- "The citizenry also charges you Xim, Son of Xer, with the unjustified decimation of countless peoples and worlds, including Vodran, Jurzuu, and Ko Vari."
"Of Vodran I have no recollection."
- ―Adjudicator Rexrax Shool and Xim the Despot, in the play Evocar
The Vodrans were a sentient species of egg-laying reptiles who evolved on the planet Vodran, in the Si'Klaata Cluster. The Vodrans were humanoid beings who stood no taller than a Human, but who exhibited several physiological differences from that species: monochromatic eyes; hard, leathery skin; underdeveloped facial muscles; and a ring of spikes around the face. While peaceful by nature, Vodrans made strong fighters. Most Vodrans considered the benefits of the collective before those of the individual, showing almost no individuality; the few freethinking Vodrans were considered pariahs and rogues by their fellows. One example, who lived during the Galactic Civil War, was the unbalanced Vodran Xenon Nnaksta, who became an officer in the Alliance to Restore the Republic.
Even before the establishment of the Galactic Republic, the Vodrans were slaves of the Hutts. The legendary Vodran warrior Kl'ieutu Mutela signed his whole species into servitude through the Treaty of Vontor, and the Hutts imposed their own culture upon the Vodrans and eradicated the reptilian species' independent civilization. The Vodrans believed that their partnership with the Hutts profited both sides, and as such the reptiles readily sacrificed their own lives in great numbers to preserve the ostentatious lifestyles led by their Hutt overlords, even though such wastrel-like activities were one aspect of Hutt culture that the Vodrans did not emulate.
The Hutts initially recruited the Vodrans—along with the neighboring Klatooinian and Nikto species—to fight the forces of the Human warlord Xim the Despot at the Third Battle of Vontor. After their success at Vontor, the three species were kept on retainer by the Hutts, commonly for use as enforcers or thugs. The Vodrans proved to be the most loyal slave species in the Hutts' retinue, and they never attempted any rebellion against their masters.
Biology and appearanceEdit
The Vodrans were a sentient species who came from the planet Vodran. They were two-legged, warm-blooded reptiles, humanoid in shape, with five-fingered hands that featured thick nails. Their bodies were covered with leathery skin that varied in color from olive green to brown. The skin was hard enough to offer some protection from physical damage.
The Vodran face featured a flat nose and two black eyes. Hard skin combined with underdeveloped muscles to restrict the range of emotions a Vodran could transmit through facial expressions. The face was ringed by horny protuberances that created a ridge of horns about the temples and on the chin.
Vodrans were oviparous, with young born from egg clutches; a typical clutch produced two or three children. Vodrans began their adolescence at twelve years of age and reached maturity at age seventeen. The average height of an adult was 1.75 meters to 1.80 meters, a size that afforded the beings with long legs that allowed them to run as fast as Humans. At forty-five, age began to take its toll on a Vodran and, at sixty-five, a Vodran was considered old. The average Vodran lifespan was eighty years; any Vodran who lived beyond that age was considered venerable.
Society and cultureEdit
Vodrans had little sense of self and thus showed little individual personality. They instead believed in "the value of many," seeing the whole species as a group. The physiological restrictions on their facial movements prompted them to convey wishes and emotions with only body language and vocal inflection. As they thought of the collective before themselves, they had trouble with advanced social conventions such as innuendo and etiquette.
Although the Vodrans established an independent culture based on settlements made up of huts and inhabited by dianoga hunters and spinefish fishers, after contact with an outside species, the Hutts, the Vodrans served the aliens as slaves for millennia with unswerving loyalty, a devotion that made them the most dedicated of the Hutts' servant species. While exceptions existed, the great majority of Vodrans were absolutely loyal to Hutt institutions, mostly represented as the kajidics—Hutt families that were in charge of criminal activities. Vodrans eschewed manifestations of individuality in their species, and they prioritized the well-being of their Hutt masters, no matter how many Vodrans had to die to protect their superiors' way of life. Hutts who settled on the planet Vodran exploited their hard-working reptilian servants to keep up opulent activities. Vodrans believed that their association with the Hutts had been fruitful for their people, and the individual who made it possible, the warrior Kl'ieutu Mutela, was revered by his species.
The Vodrans developed their own culture before making contact with the Hutts. However, as soon as the Hutts began to deal with Vodrans, the master species imposed their own culture and replaced indigenous folkways. A new mythology was created that suggested the Vodrans had only existed from the moment they began their service to the Hutts. While this was historically untrue, Vodrans who lived afterward believed it wholeheartedly, and the Vodrans' civilization, history, and art adapted to reflect that. The Hutts replaced the ancient language of the Vodrans with the Hutt tongue, Huttese, although from the time of the Galactic Republic onward, many Vodrans also learned to speak Galactic Basic Standard. The Hutts provided the Vodrans with advanced technology, including hyperdrives, but most Vodrans did not dare travel away from their homeworld without the blessing of their Hutt masters. Nevertheless, many Vodrans had a hard time mastering technology or scientific knowledge.
Like their Hutt overlords, Vodrans organized themselves into miniature kajidics, or Vodran clans. Each clan answered to a Hutt kajidic, and ultimately to the Hutt Clan of Ancients, which ruled over the Hutt species and its subordinates. However, one aspect of Hutt culture the Vodrans did not adopt was the Hutt fondness for lounging and leisure. Also unlike Hutts, Vodrans had two-part names, with examples including the names Meido Lycri, Kl'ietu Mutela, Lakren Plooru, and Saran Vydek.
Vodrans had a deep-rooted respect for authority figures, whether Hutt or otherwise. Individual Vodrans rarely tried to obtain personal power. They instead tried to serve Vodran social institutions and, through them, what they considered the greater good. Vodrans valued commitment and consensus, and they expected an individual to accept the ruling of the group, whether it be a Hutt kajidic, a state, a clan, or a union. A marginal minority of Vodrans showed enough individuality to reject their society and its principles, overcoming social conditioning and innate tendencies to obey authority. Such people tended to be loners and escaped from their Hutt masters. Other Vodrans considered such freethinkers to be pariahs, outcasts, and maniacs. While some Hutts cared little about losing the rogue servants, others turned to bounty hunters to track down such fugitives.
In general, Vodrans were naïve, peaceful, and straightforward. However, they commonly served as enforcers after developing combat skills that drew upon their aggressive potential. Other commonly learned skills that aided survival in wild, hostile environments because most Vodrans grew up on Vodran, where they faced the threat of huge predators that roamed the steamy jungles and swamps. A mild psychosis affected some Vodrans and made them fearless daredevils.
- "In fact, just about anyone who had regular dealings with the Hutts has lost credibility—the Rodians—except for the Jungle Clans—Whiphids, Klatoonians, Weequays, Vodrans, Iotrans, Nikto…"
- ―Lando Calrissian, on the results of the Hutts' double dealings during the Yuuzhan Vong War
The planet Vodran, full of steamy jungles and swamps, was also rich in scavengers and huge predators. Local species had to evolve quickly to avoid extinction in such a hostile environment. While the dianoga learned to change color and scavenge, a species of insect-eating reptiles that lived in the colossal trees instead developed intelligence as a survival tool; these primitive Vodrans learned to hunt and work together and to build settlements in the treetops. They managed to thrive in conditions that would have killed many other species. The Vodrans developed a society of fishers and dianoga hunters who used hanging trees to capture dianoga and spinefish from thatched huts over rivers.
Around 25,100 BBY, fire rained down from the skies of the planet Vodran, and entire huts were wiped out. Unable to counterattack, the Vodrans started rebuilding their settlements as they had been. Little did they know that their world had become a battleground in a war between the forces of the Hutts and those of a Human warlord named Xim the Despot, who were fighting over control of the Si'Klaata Cluster in which Vodran was located.
As the Vodrans rebuilt, emissaries approached them. Led by Dojundo the Hutt, the visitors used an old language convertor lexicon to communicate. They told of their master, a warrior called Kossak the Hutt. The strangers from afar tried to convince the Vodrans to join Kossak's armies. The superstitious Vodrans, in awe of the flaming, flying vehicles and advanced technology of the outsiders, viewed the Hutts as demi-gods, god-like demons, or even terrible deities. In fear, they bowed to the offworlders' will and swore to fight against the enemies of the Hutts in exchange for the secrets of the Hutts' "star-magic."
Kossak's other envoys recruited the Klatooinians from Klatooine and the Nikto from Kintan. Before the forces could join the war, the Hutts forged the Treaty of Vontor, a contract binding the three species of the Si'Klaata Cluster in eternal servitude, as permanently indentured servants, to the Hutts. The greatest Vodran warrior, Kl'ieutu Mutela, signed for his species. Xim, unaware of the Hutts' new allies, prepared his janissaries and his new legions of Guardian Corps of reportedly invincible laser-resistant war-robots. Xim intended to deploy all of his forces on Vontor for a last battle, hoping to overwhelm and defeat the Hutts once and for all.
Kossak gathered his fleet at Vontor and Xim sent his troops to the surface in massive landing barges. He did not expect to find one million Klatooinian, Nikto, and Vodran berserkers waiting for them on the surface, along with a number of Weequays, another species affiliated with the Hutts. While Xim was sending his warships against Kossak's forces, the Vodrans and their new companions destroyed most of Xim's war-robots and then wrecked Xim's orbital platforms by bombing them. Xim's fleet was destroyed in orbit except for a few ships that escaped with the last war-robots.
The Klatooinian skald Pupaku wrote a memorial of the battle. He provided an elegy for the warriors of the Si'Klaata Cluster, including those he characterized as Klatooinian, Nikto, Vodran, and Weequay brothers-in-arms. According to Pupaku, the warriors resorted to a spice-induced berserker rage to refrain from withdrawing when their robot nemeses approached. The warriors then took the robots to the underground of Vontor to dismantle them, one by one, even as the warriors themselves were killed. The soldiers' sacrifice turned the tide of the battle, the skald claimed: Xim's organic high-ranking officers understood that Xim could be defeated, and they mutinied. Nevertheless, in further generations, historians were unable to confirm Pupaku's claims.
The Third Battle of Vontor resulted in Xim's final defeat to the Hutts, and the Klatooinian, Nikto, and Vodran army proved themselves essential to that outcome. The Vodrans came to perceive the battle as a holy war that involved weird beings, new weapons, and magical items that were awarded to them.
Once Xim was defeated, the Hutts added the planet Vodran, along with the whole of the Si'Klaata Cluster, to their empire, which eventually came to be known as Hutt Space. The Vodrans started serving their new Hutt masters loyally, and the Hutts used the Vodrans, along with other indentured species, as enforcers, bodyguards, and lackeys to keep control over their domains. The Hutts eradicated Vodran culture and replaced it with beliefs more productive to the conquering species—including the false idea that the Vodrans existed only from the very moment they started serving the Hutts. Eventually, Hutt Space came into contact with a wider power, the Galactic Republic; the Hutts then used the Vodrans and their other slaves to build a criminal empire for themselves within the borders of the Republic. As far as the Vodrans were concerned, they regarded their association with the Hutts highly, and they started revering their hero Mutela for signing the Treaty of Vontor.
Circa 671 BBY, the thirteen-act theatrical play Evocar, written by Direus'pei the Hutt, was posthumously published by his Nikto scribe, Ro Vacca. The work presented Xim as a sympathetic character who prompted slaves to rebel against their Hutt masters. In the third act, Xim was charged with the murders of people of several worlds, including the planet Vodran, but Xim replied then that he did not recall that world at all. While the Hutts tried to restrict access to Evocar, it inspired several species, including the Evocii, Klatooinians, and Nikto, to rebel against them. The Vodrans, however, spurned the play and staged no major insurrections.
Through the years, Hutt inter-clan rivalries exploded commonly as brush-fire wars among the species serving the Hutts, including the Vodrans. Around the first years of the Galactic Empire, a violent urban uprising known as the Thruncon Insurrection destroyed several of Vodran's cities soon before the start of the Galactic Civil War.
During the time of the Galactic Empire, Vodrans were officially recognized as sentient beings, and thus gained the legal right to own and manage corporations. Later, after the Alliance to Restore the Republic started military activities against the Empire, the renegade Iyra sentientologist Tem Eliss traveled to Hutt Space to study the species indentured to the Hutts, including the Vodrans, to prove his hypothesis about millennia of genetic and cultural eugenics.
The Galactic Empire made an attempt to seize the planet Vodran and rule its native species, but the Vodrans opposed the takeover. As a consequence, much of the Vodran population was slaughtered, with only a small percentage surviving. When the anti-Imperial New Republic was created in 4 ABY, most Vodrans offered their support to it, although they clearly stated that the Vodrans' first allegiance was to the Hutts.
A later conflict known as the Yuuzhan Vong War prompted the Hutts to attempt to outsmart the Yuuzhan Vong species and play both sides of the war. The discovery of the Hutts' double-dealings damaged their reputation. Once the war was over, species associated with them, such as the Vodrans, lost prestige and credibility in the greater galaxy.
Vodrans in the galaxyEdit
Vodrans commonly dealt with the galaxy only through the Hutts: Vodrans rarely traveled without the authorization of their masters. Other species tended to see Vodrans as enforcers and thugs who inevitably represented the interests of the Hutts. Such a belief was not unfounded; for instance, in 4000 BBY, Vodrans served alongside Klatoonians, Nikto, and Weequays, as boarding troops and crew hands for the crime lord Bogga the Hutt. Grimorg, Bogga's Weequay chief enforcer, had the job of controlling them. Accordingly, some enemies of the Hutts targeted Vodrans as part of larger schemes to harass the reptiloids' masters. For example, the Nikto pirate Ga'p'tashi attacked Vodran-run vessels for such reasons during regime of the Galactic Empire.
Although Vodrans were rarely seen beyond the borders of Hutt Space, Hutts sometimes sold Vodran slaves to other criminals. Such transfers represented the only real opportunity for a Vodran to leave Hutt Space. Indeed, the Sith Lord Daiman employed Vodran soldiers to help defend his territory, which was known as the Daimanate. During a battle on the planet Gazzari, a Vodran soldier aided in Daiman's defenses against a rival territory known as the Odionate and a female Human Jedi named Kerra Holt. After being injured and maimed in the fighting, the Vodran was killed by Holt's lightsaber. The planet Vodran had no exports, although a native creature known as the dianoga spread throughout the galaxy as larvae for millennia, to the Vodrans' chagrin.
The infamous and individualistic Vodran Xenon Nnaksta, born in the Kudor province of Vodran, rejected his species' traditions and became first the manager and owner of the Greel Wood Logging Corporation, then a survival expert, and lastly a member of the Alliance to Restore the Republic. Promoted to Lieutenant, Nnaksta joined the undercover Eclipse Team and was still an officer during the days of the New Republic. Nnaksta was also a victim of a slight dementia, particularly noticeable because he drove recklessly and because he used a vibrosaw intended to fell trees as his weapon of choice.
Behind the scenesEdit
The planet Vodran has been part of Star Wars canon since the roleplaying guide Galaxy Guide 1: A New Hope was published in 1989 by West End Games for its Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game. "The Greel Wood Haven," an article written by C. Robert Carey and published in May 1995 as part of Star Wars Adventure Journal 6, introduced the Vodran species in relation to that world. The book establishes that a character from an earlier article, Xenon Nnaksta, was a Vodran from the planet Vodran. An illustration by David Day in the article marks the earliest illustration of the species. Another publication from the same year, Galaxy Guide 12: Aliens — Enemies and Allies, provides a full description of the Vodrans written by Pablo Hidalgo, as well as an image of them by Mike Vilardi.
Since their debut, the Vodrans have featured primarily in roleplaying material—the one major exception being Knight Errant, a novel by John Jackson Miller published in 2011. The roleplaying book Galaxy Guide 12 includes game rules for the species: Vodrans loyal to the Hutts receive a bonus to their willpower to resist betrayal of their masters, so players may role-play loyal Vodrans who enjoy the bonus or outcast Vodrans who do not. A later role-playing guide written for Wizards of the Coast's Star Wars Roleplaying Game and published in 2003, Ultimate Alien Anthology, adapts this rule: loyal Vodrans receive a loyalty bonus whenever someone attempts to blackmail or seduce them, but non-loyal ones instead get a bonus to their intelligence abilities. The two books disagree on the height of an adult Vodran: Galaxy Guide 12 and The Essential Guide to Alien Species make the average Vodran 1.80 meters tall, while Anthology reduces the number to 1.75 meters. The roleplaying supplement Pirates & Privateers, published in 1997, misspells the species' name Vodron.
Galaxy Guide 12 says that the Hutts made the Vodrans sign themselves into eternal servitude after their victory in the Third Battle of Vontor. However, the timeline in The Essential Guide to Alien Species, published in 2001, mentions the treaty being signed before the Hutts defeated Xim. 1999's The Essential Guide to Droids says that the Hutts and the Vodrans "made a pact" before the battle—although the treaty is not mentioned by name. 2005's The New Essential Chronology says that "two more battles followed [the Second and Third Battles of Vontor], but by that point, the Hutts had forged the Treaty of Vontor." It does not specify whether the treaty was signed before or after the battle. The 2010 novel Fate of the Jedi: Allies by Christie Golden details the 44 ABY attack on the Fountain of Ancients on the planet Klatooine that nullifies the Treaty of Vontor for at least the Klatooinians and the Nikto. However, the source makes no mention of the Vodrans, so it is unclear whether the treaty remains in place for them after the attack.
- Star Wars: The Old Republic (Codex entry)
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Shadow of Revan (Mentioned only)
- Knight Errant (First appearance)
- Scourge (Mentioned only)
- The New Jedi Order: The Unifying Force (Mentioned only)
- "The Greel Wood Haven"—Star Wars Adventure Journal 6 (First mentioned)
- Alliance Intelligence Reports
- Galaxy Guide 12: Aliens — Enemies and Allies
- The Essential Guide to Vehicles and Vessels
- Shadows of the Empire Sourcebook
- Secrets of the Sisar Run
- Pirates & Privateers (As "Vodron")
- Gundark's Fantastic Technology: Personal Gear (Indirect mention only)
- Alien Encounters
- Star Wars Encyclopedia ("Vodran")
- The Essential Guide to Droids
- The Essential Guide to Alien Species
- The University of Sanbra Guide to Intelligent Life: The Nikto"—Star Wars Gamer 6 "
- Ultimate Alien Anthology
- Geonosis and the Outer Rim Worlds
- The New Essential Chronology
- The New Essential Guide to Alien Species
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. II, III ("multiple entries")
- The Essential Atlas
- The Essential Guide to Warfare
- Star Wars: The Old Republic Encyclopedia
- Lords of Nal Hutta
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 1.21 1.22 1.23 1.24 1.25 1.26 1.27 1.28 1.29 1.30 1.31 1.32 1.33 1.34 1.35 1.36 1.37 1.38 1.39 1.40 1.41 1.42 1.43 1.44 1.45 Galaxy Guide 12: Aliens — Enemies and Allies
- ↑ 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 2.19 2.20 2.21 2.22 2.23 2.24 Ultimate Alien Anthology
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 "The Greel Wood Haven"—Star Wars Adventure Journal 6
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 The Essential Guide to Alien Species
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. III, p. 310 ("Vodran (planet)")
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 The Movie Trilogy Sourcebook
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 The Essential Atlas
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5
- ↑ Geonosis and the Outer Rim Worlds
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 The New Essential Chronology
- ↑ The New Essential Guide to Alien Species
- ↑ 12.0 12.1 12.2
- ↑ 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 The Essential Guide to Droids
- ↑ The Essential Guide to Warfare, p. 6
- ↑ 15.0 15.1 The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. III, p. 342 ("Xim")
- ↑ Secrets of the Sisar Run
- ↑ Shadows of the Empire Sourcebook
- ↑ The University of Sanbra Guide to Intelligent Life: The Nikto"—Star Wars Gamer 6 "
- ↑ The New Jedi Order: The Unifying Force
- ↑ Tales of the Jedi 3: The Saga of Nomi Sunrider, Part 1
- ↑ The Essential Guide to Vehicles and Vessels, p. 48
- ↑ 23.0 23.1 Pirates & Privateers, p. 97
- ↑ Alien Encounters
- ↑ 25.0 25.1 Knight Errant, Chapter 8
- ↑ Alliance Intelligence Reports
- ↑ 27.0 27.1 "Wanted by Cracken"—Star Wars Adventure Journal 4
- ↑ Fate of the Jedi: Allies, Chapter 24