Skinning Mazes & Perils for Space?

Not sure if it was the lack of sleep last night or a wild hair, but I had a crazy idea. Vince has been working off and on on the Space Lords of Venus idea, which has a particular spin on M&P for a “space pulp” kind of setting. And I dig that kind of John Carter of Mars take on things. But for some reason I was pondering doing something with space marines in an Aliens kind of environment.

So here’s a rough outline for how it might work…

A Space Marine is essentially a Fighter in this new system (let’s call it Aliens & Asteroids for now). A complement of space marines (let’s say 4) might have a laser rifle (d6/single shot or long range sniping capabilities or short/medium range 3-round burst capabilities), a pistol (d6/single shot), a laser honed k-bar knife (d6/melee), and a grenade (essentially a fireball 3d6 area affect). Each wears a suit of combat armor, which provides AC 5 (chain armor approximation).

Game over!

A squad of 4 beginning space marines may have d6 HP each per level.

Let’s say they are exploring an “abandoned” alien base on the moon as a 5-room dungeon.

  • First room has a robot turret to greet them in a hail of laser fire (d6 damage per shot, HD 2) in one room (a technician/thief may be able to disable any alarm and turret).
  • Second room is covered in a green slime (HD 1/2) that will begin to eat through any inorganic material (shoes, uniform, guns). A cold-emitting fire extinguisher can be used to kill enough slime and create a path through to the door on the other side. An alien corpse is sitting in a chair in front of a destroyed computer.
  • Third room is a hallway to an external airlock used to get to an escape vehicle. The airlock is wired to blow them out of the facility if they don’t have the right code (again, a technician/thief may be able to bypass).
  • Fourth room houses a squad of 1d6 alien bodyguards left playing a game while they protect the secrets of the alien race. Each alien (HD 1) is wearing a tactical suit (AC 7, leather equivalent) and carrying a laser pistol (d6/short range) along with a laser sword (d6/melee). They are ordered to stop any invaders from acquiring the data in the last room.
  • Fifth room contains an alien computer with research pertaining to the slime in room two. The base was established in a place to safely investigate this extra-solar life form and it got loose but was contained to the front room.

I think this could work as a scenario using M&P rules in a completely different genre. A cleric would be a medic. A magic-user would be a scientist. A thief would be a tech. And you could have a whole campaign based around alien invaders along the lines of X-COM.

What do you think? Is this worth pursuing further?

I’ve done a little more work and added it to the wiki I’ve started. You can easily get to it at I think it could be a blast and am definitely interested if you have ideas to contribute!

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1 thought on “Skinning Mazes & Perils for Space?”

  1. I think this is a great idea! I love the idea of reskinning the basics for other genres, and I really like that this has the space marine focus to keep it from becoming just another OSR space opera game. I’ll look forward to seeing if you expand this!

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