Age is a complex question in the world of our game. In accordance it has resulted in a rather large file having been developed.
Where can I find the rules that apply to cat age here?
The age rules for Clan Cats can be located on THIS page.
Why is 50 Moons considered an appropriate age for an elder? That’s not even 4 years old!
Feral cats are not quite the same as domestic cats. Their life is much harsher than your average domestic cat.
Domestic pets are fed by their owners, groomed, sheltered… Feral cats have to fend for themselves. They are subject to battles, hunger, weather, wounds and diseases in a way a domestic cat will never be. That in and of itself causes them to age faster, and with age comes failing physical abilities. A cat that can no longer perform warrior duties for the clan as he once did is bound to become an elder in most situations. That cat is no longer fit to serve the clan as a warrior. He has become a liability, and thus should not keep his warrior rank. He turns into an elder, respected for his wisdom and experience, but no longer acting as he did on his young age.
But is there a fixed age for a cat to become an elder?
No. Some cats age faster, some slower. Use common sense. A cat who has a complicated life is prone to become an elder earlier than a cat of the same age that leads an easier life – much like the domestic cat/feral cat idea. Nonetheless, as the cat ages, he will start having all sorts of ailments and physical failure. You cannot expect your 50 moons old warrior to be as fit as a newly made warrior. His joints will ache in the cold days, his eyesight will not be so keen, his reflexes are slower… He is gradually heading toward his place among the elders.
How does in-character retirement work?
A character that is on the brink of becoming an elder may undergo in-character retirement. He is too old to be useful to his clan as a warrior – and so, the warrior rank is taken away from him. He becomes an elder, honored among his clan. He has no longer required to perform warrior duties, and can spend his last moons enjoying the rest he has deserved throughout his life.
Out of character, the rank of your cat will need to be turned to ‘Elder’ in the character viewer. You may do so by editing your character page.
What happens if a cat refuses to retire?
If a cat refuses to retire (such as by refusing to respond affirmatively during the retirement ceremony) in a situation where continuing as a warrior is beyond their physical abilities the leader is within their rights to retire that cat despite their disagreement. The safety of the cats around them would be placed in jeopardy if they continued as a warrior, and the good of their clanmates is considered more important that the mere desires of one cat.
Can my elder sire or bear kits?
The short, simple answer is yes.
The long, in depth answer is yes, on the condition that all supporting RP is in place and your cat is physically fit enough to handle what may come. Keep in mind the older a cat is the more likely that complications will occur. The complication chance percentages are detailed in the Litters Department.
I don’t want my elder character to die, but I want a new character and need the slot!
Elder characters do not count against your character limit.
You can have as many in-character promoted elders as you want. Keep in mind that excessive numbers of IC elder promotions will not be tolerated (due to realism requirements, we can’t have a single player using all available elder slots within a single group).
When do kits start using the dirt-place?
At around 3 weeks old, when “‘Litterbox’ behavior practices begin”. More details can be found in our Clan Cats Age Document.