The Ch'rix are a large, bipedal, canid-like species from R'ach (HD85512b). The Ch'rix were the first intelligent species encountered by humanity following their invasion of Earth.
They are rated a pre-Singularity species, however they have achieved Type 1 status on the Kardashev scale.
Anatomy and Physiology
Ch'rix are of reptilian origin, however they have evolved many features that make them look more like Canidae. They have beige, scaly skin, and are covered with light, white, tan, or grey fur. Their large, lean appearance is most likely due to the gravity on their planet, which is about a two-thirds the gravity of that on Earth. While most of their body is covered in the light fur that is essential for reflecting their sun's rays during the day, and keeping them warm at night, thicker heavier scales cover their joints, ears, and brow-line. As they age, the hair will change to a grayish-silver color, while their scales become dull.
They have very sharp teeth, a long blue tongue, and speak in light, albeit gravely voices when speaking human languages as well as their native language, which is marked by a series of hisses, growls, howls, clicks, and coughs.
Standing at approximately 2.3 meters tall, but rarely weighing more than 200 pounds, they are a very lean species build around withstanding extreme heat. They can't see very far into the Ultraviolet spectrum due to their orange sun, leaving them seeing blues and some greens as Black. They do, however, see exceptionally well into the Infrared spectrum making it difficult to avoid them during the night.
Despite their imposing size, they are not very strong compared to humans, and moved quite slowly when they first arrived on Earth. They have six digits on each hand including two opposable thumbs opposite each other; while their feet have three large well developed toes and two smaller undeveloped ones on either side for balance.
Unlike humans, Ch'rix only have six lobes to their brain, and produce considerably more adrenalin and endorphins than most humans leaving them much more aggressive and prone to violence. Before they reach full maturity, they naturally release pheromones, which until puberty cannot be controlled and act as an indicator of mood. Once they reach maturity they gain a greater control over them, however they periodically produce mating pheromones which remain beyond their control.
R'ach is the name of the Ch'rix home world. It possesses two satellites: W'rach, and Nu'rach, and is the second planet of the To'c (HD85512) system. The gravity on the planet is approximately 0.68G while the atmosphere is 0.74 ATM. Surface temperature is between -15'C to 102'C. The estimated population of the planet was approximately 12.5 billion before the War Fleet left, it is generally assumed to be much less today, given the outcome of the planet's last great resource crises. Its habitat is described as being dominated by deserts and dry steps. The planet has no oceans, and barely any surface water for most of the year; most of its water is locked underground.
While an advanced species the Ch'rix have had at least 2 "Great Collapses," in their history, though it could easily be more given how much written historical information was lost in the first. From what they know, the history before the first Collapse greatly resembles that of human civilization. They had a great war that drove the development of aerospace and nuclear technologies, an philosophical enlightenment before that, and a number of religious wars, however unlike humans their species has had at least one Nuclear War, and was starting another great conflict through the use of asteroid bombardment when the War Fleet left.
Unlike humanity their development as a technological civilization was mired by their violent nature which led to a number of smaller wars throughout their history that hampered economic growth and therefore technological growth.
The Ch'rix at the time of invading Earth had several major advantages over human technology. They had mastered nuclear propulsion allowing for relativistic speeds, and have perfected many of the logistical nuances of spaceflight. Unlike humans, who discovered digital computing relatively early in their history, the Ch'rix didn't even conceive of the transistor until thirty years before leaving on the War Fleet, putting them only just ahead of humans in digital technology.
The Ch'rix are masters of kinetic energy weapons, and have perfected most known forms of delivery systems for them. They have mastered Hypersonic and sub-sonic flight through the use of Pulse Jets. This is the Ch'rix primary heavy weapons system, and gives them almost instant air support, by having several kill vehicles loiter above a battlefield to be called down at any time by the Ch'rix field commander. For small arms, the Ch'rix have only two weapons, a caseless rifle with an adjustable rate of fire (this made machine guns unnecessary), and a handgun with similar systems.
The Ch'rix did not have access to nuclear weapons during the invasion of Earth, due to their desire to keep most of the local population alive as a labor force.
The Ch'rix have never perfected fusion power, and rely almost exclusively on Nuclear Fission for energy. Their planet has long since been exhausted of fossil fuels, and nuclear technologies have existed for so long that, thanks to technological minaiturization, the smallest known Ch'rix reactor is the size of a coffee cup. They use hydrogen as a medium for propulsion (a typical Ch'rix vehicle has a small nuclear reactor providing heat to a hydrogen fueled combustion chamber.)
They have also never discovered room-temperature superconductivity (this is believed to be the primary reason for their inability to discover stable fusion energy).
The Ch'rix use Carbon nanotubes and/or graphene in almost every aspect of their society. These materials are as common to them as plastic and steel are for humans. The Ch'rix have had graphene longer than they have had digital computers, and upon the discovery of the latter technology, the former sped up its development rapidly.