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Feline Themed Races

Discussion in 'World Building' started by Deja II, Apr 11, 2020.

  1. Deja II

    Deja II New Member

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    When looking for a couple references for characters and races, I could not pin down the right key words to use. Therefore I have come to ask what feline themed races are there, in all the different fantasy worlds? Sentient humanoids is the defining line of race, for today. All species of cats are on the table, as well.
     
  2. Astaroth

    Astaroth New Member

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    Human Koala hybrid
     
  3. ThinkerX

    ThinkerX Myth Weaver

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    On my worlds, I have the 'Rachasa,' drawn very loosely from South Asian mythology. These (my version) are short, muscular humanoids covered with fur from 1/2 inch to 1 inch long (2-4 centimeters) that ranges from gold to brown to red to black in color. Facial features are very cat-like. Three fingers on each hand, with retractable claws several inches long (10 centimeters or so). Likewise, three toed feet, also equipped with retractable claws. While only chest high or so to a typical human, rachasa tend to be far stronger. They can leap straight up most of twenty feet (six meters) and can manage a standing broad jump of 40+ feet. With a running start they can leap a gorge 150+ feet in width (25 meters or more). Despite their strength, Rachasa are not built for endurance: they'd win against a human in a hundred meter dash, but probably lose a five kilometer marathon.

    One rachasa is considered to be a match for three of four normal human warriors - though the very best knights and fighters are a rachasa's near equal in combat. Only their small numbers and lack of disciplined organization keep them from being a major threat. One weakness: Rachasa do fear fire.

    Rachasa consider themselves to be hunters and warriors above all else. Commerce is principally barter; money holds no real interest, though some treat it as a sort of game - one they will not hesitate to walk away from if it becomes boring. A rachasa merchant is almost an oxymoron. Speakers (diplomats, language experts) and Rite Masters (shaman, healers) do practice magic, but this is always secondary. Magic usually focuses on weather, communication, and finding/luring prey. They are organized into nomadic 'septs' or 'packs' ranging from as few as three or four to well over fifty. Many septs will have members of other races with them - slaves who act as groomers and 'fire tenders' responsible for cooking and simple metalwork. Five to fifteen septs make up a clan or tribe, which will have a central encampment that might almost be taken for a town.

    On the one world, some of the gathering points became towns in fact, and Rachasa overlords used them as bases to annex large territories, creating nations of a sort. Said nations are almost always either loose confederations or brutal dictatorships. Both sorts incorporate large numbers of other races as artisans, petty bureaucrats, and other professions Rachasa cannot be bothered with.
     
  4. Queshire

    Queshire Auror

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    Heheh, take care looking this stuff up. You might find more than you reckon for.
    One thing to consider is just how animal-y you want them to be. While it's less important in a non-visual medium it'll probably affect how you think of them if they're just people with tails & cat ears vs guys with full lion heads and covered in fur vs basically houscats walking on their hind legs.
     
  5. Ned Marcus

    Ned Marcus Sage

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    C.J. Cherryh wrote five Chanur novels about an intelligent lion-like race of spacefarers. Sci-fi rather than fantasy though.
     
    Steerpike likes this.
  6. Orc Knight

    Orc Knight Auror

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    Tabaxi

    Because D&D always has something to run with.
     
  7. Insolent Lad

    Insolent Lad Inkling

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    My only intelligent cat-like beings so far have been the sphinxes. One appearance, a few references to them. I chose to make them essentially large cats with somewhat human-looking heads (but NOT human in any way). Of course, gods with an alternate cat persona are an whole other thing.
     
  8. Nirak

    Nirak Minstrel

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    Khajiit in Elder Scrolls world is one. D&D has the rakshasa, although more used as a monster. There's one in the Star Wars universe that I can't remember the name!
     
  9. Adela

    Adela Scribe

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    Have written cat people. Can't say I made them any one race, more a collection of different breeds. And, yes, watch what you look for when researching with this, especially on sites like Pinterest. Yeesh. :eek:
     
  10. ShadeZ

    ShadeZ Inkling

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    Queshire has a good point. I have a race that is almost completely human/elven in appearance except for cat eyes, cat fangs, and sharper nails. The part where their 'feline' side becomes more evident is in how they behave and act. They move very gracefully like a cat, they behave as if they are superior to most races, they tend to chase random small creatures, they enjoy climbing, they aren't very fond of baths or water, they are known to target an enemies throat, they tend to play games with their enemies a lot, they jump about 20ft up in the air if you sneak up on them and so on.
     
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  11. huscarl

    huscarl Dreamer

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    Hi All,
    Don't forget the Kzinti from Larry Niven. While sci-fi one, could adopt them or a facsimile into a fantasy world. I also think there is plenty of mythology/fables around cats as shapeshifters in human society. One could also introduce a lycanthropic version of felines.

    Semper Fidelis
    Eric
     
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  12. Patrick-Leigh

    Patrick-Leigh Sage

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    Right now, I only have a race called "Catfolk," but that's just a working name until I come up with something better. Basically, in my setting, there were nine original races. However, an event called the Divine War caused groups of people to be transformed in various ways. The gods were waging a direct war with each other, and I decided that when one god punches another god, weird stuff happens to the physical world. So, you'd have groups of Humans, Elves, Dwarves, Orcs, etc., who suddenly transformed into things like Satyrs, Minotaurs, Centaurs, and the like. My Catfolk were originally Elves who took on feline attributes when the clashing divine energies affected them. I'm still working out the design, but I'm thinking that they have fur all over their bodies, cat ears and tails, and possibly feline noses. Oh, and claws.

    Over time, the Catfolk have diverged into various subgroups, so you have some that are more like big cats (lions, tigers, jaguars, etc.,) and some that are more like domesticated cats. I think the ones that are more like big cats have stronger feline features while those that are more like domesticated cats have shifted a bit back toward looking like Elves.
     
  13. Saigonnus

    Saigonnus Auror

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    Why not just write stories about actual cats that happen to be magical or whatever? :p
     
  14. OberonLordofSylva

    OberonLordofSylva Troubadour

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    In my setting, the Duoverse, a powerful god experimented with using cats as messengers. The infusion of divine energies caused the cats to rapidly evolve, becoming identical to humans save for their ears, tails, eyes, and facial markings. This was the birth of the House of R'Chell, who now travel the Duoverse trying to find meaning in their existence after being abandoned by their creator.
     
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