Friday, April 11, 2014

Invid's Guide to the Star Wars Universe: Alien Species (#115)

The Massive Index (Posts #1-#100)
The Less Massive Index (Posts #101-#110)

(This post excludes "Travelers of Gap Nine" because they're not a species that I can tell-they're actually two things, a Sith empire and a Jedi organization under different names.)

1141. Trandoshans, or T'Doshok. The Trandoshans are generally big, scary reptile people, comparable in size and strength to Wookiees. They also have clumsy claws that make tool use seem improbable, but they use them anyway.

Physically, their most notable trait other than being towering "lizard" people is their regeneration, which seems to take place at a mostly reasonable rate; one Trandoshan who had lost all of his limbs in battle still had minimal frail regrown appendages twenty years later. (Perhaps the heavy drinking he'd taken up to dull the pain was screwing with the healing process.)

The comparison with Wookiees is significant; during the time of the Empire, there was a species-wide contract between the Trandoshans and the Empire to hunt Wookiees, since a high proportion of the Wookiee populace was enslaved during that time period, and they stood a better chance against hulking Wookiees than human bounty hunters. Of course, the average Trandoshan, while very cunning, also tends towards a certain brand of stupidity, and Wookiees often outsmart them.

As with a disproportionate number of reptile folk, the Trandoshans are rather evil-ish, often eating their siblings when they hatch and having no room for the gentle emotions; even though they stop their cannibalism once they reach a certain age, they still regularly kill their own family members in adulthood and treat that as normal.

I'm heartened to see that there's at least one distinctive Trandoshan character model; each time that happens, the less likely all of them are to look exactly the same.

Anyway, the Trandoshans, like their cousins the Saurin, follow a religion involving a goddess called the Scorekeeper, who tracks their successful and unsuccessful hunts and favors the most successful or some such thing. If they are shamed, their score is zeroed unless they can kill the one who humiliated them.

It's supposedly rare for Trandoshans to be heretical; only one named character seems to fit the description, and he seems to actually be so nasty that he's been cast out by the others for being a jerk. You have to wonder what kind of ridiculous things a lizard guy would have to do to achieve that.

Also, there's apparently a Trandoshan tradition called the lizard dance.

Rating: 4/5. While the Trandoshans are largely irredeemable monsters, there's always a place in a story for such a character; it's just unfortunate that this is a species-wide trait. Also, lizard dance. That's right up there with poison pie.

1142. Tratlin. All we know is that a Rebel Alliance to Restore the Republic operative was one.

Rating: 1/5. Suddenly, it seems like every article is using "Alliance to Restore the Republic" rather than "Rebel" or "Rebellion." Way to pad your word count, guys.

1143. Tren. The Tren are virtually human blue-purple people. They voluntarily joined the Empire because they valued order over morality, with a few exceptions; even those opposed to the Empire ended their protests when the final vote approving membership was counted.

The Tren have several colonies off their homeworld, but the exact name of their homeworld or of individual colonies is uncertain.

Rating: 2/5. Eh... That was ultimately really generic, but at least there's something there.

1144. Trianii. The Trianii are a fairly advanced, very independent group of cat people with an independent space nation with at least seven worlds, noted to be commonly mistaken for Cathars, Catuman, and Togorians. Supposedly, female Trianii are superior in basically every way and thus dominate their society (that's not sexist at all! /sarcasm), forming the entirety of the ruling bodies.

Trianii also have prehensile tails, which rather sets them apart from most cat aliens.

Notably, the Trianii follow a large number of religions, but these religions all formed a sort of coalition a long time ago, and all agreed on a common code of conduct; while the religions are still mostly separate and have distinctions, they all get along and respect each other quite a lot. Refreshing.

Amusingly, that part of the Trianii is listed in the "biology" section of their article. I don't think that's how religion works, guys.

Rating: 4/5. The Trianii have plenty of stereotypical cat alien features, but they have enough distinct features as well that I like them.

1145. Triffians. Triffians are short, generally rotund beings with distinctive, flashy faces, shaped rather like crescents. They're basically birds-but-not-birds, having body shapes and legs rather reminiscent of chickens, but no feathers or beaks and arms instead of wings.

One of them finished fourth in the podrace in Episode I, meaning he came in ahead of Sebulba, who was apparently his long-time rival.

Rating: 3/5. This is based on appearance.

1146. Trinovates. Trinovates have three eyes, and come from a fertile, resource-rich planet-or so one presumes from the idea that this homeworld is covered in farms and mines.

Rating: 1/5. One was a gambler.

1147. Trintic. Many Trintic were among the non-Tai'ni workers involved in a labor dispute. Their gait is described as "lumbering."

Rating: 1/5.

1148. Tripods. Okay, just going to get this out of the way: I always think of the Tripods of the same-named series whenever I read "Tripod" with a capital "T," even slightly over the Martian tripods from The War of the Worlds, even though I only ever read the first book in the series and read a couple of comic strips that ran in the back of a handful of Boy's Life backissues I ended up with somehow.

On subject, the "tripods" are a race known among themselves as "the People" who live on a planet known among themselves as "the World." They are referred to as "tripods" because of their body shape. A number of them were abducted by an automated Imperial warship that mistook them for the men of a long-gone Imperial garrison that was apparently placed on their homeworld. (Said warship was not terribly bright.)

As an awkwardly constructed species from a primitive culture, they were in trouble on board the chaotic ship, heavily inhabited by random and often dangerous beings and droids, including a number of Gamorreans who had come to believe that they were soldiers from a long-gone Imperial garrison. (The ship might have been stupid, but it also had brainwashing powers, and they worked a little too well on the Gamorreans.) A friendly Talz (see the earlier link to the Tai'ni) who had somehow ended up on the ship protected them, and they presumably were eventually returned to their homeworld.

If I recall correctly, the "tripods" believed they had been pulled into a spirit world or hell or some such thing.

Rating: 2/5. You have to like the occasional instance of unidentifiable beings.

1149. Tritonites. Tritonites are insectoids who follow a religion centered around a mysterious, controversial figure known only as "Gactimus." Apparently, there are multiple clashing cults that follow this figure (maybe), and the Tritonites' version bans all forms of entertainment, making their home moons "dead" socially.

They apparently hang around the spaceports on these moons, which are frequent stops for public transit systems, and try to hand out some form of religious tracts to passersby.

Rating: 2/5. Entertaining.

1150. Trogodiles. Trogodiles are cave crocodile people.

Rating: 4/5. I've gone on record as saying there can never be too many crocodile people. I continue to stand by my statement.

-Signing off.

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