Clawdites, normal-sized humanoids who can change their appearance at will, are a genetic offshoot of the humanoid natives of Zolan, a planet found somewhere in the Mid Rim. Their development came about by accident, when scientists sought to trigger long-dormant skin-changing genes among the Zolanders to protect them from solar radiation. This event, which occurred centuries ago, triggered the divergence of the Clawdite species from the Zolander evolutionary line. Some rumours indicate that radioactive bombardment from outer space was the reason for the change in the Zolanders, rather than a failed experiment, resulting in the creation of this new race.
The native language of this species is known as Clawdite, consisting mainly of hissing sibilants and stressed, guttural croaks. They are a religious race, unlike their cousin species Zolander.
Clawdites are able to change the colour, texture, and shape of their skins, allowing a Clawdite to mimic the appearance of other humanoid species of the same general physical shape. This does not allow Clawdites to generate extra limbs or other appendages, but they are able to imitate the texture and patterns of skin-tight clothing. Shape shifting is a special skill that some Clawdites have developed to a greater degree, allowing them to change the length, colour, shape, and texture of their hair, as well as the coloration of their eyes. This fine control can even be used to alter specific portions of their body. It takes a good deal of patience and practice for the Clawdites to perform this change. Furthermore, it is an extremely uncomfortable process during which they must endure great pain to shift and maintain a shape other than their natural form. Expert shifters employ special therapeutic oils and meditative techniques to aid their transformations. Depending on the skill of the individual Clawdite, they might simply change their facial appearance or alter their entire body shape. The ability to alter their shape allows the Clawdites to blend in to enemy camps, where they could gather intelligence or commit crimes.
When they are at "rest," a Clawdite is indistinguishable from a regular Zolander. Known Clawdites, however, have long been ostracized from Zolander society, deemed sinful and impure, and forced to live in secured ghettos. This prejudice led to many conflicts between the two races, including several periods of civil war.
Galactic coordinates: (206, -226)
System coordinates: (14, 13)
Planet type: temperate/breathable
Planet size: 7 x 7
Chancellor Jonpas Auditore
Total population: 10,765,165 inhabitants
Hireable Population: 1,000 People
Civilisation level: 5.3600%
Tax level: 5.0000%
Planet income: 1,426,704 credits
Tax income: 71,335 credits
Located in the Zolan system in the Lambda sector, the planet Zolan has been described as a place of peace and harmony, but it was not always so. Also, despite its relatively small size, the planet Zolan is home to two separate sentient races, the Zolanders and their offshoot race, the Clawdites, who are best known for their ability to shift their shape to appear as other sentient races.
Historically, Clawdites were oppressed by the Zolander; Clawdite men and women were put to work in mines and on farms, almost like slaves, while the Zolander chose positions requiring little manual labor, such as administrators, politicians and businessmen. The gulf between the two near-culture species eventually grew beyond the task-level to ideological differences. This ideological tension was stretched to its breaking point and a planet-wide civil war broke out. After a fairly lengthy war the two races have now come to recognize each other as equals and are moving forward together and promoting peaceful unity on the planet.
With the exception of two thin glacier fields surrounding the northern and southern-most poles, Zolan is a planet marked with lush forests and jungles, which exude the tranquility and peaceful calm of its present age. Many have found serenity deep within the jungles and forests, the local wildlife not seeming to mind the occasional being walking through admiring the planet's beauty or sitting quietly in meditation. Some species visiting the planet have even chosen to find the calm they seek in the beauty and stillness of the frigid glacial fields.
Even the modern cities and settlements have done much to promote harmony, not only between the native races but also between technology and nature. Care has been taken to incorporate as much of the natural landscape as possible into the structures being constructed, so as not to deforest or otherwise destroy the natural environment or displace the wildlife. To date, this has seemed to be extremely beneficial for all.
Zolan is occasionally referred to by off-worlders as Zolander, either because of the system's sun or the Zolander race that lives there. Neither the Zolander race nor the Clawdite race refer to the planet with this moniker, as they see it as culturally and ethnically inappropriate since the planet is home to them both and neither wishes to further underscore the diversity which had plunged the planet into its years-long civil war.