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Simple description:

Morphological Biology


Respiration system:


Nervous system:

Nutrition-intake organ/”mouth-analog”:

Nutrition process/”digestion”:


Biological support/”skeleton”:

Cellular morphology:

Reproduction and Life cycle:



Manipulation of environment:

Other biological characteristics:



Habitat & Environmental requirements:

Ecological niches and interactions:

Behaviour & Psychology:

Evolutionary background & History:

If you want to develop an elaborate alien, then this template might help you. It might not be a perfect one but I hope it is good enough. I will now explain how it can be used:

In "Simple Description", you can write down a short introduction describing what is special with whatever creature you are using this template for.

Under "Morphological Biology", you can add a description about the creatures body shape, what it looks like.

"Size". Your alien can be of any size! Your creature can be so small as a having bug size, being microscopic or even exist on the Planck scale (being mindboggingly tiny), or it could be so big as a mountain, planet, or it can even be cosmically huge.

In "Nutrition process/digestion", you describe how the creatures body deals with nutrients. If it doesn´t have a stomach and instead absorbs nutrients and uses photosynthesis like a plant, you can add in such metabolical oddities here.

"Cellular morphology". The alien can be just as alien on the microscopic level as it is on the macro scale. Here you write down how big the creatures cells are, how they are shaped and how that affects the alien on the macroscale. If the creature isn´t made of cells, you can describe it´s equivalents (if it has any) functions instead.

"Other biological characteristics". Here you describe biological quirks that doesn´t fit into any other category here. If you want to give your alien such things as hypnotic pimples or an pathogen-assimilating immune system, then add it here.

"Biochemistry". You can begin with the Basic Building Blocks (is your alien based on carbon, boron or superatoms), Solvent (does the alien drink water, sulfur or liquid hydrogen) and Respiratory Gas (does it use oxygen or hydrogen cyanide). You can also elaborate on such things as what kinds of amino acids and DNA-like structures your alien uses (perhaps your alien has diaminopurine instead of adenine in its DNA or maybe your alien doesn´t have DNA and instead have PNA). If you want something really outlandish, you can speculate wether if your alien is even biochemical and is instead based on different physical interactions (your alien could composed of crystal dislocations, spatial distortions or memetic processes).

"Communication". Beside describing what physical medium the alien uses (does it convey messages through burning coal, ocean waves or quantum entangling of minds), you can also add in psychological characteristics like: do the alien speech have more or less word classes then we do, or perhaps the language is spoken like a binary code.
I will also feed your inspiration by giving you a few exciting links to a few sites I have found, hope this will give you some great ideas.

Extraterrestrial energyzoa hypothesis

Could Life Survive Inside a Black Hole?

Life In The Sun: Magneto-Hydrodynamic Sentience

Science Friday: What Dreams May Come

Plasma/dust-based Life

Extrasolar Planets


National Geographic Channel: EXTRATERRESTRIAL

Disney's Mars & Beyond 5 of 6 - Life on Mars

Small overview of “Life in the universe expectations and constraints” (I recommend Chapter 9: Exotic Forms of Life)

Xenology An introduction to The Scientific Study of Extraterrestrial Life, Intelligence, and Civilization.

Wikipedias article about xenobiochemistry

Bizarre Alien Biology

Starfish Aliens

Our Monsters Are Weird (all examples there aren´t aliens but if you want imagine something really crazy, then heres your inspiration source.)

Bizarre Alien Psychology

Blue and Orange Morality (give examples of strange mindsets and unconventional moralities in both human and alien characters.)

Starfish Language


Me Human, You Alien: How to Talk to an Extraterrestrial

Scientific Model describing Alien Intelligence

Life-like cells are made of metal

NS 2744: The face of first contact: What aliens look like

Weird Worlds

A piece from “The Science Of Aliens”, describing the ”Diffuse Ones” and other neat things

Aliens from the computer game "Ascendancy" (Nothing science-based, just something that might still be fuel for the imagination)

Strange Encounters With Analog And Digital Life-Forms On Alien Worlds

Xenocytology and microbiology

Are Aliens among Us?
SporeWiki:Fiction Universe/Important topics/Exobiology
SF Exobiology Top Tropes (Afunny sit that lists many common "archetypes" of Alien depictions in sci-fi.)
Have fun!

Add a Comment:
Jakeukalane Featured By Owner May 24, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I will be using this. Thank you
sin-and-love Featured By Owner Oct 2, 2015
How the hell can something only a plank in size possibly display the characteristics of life? How could something of that size be anything other than a basic elementary particle, with no internal components?
Tektalox Featured By Owner Oct 7, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I like when people are curious enough to ask questions. And I´ll answer your question to the best of my ability:

I found that strange concept in "Schild´s Ladder" by Greg Egan. The novel describes another universe with different physics consuming our universe, and that new universe is inhabited by these Planck-scale creatures which are composed of warped space-time instead of actual matter.
sin-and-love Featured By Owner Oct 7, 2015
Just checked out the wikipedia article on it.  That's pretty cool.  What if our own universe has been doing that to some poor larger one?
RavingShark Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Sturdy and flawless design but it would tame a hell of a lot of time. Luckily I'm not unpatient. :)
Transapient Featured By Owner Mar 29, 2013
Nice template. (smile) It's quite a useful checklist for complete alien designs.

"Evolve and Grow." -- The Universe
OblivionJunkey94 Featured By Owner Mar 29, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
This looks usefull ill probly use this later
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