Bengt Petter
Posts: 527
Joined: Sat 09 Apr 2011, 11:27

Xenomorphs that are not XX121

Tue 09 Jul 2019, 18:55

There are other creatures in space than just the brand aliens, also known as XX121. Some beings are mentioned in the canonized novels and short stories. What I miss are other xenomorphs that aren't just constantly aggressive predators. In the Lovecraft mythos, which is a thematic base for the original Alien movie, humans are naive and arrogant creatures who know very little about the life that has been around in space for thousands, maybe millions of years. This alien life exists under totally different conditions than human life. Often, humans can't really understand what they encounter. The XX121 creatures are just one many possible Lovecraftian examples. I would like to think that there are other, just as terrible and fascinating creatures to find out there. Or maybe they have already been found.   

At same time, adding more monsters to an RPG setting might, I think, be a path for the lazy game developer. Most of us have seen many really boring fantasy creatures. Adding new monsters or creatures should bring something truly new to the game. Of course, that's not easy, but I will give it a try with a few sketches included in this post. I have tried to work both in the Lovecraft tradition (bizarre, dangerous, and complex) and in the dystopian corporate world (all those beings might be profitable and dangerous resources with unknown risks). My creatures might be found somewhere in space or contained in a secret lab (or in some cases, in other locations). They are created to be used and/or developed by others. If you don't like a detail – change it. If you want more aggressive creatures that can be shot by marines – create them. I tried to do something else.

Ecosystem B78. An entire ecosystem has been found in a deep ocean of very salty water. Spherical, fishlike creatures live in a complex symbiosis with plantlike, long beings. The organisms glow in various colors and reproduce in monthly cycles. Sometimes the salty water is full of smaller, fishlike creatures that glow with a stronger light. This ecosystem is huge and spectacular to watch, but it also seem to affect other beings in medical ways. Human seem to be cured from various diseases. Maybe the entire system, or parts of it, possess some kind of healing intelligence, but it´s hard to establish a working communication with the complex system. It also seems like all beings within the system contains a very strong, paralyzing poison. Ecosystem B78 might be preserved in a large salt water aquarium, with slow and and unpredictable effects on surrounding beings. A sample might be found in the home of someone rich or powerful or in a lab. Or perhaps in the temple of a cult, worshipping this ecosystem.       

Xeno termites. It has been speculated that those small creatures, not bigger than a human finger nail, are the true and still living ancestors of the XX121 xenomorphs. They have a similar look, but only quite acid blood and no known ability to absorb DNA from other living beings. Instead they live in large nests, made of a black waxlike substance. They seem to eat only a certain kind of dead trees, found in their remote home world. When other beings approach them they start to buzz in a very loud and disturbing way. Just like their possible and more dangerous relatives XX121, they seem  to communicate through telepathy. If they get stressed, they can increase their number rapidly in a few hours. A xeno termite hive can consist of millions of small creatures. Their possible kinship to tXX121 have attracted a lot of interest. Still, these xenophobic termites have a strong stench, quite similar to rotten bananas. 

Specimen Andrew. He was found in a cryo chamber in a drifting, unregistrered space pod. Nobody understood where he came from. When he woke up, he was naked and seemed to be in constant panic, screaming in an unknown, partly singing language. When he was put in isolation to calm down, he killed and ate the people who tried to take care of him. Samples were taken from his body, and it soon became obvious that his DNA was constantly changing. Parts of it seem of human origin, but other parts seem totally alien. He continues to look human, but over the past years he has gone through several cycles of both aging and becoming younger. During some periods he has also been a woman. He (or she) seem to be able to eat and digest not only food, but also objects of metal and various polymeric materials. This seemingly only partly human creature is called Specimen Andrew and is attracting interest from both companies and various scientists. He might be kept in a lab or in a high security prison. Maybe he will find a way out, trying to grasp the human world in his (or her) own way. Maybe there are others like Specimen Andrew.   

Protein larvae 118. Since these tasty and extremely nutritious rich larvae where found a couple of years ago, they have been bred in large industrial facilities. All they need to thrive is a cheap fodder mix. It has also been discovered that their genetic structure is easy to manipulate; many variants with different textures and tastes have been developed. A lot of people, especially the working poor, eat these larvae on a daily basis. They seem like the best option to millions. Still, the long term effect of eating the larvae is unknown. There has been rumors that something in these small creatures can change the human metabolism in dramatic ways. Some variants seem to cause psychosis, while others seem extremely addictive. The companies breeding and selling the larvae are willing to do anything to protect their enormous source of income. Others want to sabotage the entire larvae industry.

The blue cigar. A mile long, blue entity was recently found drifting in space. Its shape reminded of a cigar, and seemed to be made of something fossilized that was once organic or perhaps biomecanical. After taking it to a protected facility, it was discovered that the entity was hollow and full of partly fossilized and partly living plantlike, maybe biomecanical beings. It is still unclear what this entity really is – a spaceship, a huge battery, a living thing, or a some kind of seed capsule from an eco system very far away. Lately, earlier fossilized parts seem to have regained life, developing blue, budlike things that move very slowly around the entity. At the same time, the temperature in and around the entity is fluctuating from very hot hours to shorter freezing intervalls. A large crew of xenobotanists and xenoarcheologist are working with this entity. But nobody seem to be able to grasp what it really is – or what it might become...   

I hope this thread can be a start of creating other creatures that can be interesting for the Alien setting. Or maybe just a spark to start discussing new creatures that are not XX121.   

NOTE TO READER: Previously, I have written quite much for Mutant: Year Zero, and Mutant: Genlab Alpha. Both games have been published by Free League. I'm not aiming to write any more printed RPG stuff, but I have several ideas for the Alien RPG that I might post here.     
User avatar
Posts: 11
Joined: Mon 08 Jul 2019, 11:38

Re: Xenomorphs that are not XX121

Wed 10 Jul 2019, 12:19

Also, let's not forget the Arcturan.
Frost: "Hey, I sure wouldn't mind getting me some more of that Arcturan poontang! Remember that time?"
Spunkmeyer: "Yeah Frost, except the one you had was MALE"
Frost: "It doesn't matter when it's Arcturian, baby!"

Moderator action: Changed the movie quote to the correct one and also so it is more clear that this is a phrase from a movie. Otherwise using bad words could be interpreted as offensive if the context isn't clear.
- Fenhorn