Rosahomin, a Sci-Fi take on Dryads
Strange plant-creatures from Rosetta II, the Rosahomin are, for a small portion of their lives, roughly humanoid creatures, fully sentient, and capable of interacting with the galaxy.
During the humanoid phase of their life span, the Rosahomid are roughly five feet tall, and shaped approximately like a human. The lower half of their body bears a rough, flexible skin, much like bark, while their upper body is a curious melange of coarse, yellow structures akin to long hairs, woven into a mat of brightly colored flower petals. Their eyes are a relatively 'simple' affair compared to other species, a compound structure of hexagonal lenses set on their head.
Rather than the traditional hands, they have a small cluster of tentacles at the end of each upper limb, which they use for grasping tools.
The Rosahomid humanoid form is the reproductive 'spore' of a species of tremendous plant, native to the second planet of Rosetta. Vast tree-like creatures, reaching up to three miles into the sky, they must spread around the land very thinly, so as not to starve each other to death. And as they grew, more traditional ways of seeding the land began to fail, so they evolved self-mobile seeds. These seeds, too, entered the evolutionary chain, competing with animals amongst their parents roots and shadows for food and water, amongst each other and the plants of the forests for space. In time, the seed of sapience began to flower within them, although it did not reach full blossom until they were uplifted by the Genorri, and given the rudiments of a culture.
The Rosahomid is 'born' when a seed-pod is formed within the roots of their parent tree, eventually working its way to the surface, where it flowers, unfolding to release the young Rosahomid. Shortly after birth, the newborn creature releases a powerful pheremone, calling the 'adults' nearest the tree to come and become its 'parents'. Childhood for these creatures is brief at best, a mere four to five terran years before they are expected to fend for themselves through out their adolescence of approximately two years. At six or seven, they begin to be considered adults. Typically, within the year after adulthood, the Rosahomid will mate, and lay its seeds in the ground. Truly hermaphroditic, any given Rosahomid 'adult' may reproduce with any other Rosahomid 'adult'.
With the gene-engineering impressed by the Genorri, they no longer die after their reproductive cycle is completed, and are free to live the full span of their lives, which may last up to a total of forty terran years, including childhood.
Rosahomid sight and hearing are both extremely rudimentary. Their compound eyes are far better at detecting motion than discerning shape, although they are minimally capable of this, made only more difficult by universal green-blue colorblindness. Hearing, too is very poor, barely enough to handle basic linguistic need, as both hearing and speech organs were grafted on to the basic system by the civilization that uplifted them. These basic senses are augmented by truly fantastic senses of scent and feel. Much as a shark may smell blood in the water from miles away, the Rosahomid can smell even the faintest traces within the air, and their language is augmented by their own pheremones, as well as the ability to quite literally feel the breeze from the slight gestures they make in the air to further augment their language.
While technically omnivorous, whenever possible, the Rosahomid will prefer to eat a diet of simple grains and grasses. Further, they are capable of photosynthesis, though this is not enough to fully feed them, only extending their ability to survive without eating.
Having been uplifted into full sentience by another race, the Rosahomid have been deeply imprinted and shaped by their parent race. So much has been done for them, along the path, that though they are no longer guided by their former masters, they still retain icons and pictures of prominent individuals, worshiping them as something akin to a demi-god.
Because of the triple influence of their former masters, their brief lifespans, and the ultimately self-sacrifical nature of their natural lives, the Rosahomid have little concept of personal possession, individual accomplishment, or the like. Because of this, they have little individual motivation to act for themselves, however, the same influences tend to cause them to act for the good of the community and the next generation. They tend to congregate in large groups produced from the same tree, calling this extended number their 'family', and all tend to work towards the good of both the nebulous family, as well as the tree which gave birth to them.
In their natural state, the Rosahomid tend towards communal life, with single strong minds or small groups of the same coming to the fore to act as the group's direction or head. While they will listen to and obey this head, loyalty is not to 'her', but rather to the group as a whole, and orders that are obviously deletorious to the group will be disobeyed.
Technologically, the Rosahomid still largely rely on the gifts of their uplifters, having at best a nebulous grasp of physics, chemistry, and mathematics. Advancement in these fields is slow, and will, in most games, lag behind to well behind the majority of other races. Many of their starships are older, purchased from their old masters or the other races, cobbled together, rickety fleets of only Infinity-know-what. However, they have a natural talent for agrarian development and terraforming, and are able to turn even the poorest of worlds into paradises in incredibly short order.
Should they become involved in warfare, they will generally disdain the ship-to-ship combat and heavy energy weapons of the elder races, preferring instead to board enemy ships, or to lure their enemies planet side, so that they may utilize effective bio-chemical weaponry. They will also readily enter combat as marines or ground troops, wielding simple slug throwers or low grade laser weaponry, leaving them at a certain disadvantage. Yet, they are often willing to sustain losses that would horrify the elder races, without so much as a blink of a compound eye. They are, after all, going to die shortly anyway.
Because their population is capable of growing in explosions, as each successive wave of new trees matures, the Rosahomid are extremely aggressive colonizers, laying claim to every world they can lay their tentacles upon. Even the most marginal of worlds will be taken, so long as there is sufficient sunlight for their trees to grow in.
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? Responses (7)-7
Updated: Well, it doesn't feel quite done, but i"m going to push it live anyway.
Well, it could use more, not sure what, but I really like the idea.
I think their poor vision limits their military use though.
To me, I get a feeling of sadness from the Rosahomin. Their uplift seems to have been rather strangely chosen, they dont seem ideal cantidates in my opinion. Maybe if we were to see a bit of their benefactors we might be able to glean a better understanding of this obviously subtle and nuanced race.
Actually, I can understand their uplift - they are, after all, great terraformers. Some of the Elders might want to use them to cultivate a rather barren swath of space, and use them to hold those worlds until he is ready to harvest.
Likewise, an ecologically-minded Elder might want to populate a corner of the galaxy with fairly ecologically-friendly sentients.
I agree with Scras, and I would add that it seems that the Rosahomin could definitely be used for more sinister purposes- manipulated into destroying the ecosystem of an enemy race's world, or told/tricked into slavery in all but name as a race of terraforming tools.
While an interesting idea at heart, it's not at all plausibly defined. How could, for example, a species with rudimentary understanding of mathematics and physics operate starships, even if provided with all fuel and spare parts? Even economics wouldn't work, as they have no sense of possession...
Their biology after their uplift is just as unresolved.
I think it should be greatly reworked to live up to the great idea that's hiding behind!