Wookiees are a race of tree-dwelling humanoids. They are, on average, about 2 meters tall and can live for up to 600 years fairly easily. They are native to the planet Kashyyyk.
Although Wookiees were, on their own, a pre-spaceflight people, they adapt to technology incredibly rapidly and with great skill. The Empire first introduced the Wookiee people to spacecraft when they came to Kashyyyk to capture Wookiees to use as slaves. Today, many Wookiees are completely at home with high technology. Many are excellent mechanics. (Chewbacca, for instance, is at least as good at making repairs on the Falcon as his friend Han Solo is.) There are even plants that manufacture hyperdrives and shipboard computers on Kashyyyk now.
Wookiees are covered in a thick, lush fur which comes in many colors. Wookiees can be any shade of brown, black, blondish, reddish, two-toned, mottled, or "tipped", that is having a base color of fur and another on the ends of the strands.
Since they are entirely fur-covered, most Wookiees wear only a bandolir carrying "quarrels" (ammunition) for their weapons of choice, bowcasters. A bowcaster is a weapon that resembles a cross-bow. The springs in these weapons are so powerful that almost no one except a Wookiee can arm the weapon. They are so strong they can pierce almost any material with even a non-explosive quarrel.
Wookiees were often enslaved by the Empire because of their enormous strength. But in spite of this strength, and their fearsome appearance, they are actually very gentle with their friends, and remarkably even-tempered. However, when enraged, a Wookiee can be one of the most dangerous things in the galaxy. Sayings such as "let the Wookiee win", "It's not wise to upset a Wookiee" and "Wookiees have been known to pull people's arms off when they lose" have sprung up all over the galaxy. (Incidentally, Wookiees can and will do the latter when really furious.)
Wookiees culture is built around family ties and honor above all else. The Wookiee family unit is extended, and include friends as well as blood-relatives. Wookiees will also pledge life-debts under certain circmunstances. If someone saves the life of a Wookiee or another act of the same scale, the Wookiee will promise to protect and befriend that being and that being's family for the rest of its life. Chewbacca pledged one such debt to Han Solo, hero of the Rebellion and husband of Chief of State Leia Organa, when Solo rescued Chewbacca from Imperial slavery.
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