Generators for spaceships and aliens, star-systems and planets, plots and tech. For your game in the future or a galaxy far, far away...
[First Published Jan 2019] Disclaimer: I'm an affiliate for DriveThru RPG
Sci-Fi Starting Points
Science fiction games range from old school of Traveller to the more recent Mothership RPG or an option in flexible systems such as Savage Worlds. Then there are quirky universes such as Warhammer 40K and science-fantasy such as Starfinder and Star Wars.
Then SciFi ideas.com is full of generators, inspiration and ideas for everything Science Fiction related...
There are also more futuristic tools articles on Rand Roll.
PDFs for Science Fiction
If you like pdfs and random tables then the following are taken from the Full PDF Guide for Science Fiction.
- Dicegeeks has The Book of Random Tables: Science Fiction and The Book of Random Tables: Science Fiction 2 have many d100 tables. There is a more focused one on Sci-Fi Facilities
- The Sci-fi Bundle Collection has several pdf tables for alien race names, rumours and starship names.
- Ennead Games has Space & Sci-Fi Encounter Concepts using two 2d100 tables for a quick encounter. Has two similar pdfs for SciFi objects and Space Vehicles
Cotterr-499: Exploration Robot. Cotterr-499 has a tracked chassis and a pair of heavy arms, and is equipped with various sensors and survey tools. It is programmed to be courteous and inquisitive.
...from Space NPC generator at donjon.
Every game starts with characters, and a name can make or break a character. The Sci-Fi Character Name Generator from Sci-Fi Ideas is a place to start.
For space pets there is a Pet Alien Name Generator from Fantasy Name Generators or a small selection of Space Pets at Chartopia. For something bizarre then the Random Robot Generator from Springhole might make a suitable companion.
Name: UFS Summertime. Type: Mid-sized dreadnought. Weapons: kiloproton canons, Defence: V2 Photon anti-attack fighters. Condition: Leaking plasma gas from a damaged hull section
...from Starship Generator at SciFiIdeas.com.
Spaceships will be used for transport, space battles, daring escapes and to define some characters. Adding to the tool above you can get a general description or a little more depth. And then there is a Spaceship Generator with descriptions like "This moderate-sized ship is shaped vaguely like a frog with spoilers"
Over at Role Generator there is an awesome Spaceship Generator which includes a deck map layout.
The Frugal Autochef Randomizer is created at Perchance, giving cuisines you might not enjoy on a commercialised starship journey.
Aliens and Space Monsters
Teyincer. Appearance - A familiar quadruped with a peacock head covered with bony ridges. It has the body of a dragon, dragon wings, a dolphin tail, four medium-length ostrich legs and broad, round feet. The Teyincer's body is covered in delicate feathers, while its front is covered in snake scales. It is completely blue.
...first part of a detailed Species Generator from RanGen.co.uk. Contains more information on stats, family life and general information.
Aliens and space monsters fill space games, sharing societies, providing trading partners, galactic enemies and cosmic hazards.
Stars and Systems
"A monolithic ship, nearly as black as the space around it, suddenly appears out of warp and hails the party in a strange language. The design is unlike anything the party has ever seen. They don’t seem hostile…"
...from 75 sci-fi encounters at DnD Speak
Stars and the systems they inhabit are the cities and nations of the space world, providing place of interest to explore.
For a quick map here is a Sector Generator which also gives basics of worlds, npcs, corporations and more using a system from Stars Without Number. There is an alternative SWN Sector Generator at Emichron.
Fuzzwork has a Star Map Generator which shows constellations (and no more info)
There is a Planets and Star System Generator at Role Generator which has a useful option for forcing a habitable world.
"The planet Mondas, which is a name which is still disputed, is an ice planet in a fairly large solar system with twelve other planets. Mondas is about 1.5 times bigger than Earth and its gravity is about 0.63 times that of Earth. A single day lasts 48.23 hours and a year lasts 129 days. The planet is made up of 13 continents, which make up 35% of the planet's landmass. 3 moon(s) orbit the planet and Mondas itself orbits a white sun in anarrow, elliptic orbit. Obviously this planet cannot sustain life, the conditions on this planet are far too violent and..."
...from planet descriptions at Fantasy Name Generators
Planets in science fiction act as home worlds for characters and civilisations, mysterious places to explore and points of reference throughout the galaxy.
There is also an older Planet Map Generator with lots of options and biome legends.
Last is my favourite planet Generator with choices including Earth Like, Water World, Frozen Planet and No Atmosphere.
Plots and Quests
"After doing battle with an enemy spaceship in a remote star system, the ESS Lone Star crash-lands on a planet with no atmosphere. When the surviving crew scout the area around the crash site, they are surprised to discover that the enemy vessel has also crashed. The two crews will have to work together if they are to survive."
From the sci-fi story idea generator at SciFi Ideas
Sci-Fi plots span from a couple of characters to intergalactic conspiracies. They might include robots, time-travel, aliens or new branches of science.
The Space Hulk Generator by LordFckHelmchen has maps for Wrath and Glory adventures set on massive ship-dungeons in space.
The Space and Sci-fi One Shots at Chaos Gen (one of mine) creates adventures suitable for a few hours play but which might spiral out of control into something longer.
Tech and Robots
Welcome to Zinki's Spacefood Restaurant. All the food on our menu is randomly generated. Starters - Klorgian Vegetable Soup…..5.60c, Jawadan Fruit Soup…..6.50c, Creamed Altusian Pinefruit…..6.50c. Main Courses - Smoked Arethusan Snorkelfish with Cardeveran Pulse-Beans…..6.99c...
... from an alien restaurant menu at Obscure Hub
There is a decent robot generator from Springhole.net
Iron Arachne has an Arms Manufacture Generator with models of weapons