The different kinden that exist within the Shadows of the Apt series are directly at the core of the many conflicts that take place within the setting. They are numerous, some legendary, some extinct, and some with internal divisions.

All kinden claim a connection to an Ancestor Spirit (or Ideal Form, for the more scientifically minded) which has granted its Ancestor Art to their breed. This manifests in a number of ways:

  • Firstly, there are some innate physical advantages that some kinden have over others: things like size, speed, strength and endurance.
  • Secondly, anyone who spends time training themselves can achieve a level of empathic communication with the (giant) insects of their kinden.
  • Thirdly, there are Arts which are ubiquitous to some kinden, like Flies' wings or Scorpions' claws.
  • Next are those Arts that manifest only in some members of a kinden, either through necessity, desire or the vagaries of fate.
  • Finally, some kinden are disposed towards certain emotional responses: the Wasps' rage or Beetles' indifference.

A person's kinden is hereditary, and most people marry and produce offspring within their own kind. However, there are exceptions and these Halfbreeds are generally regarded as second or third class citizens at the best.

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