One of the core concepts of the roleplaying game Dungeon World is that of Moves. Moves can be thought of as responses to the player characters’ failed or partially failed actions; the results of their missteps. When I first read about this idea, it struck me as similar to Twists in the Torchbearer/Burning Wheel series of roleplaying games. Again, filling the same role of pushing the GM to drive plot and action as a result of poor dice rolling, whereas the players do so on dice rolls that are exceptionally well. While this was bubbling in my mind, some of my Star Wars players discussed,
“Why is this symbol called ‘Threat’? Calling it ‘Disadvantage’ would be so much more clear as to what it does.”
Everything then clicked and I jumped into the conversation to disagree. Threats generated on a FFG Star Wars dice roll aren’t so mundane as to be a mere disadvantage, they represent new, previously unseen dangers and obstacles that are introduced. Just like a Move. Just like a Twist.
Hence, we come to my scribbled notes for my home campaign; CRUSH the REBELLION – Operation V. In this Operation, the scene was setup as a tense, difficult situation which needed the Agents immediate intervention. I then used fairly punishing difficulties for most activities, usually 3 Challenge dice, and then activated new problems on any result of at least 2 Threat or worse. I had a long list of Complications, such as introducing new enemies or surprise traps laid by a Nemesis, to pull from as I needed inspiration on the fly. The results worked out beautifully, often creating a high-paced, panic-filled environment that never really left the players any chance to catch their breath. It was exactly the style and tone I wanted, and I highly encourage Galaxy Masters to try their hand at this method of adventure design.
… and messed up the rules for vehicle weapon attack difficulties. Why didn’t anyone tell me earlier? What am I supposed to be doing here, reading the rules?
I think part of this is that I often mentally confuse the rules for the Edge of the Empire Beta with those that changed throughout the Beta Updates and the final Core Rulebook. This issue came up at my home game just the other day (thanks, Steven) and, suffice to say, I am embarrassed. In general, almost all the attack difficulties listed in my popular Starship Cheat Sheets need to be increased by 1.
As a service to my fans, I’ve not only updated all of the sheets to be accurate, but I’ve also added an impressive list of never before crafted Starship Sheets for some of the more popular Imperial and/or Capital starships, all the way up to the massive Imperial Star Destroyer. Enjoy!
STARFIGHTERS & SMALL CRAFT
- All-Terrain Personal Transport (PDF) (Word)
- All-Terrain Scout Transport (PDF) (Word)
- Aratech 74-Z Military Speeder Bike (PDF) (Word)
- Storm IV Cloud Car (PDF) (Word)
- Incom T-16 Skyhopper (PDF) (Word)
- TIE/LN Fighter (PDF) (Word)
- TIE/SA Tactical Bomber (PDF) (Word)
- TIE/IN Interceptor (PDF) (Word)
- TIE/D Defender Multi-Role Starfighter (PDF) (Word)
- RZ-1 “A-Wing ” Light Interceptor (PDF) (Word)
- T65B “X-Wing” Multi-Role Starfighter (PDF) (Word)
- BTL-S3 “Y-Wing” Attack Starfighter (PDF) (Word)
- A/SF-01 “B-Wing” Heavy Fast Attack Starfighter (PDF) (Word)
FREIGHTERS & MISCELLANEOUS
- Firespray System Patrol Craft (PDF) (Word)
- Ghtroc 720 Light Freighter (PDF) (Word)
- Sorosuub Luxury 3000 Space Yacht (PDF) (Word)
- Wayfarer-Class Medium Freighter (PDF) (Word)
- YT-1300 Light Freighter (PDF) (Word)
- YT-2400 Light Freighter (PDF) (Word)
- YV-929 Armed Transport (PDF) (Word)
- T-4A Lambda-Class Long Range Shuttle (PDF) (Word)
- CR90 Corvette (PDF) (Word)
- EF76 Nebulon-B Frigate (PDF) (Word)
- Imperial I-Class Star Destroyer (PDF) (Word)
- MC80 Liberty Type Star Cruiser (PDF) (Word)
I’ve received another great guest contribution this week, this time from Peter Holland. Peter gives us a sampling of a Heist Dashboard he has created for his home group, a clever little PowerPoint Presentation file that interactively allows the Crew to review their current heist options, peruse various details, and select their next impetus for adventure.
I think this is a great idea, and brings nostalgic memories back to me from playing Privateer as a kid. As an adult in the 21st Century, I look forward to hearing from the computer-savvy Triumph & Despair readers who take this idea and create their own interfaces, similar to this, for their own groups. As I’ve talked about before here, this is a great jumping point for creating meaningful choice; presenting the players with transparent information, allowing them to make informed decisions on the course of the campaign, and holding them responsible to both the rewards and the perils of that decision.
Building on the successes of the first T is for Talents, this post aims to include a variety of new situations to cover the Careers and Specializations in both FFG Star Wars roleplaying game core books.
Combat in Edge of the Empire cannot be avoided. However, special care needs to be taken in a campaign so that the Galaxy Master does not fall into the seductive path of quick, easy, predictable, repetitive, and boring combat encounters. In fact, player characters in Edge of the Empire would do well to find ways to avoid fighting, if at all possible, even if that means sending allied troops to certain death for the greater good.
In order for Galaxy Masters to help push their players away from too much tactical combat in a non-tactical game, they must entice those players with rewarding scenes in which the players’ characters are able to demonstrate their value and worth. This can be done by designing scenes which benefit the unique and often underrepresented Career Talents. Compiled in the table below are interesting challenges, scenarios, and problems to be solved all taken from the benefits incurred by the Talents offered for each Career and Specialization that do not have an obvious benefit in combat, or whose benefit in combat is in a specialized niche.
When you, as Galaxy Master, are struggling to find a way to either move the plot of your adventure along in a new way, or are grasping to find a way to shine a spotlight on a player character that has been too long neglected, consult the list below to gain inspiration by either choosing an interesting scene or challenge described, or roll randomly with a d100 to let fate be your guide.
Here is a wonderful print by Ralph McQuarrie, one of the many that I enjoy. An early draft of the Millennium Falcon, it depicts the starship docked on the Imperial prison planet Alderaan.
And then there is this:
One of the most well-received posts on Triumph & Despair has been the invaluable Revised Stat Block Format. It takes its cues from other roleplaying games designed for maximum legibility and utility at the gaming table, expertly presenting the overwhelming wealth of information in the stat blocks for Edge of the Empire and Age of Rebellion in a way to lead a panicked Galaxy Master seamlessly and intuitively through a combat encounter. It also is a necessary component in running adventures in the SpaceCore style; utilizing the streamlined format to allow the Galaxy Master to focus on provided a fast, furious experience of maximum intensity.
Galaxy Master Eric Carltock has taken this idea to the next level, applying his artistry to the revised stat block format to create something wholly new. He has graciously allowed his work to be posted here and I could not be more thrilled. Behold!
This set of 64 painstakingly crafted stat blocks cover the range of enemies presented in the Edge of the Empire roleplaying game. They take the fundamentals of design pioneered here at Triumph & Despair and put a shine to them; creating a stat block with both elegant presentation and an artistic style to match the rest of the Core Rulebook, something to truly replace the cumbersome, unreadable blocks of the past.
For my own sake, I plan on giving these great stat blocks a permanent home in my Galaxy Master’s Binder; waiting in the wings for the times when I need to pull out a quick NPC, unprepared and on the fly while running a game.
My Crush the Rebellion campaign continues on at full blast. This past Sunday, we had an amazingly fun session that had players enraptured and eager to jump into the narrative to describe their cunning plan. Here are my scribbled notes and lessons learned.