Given that you’ve mentioned many times that shipgirls have super-human physiology, what does this mean when it comes to food? I know you said that they don’t actually eat metal and fuel. Do they need to eat more food than a normal person?
I kind of feel that I’ve answered this one before. But, to clarify:
- Technically, shipgirls may not need to eat. If we’re going to get down to it, shipgirls are capable of fully metabolizing any nutrients that they eat just like ordinary people. However, this isn’t necessary to their survival. From an in-universe perspective STEC doesn’t understand it. They tend to just think it’s got something to do with the rest of a shipgirl’s powers like fairies.
- A shipgirl’s appetite is on par with healthy young women of their physical sizes. They aren’t particularly unusual. Exceptions do exist. Taste profiles are different as well, though it largely conforms to expectations from their respective cultures. Most Japanese shipgirls have little to no aversion to say, raw fish. However, they might make faces at how much sugar is in some of our desserts. Many American shipgirls will eat anything you put in front of them, but upon closer inspection you might find more than half leave things like cabbage or mutton uneaten.
- That being said, you can’t just not feed your shipgirls. They get grumpy and moody just like the rest of us and performance will obviously degrade under these suboptimal conditions. STEC isn’t going to run braindead type experiments like the Nazis or the Japanese did to see what happens when you starve a shipgirl. If you do, breaking news: they get hungry.
- STEC suspects that the deterioration in performance is largely psychological rather than physiological. Some shipgirls basically live off of the worst combination of diet and lifestyle (see below) without any changes in physiology. (This makes sense if you think about why they showed up to begin with. Whoever created the shipgirls in the first place obviously have thought about this too, considering that they possess exceptional traits such as durability. If the Abyssals are experts at out-attritioning humanity, then you want to do everything you can to minimize attrition, right?)