Tag Archives: tabletop games

Cause & Effect 14 – The art of the Swindle…

C-3PO_EP2-IA-50348_R_8x10Do you see? Do you see what I have to deal with? He expects me to wear this…

Welcome back to Cause & Effect! Today’s nutshell topic: Swindling. When I was a young lad, my uncle told me a story of how his adventuring party (ad&d) had been swindled by a back alley weapons broker. While it seemed like a good idea at the time. The discounted weapons that they purchased ended up breaking when they needed them most. It made for an enjoyable story to hear and found a cozy spot in my head to call home.

I heavily lifted from the idea for one of my Saga campaigns. Where the Crew met a shady Twi’lek in a back alley, who wanted to sell them discounted med packs. They looked a little beat up, but they were assured (and believed) that the product had simply fell off the back of the delivery truck and had not been stolen (well, okay, maybe a little stolen. But they looked to be in a usable condition and hey, times are tough even for the good guys). Credits being tight as they are, and combat being as dangerous as it is; the Crew purchased a few of these med packs. The rub was that the med packs were damaged/expired/etc. and did not heal as well as a regular priced one.

The above example will maybe work once. Players are a sneaky lot and generally like to be the ones doing the swindling (or at least my players do). This is where you, as a GM, need to get a little sneaky yourself. Role Playing Games are designed (in my opinion) to be a form of co-operative story telling. Use this to your advantage. Swindles can just as easily be sneaked into an idea of the Crew as they can into a random encounter. If the Crew are the ones calling the shots, they may also feel as though they are in control of the situation. With the GM being forced to ‘wing it’, the players may not see the twist coming. For example:

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Cause & Effect 13 – What Kind of Thief Steals From an Old Lady?

“Oh my! I’m so glad that you were able to get my bag back. I was so worried. Oh, oh. Those are some well defined biceps that you have there. Do you work out? My nephew works out, but his arms aren’t as well defined as yours. Oh, silly me. I seem to have knocked my walker over. Could you be a dear and pick that up for me? Don’t worry about proper lifting technique. It’s a light walker. No back straining there. Mmmm, oh my...

Welcome back to Cause & Effect! Today I will be picking the results manually on the table presented in V is for Vignettes. These are my results:

Instigator Thug

Action Steals from

Target Poor Citizen

Escalation Quickly turns into a chase scene

Escalation I is for Illegal goods are involved

If the Crew will not defend the honor of an older Ithorian lady who has a taste for bulging biceps and Kowakian monkey-lizards, then who will?

Cause & Effect 12 – Poaching

Star Wars IV A New Hope

“Tortuga knows where it is. The bad news is that he was captured by the Imperials yesterday. The good news? That they’re transporting him to a secure facility tomorrow. That means there will be a small window to snatch him, while they try to make the move. We get him, extract the intel. Then we get the goods and get paid.

Welcome back to Cause & Effect! Today’s results were randomly rolled on the table presented in V is for Vignettes. These are my results:

Instigator Bounty Hunter

Action Discovers

Target Smuggler

Escalation has unavoidable Imperial entanglements

Escalation A is for Artifact is involved

Poaching is only wrong if you get caught…

EotE Core Update – Stat Blocks

images (1)

UPDATE: All Edge of the Empire Stat Blocks have been completed!

With the chaos of GenCon 2013 now behind us, Triumph & Despair can now get back to providing quality content for our beloved, patient readers. Long-time fan Will Patterson has graciously offered his editing skills and services to help update all of the Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition -style stat blocks from the Edge of the Empire Beta to be in line with the current Core Rulebook. A truly monumental task for which we are most grateful.

Here is Will’s first three entries. Keep an eye out for more stat block revisions, and a few surprises, coming out in the near future


The overall goal of these Stat Blocks is to provide as streamlined an experience as possible, for the benefit of overtaxed Galaxy Masters, while still retaining the utmost in accuracy. The following notes should help explain my formatting design and alleviate some confusion.

  1. Abilities and qualities that have a strikethrough (oftentimes the Cumbersome quality) are there to show that some effect has already been integrated into the stat block and can largely be ignored.
  2. Some abilities and qualities, such as those that add Boost to certain skills, are simply eliminated entirely off of the Stat Block with their effect built into the appropriate dice pools, etc. so that the Galaxy Master need never even think about them.
  3. Often on starships, multiple embankments of teh same weapon are indicated. Where possible, minion group rules have been used top upgrade the attacks of these weapons instead of requiring a Galaxy Master to make multiple attack rolls.
  4. On rare occasions, all in the capital starships section, an exorbitant number of combat dice are indicated for large weapon batteries. In these cases, instead of upgrading the attack via minion group rules, the attack is instead given a +1 damage increase per gun emplacement beyond the first. Thanks go to FangGrip the Consummate Gamer for the idea.

H is for Hutt

Disgusting, slimy, filthy, criminals.

Jabba_Puts_His_Slimy_Tongue_on_LeiaThe Hutts derive from a large, slug-like species and are well-known throughout both the outer rim and the core worlds as an expansive clan of immoral gangsters. Everything about them is vile and gross, both in body and in spirit, both in word and in deed. Hutts are a perfect “frenemy” for your Star Wars crew, offering lucrative contracts through their underworld connections, while offending all around them with their very presence, making conflicting side deals behind the crew’s backs, and tugging on both Obligations and Motivations in the most repulsive ways possible.

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Starship Sheets – More Updates

pilot-star-wars-27“Hey, it worked that way in the Beta. It’s not my fault!”

Someone called me out on my mistakes, giving me a swift kick in the pants. I hate to distribute inaccurate information, and that was what I was doing with all of my Starship Sheets. Gunnery difficulties, Boost Shields, and Damage Control were all just slightly off, and this I cannot abide.

Additionally, the YT-2400 Light Freighter was specifically requested by a fan and the siren call of Age of Rebellion demanded that I provide a convenient starship sheet for that freighter and the two-seater (pilot & gunner) variant on the A4 model, the BTL-S3 Y-Wing. Also, speeder bikes.

Thus, I present:

  • Firespray System Patrol Craft (PDF) (Word)
  • Firespray System Patrol Craft with Boarding Action house rule (PDF) (Word)
  • Ghtroc 720 Light Freighter (PDF) (Word)
  • Lambda T-4A Imperial Shuttle (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)
  • BTL-S3 Y-Wing (PDF) (Word)
  • 74-Z Military Speeder Bike (PDF) (Word)

One-Shot PreGens

imagesA few weeks back at the debut weekend of the Edge of the Empire Core Rulebook, I decided to herald this exciting new release by running a one-shot heist at my local gaming store. The goal of the event was to introduce new players to the system and allow them a taste of what Edge of the Empire has to offer. Overall, it was a huge success.

The adventure itself, which might get further treatment here on Triumph & Despair, was a rollicking good time with speeder bikes, stormtroopers, repressed Wookiees, lightsabers, and a high-speed train derailment. I had 5 players at my table, only one of which had played any part of the EotE line of games. Everyone cheered throughout the game and left with smiles on their faces. Many had to be disappointed when I broke the news to them that I simply did not have the time or the extra table space to invite them into a regular home game.

So many games, so little time!

In preparation for what turned out to be an amazingly fun night of gaming, I created a set of six pre-generated characters for the players to choose from.

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