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A Xenomorph May Be Involved

A Xenomorph May Be Involved

Star Frontiers remains one of my go-to science fiction RPGs. However, for true space opera gaming, I like there to be innumerable races to deal with instead of a handful. However, the problem then becomes that these races soon overpower the “core” races of the setting. So we were discussing how to make this work for our next Star Frontiers campaign now that the Rogue Trader game is almost over. We wanted something like the random species generation that created my Lobster-Cyborg Scientist in that old-time sci-fi RPG Space Patrol. In the end we’re looking at the choice of playing one of the core races, or rolling randomly to be one of the many “minor races” of the galaxy.

Game balance wise, the minor races are designed to be less powerful than the core races. Either coming out with lower stats, or other penalties to explain why they remain “minor” races instead of one of the major mover-and-shaker races. Almost all the ones created via this system will also be carbon-based, as the other options (hydrogen, hydrocarbon, silica, silicone, sulfur, ammonia) require extremes of temperature and environment that will make adventuring with the “major” races very problematic. Aquatic species are also assumed to have long ago adapted to survival outside of water, otherwise they become boring.

The funk tables (below) are somewhat incomplete. Either roll the appropriately-sized die (d10 mostly), or post suggested additions to the tables. Personally I prefer the additions to bring these up to d12 tables.

Something Funky ‘Bout That Alien! (d12)

1-5 – Common Funk!
6-8 – Uncommon Funk!
9-10 – Odd Funk!
11 – Psionic Funk!
12 – With Extra Funk! (roll on this table twice)

Common Funk! (d12)

1 – Extended visual range – can see in low-light conditions.
2 – Natural Weapons – 1d10 damage unarmed attack.
3 – Accelerated Metabolism – +10 RS, -5 Str / Sta
4 – Sluggish Metabolism – +5 Sta, -5 RS
5 – Wee – small stature gives -5 Str / Sta, +5 Dex / RS
6 – Big – large size gives +5 Str / Sta, -5 Dex / RS
7 – Light Sensitive – as the Yazirian trait.
8 – Light Protection – never suffers a penalty because of bright lights, flashes, etc
9 – Little Legs – has Dralasite movement rate
10 – Fast Movement – has Vrusk movment rate (or human movement if combined with Little Legs, above).
11 -
12 -

Uncommon Funk! (d12)

1 – Can regrow lost limbs in d5 days.
2 – Emotive colouration – colouration changes based on emotional state, doubling the chance of dralasite empathy functioning, and providing a -10 penalty on attempts to lie.
3 – Antennae – provide +10 Intuition when checking for surprise and similar situations.
4 – Stored Supplies – can survive twice as long without food or water.
5 – Low Pain Threshold – considered wounded once it has taken 10 or more damage.
6 – High Pain Threshold – considered wounded only when reduced to 10 or less Sta.
7 – Venomous – natural attacks inject a S(d5+1)/T(d5+1) poison.
8 – Spines – defensive quills deal 1d10 damage to anyone making an unarmed or natural weapon attack on the creature.
9 – Redundant Organs – +5 Sta
10 – 360 degree Vision
11 -
12 -

Odd Funk! (d12)

1 – Minor Shapeshifter – appearance only. Can imitate another of a very similar species with a 10% base chance (can be increased with experience).
2 – Major Shapeshifter – can appear as another species of similar physiology. Can imitate beings of similar physiology with a 10% base chance (can be increased with experience).
3 – Deadly Poison – natural attacks inject a S(d5+2)/T(d5+5) poison.
4 – Immunity – immune to doze grenades and sleep toxin needle darts.
5 – Keen Scent – can track by scent (10%, increases with experience) and can identify individuals by scent (double chance of tracking).
6 – Adrenal Control – 10% base chance, increases with experience. Can trigger a +10 increase to Str / Sta and Dex / RS for d10 minutes, then suffers a -10 penalty to those stats for 1 hour.
7 – Nauseating Funk – Once per hour the creature can make a nasty attack on a target within 10m – either a gas spray, or vomit, or something similar. Target must make a Sta check or be unable to act the next round.
8 – Quills – As spines (see Uncommon Funk), but the alien can also fire them as throwing knives, up to 5 per day.
9 – Echolocation – Effectively can see in the dark up to (Intuition) meters, but suffers +d10 damage from sonic weapons.
10 -
11 -
12 -

Psionic Funk! (d12)

1 – Basic Hivemind – can communicate with others of its kind within d10 km.
2 – Advanced Hivemind – as basic hivemind, but can share thoughts and experiences.
3 – Queen Hivemind –  as advanced hivemind, but the individual becomes a “drone” of the queen of the hive when linked. The character is probably either a scout or a rogue member of the hive.
4 – Telepathic Emitter – can communicate up to d10xd10 km away with others that it knows with a base 25% ability (can be increased with experience)
5 – Full Telepath – As a telepathic emitter, but can also “eavesdrop” telepathically within INT meters with a base 5% ability (can be increased with experience)
6 – Empathy – as the Dralasite ability.
7 – Combat Precognition – +10 RS
8 – True Memory – LOG check to recall anything in perfect detail.
9 -
10 -
11 -
12 -

Basic Format (d12)

1-3 – Mammal (-5 Str / Sta)
4-5 – Arthropod (-5 Int / Log)
6-7 – Reptile (-5 Per / Ldr)
9 – Amphibian (-5 Sta, +5 Dex, -5 Per / Ldr)
10 – Plant (+5 Sta, , -5 RS, -5 Per / Ldr)
11 – Mollusk (+5 Str/Sta, -5 Dex/RS, -5 Per/Ldr)
12 – Machine Life (either wait until I make tables for this, or roll again)

Manipulating Limbs (d12)

1 – 1 manipulating limb
2 – prehensile tail or trunk
3-8 – 2 manipulating limbs
9 – prehensile tail or trunk and 2 manipulating limbs
10-11 – 2 manipulating limbs, 2 partial manipulating limbs
12 –  All limbs are full manipulating limbs

Partial manipulating limbs can function as manipulating limbs at a -20 penalty. A result of 9 has the trunk or tail acting as a partial manipulating limb, whereas a result of 2 has the trunk or tail acting as a fully capable manipulating limb.

Overall Structure & Limbs (d12)

1 – Bilateral – 2 limbs
2-6 – Bilateral – 4 limbs
7 – Bilateral – d5x2 limbs
8 – Trilateral – 3 limbs
9 – Trilateral – 6 limbs
10 – Radial –  d5+3 limbs
11-12 – Asymmetric, d10 limbs

Limbs that are not “manipulating limbs” are motile limbs.

Body Covering (d12)

1-4 – Skin or skin-like covering
5 – Fine scales
6 – Heavy scales (-5 Dex / RS, +5 Sta)
7-8 – Fur
9 – Feathers
10 – Light chitin
11 – Heavy chitin (-5 Dex / RS, 3/4 damage from kinetic attacks)
12 – Very heavy chitin (-10 Dex / RS, +5 Sta, 1/2 damage from kinetic attacks)

Temperature Regulation (d12)

1 – Cold Blooded (-5 Dex / RS, +5 Sta)
2-4 – Cold Blooded
5 – Partial Temperature Regulation (-5 Sta)
6-12 – Warm Blooded

Reproductive Roles (d12)

1 – Asexual reproduction / Parthenogenesis
2 – Hermaphroditic reproduction
3-7 – Two sexes
8 – Two sexes, one is essentially non-sentient
9-10 – d5+1 sexes
12 – Roll twice – one generation uses method 1, the next uses method 2, switching each generation.

(We could do charts for gestation type and length – eggs, versus live young, etc – as well as reproductive strategies, but that’s getting into detail the player can make up)

Perhaps a few tables for the social structure of the alien society would also be in order here… Which would link to abilities like the Yazirian frenzy, Vrusk business sense and so on. But I’m burned out.

This is post #24 in the A to Z Challenge – X is for Xenomorph

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