#char Riftazer 12 0 SM: -1 12 +1 DX(No Fine Manipulators(-40%)) -30 -3 ST 8 Acute Hearing: +4 -5 Chummy 5 Claws: Sharp -10 Colorblindness 10 DR: 5(Only Vs Falling Damage(-60%)) 15 Double-Jointed -10 Impulsiveness(SC: 12(×1))* 5 Night Vision: 5 15 "Balancing Tail" — Perfect Balance(15) 2 Reduced Consumption II(Water Only(-50%)) -8 Sleepy: ½ 1 Temperature Tolerance: 1 1 Perk: Fur 1 Perk: Milkwater Reserve * Replace with Cowardice for females and males.
Riftazer are smallish feline humanoids, except for articulated ears resembling bat wings. Their body length is mostly legs and tail, and their fur is brown mottled with red, white, or black. They're native to equatorial rocklands, which are mostly covered in desert sands, except during the flash floods of the monsoon season. Unlike terran cats, they're not carnivorous, and get much of their water from plants. All three sexes also lactate a thin "milkwater".
Riftazer once used a eusocial pride structure, with one female, one male, and a few workers; but when their technology took up copper and then iron, the numbers of workers born shot up, and it hovers near 90% for modern riftazer. Tension still exists because of a divide between "prides"(marriages which include a breeding pair) and "septs"(marriages which don't, and may be entirely workers). A riftazer litter is 2-6 cubs.
Riftazer workers are somewhat brash, and in the Riftazer Systems Alliance minor points of etiquette are routinely resolved via duels to first touch — but still with live blades, and most workers of Status: 0+ will have a traditional "moon sword" in a closet at home. It's possible(and reasonably common for females and males) to decline these duels, conceding the point on the spot, but they're perhaps the single most common social encounter, and rarely indicate any malice.
#char Indari 28 0 SM: ±0 20 +2 IT -30 -3 ST 18 +3 ST(No Fine Manipulators(-40%)) 11 Claws: Long Talons (on feet) 20 Clinging 5 Extra Legs: 4 Total -10 Curious(SC: 6(×2)) -5 Overconfidence(SC: 12(×1)) -1 Quirk: Attentive 0 Feature: Oviparous
Indari are roughly centauroid, with two arms and four rock-climbing legs. Their leathery skins are pale green with vibrant stripes, which they often augment with body paint. The head is low and broad, with a crest on each side of several hollow sounding chambers.
Their ancestors lived on sea cliffs, split by the delta of the massive Iarn Tif river; while this biome lasted, the river's twisting produced rapid changes in the biomes upstream, and the proto-indari evolved to adapt. When the cliff face grew too eroded for them, they moved out over the land, out-thinking larger predators and building better and stronger nests instead of standing guard over their eggs. From this start they've launched to starfaring in a scant 20k-30k megacycles, and are pushing the leading edge of the modern techbase.
Their large heads support brilliant minds, and indari scientists, researchers, and explorers are renowned. They're somewhat reckless in following their insatiable curiosity — they need to know not only what's going on, but why, for how long, and when it's likely to happen again… and if they can't find out safely, unsafe methods are available. Fortunately, ethics oversight committees are well-developed among the indari, albeit driven by the somewhat recursive urge to investigate applied ethics. The indigenous indari culture is almost extinct, and the only indari who mind are the anthropologists and linguists who don't think they've studied it enough. Having little desire to rule, the indari used a system of "governance providers", whose implementation was sloppy and self-contradicting. Tiresome governance jobs for indari have been replaced by small-time politicians of other species, who've integrated most indari worlds into other governments.
#char Karsikan -8 0 SM: -1 10 +1 HT -30 -3 ST -4 Appearance: Unattractive 10 3D Spatial Sense 4 Binding: 1(Reduced Range: ×1/10(-30%), ROF: 3(+50%), Engulfing(+60%)) -50 Blindness 10 Common Sense 22 Flight(Controlled Glide(-45%)) 17 Scanning Sense: Imaging Radar(Reduced Range: ×1/10(-30%), Targeting(+20%)) -3 Skinny(No Skill Penalties(-40%)) -10 Squeamish(SC: 12(×1)) 15 Unaging 1 Perk: Feathers
Karsikan are small hexapodal fliers, feathered but closer to bats among terran life. Unlike terran bats, they're blind, relying mainly on radar. They're nocturnal, adapted to hunt small metallic insectoids by night, shooting a fast-drying adhesive(like terran velvet worms) from reservoirs in the long muzzle. During the day, they sleep and eat fruit; they prefer to sleep in structures akin to the fruit trees of their ancestors. The body tapers forward over the head to a muzzle convoluted with many organs — phased radar pits, nostrils, protein papillae, and vestigial eyes crowd together, which may have evolved because the resulting face is "slippery" to imaging radar.
Due to their natural radar and need to travel light, they invented fire starting before fire keeping. Early semi-nomadic living fragmented their native troupe structure; their technology slowed considerably once cities became necessary, until computers allowed them to form the technocratic "adhocracy" that rules to this day, the Karsikan Standards Combine.
Karsikan have thoroughly embraced post-privacy transparent society, and combine a philosophical insistence on economic independence with a pragmatic cooperation. This attitude ironically leaves them best-suited for dealing with alien attitudes, and the Combine includes the largest trading corps. Career criminals are rare… but likewise crime on the side is fairly common. Karsikan just aren't that comfortable with rules.
With modern technology, karsikan often clean their hands as an idling activity, and generally see filth as an act of rudeness, rather than a default state which sentients can get away from. Midday baths are the main social event, with morning and evening baths for bonding with family.
#char Nethlei 46 0 SM: +1 -20 -1 DX 15 +3 Will 45 +5 ST(Size(-10%)) 10 Amphibious 8 Claws: Talons -15 Dependency: Immersion In Fresh Water(Very Common, Daily(×3)) 10 Doesn't Breathe(Gills(-50%)) 5 Immunity: Starvation(Drops Into Torpor Rather Than Dying(-50%)) -20 Low Empathy 3 Nictitating Membrane: 3 9 Night Vision: 9 0 "Wide-Set Eyes" — Peripheral Vision(15), No Depth Perception(-15) -5 Weakness: Immersion In Salt Water: 1d/30min 1 Perk: Scales
Nethlei are amphibious humanoids with pale, shiny, hairless skin. They have large, bulbous eyes, long arms, stubby legs, and clawed and webbed hands and feet. Their skin and eyes are a pale greenish-gray, though their bellies are white. They have scaly ridges on their backs, jaws, hips, and joints, and over their prominent gill slits.
Nethlei are "from" the middle of the food chain, and their smaller ancestors still dwell in lakes along the Toros River, but their predators were rendered extinct before the nethlei invented writing. Their lack of talent — and interest — in socialization gave them trouble establishing civilization, but once established they took readily to it. The Tarat/Bhai Codominion is not popular to visit, but as the saying goes, at least the locals will leave you alone. Citizenship in the "wrong" half of the Codominion can render one a social pariah, but the differences between the two are ignored by outsiders.
#char Sarnteil 2 0 SM: ±0 20 +1 DX 5 +1 Per -2 -1 HP 15 Discriminatory Smell 11 Claws: Long Talons (on heels) 3 Nictitating Membrane: 3 3 Night Vision: 3 1 Teeth: Sharp -20 Bad Sight: Nearsighted(Non-Moving Objects Only(-20%)) -10 Colorblindness -10 Compulsive Behavior: Siesta(SC: 6(×2)) -10 Gregarious -3 Skinny(No Skill Penalties(-40%)) -1 Quirk: Carnivorous 0 Feature: Oviparous
Sarnteil are seven-foot bipeds, slender and somewhat birdlike in movement and posture. Their smooth skins range from pale green to almost black; they have scales(usually in a complementary color) along the backs of their limbs, spine, scalp and cheeks. Their huge eyes are black and liquid; they have three fingers and a long thumb on their hands, and three toes and a sickle-shaped claw on their tough feet. Their inability to resolve non-moving objects is a neurological effect, not an optical one, so corrective lenses don't mitigate their Bad Sight.
Sarnteil are adapted to hunt larger and smaller prey; they cooperatively "gather" the prolific furry varmints among the grasses of their home pampas, and they team up to hunt its large reptiles. Their crepuscular lifestyle seems to be in response to a competitor/predator in the form of "pounders", a category of large tyrannosaur-like reptiles. This combines to produce the stereotype of sarnteil fond of curling up with a stranger to sleep off lunch, which has some basis in truth. Sarntail are cheerfully fond of company, and on a spaceship will often take on cooking or the like as a side chore, in order to create a big friendly social event. En masse, the sarnteil have carried this to an "agglutinative" government, the United Sarnteil Republic.
#char Terso Kita 91 0 SM: +1 20 +1 DX -10 -1 HT 18 +2 ST(Size(-10%)) 10 Amphibious -10 Bad Smell -5 Chummy 11 Claws: Long Talons 15 Discriminatory Smell 20 DR: 4 20 Enhanced Move: Ground: ×3 5 Extra Legs: 4 Total 20 Innate Attack: 2d cor(Follow-Up: Bite(+0%)) 8 Innate Attack: 1d cor(Melee Aura(+50%), Always On(-20%), Blood Agent(In Reverse(×1), -40%)) -10 Paranoia 2 Reduced Consumption II(Cast-Iron Stomach(-50%)) -3 Skinny(No Skill Penalties(-40%)) 10 Temperature Tolerance: 10 -30 Vulnerability: 3× Corrosive Basicity 0 Feature: Botanogenetic
Terso kita(or just "kita") are plated centauroids, fractious but deadly. Despite their insectoid appearance, they actually have internal skeletons, and the "exoskeleton" is all armor. What appears to be the mouth is actually a sort of blast shield for the mouth stalk, which supports the radula. The radula's "teeth" are diamondoid, and given time they can scrape through nearly anything, including advanced armor. Each hand has four blunt-clawed fingers and two scythe-like talons, which they use as weapons, or to hold a target while they scrape away at it with the radula. Their blood contains sulfuric acid, maintaining an acidity typical of their world, but which can be an unpleasant surprise for any attackers. Their four-legged stance is augmented by a long balancing tail, which makes them quite fast over land, and the tail also helps them swim in a serpentine fashion.
Terso kita have a complex life cycle. Every adult asexually produces spores, and in damp and acidic conditions they can grow into tree-like gametophytes. Once a gametophyte has reached its adult stage it's consecutively monoecious; in male years it produces pollen, in female years it produces a "root bulb", from which a wormlike larva hatches. The larva are ravenous, but avoid their own species, eating the green parts of all other plants nearby. Once a larva reaches about 3 decimeters and 2 kilos, it pupates into a beetle-like "ripper", with an internal skeleton and plating. These use their claws to hunt animals and rip bark from woody plants, still avoiding their own species; rippers can roam a couple dozen kilometers from their pupa before their adult(ninth) molt, when this avoidance instinct fades and they can join society. In safe places, adult kita maintain "orchards" with each gametophyte surrounded by other species, for the larva and rippers to eat.
The famed kita paranoia can be seen as a sensible assumption when dealing with their own species; they've gotten "trapped" in the Prisoner's Dilemma, as it were. This steady undercurrent of infighting keeps them from organizing on a large scale, but with their desire for organization it results in a pseudo-feudal system of shifting alliances, whose dynamic stability is bewildering to most species. Their ranks are customarily translated as old feudal titles, with Marquis being the most power any kita can hold for long. Higher titles generally indicate a charismatic conqueror… and trouble for other species.
#char Bo Shanauk Soldier 68 0 SM: ±0 25 +5 Arm ST: Two Arms 2 Acute Hearing: +1 18 DR: 6(Can't Wear Armor(-40%)) 10 Extra Legs: 6 Total -10 Selfless(SC: 6(×2)) 8 Striker: Impaling 15 Unfazeable 0 Feature: Early Maturation: 5 0 Feature: Sterile
#char Bo Shanauk Worker 28 0 SM: -1 20 +1 DX 20 +1 IQ -30 -3 ST 4 Acute Hearing: +2 9 DR: 3(Can't Wear Armor(-40%)) 20 Extra Arm ×2 5 Extra Legs: 4 Total -10 Selfless(SC: 6(×2)) -10 Short Lifespan: 1 0 Feature: Early Maturation: 5 0 Feature: Sterile
#char Bo Shanauk Founder 28 0 SM: -2 40 +2 DX -50 -5 ST 4 Acute Hearing: +2 6 DR: 2(Can't Wear Armor(-40%)) 20 Extra Arm ×2 5 Extra Legs: 4 Total 2 Longevity -10 Megalomania 10 Telecommunication: Radio 1 Perk: Reproductive Control(No Founders) 0 Feature: Parthenogenetic Each additional founder in a cluster grants +2 IT.
#char Bo Shanauk Queen -118 0 SM: +1 -100 -5 DX 20 +1 IQ 45 +5 ST(Size(-10%)) 4 Acute Hearing: +2 2 Longevity -30 No Legs: Portable -50 No Manipulators -10 Selfless(SC: 6(×2)) 1 Perk: Reproductive Control 0 Feature: Hermaphroditic
Bo shanauk are metallic insects, modified from regular shanauk from the karsikan homeworld. Engineering them as a bioweapon went all too well. Most resemble chrome crabs with feathery antennae, in various sizes. Workers and founders have four legs and four arms, while soldiers have six legs and two(enlarged) arms. Soldiers also have dramatic tusks, and lack the antennae. Queens are large and blobby, generally pale, lacking the metallic armor, and having only vestigial nubs for limbs, but they do have the feathery antennae.
The life of a bo shanauk colony starts with another colony's cluster planning it. They detatch one founder from the cluster, often the youngest, who sneaks in and selects a site. She lays worker eggs and acts as a solo pouncer/gatherer until a worker hatches, and then they hunt together and she lays a queen egg. While the queen develops, the founder may lay soldier and more worker eggs, but it's more efficient to wait for the queen. Once the queen reaches maturity, she takes over the reproductive needs of the colony, and often one of her first eggs is another founder. Once the colony has two founders, they join into a groupmind cluster, which becomes the brains of the entire operation. The colony will also try to trade sperm sacs with other colonies, to avoid the stagnation of self-fertilization.
Most bo shanauk are calmly loyal to their colony; to the eternal frustration of the colony's founder cluster, this doesn't mean loyalty to the founders. A colony is a relentless economic machine, whose main vulnerability is the pride of the founder cluster… surrounded as it is by relatively-stupid people, it can be swayed by relieving this frustration, although a certain amount of fawning to its ego may also be required.