My Cosmic Encounter Aliens
aka “The Welbourn Powers”

In 1986, some of my friends and I came up with a handful of new alien powers for our games of Cosmic Encounter. Some powers worked; some didn’t. Now, years later, they are here on the web.

Update July 2017: Now that I have a scanner, I finally added the original artwork to this page.


You have the power to retaliate. Whenever you lose a base because of a Terrorist bomb, you may immediately explode a bomb on any base belonging to the Terrorist. All tokens on that base go to the warp. You may retaliate against any bomb in the game that loses you a base, whether set by Terrorist, an Insected-Terrorist, a Planted-Terrorist, Insected-American, and so on.

Use only in a game with Terrorist.

Note: I just want to state that this power wasn’t my idea.


You have the power of deafness. Once per challenge, you may, after an issued directive has been spoken against you, say “What?” and pretend not to hear. The player who issued the command may not try the same command against you this challenge, but if applicable, may issue a different command or command someone else. You may even ignore the Silencer. If you ignore a question from Seeker, he may not ask you another question that challenge.

Note: This silly and obviously anti-Silencer power is actually not bad at all, and it’s rather fun to play.


You have the power to manufacture. At the start of each of your challenges, you may add a new token to one of your bases from outside the game. The new token can be placed directly into the cone if you have no bases. Use tokens of a color not already in the game, or coins or other markers to represent the new tokens.

History: The Factory’s gift of instantaneous procreation was a blessing when many predators inhabited their planet. But recently the last predator died, leaving the Factorys with no room to expand. It’s only a matter of time before they helplessly smother the cosmos.

Note: As written, this power isn’t strong enough. Most games just don’t last long enough for the Factory’s new tokens to become a significant force to reckon with.


You have the power to float. If, between challenges, there is a system hex with an unoccupied planet, and where you also have a base with more than 2 tokens on it in that hex, you may immediately occupy the empty planet using one of the tokens on your original base. You do not need to play challenge cards to gain bases in this manner, and you can occupy as many planets as available as long as they are initially empty and you have sufficient tokens in that hex.

History: The ghosts escaped the slavery of their home planet and ventured into space. Distrustful of other beings, they prefer to hide in abandoned planets where they plot a rebellion in hopes to gain cosmic dominance.

Do not use with Unique System Hexes.

Note: I wanted a power that exploited empty planets; this was the result. I don’t remember it being used much.


You have the power of lunacy. Pull all moons in the game into your hex. Add an extra moon for good measure. You may make any of your challenges a moon challenge without turning the destiny pile first (if you are making a planetary challenge, flip destiny as usual). You may rearrange moons in your hex between challenges. If you lose your power, redistribute moons into hexes at random.

Use only in a game with Moons.

NOTE: I don’t remember that we ever used Lunatic; it’s kinda dumb, and our group rarely used Moons.


You have the power to reflect. Whenever a player attempts to force you to lose or receive cards into your normal hand in a way you do not like, you may reflect the attempt onto a third player. The selected player must now lose or receive cards from his normal hand. You must decide before seeing which cards you would gain or lose whether or not to reflect.

History: Evolving from a planet of molten rock, the Mirrors became impervious to radiation damage. Realizing others will only hurt themselves by attacking them, the Mirrors see nothing in their way except their own vanity.

Do not use in a 2-player game.

Note: This power is a trifle awkward to understand and, if I recall correctly, not very powerful.


You have the power of conversion. On every one of your challenges, if you share a base with another player, you may convert his tokens to your own by flipping them over for use as your own. You may only convert tokens for one player on one base at a time. Converted tokens revert to normal when lost to the warp.

Note: This power worked out okay.


You have the power of extra sight. Whenever you take cards from the deck, take one more than you are entitled to. Of the cards you have just received, immediately discard one you don’t want. When buying cards with lucre, you do not spend an extra lucre to see the extra card.

Note: This power is more powerful than it looks.


You have the power of webbing. All of your bases are covered with webs. Any players’ tokens on your bases may not be removed without your permission, or unless they are going to the Warp or Void. When you are the defensive player, all tokens on the planet count as part of your force, and if you should lose the challenge, all of the tokens on the planet go to the warp. All tokens on the planet will count for consolation, Victory Boon rewards or other rewards/penalties as if all the tokens were yours, even though the planet still counts as a base for other players whose tokens are there.

Note: This power worked out okay.


You have the power of telepathy. Whenever you are a main player, and after both you are your opponent have asked for allies, everyone entering the challenge secretly writes down how many tokens they are bringing in, and on which side. Everyone reveals this to you only. You may tell other players this information as you like. After cards are revealed, everyone reveals what they wrote and disposes their tokens as appropriate.

Do not use in a 2-player game.

Note: This power is extremely awkward to play, and conveyed no obvious advantage. No one wanted to play it.


You have the power to twin. Whenever you play challenge cards as main player, you may play more than one challenge card, as long as all the challenge cards are identical in both type and value. For example, you could play all the Attack 6’s in your hand. Like the Deuce, you add all the cards together when calculating your challenge score. Unlike the Deuce, you discard all the challenge cards you play.

Note: This power helps to make the low-value cards more useful. It also gets them out of your hand faster, too.


You have the power of unity. Whenever you are a main player, all tokens of your color in the challenge hex count as part of your force. No power can use your tokens as part of their force when you are using them also, although they could put your tokens at risk. For example, when attacking Warpish in the Warp Hex, Warpish does not add your tokens in the warp to his score, you add them to yours. Your opponents’ Fungoid stacks and Super Zombie tokens cannot count the value of your captured tokens when used in a challenge against you. Although all of your tokens in the hex add to your score, only those in the challenge itself are subject to risk, consolation, etc.

Note: Unfortunately, this power is less powerful than I intended. Normal play tends to spread out one’s tokens amongst all the hexes, nullifying any advantage that this power might give.