Xenomorph book, obviously.
Well, is it really that obvious? If you listen to Andrew Gaska, who is the lore master of this game, he recently said in an interview (it’s on Youtube) that the various xenomorphs will be spread out in several supplements. So I guess there will not be any bestiary for this game - at least not in a traditional style where you see long lists of described creatures with stats. Personally, I think that kind of supplements often turn out to be quite boring. Just adding slightly different breeds of goblins or dragons doesn’t really bring anything new to the table. To me, a xenomorph bestiary with blue or green versions of the original creature would just risk to kill the mystery. However, I do think that the xenomorphs are the stars of this franchise. A xenomorph/Engineer sourcebook would probably sell. But I think it should be something more than just a traditional bestiary with stats and illustrations. PLEASE, can we avoid to make this a thread where we just say NO or YES to a xenomorph supplement? Thanks! And I’d be glad if you read my posts before writing a comment.
So lets go on. Below, you find my take on how to deal with the xenomorphs and the Engineers in a way that I don’t think would kill the mystery. It’s also in line with what Gaska said about the Engineers: there will never be detailed and definite description of them. And, obviously: I’ve based this on my own views of the Alien universe (and more specifically what the UPP really are). You might have other views and that’s just fine.
The Classified UPP Files
The UPP may have slightly more primitive technology than their capitalist rivals, but they have travelled further out in space than any other faction. Their explorers have seen many distant worlds that are yet unknown to the rest of mankind. A lot of their profound knowledge - bizarre specimens, unique alien artifacts, and other kinds of information - are kept in a large secret facility, hidden somewhere within the UPP territories. However, recently a spy from The Company was able to steal a quite substantial number of classified files from the UPP Archive.
This is sourcebook consists of those stolen files. They are not definite descriptions of various creatures or locations, it’s more a collection of secret documents, lab reports, star maps, and other documentation that UPP representatives have been able to gather over the past 100 years or so. Some of the information may even be false or just partly true.
I imagine a chapter about bizarre xenomorphs as the UPP see them. Some might still be kept in secret UPP locations, while others have only been observed on some remote planet. You could include some creatures from comic books or novels here, or you could add some new creatures. Personally, I think it’s important to be more creative than just making a known creature blue, glowing or bigger. Some creatures may even be so strange and alien that it’s hard to even grasp if it’s even a living thing or not. Some of the stuff can also be millions of years old, perhaps just found drifting in space...
I also imagine an entire chapter about the experiments the UPP have done with various xenomorph specimens (tissue, blood, bone, or just DNA or other genetic data). Those might actually be the real discovery, even more interesting than the creatures themselves. And of course, some of the UPP experiments have gone terribly wrong, perhaps in ways that could potententially be a threat to all of mankind. Or just in ways with very unpredictable and strange concequences.
A third chapter would describe remote star systems and locations that have been explored by UPP representatives over the years. It could be anything from Engineer ruins to strange eco systems and secret UPP colonies. Some of the information would come in the form of maps - or maybe fragments of maps. Among the maps, I imagine a huge UPP star map, not as reliable as the one in the basic rules, but five times bigger. It will give you a sense of the universe as the UPP elite scientists view it.
A fourth chapter would focus on secret technology - some of alien origin and some UPP produced but more or less experimental. There are probably also stuff that UPP scientists have created with parts or ideas from Engineer (or other alien) technology. Most of the stuff is really bizarre and very different from corporate technology. It might even be living technology - perhaps biomechanical or living in other, previously unknown ways. It might for example be a more or less divine AI with the ability to predict the distant future of the universe. Or a biomechanical super size solar panels. Or a very small black hole that is more or less possible to control.
A fifth chapter could be about the corporate world - as it’s seen from a UPP point of view. There could be reports from secret corporate labs, corporate spy organisations and android factories. A number of important corporate people are described, with their contacts and personal flaws. Some of the information might be false or just outdated.
In the sixth chapter, I imagine descriptions of planned UPP projects (a part of future five year plans?) that might soon become real. It could be military plans, scientific projects, new spy organisations, expeditions to remote star systems or plans for building a new, large scale Gulag style facility. Of course, all those plans are meant to be be used for scenarios or even campaigns.
(And yes, I know it’s slightly strange to answer a very short comment with a long essay, but hey, that’s me...)