(also sometimes known as Felinenoids)
Observe the common cat. Playful, mischievous and kind-hearted are all words that come to mind when thinking of an ordinary cat, are they not? Given that frame of reference, observe the Kats. The Kats can be considered the next step in feline evolution. As the wild cat are more advanced in strength, instinct, and cunning than the house cat, so are the Kats far more advanced in intelligence and cunning than their wilder feline cousins.
Kats carry many features over from their feline ancestry. They have the faces and ears of cats with all the fur and eye colors of cats, both domesticated and wild, depending on the individual Kat's ancestry. Kats retain the calm grace and beauty of cats, as well as the balance and dexterity.
The evolution of the Kats did bring with it some advantages. For instance, Kats gained the ability to think and reason in all measures like any of the other sentient species (i.e. Humans, Elves, Dwarves, etc.). The capacity for thought and emotion within Kats will be touched upon later. This newfound capacity for intelligent thought was of course tempered with the thought-patterns of the feline species, for no two sentient species shares the exact same thought processes in their formative stages.
In addition, Kats developed the ability to walk upon their hind legs. Once fully bipedal, they found that their front paws could be used for multiple purposes, including gripping and holding. The additional benefit of their cat-like claws turned out to be versatile. Not only could the claws be used as weapons when all else failed, but the claws could also be used for a variety of purposes: turning screws, slicing food, and many other tasks. Once bipedal, Kats discovered that the inherent capacity of a cat to move swiftly and silently was retained in their evolved form. Kats retained their long tails, which are considered objects of beauty to Kats. Kats have retained the cat-like instincts and senses, which are sharper than those of most other species.
This evolution did have some negative side effects though. For one thing, Kats aren't nearly as strong as say a lion or a panther (Or the Kats subspecies of Lionoids). Their feline musclepower has diminished somewhat in the course of their evolution. In addition, Kats appear to have lost much of the savage nature of the large cats, their primal instincts diminishing over time, much the same as the domesticated cats experienced. This is not to say that Kats are incapable of self-defense or even killing to protect themselves or those they love, far from it. It simply means that Kats lack the more gory instincts in regards to hunting and fighting (i.e. no ripping, shredding, mauling, etc.).
Kats are intelligent, fur covered, cat-like bipeds that range from 4'6" to 7' tall. They have well-developed hands with retractable claws. Color and fur markings or patterns are as for cats. Eyes can be of any color.
There are a large number of sub-races, with a great many crossbreeds. Sub-races are pure breeds with particular color and/or markings. A Mixed Race Kat sub-race will be listed amongst the sub-races even though they are not technically a separate sub-race.
Dwarfism, Giantism, Fat and Skinny are much more commonly found in the Kat Race than in other races (such as human race), perhaps as many as one in twenty have at least one of these traits.
Kats are most unusual in one respect; they have no culture of their own. Instead they adopted the highest culture around them (so as odds as it may sound, there are in effect Kat Samurai, Kat Vikings, Kat Knights, Kat Swashbucklers, Kat Horse Nomads, etc. It has been said of the Kat race that they are more human than many humans, be that as it may, Kates have the same range of emotions along with all the strengths and weaknesses of character that humans have been blessed and curses with.
In most cultures Kats are accepted as full members of that culture, having been around so long and adapting themselves so successfully that they are no longer considered "out siders" by the natives.
This is not to say that there are not Kat clans, tribes, nations or states, because there are and a few of which are totally independent. The vast majority of Kats faithfully serve whatever government or nation or king they happen to live under and have done so for as long as can be remembered. Such nations trust the Kats as much, if not more than any of their other subjects.
In the distant past, the Kats saw great opportunities to be had in the expanding Adarian Empire. They quickly joined and many of them gained positions as artists and craftsmen. It was soon discovered that many Kats had an uncanny ability to produce terrific works of art, and that they were excellent in the marketplace as traders and merchants. Some Kats chose to make their careers in diplomacy, and were discovered to be excellent at it.
During the Golden Age of Adare, the Kats thrived as a species, outgrowing their wild past and flourishing in the Adarian Empire. Many Kats gained important senior imperial positions and helped to expand the Adarian Empire and Culture. Many Kats still faithfully serve the Adarian Empire and no doubt many will continue to do so.
But times have changed. With the decline of the Empire, many of the Kats have taken much of the knowledge and skill learned from their Adarian mentors and used it to recover land that the Adarian Empire had abandoned. These Kats have established a strong and powerful Kat nation of their own. While normally friendly with the Adarian Empire, the Kat Kingdom is not allied with it and has in recent years clashed numerous times with the Adarians in both political and military conflicts.
A great many Adarian Kats never joined nor had any dealings with the Kat Kingdom and remain loyal to the Adarian Empire, especially the Mixed-Breeds Kats who are not treated very well in the Kat Kingdom. In recent years, a great many Kats have been exiled from the Kat Kingdom and have returned to the Adarian Empire.
It should be noted that like humans, Kats have no hesitation in fighting and killing other Kats if it comes down to it. They may try to talks things out, but if push comes to shove they are quick to use as much force as is needed to win.
All Kats spend a lot of time flirting, courting and romancing one another. It is quite common for more two or more Kats to compete for the object of their love. Often this is good natured rivalry without any hard feelings….there is always another fish in the sea, and as unhappy as a jilted Kat may be, soon as another is noticed, the pursuit begins again…
Most Kats love nothing better than to talk for hours with members of other races, Kats are good listeners and most other races consider Kats friendly and enjoyible company. Kats are just as likely to be with members of a mixed-race group as they are to be in a Kat only party.
Below you will find links to each of the Kat Sub-races, unless noted differently in the individual descriptions, Kats determine their height normally for their ST, weight is 5 lbs lighter than normal for their height.