5 Ideas for an Alien Invasion Story

Here are five quick and simple ideas for an alien invasion story, courtesy of SciFi Ideas.

1. Gone to Ground

underground cityWhen a huge oil reservoir is sucked dry, scientists use it to construct a huge underground bunker, complete with its own closed ecosystem. While the main purpose of the cavern is scientific research, it can also be closed off from the rest of the world and used to survive apocalyptic events on the surface. When aliens invade and begin systematically wiping out humanity, this huge underground complex becomes the best hope for the survival of our species.

The idea of converting a spent oil reservoir into an underground ecosystem is pretty wappy, I’ll admit. You could use any large cave sufficiently sealed off from the surface, but this idea has a nice ex-industrial feel about it. Either way, you’d end up with something like the Genesis cave in The Wrath of Khan.

2. Safe Distance

The Waters of Mars (Dr Who)Aliens invade the Earth, but they don’t know about the human colony on Mars. While Earth is conquered, the Martian colonists survive by avoiding detection. They must sit back and watch humanity being conquered, powerless to help. Even sending transmissions to Earth would compromise their secret hiding place. Eventually, they begin planning the liberation of Earth.

What I like most about this story is that the Martian colonists would have to watch millions die on Earth, being powerless to stop it. They would have to make some pretty tough decisions in order to survive, and they might not all agree that it’s the right decision. It’s a real fight or flight debate that could tear the group apart. Those wanting to come out of hiding and join the fight would put the rest of the colony at risk, and might be seen by other members of the group as dangerous individuals.

While the conflicts and decisions that surround the initial invasion would be great material for a story, I also like the idea of moving the story several decades into the future. The colonists could be playing the long game, eventually returning to Earth to help drive the aliens away, but only when they in a strong enough position to do so. Alternatively, the aliens might eventually decide move on by themselves, having got what they came for. Either way, the Martian colonists would be returning to a ravaged Earth. If a significant amount of time has passed they would be returning to Earth as outsiders, having experienced very different challenges. Perhaps their ideas about how to rebuild human civilization are different to those on Earth, creating further conflict.

3. Victory Through Abstinence

alien invasionThe Earth has been invaded by aliens who harvest humans as food. Decades later, the surviving humans are being farmed as livestock. They realize that the only way to drive the aliens away is to reduce the human population. The slogan “Victory Through Abstinence” appears on the streets, and individuals are pressured to undergo castration. Unless they can convince the aliens move on, humanity will end with the current generation.

This is a very dark idea with a very bleak outlook. As such, it would need to be set in a very bleak landscape in order to work. Humanity would have to be in a very desperate position to take such a stance, but the destruction of civilization, personal liberties and personal security, and limited access to food and water might just do it. I imagine that nuclear weapons would have been deployed against the aliens, making the situation even worse.

I see this as a story not about the aliens, but about the effect they have on society, and about personal struggle. Think of the panic and desperation of the survivors fleeing the aliens in countless alien invasion movies. Now think what kind of survivor camps and survivor cults would arise if the torment were to last for decades.

4. Water Foul

The Earth is invaded/colonized by aquatic aliens whose only interest is in the Earth’s oceans. Many nations sign treaties with the aliens, allowing them to stay in exchange for scientific knowledge.

This isn’t so much a story idea as it is a basic premise. It could take a number of different directions – the ‘Earth: Final Conflict‘ route, for example, or a kind of underwater ‘Alien Nation‘.

5. High Stakes

An advanced and ancient race of aliens has explored and claimed the entire galaxy. They are huge creatures, and they walk among the stars like giants. Only Earths insignificance has preventing them from visiting us previously. The last time they came to Earth, we were unintelligent ape-like creatures and the Earth had little value. Now, an alien by the name of Sprurl Gwoft has been given a number of star systems as a gift from his father, and Earth is included in the hand-me-down. Eager to make the most of his new dominion, Sprurl Gwoft sends a contingent to Earth to assess its value and begin extracting resources.

At first, humanity is powerless to resist the alien surveyors, but they eventually manage to trick and subdue them. Holding them captive, they learn about Sprurl Gwoft and the one chance they may have to gain their right to independence. Gwoft’s species are notorious gamblers. They place such little value on the thousands of systems under their control that they are willing to risk them in high-stake games of chance. If the people of Earth challenge Gwoft to such a game, the egotistical alien will be honor-bound to accept.

The people of Earth send their most skilled poker player to meet with Sprurl Gwoft on the galaxy’s most prestigious casino planet, where he gambles the future of our planet on a game he barely understands. The stakes are high; freedom for humanity, or eternal slavery at the hands of Gwoft and his cronies.


This article was written by Mark Ball.

  • Jay Brown

    I really like the ideas in “Safe Distance” and “Victory Through Abstinence”, so much so I think they could work together. The Martian colonists could return to Earth to discover a beaten down occupied population on the brink of sacrificing themselves instead of surrendering.

    • http://www.scifiideas.com admin

      Actually, I originally conceived of those two being together, but I thought it might be a bit too complicated

  • http://tomorrownewsnetwork.com/ James Pailly

    I like “Safe Distance” a lot. A write a lot of stories about people who are unable to do anything about the horrific stuff going on in the galaxy.

    As for “Victory Through Abstinence,” this world sounds like the perfect setting for a love story.

  • George A.R

    How about Victory Through Abstinence but the we eat the aliens …

    • http://www.scifiideas.com admin

      George, yes. Serve me up a slice of Texas-style alien steak