Welcome to Ten Forward Fridays, where a new playable species is presented for the Star Trek Adventures roleplaying game, filling in some gaps until official material can be released.
To start 2018, this blog is focusing on races from Star Trek: The Animated Series, the TV show of questionable cannon status from the ’70s. This week is the water breathing Aquans. If only because it will be nice to get an aquatic or amphibian race into the game.
Appearing in episode 1×13 The Ambergris Elements, Aquans were the formerly surface dwelling inhabitants of the planet Argo. As its continents sank due to seismic events, the inhabitants of the planet altered their biology to allow them to survive underwater. At the end of the episode, several Aquans were beginning to recolonize the surface. While advanced medically, Aquans lacked space travel. However, the Prime Directive was heavily ignored during that episode – a not uncommon occurrence during the Kirk years. While Captain Kirk spend the entire episode complaining about how he couldn’t command a starship from a flooded room, by the end of the episode we see Aquans being given a tour of the Enterprise‘s bridge in water-filled bubble helmets. Working on a starship seems quite possible for water breathers.
After having their natural development radically altered by Starfleet (by stabilizing quakes, raising sunken continents, and allowing them to return to the surface) it seems the Aquans might be granted special recovery status to help the planet and society rebuild. Perhaps because they had previously been advanced in the past (maybe they had and lost warp travel). If they recovered quickly enough, members of the species might potentially enroll in Starfleet Academy, either relying on hydration suits or advanced medicine to alter their bodies to an amphibious state.
Alternatively, there’s a number of other aquatic people in Star Trek, such as the Antedian from The Next Generation, the Xindi-Aquatics from Star Trek Enterprise, and the Chelon Rigelians. From the novels, there are the Selkie, as well as the the Lanatosians from the comics. This species could easily serve as the basis for any of these, or a new amphibious/ aquatic race.
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