Saturday, May 28, 2016

Species Write-Up's Going Forward

I've been thinking about the species I've been posting lately and I'm going to make a few changes. First off, I'm not going to detail religion, mutations, cyberware, and psionics unless one or more of those areas are integral to the species background. Instead, I'm going to add more about cultural ideas, specific relations with other species, and other information along those lines.

On another note, I've cleaned up some of the rather embarrassingly glaring spelling and grammatical errors. I'm sure there are a lot more that still require attention, but I think I got the worst offenders. What can I say, I don't always do a thorough proof once I get one wrapped up.

Founders of the Concord: Cereans in Mythic Space


Peace, serenity, intelligence, and wisdom are all words that come to mind when Cereans are brought up. Cereans are quick to react, but when you have two brains constantly processing information, it’s easy to react quickly while still thinking things through.
Cereans are considered to be among the most sophisticated and cultured people in the Galactic Concord. Their art, music, plays, novels, and architecture are second to none and have made their homeworld, Cerea, a popular destination spot for travelers from all over the Concord. They are also well known for their universities and training facilities for psions.
Cereans abhor violence, but they knew that the only true option was to fight the Illithids. While the invasion would likely stall, and they would be able to flee to the far corners of the galaxy, there would come a time that the Illithids would come. They felt it better to stand among their allies and fight rather than cower away and await the inevitable. They knew that they were a target. From the first encounter with Illithids, Cereans knew that they were seen as desirable cattle for the aliens. What better food could there be than a species with two brains? Many Cereans go to bed at night and have nightmares of Illithids hiding in the shadows waiting to feast.
Physical Description/Biology: Cereans are humanoid standing roughing the same size and shape as humans. Their heads are elongated to house their binary brains. The shape of their skulls has caused some humans to nickname them “Coneheads” after an ancient TV skit, which is rather offensive to most Cereans as one can imagine. Cereans can grow hair, but only of the tops and back of their heads and many Cereans, both male and female, keep their heads shaved or wore their hair in a simple topknot. Their hair is typically light in color, but darker shades are not unheard of and it had a very light, wispy look to it.
Personality: Cereans are well known for being cool, calm, and collected even in high-stress situations. Most credit their dual brains for being able to see things and angles that many others simply can’t. They are well respected for their ability to not give in to aggression and to find alternatives to violence. It has made their culture one to be admired and respected in the Concord.
Cereans are largely pacifists. They believe that all life in the universe is connected and see violence and war as the ultimate breakdown of these connections. Their insistence on finding non-violent solutions can be frustrating at times to others that see the only negotiating with some is at the end of a weapon. It doesn’t help that Cereans can come off as a bit condescending and arrogant to other species, especially to those that have a history of strife.
Homeworld: Cereans hail from Cerea, an idyllic world in the system of the Same name. Cerea, surprisingly survived the Illithid Invasion largely unscathed even though the Illithids were known to be actively searching for the system. To this day, it is unknown if the Cereans had a hand in somehow hiding their home or they simply got amazingly lucky.
Religion: The Cerean philosophy of logic, non-violence, and respect are as close as one will find to religion among Cereans. Their belief that all life in the universe is connected and only by strengthening bonds will the galaxy become truly safe has taken on pseudo-religious connotations among species that admire the Cerean way of thinking.
Mutations: Cereans have a lower rate of mutation compared to humans and other species. Whether this is because their genetic code is less prone to mutation, or Cereans don’t make it a habit of entering into areas with mutagenic stimuli has yet to be conclusively determined.
Cybernetics: Cereans can be implanted with cybernetics, though they have a harder time integrating brain-based cyberwear.
Psionics: Cereans have a higher rate of psionically-capable people in each generation than the Concord norm. There is no social stigma to having psionic powers or potential in Cereans society, and their education regimens are lauded throughout the Concord and being the gold standard for training young psions to control and develop their abilities.

Cerean Species Traits (Savage Worlds)
·         Smart: Due to their binary brains, Cereans start with a d6 in their Smarts.
·         Intuitive: When dealt a card for Initiative, Cereans may choose to draw a second card. They must keep the second card even if it’s worse than their first card.
·        Pacifist: Cereans do all they can to avoid violence, but they will defend themselves when they need to. They start play with the Pacifist (minor) hindrance.

Cerean Species Traits (Rogue Space)
Archetypes: Technicians only, and add +1 to either Empathy or Science. 
Dual Brains: Cereans start play with a +1 to Science.
Pacifist: A Cerean's starting Fighting score cannot be higher than one after character creation. 
Psionics: Cereans can be Espers. Although Empath is the most frequent power, all powers are open to them.  

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Founders of the Concord: Centauri in Mythic Space

Some members of the Concord fully embrace the ideals of co-existence and mutual protection and aid, others, like the Centauri, see the Concord as a necessary evil they have grown to be too reliant upon. They would love to return to the days of glory when the very utterance of “the Centauri Republic” would leave their enemies shaking in fear, and others awestruck. Even though it appears that those days are behind them, if they ever truly existed in the first place, Centauri still dream of, and scheme for, their return.
            The Centauri Republic was well established as a major power in the Alpha Quadrant when humanity first started to travel the stars. Still, the cracks were already starting to show in the foundation of the Republic’s power. By the time of the Illithid Invasion, the Republic had just lost several systems in the Narn Revolution and there were on their third Emperor in six standard years. One having been assassinated and the other died young due to genetic disorders. When the Illithids started tearing their way through the Alpha Quadrant, the Empire was reeling, looking for allies among those they had abused, harassed and even dismissed in the past.
            Allowing the Centauri Republic to enter into the talks of an alliance nearly doomed the Concord before it even began. The Narn Regime still harbored great hatred for their former occupiers and refused to enter into any alliance in which the Centauri were a part. There were attempts on the ambassadors lives on both sides, fist fights between the retinues in the Presidium, to say nothing of the constant sneering and snide comments when the two sides were trying to be civil.
            After the Illithid Invasion was broken and the Galactic Concord was coalescing into the stellar power that it is today, the subject of the Centauri Republic’s suitability was brought into question time and again. The Narn strongly fought against the Centauri be a part of the Concord largely in part of the clause in the Constitution stating that member states cannot be slavers. They equated the Centauri occupation of the Narn homeworld and decades of abuse as slavery. They also brought up the Centauri nobles treatment of the rank and file Centauri citizens, even those of “lesser” houses as proof that they violated the anti-slavery clause. In the end the Centauri Republic was allowed admission into the Concord largely due to the actions during the various battles with the Illithid and the Narn Regime relented their protests, but vowed to watch the Republic’s actions closely.
            Physical Description/Biology: Centauri are a near-human species. In fact, during the first contact between humans and Centauri, the Republic ambassadors attempted to persuade the human delegates that they are genetic cousins; even going so far to say that Earth was a long lost Centauri colony. That was quickly found false once Terran scientists analyzed a sample of Centauri DNA.
            Male Centauri wear their hair in fan-like crests, the larger the crest the higher rank that individual is in the Republic. Females tend to keep their heads shaved save for a long, braided ponytail. Males have six short, prehensile tentacles around their abdomen. These tentacles are generally kept out of sight. The few non-Centauri that have seen them can guess their purpose. They tend to dress in finery akin to that of Napoleonic-era France. Even the poorest Centauri dresses as fine as their means allow as appearance and station are paramount in the Republic.
            Personality: As stated above, station means more to Centauri than anything. Even if a Centauri is of a lower house, he will carry himself (or herself) with an air of importance and dignity, especially around non-Centauri. They are very proud of their history as a power in the galaxy, even if the tales are largely fabrications of their own imaginations. They tend to not only be arrogant and braggarts, but they are constantly looking for way to increase their own rank, be it in the Republic or with others in their own group. This has given Centauri the reputation of being schemers, liars, and cheats.
            With all the negatives that Centauri bring to the table, there are good qualities. Most are hardworking and do want to earn their higher rank in the Republic or even the Concord. When faced with difficult situations, most Centauri will act with honor and even bravery, as was seen several times throughout the course of the war against the Illithid. Younger Centauri that spend time among the other species of the Concord see just how far they are from the tales of their grandeur and they are more willing to admit the sins of the past and work towards rebuilding burnt bridges between other stellar nations that the Republic has wronged.
            Homeworld: Centauri hail from Centauri Prime (the original name for the planet is lost in time) in the Zeta Tucanae system at the heart of the Centauri Sector. The Republic was vast long before humans first walked on the moon, but their territories have shrunk considerably due to losses incurred during the Narn Revolution.
            Religion: Centauri hold to old traditions, but aren’t generally very religious. They revere great Emperors and warriors of their long history, but generally just use religion as a way to control commoners and to have an excuse for a feast.
            Mutations: Centauri genetics are surprisingly stout. They only suffer from extreme mutation in the most extreme and alien conditions. Mutant Centauri are quickly shunned at best or sentenced to a quick and painless death at worst.
            Cybernetics: While Centauri can make use of cybergear, few do unless they have a true need (like in the case of a replacement of a lost arm or leg). Cybernetics are seen as unattractive and a sign of weakness. “Better to learn to fight one-handed than be part machine!” is a saying among older, traditional Centauri.
            Psionics: Centauri can be born with the ability to utilize psionic forces. They have long known about the powers of the mind and their Telepaths Guild is highly respected. The Emperor generally has a group of telepaths as part of his personal retinue to allow for quick communication between himself and his agents.

Centauri Species Traits (Savage Worlds)
·         Born to Intrigue – Centauri are raised with intrigue, backstabbing and political maneuvering. It’s basically their second nature. This enables them to excel in influencing others, granting them +2 to their Charisma.
·         Vigorous – Centauri are noted for their personal excesses, especially of food, drink and entertainment. This has, in turn, made them more resilient – there’s little you can do to a Centauri, that he hasn’t already done to himself. Members of this race start with a d6 in Vigor.
·         Racial Enemies (Narn) – Centauri regard Narns as brutal, mindless savages, who should rightfully be either the subjects of Centauri rule or eradicated from the face of the universe. When dealing with Narns, Centauri are considered to be Bloodthirsty and at -4 Charisma.

·         Obligations to his House – There are practically no Centauri who are able to travel through the universe and don’t belong to one of the numerous minor or major noble houses. These connections will come to haunt the character from time to time and he will be asked to perform some task for the benefit of his house or for the ones his house is allied with. This works as the minor version of the Vow Hindrance 
(Savage World stats courtesy of Markus Finster's excellent Savage Babylon 5 conversion. Download it here.)

Centauri Species Traits (Rogue Space)
Archetypes: Scoundrels and Technicians, and add +1 to either Acquiring or Science.
Politics: Centauri are born and raised in an environment of politics and intrigue. They receive a +2 bonus to Acquiring rolls made when either attempting to convince others to see their way or when attempting to gather information. 
Psionics: Centauri can be Espers, with Telepathy being the most common power. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Founders of the Concord: Caitians in Mythic Space

At one time, the Caitians thought all was lost. They were driven from their home system by the Illithids, only a few hundred thousand of their kind remained alive. They sought refuge with anyone who would take them, most of whom were stellar nations that would become the Galactic Concord. Since then, the Caitians have been the staunchest defenders of the ideals of the Concord. If it weren’t for the alliance of those nations, there likely wouldn’t have been a future for the Caitians at all.
            Physical Description/Biology: Caitians are felinoids, humanoids evolved from feline species. While the species as a whole stand and weigh about the same as humans, males tend to be larger, more muscular while females tend to be lither and graceful. Caitians grow fur over the entirety of their bodies, but some will trim or even shave portions or all of their bodies. Coloration of their fur is just as wide and varied among Caitians as they are among Terran housecats. Males tend to keep their manes cut short, while females will let it grow. Most have tails, but some races only have small stub tails. Although they are humanoid, their legs are digitigrade. The soles of their feet are tough and padded such that many Caitians will forego footwear unless absolutely necessary.
            Personality: There’s an old saying in the Concord “Caitians aren't cats. Caitians are loyal.” All Caitians today are fierce supporters of the Galactic Concord. They feel a great sense of pride and honor in being part of this organization. They feel, and rightly so, that their species would have been totally lost had they not encountered the Sol Systems Alliance, the Vulcans, the Bothans, and the Minbari, all of whom took in some of their number after their homeworld was lost to the Illithids. Even though individuals may find quarrel with other individuals from other species, they will brook no insult to the Concord itself.
            Caitians are a loyal species. When a Caitian calls someone a friend that person knows that Caitian would do anything for them from offering a shoulder to cry on to avenging their untimely demise. That said, if a Caitian is betrayed, they can be as cold as the ice fields of Hoth; treating their betrayer as if they were dead.
            Caitians are also a serious people. When they set their minds to something it is hard to dissuade them. It is this level of perseverance that has allowed them to make great strides in restoring their homeworld.
            Homeworld: Caitians hail from the planet, Cait in the system of the same name. They had only colonized one other world when the Illithids turned their attention to their corner of the Alpha Quadrant. Cait is now a barely inhabitable planet, but the Caitians, along with scientists from several Concord worlds are making strides in restoring the planet. For now, most Caitians live among other Concord members, but they still have their own representative in the Senate.
            Religion: The loss of their homeworld dealt a huge blow to the faith of Caitians. Their legends and theology taught them that their world was unassailable thanks to the protection of their chief deity. The Illithids proved their priests and theologians wrong. Those that were religious before are now split between jaded atheists and those clinging to the hope that Cait can be restored as proof their god was there and didn’t allow the Illithids to win. Most Caitians may pay heed to tradition, but most don’t think much about it.
            Mutations: The occurrence of mutation among Caitians is lower than that of humans, but it is not unheard of. In fact, there has been more wild mutations among Caitians living in the bio-domes on Cait than at other point in history. It appears that something the Illithids released on Cait is having a destabilizing effect on the Caitian genetic structure.
            Cybernetics: Caitians can be installed with cybernetic upgrades and prosthetics.
            Psionics: Caitians can be psions, though the number who are able to is lower than the norm. Before the Concord, Caitian psions were looked up with fear and suspicion, largely because there was little understanding of psionics. Upon encountering other psionic species, they are less uneasy about psions in their midst and their own psions are able to receive proper training and support.

Caitian Species Traits
·         Agile: Caitians start play with a d6 in Agility.
·         Low-Light Vision: Caitians ignore penalties for poor lighting in all but pitch darkness.
·         Keen Hearing: Caitians can hear beyond the average range of most species. They receive a +2 bonus to Notice checks dealing with hearing.
·         Loyal: Caitians are loyal; to their friends, to their family, to the Concord, even to their favorite shop owners. They start play with the Loyal hindrance.

·         Poor Swimmer: Caitians are not fond of the water and suffer a -2 penalty to all Swimming skill rolls.

Caitian Species Traits (Rogue Space)
Archetypes: Scoundrel and Technician, and add +1 to either Acquiring or Science.
Keen Senses: Caitians gain a +1 bonus to Acquiring rolls that pertain to hearing. Plus, they can see in all but pitch darkness. 
Psionics: Caitian Espers are rare, but are occasionally occur. Any power is available to them. 

Monday, May 23, 2016

Founders of the Concord: Bothans in Mythic Space


Before the Illithid Invasion, the Bothans had a reputation for being sneaky, greedy, and untrustworthy. Many felt like they were smug and in on some joke only they knew the punchline to. Bothans gave the impression that they were merchants and no one gave them much thought, but during the Illithid Invasion they showed that they were much more than simple traders; they were a species to be respected and even feared.
            Not long after the Bothan joined the Galactic Concord, they made it known to their allies that they controlled a vast spy network. The revelation caused some very heated discussions about just how vast their network was, but suffice to say the Bothans had information on all of the stellar nations involved and beyond, many of whom were stellar nations the Bothans had not even officially met until the months leading up to the formation of the Concord. Their network also had gathered information on their attackers.
            The Illithid Invasion was more of a blitzkrieg, and they left little in the way of witnesses or survivors to their attacks. Therefore, information on the Illithids and their forces and technology was spotty at best and it was difficult for most intelligence agencies to separate fact from spacer fantasy. The intel from the Bothan Spynet helped change the course of the war. The allies now had a source of information that was more concrete than anything else collected. It was information from the Bothan Spynet that clued the allies in that the Ith-Kon may be a key to sowing discord in the Illithid ranks, for instance.
            Physical Description/Biology: Bothans are bipedal humanoids that are covered in fur that ripples in tune with their emotional state. Their fur ranges in color from light tan to stark black. They are shorter than the average human at around 5 feet in height. They have large ears, and long faces that make some humans think of a cross between a dog and goat. Both genders are capable of growing beards, but doing so has gone out of fashion among Bothan females.
            Personality: Knowledge is power. That has been the Bothan creed for since time out of memory. In the days before they took to the stars, Bothan clans would spy on each other, ferreting out weaknesses and secrets to exploit. Later, it was corporations and nations stealing plans, sabotaging projects, and waging wars of misinformation. To the non-Bothan, this makes their society look chaotic, disingenuous, and even narcisstic. Bothans would point out that their history has been marked by far more character assassinations than true assassinations. More Bothan corporations and nations have fallen in bloodless revolts due to espionage and propaganda than many of the other Concord member states.
            Bothans are seen as overly cautious, sneaky, and manipulative. However, Bothans are also seen as curious, brave, and strangely loyal. They make no bones about attempting to make the most of all information at their disposal, but they rarely use negative intelligence against someone who has not done something to warrant bring struck down. Those that have earned an Bothan’s trust will find that they are true friends that always have their back, even when they don’t realize it.
            Homeworld: Bothans hail from the planet, Bothawui in the Bothai system. They have colonized some nearby systems as well with Kothlis and Torolis being two of the more populous colonies.
            Religion: Much of their belief system is based on a system of Renown. Bothans revere those that have succeeded in ways far beyond that of the average Bothan. Not only do they see warriors and great leaders as near-deified heroes, but also those that have mastered a craft or trade or developed technology that benefited all of Bothan culture. The birthdays of their heroes and heroines are celebrated with various ceremonies usually tied to what the hero is famous for. Bothans in a field will often attempt to emulate the success of their chosen hero as they go about their work.
            Mutations: Bothan genetics are just as prone to wild and dramatic mutation as in humans. Mutants are common in the poorer regions of Bothan industrial complexes. Much like among humans, mutants are seen with a mixture of disgust, fear, and pity; they are shunned by most and offered meager help by others. The Bothan government has had to deal with allegations that they are shipping their mutants to remote colonies that are poorly supplied and maintained, just to keep the image of Bothawui as clean and pristine as possible. Not surprisingly, little concrete proof of such practices has been able to be brought to light.
            Cybernetics: Bothans are capable of having cybernetic implants. There is little to no stigma in using cybernetics in their culture.
            Psionics: Bothans can be psionically capable. As one can imagine, in a culture of subterfuge and espionage, having people who can divine the minds of others with simple concentration is seen as both a boon and a source of fear. Bothan psions are often sponsored by corporations and various power groups in their government, but they are kept on short leashes with many anti-psionic counter-measures being used throughout Bothan culture. Being around so many more psionically-capable species has made the Bothans a bit more paranoid than normal.

Bothan Species Traits
·         Agile: Bothans start play with a d6 in Agility.
·         Sharp Senses: Bothans are skilled in using their senses to gather information about what’s going on around them, which grants them a +2 bonus to Notice checks.
·         Fragile: Bothans aren’t as tough as other species and suffer a -1 penalty to Toughness.

·         Cautious: Bothans rarely do anything “off the cuff’. They think their words and their actions through. Bothans start play with the Cautious Hindrance. 

Bothan Species Traits (Rogue Space)
Archetypes: Scoundrels and Technicians, and add +1 to either Acquiring or Science.
Sharp Senses: Bothans gain a +1 bonus to Acquiring rolls made in relation to noticing important details through sight and sound. 
Psionics: Bothans can become Espers. Telepathy is the most common power, but all are open to them. 

Bothan Savage Worlds stats modified from Mike Glanville's excellent Savage Star Wars fanbook. 

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Founders of the Concord: Bolians in Mythic Space

Bolians are a humanoid species known for their drive, work ethic, and ability to work well with others, both Bolian and not. This ability to collaborate with others from sometimes wildly divergent cultures has made them a valuable member of the Galactic Concord.
            Physical Description/Biology: Bolains are humanoid about the same general height and weight as humans, but they tend to be slightly shorter and stockier than humans. Their skin ranges in color from yellowish-green to a darker blue-green in shade. Their blood is also high in cobalt, so it is dark blue in color.
            The most distinct feature of Bolians is the ridge that runs from the back of their necks down the center of their aces and ending at the front of their necks. Smaller ridges run perpendicular to the main ridge down the sides of their heads. Many Bolians try to accentuate their ridges by shaving their heads. This draws the eye to the ridge and their ears, which are longer than those of humans. Bolians see a bald head as a symbol of confidence and beauty. Those that decide to grow out their hair usually only do so when they live primarily around non-Bolians. Bolian hair ranges from stark white to a somewhat silvery blonde in color.
            Personality: Bolians are a very friendly and helpful species. As stated earlier, they work well with others and work best in a group. In fact, they put more importance on the success of the group than on individual accomplishments. However, while they do prefer their team to excel, Bolians do strive for positive comments about their performance. Small “atta-boys” go a long with Bolians, far farther than any grandiose trophy or award. In fact, many Bolians will become moody and taciturn if they don’t feel like their contribution is being noticed or appreciated.
            Their desire to achieve success within a team can lead Bolians to “tweak” the group dynamic. This can lead them to appear to be incessant busybodies when all they are attempting to do is subtly nudge the group is a more efficient direction. If their team isn’t performing up to standards, Bolians can become stern critics of the team and its members. Still, they try to find friendly ways to improve performance, which can cause them to look into all areas of their teammates lives, something that not all species appreciate.
            Homeworld: Bolians hail from Bolarus IX in the Bolia System. The planet is covered mostly in water with a scattering of small landmasses.
            Religion: Bolians do not have a true religion, but a set of shared legends and folktales about their ancestral home on the planet of Myrmidon in the Myrroni system not far from Bolia where they call home. Many Bolians will still make a pilgrimage to Myrmidon to hear the tales of the Bolians and the now dead Bolastre and visit the ruins that dot the world.
            Mutations: Bolians do not suffer from wild mutation like humans and many near-humans.
            Cybernetics: Bolians can be installed with cybernetics like most other species. Easily spotted head and facial cybernetics are seen as unsightly and unattractive, but that is the only stigma tied to the use of cybernetics.
            Psionics: Bolians can be psions, though the number in each generation is slightly lower than that in humans and other species.

Bolian Species Traits
·         Team Players: When a Bolian takes part in a Cooperative roll, each success grants them a +2 the roll and a +1 for each raise up to a maximum of 5 (over the usual maximum of 4).
·         Friendly: Bolians are a very friendly and cheerful people, this grants them a +2 bonus to Charisma.

·         Loyal: Bolians are loyal to a fault and start play with the Loyal hindrance. 

Bolian Species Traits (Rogue Space)
Archetypes: Soldiers and Technicians, and add +1 to either Fighting or Repair. 
Friendly: Bolians start play with an additional +1 to Empathy. 
Psionics: Bolians can be espers with Empath being the most common power. 

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Founders of the Concord: Betazoids in Mythic Space

Betazoids are a near-human species. They are so like humans that when the two species first encountered one another, the Terrans believed that Betazoids had to be a lost colony of humans. While the two species are very similar in height, weight, and build, there are some notable differences. Notably, all Betazoids are empathic and telepathic. This has caused them to be seen both with fear and suspicion and as an asset by other species. Along with the Asari, the Betazoids are credited with helping the various species that made up the initial Concord find enough common ground to band together against the Illithids.
            Physical Description/Biology: Betazoids are near-humans in every sense of the word. They have the same general height, weight, and builds as humans. The only way to tell the two species apart is by looking at their eyes. Betazoid eyes are black and limpid. Betazoids also do not have the wide range of racial differences as humans. Most have an olive complexion and dark, wavy hair, though they can range to slightly fairer complexions and have light brown hair as well, but there is no other genetic divergence in their species.
            Personality: Betazoids are generally cheerful, helpful, and friendly people. Their natural empathic abilities allow them to sense the emotional state of other beings, even those of high-order animals. They find anger and aggression almost painful to be around, so they work towards avenues that lead to peace and tranquility. Many Betazoids that work with other species find themselves working as ambassadors, mediators, and first contact specialists.
            Betazoids value honesty and integrity. Though they can lie, most rarely do. This can lead them to be brutally honest at times, which can make them appear arrogant or rude to those that are not familiar with this trait. This also means that they expect honesty from others as well. Once lied to, it is very difficult to win back a Betazoid’s trust.
            On their homeworld, and among their own kind, Betazoids communicate mostly via telepathy. It is notoriously hard to lie while in telepathic contact, so their culture has become one that is honest to a fault. Discovering that other species are uncomfortable around telepaths, most only communicate telepathically with other Betazoids while in the company of other species sparingly.
            Homeworld: Betazoids hail from the second planet in the Hainara system, Betazed. There are only four other planets in the system, three of which are gas giants, and the fourth orbits too close to their star to make colonization possible. While they have spread throughout the Alpha Quadrant, they have not colonized any other systems. They were late-comers to FTL travel and found some neighboring star systems already colonized by other species.
            Religion: Betazoids are a spiritual people believing in Four Deities that protected them from the demons of The Great Fire. Many Betazoids still worship these deities and reference them in everyday talk.
            Mutations: Like humans, Betazoids can succumb to wild mutations when subjected to the proper stimuli.
            Cybernetics: Betazoids can have cybernetics installed. However, brain-affecting cybernetics like cyberjacks, intelligence enhancers, and skill chips can make it difficult to to use their psionic abilities; in the most extreme cases, they can lose their abilities altogether. Thanks to this, cybernetic upgrades tend to only be used to replace lost limbs or organs.
            Psionics: All Betazoids are telepathic and empathic. Most do not seek to expand their abilities with further training, but there are those that do. Many of the Betazoids that work for various Concord departments have undergone training at various psionic training institutions.

Betazoid Species Traits
·         Natural Psions: Betazoids start play with two psionic power: Empathic Link and Telepathy. If your campaign uses power points, Betazoids have 5 power points to spend on these powers. If using the default No Power Points rules of Mythic Space, then Betazoids must take a penalty to their Spirit roll equal to their power point cost of the power. Those that choose to purchase the Psionics Arcane Background use the standard rules and have the two above powers as bonus powers. Those using Power Points grant Betazoid psions 5 extra power points.
·         Charismatic: Betazoids carry themselves with an air of peace and confidence, granting them a +2 bonus to Charisma.

·         Pacifists: Betazoids abhor violence and aggression and seek to diffuse situations as peacefully as possible, only resorting to force when all other avenues are closed to them. They start play with the Minor version of the Pacifist Hindrance. 

Betazoid Species Traist (Rogue Space)
Archetypes: Scoundrels or Technicians, and add +1 to either Empathy or Science. 
Psionics: Betazoids all Espers that start play with two powers; Empath and Telepathy. They have access to these powers even if they do not meet the normal Empathy requirement of +2 or more. 

Founders of the Concord: Andorians in Mythic Space

Before the Illithid Invasion, the Andorians were a militaristic and antagonistic species. Most first contact encounters went poorly, and most often ended in threats and a few even ended in bloodshed. They found a quarrel with nearly every culture they came into contact with, and often their positions were based on perceived slights that simply did not exist. However, the invasion of the Illithids into the heart of the Alpha Quadrant forced the burgeoning Concord to reach out to the Andorians with a request for aid in the war. This request made the Andorians feel as though they truly were respected after all. Even though their passion still runs hot, they have become a cornerstone of the Galactic Concord.
            Physical Description/Biology: Andorians are humanoid, with the same general dimorphism between the genders as many humanoid species, though they actually have four genders and require two couples for successful copulation. The most distinguishing features of Andorians is their blue skin that ranges from pale to dark in shade, stark white hair, and the two antennae that sprout from their heads. Their antennae gives them sensory input about the temperature, changes in air pressure and air flow, and even allows them to perceive some sub-sonic sounds.
            Andorians live in frigid conditions and their bodies are designed to help regulate and conserve their body heat. Even though they live in temperatures where the warmest is akin to living at the South Pole of Earth, their circulatory system allows them to be comfortable in all but the hottest of climates.
            Personality: Andorians are passionate, sometimes very passionate. They tend to have hot tempers and are willing to fight and even die to defend their honor and ideals. That said, their history is riddled with disastrous conflicts caused by declaring a bloody vendetta for small slights, and they have learned the error of their ways…to a point.
            Today, Andorians have a clear chain of command in their society. While they are still quick to anger, gone are the days of the vendetta, instead they defend their honor with duels that while often lead to bloodshed, rarely end with the loss of life.
            Although the Andorians are hot-tempered, they also use their passion in other pursuits. Andorians are romantics at heart. They love greatly and they feel deeply and channel those emotions into their art. Andorian writers and artists are popular throughout the Concord and beyond. They are also fiercely loyal to those they lose and respect, be they Andorian or otherwise.
            Homeworld: Andorians hail from the frigid world of Andor (also known as Andoria). It is the fifth planet in the Kuy’va system. They have colonies on two of the other planets in their home system, but have not colonized other star systems.
            Religion: Surprisingly few Andorians are religious, given how passionate they are about nearly every other aspect of life. However, they do have a religion based around a deity known as Uzaveh the Infinite. Even though there are not regular services like those found in many Terran religions, Andorians do follow rituals to mark certain milestones in life from reaching adulthood, to the birth of a child, to death that are religiously inspired.
            Mutations: Andorians can have mutations under the right circumstances, but this is a rare occurrence.
            Cybernetics: Andorians can be outfitted with cybertech. Even though there has long been research into cybernetic antennae, so far there has been no breakthroughs in the creations of synthetic antennae replacements.
            Psionics: Psionics are uncommon among the Andorians, even then, those that do have the potential either do not get trained in their use or live away from other Andorians. They see the use of such abilities as dishonorable and breach upon individual liberties.

Andorian Species Traits
·         Tough Hides: Andorian flesh is tough, almost like a flexible exoskeleton. Add +1 Armor to Toughness.
·         Alert: Thanks to their antennae, Andorians start play with the Alert edge.
·         Redundant Circulation: Andorians can withstand extreme cold temperatures better than other species. When making Vigor tests for exposure to Extreme cold, they only receive penalties to their Vigor checks at every 40 degrees below freezing as opposed to the standard 20 degrees. However, they are more susceptible to poisons thanks to their circulation system and suffer a -1 penalty to Vigor rolls made against poisons.

·         Code of Honor: To Andorians, their honor is everything. Andorians start play with the Code of Honor hindrance. They take offense to any spoken word or action that could in any way be construed that they are not considered at least equal to those they are dealing with. 

Andorian Species Traits (Rogue Space)
Archetypes: Soldiers and Technicians, and add +1 to either Fighting or Science.
Antennae: Andorians gain a +1 bonus to Acquire rolls made to detect atmospheric conditions or to hear sub-sonic sounds. 
Redundant Circulation: Andorians receive a +1 bonus to Fighting rolls made against the effects of extreme cold, but receive a -1 penalty to Fighting rolls made against poisons. 
Psionics: Andorians can be Espers with Telepathy and ESP being the most common powers. 

Friday, May 20, 2016

Founders of the Concord: Aleerins (Mechalus) in Mythic Space

The Aleerins, also known as Mechalus, are a species of humanoids that blend flesh and metal unlike any other species. Orderly and logical, they hide passion in their hearts that strive to keep buried except around those that they fully trust.
The Aleerins made first contact with what was then known as the Terran Authority, or the Sol Systems Alliance now, not long after the First Contact Wars. Although relations where cool between the two parties at first, the emergence of the Illithid threat made them realize that it was better to be part of the galaxy instead of trying to survive alone.
Physical Description/Biology: An aleerin can be easily mistaken for a human at a distance or in poor lighting, for he bears the general shape and size of a human. Closer inspection, however, reveals veins of circuitry that weave with the aleerin’s flesh and blood to form a totally synthesized body. An aleerin’s hair consists of combined protein strands and filaments of cable and wire. Even the aleerin’s skeleton has been reinforced with super-strong synthetic materials, and bony protective plates cover the bio-organic flesh at the shoulders and across the chest. The aleerins’ appearance has led to humans calling them “mechalus” (singular and plural), and the aleerins don’t seem to mind.

Aleerins are slightly heavier than humans, on average, but their builds are less varied. The average aleerin stands approximately 6 feet tall and weighs 175 to 200 pounds. Aleerins tend to have well-proportioned, athletic frames. Their lustrous turquoise eyes are opaque and have no visible pupils.

Aleerins share an affinity for computers. While they can easily employ standard computer interfaces, aleerins have the ability to personally connect with computer systems. Filaments can extend from an aleerin’s fingers, snake into a computer, and form a solid link between aleerin and machine. This link gives the aleerin speed-of-thought access to the computer system, with more precise control than any manual interface can provide.

Personality: Aleerins have ordered minds, which translates into a highly structured society and an equally organized outlook on life. Although they think with the precision and logic of a machine, they are deeply emotional people who work hard to subdue their negative emotions. They possess the same range of emotions as humans, although they downplay hostility or aggression. Aleerins have demonstrated violent tendencies in the past. Their early forays into space placed them at odds with another warlike race, which the aleerins ultimately annihilated. Appalled by this heinous act and jarred by an unexpected emotional backlash, modern aleerins have made a conscious and consistent effort to suppress or regulate their more primal nature.

In a tense or dangerous situation, aleerins are likely to remain calm and rational. They easily suppress their emotions when they deem such action appropriate or necessary. However, in a climate of relaxation and celebration, their emotional pendulum can swing to the other extreme—to other species, it seems as though they are making a special effort to appear cheerful or jubilant. The aleerins do not consider their behavior at such times to be exaggerated. Strong displays of positive emotion, when the situation permits, afford them the chance to demonstrate that they are not merely machines encased in biological bodies.

Homeworld: Aleerins hail from the highly advanced world of Davck in the Mehal system. They have not colonized other worlds, though they do maintain several space station in the system.

Religion: Officially, there is no religion in Aleerin culture. However, their connection to technology and their continuing desire for technological perfection reaches near fanatical levels. Some Aleerin express interest in the religious beliefs of other cultures, and may even take part in a religion for a while, but few ever stick with it.

Mutations: Aleerins have a very strong genetic makeup that is nearly as rigid as their personalities. Birth defects and genetic disorders are rare and mutation is unheard of.

Cybernetics: Aleerins are born with cybernetics as part of their bodies. There is more of a stigma of not being outfitted with cybernetics than there ever could be about having cybernetics installed.  To them, cybernetics are as common as jewelry is to most other species.

Psionics: Aleerins have little aptitude with psionics. Some individuals do have the ability for psionics, but it has been estimated that as little as .01% of each generation has the ability.

Aleerin Species Traits
·         Hardy: Aleerins start play with a d6 in Vigor.
·         Cybernetic Adaptability: When calculating the character’s maximum strain, treat the higher die (Vigor or Spirit) as one die higher than it actually is to a maximum of d12). Also, when having a Street Doc install and remove cybernetics, Aleerins suffer only a -2 penalty during installation, and a -1 penalty during removals.
·         Computer Link: An Aleerin can make a Computers check to connect to a computer by touch. This connection allows an Aleerin to control the computer via speed of thought rather than relying on manual coordination. This link can be severed by the Aleerin or whenever he cannot reach the computer any longer.
·         Quirk: All Aleerins try to keep their stronger emotions (anger, hatred, frustration, even laughter and love) in check.
·         Rigid: Aleerins tend to be too “stiff” to many other species. When dealing with non-Aleerins, an Aleerin character suffers a -4 penalty to Charisma checks. 

Aleerin Species Traits (Rogue Space)
Archetypes: Soldier or Technician, and add +1 to either Fighting or Science
One with Machines: Aleerins start play with the Brainware implant that allows them to interface with computers easily. In addition, they can install two pieces of cybertech before having to lower their Empathy by the typical -1. 
Psionics: Aleerins cannot be Espers. 

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Founders of the Concord: Asari in Mythic Space

Mass Effect - The Asari by JoesHouseOfArt
Art by Joe Black

The Asari are a humanoid species made up entirely of all single gender. Since Asari look and, generally, sound female, they are generally regarded as, and treated as, females by other species with the standard sexual dimorphism.
            The Asari were the first Concord species to traverse the stars. They discovered the Citadel, and have initiated more first contact meetings than any other Concord member. The Asari Republic has always been the cornerstone of the Concord. Without the Asari, there likely wouldn’t be a Concord.
            Physical Description/Biology: Asari are humanoids standing around six feet tall. They are hairless, save for eyelashes. Asari skin color ranges from pink to light blue to green to dark purple in color (the “father’s” genetics playing a large role into the tone) with some showing patterns or blotches on the skin and others having clear complexions. Asari tend to be lithe or athletic as most take generally good care of themselves with corpulence being a stark rarity in their society. The most distinguishing feature are the ridges that start at the top of their foreheads and sweep to the back of their skulls. These ridges are made of cartilage and cover their small ears.
As stated above, their forms are female, but that is a great oversimplification of their biology. Asari procreate via a form of parthenogenesis. They psychically attune their nervous systems to their mate’s and glean genetic material from the mate to create a child. Asari are mammalian in that they bear live young after a gestation period of about seven months and generally breastfeed their infants for up to a year of more after that. This unique form of procreation allows Asari to not only mate with each other but also with members of other species as well to produce viable offspring. The children born from these relationships are always Asari.
The Asari are an unusually long-lived species. It is not unheard of for an Asari to live to see 700 standard years. 800 is rare, but still occurs, with the oldest known Asari having lived to be 912 years old. They grow up at a rate similar to that of humans, but are not considered adults until about their 30th year, which is when most Asari hit the first major stage in life: Maidenhood.
There are three major stages in the life of an Asari. Maidenhood is one of restlessness, daring, and the testing of limits and boundaries. Asari usually hit this stage around 30 years old. This is typically the time when an Asari will make her mistakes or take her greatest risks, but also where they go out and begin to discover the world and themselves.
The Matron stage is dominated by the desire to settle down and raise a family. Asari generally hit this stage around their 350th year, though it can vary greatly.
The final stage is that of Matriarch. Matriarchs tend to get involved in their communities, and seek to share their knowledge. Most Matriarchs return to Asari dominated worlds, and are rarely found away from large populations of Asari.
Asari still largely mate within their own kind, but ever since it was first discovered that they can mate with other species, there has been an ever growing trend for Asari to find mates among other species. They see this as a way to bring in a diverse genetic plate to the Asari “table.” Most see it as only making their species stronger. There are some hardliners in Asari society that feel that only pureblood Asari are true Asari, but seeing as how no one can tell a pureblood from a mixed Asari the movement continues to stay to the farthest fringes of Asari society.
The idea of genetic diversity only got more popular when it was discovered that children of mixed parentage cannot develop the Ardat-Yakshi mutation. Asari with this mutation can overload the nervous systems of their mates, causing intense pain which nearly always leads to death. Ardat-Yakshi are greatly feared in Asari society even though the chances of developing the mutation is about 1 in 500 purebloods. Most of these Asari are discovered early in life through genetic tests done after birth, but in some the mutation does not show up until they hit puberty. Ardat-Yakshi are generally kept cloistered in various communes on Asari controlled worlds away from others. However, some do not wish to be hidden away and go on the run. Most try to lead solitary lives or do not form attachments and certainly never mate, but other revel in the power to kill with pleasure. Those Ardat-Yakshi that do are greatly feared.
Personality: Asari personalities can vary greatly depending on what stage of life they are in. Maidens tend to be carefree, brash, and prone to the wildness of youth. Matrons tend to be more reserved and cautious. Matriarchs are patient, but confident when speaking and carry themselves in a way that tends to command respect. However, these are not hard and fast rules. Some maidens are driven and focused, while some Matriarchs couldn’t give a damn about their communities.
One constant throughout most Asari is that they tend to be patient, even maidens in their “impertinent” years tend to see the big picture, where other species that do not live as long cannot fully fathom. This makes many Asari good listeners, diplomats, and consulars.
Homeworld: Asari hail from the second planet in the Parnitha system, Thessia. They have traveled the stars for over 3000 years, making them one of the most well-versed explorers in the Concord. However, they have only made a handful of other worlds their own. Merlonnia, Loquaint, and Heronna being other Asari worlds.
Religion: Most Asari are atheists, but some still believe in the idea of Siara. Siarists believe that the cosmos has a consciousness, and that when someone dies they return to this pool of consciousness that all life in the universe is drawn from.
Mutations: Other than the genetic defect that makes an Asari an Ardat-Yakshi, Asari do not suffer from mutation and therefore cannot be mutants.
Cybernetics: Like many humanoid species, Asari can be outfitted with cybernetics. There is no cultural stigma to having cybernetics installed, but they are not widely used.
Psionics: Asari are naturally psychic beings, as it is how they mate. However, while most Asari possess the ability to be trained into psions, only a slightly higher percentage do when compared to the norm across the Concord species.

Asari Species Traits
·         Attractive: Asari are generally seen as desirable by a large number of species. They start play with the Attractive Edge.
·         Innate Telepathy: Asari have the innate ability to share thoughts and feelings via telepathy. The target must be willing and it requires great concentration and skin-to-skin contact. There is no real inherent in-game benefit to this power.

New Hindrance
Requirement: Asari only.
The character carries the mutation that make her one of the dreaded Ardat-Yakshi. Anytime the character uses her Innate Telepathy ability roll a test of wills between the character and her mate/victim. If the victim loses, roll a Vigor test. If that roll succeeds, then the victim is merely rendered unconscious. If the test fails, then the victim is killed. If the test of wills is won by the victim, contact is broken off between the two and combat can likely ensue.
            Ardat-Yakshi roaming the galaxy is a danger to everyone. Among Asari, an Asari with this hindrance suffers a -4 penalty to any Charisma checks. If the Ardat-Yakshi is dealing with other species that know what an Ardat-Yakshi is (which is possible in any system with even a handful of regular Asari residents), then they suffer a -2 penalty to Charisma. Ardat-Yakshi are hunted by special Asari operatives tasked with capturing peaceful Ardat-Yakshi and killing any who revel in their mutation. 

Asari Species Traits (Rogue Space)
Archetypes: Soldier or Technician, add +1 to either Fighting, Empathy, or Science.
Innate Telepathy: Asari can all use the Telepathy Psionic Power only by touching their target and the target being willing to the joining. If those qualifiers are met, the two can share experiences and thoughts. 
Ardat-Yakshi: If the player desires, the character can have this mutation. When using the Innate Telepathy power, both the Asari and the target make Empathy rolls. If the Asari's is higher, then the target must make a Fighting roll against TN 9 or die. Even then, the target still falls unconscious. If the target wins, contact is broken and then the scene continues to play out. 
Psionics: Asari can become Espers. Most have the Telepathy power, but any are open to them.