The Poneans are a race of near-human beings was noted for its ability to alter its shape, Poneans are native to the planet Ponea. Descended from the base Zolander stock, Poneans are polymorphic within the boundaries of their own body mass, but could pass for virtually any other race with the proper concentration on the form. This ability was accidentally triggered when scientists tried to activate dormant skin genes in the Zolanders, in an effort to protect the race from increasing solar radiation. The genetic structure of the Zolander subjects was dramatically altered, and centuries of evolution produced the Ponean race. Depending on the skill of the individual Ponean, they might simply change their facial appearance or alter their entire body shape. The ability to alter one's shape allowed the Poneans to blend into enemy camps, where they could gather intelligence to commit crimes. Shape-changing took a good deal of patience and practice for the Poneans, although medical enhancement of their physiology could enhance their abilities. A given appearance couldn't be maintained for very long, and a dead Ponean always reverted back to its original appearance. Because of their shape-changing ability, Poneans were ostracized by their Zolander cousins, and there were several periods of civil war marking Zolan's history.