Monday, April 23, 2012

What I Did This Weekend: Groundwork

This post is dedicated to Mateo, whose love of Star Wars is already infecting a new generation.

Rumor has it that people don't like reading session recaps. I like writing them, though.

My intermittent Star Wars group finally dealt with their rival, nemesis, and backstory-driving crime boss Zal Duster. Seven hours, two boxes of Little Debbies, and 23 corpses later, the PCs were in charge of a semi-functional Crime Moon.

Dash Zzohren: A wily Smuggler with a heart of iron pyrite. Owes a massive debt to Zal Duster. Played by Steve.
Hawke Zzohren: Minor Jedi and brother to Dash. Occasionally has a conscience. Played by Scott.
Victarian: Tactically-minded Merc who hangs out with them. No known last name or backstory. Played by Mark.

I've run a lot of Star Wars groups over the years. Almost all of them fall into this mold -- criminal PC with starship and debt, Force-using PC, lots-of-guns PC, and if there's a fourth player they'll be a Wookiee or Ewok or some other goofball alien. These boys, in fact, had Wookiee for a brief time (Ktrellaak, played by Chad). He parted ways with us amicably over, I believe, my stance that pretty much every Star Wars novel and comic and prequel movie is filth that will not be allowed to sully my game. I think history supports me on this one.

At first, Zal Duster was a necessary evil. He loaned Dash enough credits to buy the ship Starsplitter, which serves as the PCs' home base. Dash and the boys would periodically make payments on the debt. All was well.

Then Zal started asking Dash to do jobs for him directly -- mostly arms smuggling. Dash worked some deals on the side with Zal's inventory, often to the Rebel Alliance, neglecting to share the profits.

Then Zal started telling Dash to smuggle more dangerous things, like activated assassin droids. And Zal would send along "bodyguards" to make sure that the missions went smoothly. One of those bodyguards never did come back.

Then Zal set Dash and the boys up on a salvage operation that was actually an Imperial trap, as part of Zal's cozy-up-to-the-Empire initiative. The PCs fought and bluffed their way out, then completed the salvage job and delivered the planetary ion cannon to the Rebellion for use on some ice planet.

Enough was enough. Something had to be done about Zal Duster. Plus the boys were entranced with the idea of taking over his infamous Crime Moon. They did a little homework -- and I did a lot -- to figure out how to hit his weak spots before our next session. But in time-honored PC fashion, they didn't actually come up with a plan until 90 minutes into the game...

This is running long. I'll break for now. Join us soon for Zal Duster II: The Dustening, in which a lawyer is yelled at! Many shots are fired! And I actually deploy a pre-drawn map with numbered locations corresponding to an encounter key!


  1. To comfirm the infection, I asked the 'new generation' about the ion cannons on the ice planet and she told me that "there are monsters that want to get Luke and get his lightsaber but Luke got it first and got the monster and run away and see Obi-Nobi and told him, "Luke-You Go See Yo-Da"
    Infection confirmed.

  2. Ha! I only just noticed this comment, after my usual end-of-semester-no-time-for-blogs period. Obi-Nobi indeed.