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.
Continuing with races from Star Trek: Enterprise, this week is the Andorian adjacent Aenar.
While an individual first appeared in the final scene of the preceding episode, the Aenar didn’t properly appear until episode 4×14 The Aenar . A subspecies of Andorians, the Aenar lived beneath a polar icecap in an isolated city. Almost more of an ethnicity given they could interbreed with Andorians, the Aenar possessed telepathic abilities. While a high percentage were born blind, they could “see” living things through their ESP. As they appeared only in the prequel series (and Andorians were seldom seen after TOS), the Aenar don’t reappear after their introductory story arc. However, The Animated Series, episode 1×02 Yesteryear featured the science officer Thelin, an Andorian who has an Aenar’s skin coloration. This was the result of an animation error , but it’s easy to justify this by saying he has Aenar ancestors, or the distinction between the ethnicities ceased to matter. According to the Typhon Pact novel Paths of Disharmony, the Aenar were extinct by the late 23rd century, likely as a result of marrying Andorians. Even in games set after this point, it would be easy to have an Andorian whose Aenar heritage is more pronounced, or whom focuses on the cultural values and mores of their Aenar heritage.
A blind Aenar could still largely function in Starfleet. One could be equipped with a VISOR or ocular implants allowing sight. And starships did have the option of tactile controls, which were present in 24th Century LCAR panels, and likely also viable in earlier eras. A helmsman or Operations officer would be impacted little by blindness.