This is hard for space nerds like us to admit, but let's face facts here, folks: Earth is amazing. You want to go to another solar system to find aliens? What's so cool about aliens? When it comes down to it they're just animals on a different rock. We have so many cool animals here I can't even begin to describe them all.
Sci-fi authors have been convincing us for generations that beings on alien planets will look like these disgusting, spiny...alien-ish creatures. But here's a fact: most of their designs are cribbed from deep sea Earth creatures. Seriously, go watch a documentary about deep ocean animals. It will blow your mind, guaranteed. Exhibit A: that thing in the image above. Real. Earth has animals that look like carnival rides. Beat that, aliens.
Aliens are overrated. I'll take a gorilla over a Hanar any day. And Salarians are weak compared to blue whales.