Blue, purple, tan
|Number of Limbs||
|Behind the scenes|
- "There were three things that made the Andalites inherently formidable as enemies: their agile intelligence, their ability to shape thought-speak to either wide-band or private communication, and, of course, their faster-than-the-eye-can-see tails. Many a careless Yeerk has died from the blade of an Andalite tail. Beyond their impressive physical makeup there is the matter of Andalite technology. Specifically the morphing technology that allows them to absorb DNA from any animal source and then painlessly, and almost effortlessly, become that animal."
- ―Edriss 562
The Andalites are an advanced race of centaur-like aliens. They were the primary race fighting the Yeerks and are known throughout the galaxy for their advanced technology.
- "Andalites look like deer. If deer had blue-and-tan fur, humanoid arms, and scorpionlike tails tipped with wickedly sharp blades. Andalites also have two main eyes, on their face, and two on swiveling stalks that sprout from the top of their head. Beautiful and intelligent and cunning."
The head of an Andalite has a set of almond-shaped eyes, as well as a pair of stalk-eyes that endow them with 360-degree vision. It is implied that their main eyes are significantly larger than human eyes. They have a nose-like organ which features three vertical slits. Their sense of sight is similar to that of a human's, though their stalk eyes can see slightly further into both the ultraviolet and infrared spectrums. The other most notable feature of the face is the lack of a mouth. They eat by crushing grass under their hooves and absorbing the nutrients.They can even close their hooves whenever they want to stop the absorption of grass, and though their sense of taste is only weak and vestigial, it is still present. They communicate by way of telepathic communication called Thought-speak. It is known that Andalites usually have three hearts and two lungs. They also have a gland found in the back of their heads called a Tria gland, which keeps diesase-carrying organisms away from the rest of their body. Their normal body temperature is around 91.3°F/32.9°C.
They evolved as prey animals, but they developed a very formidable defense: a scythe-like blade on their long whip-like tails. The shorm, which literaly means Tail Blade, as known in the Andalite language, is smaller in the females, more like a scalpel and their tails are weaker as well. This bladed tail is long enough to reach well in front of the Andalite to strike deep blows in an opponent. During running, the tail is tucked down tightly against the back to improve speed. The tail is also an important symbol in Andalite culture, and is frequently referenced to in sayings and rituals. The tail is so important, an Andalite would rather die than live on without it.
- "The animals we evolved from were prey for millions of years. They lived in vast herds, always watched by hungry predators. This was before we developed our tail blades and we had no protection but speed."
- ―Aldrea's mother to Aldrea
Andalites are grazers, originally herd animals, and are accustomed to open plains. Claustrophobia is a deeply ingrained trait in Andalites, and they loathe enclosed spaces. At one point in their development, they began their transition into herd animals, and formed small groups, similar to a family. A single tribe formed at an unknown point in their history. Very primitive, they didn't have name for themselves. At one point, the Ellimist disguised as an Andalite helped them advance, even giving a name for their race, known as Andalite. At some point he left, but his influence is still strong, even though he is considered a fairy tale, and referred to as a race with some what malevolent qualities. Soon, families joined together, forming small communities. Then, as their society advanced, they grew closer and closer together, forming dense cities. Eventually, they decided that this wasn't a good idea, and nobody liked the proximity, so they broke the cities down and moved apart into small, family-based 'scoops' once again.
- Main Article: Andalite homeworld
The Andalite homeworld is simply called "the Andalite homeworld," and it is vaguely described in several books of the series. The number of stars is not specified, but it seems to be more than one as whenever an Andalite star is mentioned, it's in plural. It has been specified that the planet has four moons. The planet's sky is coloured red and gold. The Andalite homeworld is 82 light-years from Earth.
- Main Article: Andalite technology
Andalites are very technologically advanced, and boast of a vast knowledge of science. They have several notable developments, primarily Z-space technology. Z-space engines allow a ship to travel through Z-space, an entirely blank, void, white space, and exit again some distance away, shortening travel time immensely, and working around the limitations on faster-than-light space travel. Z-space transponders work similarly, allowing one to communicate through Z-space, similar to radio transmissions. Next, the ships themselves deserve note. First, there is the standard fighter ship, which has short stubby wings and a Shredder gun slung over the top, fashioned to mimic the raised Andalite tail, which is posed as a threat or challenge. Next, there are the vast Dome ships. These ships are the main transport ships for fighters and crew. The 'Dome' portion is an entire ecosphere, complete with atmosphere, grass, and water to sustain the Andalites on-board,so that the Andalites can carry their homeworld wherever they go. These ships can host many fighters, and generally only one Dome ship is called out for an entire battle, with the occasional need for two, and the rare necessity for three. All Andalite ships are equipped with Z-space flight capacity, and shredder guns. The shredders on a Dome ship are rumored to be capable of punching a hole clear through a moon. During Book #18: The Decision, Ax sees a pair of Andalite subs at the City of Worms on the planet Leera. He also recognizes destroyed Andalite skimmers on the Leeran battlefield on the main continent.
- Main Article: Morphing
- "As an Andalite, I have the power to morph. It's not something we're born with – it's a technology. But we invented it, and we are the only race in the galaxy that has it. Except for my human friends, that is. They can morph, too. But it's thanks to Andalite science. And thanks to the fact that my brother broke our own laws to give them this power."
The last technology of note, and a recent development at that, is the morphing power, obtained via the Escafil device, a small blue cube. Morph-capable beings are capable of 'acquiring' any animal, absorbing their DNA, and then at any time 'morph' that animal, physically transforming into that creature. The technology uses cascading cellular regeneration, combined with a variant on Z-space technology, in order to make the transformation. It typically takes about two minutes to morph, and if one stays in morph for more than two hours, they are stuck, becoming a nothlit. A nothlit can never return to their original form, or morph, again. While in morph, one is still capable of thought-speak. One also has the drawback/advantage of being confronted with the morphed creature's mind and instincts.
Aldrea-Iskillion-Falan acquired War-Prince Alloran-Semitur-Corrass in The Hork-Bajir Chronicles while Tobias acquired Aximili-Esgarrouth-Isthill in The Illusion. An African Cape Buffalo named "Buffa-Human" accidentally acquired Alloran-Semitur-Corrass in The Hidden. Gafinilan-Estrif-Valad also supposedly attempted to acquire an Andalite prince to overcome his genetic illness, only to find out that the leader of the Animorphs was a human.
In order to enter the quantum virus laboratory, Aldrea-Iskillion-Falan morphed into War-Prince Alloran-Semitur-Corrass in order to by-pass the guards. Decades later, Tobias acquired and morphed into his uncle, Aximili-Esgarrouth-Isthill, to make it seem like he was a red-tailed hawk demorphing. Tobias then began to use his Andalite form as an alternate battle morph. Buffa-Human, an African Cape Buffalo, also briefly morphed into Alloran.
The Andalites have many relations to many different species outside their planet. They are usually well-known for being 'good-guys', spreading enlightenment and aid wherever possible. However, an example that severely mars the reputation of the Andalites, and simultaneously jades many Andalite minds to their own culture as well as outside species, is Seerow's Kindness, an Andalite law that states no Andalite can ever reveal technology or secrets to other alien races. Prince Seerow was one of the first Andalites stationed on the world of a newly discovered species, the Yeerk homeworld. In their natural state, Yeerks are blind, defenseless slugs. They were capable, by some odd fluke of evolution, to enter into the brains of other species, interface, and control them. They had done so already with the pitifully weak species on their own world known as the Gedds. Even so, they were never really aware of anything beyond their small, homeworld, natural pools. Seerow felt sorry for them, and aided them. He taught them technology and showed them the stars. He even built them portable Kandronas, enabling them to leave the Kandrona-rich pools sustaining them.
In gratitude for his aid, the Yeerks attacked the Andalite outpost, and slaughtered the minimal guards (who had been specifically instructed by Seerow not to fire on Gedds), as they did not yet know to infest Andalites, stole the Andalite fighters on the ground, and escaped to space, but not before returning to the far side of the planet to stock up on their brother Yeerks. Then, with numerous pools full of Yeerks, they left to conquer the galaxy. Since then, the Andalites have been battling against the Yeerks, trying to prevent them from taking over more innocent worlds. They have already taken over numerous species, including the cannibalistic Taxxons, and their ironically herbivorous shock-troops, the Hork-Bajir. The problem was that there are simply not enough of these troops. So, the Yeerks are now after the humans, hoping to gain the sheer numbers to burst out in every direction and subdue numerous races, and eventually take the Andalite homeworld itself.
It is worth noting that the diminished numbers of the Yeerk's Hork-Bajir troops is due to the genocide of the Hork-Bajir by the Andalites. A Quantum Virus was developed for the sole purpose of eliminating all Hork-Bajir in order to weaken the Yeerks. Although this action was ratified by the Andalite Council, it is was kept hidden from the Andalite public as well as the Hork-Bajir resistance led by Aldrea-Iskillion-Falan and Dak Hamee. It is due to this disregard for 'lesser' species that Dak and the Hork-Bajir resistance distrust both Aldrea and the Andalite military.
Society and Culture
Andalite government, headed by the Electorate, functions on honor and respect, pride in culture as well as self. However, these noble characteristics are accompanied by others that may be surprisingly backwards to the eyes of supposedly inferior species: arrogance, inflexibility, sexism, and an atrocious attitude towards the disabled, whom they call vecols and treat as outcasts. As the chain of command works down, one eventually reaches the basic, personal leadership role: Prince. Every warrior is supposed to have a prince. Some princes work under a War-Prince. Princes can have more than one aristh, or cadet, under them, often many more, but every warrior is expected to report to one, and only one, prince.
Traditionally, males serve in the military, with females in the research sciences and technology. A few were unhappy with this arrangement, notably Aldrea-Iskillion-Falan, who despite being female, wanted to serve in the military to fight the Yeerks.
It is unknown if the mandate was related to the Andalites' troubled experience living in cities, but until very recently, Andalite couples were required by law to only have one child per couple. Elfangor states in the The Andalite Chronicles that "There were rumors soon they'd let families have three or four children, but I don't think it will come to that", and that the idea of having a little brother was a strange feeling. This piece of Andalite society may have been retconned, however, as Prince Seerow had two children before the Yeerk war in The Hork-Bajir Chronicles (which was published at a much later date than The Andalite Chronicles).
It is worth noting that in The Message, Ax says that he was trying to reach his cousins (also that he was taught by his cousins about humans). It is possible that Andalites have largely networked families, but it seems unlikely that they were all located in the fleet, close enough to contact. It is possible that Andalites refer to each other, or those they see as comrades, as "cousins."
An expression of surprise is briefly mentioned in The Andalite Chronicles that could possibly refer to a deity, "by all the bloody tails of Crangar", which is exclaimed by the captain of the StarSword when Elfangor unexpectedly (and unexplainably) appears on the bridge of an Andalite fighter.
Rituals are very important to the Andalites. They have small rituals, which mostly involve reciting prayer-like words, at certain events. There is a morning ritual, a ritual for children, a ritual for dying in battle, and a ritual for avenging one who has died.
<From the water that gave birth to us [dip right forehoof in water]. From the grass that feeds us [crush grass under same hoof]. For the freedom that unites us [spread arms wide]. We rise to the stars [look with all 4 eyes at rising sun]. Freedom is my only cause. Duty to the people, my only guide. Obedience to my prince, my only glory. The destruction of my enemies, my most solemn vow. I, [name], Andalite warrior/cadet, offer my life [assume stance and raise tail blade to throat].>
<From the rising of the sun to the setting, to its rising again, we place what is hard to endure with what is sweet to remember and find peace.>
Q - <Did he/she die well?>
A - <He/She died in the service of his/her people, defending freedom.>
Q - <And has his/her death been avenged?>
A - <No, Father/Mother.>
Q - <You are now the eldest son/daughter. The burden of revenge is on you. Do you know his/her killer?>
A - <Yes.>
Q - <And does his/her killer still live?>
A - <Yes.>
Q - <And do you, [name], take up the burden of avenging your brother/sister's death?>
A - <Yes.>
<I have made right everything that can be made right, I have learned everything that can be learned, I have sworn not to repeat my error, and now I claim forgiveness.>
<We welcome our hopes embodied, we welcome a new branch of the tree, we welcome...> (full words unknown)
<I am the servant of the People [bow head]. I am the servant of my prince [raise stalk eyes upward]. I am the servant of honor. My life is not my own, when the People have need of it. My life is given for the People, for my prince, and for my honor.>
- Captain Prince Asculan-Semitur-Langor
- Prince Caysath-Winwall-Esgarrouth
- Aldrea-Iskillion-Falan (acquired and morphed into Alloran-Semitur-Corrass; morph rendered unusable due to nothlit status)
- Tobias (acquired and morphed Aximili-Esgarrouth-Isthill)
- Buffa-Human (acquired and partially morphed into Alloran-Semitur-Corrass)
- ↑ The Stranger
- ↑ The Decision
- ↑ The Andalite Chronicles, page 198
- ↑ The Alien, page 156
- ↑ The Andalite Chronicles, page 282
- ↑ The Sickness
- ↑ The Alien, page 40
- ↑ The Hork-Bajir Chronicles, page 10
- ↑ The Andalite's Gift, chapter 15
- ↑ The Decision, page 84
- ↑ The Discovery, page 12
- ↑ The Alien, page 13
- ↑ The Other
- ↑ The Hork-Bajir Chronicles
- ↑ The Illusion
- ↑ The Prophecy
- ↑ The Hidden
- ↑ The Alien, pages 151-152