I started pulling some references from nature that I'm going to try mashing up into some kind of imaginary creature.
I'm thinking it will have the general frame/shoulders/chest of a gorilla-shaped animal, the spiky tail of an Ankylosaurus, maybe some sloth-like claws, and the cuteness factor of a wombat (to balance out the ferociousness of some of its other components).
I'll update this project as I dig into ZBrush!
FRAME / SHOULDERS / CHEST
AND A PINCH OF SLOTH (BECAUSE WHY NOT?)
ALSO, the markings and patterns on this critter are pretty cool. This might come into play when coloring.
Here is a super rough sketch of how this might come together (didn't try ZBrush yet):