Archives of Nethys

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The Starfinder Roleplaying Game is about more than just meeting aliens—it’s also about playing alien characters. In Starfinder, the word “race” usually refers to an intelligent, selfaware species whose members can be considered characters rather than simple monsters. While not all races are appropriate for player characters, many of them are; any creature with a racial traits entry is a member of a potentially playable race, provided that your GM approves it.


Source Interstellar Species pg. 76
Hanakans shun technology, instead utilizing magic for their societal and personal needs. A symbiosis with an adaptive bacteria helped these raptor-like beings expand across their dangerously volcanic home planet and throughout their star system. Their peaceful society places great value on personal enrichment, individual accomplishment, and peaceful settlement of disagreements through debate, proxy champions, and subterfuge. They carry mystical stones, called ssenavars, that hold symbolic religious significance and are sometimes magical in their own right. Supported by their innate magical abilities, their instinctive curiosity and culture of non-violent competition make them savvy spacefarers and shrewd sorcerers.

Ability Modifiers +2 Con, +2 Cha, -2 Int
Hit Points 2

Size and Type

Hanakans are Small magical beasts.

Atmospheric Adaptation

Hanakans’ exposure to a variety of atmospheres has made them immune to inhaled poisons and acclimated to thin and thick atmospheres.

Hanakan Magic

Hanakans gain the following spell-like abilities. The caster level for these effects is equal to the hanakan’s character level.

1/day—wisp ally
At will—detect magic, token spell

Hanakan Senses

Hanakans have darkvision with a range of 60 feet and low-light vision.


A hanakan has a land speed of 40 feet and a climb speed of 20 feet.


Hanakans gain a +2 racial bonus to Medicine and Mysticism checks.

About the Hanakan

Physical Description

Hanakans are reptilian bipeds with lithe bodies, flexible necks, and whiplike tails that speak to their roots as opportunistic scavengers and hunters of small game. Each hanakan grows uniquely colored feathers on their arms, tails, and heads, which serve as both personal identifiers and as the vehicle for the species' complex and nuanced somatic language. These feathers also have a remarkably high ignition temperature, helping shield hanakans from embers on their volcanic home world.
Although perhaps once razor sharp, a modern hanakan's claws and talons have evolved to better manipulate tools and scrabble up cliffs, rather than to tear prey. Omnivorous by nature, hanakans magically operate farms where they produce a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, and nuts, while subterranean ranchers rear cattle-sized, herbivorous spiders called vanshas that serve as agile beasts of burden and a source of meat. The average hanakan stands 30 inches tall at the shoulder, measures 4 feet from nose to tail, and weighs around 25 pounds.
The adaptive symbiotic bacteria in hanakan lungs allows them to breathe in a broade range of environments, an advantage that not only allowed them to survive the volcanic surface of their home world Ssets'Akana, but also allowed early hanakan to explore their solar system via teleportation magic. Like hanakan and most other species found on Ssets'Akana, the symbiotic bacteria possess latent magical qualities. Though xenobiologists can successfully recreate the bacteria's adaptive properties, they've yet to detect any traces of magic in their lab-grown specimens, further deepening the unanswered question of what precisely the bacteria's magic does.
Hanakans generate magic of their own, independent of their microbiome. Hatchlings often flare with harmless sparks or uncontrollably change color before learning to control their powers, usually by the end of their first year. Even without further training, a typical hanakan can smell magical auras and perform minor arcane feats. Those who do develop their magic thrive thanks to their intuitive understanding of eldritch forces.

Home World

Hanakans originate from the volcanically volatile planet of Ssets'Akana, the second planet from the Ash'Akan system's sun. The tectonic activity stems partly from a vast connection to the Plane of Earth deep in the planet's core. The planet's extreme volcanic activities mean that elaborate magical protections are required for the handful of hanakan cities that dot the ashen landscape. Buildings of hardened light, flying globes, and other surreal magical architecture stand in stark contrast to the steaming rock and swirling ash of the environs.
These cities define themselves in part by the role a particular school of magic played there in hanakan history. This quality drives scholarship as well as a mostly friendly planetwide rivalry. Hsst'Hyssasha occupies a collapsed stratovolcano cone, and it was there that hanakan abjurers and evokers defeated ancient enemies made of electricity, likely seeding hanakan dislike for electricity and technology later. The twinned cities Hsst'Vaka and Hsst'Pliva are built within and atop a mesa respectively, serving as the intellectual seat of philosophy and civics. Hsst'Vaka's necromancers call upon ghosts as eyewitnesses and maintain records alongside skeletal archivists, while Hsst'Pliva's vibrant politics exist alongside its colleges of ethics and enchantments. Illusion thrives in Hsst'Panayka through art and displays of prowess, most famously during the Trials of Power combat tournament held there every four years. With its factories fueled by extraplanar fonts and conjured materials, Hsst'Kul provides finished goods across the Ash'Akan system. It also hosts the Starleap Sanctum, a teleportation-focused school whose best disciples can transport travelers between the stars for the right price. Having foreseen its future of being swallowed by the sea, the diviners of Hsst'Anan magically levitated their whole island, which now wanders the planet while serving as part spaceport, part cruise liner, and part taxi.
Smaller settlements survive beyond the magically protected zones. Though most shelter in narrow valleys or are built into lava tube networks, others turn to taboo means of preservation, such as infernal pacts, sinister rituals, or even technological solutions. Some just relocate every few centuries. After all, most of Ssets'Akana's volcanic hotspots wander slowly, and verdant forest might become a pyroclastic wasteland after a few generations. This process has buried countless metropolises in ash, sealing away lost magics that await archaeologists.
Dense jungles spring up in the wake of volcanic eruptions within days, and hanakan legends speak of immense plant-like guardians that accelerate the growth. These verdant pockets attract technologists using the forest to hide their forbidden artifice. Tales of these dangerous outcasts and magical monsters feature heavily in hanakan bedtime stories.

Society and Alignment

Ancient hanakans traveled in packs for mutual protection and group hunting strategies, with groups fracturing or uniting as needed to exploit new opportunities or evade danger. That pack mentality still influences modern society despite the many changes that followed the discovery of soulstones. Hanakans often form overlapping social circles of about 5 to 40 members—often including some blood relatives—that satiate their instinctive pack mentality. Fewer companions than this tend to trigger feelings of anxiety and vulnerability that most hanakans conceal with bravado. Vast packs, on the other hand, start becoming socially cumbersome, and these groups amicably split into smaller units.
These outlooks don't discourage hanakans from city living. Instead, metropolises just mean thousands of intersecting packs and networks that savvy hanakans can navigate to procure just about any service or favor. One hanakan could easily be part of a family-oriented pack, a guild-like pack of like- minded professionals, a pack of recreational pilots, and a pack of diehard magical sports fans, each with a complex hierarchy.
Religious hanakans often worship deities of learning, community, and magic, such as Eloritu, Talavet, or Yaraesa. Hylax has a small but passionate following due to hanakans' general preference for nonviolent conflict resolution. Beyond cultural outcasts and curious iconoclasts, Triune's worship is practically unknown.


Warfare is rare among hanakans, who much prefer resolving conflicts through minimally violent means. Most often, this resolution takes the form of wordplay, usually debate. While there are formal formats for debate, any form of informed argument will do. Hanakans are keenly appreciative of minute details, whether in magical theories, written works, or physical craftsmanship, and this attention features in Ssets'Akanan spoken conflicts—as the saying goes, “The distance between a life and a death is as narrow as a misspoken word.”
Sometimes, debating facts is too subtle. Either as sport or as a formal means of embarrassing someone in retaliation for a slight, many hanakans practice vrukulaa, a contest of ritualized boasting, insult, and dance. A participant extols their own virtues in front of a gathered crowd before twisting their brags into a verbal attack against their opponent, who must answer with virtues and attacks of their own. Truth and debate style impact the contest somewhat, but it's just as important to construct poetically exciting lines, flare one's feathers at key moments, perform complex dance steps while orating, and deliver everything with flair—often with one's pack punctuating wild claims with supportive cheers and jeers from the sidelines. A vrukulaa typically lasts only a few rounds before there's a clear victor, though the contest can extend indefinitely, with a few legendary bouts having gone for days.
Just as some cultures lionize the moment when two beings achieve perfect harmony and understanding of one another, hanakan society revels in pyh'huz, the rare moment when two evenly matched and opposing sides achieve a perfect stalemate—a revelation typically punctuated by both parties incoherently screeching, kicking up dust, and hopping about in a moment of shared emotional release, after which it's customary to end the contest as a draw. Despite being a departure from hanakans' usual eloquence, these uncommon, socially acceptable tantrums represent a mutual frustration with and respect between the competitors.


Magic doesn't just flow through hanakans' veins; it also suffuses their societies. Advanced technologies experienced little development with magic serving as the primary problem-solving tool in the hanakan arsenal—especially because an ancient, barely remembered enemy made of electricity nearly destroyed hanakans ages ago, instilling a distrust of electronics. Minor magical and hybrid devices are ubiquitous, activated either with a touch or by coaxing the magic to activate with a nudge of token spell, which hanakans can cast intuitively.
Many of the larger settlements on Ssets'Akan champion a particular type of magic, and individuals from these regions commonly adopt that arcane preference like a civilian might develop loyalty to a sports team. Schools of spellcasting spark debates, rivalries, and even formal competitions, but not outright conflict. In fact, the more that hanakans travel the galaxy and study other societies' magical traditions, the more these old school lines have blurred. That said, these divisions still debate and espouse key ethical concerns tied to their respective arts: whom can a necromancer reanimate, what is the minimum safe distance for bystanders when conjuring elementals, and so on. In particular, enchantment magic remains strictly overseen and taught, treated in many ways like a martial art reserved for self- defense. Magically controlling another being is deeply taboo, and conspiracy theories of enchanted politicians and the like periodically cause a stir.


he hanakan feather sign language is extremely nuanced, as both their naturally keen predator eyesight and their highly agile musculature grant them the ability to subtly convey a precise emotion or concept with a flick of their feathers. This linguistic advantage helped the species to become one of the most well-versed in practical thaumaturgical theory, and many other magicians use illusion magic to create a facsimile of the language for themselves, the better to take advantage of hanakan arcane insight. The range of emotion that the language can express also makes hanakan poetry particularly poignant, and hanakan satire especially effective at cutting an individual down to size.


According to hanakan legend, their ancestors discovered the first ssenavars (or soulstones) deep in a cave, where the walls sang to them, and these explorers sang back. Infused with elemental energies absorbed from deeper in the planet's core, these stones augmented hanakan magic and spurred a whirlwind of cultural development and urbanization. To commemorate this discovery, they constructed Hsst'Zaska, a holy city that still stands within the magically expanded and reinforced caverns. However, there's an ideological divide in interpreting this crucial moment: did the soulstones uplift these proto-hanakans, or did the ssenavars simply provide a valuable tool to an already intelligent species? Most hanakans favor the latter hypothesis for the way it preserves their agency as a society.
Whatever their ancient origin, naturally infused soulstones are rarely uncovered on Ssets'Akana. Instead, modern hanakans typically create their own or attune to an inherited ssenavar, mingling their spirit with the echoes of previous bearers. Some hanakan pass their soulstones to promising young family members or mentees on their passing, while others encourage their families to sell or donate their ssenavars in hopes of finding a potential soulmatch in the world. Bold or adventurous hanakan undertake grand quests to rediscover famous lost ssenavars, though many of these would-be heroes vanish to magical beasts or worse. However a hanakan receives a soulstone, there's no guarantee of a particular ssenavar responding favorably to that hanakan's bonding attempt. Imperfectly matched ssenavars simply don't respond. Rarely, a truly mismatched or arrogantly commandeered stone will lash out with energy to reprimand an unwanted partner.
Assuming the ssenavar is properly made or, for an inherited stone, properly matched, it shares its true name with its hanakan partner. This spiritually unites bearer and ssenavar into one, with the former contributing the “child soul” and the latter the “high soul” to comprise a dualistic being. This connection is faintly perceptible to the hanakan, allowing them to track their stone when within at least a few paces of it. Likewise, this connection can be detected and even deciphered by talented ssenavar'ishi, mystical lineage scholars who specialize in the study of soulstone energies. Other than to these few observers, a ssenavar typically doesn't detect as magical while near its hanakan partner, as the stone is an extension of the living being. However, when separated by a substantial distance, a soulstone develops a faint aura.
Losing one's ssenavar is culturally disastrous for a hanakan, effectively removing any authority or agency that the stoneless hanakan once had. Soulstone hunters thus receive a high place in hanakan society, whether helping forgetful hanakan find misplaced stones, braving dangerous areas to reclaim stones from the dead, or hunting soulstone-stealing criminal rings smuggling ssenavars offworld for the magical black market. Some soulstone hunters have been known to hunt a particular ssenavar for years, implacable and deadly in their magical pursuit.
Even after acquiring a ssenavar and adopting its true name, a hanakan typically continues using their eggname for most purposes. A true name has power, especially when woven into powerful rituals to affect the named target. Thus, sharing a true name is a matter of vulnerability, intimacy, and ultimate trust among hanakans.


Hanakan eggnames can be tricky for other species to properly pronounce, as the sibilant hisses, hard glottal sounds, and somatic components are difficult to master. Hanakan eggnames traditionally incorporate elements from multiple family names and serve as a wish and a prayer for the newborn hanakan to reflect aspects of their ancestors' spirits.

Sample Names

Some sample hanakan names include Ant'sswa, Bee'sstric, Cra'sstu, Glai'sstri, Hyss'ha, Isst'jaka, Jeess'hrana, Lass'traima, Nyss'traya, Plak'ssyni, Qui'sslyka, Sset'rini, Tak'ssainka, Vix'ssyna, Wyss'traika, Xiss'lyma, Yee'ssayna, and Zi'sshaka.

Vital Stats

Average Height 2 to 3 ft.
Average Weight 10 to 40 lbs.
Age of Maturity 5 years
Maximum Age 30+1d20 years years