Thursday, March 7, 2013

Invid's Guide to the Star Wars Universe: Alien Species (#82)

(Obviously, still no regular internet connection for me. But I'm still here.)

811. Orlak. The ambiguously canonical Orlak apparently have pointy ears and "nasty-looking" tails. They also can interbreed with humans, as evidenced by the fact that the sole Orlak character is half-human/half-Orlak.

He also was named Kelly and looked quite a bit like Wolverine, a combination that amuses me.

Rating: 2/5, because that's funny. (If it hadn't been, it'd have been 1/5, because I'm savage and cruel.)

812. Orrananans. The Orrananananananans... were supposedly rendered extinct by Xim the Despot, according to Evocar, the famous play written by a Hutt.

Rating: 3/5, because I'm never sick of hearing about the play written by a Hutt, and the name Orranananananan...anan... reminds me of one of the Discworld books. (I'm also apparently silly.)

813. Orryxians. The Orryxians had the nickname "Cats," but they'd hate to hear one call them that. Makes one wonder if they actually had any resemblance to cats (there's no way to tell from their article). They also are famous for their booze, Orryxian Catsblood. Hm.

Rating: 2/5. Casual ethnic slurs and booze, everybody!

814. Orthellins. All we really know about the Orthellins is that Lando Calrissian apparently got his private spaceship, Lady Luck, from a member of their royal family.

Probably because... Well, probably because he had sex with her.

Rating: 2/5. That... does sound like Lando.

815. Ortolans. The Star Wars galaxy would be an interesting place to visit, as noted by old jokes from the early days of the internet that note that you probably live there if the blue elephant playing the piano wasn't a drug/alcohol-induced hallucination.

Yes, Ortolans are blue dudes, and they look like pudgy little... elephants. Sorta.

They like to eat, and they like music. The Ortolan we see in Jabba's palace in ROTJ was a musician who was paid in food. (He wasn't especially bright. He also only laughed during the one scene because everybody else was, so he figured he ought to as well.)

There was also an Ortolan Jedi, although he's actually only really a retcon.

Rating: 4/5. Little blue elephant Jedi, even retconned little blue elephant Jedi, are... well, hardly bad.

816. Ossan. Ossans... apparently have been described in at least three incompatible ways. General agreement seems to be that they're not very bright and rather strong. And chubby.

Rating: 1/5. Enough of that.

817. Oswaft. Oswaft are a race of gigantic spacegoing jellyfish-like beings. They're comparable in size to small capital ships (average size seems to be a wingspan of over half a mile-and yes, they have wings because they also look like manta rays), excrete valuable materials as waste, can enter hyperspace just by thinking about it, and communicate with electromagnetic radiation of sufficient intensity to destroy a poorly protected spacecraft (such as a fighter or a larger vessel with its shields down).

NOTE: Significant spoilers for the Lando Calrissian Adventures, a set of stories I recommend, follow.

Their mere existence was considered threatening enough to the Emperor that he assigned one of his allies, Rokur Gepta, Sorcerer of Tund and Centran Scrivinir, to blockade their home, the ThonBoka (literally "star cave," as in "cave made of stars," in the Oswaft language), and destroy the influx of nutrients into it. Lando Calrissian had befriended one of them when he (the Oswaft) had mistakenly tried to eat the Millennium Falcon, thinking it was something like a ThonBokan crustacean (he was smart enough that he wasn't under that impression for very long), and when he heard about what was going on, he came to help (he incidentally was also interested in settling accounts with Rokur Gepta, who was sort of his archnemesis at that point).

Things went really far south when, while Lando was trying to help the Oswaft elders come up with a plan, some other elders went and "shouted" at the lead ship of the blockade fleet... and because "shouting" was a concentrated form of their electromagnetic speech, they melted it and got the fleet all mad.

The fleet killed quite a few Oswaft and threatened to use one of Rokur Gepta's superweapons to render life in the ThonBoka impossible unless Lando gave himself up (apparently Gepta was allowed to not exterminate the Oswaft if he didn't feel like it-you'd think the Emperor would be annoyed at that), but fortunately, a really big fleet of spaceships that were really well armed showed up and decided to kick the Imperial fleet out.

And I could tell you who they were, but I want to talk about them later. (You could read the book yourself, for that matter.)

Anyway, the Oswaft are awesome.

Rating: 5/5. One of my favorite alien races from one of my favorite Star Wars stories.

818. Ovoni. Humanoids. Rebelled against Empire. One was Jedi. Now he dead, 'cuz Darth Vader.

Rating: 1/5. This has been an exercise in brevity.

819. P'Chek. The P'Chek were an ancient civilization that apparently resembled Twi'leks, and they may well be the oldest civilization known to exist in the Star Wars galaxy.

I've mentioned civilizations that are quite old, such as the Gree, Celestials, the Kwa, and the Force Demons. All quite old, and they all also rubbed shoulders with each other, because their civilizations existed around one hundred thousand years before the movies' era.

The P'Chek existed a little bit before that. Their civilization was at its height one billion years before the movie era.

For reference, one billion is ten thousand times the size of one hundred thousand, and there wasn't any such thing as multi-cellular life on Earth a billion years ago.

Rating: 4/5, because DANG it's fun to read about a probably unimportant civilization that's super-mega-old.

820. P'w'ecks. The P'w'ecks were slaves to the Ssi-Ruuk. They were probably technically the same species. They were extremely downtrodden and often depicted as having no wills of their own, but eventually the P'w'ecks had an uprising and formed an alliance with their human neighbors on the planet Bakura. This uprising was partly enabled by the Yuuzhan Vong invasion, making it one of the few places where the Vong didn't totally mess up everything for everybody. (It was ambiguous in the stories as to whether the P'w'ecks had survived the Yuuzhan Vong, but apparently it's been established that they did and are doing well. Which is good, as I'm sick and tired of reading about all the dead guys the Yuuzhan Vong left in their wake. THEY WEREN'T THAT INTERESTING, GUYS.)

Rating: 4/5. This may seem high, but I'm going to talk about the Ssi-Ruuk later, and they're cool, so these guys are cool by association (what with being essentially the same species and all).

-Signing off.

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