Image from Anders Sandberg

Primitive alien species, originating on Paula (YTS-5456111-003-II; Metasoft volume). Paulans are nautilus-like floating shelled creatures, equipped with extensive exoskeletal limbs and antennae. They have a pre-industrial culture in a single landlocked ocean, with most tools made of the local equivalent of wood and chemically-baked clay. Due to limited limb strength and their aquatic life, the development of fire and industrialization appears to be most unlikely.

When Paula was discovered in 5809 a brisk trade in Paulan artefacts began until Metasoft imposed cultural interaction restrictions. Since then only declared xenologists are allowed access to Paula. Most of Paulan culture remains unaware of the alien presence since most interactions are done through artificial constructs mimicking Paulans. However, stories about how Powers of Air and Fire stole mere vases in old times are still popular in the oral tradition.

The Paulan style of chemically baked vases, decorated by limb smears and implanted anemone-analogues is widely regarded as unique and aesthetically pleasing. Some of the best examples are in the famed Chahipho Collection.

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Development Notes
Text by Anders Sandberg

Initially published on 27 August 2001.

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