A creature's biochemistry is the collection (sum total) of its chemical reactions. A realistic biochemistry with analagous chemicals, emitters and receptors to the real world is a big part of making creatures act realistically, because when their brains are linked up to monitor chemicals they can decide things like "maybe it would be a good idea to eat some food when my glycogen level is low".
This is also a good place to look when creatures are behaving oddly, as a mutation may have caused a positive reinforcement loop in their brain regarding ideas like walking into walls.
In Creatures 2 and Creatures 3, some of the genes involved in biochemistry depend on the organ that contains those genes being alive: so heavy metal poisoning or other diseases can cause a creature to lose some important biochemical reactions.
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- Biochemistry Set (C3/DS)
- A good illustrational overview of creature biochemistry
- Norn Biochemistry 101: A peek inside a Norn - the nitty gritty
- GEN File Format - Biochemistry at the CDN