Belit, Conan's best bet at a one true love, and the best female character created by Howard. Not because she was a Red Sonja, but because she was feminine. It's amazing that the Leftists who create our fiction today fail consistently to recognize that women who aren't feminine are simply unattractive and unlikable. I suppose that's because the only men that they typically know are equally lacking in masculinity.
For whatever reason, I've long been fascinated with the concept of apes or other primates that are equally intelligent as at least some men, and who have lost civilizations somewhere out there in the backwoods of whatever. I've got them in AD ASTRA and I've had them in most of my fantasy settings too, including the Mk. IV of DARK•HERITAGE. I haven't yet found a place for them in the evolving Mk. V, or in TIMISCHBURG, but I'm certain that eventually I will.
Scrambling! I believe this is concept art by none other than Frank Frazetta for the old Battlestar Galactica TV show. It was later attached (and flipped) to a novel that was part of the franchise.
There's nothing particularly special about this piece; there are loads of orbital space stations in place above countless worlds in the AD ASTRA setting that look more or less like this. In fact, you'll need them for the really big space-ships which are too massive to actually land on the surface or otherwise get too close to the gravity well of a massive object like a planet without risking structural damage. They can, of course, dock on an orbital platform like this and then send shuttles to the surface.
Although AD ASTRA is not meant to be a hard sci-fi, or even a "blue sci-fi" setting in the least—it's not part of the Campbellian "engineers with screwdrivers" type of sci-fi, it's more of the E. E. "Doc" Smith, Edmond Hamilton, Alex Raymond and Edgar Rice Burroughs "red sci-fi" type stuff, even Star Wars benefited from turning some exciting real science into exotic locales, if nothing else. This is an illustration of J1407b, an exoplanet with a ring system that's tens of millions of miles in size. In fact, each of thirty individual rings are tens of millions of miles across; the scope of this ring system is equivalent to an entire solar system almost. Sense of wonder indeed!
I've often been back and forth between embracing and avoiding the Classic influence, but I'm wondering right now where superhero-like mythical gods like Ares here can fit into my settings. Possibly I need to resurrect some of my other ideas to make room for something like this, because if I don't, eventually I'll miss it.
Speaking of superheroes, Magnus Robot Fighter is an interesting and poorly known example; a kind of champion of humanity who lives in a dystopian future not unlike that of The Terminator in some ways, although humanity is more enslaved rather than hunted and hurtling towards extinction, but of course, he's a superhero with superhuman strength and durability allowing him to fight metal robots with his bare hands and destroy them. Plus, he has this Flash Gordon look to him. I need to come up with a planet or two that's under the thumb of robot overlords, and it wouldn't hurt me to incorporate a bit more of the kind of toned-down superheroics of some of the Star Wars and Guardians of the Galaxy scale stuff into AD ASTRA.
I often use images of Abomination and Killer Croc to represent my Oerks; bit reptilian humanoids from heavy gravity worlds.
OK, this has nothing to do with any of my settings. I just thought it was funny. Sounds like they were a bit worried about the optics of this at LucasFilm, since the latest rumors coming out of the studio and from the actor himself are all about making him gay for his Latino best friend Poe Dameron instead of pining for Mary Sue Rey.
There's altogether a lack of Egyptian mummy/undead vibed aliens in AD ASTRA so far. Considering that I specifically want to focus on the more gee whiz space opera and not get caught up pseudo scientific realism for the setting, I need to sometimes remind myself to include stuff like this just to keep my wahoo meter from falling too low.
On the other hand, this game art from Dead Space 3 reminds me that I need a nice big stable of Boba Fett-like supercommando soldiers. They can't all be Cilindareans and Janissaries either; sometimes they just need to be incredibly talented free agents.
This concept art reminds of a quick location flashed in the old Disney animation for Ichabod Crane, and it reminds me painfully that the idea of Western civilization religion and horror are now purposefully and integrally worked into the fabric of DARK•HERITAGE and TIMISCHBURG and every other setting I'm working on. AD ASTRA doesn't have much horror in it, though, so maybe that's a bit of an exception.