Cepheus Journal #11: The Alien Issue

The latest issue of the Cepheus Journal, the free Cepheus Engine fanzine, recently came out. It’s issue #11, centered around the theme of Aliens. Though it’s a Cepheus Engine-specific publication, a lot of the articles are system-agnostic and might work for any Sci-Fi game. Definitely worth a download.

This isn’t a complete review of every article, just a series of highlights.

The Koszrans: Paul Drye contributes a really interesting low-tech alien society that is slowly terraforming a near-lifeless planet. Lots of really good adventure seeds for these beings and their world are provided.

Other Folk’s Gold: Brett Kruger’s article about adapting ideas from the Netflix series Love, Death, and Robots. A lot of useful setting and adventure ideas here.

Down and Out in Low Orbit: Jo Jaquinta discusses a number of ideas concerning the run-down, squalid sections of orbital space stations. Interesting notions about poor gravity, infestations, and pollution issues are discussed. It’s all system agnostic and would work really well with games like Alien or Mothership.

Designing Aliens: A reprint of Jim Vassilakos’s article from the Alarums & Excursions fanzine, about using a random generator to create a new alien species. An example alien species is provided, and the author then demonstrates how to flesh out the details. Here’s a link to the generator.

Almost Alien: Perhaps my favorite article. It’s Jo Jacquinta’s outline of a scenario about getting involved with the romantic entanglements of a group of uplifted chimpanzees. It involves a marriage proposal, lava surfing, a hovercraft land rush, and most surprisingly, a bit of philosophical musing about culture and history.

Beast from Beyond the Stars: This is my small contribution to this issue. It’s an adaptation of the 1983 mostly-forgotten fantasy movie Krull to the Cepheus Engine. Specifically, the Sword of Cepheus and Barbaric! systems. I posted a preview of this article a few weeks ago.

There are a number of other solid articles as well. You can download this issue and all of the previous issues at the Cepheus Journal site.

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