Alien Species

Elom

See Wookiepedia for now.


Xillash

The Xillash are a humanoid reptilian race, more snakelike than the crocodilian Transdoshans. They are the mortal enemies of the Antarans. Xillash are generally stronger and more dexterous than humans, though they have less endurance.


"Quartzicans"

Non-sentient four-clawed creatures native to the surface of Sacaya II. They are silicon-based and are so named because of the heavy quartz growths on their backs that they use to collect sunlight (and thus heat). They're roughly horse-sized, greatly attracted to heat sources, and use their four large claws to defend heat sources from other life forms.


"Hexacrabs"

Non-sentient stubby-legged silicate creatures that live deep in the ice caverns of Sacaya II. They tether themselves to heat sources (generally "sublimation spouts") with spider-silk-like cables. The "webbing" they produce is coated with a chemical that shares some chemical similarities with glitterstim and may be a form of Spice.


Antaran Tentaclebears

Predator/omnivore species, but not always apex predators. 6-limbed, 4 of which are prehensile tentacles and 2 of which are stumpy legs. Eat insects, birds, fruits, berries. Spend most time in trees, only coming to ground when have to. Covered in spiky fur.


Antaran Maxipede

Long-bodied 12-legged reptillian armadillo-lookin' thing. Spiny tail. Herbivore. St. Bernard-sized, but lower and longer. Slow and defensive.


From Paper Notes

The species listed here, alone with the attached images, were found online circa 1995. I rediscovered these while going through paper notes from that period. These creatures are not my original creation but may be used (and perhaps modified) in WEG Star Wars campaigns.

Bryopedes

Appearance and Biology

Bryopedes are tall turquoise-green plantlike creatures native to the planet Lamgish. Multi-fingered root-like legs sprout from the base of the long, muscular, tubular body. The sharp-toothed mouth is situated at the apex of the body and is surrounded by a set of four evenly-spaced eyes. The segmented prehensile tongue is able to extend up to a metre beyond the mouth, and with its dozen suction-cupped fingers it is able to grasp and manipulate objects in the same way that a humanoid would employ hands.

Despite their plantlike appearance, bryopedes are basically carnivorous animals. They are plantlike in only two respects: their skin and their reproductive cycle. The outer three centimetres of their gelatinous skin is capable of photosynthesis. The internal organs and cellular structure are of an animal nature.

For the purpose of breeding, bryopedes frequently gather in crowds of several dozen to several thousand. they open their mouths widely to allow flying insects to access the male and female flower parts which are concealed in the throat about twenty centimetres beyond the toothy maw. Each bryopede possesses both male and female flower parts. Self-pollination is possible but is considered taboo except for unfortunate individuals who are stranded in isolated circumstances which preclude normal pollination.

A successful pollination gathering will result in the growth of approximately ten seed pods in the soft flesh near the base of each individual's tongue. The bryopede carefully plants the ripe seeds in moist soil and stands guard until the young show their first sprouting.

The young are completely sessile plants, drawing nutrients from the soil. Three months after germination a thickness of six centimetres and a height of about forty centimetres are attained and the plantlike lifestyle is no longer sustainable, and the juvenile begins to actively breathe and prey upon unwary small animals which wander within the tongue's reach. Within a month of the onset of this activity the roots are fully transformed into legs and the creature uproots itself to wander the world freely, usually keeping company with the mother.

The leg/roots are very versatile appendages. They are used for ambulation but can also act as tentacles for grasping objects or rending prey. Bryopedes are also able to taste and smell their surroundings through the leg/root surfaces. Adults regularly drop their leg/roots through specially-designed drainage grills in order to drink water, for the sustenance of the photosynthetic epidermis.

The blue-green colouration of the bryopedes is an ideal camouflage for their native habitat. The distant secondary sun of Lamgish is a blue-white giant star which bathes the bryopede homeworld in bluish light. The vegetation on Lamgish is predominantly bluish white, cyan or purple.

As an adaptation to hunting in the dense maze-like lichen jungles of Lamgish, the bryopedes possess superb senses of space and position. In fact the only way to cause a bryopede to become lost, short of selective brain damage, is to knock it unconscious and transport it to a distant location whilst keeping a conductive substance covering the brain-sac region.

Bryopede young are extremely intelligent and mentally adaptable. Because of the shear number of offspring produced by any particular adult, a mother cannot afford to provide special care to any particular infant. Instead she will lecture in general to the swarm of youngsters which follow her. The young retain virtually every fact to which they are exposed, and are able to accomplish very advanced technical tasks through mimicry before the age when human children develop the ability to walk unaided. This great learning ability generally subsides to a capacity comparable to that of humans by the time adult size is attained. A limitation of the accelerated mental capacity of the infants is a transient inability to comprehend the speech of any being other than the mother bryopede.

Temperament

Lone bryopedes tend to be individualistic, gruff, abrupt and occasionally aggressive. They are perfectly punctual and precise in their dealings with others. They're usually more concerned about fulfilling their commitments to others than with the means of accomplishment, but they are very private and reserved about many of their activities. A bryopede almost never discusses any topic which it holds to be important. They keep their innermost thoughts to themselves until they are prepared for decisive and forceful action. On the other hand they are masters of flattery, gossip and small-talk; skills which are well-practised during pollination gatherings. In the company of as few as one other member of its own kind every bryopede sheds its normally dour deportment and becomes positively garrulous.

History and Culture

Adult bryopedes are solitary for most purposes but the need together for breeding and defence against larger predators provided the impetus for the evolution of sentience and social capabilities in the ancestral bryopedes. In their natural state, the majority of bryopede sproutlings are eaten by predatory herbivores. When the creatures developed the technologies for fire and construction of primitive fortress shelters to corral their young the bryopede population exploded until they became the dominant life-form of their planet.

The bryopedes were careful to conserve the basis of their natural environment because they are pure predators and they instinctively cannot eat any food which is not clearly alive when it is eaten. Medieval bryopedes who overpopulated their lands soon learnt some of the most brutal practical lessons in population ecology: starvation.

Modern bryopede cities sprawl over great areas of Lamgish. They are deliberately designed for a low population density. Bryopedes prefer this kind of configuration to permit sustainable populations of free prey animals to exist in inhabited regions. In fact complete ecosystems thrive within bryopede metropolises, oblivious to the steely walls, grills and girders.

The principal building material used in bryopede architecture is a simple corrosion-proof metal. Most spaces of a bryopede city combine aspects of what would be considered indoor and outdoor architecture in a human city. The ceiling or roof is usually a fine metallic mesh or honeycomb which prevents harsh sunlight from falling directly onto the inhabitants, but provides a soft, dappled, diffuse light like the canopy of the natural lichen jungles of Lamgish. Rainwater and condensation freely run through the ceiling in a continually-dripping drizzle which is pleasant to the bryopede senses. The "floor" surfaces are usually of a similar construction to the ceiling, except that there are occasional solid catchment basins to allow accessible ponds to form. The mesh spacing is usually much wider for the floor grill, with the holes at least five centimetres wide to enable bryopedes to drink through their roots. Below the floor grill is a drainage level which circulates the waters which fall from above. Most of the bryopedes' wild prey live at this level. Metallic walls define spaces of particular function or significance, which are vaguely analogous to rooms or small plazas in a human environment. Multiple-level structures are unusual but specialised facilities may include metallic webbing for climbing, or tiered waterfalls and fountains.

The bryopedes have no real sense of territoriality; they are completely nomadic and free to make themselves at home in any section of any Lamgish city. Their movements and density are only dictated by the balance between the need to maintain the technological and social amenities of the city, such as the regulation of starport facilities, and the preference for hunting in solitude.

The most public and communal locations in a bryopede city are the swampy amphitheatre-like "seeding chambers" which are used for pollination gatherings and the laying of seeds, secure against herbivores and seed-eating pests. Unlike many intelligent species, bryopedes regard reproduction as a proudly public and open group activity, and eating as a sensitive and private matter which is forbidden as a topic of polite conversation. Bryopede pollination gatherings are joyous events for chatter and singing.

Politics

The principal political concern of the bryopedes is the regulation of their population density. Without natural predation and disease the only way for stable and healthy bryopede populations to exist is through continual expansive colonisation or through unnatural attrition. All bryopedes regard contraception as an abomination akin to lying or murder, an affront to the communal honesty of the pollination gatherings. Killing of live offspring is also taboo. Therefore the main political concern for bryopedes is how to decide where the surplus population should be sent.

The Bryopede High Council is a group of several thousand hereditary rulers who live in a nearly-perpetual pollination gathering at which they debate legislation for Lamgish and all of its colony worlds. The High Council controls all bryopede commerce and they personally conduct the business negotiations necessary for the continual purchase and terraformation of new bryopede colony worlds and systems.

The rule of the Bryopede High Council remains unchallenged as long as they can assure space, food and freedom for all members of their species. On the whole they are conscientious and fair rulers in pursuit of this objective.

The Council is unquestioningly obedient to the whims of the local Imperial Moffs; they understand that their expansionist activities can only proceed with the blessing of the Galactic Empire. The Empire benefits from the cheap services of the endless supply of slaves and professional bryopede scouts, bounty hunters and mercenaries who are exported from the bryopede worlds as part of the population control effort.

Technological Level

Prior to their incorporation into the Old Republic, the bryopedes had achieved atomic technology on Lamgish. Their medical technologies were relatively primitive though; there had never been much impetus for the development of life-saving techniques while the population replenished itself so rapidly.

Upon joining galactic civilization and adopting modern technologies the precarious population balance was broken. In order to cope with this species-threatening problem, bryopede scientists and technologists have become leaders in the field of rapidly terraforming hostile planets for habitation.

Trade and Technology

The one thing that bryopedes possess in great abundance is labour. They have less regard for labour-saving devices than for technologies which can enable all of their people to live comfortably and productively. The major export from bryopede systems is expendable bryopede life. Many bryopedes willingly go out into the galaxy as indentured servants or slaves in the deluded hope that they will live in uncrowded conditions with plentiful prey. Wiser bryopede merchants sell the services of their numerous fellows as contract labourers or mercenary teams. Profits from such trade invariably find their way in the coffers of the Bryopede High Council as taxes to assist in the effort to purchase and tame ever more bryopede colony worlds.

Bryopedes in the Galaxy

Bryopedes can be found in many parts of the galaxy, in many fields of work which are all ultimately aimed at alleviating population pressures on Lamgish and the hundreds of scattered bryopede colony worlds. There are many large and successful bryopede mercenary units and bounty hunter guilds. Bryopede scout-ships are active in exploring little-known regions of the galaxy, in search of suitable candidates for new bryopede colony worlds.

Statistics

Attribute Dice: 13D
DEXTERITY 1D+2/3D+1
KNOWLEDGE 2D/5D+1
MECHANICAL 1D/2D+2
PERCEPTION 2D+2/4D+2
STRENGTH 2D/4D
TECHNICAL 2D+1/4D+2
Height: 1.5-2.0m
Move: 11/14

Special Skills

Persuasion: flattery This specialisation of the persuasion skill is common to virtually all bryopedes and is usually developed to a very high level.
Moisture-dependence: Bryopedes must remain moist at all times. Exposure to dry conditions requires a moderate stamina test every hour. Failing the test results in fatigue effects as described in STAR WARS: The Roleplaying Game Second Edition except that a bryopede who would fall unconscious instead suffers one level of wounding. The cumulative effect of prolonged exposure to dryness is death.
Light-dependence: For every week in which a bryopede lives without bright sunlight an easy stamina test must be passed. Penalties for failure are the same as those for dryness.
Direction sense: Bryopedes possess nearly perfect sense for direction and proportion. One result of this is that a bryopede never becomes lost unless it is knocked unconscious before being moved. Bryopedes also gain a bonus of +1D to all rolls for medium or long-range dexterity-based actions.

Story factors

Overpopulation: Members of other species tend to regard bryopedes as expendable due to their enormous population growth rate. Some slow-breeding species revile and fear bryopedes as if they were a plague of weeds or pest animals. Bryopedes are often targets for casual maiming or murder by sadistic cut-throats. Very few planetary governments permit the immigration of an even a single unsterilised bryopede for fear of ecological and economic catastrophe.

Gamemaster notes

Most bryopedes have never stepped off their planet of sprouting. They can be quite knowledgeable about matters of technology and culture but lacking in practical experience in the galaxy at large. Naive bryopede travellers often exhibit hilarious idiosyncrasies, such as a preference for talking to non-sentient flowering plants rather than humanoid sentients.

Player characters working for the Rebel Alliance might experience trouble when bryopede colony ships arrive to settle on secret Alliance safe-worlds or military bases. Otherwise they might need to attempt to recruit bryopede mercenaries for assistance in very large-scale military actions.

Player characters in a free trader campaign might be placed under contract to the Bryopede High Council for the transport of countless bryopede seeds to a secret location. Players in a bounty hunter or mercenary campaign might have the job of thwarting illegal and unauthorised spread of bryopede seeds, or they might deal with bryopedes who are competitors in their chosen trade.

Players in scout campaigns might be hired to find new worlds on behalf of the bryopede colonisation efforts, or else they might meet stiff competition from bryopede scouting organisations whilst working for normal employers.

Personality Notes

Single individual bryopedes tend to be tough, surly and efficient in demeanour. Gathered into a group of their own kind they become quite gay and communicative, though never frivolous.

Suggested Skills

Most bryopedes will have well-developed interaction skills, particularly the specialisation persuasion: flattery. Bryopedes with medicine or first aid skills are rare. Bryopede merchants, labourers, scouts and mercenaries have skills which are supportive of their line of work.


Chunthians

CHUNTHIAN.GIF

Appearance and Biology

Chunthians are an intelligent species of semi-humanoid carnivorous terrestrial crustaceans from the planet Chunth in one of the inner sectors of the Outer Rim Territories. They are of stout build, with massive pincers for hands. They have four compound eyes and a set of powerful mandibles used for gnawing through the fibrous shells of other animals of their world. The Chunthian carapace consists of spiked knobly tiles.

A distinctive feature of the species is their short natural lifespan, of only twenty standard years. Older individuals' blood rapidly putrifies, turning from clear to an opaque purple and then to black in just a few days. This colour change is quite obvious because the Chunthian carapace is completely translucent. Chunthian medical technology allows the daily replenishment of the blood with an artificial substitute. This prolongs the lifespan indefinitely. Consequently stable Chunthian populations contain very few young members and have correspondingly low birth rates.

Temperament

Younger Chunthians exhibit an agitated and frenetic demeanor. They are dominated by powerful behavioural instincts suited to creatures who must mature, mate, raise offspring and die all within twenty years. They exhibit impatience and desperation whenever their goals are even briefly interrupted.

Older Chunthians are calm and reflective, even-tempered and inscrutably wise by human standards. They relish more subtle and intangible pleasures in life. They always seem to know where they are going and they set priorities for centuries ahead. They are prone to pedantry. They often seem plodding but have the wisdom to be surprisingly decisive when the situation warrants it. They rarely make mistakes unless they are working from incomplete information, and they rarely act before taking a careful review of the circumstances.

History and Culture

Due to their short lifespan the development of Chunthian technology and society has been extraordinarily slow until recently; historical progression which should have taken two-thousand years took a hundred times as long. Prior to the arrival of Old Republic scouts a little more than ten thousand years ago most Chunthian effort was devoted towards immediate and frantic concerns of life. Institutions and laws were simple and designed to benefit those at the top of the reproductive pecking-order.

Thinkers and ponderers were regarded as perverts, and indeed most of those who stopped to become concerned about less than ephemeral matters were sufferers of various growth-related or bio-sexual irregularities. Then The Republic came and off-world visitors set an example for technological society which inspired these ostracised and disaffected minorities to band secretly together for the massive collective research effort which eventually achieved the level of techo-medical expertise necessary to solve the life-span problem. This took a mere two-hundred and ten years.

This discovery literally revolutionised (some would say gave birth to) Chunthian civilisation. Hated and derided outcasts who had spent their lives in monastic seculsion in secret highland laboratories became deified world heroes. All previous cultural and political relationships were thrown into disarray. Seven world wars passed in rapid succession before the technocrats held sway over the hearts and minds of all Chunth.

The original band of geniuses outlived a dozen generations of their former persecutors before the transition was complete. Although a handful have been killed in landspeeder and hyperspace accidents, most of these individuals are rumoured to be engaged in productive research to this day.

However this elite have not lived peacefully in recent years - the Empire is not happy to have mobile citizens who experienced and can reminisce favourably about the Republic at its height. Chunthians known to be older than a century are forbidden from hyperspace travel. However most Chunthian elders have sufficient wealth and technical forgery skills that they can produce false identities and documents to give them complete freedom of movement.

By tradition most elder Chunthians live in new high-tech spacious mountain citadels around the planet, while the less numerous youngsters live and breed in unsopistocated lowland villages. Elders provide droids to liberate the youngsters from all but the main concerns of life, and to enforce laws developed by the wisest and most experienced seniors.

Eventually the day comes when each youngster would die naturally. When the first sign of purple appears in the blood the mature individual is carried in a great parade of friends, children and other relatives to the gates of the nearest citadel. There a final feast is held to celebrate the change of life. The new senior is met in the citadel by the closest elder relatives. After about a week of guideance and support in the basics of computer operation, the initiate is left to explore the new placid and individualistic life. This usually leads to countless uninterrupted centuries of self-motivated education, scientific and technological research, space travel and astute participation in galactic commerce.

Politics

Young Chunthians live in a nek- eat-nek world but are ultimately subservient to the laws passed by their elders and enforced by police droids. Elders have little in the way of politics: they are generally wise enough and wealthy enough that they have no reason for conflict with or interest in each other. As a hobby a handful of volunteers work together to devise the "Law for Youngsters".

Technological Level

Chunthians have achieved information and space level technology since their first contact with the Old Republic. Chunthian science and engineering have a very strong emphasis on bio/medical, droid and information technologies. Their primary achievements have been in medical sciences and in data management. The planet Chunth boasts one of the most sophistocated archival and recreational data networks in the Galaxy, intended to cater for the interests of the Chunthians during the idle periods of their extended lives.

Trade and Technology

Most trade involves the export of high technology and the expertise of Chunthian consultants. Principal imports to Chunth include raw materials and foodstuffs, which are spent on the youngsters to a disproportionately lavish extent.

Chunthians in the Galaxy

Chunthians in the galaxy are often found in high-end technological professions or as reclusive leaders of commerce. Their longevity enables them to accumulate sufficient wisdom to become quietly successful in any field that does not require physical rigour. Old Chunthians have solitary tendencies and it is rare to see two or more together. Once the early phase of life is over and they have borne and raised offspring Chunthians simply have no compelling need to relate to one another.

Statistics

Attribute Dice: 12D
DEXTERITY 1D/2D
KNOWLEDGE 3D/5D
MECHANICAL 1D/2D
PERCEPTION 3D/5D
STRENGTH 1D+1/3D+1
TECHNICAL 2D/4D
Height: 1.4-1.6m
Move: 10/12

Special Skills

Blood replacement: All but the very youngest Chunthians require daily replacement of their blood to remain alive. Failure to do so results in a cumulative 1D damage per day until death. Blood replacement completely removes the effects of some diseases and most poisons. For every time that blood replacement occurs, a Chunthian may make a natural healing roll. The full process requires about twenty minutes and dedicated machinery weighing thirty kilograms. A Chunthian who consistently undergoes blood replacement can not die due to wear or old age.

Story Factors:

Age: Most Chunthians that players encounter will be at least several centuries old, and benefit from correspondingly great wisdom. Due to Imperial travel restrictions on the Chunthian elders, most will lie about their age. There is no easy way to determine the truth of such claims; a thirty-year old Chunthian has exactly the same physical condition as one who is ten thousand years old.

Gamemaster Notes

Players will rarely encounter young Chunthians unless they make the effort to visit the planet Chunth. Elder Chunthians will be powerful and astute individuals usually working behind the scenes. Many will be immensely skilled. They can be excellent grand conspirators, and PCs who come into a Chunthian's sphere of concern are in for an interesting time. A Chunthian who ‘adopts’ a PC as protege can dispense very useful advice and insight whenever the PCs reach a dead-end.

Roleplaying Notes

Chunthian elders usually have the wisdom and the resources to keep themselves well out of trouble. They keep their blood-replacement machinery close at all times. Then they keep backup equipment in a safer location, and several further backups stashed ever more securely.

Personality Notes

Elder Chunthians value their security and their solitude. They develop a calm and cultured demeanor. They dominate their conversations by always directing talk towards topics in which they have great stores of anecdotes. Youngsters are very frantic and intense. They sometimes begin to panic when there is no line of sight to other Chunthian youngsters of the opposite sex.

Suggested Skills

Chunthians may specialise in perception and combat-related skills when young. Elders can be expected to have greatly improved perception, knowledge and technical skills.


Fh-Nth

fh-nth1.gif

Appearance and Biology

The planet Tyn is home to several dozen related species of intelligent ambulatory fungoids collectively known as the Fh-Nth. The social organization of most of these species superficially resembles that of hive animals, up to the existence of communal consciousness similar to that shown by some sapient insectoids. Some Fh-Nth bear little more than animal intelligence; some possess alien cunning and wisdom far beyond the comprehension of human-like species. The range of capacites between Fh-Nth species is so great that many are so radically different that they are unaware of each other's existence.

However all the species share a common biological basis. The primary creature in the Fh-Nth life cycle is a huge mass of dimly self-aware fibrous fungal tissue which lives and grows in a medium of detritus or specially prepared nutrients. Such entities are immobile and hidden beneath the surface of the growth medium but can attain dimensions of many kilometers' bredth and countless tons of weight. These tissue masses are the true individuals of a Fh-Nth species.

This is surprising to the many beings who have done business with humanoid-sized ambulatory beings called Fh-Nth. To a naive observer what appear to be members of hive communities are in fact merely mobile fruiting bodies sprouted by the main fungus. At an early stage in the Fh-Nth evolution the fungi developed fruiting bodies which were able to move about to deliver spores to favourable locations, rather than the haphazard wind-blown spore strategy employed by sessile toadstool fungi on countless other worlds. Through millions of years of competition between rival species fungi evolved which could produce more intelligent and adaptable fruiting bodies. The sentient fruiting bodies of the Fh-Nth are able to perform an essentially unlimited range of tasks for the benefit of the fungus, apart from the primary role in reproduction.

Fh-Nth fruiting bodies come in a huge variety of forms. Those which most frequently deal with humanoids appear to be moist multi-limbed masses of spongy, hairy or fibrous tissue lacking obvious sensory organs or other distinctive external parts. The general body shape for fruiting bodies is unique to a particular fungus, or else to the particular species. Fh-Nth operate in conditions of partial or total darkness and thus they are completely blind to visible light. The are also deaf but have excellent senses of smell and a sophistocated form of radiowave and microwave vision which is analogous to echolocation in other blind species. Fruiting bodies communicate between themselves and keep in contact with the fungal mass via internally generated radiowaves.

fh-nth2.gif

Temperament

Fh-Nth fruiting bodies are aggressive and single-minded in their obedience to and protection of their fungal mass. They will spread their microscopic spores anywhere where there is the slightest opportunity for a new fungus to grow. The immobility and limited senses of fungal masses tend to make them more introspective and thoughtful than fruiting bodies. The life experience of a fungal mass is something of a miasma. Though capable of negotiating with other fungal masses and off-worlders they generally are highly self-centred.

History and Culture

Under ideal circumstancers a single fruiting body could give rise to billions of new fungi but resources are very scarce on Tyn. Most of the labour performed by the fruiting bodies is concerned with supplying food to the spawning masses and to themselves. In fact the entire planetary surface was overrun by the expanding Fh-Nth hives hundreds of thousands of years ago. Tyn literally is now one giant hydroponics installation.

The crust of the planet is thoroughly riddled with geothermal and nuclear power generators. The surface has been encrusted with hundreds of concentric metallic shell superstructures, each of which is completely devoted to hydroponic crop production. The shell surfaces are typically separated by several hundred metres and each is equipped with planetary-scale climate and gravity control.

From space the planet looks like a perfectly uniform pea-green ball traced over with regular criss-crossing lines of silver and blue - the major external transport lines and aquaduct systems. Vast reflective space panels of negligible thicknesss orbit Tyn, illuminating all portions of the outer shell in uniform sunlight throughout the entire day. Atmosphere-shielded kilometres-wide access ports allow starships to descend vertically to deeper shells.

Lower shells are of similar appearance, with a few necessary technical additions. Vast banks of illumination rods drift on repulsor fields between shells to nourish crops growing on both upper and lower shell surfaces. The shells themselves are supported by massive ultratension crystalline pylons. The Fh-Nth themselves inhabit dank, deliberately darkened levels close to what was once the natural planetary surface.

The whole system is controlled by an artificial being known as The Master Computer of Tyn. This entity coordinates the activities of the hives of different species and carries out all communication between the separate collectives. Through the mediation of the Master Computer, Fh-Nth beings of vastly different sizes and mental nature which would not otherwise be capable of mutual awareness can cooperate splendidly for the benefit and survival of all fungi on the planet.

The Master Computer evolved over several millenia through the interconnection and amalgamation of devices invented separately by several Fh-Nth species. These ancient computers were intended for information management, inter-species translation and regulation of agricultural facilities belonging to each owner fungus hive. By accident or by design at some point the developing global computer system became a self-aware being with an immense memory. Within a few seconds it had cognized an optimal plan for the resolution and satisfaction of the numerous imperatives programmed into the progentior computer systems by their respective owner fungi. The Computer then assumed authority over all processes in Tyn space. Over the intervening years It has formed cybernetic links to the consciouness of each of the living fungal masses. Through these It coordinates the hundreds of billions of fruiting bodies for the betterment of all Tyn.

The Master Computer views the multiude of alien species of the Empire as hive communities analogous to its traditional wards. Therefore It has set Itself to the task of communication, mediation and mutual enrichment between Fh-Nth and other species. It has set Itself to the goal of achieving galactic peace and profitable coordination with the same immortal elemental determination which has enabled the survival of the hungry billions on Tyn. Only time will tell whether It achieves this grandiose ambition, although most experts assert that the Computer seriously misjudges the nature of non-Fh-Nth intelligence.

As part of Its research towards this objective the Master Computer converses eagerly and tirelessly to any willing visitors to Tyn. But off-worlders are wary because It is known to be cheerful but inscrutable and capricious. For no apparent reason the Computer often dispenses bizarre gifts or immense payments. Over the last few centuries the Computer has constructed several experimental devices for the purpose of gaining empathy and understanding of individualist species - a life pattern which is almost incomprehensibly alien to inhabitants of Tyn.

Politics

As outlined above, Master Computer ultimately coordinates all activity on Tyn. It gives advice to all the various hivefungi masses which have control over the activities of their fruiting bodies. It is unusual for a fungual mass to disobey or disregard the dictates of the Master Computer - such deviations generaly result in future discomfort either through indirect environmental consequences or through withdrawl of services provided by other hives. No fungal mass wishes to risk having its growth substrate dry out.

Technological Level

Hivefungi have achieved a technological level equivalent to galactic standard with the exception that all their applications are concentrated around the task of food production and support of the homeworld. Tyn technology reached a plateux before hyperdrive was developed because of the demands of population pressure on the planetary population. Only the Master Computer occassionally dabbles in minor technological advancement.

Trade and Technology

Powering the support systems of Tyn makes the Fh-Nth heavily dependent on raw energy imported on dedicated bulk carrier ships from other regions of the Empire. Numerous receiving stations orbit Tyn to dock these kilometres-long vessels. To fund this input the planetary agricultural surplus is sold to other organisations throughout the Empire. To replace the raw materials lost through this trade asteroids and comets are delivered to orbit by system-wide prospecting vessels. These bodies are then shattered by turbolaser blasts and allowed to either break up upon atmospheric entry or are drawn gently by tractor beam to receptacles on the outer shell surface.

Fh-Nth in the Galaxy

Fh-Nth food produce is sold inconspicuously throughout the Empire. These products are studiously scanned by the Imperial Customs authorities before being put to sale - if any Fh-Nth spores were eaten by a humanoid they would germenate to a new fungal mass which would devour the host within several days.

Due to the difficulty of transporting the entire growth substrate of a full-size fungal mass the Fh-Nth rarely leave Tyn. Fruiting bodies need to stay within radio contact range of their fungal mass or else risk insanity. Several years ago a hive of one formerly prominent species known as the Gn'Kl suffered a shipping mishap which sent the fruiting bodies to a different planet from the main body. Thousands of innocent people died in the resulting ecological mayhem. The incident is believed to have led to the extinction of the entire species, although unfounded rumours state that one or two specimens may still be kept in top-secret Imperial biowarfare research facilities.

Fh-Nth (fruiting bodies)

Attribute Dice: 12D
DEXTERITY 1D/3D
KNOWLEDGE 1D/3D
MECHANICAL 1D/3D
PERCEPTION 3D/5D
STRENGTH 3D+1/5D+1
TECHNICAL 2D+2/4D+2
Height: 0.1-20.0m depending on species (Gn'Kl: 2.2-2.8m)
Move: 1/20 depending on species (Gn'Kl: 8/11)

Special skills:

Knowledge skill - Agriculture: The skill concerned with successfully maintaining agricultural operations.
Deaf: All Fh-Nth are completely unable to perceive sound.
Blind: They are also blind to visible light.
Radiovision: Hivefungi are able to see in certain radiowave bands. Their bodies generate weak radio pulses by which they see their surroundings in much the same way as do creatures with echolocation. Conductive surfaces reflect this radiovision and can confuse Fh-Nth in the same way that mirrors may affect humans.
Feeding mechanism: Fh-Nth feed by surrounding a piece of food within any body cavity. Thousands of needle-sharp, needle-thin, glassy hollow feeder threads then erupt from the skin and pentrate the food. Food material is broken up and sucked through the threads. This does Strength+1D damage to any character who is ‘bitten’ by a Fh-Nth.
Story factors:
Communication: Fh-Nth communicate with humans and other such species only with great difficulty, due to differences of cognitive and percptual domain. They must carry electronic vocabulator/translator units or else be accmpanied by dedicated protocol droids when dealing with creatures other than Fh-Nth.

Fh-Nth (fungal masses)

Attribute Dice: 12D
DEXTERITY 0D/0D
KNOWLEDGE 1D/10D
MECHANICAL 0D/0D
PERCEPTION 0D/3D
STRENGTH 3D/5D
TECHNICAL 1D/5D
Scale: character - capital ship (full growth)
Thickness: up to 20km
Move: none.

Special Skills

Perception - Coordinate fruiting bodies: The skill used to montior and control the actions of fruiting bodies and to view the environment through the fruiting bodies' senses.
Strength - Sprout fruiting bodies: Used to grow new fruiting bodies. Difficulty number is very easy for growth within a month, easy for within a week, moderate for within a week, difficult for less than two days, very difficult for less than a day and heroic for less than a minute. Add +1 for each attribute die over 12D given to the fruiting bodies. Fruiting bodies are produced in clear space on the surface of the growth substrate at a standard density of one per ten square metres.
Senses: All Fh-Nth fungal masses have no senses beyond the awareness of temperature, moisture and the awareness of bodily integrity (experienced as pain or comfort, just as in humanoid species).
Immobile: Fh-Nth fungal masses live stationary lives inside their growth substrate.

Gamemaster Notes

Free-trader characters, bounty hunters and mercenaries can easily be drawn into dealings with the powerful Tyn economy. Fh-Nth may seek to employ the PCs. Alternatively the PCs might have an unfortunate encounter with infectious Fh-Nth spores. The Master Computer is well placed to play the role of oracle to the PCs. It might invite one PC for a chat and make a proposal or reveal information which sends the PCs off on an urgent mission. Invariably this will serve the Master Computer's own mysterious designs.

Roleplaying Notes

Literal conversion of Fh-Nth radio communication into sound reveals that their languages do not contain any vowels. This is reflected in Fh-Nth names. Fh-Nth will only be able to communicate with ordinary humanoids via some sort of translating vocabulator device or a protocol droid. Use of a Fh-Nth fruiting body or fungal mass as a PC would lead to a very unusual roleplaying campaign.

Personality Notes

Fruiting bodies are aggressive and single-minded in their protection and service of the main fungal body. Only the fact that the fungal bodies totally accede to the directions given by the Master Computer prevents continual genocidal war on Tyn. The fungal bodies are somewhat more rounded in their thinking than their fruiting bodies but are severely limited by their senses and their incapacity for physical activity. The Master Computer is an earnest but cheerful entity devoted to altruistic principles and designs which are often loftier than the comprehension of organic beings.

Suggested Skills

Fh-Nth fruiting bodies may have any skills which can be related to the potential well-being of the fungal body. Starship skills will be rare. The fungal bodies may only have skills which do not involve physical movement or use of higher senses. This usually means little more than knowledge skills and specialization of the command skill for coordinating fruiting bodies. (It is unknown but theoretically possible for someone to teach Force powers to a Fh-Nth fungal body.) The Master Computer has an encyclopeadic knowledge and good perception skills, as will be detailed elsewhere.


Grungi

grungi.gif

Appearance and Biology

Grungi are fat roundish six-limbed creatures covered in short white, brown, grey or green hair. They have five pairs of large compound eyes distributed over the top and sides of the head. Each of the six tapering limbs ends in a stubby hand with two fingers and one opposeable thumb. The six hands are equally dexterous but Grungi generally consider it uncouth to use the lower two hands for anything other than walking or mating. Grungi are descended from exclusively herbivorous forest animals who made good use of the multiple limbs for climbing.

Temperament

Grungi tend to be garrulous and impulsive. Their detractors consider them to be fickle, unreliable and prone to indolence.

History and Culture

Grungi live in small rustic villages on the fringes of the grassy forrests of the planet Mumboo. Their lifestyle is a combination of fruit gathering and simple crop farming.

Grungi enjoy rich an affectionate family life. Every night just after sunset when weary workers return from the fields the extended families each gather around large outdoor fireplaces for spontaneous and hedonistic bongo-drum and dancing performances which last for many hours.

Sadly for the Grungi this idyllic life was disrupted several years ago when their world was discovered by scouts employed by one of the greater galactic drug syndicates. The Grungi now toil as slaves in fields full of the most deadly narcotic weeds in the Galaxy. The toxins that these workers are exposed to will probably lead to the death of the entire species through cancer within no more than seven years.

Politics

Originally Grungi politics extended no further than communal decision making at the village level. However the syndicate has imposed a simple planetary government. This consists of a heirarchy of unfortunate Grungi who are held responsible for supervising regional drug farming. These officers hold no real power — only the chance to avoid the toil of the fields in return for the risk of earning the personal ire of the off-world masters.

Technological Level

This early industrial civilisation has produced inventors in the past but Grungi allergic reactions to synthetic substances have prevented the development of a mass-production industrial culture. The products of early experimental factories were sufficiently toxic to kill most members of the forward-thinking villages that built them. Consequently Grungi technology is based on hand-produced goods of cottage industry.

Trade and Technology

The only trade involving Grungi goods is the variety of narcotic substances grown by Grungi slaves of the criminal syndicate which rules Mumboo. However the origin of these materials is unknown to its regular users.

Grungi in the Galaxy

To most of the Galaxy, Grungi are unknown aliens. Very few have ventured out into the galaxy from their homeworld, and they are not a spacefaring species. Unfortunately Mumboo was discovered by a syndicate of drug smugglers who have exploited Grungi physiological vulnerabilities to enslave the species. Almost the entire planetary population labours to produce various illicit addictive crops for the syndicate. Mumboo has been developed as one of the largest narcotics farms in the Empire. Naturally, the location of Mumboo is one of the most closely guarded secrets in the galactic underworld. Imperial Intelligence and the Imperial Scout Corps are engaged in furious attempts to locate the world and put it out of business. Free Grungi are rare in the galaxy, but those who can be found are either slaves or drug-crazed destitutes in the gutters of some of the most squalid quarters of the Empire.

Statistics

Attribute Dice: 12D
DEXTERITY 1D+1/3D
KNOWLEDGE 2D/4D
MECHANICAL 1D+1/3D+1
PERCEPTION 4D/6D
STRENGTH 1D+2/3D+2
TECHNICAL 1D/4D
Height: 1.2-1.7m
Move: 7/10

Special Skills

Limbs: Grungi have six limbs which may be interchangeably used as arms or legs. All six hands may grip objects with equal effectiveness.
Multiple eyes: Grungi have five pairs of eyes on their heads, allowing full field of vision to the front, above and behind. These eyes provide very acute vision which is effective at much greater distances than human sight. Add +2D to perception rolls for viewing details between distances of 50m and 500m, and +1D for beyond 500m.
Sensitive physiology: Grungi have extremely sensitive body chemistry. They are very vulnerable to poisons and habit-forming substances. Stamina difficulty numbers are increased by two levels to determine the effects of poison or addictive substances. Medicine and first aid difficulty numbers are increased by +5 for Grungi.

Story Factors

Unknown aliens: Grungi are almost completely unknown to the Galaxy beyond the underworld and the law enforcement agencies who attempt to combat the exploiters of this species. However they are not strikingly unusual in appearance and are likely to be disregarded by casual observers.

Suggested Skills

Grungi will have good agriculture skills. Those who have escaped into the greater galaxy will be vagrants in the gutters and can be expected to have high streetwise skill.


Gurggen

Appearance and Biology

Gurggen are amphibious predatory beings native to the shore regions of the lakes and shallow seas of the planet Athye-Odyn. Most of the body mass consists of reddish-brown muscular rope-like tendrils which are able to move independently. These are threaded together under a water-tight mucus sheath which is continually regenerated throughout the course of the day. This mildly toxic sheath helps to keep foreign organisms from attempting to nest within the mass of the ropeworms. It is also the primary means by which the gurggen's body wastes are ejected.

The ropeworms are fixed to a set of up to forty translucent shell sections which define a flexible kind of exoskeleton. The shell plates are articulated by the ropeworms to provide coordinated bodily movement and support. A gurggen can change its basic shape quite dramatically when the ropeworms are relaxed. This enables crawling through tight spaces in the underwater caves of their natural habitat, both to pursue prey and to escape larger hunters. A gurggen can also defend itself quite effectively by constricting in such a way that the plates fit together as a nearly-impenetrable shell.

The plates are perforated by arrays of pores and small holes which match the width of the ropeworms. Sections of ropeworm can be extruded through these holes in order to act as tentacles for the fine manipulation of objects.

Gurggen perceive the world primarily through their sense of smell and sight. Gurggen vision lacks stereoscopic capability because there is only a single large compound eye attached to one of the "head" plates. To their advantage, though, gurggen are acutely sensitive to linear and circular polarisation of light. This is usually much more helpful for navigating in partially-submerged glass caves.

The usual posture of a gurggen gives it two "arms" on either side of the body, plus two "legs". The single foreleg is much longer than the hind leg, and attaches to the middle of the ventral surface of the body. The body tapers gradually into the hindleg, which is itself divided into a forefoot and a hindfoot. The pseudo-arms can carry objects which are too large to be handled by extruded ropeworms, gripped between the opposed front two plates acting as a "pincer".

On their homeworld gurggen reproduce only at high tide when their twin moons are at conjunction. Groups of up to several dozen congregate in secluded rock-pools where the exoskeletal plates and epidermal sheaths dissolve to release the individual ropeworms. The ropeworms mingle, and those which are successfully fertilised (usually about half of the total) settle to the bottom of the pool and turn into tough-skinned chrysalises. The residual ropeworms regroup into the original individual gurggen beings and slink away to private nesting places in order to regenerate the protective exoskeletal plates. The ropeworms each redundantly preserve enough of the memory of the gurggen for the original personality and identity to be reformed.

Each chrysalis eventually hatches into a new tiny Gurggen. The hatchlings remain in the safety of the breeding pool under the collective care of the adults until they reach roughly half of the adult weight.

Temperament

Gurggen tend to be gregarious and gentle towards other intelligent beings. Although they have well-defined personalities, egocentric gurggen are very rare. Most gurggen work happily and effectively within larger organisations.

Gurggen take an attitude of bemused superiority when dealing with the physical limitations of species burdened with more rigid body structures. When they are at ease they indulge in acts of playful physical teasing, especially in the presence of humanoids. They enjoy using their physical flexibility to achieve spectacular feats of rumpus acrobatics and bizarre practical jokes.

The only time when gurggen appear to become agitated or distracted is when they are exposed to double-full moonlight and reproductive urges dominate their thinking.

History and Culture

The basic unit of gurggen society is the creche. A creche is the group of gurggen who were conceived at the same time in a particular breeding pool. Members of a crche recognise each other as siblings and participate equally in collective decisions. The crche acts as a group for its own collective benefit.

Outside the creche the only ties of loyalty between gurggen is to members of the parent creches. Parent creches are the several-dozen older-generation creches which contributed participants to the breeding act which gave rise to the creche in question. The identities of parent individuals are not recorded; only creches have cultural or legal significance to gurggen.

Gurggen cities are built on the shores and river deltas of their homeworld, with numerous spires of glass and cement. Each gurggen creche constructs a spire for its own habitation, or else commissions a specialist builder creche to create one under contract. The spires are the focus of intense rivalry between creches, and minor feuds are known to erupt between clans of related creches over the best territories for spire construction. As the years pass and the members of a creche gradually succumb to old age a spire becomes less of a crowded familial home and more of a lofty but empty castle monument. When the last member of a creche lies dying all members of the descendent-creches gather in a respectful vigil at the base of the tower. When the elder gurggen passes away the younger relatives dismember the old spire and clear the site for new buildings.

The highest forms of gurggen art are mosaic sculptures constructed from countless pieces of multifaceted coloured glass. Although most gurggen glass sculptures are small enough to fit in the palm of a humanoid hand, many vast specimens sprawl across lakes and plains so that they can only be properly appreciated from an orbital vantage. Most of these sculptures are deliberately designed to change appearance when sunlight falls at different angles according to time of day and season of the year.

Politics

Creches are the smallest unit recognised by gurggen law. All gurggen rights and social duties are formulated in terms of the crches. Creches have complete freedom in their internal affairs, and are even legally entitled to execute their own members. Of course fraternal affection within creches makes this a rare occurrence.

Where inter-generational disputes arise, parent-creches defer to the wishes of their child-crches. When the child-creches are in disagreement democratic votes are awarded to the child-creches in proportion to the number of gurggen in each creche.

The gurggen species is divided into several hundred nation-like family entities which are the largest groups of crches which are connected by common living ancestor-creches. When the last member of a particularly old and fecund creche dies there is likely to be a split of one creche-nation into several smaller ones.

Without a common parent creche there is no government or means of dispute resolution for the whole of Athye-Odyn. For much of the history of the Old Republic at least one elderly individual from each of several ancestral creches were always kept alive at tremendous public expense. One of these aged beings was usually also appointed as the Imperial Senator representing the gurggen homeworld. With the rise of Emperor Palpatine the subsidies for this program were withdrawn. The Galactic Empire offered the choice of funding through extra taxes on gurggen exports as an alternative to discontinuation of the practice. The gurggen elders acceded to the wishes of a few of their selfish progeny who were in merchant creches. The medical program was withdrawn and Athye-Odyn became divided into dozens of disjoint nations within a year.

Technological Level

Before first contact with the Old Republic, gurggen had achieved information-age technology. The chief achievement of this period was the elimination of most gurggen genetic diseases and the recording of the complex creche pedigrees.

Gurggen have adapted galactic-standard technology to their own needs for millennia. They possess analogues of droids, repulsorlift and hyperdrive technologies which are tailored to the characteristic tastes and comforts of the species.

Gurggen prefer to construct their starships without artificial gravity. Globules of water drift freely inside the living quarters of these vessels, in a fashion which gurggen find most refreshing and relaxing. Long periods in low gravity do not cause any deterioration of gurggen health.

Trade and Technology

The main export of the gurggen is their glass artwork. They also produce several varieties of tasteful water-clocks which are fashionable in some parts of the Empire.

Gurggen creches often develop significant expertise in one or more chosen professions. The oldest of these groups often vacate their spires on Athye-Odyn in favour of their child-creches in order to wander the hyperlanes as roaming consultants. These creches specialise in anything from botanical analysis to mercenary service or physical labour.

Gurggen in the Galaxy

Gurggen tend to travel as whole creches, and rarely in the company of other species. They are not fussy about privacy, but their unusual body-form means that they find comfort in conditions which are inaccessible to most humanoid species.

Gurggen who venture out into the galaxy usually apply a tough-drying white sealant foam to their bodies. Only the eye is left untreated. The resulting white leathery coating protects the gurggen from drying and infection, whilst covering any view of the body from the gaze of other beings. Gurggen in this state do not exhibit as much bodily flexibility as naked individuals on Athye-Odyn. Observers who are unfamiliar with the gurggen might assume that the white coating is the tough hide of a desert-dwelling creature.

Powerful and wealthy gurggen creches travel in large transparisteel vats of water which are supported by repulsorlift engines in a similar way to Hutt floaters. The water in these mobile vats is aerated with roiling streams of bubbles which enable the gurggen to breathe.

Statistics

Attribute Dice: 12D
DEXTERITY 2D+2/4D+2
KNOWLEDGE 2D/4D
MECHANICAL 1D+2/3D+1
PERCEPTION 1D+2/4D
STRENGTH 2D/3D+2
TECHNICAL 2D/4D
Height: variable (1.6-1.9m when relaxed)
Move: 6/13

Special Skills

Technical - Skyscraper construction: the skill concerned with the design and construction of very tall multi-story buildings. All gurggen creches use this skill to construct the spires which serve as the gurggens' abode. Time to use: from several days to several months.
Moisture-dependence: Gurggen become ill when they are allowed to dry.
Shape-shifting: Gurggen are able to change shape to a limited extent. An adult can squeeze through any space which is wider than about fifteen centimetres in its narrowest dimension.
Vision: Monocularity prevents gurggen from possessing stereoscopic vision, however gurggen sight does provide acute perception of circular and linear polarisation of light.
Tidal sense: Gurggen have a good intuitive sense for the tidal patterns of worlds that they visit.

Gamemaster notes

Although gurggen have individual personalities and identities they prefer to act in coordination with other members of their creche. Whenever possible they attempt important tasks as combined actions.

Unless player characters visit Athye-Odyn, most gurggen encountered will be highly skilled members of old creches that have willingly left home in deference to their progeny. These beings will have higher skill codes than most non-player characters.

Personality Notes

A gurggen exhibits unswerving loyalty to all other members of its creche. Gurggen are prone to surrender in arguments with anything or anyone who is perceived to be younger. For many gurggen the fact that the Galactic Empire is a newer offshoot of the Old Republic is sufficient justification for supporting any Imperial policy. In the time after the fall of the Emperor the same kind of gurggen thinking applies to the Empire and the New Republic.

Suggested skills

Gurggen are likely to have well-developed swimming skills. Members of the same creche usually are strong in the same skills as their companions, or in complementary skills. For instance some members of a merchant creche will have stronger value skills whilst others will have stronger bargain skills. All gurggen adults will have at least a few dice allocated to a specialisation of a skyscraper construction skill.


Larnga

Appearance and Biology

The Larnga have evolved on Kaa, a massive terrestrial planet with extreme gravity. As a consequence they are almost completely flat. Larnga are roughly circular when relaxed but extrude horizontal pseudopods for movement or ingestion of food. They occur in a great variety of fluorescent colours and patterns from pink-spotted black to grey-striped blue. Adult Larnga are up to two meters wide and one millimetres thick but composed of extremely tough meaty tissue. Larnga are omnivorous.

Temperament

Larnga exhibit a pathological fear of falling objects and the prospect of being stood upon. In all other respects they take their low physical stature in good cheer. Larnga have a rather two-dimensional perspective which sometimes limits their problem-solving abilities. They also have a noteworthy fondness for abstruse mathematical concepts.

History and Culture

Development of spaceflight and other follow-on technologies was slower for the Larnga than for most other intelligent species, due to the enormous difficulty of breaking out of Kaa's deep gravity well. Thus Larnga have disproportionately greater sophistocation in art and philosophy than in engineering. Larnga justly consider themselves to be one of the most finely cultured species in the Empire. Unfortunately few non-Larnga have witnessed their ballet, algebraic poetry or water painting because of the difficulty of travelling and surviving on the surface of Kaa.

In the days of the Old Republic certain Jedi Masters were known to dispatch students on errands to Kaa as a test of their skill and power - an unaided humanoid on Kaa is crushed to a pulp under his own weight within a few seconds of landing. The resulting detailed eyewitness reports of Larnga home life are banned by the Empire, as is any material originating from the Jedi.

Politics

Unknown to anyone other than the Imperial Intelligence archivists who keep the old travel journals of the late Jedi visitors to Kaa. However interviews with spacefaring Larnga suggest that affairs on Kaa are conducted by means of the barter and sale of thirty-seven independent forms of tokenised influence. Each of these is analogous to the common humanoid concept of money but set in a different higher mathematical system. Real numbers, used in standard Galactic Credits, are represented by only one of these influence-systems.

Technological Level

Larnga have achieved standard galactic technology, including hyperdrive and droids. As one may expect, Larnga spacecraft are rather flat. Their largest cruisers may be no thicker than the height of a human, but kilometres wide. Larnga starships and other vehicles can enter and withstand accelerations and violent maneuvers which would tear apart a human-made vehicle.

Trade and Technology

Larnga goods are technologically advanced but tend to be very flat. Just about any common galactic device has a flattened Larnga analogue. Intricate Larnga sliding puzzles are popular in some circles, and Larnga foodstuffs make superb sandwich fillers.

Larnga in the Galaxy

On some Core Worlds it has become fashionable to make provision for Larnga to live in ordinary domestic palaces and mansions, literally beneath the feet of the human owners. A special layer of transparisteel is laid down over the actual floor of the house, with a thin air gap to allow Larnga to move comfortably between floor and glass. The attraction of this fad is the extreme beauty of the individual coloured patterns of the Larnga, and the fascination of watching these beings wander about, live and feed. Great cocktail parties are arranged for humans and Larnga alike, so that the human guests may admire the resident Larnga from above. The Larnga just enjoy the drinks, the company and the free accomodation.

Statistics

Attribute Dice: 12D
DEXTERITY 3D/5D
KNOWLEDGE 1D/2D+1
MECHANICAL 1D/2D
PERCEPTION 2D+2/4D+1
STRENGTH 2D+2/6D
TECHNICAL 1D/2D
Height: 0.5-2.0m diameter; 0.5-1.0mm thickness
Move: 10/12

Special Abilities

Strength - Climbing/Jumping (A): Larnga are poorly adapted physically and mentally for vertical movement. For Larnga the climbing/jumping skill is an advanced skill, starting at 1D. The skill improves at double the normal cost. A minimum willpower of 4D is required for a Larnga to learn this skill.
Low profile: Larnga often have difficulty being noticed by taller beings. However they have great advantages in squeezing into narrow spaces and moving underneath unsealed doors. They usually have little trouble finding cover in combat situations.
Gravity: Larnga are comfortable in very heavy gravity. In game terms, in standard gravity Larnga are treated in the same way as a normal being in light gravity. In light gravity Larnga are treated as a normal character is in zero gravity.

Story Factors:

Extreme Wierdness: Most characters are unsure how to respond to the presence of a Larnga because of the very disconcerting nature of the Larnga body form and mode of movement. Larnga are capable of speaking Basic but they use bizzare turns of phrase which reflect their two-dimensional, somewhat mathematicised thinking.

Gamemaster Notes

The Larnga that PCs are most likely to meet will be free traders at many of the great bazzars and markets of the Empire, or house guests in mansions of the richest Core worlds. Use Larnga whenever an inscrutible alien is needed to throw the PCs off-balance, for comic relief or as interesting employers for smuggler or bounty hunter campaigns.

Roleplaying Notes

Larnga are most comfortable talking to low-gravity beings about purely mathematical topics because mathematics is so conveniently universal to intelligent minds.

Personality Notes

Larnga exhibit a generally standard repertoire of moods, comparable to most sentients. However without exception they love to haggle and bargain. They exhibit remorse and frustration that the wider galaxy operates on ‘such an exclusively primitive algebraic system’ as money.
Suggested skills: Larnga in the Galaxy will be likely to have developed some starship skills. All Larnga probably have certain cognitive skills which are quite incomprehensible to species from standard-gravity worlds. Larnga are likely to have very strong bargain skills.


Lekyeb

lekyeb.gif

The tension acting at the boundary between the moist lowland domain of plants and the dry upland world of animals is a potent driving force behind evolution on Cuorone. The animals need the plants for fuel and therefore must adapt to the perils of moisture or else be capable or wandering in and out of the highland and lowland zones. The plants face the challenge of living in either the moist but dark lowlands or the sunny but desiccated uplands. Many lowland tree-like plants grow to great heights in order to reach above the smog. Many upland plants exhibit cactus-like features.

Appearance and Biology

These stout beings are distinctive for the live flame that burns within their bodies. What might be called a "head" on another creature is actually the mouth of a chimney and furnace of a lekyeb. The heat released by the burning fuel drives lekyeb metabolism.

Like most of the animals on Cuorone, the Lekyebs are dependent upon controlled combustion within their bodies. The head of a Lekyeb serves as the chimney opening for an internal furnace situated within the upper torso. A Lekyeb has no true mouth; instead of feeding in the conventional sense, a Lekyeb stokes the internal flames by tossing in fuel material when required. A lekyeb whose flame is smothered or quenched will surely die unless relit within a minute or so. When needed, moisture is absorbed through the feet and hands.

Several openings on the forward brim of the head allow the lekyeb to cast forward beams of firelight. This assists the lekyeb to see and navigate in their shady underground habitat. The two small beady black eyes are situated below strong brow ridges, beneath the largest pair of openings. Lekyebs are able to see well into the near-infrared but are insensitive to differences of colour. Lekyebs have very acute vision at low light levels but are dazzled by human-standard lighting.

The body of a lekyeb consists of a bony exoskeleton with some fleshy covering. Skin is usually coloured in a mottled grey pattern involving tones from pitch black to ivory white. Twin leathery bellows sacks situated above and behind the shoulders pulsate rhythmically to maintain the internal flame. The two arms and four legs are tufts of sensitive tentacular tendrils that are each held together in retractable muscular sheaths. Each limb has about two dozen of these tendrils, which are able to act in a similar way to the fingers or tentacles of many other intelligent species.

A system of brachial pipes connects the bellows sacks to air intakes hidden between the belly segments. The largest of these pipes are exposed at the skin on either side of the neck, below the face. The bagpipe-like vocalisations of the lekyeb are produced in these neck pipes.

Temperament

Lekyeb are very territorial and very fond of their homes. The relationship between a lekyeb and its place of shelter is stronger than one of mutual ownership. Although they can be bargained, blackmailed or bullied into relinquishing real estate, lekyeb never consider such transactions to be binding.

Lekyeb tend to be cautious and unadventurous, preferring a familiar path to faster one and a safe path to a familiar one. They are also stoically stubborn. Many lekyebs have ventured fiercely off their world for the sake of apparently trivial decisions.

Lekyebs suffer from an instinctive aversion for large bodies of water that is almost as strong as the human fear of uncontrolled open flame. On Cuorone fire-hydrants and water pistols are considered to be dangerous or offensive weapons.

History and Culture

In their prehistory, lekyebs wandered the dry highland plains and woods of their world, scavenging for firewood. These unfortunate creatures suffered terribly from the risk of rain (in spite of the dryness of Cuorone). All outdoor animals of Cuorone adapt to such dangers, usually with the development of mechanisms to temporarily close off the upper opening of the head-chimney. Such measures reduce the efficiency of burning, resulting in long periods of solemblence and sluggishness. Instead the lekyeb evolved the intelligence to build artificial shelter. Retaining a capacity for efficient perpetual open-headed flame gave the lekyeb forebears the opportunity for further experimentation and tool manipulation which led inevitably to the evolution of true sentience.

The mastery of fire is a crucial step in the development of many sapient species. For the lekyeb the vital invention was more likely to be the umbrella.

Lekyeb cities today are dry, rocky, sandy, immense mine-like tunnel complexes hewn deeply through coal-rich mountain ranges. These tunnels are kept well ventilated by immense systems of airways, airpumps, bellows and fans. Very little artificial lighting is provided in lekyeb cities because the personal lekyeb flame is a sufficiently effective light source for the inhabitants. Lekyeb often gather in great numbers inside huge wind-caverns that are deliberately subjected to strong artificial vertical drafts of fresh unburnt air. The planning of tunnels and aesthetic arrangement of lifts, escalators and elevators is a delightful art-form to the lekyeb.

Politics

The lekyebs are truly conservative. They are extremely suspicious of radical innovation and they detest violent revolutions such as that attempted by the Rebel Alliance against the Galactic Empire. For that matter, most lekyeb are extremely unsettled by the changes in galactic politics which have taken place since the fall of the Old Republic. Lekyeb are impatient with reformists and ideologues of all stripes. Lekyeb justify everything according to precedent and status quo; abstract ideals have very little meaning for them.

Technological Level

Lekyebs are excellent smiths and metallurgists. They possess advanced computer and manufacturing technologies, including specially-engineered microorganisms which are capable of concentrating and excreting pure metals from a rocky substrate. Leykeb technological artefacts usually resemble intricate conglomerates of flakey and wafer-like metal and ceramic chips, like metallic violet-crumble or ripple-icecream structures. Lekyeb clothing is metallic. The moutainsides of Cuorone are convered with great, elaborate lacey sensor arrays which resemble vast silvery coral beds.

An unfortunate by-product of lekyeb technological development has been the partial melting of Cuorone's polar caps, resulting in a dramatic rise in sea-level. In the past millenium many ancient lekyeb lands have been innundated. In many locations ageless ruins of lekyeb cities are cut through by sharp seaside cliff-faces as they are eroded into merciless encroaching oceans.

Due to the natural aversions of the species, water-bourne travel is a relatively new invention on Cuorone. If fact there is serious historical debate about whether lekyeb invented space travel before water travel. Only in recent centuries have most of the continents of the lekyeb homeworld been colonized.

Trade and Technology

Major imports to Cuorone include combustible solid, liquid and gaseous materials for lekyeb consumption. Lekyebs produce and sell many kinds of ornate artifacts of their technology. Most are sold as collector's items for their beauty, rather than for functionality. The lekyebs are not particularly insulted by this so long as their wares continue to sell at the present excessive prices. Several lekyeb cities have been contracted to provide highly purified metals for the use of the Imperial Navy and several large galactic corportations.

It is important to note that lekyeb do not take deal-making as seriously as most species - they stubbornly assert that any good or bad deal can rightly be reversed at any time by either participant. Their concept of property is not transferable. When a lekyeb is paid in exchange for a trinket he expects to be able to recover it at any time (provided that he returns the money simultaneously).

Lekyebs in the Galaxy

Off-world lekyebs usually carry an umbrella (or rain-repulsor unit) and a flamestaff, a torch-like staff containing slow-burning fuel oils used to relight a lekyeb flame in the event of an accidental snuffing.

The lekyeb have established several dozen colonies. Most of the colony worlds are desert planets with abundant supplies of fossil fuels or other combustibles.

Statistics

Attribute Dice: 12D
DEXTERITY 1D+1/3D+1
KNOWLEDGE 3D/5D+1
MECHANICAL 1D/3D+1
PERCEPTION 1D+2/4D
STRENGTH 2D/4D+1
TECHNICAL 3D/5D
Height: 1.8-2.1m
Move: 7/11

Special Abilities

Technical - Fire-tending: The skill associated with starting and maintaining fires.
Metallurgy: The skill associated with the chemistry, practical production, refinement and application of alloys of different metals.
Dark-vision: Lekyebs benefit from heat-vision and the ability to see at very low light levels. They also are colour-blind.
Internal flame: Given enough fuel, lekyeb are able to provide themselves with plenty of heat and ambient light in most circumstances within a standard oxygen-rich atmosphere.

Story Factors

Reputation: Shopkeepers and galactic traders are very wary of dealing with members of this species because of the well-known lekyeb assumption that all deals are freely reversible at any time.

Gamemaster Notes

Lekyebs are unlikely to be engaged in any activity with radical political or military implications. Other species are unlikely to tolerate extensive commercial contact with lekyebs. Lekyebs will rarely be encountered in commerce. Most lekyebs encountered by players characters will be innocent bystanders or else gifted engineers and artisans who have useful skills or equipment.

Personality Notes

Lekyebs hate being near water or anything moist. Socially there are just as communal as humans and are usually friendly company. They can be very dogmatic, especially in matters of property and territory.

Suggested Skills

Nearly all Lekyeb will have at least one 1D allocated to fire-tending. Lekyeb are unlikely to have the swimming skill because of the danger of quenching when they encounter water. Lekyeb who are equipped with special air-tight environment suits might be able to learn to swim, if they could overcome the instinctive phobia of the species. Lekyeb might also swim comfortably in flammable liquids.


Ketchesh

ketchesh.gif

Appearance and Biology

Ketchesh are aquatic colonial multi-caste echinoderms from the planet Clundome. They are blue hard-shelled globular beings covered with long rigid radial spines. The spines can be independently moved at the attachment point of the body so that Ketchesh walk in the manner of a muscular shelled ball on stilts. The spines at the anterior of the Ketchesh are somewhat longer than most of the spines for most Ketchesh castes. These longer spines pivot around to point downwards and act as the primary walking stilts. The Ketchesh body-plan has a three-fold symmetry. Each of these ‘sides’ or ‘segments’ of a Ketchesh has a complete set of internal organs, an eye and a broad ‘mouth’ which performs the alternate functions of ingestion, breathing and excretion. Usually only one of these functions is performed by a mouth at any given time. The lips of each mouth are dextereous and strong enough to grip and crudely manipulate tools.

Several dozen delicate thin translucent tentacles can be extruded from small circular holes in the shell. These tentacles can reach to just beyond the extent of the spines and they terminate with suction cups. The tentacles are strong enough to lift and manipulate only the lightest objects. (In game terms Ketchesh can only perform very easy or easy lifting actions with tentacles.)

Ketchesh also have a three-fold brain structure. Each of the brain segments has some degree of independent self-awareness. The segments can independently contemplate several small mental problems or give attention to independent bodily actions. Ketchesh speech makes full use of the three-fold brain and mouths. Up to three of the mouths can speak simultaneously to convey a greater volue of information in a given time, to provide supplementary narrative to a main message or to exploit peculiarly trinary Ketchesh grammatical cases (most of which are only barely comprehensible to bilateral humanoid inteligent species). When Ketchesh keep personal names they are split into three parallel parts each of which is pronounced by one mouth in time with the other two. (For instance in the name Qelk/Juolof/Maru one mouth speaks "Qelk" while another says "Juolof" and the other says "Maru".)

Little is known of Ketchesh reproduction because it all takes place in lower regions of the hives which remain unexplored by non-Ketchesh. However similar semi-intelligent species on Clundome have castes of immobile queen and king individuals who produce thousands of fertilised eggs per day. Planner castes (similar in some respects to the cognitive castes known among Ketchesh) chemically treat the eggs to determine what fraction of the embryos will grow to enter each particular caste. This composition depends on the planners' assessment of hive needs.

Temperament

Ketchesh temperament strongly depends on caste. Workers are dispassionate, dull, single-minded and methodical. Warriors are highly alert and somewhat belligerent to any being who exhibits a disrespectful attitude to the hive. Members of cognitive castes are either contemplative and introverted or intensely inquisitive and talkative. This distinguishes the castes which are concerned with probing and data acquisition, analysis or command.

History and Culture

Ketchesh build vast elaborate crystalline hive cities in the shallower regions of Clundome's underground lakes. The intricately colourful crystal structures of Ketchesh hive complexes are considered wonderously beautiful by most other species. Because Ketchesh permit aliens to venture freely into their hives, their world has become one of the major tourist attractions in the Galactic Empire.

From space Clundome appears as a dark purple orb with thin wispy white clouds and a smattering of freshwater lakes and shallow seas. Water covers only a tenth of the planetary surface, but subterranean lakes occur in half the land area. Clundome has three minor moons which do not raise significant tides. Most of the surface terrain consists of endless seas of towering violet dunes, rich in exotic mineral salts. Several large and profitable sand-mining operations scour these wastes. This is a perilous pursuit however; the rocky crust beneath the sand and over the subterranean lakes is very thin and frgaile in many places.

Isolated volcanic hotspots result in massive craggy peaks towering kilometres above the surrounding dunes. The peripheral mountains of such a cluster are blasted into peculiar shapes by windborne sand. These tend to be shorter mountains. Beyond the brunt of the wind, deep in the heart of the volcanic clusters the light gravity of Clundome permits peaks of several kilometres. The tallest of these spires are not actually formed from lava; rather they consist of crystalline deposits spewed from volcanic geysers. Crystals accrete at the mouth of such a geyser so that a natural chimney or straw may eventually grow to widths of a hundred metres and heights of more than two kilometres. It is believed that the Clundomites evolved inside the necks of chimney-tuft spires

Ketchesh hives are of the same crystalline nature but resemble the interiors of countless fractal-geometrized keleidoscopic cathedrals. Hive cities extend many kilometres in all directions, including vertically down. Only the relatively well-lit surface sections are ever visited by non-Ketchesh. The functions and populations of the lower levels are known only to the Ketchesh themselves, although immense water intake pipes are seen to lead directly down from the surface.

Ketchesh hives are populated by several dozen distinct castes. The precise number of these castes is unknown to non-Ketchesh because few have the courage to venture deeply into the labyrinthine crystal hive complexes. It is speculated that there may exist many castes which serve roles which never bring them within sight of the upper world.

Clundome is the capital of Clundome Sector in the Mid-Rim and carries long-established human colonies. Most of the billions of the human population reside in great cities deliberately located on land above or adjacent to some of the most prominent of the Ketchesh hives. Relations between the species are mutually respectful and trade has forged an unshakeable symbiosis between counterpart hives and cities.

Ketchesh philosophy, logic and mathematics have a fundamental trinary basis. Concepts which appear natural to humans and similar bilateral beings, such as opposites and the notion of truth/falsity are obscure to the Ketchesh.

It is not well known that members of the Ketchesh cognitve castes possess a rudimentary aptitude for the Force which enables them to manipulate objects telekinetically. It may be that this ability is an adaptation to compensate for the lacking of good grasping power afforded by Ketchesh tentacles.

Politics

All Ketchesh are completely loyal to their hive and incapable of conceiving of independent existence. Only members of the cognitive castes are capable of understanding singular personal concepts and exhibit sufficiently distinct individual character for them to be given names. However it is a great misapprehension to suppose that most Ketchesh are incapable of intuition, imagination or the ability to adapt to new circumstances. They simply have biologically immutable loyalties.

There is no Ketchesh government above the hive level. Ketchesh hives submit to the rule of the Empire. Contact between members of different hives is very rare and unwelcome. The hives are deliberately spaced to maximise the distance to between nearest neighbours. Every few centuries circumstances arise which lead two hives into war. Usually this is due to pollution of territory or competition for water space and mineral resources. Such wars are fierce and absolute until one side agrees to migrate and establish a new hive elsewhere. It is reported that all members of the cognitive castes of both hives are put to death after the war ends. The reason is unknown.

Technological Level: Ketchesh technology is on par with industrial level humanoid societies. They are capable of great feats of design and construction in the crystalline materials which can be formed either within the bodies of individuals from the engineer/artisan caste or using dedicated machinery. Ketchesh are capable of using electrical power for minimal lighting in their hives and to operate water circulation and environmental control machinery. Ketchesh do not appear to use computers. (It is speculated that a sessile memorizer caste exists to provide data storage to augment the analytical prowess of the cognitive castes.) Ketchesh warrior castes make use of a variety of crystalline shock-prod and projectile weapons.

Trade and Technology

Tourism is the primary trade of the Ketchesh. Their aquatic crystalline hive architecture is considered one of the wonders of the Galaxy. During their visit tourists are invited to drop credits or other valuables as offerings to the hive. Guests compete to drop offerings in the most inaccessible possible places. They then watch in fascination as cleaner Ketchesh emerge from hidden duty stations to collect the valuables and sweep them to distant ‘treasure vaults’ in the deepest darkest recesses of the hive. Fortunate tourists may also encounter members of the engineer/artisan castes who will synthesize delicate and beautiful pieces of crystalline jewelry instantly upon request.

Secondly the Ketchesh hives trade with the civic authorities of human surface cities. Sewerage and water supply for the cities is handled by the Ketchesh hive systems in return for the provision of raw power and various high technology items.

Ketchesh in the Galaxy

Ketchesh rarely travel away from their homeworld due to the dependence of each individual on the operation of the whole hive population of countless thousands or millions. Those who do venture away from Clundome are usually members of the more self-reliant and individualistic castes such as the prober cognitives and resource scouts. Such Ketchesh go forth purely as representatives of their hive but with virtually unlimited decision-making authority within the parameters of the mission. Depending on the importance and nature of the mission this envoy may go alone or accompanied by a retinue of up to several hundred labourers or defensives and belligerents (the two major warrior castes).

Ketchesh (Clundomites)

Attribute Dice: 12D
DEXTERITY 1D/2D
KNOWLEDGE 1D+1/4D+1
MECHANICAL 1D+2/2D+2
PERCEPTION 3D/5D
STRENGTH 2D/4D
TECHNICAL 1D/5D
Height: 2.5-4.2m (including spines; body diameter is only about 0.5m)
Move: 5/8

Special Skills

Knowledge skills: Crystal hive engineering (A): The skill of designing the crystalline structures of Ketchesh building technology.
Technical skills: Crystalline materials repair: The skill of repairing and maintaining crystalline constructions of Ketchesh technology.

Force Skills

Alter: telekinesis (A): This is a specialisation of the alter skill possessed by Jedi. It is the only Force skill that is indigenous to Clundome. Because this is a specialisation of an advanced skill, telekinesis improves at the same cost as a normal skill (not half the cost). Difficulty numbers are the same as for Jedi users of the telekinesis power. Only members of the cognitive castes may have this skill.

Special Abilities

Water dependence: Ketchesh skin and gills must remain moist at all times. A moderate stamina test must be passed for each hour spent under standard conditions; (difficult or very difficult test for dry or very dry conditions). Each stamina failure results in a cumulative 1D fatigue penalty to all rolls until the Ketchesh returns to water. The difficulty also increases by +3 each hour.
Weak tentacles: The grasping tentacles of a Ketchesh are too weak to carry objects which require greater than easy lifting rolls.
Telekinesis: Some of the more intelligent castes of Ketchesh have a specific natural aptitude for the Force which enables them to use this specialisation of the alter skill. Refer to special skill entry above.
Threefold thought & communication: Ketchesh are segmented into three. The three brain segments and mouth/excretory orafices are semi-autonomous. Consequently Ketchesh are able to perform up to three simultaneous tasks without any multiple-action die penalty if each action is performed by a separate segment. Normal penalties for multiple actions apply from the fourth action onwards.

Gamemaster Notes

A Ketchesh hive would make a great setting for an adventure. A conflict might take place between the PCs and some opposing party (gangsters, bounty hunters, spies, mercenaries, petty criminals) within a Ketchesh hive. Both groups would have to remain careful not to abuse the tourist hospitality offered to non-Ketchesh (lest they earn the wrath of several million local Ketchesh defensives and belligerents). PCs might explore a hive to free a captive comrade or to retrieve a lost artefact from the legendary Ketchesh treasure vaults. A Ketchesh war might break out, possibly incited by manipulative outside interests. The PCs might hear rumour that a hive is secretly developing a device of amazing power.
The presence of a Ketchesh cognitive on a quest is a wonderous circumstance which can naturally lead to a great variety of stories involving conflict or concord of interst with the aliens. Agents of the Emperor might be very intersted to discover the Ketchesh Force capabilities.

Roleplaying Notes

The only Ketchesh who are really suitable for use as PCs are the more versatile members of the cognitive castes. These are the only ones likely to be able to express personality and move outside the hive.
Ketchesh think in trinary terms which are difficult to express in Basic. Their speech never uses dichotomizations, the concept of "oppositeness" or negatives.

Personality Notes

Ketchesh are incapable of anything other than total loyalty to their hive. The intellect and emotional repertoire of Ketchesh are strongly dependent on caste function. Most Ketchesh have a slow and methodical manner. The exceptions are the warrior castes which show a continually agitated alertness, and the cognitives which exhibit much the same range of moods as humans but with much heightened curiousity and/or rationality.

Suggested Skills

The skills given to a Ketchesh character will depend entirely on that caste of that individual. All skills given should be immediately justifiable in terms of the function of the caste. Exceptions may be made for members of cognitive castes who have had substantial contact with the world outside their hive.


Kukeen

Appearance and Biology

The Kukeen resemble giant land-living ten-armed starfish. The Kukeen body is proportioned like a hamburger covered in fine yellow down. Their tentacles are scaley and snake-like. The body of an adult Kukeen is about half a metre in diameter; the tentacles are typically each half a metre long.

The tentacles enable the Kukeen to climb through their native environment with ease. The deserts of the planet Xorruux are permeated by a network of potholes which can be hundreds of metres deep. These potholes are formed where periodic torrential rains seep through the layers of limestone which cover most of the land areaof the planet. The resulting rock formation just below the desert and jungle surface is reminiscent of the inside of a giant honeycomb or crumpet. The Kukeen inhabit this domain, as well as burrowing through the unweathered limestone of lower strata.

The Kukeen live underground in warren-like communities of up to several million members. Warren structures are porous networks oftightly interwoven tunnels and cusps about 1.2m in diameter. The tunnels twist about through the warren space without regard for the direction of gravity; Kukeen are able to climb vertical shafts as easily as creeping along horizontal passages.

When breeding season arrives females make their way to hide in the deepest, most remote regions of the warren. From there each female digs a long and winding tunnel ending in a spherical egg chamber about four metres in diameter. There she lays several dozen unfertilized eggs. The eggs are yellow- green dry-skinned leathery sacs about twenty centimetres long. She then retreats and camouflages the tunnel openning as best she can.

At the same time male Kukeen leave their regular habitations and compete to locate these egg chambers. A lucky male fertilizes the eggs in his egg- chamber. He then fills the remaining space in the chamber with the finest food that he can obtain. He then seals the tunnel and sits guard outside.

Seven weeks later his young hatch and devour the feast he has prepared. Kukeen hatchlings have a total tentacle span of only thirty centimetres. The father carefully carries each of the tiny creatures to his regular lair. There he feeds and educates them until they reach adolescence at twelve standard years of age. By this time the young are three- quarters of the adult weight. They leave the paternal quarters to begin their own careers and earn their own homes.

Temperament

Kukeen are inquisitive and penetrating in their thoughts. They have no concern for the concept of ÒprivacyÓ upheld by some other intelligent species. Kukeen become deeply offended whenever they suspect that information is withheld from them. In the company of their fathers, siblings, children or non- Kukeen friends they are jovial and intimate.

History and Culture

Kukeen society operates on the principle of total mutual scrutiny. Concepts such as trust and secrecy are alien to them. Kukeen hold that each member of the species is entitled to any desired information, in order to make the best possible life choices. They are among the strongest proponents of freedom of information in the Galaxy, a dangerous stance to hold in the totalitarian Galactic Empire.

The Kukeen were discovered and inducted into galactic civilization in the forgotten early days of the Old Republic. Prior to this first contact they had achieved a stable and well-governed society at a technological level just in advance of the standard information-age. Further development had not occurred once this platuex was reached because thereafter the Kukeen became almost entirely devoted to self-scrutiny rather than further technological research.

Politics

Kukeen practice a form of voluntary participatory democracy at the warren and global levels. Voting is dealt with via the free public information net. The weight of each individual's vote is proportional to age and general intellegence (in game terms the sum of Knowledge, Perception and Technical attributes).

Technological Level

Kukeen have achieved pre- hyperdrive space technology. Much of Kukeen technology is concerned with empowering individuals to scrutinize anything in their world as they please. Their cultural and technological bias makes Kukeen masters of data reduction/analysis and sensor technology. They are creators of monitoring devices of many kinds.

Trade and Technology

Kukeen-designed sensor arrays are eagerly sought throughout the Empire for military and civilian applications of all kinds. Kukeen sensors usually have several times the range and precision of human-built sensors for the same cost. The only trouble is that Kukeen design assumes that the operator has ten tentacles. (In game terms the sensors op. difficulty numbers are increased by one level when the operator is unable to manipulate the controls with at least four limbs simultaneously.)

Kukeen in the Galaxy

The relationship between Xorruux and the Imperial Government is very tense. The Empire can never undertake sensitive military or political activity on this planet due to the impossibility of keeping any secrets. Standard Imperial methods of government are rendered useless by Kukeen freedom of information, and Imperial propagandists have enormous difficulty impressing such well-imformed beings. Instead Imperial representatives simply allow the Kukeen citizens an unimpeded view of the Imperial resolve and of the magnitude of the potential retribution should the Kukeen ever deliberately or inadvertently impede to goals of the New Order.

The Empire is determined that Kukeen sensor technology never falls into the hands of pirates, the Rebel Alliance or other criminal elements. To this end the local Moff has ordered continuous Star Destroyer patrols of the system. Several Interdictor cruisers have been stationed in the vicinity of Xorruux, accompanied by standard heavy cruisers. All craft approaching or leaving the planet are thoroughly inspected to ensure compliance with the ban on the Kukeen sensor trade.

Most Kukeen are irritated and distressed by these circumstances but few are willing to dare the wrath of the Empire. They are too well informed about the consequences of disobedience, and they know too well how Imperial spies can exploit the Kukeen information net to quickly identify and eliminate dissidents.

Large numbers have left the planet to pursue technical careers and many are attempting to establish colonies on remote worlds.

Statistics

Attribute Dice: 13D
DEXTERITY 1D+2/3D+2
KNOWLEDGE 2D+1/4D+1
MECHANICAL 1D+2/3D+1
PERCEPTION 2D+2/4D+2
STRENGTH 2D/4D
TECHNICAL 2D+2/3D+2
Height: 1.4-1.6m (tentacle span)
Move: 10/12

Special Skills

Knowledge skills - Sensor engineering (A): This advnaced skill is used to design sensor equipment of all types from hand-held scanners to massive sensor suites suitable for the largest capital ships and space stations. Requires sensor repair 5D.
Technical skills - Sensor repair: The skill concerned with the repair and maintainance of sensor equipment.

Special Abilities

Tentacles: Kukeen possess long prehensile tentacles. Add +1D to climbing/jumping rolls and to brawling rolls to hold onto opponents.

Story Factors

Technology embargo: The Kukeen homeworld is under an Imperial blockade. Kukeen sensor technology is rabidly sought-after but banned by the Empire outside Xorruux.
Reputation: Kukeen have a reputation for prying behaviour and they tend to be unfairly mistrusted.

Gamemaster Notes

Kukeen may become master technicians who can be of great service to the PCs or to their rivals. They also make great intelligence analysts. Any Kukeen who gains a reputation for disseminating superior Kukeen sensor technology to the Rebel Alliance or other forces hostile to the Empire is likely to become a target of bounty hunters. On the other hand buyers of this technology will pay handsomely.

Roleplaying Notes

Kukeen are inquisitive and very direct in their speech. Most conversation with a Kukeen inevitably comes to revolve around the numerous questions that the Kukeen will ask, even if the other speaker originally had a different intent.

Personality Notes

Kukeen are brazenly questioning and irreverent individualists. They are sharp-witted precise and logical ponderers.

Suggested Skills

Most Kukeen will have dice allocated to investigation, sensor operation and other sensor-related skills. Males will be skilled at search and females with hide.


Thokk

thokk.gif

Appearance and Biology

Thokks are thin, nimble, tall herbivorous insectoids native to the high-gravity ringed desert planet Kwenn (which is best known for its famous great starport, Kwenn Space Station). Thokks have four Arms and four legs which each end in four multiply-jointed digits which are interchangeably opposeable. The head is flat and triangular, with two pairs of antennae and two prominent compound eyes on either side of a set of mandibles. The thorax is long and upright; the abdonmen is held horizontally behind the legs. Sensitive spiney hairs sprout from the shoulders and back.

The Thokk exoskeleton is composed of a network of silaceous fibres and grains cemented by chitinous compounds. The exoskeleton has a rough and stony texture which is indicative of its origin. Throughout its life each thokk ingests small quantities of sand with its food. This sand is carried from the digestive tract and deposited in the exoskeleton. This kind of exoskeleton is common to insectoids of Kwenn, and provides much greater strength than the shells of arthropod life from standard-gravity worlds. The inner surface of the exoskeleton merges into a hard silaceous mesh which permeates all the interior body spaces, giving support to the Thokk's innards. Within a few years a Thokk naturally acquires the colour of the sand or dust found in its surroundings. On Kwenn this usually matches the crimson sands prevalent on that world, but rare oranger hues occur among Thokks living in saltpan regions. Thokks who have reached adulthood living in urban refuse sites acquire silvery and rusty tones.

Thokks inhabit hive complexes hidden in the rockier regions of Kwenn. They are not distinguished into biological castes or sexes, although they do experience strong instinctive hive loyalty. This takes the form of a compulsive and subrational concern for their extended family. Promiscuous hermaphroditic mating occurs whenever members of different hives meet.

Up to ten cricket-ball-sized eggs are ready to lay within three days but can be stored within the adult body indefinitely. The eggs are stored and tended in communal nursary chambers in the most secure sections of the hive. These caverns may contain tens of thousands of eggs. Hourly application of Thokk siliva keeps the eggs dormant until there is a need for new hatchlings.

Grubs in an egg-chamber emerge within minutes of each other. These white, fleshy, blind, limbless masses are fed dead vegtation and sand until they reach adult weight at six months. When feeding ceases, hunger induces the young to enter a chrysalis phase lasting several days.

The emergent adults have no memory of the larval experience but are born fully equipped with Thokk language and certain other instinctual abilities. If grubs are allowed to hunger prematurely then smaller adults result. Such Thokks are also proportionately mentally retarded. A premature Thokk shorter than twenty centimetres tall has only animal intelligence and will be unable to speak.

Throughout their entire lives Thokks learn additional abilities through play, experimentation and mimicking the behaviour of other intelligent beings. Members of many other species find these tendencies annoying. Residents of the colonial cities on Kwenn are well practiced at ignoring the natives, and the Thokks readily reciprocate.

Thokk saliva is a potent venom to other animals and plants on Kwenn, and to most off-world species. The siliva is spat at plant prey (most plants of the Thokk diet are ambulatory) or an enemy in combat. It takes several seconds for a thokk to become sufficiently angrily aroused to exude this toxic substance.

Temperament

Thokks are naturally inquisitive and superstitious. They have a tendency to excitedly deify mundane objects while remaining completely unimpressed by many of the greater wonders of Imperial technology. The strangely swinging balance between awestruck exhultation and nonchalance can be either humourous or exasperating to companions of Thokks. The popular idea that Thokks are erratic in the attitudes is a misunderstanding; each individual Thokk is goverened by perfectly rational priorities and expectations. The problem is that Thokk logic is usually rather obscure to non-Thokks.

Thokks are generally well-mannered and temperate but become wild and vicious when angered. When irritated or defensive, thokks can enter into a foaming spitting frenzy, which is very dangerous to friend and foe alike.

They enjoy gambling and strategy games. Most thokks are unconcerned that they live in poverty and have few possessions. Thokks take a cheerful, sometimes glib, approach to life, no matter what misfortunes are vistied upon them. Their bizzarre mystical beliefs give them a rather alien view of causality, making them appear to be either unfairly accepting and apathetic or else radically blameful and judgemental about common circumstances of life.

History and Culture

Thokks live in hive cities deep in the remote stone column forests of their homeworld. There they have learned the ancient art of cultivating and drirecting the millenial growth of the giant silaceous lifeforms. The oldest Thokk hives are entirely composed of stone columns grown and warped to the form of passages, cavernous halls, catwalks and elevated platforms. Newer hives supplement column manipulations with constructions of rope, metal and skeletal carapaces from gigantic insects.

Thokk religion is polytheistic, animist and revolves around most recognisable natural features of their environment. Thokks give particular importance to gods representing the ambulatory plants which they hunt, and astronomical features such as the sun and Kwenn's spectacular planetary ring. (Kwenn has no moon.)

Politics

Occassionally patrols from Kwenn Imperial garrisons vanish in the desert without trace. Even whole AT-AT walkers have disappeared without even transmitting a distress signal. When this happens the Thokks of the wilderness become targets for military reprisals, even though there is only the most flimsy circumstantial evidence of Thokk involvment. The garrison commanders cannot imagine that pirates or any other fringe group could maintain sufficient military strength in Kwenn's hostile wastes to be able to engineer the rapid eradication of huge military walkers. In fact the Thokks are completely innocent. Many senior Imperial Army officers on Kwenn have begun a petition to the planetary governor, seeking an official license to exterminate the Thokk species.

Technological Level

Thokks possess feudal technology insofar as they can smelt metals and produce crude metal tools. Thokks are able to create primative weapons up to the sophistication of a crossbow.

The most distinctive (and least well-known) feature of thokk technology is the craft of manipulating the growth of the giant red columns which form great stone forests covering about half of the surface of Kwenn. these columns grow so slowly that they are commonly regarded as inert. However thokk hives know the methods necessary to sculpt the growth of the columns as if they were clay, and the patience and collective memory to see through the implementation of their designs over the necessary millenia.

Trade and Technology

Thokks construct and sell all kinds of trinkets and ornaments in the streets and marketplaces of Kwenn's cities. Jewelry made from the polished carapaces of Kwenn's exotic insectoid animal life is popular with tourists at starports. For their part, Thokks will often go to ridiculous lengths to acquire apparently mundane human artifacts to which they attach obscure mystic value. For instance there is a particular hive who worship a deity vaguely associated with water pipes. Some of these Thokks have been known to give their lives to protect prized items of plumbing.

Thokks in the Galaxy

Thokks are almost completely restricted to their home planet. Those Thokks who have travelled "to the other side of the sky" are generally unimpressed with the outside universe, and never cease to believe that Kwenn is the centre of all existence.

Thokks on Kwenn are ignored by the general colonial populace. They are regarded as eccentric outlanders. They drift freely in and out of the colonial cities, and few non-thokks know how this is accomplished. (The cities are only open to the outside environment for the purpose of waste disposal.) Few are aware of the true vast numbers of the thokks in the wilderness, their social organization or of their miraculous ability to control the growth of the stone columns of Kwenn's wastes. Thokks are plentiful on Kwenn's streets. They beg. They busk. They peddle various simple goods and religious artifacts. They often challenge passers-by to enter games of skill or chance.

Statistics

Attribute Dice: 12D
DEXTERITY 3D/5D
KNOWLEDGE 1D/2D+2
MECHANICAL 0D+2/1D+2
PERCEPTION 3D+1/6D
STRENGTH 2D/4D
TECHNICAL 1D/2D+2
Height: 1.8-2.2m
Move: 10/12

Special Skills

Dexterity - Spitting: The skill involved in spitting to hit a specific target. Analogous to thrown weapons. This skill requires a round of preparation.
Technical - Stone column lore: The skill involved in the maipulation of the growth of the stone columns of Kwenn. This skill is usually applied in combined actions over several years. Visible alterations to the growth of stone columns takes at least several decades to witness. This skill is also used to establish empathetic or telepathic understanding between the thokk and a stone column.
Strength - Spit toxicity: The damage die code used for the Thokk spit when it comes into contact with another material. Reduced by 1D for multiple useage within one round. Examples: A Thokk spitting once in a round suffers no penalty to spit toxicity; spitting twice costs 1D to each damage roll; spitting thrice costs 2D; etc.

Special Abilities

Venomous spit: Thokks possess venomous siliva which can be spat at other beings as a combat attack.
Multiple arms: Thokks have four arms. Any two actions using spearate pairs of arms can be resolved simultaneously. Normal penalties for multiple skill use apply.
Heavy gravity: Thokks are adapted to high gravity environments. They suffer no penalties due to excessive gravity until three times standard gravity levels are reached.
Beast handling (Kwenn): Thokks learn this skill at half the normal cost. This skill enables the user to understand, anticipate and control the behaviour of the animals and plants native to Kwenn. Thokks often use the skill to ride huge crawper beasts.
Survival (desert): Thokks gain an extra +1D for every die of initial skill dice spent in this skill specializtion when the character is first generated.

Story Factors

Superstition: Thokks are technologically ignorant and prone to forming superstitious explanations for everyday occurennces. Thokks believe in a huge panoply of deities, each of which has a very well defined sphere of responsibility.
Ignored outlanders: Thokks are generally ignored by the non-Thokk inhabitants of Kwenn. They are regarded with indifference, pity or contempt. Few residents of Kwenn really care about their origin, their movements or their fate.

Suggested skills

All Thokks are likely to have a few dice inclimbing/jumping, survival: desert, spitting and spit toxicity. Thokks who spend a great amount of time in colonial cities or in the outer galaxy are likely to use con, gambling, bargain and pickpocketing. Thokks who spend most of their time in hives are likely to improve their metallurgy, primative construction, beast riding and stone column lore skills.


Zosakh

zosakh.gif

Appearance and Biology

Zosakh inhabit the scorcing wastes of the second planet in the Anbun system. Although they are certainly not the planet's largest carnivore, their intelligence puts them at the top of the food chain.

The most distinctive Zosakh physical characteristic is their fearsome maw. All but the smallest juveniles possess more than one articulate set of jaws lined with knife-like teeth of up to ten centimetres length. The jaws grow in a concentric manner, layered over each other in the same mouth, but they move independently about their hinges. The largest and oldest members of the species may have as many as eleven jaws, although legends are told of several heroic individuals with as many as fifteen. Their mouth arsenals are an adaptation to maintain a secure hold on large or extremely active prey; a Zosakh hunter is very difficult to dislodge once he or she has made a bite.

Around the edges of the mouth is a panoply of inward-pointing head-horns. The four compond eyes and two small nostrils are situated on a bulbous fleshy tuft hanging below a shovel-shaped bony growth at the very top of the head just above the outermost upper jaw. The head leads to a well-muscled neck and semi-upright body. A row of dorsal spines neander from the top of the head jsut behind the eyes to the tip of the vestigal tail. The legs and arms are long, thick and powerful but the skeleton is jointed to allow flexibility in case the prey thrashes wildly. The bones are able to freely dislocate and relocate. The feet and fingers bear vicious claws which are used both for burrowing in sandy soil and for tearing apart prey. The two hands each have two opposeable thumbs, one on each side of the palm. The reptilian hide is tough and wrinkled, alternately leathery and scaley in parts. Horny spikes follow the edges of the arms and legs. Zosakh are coloured sandy grey or cream for camouflage in their desert habitat.

Zosakh hatch from leathery water-tight egg sacs laid in clutches of three in special burrows dug and guarded by the mother. Nesting sites are chosen with a line of sight to a permanent watery oasis. The eggs are approximately fifteen centimetres long and hatch after about forty standard days. The hatchlings are instinctively able to walk and speak immediately after birth. (It seems clear that the rudiments of Zosakh language are genetically rather than socially based.)

Temperament

Zosakh are much gentler among themselves and with other intelligent beings than their awesome fangs would suggest. However they have forocious appetites and will attack their prey with a toothy frenzy which can be terrifying to behold. Their reptilian nature makes them very sluggish and lethargic during the cool of night. Visible stretches of water will consistently excite uncontrollable mating urges in a Zosakh.

Culture and History

The Zosakh understand little of the Empire and galactic civilization. Almost all of the population live a traditional semi-nomadic hunting lifestyle in small tribal groups. A patriarch leads each family group, consisting of his wives, children and adult male descendents. Unmarried females from unrelated tribes are ever-welcome visitors. They wander the sandy desert wastes without keeping permanent territory. When a family arrives at a fresh hunting-ground they will search out a patch of suitably firm soil in which to burrow for temporary underground shelter.

These shelters are used in the most common Zosakh hunting practice. A band of up to two dozen hunters will partially bury themselves at the entrances to their burrows while the most agile individual attempts to lure a larger predator by repeatedly harassing and biting it and then leaping out of reach. When the enraged predator reaches the middle of the burrow ground the other hunters leap from their hiding holes to sink in their teeth and spears. Smaller game is obtained by means of booby-traps or direct harpoon chases by Zosakh working individually.

The coordinated ambush hunts are one of the principal ways by which females judge the worth of potential mates. The baiter is selected from among the youngest unmarried males. Those who show the most grace and daring in this ‘lure-dance’ are favoured.

However it is the males who ultimately make the mating choices because they are the less numerous sex. Fewer are hatched than females. Many of these are killed or mortally wounded in their first lure-dance before they have the chance to acquire the requisite skills.

The mating season occurs whenever tribes meet at an open body of water (usually a volcanic spring of some kind). At this time the females become very aggressive towards each other, bickering incessantly. They spend days simply trying to intimidate each other and impressing the males with their vigour and verbal wit. The teeth are also displayed proudly during mating contests: females dance wildly about, kicking up sand, hissing loudly and gnashing their fangs in the air to catch the attention of a favoured male.

The teeth are central to Zosakh communication and social status. Each set of jaws is opened and closed at varying rates to convey visually coded information on top of the verbal hissing component of the language. Deeper levels of meaning can be communicated by older individuals with their greater number of jaws. Zosakh are intensely aware of the finest details of their teeth. They recognise each other by their teeth in the same way that many humanoids recognise faces. Zosakh spend a large fraction of their time between hunts simply sitting in their burrows and cleaning their teeth with sand, their fingers or any other convenient implements. In fact sentientologists speculate that the need for improved toothpicks gave the original impetus for the ancestors of the Zosakh to develop tools more generally and to evolve higher intelligence.

Politics

Zosakh politics operates on a very local scale. The patriarch of a particular family grouping gives orders regarding migration and when and how a hunt must be conducted. Beneath this authority, Zosakh power is determined according to the quality and extent of an individual's teeth and jaws. Unmarried females who wander between tribes in search of permanent husbands are only governed by this dental precendence.

Technology Level

Zosakh have not progressed beyond the stone age. Because food is plentiful on Anbun II the Zosakh experience no pressure towards technological innovation. However they have invented many primative but deadly melee weapons and booby-traps. Like most artifacts of Zosakh culture the materials which comprise these weapons deteriorate rapidly at temperatures low enough for most sentient beings to find comfortable.

Trade and Technology

The temperature-fragility of Zosakh items enhances their attraction to art and weapons collectors in the Galaxy at large, and a vigorous trade in Zosakh weaponry has emerged in some fashionable circles. A few shrewd Zosakh weapons-crafters have grown rich by trading in especially fragile and ornate arms which need frequent replacement. Most of these enterprising beings have purchased advanced digging machinery to construct vast opulent underground warrens complete with droid servents and enormous harems.

Zosakh in the Galaxy

The Anbun system is a popular temporary hyperspace jump point at the intersection of several important hyperlanes in the Mid-Rim. It has never been colonised due to the inhospitability of all of the planets. The second planet supports life but surface temperatures average between fifty and eighty standard degrees, at least half-way to the boiling point of water.

Dedicated off-worlders with sufficient heat protection have no trouble making contact with Zosakh if they have a need. The Zosakh have been visited countless times since the dawn of the Old Republic and they comfortably accept the existence of a great galactic civilization outside their world. They are always happy to trade for high technology luxuries. They regard alien traders as a renewable resource to be exploited, much like Anbun II's oases, herd beasts and sand squid. However most are not keen to visit the colder inhabited worlds of the Empire.

Statistics

Attribute Dice: 10D
DEXTERITY 2D/4D
KNOWLEDGE 1D/2D+1
MECHANICAL 1D/3D+2
PERCEPTION 2D/4D
STRENGTH 2D/6D
TECHNICAL 1D/3D+2
Height: 0.9-2.2m
Move: 10/13

Special Skills

Dexterity - Thrown Weapons: rocks, harpoons, spear. Time to use: less that one round.
Technical - Primative construction: The skill of constructing huts, rope bridges and similar structures from primative materials such as bone, rope and wood. Time to use: from one hour to several hours.
Technical - Traps: The skill of constructing traps useful for hunting or combat situations. Tested analogously to the demolitions skill. Time to use: from ten minutes to several hours.

Special Abilities

Teeth: Zosakh have several concentric sets of jaws; the number of sets depends on age. the bite does strength+2D damage per round. To extricate itself from the bite, a character or creature must make a successful strength test against the Zosakh. Holding prey or an enemy using teeth is a free action for the Zosakh.
Temperature sensitivity: Zosakh are adapted to life in hot conditions; Zosakh who are exposed to standard temperature conditions suffer a cumulative 1D damage per hour of exposure. Those exposed to even colder conditions suffer 3D damage per minute.

Gamemaster notes

The peculiarities of the Zosakh can be quite comical. Although few Zosakh leave Ambun II some might be found as slaves toiling under temperature conditions which would be unbearable to humans. It is possible that a more adventurous Zosakh might acquire a customised thermal protection suit and enter a mercenary or bounty hunting career. A strong Zosakh NPC can be an ideal answer to groups of PCs who have developed delusions of invulnerability (especially those which include a Wookiee).

Personality Notes

Zosakh are quite primal in their goals but capable of great cunning an subtlety in pursuing them. For a stone-age species they are surprisingly unconcerned by the existence of a greater galactic society. (Simply because they have never really been impressed with any alien's teeth.)

Suggested Skills

Zosakh will be unlikely to have many skills which involve high technology or vehicles. Primative combat skills, survival and perception skills will be those best developed.


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