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Dralasites are a fictional extraterrestrial race of short, rubbery, gray amoeboid creatures capable of changing their form to a limited extent by extending and retracting pseudopods.[1][2]

HistoryEdit

These aliens first appeared as part of the Star Frontiers science fiction role-playing game (RPG) published in 1982 by TSR, Inc.[1]

In the 1990s, Dralasites were introduced as part of that same company's Spelljammer game setting, a somewhat steampunk fantasy approach to space exploration for Advanced Dungeons & Dragons.[3]

In 2004, Dralasites were included in d20 Future, a science fiction supplement to the d20 Modern RPG published by Wizards of the Coast (a successor company to TSR).[4]

Basic physiologyEdit

Dralasite are about 1.3 meters tall and 1 meter wide. They weight about 65 kg and have a body temperature of 30°C. Their average life span is 250 years.[2]

Though they are a higher form of multi-cellular life and are approximately as intelligent as human beings, Dralasite have some similarities to amoebas in that they have no bones or hard body parts. The Dralasites's central nerve bundle (brain), numerous small hearts and other internal organs float in a mixture of protein and organic fluids.[1][3]

Their skin is a flexible membrane that is very tough and rough-textured. A network of nerves and veins on the surface of the Dralasites's skin intersects at a Dralasites's two eye spots. They see shapes and light and darkness very clearly, and can see a difference between distinct colors (blue and green, for example) as one being darker than the other, but they do not see actual colors. The most important sense for a Dralasites is smell. They breathe directly through their skin, and the entire membrane is sensitive to odors. Their sense of smell is so keen they can identify persons by smell alone and can recognize familiar smells on objects or persons. The membrane also is sensitive to touch and to vibrations, allowing Dralasites to hear and feel. [1][2][3]

As described in the original Star Frontiers rulebook, the keen senses of Dralasites allows them to detect lies told to them 5% of the time, a percentage that can be improved by the expenditure of experience points during a RPG campaign. While Dralasite in d20 Future retain their heightened senses, they do not have a special lie detection ability in these latter rules.[2]

[4][5]

Because of their physiology:

Dralasite do not normally wear clothing, because it makes breathing difficult and interferes with their sense of smell. They usually carry their equipment on web belts. When they must wear clothing to protect themselves, they use special materials that let air reach their skin.[2]

Dralasite are omnivores but lack a gastrointestinal tract. Instead they consume their food by surrounding it and sealing it inside their body until absorbed. Having no lungs, Dralasites breathe by absorbing oxygen directly through their skin and speak by forming a mouth through which air is forced by a mechanism that works like a bellows. A Dralasite's voice can vary from a soft whisper to a thundering roar and from a bass rumble to a piercing screech. Among themselves, they also use shapes, skin patterns and touch to communicate. [1][2][3]

LimbsEdit

Dralasite usually travel with triped locomotion by forming three short legs, but bipedal and quadrupedal motion are possible as well. Dralasite typically form one or two manipulative limbs (arms with mitten-like hands) for any given task. Being approximately as dextrous as human beings, the formation of more than two or three hands simultaneously rarely benefits the ease at which a task may be accomplished.[1][3]

ReproductionEdit

All Dralasite go through male, female and asexual stages during their lives. These phases can be controlled with medicines. In order to reproduce, males release spores into the air which drift until they become attached to a female. A young Dralasite then "buds" off its mother, eventually maturing and dropping off.[1][3]

SocietyEdit

As described in the original Star Frontiers rulebook:

Dralasite are philosophical and thoughtful. Their communities are small, and many Dralasite prefer to live alone. Dralasite do not care about wealth, power or status symbols. They judge themselves by the quality of their ideas and their ability to discuss important ideas wisely. Dralasite often hold large public meetings to discuss new ideas. Discussions and debates are among their favorite ways to relax. Steam baths are another favorite Dralasites recreation. They mix perfumes and intoxicants with the steam. These affect Dralasite the same way alcohol does a Human...[1][2]

Other intelligent races have noted that Dralasite have an over-developed sense of humor:

They love old jokes and puns that make Humans groan. Many human comedians who could not find work in Human cities have become rich performing on Dralasite worlds.[1][2]

Despite the above generalizations about their personality types, Dralasite have been encountered in a variety of roles, including merchants, organized crime figures, bureaucrats, etc.[1]

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 [1] Star Frontiers science fiction role-playing game
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 [2] Star Frontiers, "Alpha Dawn"
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 [3] Spelljammer, Monsters of the Void
  4. 4.0 4.1 d20 Future, Wizards of the Coast, 2004
  5. Per d20 Future rules:
    • Scent (Ex): A Dralasite gains the scent ability.
    • Skill Bonus: Due to their inscrutable facial expressions and their uncanny knack for reading others, Dralasite gain a +2 species bonus on Bluff and Sense Motive checks.