A worthy band of scouts has traveled the galaxy to bring you information on over 30 different types of beings. Some of this knowledge was brought to you at great risk. Others were just fun to report about.
The entries herein have been divided into three categories. Hyposapient creatures are of animal intelligence, though sometimes they seem more clever than most humanoids. Homosapient beings exhibit features that would classify them as “sentient” by all but the most arrogant species. Hypersapient beings encompass those entities that are greater than the average sentient species. They’re not necessarily smarter, but they are much more powerful.
Each entry offers a typical or example member of the species in question. Of course, there’s great diversity in most life, so you might not necessarily encounter the exact member detailed here. Some creatures might be more or less powerful than what’s presented here, due to environmental factors, scientific or metaphysical experiments, age, diet, and so on. Furthermore, it’s possible that you might not meet most of these creatures; some galaxies are more populated than others.
Hyposapients vs. Sentient Beings
You’ll notice that game characteristics are given in one of two ways: with natural abilities or with Advantages, Disadvantages, and Special Abilities. This is to help you distinguish between those with animal instincts only (which are the ones with natural abilities) and everyone else.
Although clever, most animals are not as intelligent as people are. They don’t actively use skills, though they may have some to represent their unconscious application of them, such as willpower to resist being told what to do. Animals usually decide on the best course of action char will lead to their own survival, unless they are trained otherwise.
Many of the creatures here include a scale value. (Those that don’t have a scale value of zero.) Scale takes into account that large creatures are easier to hit but harder to injure, while small creatures are harder to hit but easier to injure.
Increased Attribute Special Ability
Some entities have a bonus in parentheses after attributes and Strength Damage values. This number in parentheses indicates the modifier that the creature receives from having the Increased Attribute Special Ability for the related characteristic.
The effects of the Reduce Attribute and the Hindrance: Movement Disadvantages have been figured into the characteristics of the creatures, so do not apply them again.
Body Points and Wounds
The Body Points for each entry were determined by multiplying the number in front of Strength’s “D” by 3, adding the pips, and adding 10.
All entries have been given three Wound levels (Stunned, Wounded, and Severely Wounded). Use the “Wound Levels” chart, dropping Dead to the Incapacitated level. Thus, if the creature takes nine or more points of damage or takes a fourth Wound level, it’s Dead.
In either case, adjust the numbers up for harder-to-harm creatures, or down for those that are easy to get rid of. Note that species packages follow the same rules for determining the number of Body Points or Wound levels as the normal character creation system for characters.
Those creatures that Game Masters would allow players to take as characters may have a minimum of 0D in Mechanical and Technical, a minimum of 1D in any other attribute (generally Knowledge), but they have no attribute maximum. (Note that a 0D in an attribute means that the creature may not rely on that attribute or any skill associated with it.) Use Disadvantages and Special Abilities as inspiration for the game mechanics of various natural abilities for the creature.
How to Use the Species Packages
Species packages may be used with any of the character creation systems, though they work easiest wit h the defined limits or creation points methods.
First decide on the species you want your character to be. Note the cost of that package.
Those using templates or the defined limits method need co reduce the number of skill dice their characters start with by the amount listed in the “Total defined limit cost” section. If the template does not have enough skill dice co pay for the package, then you have two options: (1) You can pick another species that has a lower cost. (2) You can select Disadvantages, the total ranks of which equal the package cost. (This is also a good way to get a few extra skill dice.)
Additionally, those creating characters with the defined limits method may spend attribute dice to buy a species package. The “Total defined limit cost” section notes how many attribute dice you must discard to get the package.
Those using the creation points method subtract the amount listed in the “Total creation point cost” section. Regardless of the method that you employ, you also can pick Disadvantages to offset some or all of the species package cost. Remember that one rank of a Disadvantage equals one skill die or one creation point.
Note that one species, the Mareen, has a character package that actually gives extra creation points or skill dice for choosing them. However, the base package doesn’t allow them any means of getting off their home world, so those extra points are usually spent immediately to give them the Equipment to do so.
Once you’ve paid for the package, continue making a character as normal.
You’ll notice that a few of the species packages do not follow the “maximum of 10 Disadvantage ranks” suggestion given in the rules. This is because every Disadvantage (as well as Advantage and Special Ability) has a reason for being there. Of course, to be a character of that species, the player may not choose to delete or ignore any part of the package (unless specified in the package). Players who want to design their own characters inspired by but not exactly like the packages are still limited by the Disadvantage maximum, unless the Game Master allows otherwise. Generally, players taking species packages may only include up to additional five ranks of Disadvantages or a number of ranks of Disadvantages equal to the cost of the package, whichever is greater. For particularly good role players whose Disadvantages and character concepts are more than simply words and numbers on a page, the Game Master may be more flexible with these rules.
Players may select only one species package for each character, though they may discuss with their Game Master ways to create hybrid packages.
Making Your Own Species Packages
The process of making your own species packages is both straightforward and challenging.
Step l: Describe the species. This system also includes entries related to the populace of the planet, which can be a useful place to start. Likewise, the “Travel and Combat” chapter contains a bounty of ideas for space-faring authorities and regulations.
Step 2: Once you have several key features for your new species, go through the “Character Options” chapter selecting Disadvantages, Advantages, and Special Abilities.
Step 3: Determine the species package cost. First, add together the ranks in the Disadvantages. Then, total the ranks of the Advantages and total point cost of the Special Abilities. Then, subtract the Disadvantages from the total of the Advantages and Special Abilities. If the final number is zero, the package has no cost. If the final number is more than zero than this is how many creation points or skill dice the package costs. If the number is less than zero, then this is how many extra creation points or skill dice the character starts with.
These packages consider Special Abilities as uncommon (and thus having each additional ranks cost the same as the first). This is recommended to prevent some abuse of the species packages. If the Game Master chooses to have common Special Abilities (where additional ranks cost a mere one point each), he should be certain that the Disadvantages come up frequently during adventures. (The Game Master also will need to re-figure any published package costs.)
Step 4: If desired, add attribute minimums or maximums recommended skills, recommended optional Disadvantages, Advantages, and Special Abilities, and any other desired notes. This is an optional step, but one that can force some uniformity in members. Remember that unless otherwise specified, all characters’ attributes must have at least 1D (0D for Extranormal attributes), and a maximum of 5D; attributes greater than this should be represented by the Increased Attribute Special Ability.