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. 96
Pahtras are adapted to life on their home planet of Pulonis, a world wracked with magnetic storms and inhabited by titanic flora and wildlife. To rise to these challenges, pahtras took a different path from many galactic species: unconventional technology and ironclad traditions focused on combat. Their conquest by the vesk and subsequent exposure to the Pact Worlds has caused a social revolution of sorts, with younger pahtras rejecting the paths forced on them by pahtra elders. The legacy of the past still holds strong however, and the pahtras most people encounter are those soldiers who have access to the intense physical conditioning required to venture into a universe where everything weighs twice as much.

Ability Modifiers +2 Dex, +2 Cha, -2 Str
Hit Points 4

Size and Type

Pahtras are Medium humanoids with the pahtra subtype.

Pahtra Senses

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


An off-kilter pahtra doesn’t gain the flat-footed condition or take the normal penalty to attacks, and she can steady herself as a swift action instead of a move action.


Pahtras gain a +2 racial bonus to Acrobatics checks, Stealth checks, and checks with one Profession of their choice.


Pahtras gain a +2 racial bonus against charm and compulsion effects.

About the Pahtra

Physical Description

Pahtras raised on Pulonis tend to be tall and lanky with wiry musculature that reads as too thin to many other species. A typical Pulonis pahtra stands six to seven feet tall and weighs 150 pounds. Their bodies and limbs are elongated, and many of their bones aren't entirely fused, causing their joints to be looser than those of most creatures that reside on higher gravity worlds. This aspect of their anatomy gives them an extended range of motion and incredible flexibility but sharply limits how much force they can exert, as a pahtra who strains the limits of their strength finds their body distorting more readily than their environment does. As pahtras have expanded into the universe however, they've discovered their physiology is remarkably adaptable—a pahtra raised on a world with heavier gravity grows to a similar height but develops the stockier musculature of a large predatory cat.
Like many felines, pahtra have meat-ripping teeth framed by prominent canines as well as retractable claws on their hands and feet. While useful for eating and climbing, these features make for unimpressive weapons. However, young pahtras sometimes train to deliver lethal blows, often losing some of their natural flexibility as they toughen their bodies.
Pahtras are covered in a layer of short fur that ranges from tawny brown to gray with almost every individual possessing a unique, dark pattern of irregular blotches, stripes, and spots. Eyes can be almost any color of the visible spectrum, though hazel is the most common. As with many nocturnal predators, their eyes are highly sensitive to light, allowing them to see in dim and dark conditions. A pahtra's pupil can contract into a slit to avoid this feature blinding them in bright light.
Pahtras' most extraordinary sense isn't consistent across the species. Each pahtra has a cluster of subdermal sensory organs arrayed across their face, and the organs' primary function varies by the individual with several common types. Harmonic sensitivity is the most common function, allowing the pahtra to feel sound and frequencies—often contributing to pahtras' perfect pitch and natural affinity for rhythm and harmony. In others, the organs anchor long whiskers that can register the presence of nearby creatures. While these whiskers are useful survival tools in the wilderness, their hypersensitivity tends to make them uncomfortable in high winds and crowded urban environments. A third group's facial organs have specialized olfactory functions that sense when a familiar creature smells off, indicating an infection or illness. Finally, some pahtras are especially sensitive to magic, not just sensing local auras but also orienting in relation to trace magical energies in Pulonis's powerful magnetosphere.
Most pahtras exhibit one of these functions strongly, and their facial organs have reduced sensitivity to one or more additional stimuli. For example, many pahtras can't sense ambient magic but do exhibit a response known as “the twitch” when exposed to enchantments, likening it to a jolt of sudden suspicion that helps them shake off mind-affecting effects. The exact sensory array seems to develop randomly in infancy regardless of the parents' senses. The prevailing theory is that pahtras evolved to have a communal sensory array, with at least one member of each group able to sense an important stimulus and alert others to its presence.

Home World

Despite its considerable distance from its sun, Pulonis—better known to the Veskarium as Vesk-6—is a hot and humid jungle world with no ice or polar caps to speak of. Invasive planetary drilling from the vesk revealed this climate to be the result of Pulonis's core being modified in the ancient past—it's likely that without this mysterious alteration, the planet would've been a frozen rock incapable of supporting complex life. Whether as a result of these same modifications or due to the planet's natural properties, Pulonis also has an incredibly strong magnetosphere, which renders most advanced technology completely useless on its surface.
Due to its small size, Pulonis has a weak gravitational pull, allowing both its geography and biological life-forms to grow to titanic extremes. Mountain ranges jut up in precipitous spires that would be impossible on other worlds, while flora and fauna alike dwarf most species in the same way a vesk towers over a hamster. While many visitors struggle with an environment where they feel so small, pahtras often delight in the challenges their world presents, believing the greatest obstacles present the greatest opportunity for glory. Though the low gravity of Pulonis means many of its towering fauna are weaker than they appear, the technology-destroying storms and fields of the planet are more than enough to even the scales.
In theory, pahtra nation-states control most of the planet with ultimate authority resting with the Veskarium. In practice, the pahtra concept of control is far looser than that of their vesk overlords; pahtras keep their cities and living areas safe, otherwise letting the vast wilderness manage itself. Travel between pahtra nations tends to be either very slow or accomplished via risky yet swift flying ships powered by magnetic sails.
For all its verdant splendor, Pulonis bears a nearly lifeless scar known as the Holy Lands. During its conquest of the planet, the Veskarium grew impatient dealing with pahtra guerilla defenders and bombarded the region from orbit, vitrifying the landscape. This indiscriminate, unstoppable show of force finally elicited a surrender, and the surrounding jungles have shown no signs of reclaiming the blasted area. It now serves as a sacred memorial to honor the pahtras who perished there.
Although pahtras are the dominant sapient life-form on Pulonis, they aren't alone in their intelligence. The mysterious ichthyoid oozes known as hymothoas also lurk on the planet's surface, and they demonstrate hostility toward the Veskarium. Hymothoas have the disturbing ability to parasitize living creatures, slowly devouring and replacing the functions of internal organs, until at last they control the victim's brain functions. Should the host body fail, the hymothoa can readily flee the dying husk and seek new prey. Pahtras seem to instinctively consider hymothoas enemies and feel the urge to kill them on sight; hymothoas are less visibly belligerent in turn but are more than happy to devour a pahtra in pursuit of their goals.

Society and Alignment

On Pulonis, pahtra culture is nearly as competitive as the life-or-death struggles of the natural world around it. Pahtras are well- versed in cooperating to survive their extreme surroundings, but youths and seasoned veterans alike strive to excel in their chosen fields and distinguish themselves from their many peers. Pahtra nation-states recreate this rivalry on a grand scale, displaying their latest breakthroughs or triumphs in a relentless drive for prestige. Most pahtras consider this friendly opposition to bring out the best in each other, though the process burns out or outright kills numerous pahtras each year as they strive for recognition. Not every pahtra starts off on even footing either; tradition dictates that the patterns of a pahtra's fur determine their character and potential, as interpreted by a pahtra mystic shortly after birth. Pahtra youths have begun to rebel against this predestination, even choosing to leave the planet just to escape the expectations thrust on them by others. Many pahtras still consider their ancestral traditions of the highest importance. They're a subjugated people, no matter what autonomy their despots have granted them, and they're keenly aware the vesk would prefer that pahtra culture quietly erode until it becomes indistinguishable from the rest of the Veskarium. Most pahtras also firmly believe it was their traditional warrior training that allowed them to challenge the technologically superior invasion forces of the vesk, a challenge that earned pahtras the Veskarium's respect even in defeat. As such, many on Pulonis are determined not to see these traditions taken from them, and it's little surprise that some see the rebellion of pahtra youths as an existential threat. Due to the magnetic fields and storms of Pulonis, pahtras weren't a technologically advanced species before their conquest. With their exposure to a wider galaxy, they've been making up for lost time. Though they make use of shielded electronics imported from the wider Veskarium, they rightfully consider such gear to be one system failure away from disaster—instead, pahtra nation-states prefer to focus on advanced ceramics, bioengineering, and chemistry that are more reliable on their home world. Mysticism remains highly important on Pulonis as well since even the vagaries of magic prove more reliable than a metal piton or a simple radio. The majority of pahtras are asexual. They often form loving and life- long relationships with a partner or small group, though they tend to balk at any bond that infringes on their individuality. A relatively small population of child- bearing couples sustain the pahtra population with litters of six to eight kits at a time. Unsurprisingly, communal child-rearing is a necessity in most pahtra societies. Both biological parents and adults closely involved in children's rearing are treated as parents, and although sexual attraction and reproduction are key to sustaining the population, a pahtra's reproductive involvement earns enough polite respect to feel valued without feeling like an obligation to attain social status. Another consequence of this child rearing culture is most pahtra schools and training grounds are populated by several large sibling cohorts—a social dynamic that puts even more pressure on each pahtra to differentiate themselves from their relatives while still ensuring their family's overall performance overshadows competing sibling clusters.


A pahtra's youth tends to be a sheltered one, kept safe in cities where nothing can snatch up an unwary child as a snack. Infants begin life very small and with little fur. At two to six months of age, pahtra kits are taken to a mystic to receive guidance on their lives based on interpretations of their fur patterns. Their early years tend to be idyllic ones, though their playtime activities are guided by the dictates of their supposedly predestined aptitude and social roles; however, all youths are encouraged to climb, experiment with music, and engage in childish play fights, as these activities are central concepts to pahtra culture. Once a pahtra turns seven, they're expected to begin their official education. Private tutoring is considered adequate pedagogy for the least promising youths. Those children who show the greatest potential are expected to attend a school where even if they receive less individual instruction, they'll be exposed to peers who can serve as constant competition.


Almost every pahtra, both on Pulonis and off, has a deep love of music. It's rare to find a pahtra who doesn't know the basics of at least one instrument, and vocal lessons are taught alongside battle tactics and history lessons in school. Hired musicians liven the soundscapes of pahtra cities, and pahtra composers garner as much respect as the most prominent scientists, leaders, and generals. Concerts are some of Pulonis's biggest social events, and pahtras will make a treacherous journey through the wilderness for thousands of miles around to witness the electric “singing coils” of the nation-state of Trenarez.

War Games

At 15 years of age, every pahtra is expected to participate in a coming-of-age ceremony, where they're sent into the wilderness to compete against both their peers and the environment. These ancient rites of battle and survival last several weeks and claim several lives every year, but a pahtra's performance in the ceremony often shapes their social and career prospects for the near future. The trials typically involve races, collecting rare hunting trophies, and survival in harsh environments with little equipment—all while skirmishing with other youths who compete for the same resources and accolades.
The fierce competition begins well before the rite, with a young pahtra's exploits influencing not only where they'll perform their trials, but also alongside whom. The more prestigious the arena, the greater the challenges and the greater the prospect of glory. The most sought-after site is known as the Proving Grounds, a tract of wilderness wracked with dramatic tides, magnetic storms, and occasional earthquakes. Each pahtra nation-state is permitted to send 12 youths to the Proving Grounds each year, and Pulonis's most influential citizens (and even a few from beyond) pay very close attention to these rites and their top performers.
Given their combat and survival skills, it's little surprise that the military is one of the most respected professions in pahtra culture—even if it involves joining the Veskarium's armed forces. Military service also represents one of the few ways for pahtras to reliably leave the planet, as the rigorous exercise and conditioning needed to adapt to higher gravity worlds is difficult to obtain through other means. For their part, vesk soldiers respect their pahtra comrades, though they often ideologically clash over the former's demands for conformity and the latter's need for individuality/


Traditional pahtra names consist of elements that are auspicious to a pahtra's potential in life, as determined by a pahtra mystic in during the individual's youth. These elements differ depending on nation-state, history, and lineage, and they vary enough that a pahtra's parents can pick and choose what best appeals to them as well as add their own input to the name. Those pahtras who reject tradition have been known to change their names or name their children with elements that the youths have no “right” to bear, a trend that older pahtras find somewhat offensive.

Sample Names

Some sample pahtra names include Cahnex, Fetenekku, Hafsoumei, Ifset, Jeviish, Khieper, Lealorn, Mahdran, Onharaf, Rishhmani, Sanna, Tendris, Voyenrel, and Zamahaii.

Vital Stats

Average Height 6-7 ft.
Average Weight 140–190 lbs.
Age of Maturity 14 years
Maximum Age 80+3d10 years

Alternate Ability Adjustments

Source Near Space pg. 133
While pahtras’ reputation as swift and charismatic warriors is well earned, exceptions have always been common in pahtra culture. These pahtras are often assigned to specific social roles based on their perceived potential, though younger pahtras are beginning to resist this practice. The following pahtras have these listed ability score adjustments instead of the standard adjustments of +2 Dexterity, +2 Charisma, −2 Strength.


Source Near Space pg. 133
Pahtras raised on planets with standard gravity often develop the powerful musculature of born predators and are sometimes nicknamed hunter-killers due to their lethal efficiency. A hunter-killer pahtra’s ability adjustment is +2 Strength.


Source Near Space pg. 133
The pahtra rebels known as the Krreyvash have turned to extreme methods in their fight against the Veskarium. The Krreyvash subject themselves to experimental bio-engineering that grants them exceptional strength and reflexes but ravages their bodies. A Krreyvash pahtra’s ability adjustments are +2 Strength, +2 Dexterity, –2 Constitution.

Wise One

Source Near Space pg. 133
Certain pahtras show unusual insight or physical features that signify them as likely to receive wisdom from supernatural forces, according to pahtra tradition. These wise ones are given rigorous training regimes by elders and other wise ones in order to become strong in both body and mind. A wise one pahtra’s ability adjustments are +2 Constitution, +2 Wisdom, −2 Strength.

Alternate Racial Traits

Source Near Space pg. 133
While most pahtras have the standard pahtra racial traits detailed in Alien Archive 2, specific individuals dedicate their lives into developing uncommon abilities, represented by the following alternate racial traits.


Source Near Space pg. 133
Some pahtras rely less on their vision, instead detecting their environment via whiskers that are sensitive to air currents and vibrations. A pahtra with this alternate racial trait has blindsense (vibration) with a range of 30 feet and low-light vision.
This replaces pahtra senses.

Natural Weapons

Source Near Space pg. 133
Pahtras can develop especially deadly claws that rake and rend with startling effectiveness. A pahtra with this alternate racial trait has natural weapons that function like those of vesk, except the pahtra’s natural weapons deal slashing damage.
This replaces talented.

Parasite Sense

Source Near Space pg. 133
Some pahtras are sensitive to odors that indicate the presence of invasive bodies. A pahtra with this alternate racial trait gains a +2 bonus to checks to detect, treat, or remove diseases and parasites that infest another creature. As a full action, the pahtra can try to determine if an adjacent creature it can smell is diseased with a DC 30 Perception check. The DC of this check is reduced by 5 for each step along the disease track the creature is.
This replaces nimble.