In the darkest corners of the universe exist creatures known to most as Aliens: partially humanoid creatures that possess extreme intelligence, physical strength, and sharp acumen. Aliens often work together as part of a larger hivemind they can telepathically communicate (:a) with. Their main prerogative is to harvest other biological specimens they encounter to feed and nourish a hive in order to reproduce. These aliens can come in many different classes, hunters, drones, and sentinels which use various abilities such as acid globs, hive constructions, and throwable facehuggers to support their hive. Individually, these aliens can be taken down with relative ease, however, in large numbers, they're known to easily take out entire stations and military installations.
The terrible tales of the universe passed around by deep-space ship crews and station cantina patrons often contain legends of bluespace anomalies, treacherous freight routes, and the occasional pirate encounter; However, to a select few, there is a known threat that is far scarier than whatever the natural forces of the universe could produce: Aliens. Among experienced captains and crew, they're known as the biological terror that is responsible for the disappearance of crews and stations across the many systems. To your average spacefarer, they're nothing more than a monster in your closet.
Historians are unsure of when aliens were first encountered or how they came into existence, they often refer to the proliferation of aliens as a pattern more akin to the spread of disease. Most attempts to study these aliens have led to the loss of many scientific sites as well as high-profile biologists, epidemiologists, and zoologists. While Nanotrasen has never publically admitted to it, there are rumors that the corporation had lost a moon installation due to this exact reason. Once the intelligence and wit of these creatures became known to the scientific community, it opened up the doors for study by psychologists, although these studies have yet to progress very far.
Today, the community has only a basic understanding of the biological makeup of these aliens and some concepts of social structures. Scientists know that each alien "serves" a queen and that the hive as a whole work to constantly expand nests and integrate biological resources into the hive. What is not understood is why a creature such as a hyper-intelligent hive-queen often acts outside of its own accords and best interest, almost as it serves a higher power. This has drawn the interest of many theologists and has raised questions as to the origin and purpose of more specialized castes such as alien praetorians and sentinels.
However, the public does not know most of this. Once the true danger of these aliens was discovered by various organizations across the universe, a very tight lid was placed over disseminating knowledge regarding them. For many political powers, the "idea" of aliens served a better purpose as a political tool. While aliens are still viable as fear-mongering devices or biological weapons, it is unlikely that academic documentation regarding the species will ever be declassified.
Aliens can arrive on to the station in different ways. The most common way is to have them rolled for a major midround role. Two alien larva will spawn, four if there are 80 players or more connected to the server. These larva spawn near vent ducts, and are set to be already 80% through their evolution cycle.
Xenomorphs may also be spawned by an admin if they so please, although it's rather rare due to their tendency to force rounds to end.
Playing as Aliens
You can talk to the hivemind by using 'say ":a' (e.g. Say ":a I'm an alien!").
All Aliens will first spawn as fragile and easily killed larva. As a larva you only have a weak attack, can vent crawl (alt+left click vent), and can plant weeds. Unless the larva spawns in an alien nest, finding a vent is a larvas best chance of survival. Additionally, due to being small creatures, larva can use the "hide" verb in the alien tab and hide under structures such as tables.
The main goal of larva is to survive until they can evolve. Larva will slowly accrue resources over time. While this is passive, larva can sit on alien weeds to accelerate your evolution, generate plasma, and heal. Additionally, biting humanoid corpses as a larva will also increase resources. Under your 'Status' tab, there's a progress bar. When it reaches 200, larva can use the evolve verb in the alien tab to evolve into one of three adult alien variations.
As an evolved alien, you have a lot more freedom in what you can do. Your intents are significantly different from a humans.
Help - You nuzzle other creatures. You can use this on fellow aliens to remove 6 seconds of Stun, Weaken, Knockdown,and Paralysis along with 10 seconds of sleep.
Stun - You tackle humans and knockdown for 10 seconds and do 30 stamina damage. This ability will weaken cyborgs and other silicons for 4 seconds.
Harm - You slash at humans doing 20 brute damage.
Grab - When you aggressively grab a human, you can then click yourself to devour them. This takes some time, and they can escape if they aren't stunned. Be careful, as humans can still move around in your stomach, and if they have sharp implements, they may just break out.
File:Alien Hunt.png - Running move, allow alien to move at full speed
File:Alien Stalk.png - Stealth mode, aliens move at a very slow speed but are nearly impossible to see in the darkness
The various alien classes
Below are a list of some of your powers:
Xenomorphs run on plasma. Your body stores plasma and your powers need it to work. You can absorb plasma two ways: plasma in the air and weeds. These effects can stack. If you don't plant weeds, you won't build plasma, so plant those weeds and store some up. If you waste your plasma before you plant weeds you are screwed, unless plasma is in the air, and even then you absorb far more plasma over time from weeds.
Now comes decision time. Do you want to evolve into a queen or be a marauding hunter/sentinel?
- If you are the first (or one of the first) aliens, you should evolve into a queen. Without a queen, there is no way to spawn additional facehuggers, and no way to expand the brood. Aliens are not a threat without facehuggers, so queens are a must-have.
- If there's already a queen, you can choose to stay as a regular adult and start creating chaos. There are good reasons to do this. Queens move slow and cannot vent crawl, so having hunter aliens makes collecting new hosts much easier.
For the sake of this guide we will assume you are one of the first aliens, but if you join as an alien partway into the infestation of the station you can skip to the final phase.
- Since you probably want to become a queen, you'll have to pick Drone. Your best bet is to just sit tight and build up 500 plasma to evolve. The sooner, the better.
- The crew may probably be looking for you at this point, so make sure you're in a relatively safe spot.
- Once you evolve you are very slow and won't be able to vent crawl. You will be very vulnerable until you build up an army of facehuggers, so plan your nesting ground accordingly.
- Areas such as genetics and virology often have monkeys or other lesser forms of carbon mobs, nesting in those locations can be helpful for growing your numbers.
- During this time you can continue to scout around through various vents and see where people on the station are.
- It's a good idea to plant weeds everywhere, as they give you healing and plasma generation, every alien with plasma to spare should be planting them.
- Now it's time to play the waiting game again. 500 plasma and it's on to phase three.
Prologue - Facehuggers
An alien is on my face, help!
If a facehugger jumps onto, or is thrown onto someone's face, it will rip off their mask (if they have one) and attempt to infect their victim, which takes some time. If a facehugger successfully latches onto you, you'll be knocked down, blinded, and unable to remove the facehugger until it infects you and dies naturally (or you yourself die!). Some helmets will prevent facehuggers from latching onto your face, a full list of items can be found below.
|Items that prevent facehuggers from infecting you|
|Facehugging prevention wear:
NORMALLY UNOBTAINABLE ITEMS
Being facehugged is a less serious issue for IPC or golems, who cannot be implanted. The facehugger will relax its grasp on incompatible hosts a few seconds after latching on, allowing you to take it off and dispose of it.
If you've been infected, there will usually be telltale signs. You'll feel sick. Your throat will be sore. You'll cough a lot. These symptoms mean you are forming a larva. Using a Health Analyzer will show an Unidentified Foreign Body if you are infected, and a health scanner hud will show an alien embryo.
There are a couple of way to deal with this. Either removing the larva through Surgery, or having a heart and lungs prepared for when the larva eventually rips out of your chest. An alien larva deals 300 brute damage to the chest, which will cause your heart and lungs to be removed from that body part and spill on to the floor. If a larva emerges during surgery, it will only deal 40 brute damage to the chest.
Being killed pre-burst does not prevent the larva from eventually hatching, it will slow the hatching process, however.
Phase Three - As a Queen
I'm a queen, but how is babby formed?
Below is a summary of the Queen class:
|Corrosive acid||Takes (200) plasma and can melt almost any object adjacent to you. It does take a while though, and can't melt reinforced walls. Also appears in the right-click menu.|
|Lay egg||Takes (75) plasma. Your unique skill. Lays an egg which will hatch into a facehugger. Facehuggers can then be used to make more larva.|
|Plant weeds||Takes (50) plasma, and it something you should be doing often. Makes purple sacs which spawn weeds around them and allow aliens to heal and build up plasma on them. Again, these are very important.|
|Devour||Not a verb, but deserves a place on this list. Get an aggressive grab on someone, then click on yourself. The victim takes oxygen and brute damage, make sure you don't kill him before you're able to infect him. Dead mobs are absorbed, and can't be regurgitated.|
|Regurgitate||Takes no plasma, and expels anyone you have devoured from your stomach. You can devour people by grabbing them aggressively and then clicking on yourself, though it takes a while.|
|Secrete Resin||Takes (55 or 80) plasma and allows you to spawn a resin wall, door, or nest where you're standing. Doors separating the hive from crew while being weaker, walls are stronger and blocks light. Nest are essentially beds with a very long unbuckle delay that only aliens can buckle mobs to.|
|Spit neurotoxin||Takes (50) plasma and has a 5 second cooldown. Fires a projectile in the direction you're facing. Anyone hit by the projectile takes 40 stamina damage, 5 brute damage, and is knocked down for 10 seconds.|
|Toggle night vision||When activated allows the xenomorph to see in darkness. Effect is similar to night vision goggles effect.|
|Transfer plasma||Allows you to transfer an amount of plasma to another alien, as long as you're adjacent to them.|
|Whisper||Takes (10) plasma and sends a telepathic message to the selected person.|
- Let's get this out of the way. First, you can caress anyone with your scythe-like arm by clicking on them an empty hand, with the Help intent active, while they're next to you. This has absolutely no effect outside of the normal help intent effects.
- You're a queen. Awesome. You get some nifty bonuses and defects compared to regular aliens. Let's go over them.
- Cons: You are slow. Snail's pace. You also can't vent crawl. You basically have zero mobility compared to everything else in the game. You can be pulled by a faster cast member if you need to get somewhere, however. You also stand out with a unique sprite.
- Pros: You can lay eggs, you build plasma much faster, and you have more health.
- Your first task is to lay an egg. You start with 250 plasma even though you needed 500 to evolve, and you'll build more very quickly.
- If at any point in time you have plasma built up and don't know what to do with it, lay another egg. Laying more eggs increases the facehugger swarm and is your best weapon against the humans.
- Use a facehugger on a victim to start the impregnation process. Throwing the hugger at them will also work. Make sure they have no helmet to block the facehugger.
- You can open any door that isn't ID locked, but locked and/or bolted doors require that you spit corrosive acid on them. Corrosive acid is your all-access pass to the station. If you're stuck for any reason, or want to get in somewhere (example, rooms with monkeys or plasma tanks), use acid. It takes a while to eat through doors usually, so spit early and lay eggs while you wait.
- Alone, aliens are weak, and a queen even more so. One lucky assistant with a toolbox to the head can end your infestation very quickly, so don't let it happen. Always lay low and keep a wall of eggs and facehuggers between you and anywhere humans can get at you from.
- Remember to spit Neurotoxin on those who get too close (use your alien tab). This should knock them down for long enough to let you get away.
- You can take items off humans, though knowing exactly what they all do is rather metagamey, so be responsible.
- Drag anyone you incapacitate back towards the heart of your hive. Make sure that when they get back up, a facehugger will be within jumping range. Once they're impregnated, feel free to drag them to some dark corner and protect them until they explode into a new alien baby.
- Monkeys/other carbon humanoids are viable facehugger targets, and are a fantastic way to rapidly expand the size of your brood without needing to hunt down humans. From a meta standpoint, they also let more players into the game without killing anyone, so it gets more ghosts back to playing, which is always good.
- Once you've amassed an army of facehuggers, and hopefully ambushed a couple of unsuspecting crew who were unfortunate enough to stumble on your nest, you should communicate closely with the other aliens and prepare to start really branching out across the station. You've already started this, probably, especially since the other alien players are probably being more aggressive than you.
- You do not need air to breathe, or care for the cold as a Xenomorph! Feel free to walk around the outside of the station and make a good safe area to plant weeds and store plasma on (i.e., the solars, or toxins test area if no one is bombing or has bombed it). You can also spit acid on windows/grills to destroy them, so any window is a potential entry point. If you get spaced you're usually out of luck, though!
- You can see in the dark, and humans can't. Destroying light sources may be useful.
- You can also pick up anything medium sized or larger, such as boxes and backpacks.
As a Human
- Try to keep yourself and others around you calm. It's no good running around screaming and getting massacred by Xenos.
- Roleplay is still in effect, regardless of the large alien monstrosities. Try to keep in Character.
- If someone gets infested, make sure they get medical care ASAP. Surgery can remove a xenomorph Larva, but if they sucumb to the infection, other methods of revival may be required.
- If no other option is available, isolating the infected in a room without or welded vents will help stop the spread of xenomorphs.
They're everywhere! What now?
If all other options have failed, combat may be the only option.
- Try to at the very least declare red alert. This will keep people alert, and may get you access to the Emergency Response Team.
- Lasers and bullets work on Xenomorphs, however, they also work on people. Keep your firing lanes clear!
- Xenomorphs take increased burn damage, lasers are generally more effective against the alien menace.
- Melee weapons are not recommended unless you're in groups. A single Xenomorph can tackle you and then have enough time to put a facehugger on you or kill you.
- To avoid increasing Xeno numbers, destroying useless carbon mobs may be useful.
- Restrain individuals who wish to spread the infection or are helping hostile xenomorphs.
- Fighting xenomorphs head on is a bad idea, an alien can easily overtake one or multiple people.
- Larva should be killed if possible, or at the very least cuffed and arrested.
- Welding vents restrict Xenomorph mobility.
- Build and use combat mechs (Such as a Durand and a Gygax) to increase effectiveness against a crowd of Xenos.
- Fire eats xenomorphs alive, they lack effective ways to put themselves out.
- Seriously consider calling the escape shuttle if things get rough. Be aware that at times admins will send it back under the context of "Destroy the menace before calling for the shuttle, as you will spread the infection."
I'm the only one left!
- Make sure you're the only one left. Use radios, intercoms, or PDA messages to contact any potential survivors.
- If you have weapons, use them. Don't use them to hunt them however.
- If you see a mech, use it! If it's DNA-locked, then find another way.
- Make your way to the bridge or the captain's quarters and try to call the shuttle. It's the only way out now.
- If the shuttle is here, get on it, weld the doors shut, make sure nothing is in there with you, and hide as best you can. Central Command has a plan for this sort of thing.
- If you are eaten alive by xenos, there's only one way out. Take out your oxygen bottle or any other weapon in your hand, and move around as much as possible. You'll slam the thing you're holding into the alien's stomach lining, and if you do it enough you may explode out of the aliens chest cavity like some kind of reverse-larvae. Sharp implements work best.
- If the shuttle isn't coming, write a book of warning and contempt and throw yourself into space. Alternatively find a corner to cry in.
A parasitic cycle in xenomorph production with the appearance of two human hands held together and attached to a spiny, powerful tail. It has a proboscis it uses to implant embryos and provide oxygen while strangling a victim. The finger-like appendages are used for transportation and to attach itself firmly to a host body.
Once implantation is complete, the facehugger falls off and dies. Removal of a facehugger while it is copulating is always fatal for the victim, either because of a snapped neck, trauma from the facehugger ripping off the face of its victim, or the powerfully acidic blood of the xeno.
Victims rarely remember implantation or even the act of being jumped in most cases, likely because of the asphyxiation caused by a facehugger's tail during the process and the psychological trauma of the act. ((Ahahah, no. If you "RP" this, you are a horrible person.))
Like all of the xenomorph species, not much is understood about its growth, motivations, or senses, but it is known that a facehugger can tell the difference between a living humanoid and a non-living humanoid such as corpses or cyborgs and that they are suicidally focused on reproduction. Xenomorphs often use crowds of facehuggers to take down large prey or grouped or well-defended humans.
Also known as chestbursters because of their method of exodus from the host body, larval xenomorphs are the third known stage in reproduction for that species. While developing in the body, xenomorph embryos attach to blood vessels to absorb nutrients and complete its unstable genetic structure using the host's DNA.
Through an unknown process, this always results in a functioning offspring. This form is small compared to the adult, limbless, and serpentine. They have a strong instinct to hide after forcing their way out through the ribcage and violently tearing their host body apart. If left alone, xenomorph larva will undergo an unknown transformation process to adulthood.
It is believed at this stage that the xenomorph is at its most vulnerable due to its small size and apparent lack of many senses, though this should not be misunderstood—a larva is still deadly. Its powerful thrashing and sharp teeth got it out of a human sternum, after all.
This form is usually the last in any given xenomorph's life cycle. There are many variants of the hunter (including forms that do no hunting, per se), but the human form is the most commonly seen on stations for obvious reasons.
The hunter sports a phallic-shaped skull with hidden, mostly useless eyes protected by a one-way transparent dome. It has a host of esoteric senses, most prominently a theorized echolocation (explaining their near-constant hissing) and electroreception, though its primary sense appears to be smell. The scent of pheromones is experimentally shown to be the primary communication device of xenomorphs, most effectively transmitted by the ropey purple weeds the adults spread around the station. It is unknown where this tissue comes from, as xenomorphs refuse to make it in captivity.
The primary byproduct of this weed is the strange substance plasma and as such most corporations are extremely interested in the connection between the xenomorphs and that chemical for production reasons. Like the facehugger, the hunter's blood is highly acidic, and there are rumors that it is capable of eating even through space station hulls, though it must be said that this is only a rumor.
The adult xenomorph is a living weapon, with an exoskeleton thick enough to absorb or redirect most trauma and temperature extremes, scythe-like claws, and a multi-tiered jaw system capable of projecting an acidic compound presumingly from their stomachs. Some varieties of hunter are crested, and most varieties have a heavy tail with protective ridges. Xenomorphs at this stage show semi-sapience and problem-solving abilities, and are capable of using pack-oriented tactics, creative stealth, and psychological manipulation. It is reported that in the presence of enough plasma xenomorphs can communicate in a basic way with sentient species, but there is little evidence to lend credence to such an absurd notion.
Very few xenomorphs undergo the transformation into queen. It appears to be done only in the case of very specific hive pressures. They are the only xenomorphs capable of laying the eggs that hatch facehuggers. While much larger than the hunters, they're also much slower, but are indeed much tougher. Even accounting for the size difference, a xenomorph queen can take drastically more punishment. A queen is most likely found where there are high levels of plasma, surrounded by hunters and swarms of freshly hatched facehuggers.
They are significantly more intelligent and highly protective of their offspring. While slow, they have all the adaptations and weapons of their previous hunter forms, a larger, thicker crest to protect their brain casing, and higher internal stores of plasma which they can utilize for the shaping of resin, the laying of eggs, destructive survival defences, and even a complex and poorly understood efficient means to form a natural cloak. Like all xenomorphs, there is little information about them.
- You can perform CPR on any Xeno as a human, but they have to be under -50% HP and have suffocation damage for it to work.
- Below 0% HP , aliens will gasp, but not take suffocation damage. Below -50% HP, they'll pass
- Regular Aliens can't understand humans, and humans can't understand aliens. A pAI with a universal translator can talk to them, and a Queen is able to converse normally. Regular aliens can whisper into a humans head to talk to them.
- NPC Aliens will treat player xenomorphs as hostile. They will not do melee damage but any type with range will fire at the player.