The galaxy teems with species and civilizations of a bewildering variety. We humans often make the mistake of dismissing an entire species as “All Sullustans behave this way… “or “All Twi’leks think like that… “And while sometimes such statements may be accurate, I would caution one traveling into space that every member of an alien species is unique from every other, just as every human is in some ways different from any other. Individuality is not merely a human trait, my friends. In this section, you will find an overview of some of the species to be found in the galaxy. While the Empire has for the most part chosen to ignore the significant contributions these aliens can make to galactic society, the Rebellion has embraced their diversity and profited from it. Given time, you may find you do so as well.
Aliens in the Galaxy
Although humans have long dominated the Known Galaxy, there are thousands of known intelligent alien species. Many of these species can be encountered almost anywhere.
Emperor Palpatine ruled through fear and manipulation. Part of his “New Order” plan was clearly weighted heavily in favor of humans, and relegated most alien species to the role of second-class citizens. Very few aliens were allowed to serve in the Imperial forces, although, a few aliens — such as Grand Admiral Thrawn — did achieve positions of great power.
If adventures are set in the time period of the Empire (during the Star Wars movies), aliens will often be at a disadvantage when dealing with Imperial troops and even many of the “average” humans of the galaxy. The degree of prejudice depends on the individual, the alien species and what
the general temperament of that section of the galaxy is (some governors maintained power by whipping the masses into an anti-alien frenzy).
If adventures are set in the time period of the New Republic, aliens face less prejudice, although it still exists; it is simply no longer fashionable. The New Republic, which found great support from aliens during the civil war, has welcomed most aliens as equals. Now, however, many aliens are exhibiting a great degree of anger towards humans—the pent-up frustration born of decades of discrimination.
A Note on Race and Species
Many people in the galaxy use the word “race” when referring to various aliens. While this usage is common, it is also incorrect. The proper term for each alien is “species,” as “race” is a term used to denote different sub-groups of a particular species, distinguished by different physical characteristics.
This distinction is an important one because, like humans, many alien species have a number of races.
Each species description is followed by game information. Here’s what the various categories represent:
Average Alien: These are the attributes and the Move for an “average” member of the species. This information is provided in “paragraph form,” and lists
only very basic information. This entry is a quick reference for gamemasters who may need to use an alien character “on the fly” in a roleplaying session.
Attribute Dice: This is the number of attribute dice for an “average” member of the species. Most gamemaster characters will have this total number of
attribute dice. Player characters and some gamemaster characters get six additional attribute dice.
Attribute Die Ranges: Each species has a separate listing for each attribute (Dexterity, Knowledge, Mechanical, Perception, Strength and Technical). Except in a small number of cases, members of that species may not have an attribute listing lower than the first number (the minimum) or higher than the second number (the maximum). With experience, characters can invest Character Points to increase their attributes above the maximum.
Special Skills: A listing of any unique or very specialized skills which are common to that species. The skill listing also notes the attribute that the skill is
associated with. In general, anyone can learn a special skill provided they receive proper instruction.
Special Abilities: Some aliens have special abilities which are only available to a particular species. These are generally physiological traits (claws, tails, sharp teeth, and so forth) and cannot be “learned” by members of a different species.
Story Factors: Story factors affect most, if not all, members of a given species. Story factors include notes on the alien’s culture, life cycle or beliefs other
people hold about the species in general. These story factors can be used as an aid for both the player and gamemaster (and canny gamemasters can often spin these factors into an ongoing Star Wars adventure).
Move: The minimum starting Move for an average character (as well as a player character), and then the maximum Move for a member of that species. If the species has two or more prime modes of movement, all will be listed. All beginning characters start with the first number under “Move.” The second number is the species’ maximum move.
Size: The common or average height range for adult members of the species. For rules on creating an alien player character, turn back to the section “Creating a New Template” in Chapter One, “Characters.”