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The Phanaton of Dreadby happylarry
Entries on Jibaru describe the Phanaton as rising to sentience relatively recently – but don’t put any timescale on it. As far as I can see, that’s it for Canon. Then there is Geoff’s entry on the Isles of Steam on Pandius, which has the Phanaton arriving there in 900BC as Aranea slaves. The link between the two races seems to be that the Phanaton’s like eating spiders.
That’s not a lot to work from! I’m inclined to think of the Phanaton as native to the savage coast, and that those on Dread came as Aranea slaves at around the time they got to steam – c900BC. (I’ll work out what happened to the Aranea another time)
Anyway, one way or another the slaves escape, and go on to live in the jungle as marked on the X1 map.
The Phanaton live a comparatively peaceful existence - they need to be wary of Lizard Men, Rakasta and Neanderthals, all of which will eat them, but they have five villages in the treetops, stretching from that marked on the Isle of Dread map (which is the biggest and ‘capital’ at 200 Phanaton), down to the coast. They don’t go out of the jungle to the coast themselves. Total population is about 600.
Each village is laid out as per p11 of X1 (also p21 of X9 a helpful source). Government is tribal, and each village is independent, with a chief / war leader and a shaman. (note stats from X9)
There jungle has many ruins, and the Phanaton know the location of most / all of them – even some that would be almost impossible to find otherwise. They like collecting trinkets from the ruins to use in their mobiles (X1 p11) – but never go far into them.
The Phanaton can hide if they want to – there tree villages are all at least 50’ off the ground – but often their natural inquisitiveness gets the better of them, and they will trail an adventuring party, and if they behave themselves in the jungle, they will make contact.
PC’s wishing to make contact would be wise to bring appropriate trinkets or plants as gifts (see X1)
Motivations / adventure hooks:
At some point in my campaign, Bargle will probably discover and try to enslave the Phanaton
The Phanaton could function as sort of nature guardians – and might come to the PC’s for help if there was a major threat to the jungle.
At some point the Aranea might rediscover themselves and their former slaves.