The common sense of the galaxy and the toast of themselves, the Malev are a race of ingenious, industrious rodent-like demihumanoids. Squat, strong and solidly built, the Malev stand only 5'2 at the very tallest and have a mean weight of 200lbs. They aren't fat, they're big boned. Though their eyes have the bright spark of formidable intellect, the Malev look less like a fully evolved race and more like an animal that has learned to wear clothes- the closest equivalent to their appearance are badgers or wombats. They have stubby snouts, long, conical teeth, three strong-fingered hands with incredibly sharp claws, stubby tails and short legs with long, flat, nailed feet. They aren't covered in the typical dermis of other humanoids, but rather have a thick, leathery hide, covered with coarse, short, often mottled or calico fur.
The Malev are a hard working society, separated into broadly defined complimentary castes: the Soil caste, who are farmers, foresters, herbalists, agriculturalists, miners and other gatherers, and the Metal caste, who are mechanics, engineers, programmers and other scientists and technicians. These two castes are further divided between the Up people, who prefer to let their works tower towards the sky, and the Down people, who choose to spread themselves across the face of their worlds like grass across a fallow field. Eccentric? You bet, and that's all a part of their charm.
There's an old saying about the Malev, goes like this: “Never before has such a small creature ever stood quite so tall.” If there's a better way to sum these people up, it hasn't been written. The Malev are a proud race, incredibly so; so much that they believe that there's only two ways to do things in the universe: the wrong way, and the Malev way. And don't think for a moment that they're hesitant to point this out. Sure, it might be get a little obnoxious from time to time, but the Malev are a fairly wise race: they have long lives and a whole lot of knowledge, not to mention of love of simplicity in all things. So if a Malev gives you advice, it's probably a good idea to listen... even if it does require you to swallow your pride.