One thing that's been on my mind for a while, while reading the Jenu Templates like for instance...Hyena...They are often led by an 'Influential Matriarch' implying a bunch of Hyenas living under their Hyena Matriarch. And other species like Otters and Seagulls have cultures within their own specific Jenu and I just have to wonder...How common is it for a Vajrah to marry a Vajrah of a different Jenu, while it was stated all the three great races are species unto themselves, the information in these templates suggest there still is a tendency to stick with Janah of one's own type
This is a great question and one which will be elaborated upon in much greater detail in the pages of the up and coming World Guide. However since you have brought this question to the forum I will answer offer as much information as I can with out spoiling the surprises contained within the next book. In the game of Shard assume that the major races, which I will call the Great Races.... Paksin, Vajrah, and Sarpah all tend to mate with in the many different related sub- species contained within the Greater Race's classification to which they belong, those related sub-species I will call the Lesser Races for the sake of this conversation, that being said... There are varying degrees of intermingling depending upon the individual's preference, and the needs of the Houses or Lines they may serve. It is not uncommon to find felines seeking to mate with other felines of various sorts due to sociological and political reasons in an area such as Sustrum, which features felines as the most privileged group, like wise it might be equally common to find a feline married to another Vajrah in another nation which held different opinions. It is also easy to imagine in the nation of Rakbar that the Greater Race of Paksin would tend to marry other Paksin, and perhaps have individual preferences among the sub-species of the Greater Race of Paksin known as the Lesser Races of Paksin, or in another nation perhaps among the Greater Race of Vajrah those of the subspecies or Lesser Races might do likewise for instance rodents might tend to marry one another due to similarities in size and interests, but it should never be said that among the Great Races there is any favoritism towards any of the Lesser Races which are not the direct result of machinations and intrigues set into motion in the distant past by powerful houses and lines in an attempt to secure and protect the honor and wealth they have amassed. I feel it is safe to say that in most cases so long as the partner is also a member of a species able to procreate with one another without special dispensation that any prejudice encountered would be minimal in the eyes of the Mahist Faith and thus smiled upon by the great Mother and Father, and to that extent those who are granted special dispensation would also be seen as receiving a blessing from beyond the very edges of Heaven itself, any Janah who would begrudge such holy works is in my opinion not worthy of consideration and beneath those whom he or she may seek to judge based upon whom they have chosen to love.... Blessed are the Devah
Once again gonna have to wait until this Christmas for the Magic and Martial Arts Book...Feel like you can't truly play at all without all three books
That's really not true. I started a campaign back when all there was was the first book. Roleplaying is about creativity and imagination -- if there are gaps, it's ok to create what you need. It's called worldbuilding. No matter how in-depth the books are, they will never cover every single detail, and you can't stop a game because the players do something you didn't expect and it's not in the books. (This happens practically every session, by the way!) You simply make something up and move on. Even better, you ask the players to make something up and incorporate that into your campaign. It gives them a sense of ownership of the world, and the feeling that you're all creating the story together. If later you find out that it doesn't match what the books say, figure out why. If it's more common for two felines to interbreed in Sustrum, but for some reason a feline married, say, a warthog, figure out why! Did the feline travel outside of Sustrum and fall in love? Is the warthog actually a feline under some sort of transformation curse? Was there a prophecy that the two dared not go against? Did the feline do it to spite his/her noble parents, because he/she doesn't want to be part of the ruling class? There are always exceptions to every rule, and it can be really fun to explore those exceptions.
tl;dr: Yes, read the books and get the new one when you can. But don't let the lack of a book stop you from creating your own world and roleplaying the heck out of it.