Advanced Search

Alternity Core Rulebook
Quick Preview
Full‑size Preview

Alternity Core Rulebook

Watermarked PDF

Strange new worlds and deadly aliens? Mercenaries for hire? Post-apocalyptic survival? Explore your favorite visions of sci-fi adventure in the new Alternity Science Fiction Roleplaying Game from Sasquatch Game Studio. Alternity is a sci-fi roleplaying game system suitable for a wide range of genres. Designed with modularity in mind, Alternity campaigns can be set across the spectrum of sci-fi genres: from hard sci-fi to space opera, or post-apocalyptic wastelands to alien conspiracies.

The Alternity Core Rulebook features a modular toolkit that you can use to build great characters and adventures in your favorite sci-fi universe—or in a universe of your own creation. It starts with the Alterntiy Core Rulebook, which covers character creation, futuristic technology, and adventure design, and includes a selection of dangerous aliens and villainous adversaries, as well as guidelines for building the universe that you want to run. Inside you'll find:

  • Six species, seven archetypes, skills, and special talents to build your science fiction hero.
  • A fast-paced combat system perfect for bringing cinematic action scenes to life.
  • All the hazards, set-pieces, and adversaries a game master needs to create sci-fi adventures.
  • Campaign design guidance, discussing genres and tech levels.
  • Dozens of ready to use adversaries, and quick rules to make your own.
  • And much more!
If you want to take a look at the rules, check out the free Alternity Quickstart Guide in the Alternity Demo Pack.
The Alternity Core Rulebook is the first product in the Alternity line, and upcoming releases will add even more options to your Alternity game. Be on the lookout for:
  • Protostar Mission Guide: An introduction to the hard sci-fi Protostar campaign setting with a series of adventures that explore the worlds beyond the wormholes of the Protostar Nexus. In the 23rd century, governments and corporations vie for control of the corridors between our solar system and the resources of the worlds beyond the gates.
  • The Shipyard: Starships for all tech eras, with rules for crafting ships and building characters to pilot them.
  • Xenologist's Guide: Even more adversaries and aliens to populate your campaign and antagonize your heroes. Plus rules for building PC species and expanded rules for creature creation.
  • Dark Nebula Mission Guide: An adventure series set in the Dark Nebula campaign, a far-future setting in which slowly decaying, milennia-old empires clash while distant stars are being extinguished by some unknown force.
About Alternity: In 1997, Bill Slavicsek and Richard Baker created the original Alternity game - a tabletop RPG engine for science fiction adventure across a wide range of genres. Now, twenty years later, Richard and fellow Sasquatches David Noonan and Stephen Schubert have created a new sci-fi RPG inspired by the original game. We've rebuilt the game mechanics to take advantage of 20 years of advancement and experience in the art of game design. A crowdfunding success, the Alternity line includes a number of upcoming supplements: the starship focused Shipyard; more aliens and adversaries in the Xenologist's Guide; the campaign setting/adventure series of the Protostar Mission Guide; and more to come!
 Customers Who Bought this Title also Purchased
Reviews (0)
Discussions (14)
Customer avatar
Olaf B August 25, 2021 9:45 am UTC
So, still no POD option for the core book? Was it ever in print apart from the KS version? Anyone? Thanks.
Customer avatar
Sönke S September 16, 2020 9:47 pm UTC
Is this a ressurection of the old TSR Alternity or something completely different?
Customer avatar
Mark H September 16, 2020 10:49 pm UTC

It's a "revised" version, but if you expect any response from the company you need to be able to hold your breath forever as they do not seem to respond to anything said on this site.

I personally have considered it to have some improvements....I prefer the Initiative and Action "Clock" but to be honest they can be ported to the original with a bit of tweaking.
I did initially consider Psionics being based on Fatigue was better until I re-read the original rules and felt that there was little difference.
Customer avatar
Les W May 21, 2020 1:48 pm UTC
I've been using this system since it came out... and I have all the original content. All the setting material is easily usable - with the graded success levels you don't need 'stats' conversions and the like. The developers delivered on the promise of updating a great old system to me modern player's expectations while keeping Alternity, well, Alternity. There seem to be some very vocal distractors on this product line who look like they need to either go back to the original system (its still available in PDF forms) or move on to other systems. I was a kick-starter supporter and haven't been disappointed, rather the contrary. Play OTL, TV, and PbP players have all enjoyed the mechanics and ease of play - and we are just still scratching the surface of old and new setting materials.
Customer avatar
Scott M May 04, 2020 9:05 pm UTC
I adore this system. Minor quibble: the medium range distance is incorrect on the provided premium character sheets which can lead to some confusion.
Customer avatar
Robert R December 05, 2019 7:06 pm UTC
As of 12/05/19 Sasquatch Game Studio website reads that Alternity WILL launch in Q4 2017. WILL launch. Their blog updates only go to August of 18. Too bad. This system looks great. If you are there Sasquatch, please post something here. Let us know you are still supporting your products.
Customer avatar
Nathaniel B December 07, 2019 7:48 pm UTC
They don't even bother updating the backers more then once a Quarter, so I wouldn't hold my breath for anything appearing on the web site or a response here at any point.
Customer avatar
Timothy S November 06, 2019 8:18 pm UTC
I really like this version, but I do have a question about the mechanics. Why add your attribute and skill, and then subtract it from 20, to make high rolls successful. First edition, you just rolled lower than the skill total. That extra step, of subtracting from 20, seems like a pretty worthless step. Similar to how Monte Cook's Numenera has the GM assign a target number of 1-10 only to have the players triple it to find the true target number, that extra step in both these cases are a waste of time. Sure, it only takes a second to do the math, but why bother in the first place? In this new edition of Alternity, simply reverse the situation die negative/positive, and roll low just like first edition. No other changes need to happen. That's just my two cents, please let me know if you disagree.
Customer avatar
Nathaniel B December 07, 2019 7:49 pm UTC
I think they needed to make it needlessly complex just to try and pad the page count. After all there really isn't all that much content in this version.
Customer avatar
Les W May 21, 2020 1:56 pm UTC
That's an 'order of operations' thing and not complicated at all. All skill checks in the modern age are "roll over" (the old alternity was "roll under") I think the reason to 'flip the mechanic' was to make it easier for players of DnD 5e games and the like to transition over.
I had similar feelings about the old Initiative system and the Stress tracks. When I actually used the new system with RL players though, I saw that it better for them as new Alternity players as they 'got it' right away. I think us old Alternity players are the only ones that would struggle with that... heck, I'm still saying Marginal and Amazing!
Customer avatar
Patrick M February 11, 2019 7:26 pm UTC
I went to your website and saw the Voyager - Complete PDF Bundle for sale. Is that only available to Kickstarter backers? I doubt it since it let me add it to the cart. But it charged $8 for shipping & handling. For PDFs. Is that a glitch? If you could get back to me I'd appreciate it. Thank you.
Customer avatar
Nathaniel B June 29, 2019 6:03 pm UTC
If you get a response from this "company" I'll be surprised.
Customer avatar
Nate M September 17, 2018 4:01 am UTC
I am disappointed that there aren't any rules for ship vs ship combat in the core book. Considering the game's pedigree I'm surprised. When will the Shipyard book be coming?
Customer avatar
Bryce G September 01, 2018 5:26 pm UTC
I just picked up the hardback. The system is workable and the basic rules make it possible to run campaigns in several different settings. It will benefit from future world-books, however. There are a few sci-fi tropes that either aren’t covered or aren’t given a very deep treatment (Mecha, alternate dimensions, cybernetics). That’s to be expected, though, and overall, I am very happy with the product.
Customer avatar
Mark H August 18, 2018 12:20 pm UTC
I'm gradually going through the pdf, and to be honest the layout could be better...headings for a subject at the bottom of a page is the most obvious one atm.....that's after a brief perusal.
Customer avatar
Mark H August 18, 2018 10:09 am UTC
Will there be a Conversion Guide for previous Alternity characters, etc.?
Customer avatar
Daniel P August 13, 2018 2:40 am UTC
Any word or idea if there will be a dead tree version at some point? I dislike going purely digital if I have the choice but thoroughly loved the original Alternity back in the day.
Customer avatar
Thomas S August 13, 2018 8:51 pm UTC
I don't know if they plan to sell them through RPGNOW, but hardcovers already exist; some people got to buy them at GenCon, and they're on their way to those of us who Kickstartered the game for the most part.
Customer avatar
Matt H January 07, 2019 11:18 pm UTC
I was able to pick one up at the local game shop last week!
Customer avatar
Stephan A August 12, 2018 5:36 pm UTC
I bought this product on a whim, because I liked the original Alternity - owned every book of the line - and was curious.
As far as I can tell, it delivers on the designer's promise: To provide a modular game system that can be used for all sorts of science fiction. The mechanic is a polished version of the original Alternity, layout is easy on the eyes and the entire book is well written, providing hints and tips where you expect them and when you need them.
Artwork, while sparse, is of decent quality and does not get in the way.
Overall, a nice product and a good buy.
Customer avatar
VALENTINOS K November 25, 2018 2:45 pm UTC
how good would you say it is at running previous edition campaigns?

I have a suspicion this one has better mechanics but the older ones better lore and adventures...
Customer avatar
Joseph B August 11, 2018 2:28 am UTC
I'm a kickstarter backer and already love this book. The pages are good for people whom have a hard time to see due to near blindness and the system is polished compared to the old one.
Narrow Results
 Follow Your Favorites!
NotificationsSign in to get custom notifications of new products!
 Recent History

Product Information
Electrum seller
Rule System(s)
Publisher Stock #
File Size:
19.13 MB
Original electronic
Scanned image
These products were created by scanning an original printed edition. Most older books are in scanned image format because original digital layout files never existed or were no longer available from the publisher.

For PDF download editions, each page has been run through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to attempt to decipher the printed text. The result of this OCR process is placed invisibly behind the picture of each scanned page, to allow for text searching. However, any text in a given book set on a graphical background or in handwritten fonts would most likely not be picked up by the OCR software, and is therefore not searchable. Also, a few larger books may be resampled to fit into the system, and may not have this searchable text background.

For printed books, we have performed high-resolution scans of an original hardcopy of the book. We essentially digitally re-master the book. Unfortunately, the resulting quality of these books is not as high. It's the problem of making a copy of a copy. The text is fine for reading, but illustration work starts to run dark, pixellating and/or losing shades of grey. Moiré patterns may develop in photos. We mark clearly which print titles come from scanned image books so that you can make an informed purchase decision about the quality of what you will receive.
Original electronic format
These ebooks were created from the original electronic layout files, and therefore are fully text searchable. Also, their file size tends to be smaller than scanned image books. Most newer books are in the original electronic format. Both download and print editions of such books should be high quality.
File Information
Watermarked PDF
Watermarked PDF

These PDF files are digitally watermarked to signify that you are the owner. A small message is added to the bottom of each page of the PDF containing your name and the order number of your purchase.

Warning: If any files bearing your information are found being distributed illegally, then your account will be suspended and legal action may be taken against you.

Here is a sample of a page from a watermarked title:

File Last Updated:
November 27, 2019
This title was added to our catalog on August 10, 2018.
Sasquatch Game Studio
Publisher Average Rating