There's a great early SciFi book by George R R Martin called "Tuf Voyaging". In one of the chapters he uses his spaceship "Seed Ship" to create a bunch of alien monsters for a planet that fights it wars through monster arena battles.

He create a large cat like creature called a "cobalcat", it has infared eyes, and psionic abilities.

Has this cat creature turned up in any of his other short stories?

I'm sure I can remember a story about a human manned spaceship that crashes? or lands on an alien planet. While there they come across one of these cats that tricks them into thinking its harmless and benign. But eventually kills them once they take off with it on the ship? I think thats how it goes. I'm a bit murky on the details. Any help would be great. Thanks.

  • 2
    if you like GRRM's non-GOT stuff, please read Fevre Dream. It's absolutely fantastic.
    – Daft
    Commented Jun 17, 2015 at 8:34
  • 1
    Agree. Its great. Funny enough, I only knew of Martin as a SciFi wirter when I read his work, and Fevre Dream. Didn't get into GOT till later :)
    – JimDiGriz
    Commented Jun 17, 2015 at 9:09
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    Same. Pity he didn't write more of the stand alone stuff.
    – Daft
    Commented Jun 17, 2015 at 9:24

1 Answer 1


I would guess the story you're thinking of is Black Destroyer by A. E. van Vogt. This later formed the first chapter of the fixup novel The Voyage of the Space Beagle. I can see the similarity with the cobalcat aka cobalt panther, and you have to wonder if George R. R. Martin had this in mind when he wrote A Beast for Norn.

As far as I know Martin's only mention of the cobalcat was in A Beast for Norn (the story you found in Tuf Voyaging). Likewise the coeurl didn't reappear in any of van Vogt's later work.

  • 1
    Hah! @John Rennie thats it! Great find! Thank you very much. I have been searching through my library for the last week trying to find it. I have a copy of the Voyage here. Must have read it decades ago.
    – JimDiGriz
    Commented Jun 17, 2015 at 9:14
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    I just read it again. There are definite similarities between the two. Considering George R R Martin's love of pulp SciFi as well, its hard not to believe this influenced his cobalt cats.
    – JimDiGriz
    Commented Jun 17, 2015 at 9:19

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