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Template Grafts | Universal Monster Rules

Stellar Protozoa

Source Alien Archive 2 pg. 120

Stellar Protozoa Tier 7

N Huge starship vermin
Speed 8; Maneuverability poor (turn 3); Drift
AC 19; TL 19
HP 180; DT 5; CT 36
Shields medium 90 (forward 24, port 22, starboard 22, aft 22)
Attack (Forward) stellar membrane (2d4 plus swallow starship), light cytoplasm launcher (4d6)
Attack (Aft) particle beam (8d6)
Attack (Turret) heavy cytoplasm launcher (6d8)
Power Core stellar protozoa nucleus (250 PCU); Drift Engine none; Systems mk 4 armor, mk 5 defenses; Expansion Bays none;
Other Abilities biotic weapons, draining aura, living starship, void adaptation

Crew Actions

Engineer (1 action) Engineering +15 (7 ranks)
Gunner (1 action) gunnery +12 (7th level)
Pilot (1 action) +18 (7 ranks)


Environment any vacuum
Organization solitary, pair, or swarm (3–6)

Special Abilities

Biotic Weapons (Ex) A stellar protozoa’s flexible body grants its particle beam the broad arc special property. See the Starship Weapons page for cytoplasm weapons.

Draining Aura (Su) A power core within 5 hexes of a stellar protozoa at the start of a round produces 10 fewer PCUs; this might force some starship systems, as determined by the crew, to become inactive. These reduced PCUs are restored when the stellar protozoa is disabled or when the power core is no longer within 20 hexes of the stellar protozoa. Any creature within 5 hexes of a stellar protozoa at the start of a round gains a temporary negative level unless it succeeds at a DC 15 Fortitude saving throw. The stellar protozoa gains no temporary HP for draining levels. A creature that successfully saves cannot be affected again by the same stellar protozoa’s draining aura for 24 hours. These negative levels are removed if the stellar protozoa is disabled or when the affected creature is no longer within 20 hexes of the protozoa. Stellar protozoans are immune to this ability.

Living Starship (Ex) A stellar protozoa is a living creature so immense that it functions as a starship (and thus engages only in starship combat). It has no crew, but it can still take engineer, gunner, and pilot actions using the skill bonuses, ranks, and level listed in Crew Actions above. Modifiers for its size, speed, and maneuverability are already factored into its statistics. Use the following table to determine the effects when a stellar protozoa takes critical damage.

1–10Aura generatorWhile this system has critical damage, the stellar protozoa cannot drain PCUs or impose negative levels with its draining aura. If this system is wrecked, PCU reductions and negative levels the aura imposed are immediately restored.
11–40Weapons arrayRandomly determine one arc containing weapons; condition applies to gunner actions using weapons in that arc.
41–70PropulsionCondition applies to pilot actions
71–100NucleusCondition applies to engineer actions except hold it together and patch.

Stellar Membrane (Ex) A stellar protozoa can make a stellar membrane attack against only a Large or smaller starship that is in its forward firing arc and in a hex adjacent to the stellar protozoa.

Swallow Starship (Ex) If a stellar protozoa’s stellar membrane attack deals Hull Point damage to a target, that vessel is pulled into the stellar protozoa’s body. The protozoa can hold one Large ship, two Medium ships, four Small ships, or eight Tiny ships. A vessel takes 4d4 damage each time it starts a round of starship combat inside the stellar protozoa (divide this damage equally across all arcs, starting with the forward arc and proceeding clockwise). A swallowed starship can still attack, and the protozoa’s interior has AC 14, TL 14, and DT 0. However, at such close range, starship weapons deal half their damage to the firing ship through a combination of blowback and the protozoa’s physical reactions. If a swallowed starship deals 20 Hull Points to the protozoa’s interior, the ship blows a hole in the creature big enough to attempt to fly through. During the helm phase, the pilot of a swallowed starship can attempt to fly free with a Piloting check (DC 20, or DC 25 if the protozoa has no hole in it). On a failure, the starship remains within the protozoa.


Stellar protozoans are single-celled organisms larger than some space stations. Mindless and voracious, these creatures move through space draining energy and consuming matter.

A stellar protozoa has thin flagella that wave erratically. These flagella serve as a sensing mechanism, keeping the protozoa apprised of nearby objects. The strands also focus the protozoafs biological energy, erecting energy shields and discharging particle beams. Floating in the center of a stellar protozoa is a massive nucleus. This nucleus is a rudimentary brain, communicating through the viscous cytoplasm inside the protozoa. When a stellar protozoa is in danger, the nucleus coordinates its movements, shields, and particle beams. In addition, the nucleus can energize knots of cytoplasm and eject them through temporary gaps in the creaturefs tough exterior.

Stellar protozoans also produce a supernatural field that drains nearby energy. Within this field, starships lose power, living creatures weaken, and rotating bodies slow, their energy drawn away. This field has no effect on stellar protozoans but can eventually kill other living creatures and drain power sources.

This stolen energy is sufficient to sustain stellar protozoans indefinitely, but the creatures draw more nourishment from matter. When a stellar protozoa contacts a source of food. which is anything smaller than it surrounds the object and begins breaking it down with corrosive cytoplasm. material, such as that found in starship power cores, provides it with the most substantive nutrition.

When a stellar protozoa absorbs sufficient food, its nucleus grows and splits in two, dividing the protozoa into two smaller creatures. In an area that has sufficient food, the protozoans can divide rapidly enough to overwhelm the region.

Stellar protozoans instinctively avoid gravity wells and donft venture near stars or planets.a tendency that canny pilots can use to escape the creaturesf attention. Although a stellar protozoa isnft capable of entering or exiting the Drift on its own, travelers have spotted the creatures floating in Drift space, likely unable to leave after being pulled into the extraplanar realm by some other force.

Cytoplasm Weapons

Daring bioengineers can recover cytoplasm from a destroyed stellar protozoa and fashion it into a starship weapon, using a starship’s computers to simulate the nucleus’s commands to the amorphous goo. If the PCs defeat a protozoa, a successful DC 20 Life Science check allows them to salvage enough cytoplasm to add either the light or heavy cytoplasm launcher to a starship when the group has the Build Points available. The GM can also make these weapons available on the open market.