- See also Rigelian (Vulcanoid).
V'geln was a harsh desert world with scarce available water and vegetation. The V'gelnians were adapted to these conditions, living a semi-nomadic lifestyle that allowed them to gather sufficient resources to survive, though they could survive on very limited supplies. They dwelled in stone habitats built or carved into natural formations for part of the year, and migrating at other times when the seasonal dust storms swept the planet.
V'gelnian society was as harsh as their environment: aloof, cold-blooded, vicious, primitive, and unforgiving. People unable to survive in the desert on their own were worse than a burden: they were unclean and unfit to live. They had no problems abandoning the weak and sickly to the elements.
They were a reclusive people as well, and contemptuous of outsiders – in part from clannishness, in part because few outsiders lived up to their desert survival standards. An unlucky, foolish traveler who asked for their aid was more likely to be robbed and murdered, than to receive their aid. It was recommended that only experienced contact teams should try to contact them.
They lived a bare, spartan lifestyle, their culture uncontaminated by outside influences. They typically wore dust-colored masks, hoods and robes, which both protected them from their environment and aided them in blending in with it.
- This severe lifestyle parallels some other deep-desert nomadic Vulcanoid cultures, such as the desert tribes of Obsidian or the te-Vikram Brotherhood of ancient Vulcan.
Despite centuries of study, the origin of the V'gelnians remained unknown into the late 23rd century. Their Vulcanoid appearance suggested that they were descendants of an ancient colony of Vulcans or Romulans, their culture dating back to those times, but their language did not appear related to either the Vulcan or the Romulan languages. The most likely other theory for their origin was transplantation to V'geln by the Preservers several thousand years ago, the Preserver V'Gelnian origins theory seems to make a lot of sense considering that the Preservers were known to visited the Rigel system about 83,000 BCE, and were mentioned by the Furry Rigellians as having traded here. Yet Another theory on the V'Gelnian origins is that the Furried Rigillians put these people in the Rigel System due to the fact that the Furried Rigellian civilization predates the Preservers by hundreds of thousands of years. (FASA RPG module: The Orions: Book of Common Knowledge)
- By the first version and later accounts, it seems likely that the V'gelnians settled on Rigel V after the Sundering period of Vulcan history, perhaps as a group of early Romulans or another early Vulcan culture who departed the planet Vulcan. The Vulcanoid Rigelians of Rigel V of the Last Unicorn Games/Decipher RPG settings have a similar history but a very different culture. A merger of these two would imply a shared origin.
Other sources provide conflicting versions of Rigel V's vulcanoid Rigelians. The TOS episode: "Journey to Babel" mentions experimental medical techniques used on Vulcan-like test subjects on Rigel V, but V'gelnian culture makes this highly unlikely. Thus they are likely not the canonical vulcanoid Rigelians, while other depictions have a much better claim. It might be assumed instead that V'gelnians are an offshoot of these Rigelians, living in the desert areas of their version of Rigel V.