Relics On The Frontier #1 (Alien RPG)

I've been a huge fan of the Alien franchise since I was a kid. I've probably read every book, watched every movie (official and fan-made) and I've probably listened to every Alien Theory video that's come out thus far. 

Something about it always grabs me. It's cosmic horror in space. It's Lovecraft with kenophobia instead of claustrophobia, and the elements from Prometheus only make it more so. Reading about Engineer relics and the Fulfremmen out in the depths of space stirs me. It's terrifying. It's exciting. It's inspiring.

I don't know if I'll ever run a game of Free League's Alien RPG (maybe I'll run the setting with something simple someday which I know well, like RISUS) but I do like to play around in other people's universes, so here's a little something that you can mix into your setting to give it spice. Whether you like the Engineers or not, there is still "The Derelict" from the first film, from which everything Alien related has sprung. Surely such a craft is not the only one of its kind! Surely whatever species built it has built other things just waiting to be found. This is one of those.

Borquist In The Mist

Survey Team Echo Beta dropped into the hazy atmosphere of LV-771b fifty-six hours ago following probe reports of an unusual energy signature and never reported in. Their starship, the UNCSS Borquist, went silent shortly before landing and colonial administration is expecting the worst. A salvage and rescue team has been dispatched to survey the landing site and try to recover anything of the Borquist and her crew that they can. The player characters are part of that salvage and rescue team.

Going in, they are briefed on what they're likely to find: A botched landing, a ship in need of repairs and a crew in need of medical assistance at best. Most likely, what they're going to find is a smoking crater, but if they can at least get their hands on the black box, the Company will have something it can use to cash out the insurance policy on the Borquist.

What the salvage and rescue team find instead is an undamaged ship gone totally dark. It's in perfect shape, with everything neatly tucked away and packed like the whole crew just closed up shop, turned off the lights and left. All of the computer systems have been wiped and set to factory defaults, and even the black box is blank. Here and there, they find sticky notes that someone has scrawled with the words they whistle for us. 

The whole time the PCs are exploring the Borquist, they periodically hear a sound like someone is whistling a little tune somewhere within the ship. It's ghostly, and there's no apparent source, but as the PCs start to hear it more and more often, they find their attention drawn to a spot out in the darkness, about two kilometers north-west of the Borquist. Strange sensations pull at them, urging them to pack up their belongings, drop everything they don't need to survive and make the trek out toward the source of the whistling hallucinations. If they give in to these urges, they will eventually make their way to The Whistling Keep.

The Whistling Keep

The Whistling Keep is an Engineer facility that has been abandoned for at least ten thousand years. Carefully grown to cultivate a subsonic whistling from the surface winds, it also calls to sentient beings on the planet's surface using hallucinations and the triggering of long-buried instincts. What the purpose of the facility is and what the state of the crew of the Borquist is remains up to you as the Game Mother. Why does the Keep draw people to itself? Is it a place of deep meditation left long in disuse that calls sentient beings to come and experience trancendental meditation? Is it a beacon to draw in prey for a vault full of xenomorph eggs? Is it a honeypot meant to lure in Fulfremmen so that they can be trapped, captured for study and/or destroyed? Maybe it is all of these. Maybe the Perfected have claimed it for themselves and they are using it to draw in those who will wake them so they can spread their infection through the stars again. There are a lot of different ways you can go with this.

Whatever wonders or horrors they find, there are other forces you can bring in to keep up the pressure. Maybe The Company dispatches a highly trained team to secure the location and leave no witnesses. Maybe the planet is in a contested or unclaimed area of space and the UPP swoops in to try to seize whatever the PCs find. Maybe something much older and more terrifying returns to the keep, or wakens within it. Maybe all of these things happen and the players are caught in between. That could be some intense chaos.

A Final Note:

I've just about finished reading Alien RPG: Building Better Worlds and it left me wishing for more content. Also, Bing makes some great images that I wanted to share. If this ends up being something people like, I will write more. Let me know!

Also, it goes without saying that I do not own anything within the Alien universe, this is just a work of fan fiction aimed at players of the RPG.



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