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Okanta

The nomadic okanta have songs that trace their history back 800 years across the frozen world of Orbis Aurea. The okanta call the planet Amurtah, named when the first of the Harmarandh shamans heard the whispers of the spirits and began their people’s storytelling tradition. The okanta are a proud, powerful race of savants that have only just entered interplanetary society.

Physical Description: Believed to be descended from giants, the okanta have a powerful, towering stature that is a testament to their great strength. They typically stand between 7 and 8 feet tall, and while they are powerful in stature, the okanta are also surprisingly quick for creatures of their size.

While all okanta share the trait of being impressively sized, the features and builds of individual okanta vary wildly. Each okanta shares physical characteristics with a specific mammal, including both those native to Orbis Aurea and those not. This animalistic distinction is not shared across bloodlines; an okanta with boar features may have children that have bear and ram qualities. In spite of this variance, all okanta have impressive horns, irrespective of their other animal traits. Okanta horns, regardless of appearance, grow with age and are never shed. An okanta’s horns are a point of personal pride, often adorned with inlaid runes, scrimshaw, or other adornments often detailing pictographs that tell an okanta’s personal or familial history. Removal of an okanta’s horns is taboo in their society, even as a means of punishment, and perpetrators of such an act are viewed with contempt.

Society: Okantan society can be found in several regions across Orbis Aurea, the majority of which are scattered across the temperate band at the world’s equator and into the edges of the tundra to the north and south. However, okanta are a nomadic race and have formed a relationship with clans of giants (stone and taiga clans, primarily) in order to survive against the incursions of the frost giants who dwell in the sub polar and polar regions of their planet.

Though all okanta share a nomadic lifestyle with a long history of oral tradition and songs, each tribe holds different values. Tribes are led by shaman elders who practice varying degrees of animism unique to each tribe, though all okantan shamans trace their traditions back to the fabled city of Harmarandh that stood when the okanta were not a nomadic people. While each shaman may each interpret the whispers of the spirits in a different way, this unifying historic anchor ties a binding thread between all clans.

Okanta have revered aetherite as a sacred and spiritual material for as long as their society has recorded history. While aetherite is a highly toxic and dangerous substance, okanta long-ago discovered its supernatural properties, especially pertaining to the spirits of the dead and yet to be. Okantan shaman claim that aetherite is a window through which spirits of the dead can interact with the world. The okanta even discovered the morphic qualities of aetherite but did not deign to turn it into a power source. Okanta have no strong opposition to the utilization of aetherite as a power source, provided that it is done with respect towards the environment the aetherite is harvested from, and even this is a strictly practical outlook. Okanta became keenly aware of the folly that befell humanity during their aetherite rush, thanks to stories from the first human survivors to land on Orbis Aurea, and the okanta would not wish such a thing to happen again. As such, large tracts of surface-level aetherite on Orbis Aurea are strictly off-limits to mining operations, as these sites are used as holy places of pilgrimage for the okanta, where their shamans tap into the aetherite to commune with spiritual forces.

Strength is valued highly by all okanta, but not merely physical strength. Mental and spiritual strength are often more important than brute force and the okanta value well-rounded individuals more than exemplars of a singular aspect.

More so than even humans, okanta are a gregarious species that is quick to adept to change. The driving force behind this outlook is the okantan lifespan, which rarely extends beyond 25 years. Okanta are bold and passionate, making the most of their lives and striving to create a lasting memory that will be recorded in the traditional songs and chants of their people.

It is rare that okanta tribes ever war against each other. Disagreements are settled by duels of honor between individuals, and exile from one’s tribe is considered a fate worse than death. Exiled okanta were once consigned to an isolated life in the frozen wastes, but now these renegades can find a new future in the stars beyond their shrouded homeworld.

Relations: Having co-existed along with stone and taiga giants for generations, okanta understand the importance of forming alliances with others. Foreigners who do not openly display hostility are welcomed by most okanta tribes and treated with hospitality. Stories are always expected to be exchanged by those invited into okantan homes, and they are suspicious of those who are reserved and unwilling to share knowledge.

After giants, humans are the race the okanta are closest to, due to the arrival of humanity on Orbis Aurea multiple okantan generations ago. As relative newcomers to the interplanetary society, okanta are largely regarded as unknown quantities by other races, though they did choose to fight alongside humanity in the final days of the Century War.

Okanta share much in outlook with humanity, and while okanta are more willing to allow for another generation to finish the tasks set out by the first, they admire human ambition and aspiration. Ever since the first humans crash-landed on Orbis Aurea, okanta have taken on a role of surrogate family and often unconsciously extend this attitude to humans offworld. An okanta preening a human or offering constructive criticism the way one might to a family member is common. Okanta are a strongly familial people and oftentimes try to insinuate themselves into such structures without direct invitation.

Okanta view the erahthi and phalanx with very similar outlooks. Both races are ancient in their own ways (the erahthi by merit of age, the phalanx by merit of their immortal souls and bodies). Both fascinate the okanta and are the subject of many invasive—but usually well- meaning—questions regarding their society and lives. The erahthi are seen as wise keepers of knowledge, while phalanx are seen as physical vessels for aetherite and the spirits that communicate through it. Regarding the latter, okantan clans are divided on whether this is for good or ill. However, it is the infused that garner the most curiosity and superstition from okanta. The infused are, by their very nature, flush with the power of aetherite, but bear none of the wisdom of the spirits that speak through it. Okanta share the short lifespan of the infused, and thus try to share a hopeful outlook to the infused so as to alleviate the resentment they have toward their short lives. Okanta instead try to present it as an opportunity to live in the moment and make a mark while there is still time.

Faith: A form of shamanistic animism called Uutoh is the primary okantan faith. The first of the shamans were called the Harmarandh, and they were the first to hear whispers from aetherite in the land and the sky, which they later called the Song of the Stars. Curiously, the okanta do have a word for stars in their language, indicating that Orbis Aurea may not have always been shrouded by a cloud as it is today, and belies an older history of the okanta people than even they may be aware of.

Okanta who can hear the Song of Stars are vessels for spirits who grant them powers great enough to fight all those who threaten the okanta, including the frost giants. Under the guidance of such shamans, the wondrous metropolis of Haj-Harmarandh was built, the only permanent settlement ever constructed by okanta. Even after the fall of this great city, belief in the Song of the Stars continues on.

The Song of the Stars is, undeniably, a facet of the Score, and as such, okanta faith often overlaps with humanity when it comes to the importance of prophecy and prognostication. While Uutoh practitioners and Scorists may diverge on interpretations of specific movements within the Score, the means by which they perceive the Score is largely the same.

Among Uutoh practitioners, there is a growing desire to make contact with the zahajin of Kir-Sharaat to share ideas and philosophy. While few know of the true inner-workings of zahajin society, stories of their reliance and connection to aetherite is a tantalizing glimpse into another possible means of interpreting the Song of the Stars.

Adventurers: Wanderlust has always flowed through okanta veins, making them travelers who rarely settle down for long. Though raised in tight-knit tribes and communities, this short-lived race is restless and has always heard the call of something more in the wider world.

Though some okanta, especially their shamans, still cling stubbornly to the old ways, many of the younger generations are eager to let their nomadic lifestyle lead them beyond Orbis Aurea and into the stars. Young okanta are easily lured away by promise of adventure; troublemaking exiles often seek employment from off- worlders rather than facing a solitary existence in the unforgiving wilds of Orbis Aurea. The okantan ability to learn quickly and their fearsome appearances have made them popular as bodyguards, especially for exploration teams and military units.

Names: Okantan names are typically consonant-heavy and are followed by their clan name. Typical names include Arakhu, Tauth-el, Kithare, Lenshura, Yashka, and Zureen.

Racial Traits

Ability Adjustments: +2 Str, +2 Wis, –2 Dex. Okanta are powerfully built, but also flexible and varied in their thinking but not particularly agile.

Hit Points: 6

Size and Type: Okanta are Medium humanoids with the okanta subtype.

Low-Light Vision: Okanta can see in dim light as if it were normal light.

Adaptive Mimicry [Ex]: Once per day, an okanta can spend 1 hour observing a creature actively using any skill that the okanta has no ranks in. After this observation period, the okanta gains an insight bonus equal to one-half his level to checks with this skill. This effect lasts until the okanta dedicates time to studying a different skill in use, which then replaces her previous selection.

Fearless Surge [Ex]: When targeted with a fear effect, an okanta can use a reaction to spend a Resolve Point to gain a +4 racial bonus to save against it. The player must declare that they are using this ability before attempting a saving throw. If they succeed, they also gain a +2 bonus to Will saves until the beginning of their next turn. Once the okanta has used fearless surge, they cannot use it again until they take a 10-minute rest to regain Stamina Points.

Gore [Ex]: Okanta are always considered armed. They can deal 1d3 piercing damage with unarmed strikes using their horns, and the attack doesn’t count as archaic. Okanta increase the damage their horns inflict to 1d6 at 3rd level.

Powerful Build [Ex]: The physical stature of okanta offers them advantages in combat. They gain a +4 racial bonus to bull rush and reposition combat maneuvers.

Light Sensitivity [Ex]: Okanta are dazzled in areas of bright light.

Okanta Subtype Graft

This subtype is applied to okanta.

Traits: Creatures with this subtype gain low-light vision and fearless. If they also are of the okanta race, they gain the gore, and powerful build traits and the light sensitivity weakness. NPCs gain an additional good skill to represent the adaptive mimicry trait.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Alien Codex (Starfinder) © 2019, Legendary Games; Lead Designer: Jason Nelson. Authors: Anthony Adam, Kate Baker, John Bennet, Eytan Bernstein, Robert Brookes, Russ Brown, Duan Byrd, Paris Crenshaw, Jeff Dahl, Robyn Fields, Joel Flank, Matt Goodall, Robert J. Grady, Jim Groves, Steven T. Helt, Thurston Hillman, Tim Hitchcock, Nick Hite, Daniel Hunt, Mike Kimmel Marshall, Isabelle Lee, Jeff Lee, Lyz Liddell, Jason Nelson, Richard Pett, Tom Phillips, Jeff Provine, Alistair J. Rigg, Alex Riggs, Wendall Roy, Mike Shel, Neil Spicer, Todd Stewart, Russ Taylor, Rachel Ventura, Mike Welham, George Loki Williams, Scott Young.