The sinodytes are a young race, having appeared only shortly before the final blow that ended the age of gods. In fact, they have no racial memories of the gods whatsoever.

The sinodytes are an insect race. They spend half of their lives as larvae, standing upright on 2 to 4 of their 6 limbs, and using the rest as hands. They then enter a chrysalis and undergo a remarkable transformation, gaining tremendous size rapidly and emerging as an enormous and long lived beetle. 

Interestingly, while the larva form is truly sentient, as intelligent as any other race on Maeleff, it is not clear whether or not their beetle form actually retains anyof that intelligence.  The enormous armored beetles are docile unless provoked, and are used as transportation on land and sea, as well as machines of war when necessary, by the intelligent larvae.  Some believe that the beetles are truly animals, albeit clever ones. Some believe that they are just as smart, or even smarter, than their young, and communicate among themselves in some undetectable way, thinking their own slow, long and deep thoughts.


Sinodyte larva.

The larvae have found various ways to greatly extend their larval lives so as to avoid losing their capacity for thought, however many - even most - do not indulge in such things, considering their transformation into a beast of burden to be a natural part of their cycle, and their gift to their descendants, an important part of sinodyte society.

The sinodytes are descended from a predacious diving beetle, and still spend most of their lives on and in the water. Many make their livings as river traders and transport providers, building cabins and cargo containers on the backs of their enormous and fast swimming parents, who can be easily trained not to dive for food unless or until they are directed to do so. 

The larva have no distinct genders. They are thin, lanky, six limbed beings, with complex mouth parts, long twitching antennae, and chitin that varies from a pale brown or gray to a deep green, and they average about 5'6" tall. The adults are enormous beetles, up to 30 or more feet from head to tail, weighing several tons. They soon their chrysalis around enormous amounts of nutrient rich material, which they actually absorb and consume in the process of transforming. 


Adult Ancestor

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the sinodyte larva tend to be a philosophical people. There is a tremendous amount of writing and thought devoted to the transformation from larva to beetle.  They maintain a certain reverence for the beetle "ancestors", while at the same time exploiting their enormous physical power.  When a larva feels the urge to cocoon and transform, and ultimately agrees that it is time to do so, the entire process becomes wrapped in quiet ritual undertaken by the entire community, as the larva sets his affairs in order, and prepares for the process of transforming into an ancestor.

The Sinodyte larva have a near monopoly on long distance river trading and transportation on the southern continent, and engage in a fair bit of coastal trading as well. The Ancestors continue to grow for decades after their transformation. The largest are hundreds of years long, have semi-permanent structures built on their back to hold tremendous cargo holds and numerous passenger cabins. and are used as enormous and fairly quick-moving barges. Several of the larger merchant guilds have long term and exclusive transportation contracts with corporatiions formed by Sinodyte larva around families of old Ancestors.