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Old 04-08-2017, 04:49 AM   #1
giggioz
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Default Suggestions for Alien campaign

Goodmorning, new group of pseudo beginners is starting a new campaign.
I let them to choose the setting and they came up with some vague ideas :
- USA 1950
- suddenly misterious alien ships appear scattered in different places in the world
- some players suggested that thier characters are all ex-nazis escaped from germany and they helped allies to win the war (?!)
-for the reason above they are sort of trusted people and they were selected to take first contact with the aliens (?!)
- nobody knows aliens' pourposes

This seems pretty similar to the Arrival (and others) movie but this is not important :)

I'm asking you some hints on how to manage this alien race looking for something 'original' :
- who are they
- where are they come from
- of course, why are they here
- possible game scenarios

I do not know if the players are the action people or more investigative. I'm going to figure this out during the first session, for this i would appreciate moderate suggestions that do not lean too much in a specific genre.

If you could also address me in to some resources about USA in the 1950 would be great.

Thanks!
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Old 04-08-2017, 04:57 AM   #2
RyanW
 
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Default Re: Suggestions for Alien campaign

One idea I've wanted to use is an alien federation arriving to integrate humanity into their own society (culturally, politically, and genetically) with no idea why this would be seen as hostile.
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Old 04-08-2017, 05:59 AM   #3
khorboth
 
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Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Denver, CO
Default Re: Suggestions for Alien campaign

Humans have recently put out some massive signals in space (and hyperspace) with the atomic bombs. The ailens spent a few years investigating the species to see if they are of any use.

Possibilities:

They are looking to recruit soldiers for an ongoing war, humans have recently proven that they can militarize quickly.

They are quietly kidnapping humans to serve as slave labor.

They are evaluating the race as a whole to determine if they are morally sound enough to continue existing.

Sandy beaches are very rare in the universe and Earth has them in great quantity. Various corporate representatives are looking to open tourism, but don't want humans to know what a treasure trove they are sitting on.

Several different species are racing to be the first to fully tame these new pets for themselves as some kind of weird entertainment. The first one to be elected to a country's highest office wins.

I'm not so good at individual scenarios.
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Old 04-08-2017, 09:35 AM   #4
Tinman
 
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Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: New York City
Default Re: Suggestions for Alien campaign

Quote:
Originally Posted by giggioz View Post
If you could also address me in to some resources about USA in the 1950 would be great.

Thanks!
You need to pick up a copy of GURPS Atomic Horror! It's a 3e book but it's full of information about the US in the 50' & the alien movies that were popular then.
I think it's exactly the resource you are looking for.
http://www.warehouse23.com/products/...-atomic-horror
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Old 04-08-2017, 09:55 AM   #5
Varyon
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Default Re: Suggestions for Alien campaign

One theory behind UFO's is that they aren't extraterrestrial, but rather some advanced, native species that lives in the ocean depths. Having that be the case here, with all the old sitings be their scouts who were gathering information to decide if the surface was worth a full excursion, might work as an interesting plot twist on the "Who are they?" and "Where do they come from?" fronts.

As for "Why are they here?" you have plenty of options. They may have finally perfected surface-colonization technology and want to expand their borders, be it through trade or conquest. Maybe they're upset about excessive whaling (you may want your alternate Earth to have never created the International Whaling Commission back in 1946). Maybe they've acquired a taste for beef and would like to acquire more of the delicacy. Maybe they don't even think humans are sapient - Ender's Game played with this, with the Formics thinking humans were mindless animals due to their lack of a psionic connections - and are simply exploring the surface en masse.

Scenarios can range anywhere from establishing diplomatic relations (which might involve trying to figure out how to get the "aliens" to recognize humans as people) to brokering trade agreements to fighting a bloody war of attrition. Hell, you could have all three - an initial war while the aliens think the humans are just animals, establishment of diplomatic relations and cessation of hostilities upon proving themselves otherwise, and brokering trade agreements (possibly including appropriate reparations) in the aftermath.
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Old 04-08-2017, 10:05 AM   #6
jason taylor
 
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Portland, Oregon
Default Re: Suggestions for Alien campaign

Quote:
Originally Posted by khorboth View Post
Humans have recently put out some massive signals in space (and hyperspace) with the atomic bombs. The ailens spent a few years investigating the species to see if they are of any use.

Possibilities:

They are looking to recruit soldiers for an ongoing war, humans have recently proven that they can militarize quickly.

They are quietly kidnapping humans to serve as slave labor.

They are evaluating the race as a whole to determine if they are morally sound enough to continue existing.

Sandy beaches are very rare in the universe and Earth has them in great quantity. Various corporate representatives are looking to open tourism, but don't want humans to know what a treasure trove they are sitting on.

Several different species are racing to be the first to fully tame these new pets for themselves as some kind of weird entertainment. The first one to be elected to a country's highest office wins.

I'm not so good at individual scenarios.
They do not consider us particularly important. They are just random ships stopping to forage for supplies along the way.

There is a disastrous war far away and the aliens are refugees.

The aliens are outlaws in their own country.
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Old 04-08-2017, 11:27 AM   #7
Leeland
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Default Re: Suggestions for Alien campaign

I myself always liked the viewpoint that humans are some kinda-spaceorcs:

http://imgur.com/gallery/XpThccW

Maybe the aliens need the humans to fight of some external thread of theirs, but are unsure how to aproach us without getting killed themself.
So they have watched and studied for a while, but now the thread is so close that they have to make contact or all is lost...
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Old 04-08-2017, 01:36 PM   #8
giggioz
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Default Re: Suggestions for Alien campaign

Once again, thanks a ton, this forum is a real treasure.

I'll take some time to think about these beautiful hints and, in case i'll need to dig a bit more, i'll be back :)

Last edited by giggioz; 04-08-2017 at 01:45 PM.
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Old 04-08-2017, 02:42 PM   #9
KarlKost
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Brazil
Default Re: Suggestions for Alien campaign

I think that, for a hard sci fi, you'd need to view aliens as magical demigods. Make a kick research about the cult to "John Frum", its fascinating, and will give you an idea of what Im talking about.

Anyway, wars over resources are highly unlikely, and its almost Science Fantasy. Resources over the universe are VAST. And, its far easier to mine asteroids than planets.

But, Wars could happen due to culture. The movie "Predator", for example, gives us an alien race of Warriors. So, their only purpose... Is to be better fighters.

There is also one story I heard about "metallians", living beings made of metal. Those metallians found out another race. This other race is the classical "neural parasite". Well, those parasites were just mindless worms. However, a highly inteligent and technological race came in contact with them... And were infected. So, the parasites won the sentience of their hosts. Soon enough, they took over the host race. And became one symbiotic single race.

The parasites, however, became obcessed with developing their bodies. Soon enough, they replaced their old hosts for ciborg bodies (keeping only their original "worm" essence).

When the parasites came into contact with the metalians, they became fascinated about such wounderful bodies. And, using diplomatic approach, offered to buy the "cyborg technologies" of the metalians.

"Cyborg? No no, thats our NATURAL bodies".

"Are you biological beings?!?"

Annnnnd.... The parasites started a war with the metalians to "acquire" the best bodies in the universe.

That's one option. Others could include some kind of Religious zealoutry (all races are an abomination to the Creator!), or cultural bygotry (Hail Hitlerzerg!). Scientific research are another possibility.

However, wars between TL 7/8 against aliens TL 10/11 is a thing for Hollywood only, not hard sci fi. Its like attacking aborigenous with sticks and rocks using tanks and rifles.
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Old 04-08-2017, 02:47 PM   #10
KarlKost
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Brazil
Default Re: Suggestions for Alien campaign

About "slavery", thats also another "Hollywood only" thing. For a soft sci fi, thats fine. But its more fantasy than a REAL possibility (unless, of course, you wanna make a TV program on History Channel about how some old race travelled thousands of light years to make our ancestors pile rocks). The thing is, robots (or even organic Bioroids drones) are a far better working force than ANY enslaved race. So, not really a thing (for hard sci fi of course)
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