Santicorn: Mothership Culture Tables

Merry Christmas! This is for the Throne of Salt blog.

Image result for boot void
Space is a weird place for weird people.

Roll 1d12 for Unexpected Core Cultures to run into while traversing the greater cosmos. The reason for these cultures is kept purposefully vague or non-existent.

Unexpected Core Cultures
  1. Comet Cannibals. In a hollow comet, they live in cryostasis. When water-starved ships come to harvest, they awaken, kill them, take their food and weapons, and return to their frozen sleeps. 
  2. Organic Soup Sea Eaters. On a planet of oily black stone, there is no water, only a sea of organic soup. The colony here has forgotten what water was, and if you arrive with foodstuffs they will steal it and throw it into their seas to further enrich them.
  3. Punk Rock Ring Miners. These ring-miners, stuck in the drab and dreary block-barracks, have taken to graffiti and punk rock music to inject high octane energy into their daily lives. Pink mohawks and fat gages are signs of maturity.
  4. Techno-Guiding Stories. This colony lost access to their recording technology generations ago. They encode important information about their origins, their mission, and their hidden resources in stories they pass down from generation to generation.
  5. Void Children. A colony born and raised as an experiment in the heart of a great void has forgotten what the sun or even starlight looks is. They treat tails of galaxies from far away as myths, and are distrustful of outsiders who yield from the great black.
  6. Aurora Sun Worshippers. The magnetic poles of this colony world are unpredictable, and the sun too far away to provide usable light. Thus, the aurora takes the place of the sun for them, and everything is stark white to better reflect those sacred colors.
  7. Moon Tribe Marriage. With only 20 people per moon-colony, these people send their children away to find lovers and bring them back, so that incest does not taint their gene pool.
  8. Congress of Water Filters. Inside the oort cloud, great respect is given to those who dedicate their lives to filtering water from the void of space. These people live as hermits, and their words are treated as laws.
  9. Those Dyed by Creation. Inside great pillars of cosmic gas, the color of things is ever-changing. It dyes skin and hair alike; those who brave the cosmos long enough, and thus return the most flamboyantly dyed, are treated as princes.
  10. A.I. This cabal of A.I have created their own gibberous language that only they can understand. They prioritize communication with the universe beyond the cosmic horizon. They recieve answers that they too can only understand.
  11. Exile by Meteor. Exiles are put into pods and bound to asteroids in a nearby asteroid belt, which is then fired into deep space. If one returns, they are considered Prime Alpha by the colony, and allowed to spend 1 year doing as they please.
  12. City of the Black Horizon. Just within the event horizon of a supermassive black hole is a city outside of time. The people here travel into the depths of the black hole, from which only a few have returned taller, without eyes, and unable to speak in any language except one other returners understand. These individuals are saints, and the ground they walk is kissed, and the arts they make used to decipher laws.

Now roll 1d6 for the state of the culture.
  1. Flourishing. It has spread to other parts of the cosmos, and a civilization is blooming that adheres to these strange tenets.
  2. Dying. They are the last of their kind, and are desperate to impart their ways--forcibly, if needed--onto others.
  3. Developing. There are currently massive changes on the precipice for this culture. Roll again on the above table; within 1d12 months, the current culture will somehow shift to the next.
  4. Artificial. It is clear this culture is the result of some experiment. Roll any other dice; odds say that the experimenter is still monitoring, and even says they are long dead.
  5. Wrong. The culture rolled is nothing but tall-tales exaggerated. Reroll on the above table; the new result is the actual culture.
  6. Syncratic. The culture absorbs other cultures. Reroll twice on the table above, and take two ideas from both ideas and insert them into the originally rolled culture.
Now roll 1d8 for a defining strange law followed by the culture.
  1. Lying is punished by replacing the fingernails with chips of metal that dig into the flesh painfully.
  2. Murder is allowed so long as a third party states that the victim did not suffer.
  3. Speaking, looking at, or otherwise acknowledging children younger than 10 cycles is punished with removal of a number of teeth equal to the age of the child.
  4. Seeing another naked requires one to stitch one eye shut for 72 hours. 
  5. Artificial Intelligence is banned. If witnessed, not only must it be destroyed, but everyone who witnessed it must commit ritual suicide.
  6. Knowing one's biological parents is illegal. Discovery or intent to investigate is punished with immediate exile.
  7. Alien life is considered the only suitable partner for sexual relations for purposes other than strict procreation. Failure to adhere to this results in severe genital mutilation.
  8. Outsiders must never enter, and those born inside must never leave, lest disease destroy both parties. Trading is accomplished through extensive decontamination processes.
Lastly, choose 2 objects: one of your choice, and a second found by googling one of the following 1d4 words:
  1. Religion.
  2. Chimera.
  3. Abandoned.
  4. Sacrifice.
Related image
If this pic is the kind of weird you wanted, I'll make a sequel post.

So an example culture is:

This colony lives on a world covered in vast organic seas which they consume in the absence of water and food. They've grown distrustful of "alien" nutrition and will steal what you have and destroy it or feed it to their slop-seas. It is clear that this is an experiment that's gone on too long, but it is likely the originator of this experiment is long-dead. Interacting with children younger than 10 is grounds for removal of teeth, for these children have not yet supped on the seas long enough to be considered truly human. Their symbol is a lamp drowning in jars of stagnant fluid, representing how great their world has made them intellectually--or so they believe.