants have harvested and stored throughout the warmer months. While the Tatanka are capable of surviving without the assistance of the Clay Giants, this special winter feeding and other care has grown the herds and made the animals far better prepared for illness and low food stores.

Tatanka Roundup

The Tatanka Roundup is a yearly event that occurs in the Cradle of Clay. During this event, Tatanka from across the hills and corralled in a central location at Tantes Hollow so that herd numbers can be documented, proper nutrition through the cold winter months can be given, and the animals can be vaccinated against common diseases that have destroyed parts of the heard in the past.   Wasting Disease is the most common disease that is vaccinated against during the Tatanka Roundup. This disease causes the horns and hide of the animal to rot while it is still alive, and at one point roughly a thousand years ago, this disease caused the herds to become almost extinct. Vaccinations have allowed for zero documented cases in the last fifty years.  
Tatanka Roundup
Tradition / Ritual | Mar 1, 2023

The yearly Tatanka Roundup is an event planned, prepared, and looked forward to for months, minds turning to the winter event as soon as the last hours of Harvest come to an end.

Storybook System Creature Sheet
Name Tatanka
Form Quadruped
Type Beast
Size Large
Location Cradle of Clay
Heroism Points
Land 5
Climb 0
Swim 2
Fly 0
Jump 3
Strengths & Weaknesses Tatanka are immune to the following conditions: None.

Tatanka are large grazing beasts that can be dangerous in herds due to the fact that they can trample a single threat repeatedly until it is sufficiently disabled. As a singular creature, a Tatanka is still dangerous because it can cause sufficient damage if it knocks a threat down. Restricting a Tatanka's movement is often the best course of action to subdue it.
Skills Increased Stamina - A Tatanka can run for great distances over the course of a day without the need to stop and rest as long as it keeps a steady pace.

Thick Hide - Tatanka possess a thick hide that cover their strong body rendering it difficult to cause heavy wounds or dangerous bleeding. When resisting the Bleeding condition, it adds 5 to its Resist attempt.

Exceptional Senses - Tatanka possess exceptional hearing and smell, even if a threat is being quiet they can often be detected by other means. When using hearing or smell, a Tatanka's Observation Rating doubles.

Gore & Trample - A Tatanka can gore a target, knock it down, and attempt to trample it in the same action as long as it has moved more than 10 feet (2 spaces) before taking the Attack action.
Behaviour In the Cradle of Clay, there are large creatures often domesticated by the Clay Giants. The Tatanka are grazing beasts that are resilient to the cold, possessing thick fur and powerful bodies. They are found both in the wild and in captivity as livestock in the rolling hills of the Cradle. The domestication of these animals is well-known throughout the world of Isekai, but in their wild herds, they are considered dangerous due to the possibility of stampedes. Hunting these creatures is no small task, often taking precision and large ranged weapons to handle the task without incident to the hunter.

Tatanka will roam widely as they are capable of trampling most threats while they are in a group. They exhibit average intellect for livestock and understand what a creature their size is capable of doing and capable of ignoring for the most part. The exception to this is their taste for the flower of the Geyser Lily and its vines. Many a Clay Giant rancher has found themselves with the chore of cutting a Tatanka loose from a mass of vines when it strayed too far.

During combat, Tatanka will gore and trample whatever is opposing them, using immense weight and a running start to make short work of many things that would threaten them. In a group, they will often attempt to charge a threat, the foremost of the beasts knocking the threat down while the rest trample it soundly and leave little fight in whatever sought to prey upon them.

The typical method of attack for a Tatanka as a singular creature is to charge and gore a threat. The beast will also trample a target that has fallen and is still considered to be a threat. This creature often loses the tendency to fight if it perceives a threat that can out-muscle it or restrict its movement greatly.


  • Tatanka use Might to attack. A Tatanka charges or gores with its horns, if it moves more than 2 spaces before taking the attack action then it will attempt to impose the Knocked Down condition on its target, the resist rating for this is the same as its attack roll.
  • A Tatanka will trample a target that has the Knocked Down condition.


Tatanka will usually set their body or position their thick skulls and horns against an incoming attack to block with Might.


A Tatanka will seldom dodge attacks unless they are fleeing from a fight.
Difficulty Difficulty Level: Medium (somewhat difficult for a party of 4 Tier 0 Characters)

To Increase Difficulty: Increase the number of Tatanka by 1 for every 2 additional party members.

Possible Encounter Ideas: Tatanka can be utilized in a variety of types of Combat Encounters. A traditional Combat Encounter would require the party to fight a Tatanka and take a great deal of damage whereas a puzzle Combat Encounter can be an instance of problem-solving to capture a Tatanka without injury.


Author's Notes

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