Star Wars: Never Tell Me the Odds – These ARE The Droids You’re Looking For   1 comment

(This is a recap of a recent game of Star Wars, using a slight retooling of John Harper’s Danger Patrol system)

Our adventure begins in an engineer barracks ship in low orbit over Ord Mantell, scrapheap to the Empire. Three members of Renegade Squadron – cocky soldier DG-834, a reject clone trooper; Jedi diplomat Flail Envar-Shun; and droid pilot 34CC – were in the mess hall, hunting down one Cond Zendu, a traitor to the Rebel Alliance. Zendu was suspected to be selling secrets to the Empire, and Renegade Squadron had been assigned to “confirm his status” (that is to say, kill him).

Ord Mantell (c/o starwars.wikia.com)

Ord Mantell (c/o starwars.wikia.com)

DG-834 was deep in a game of sabacc against a variety of aliens, including a foul-tempered Gungan. Flail was undercover as an engineer, replete in dusty overalls and scratchy beard. 34CC was innocuously maintaining some equipment. 34CC was the first to spot Zendu, migrating for the exit in the midst of a crowd of engineers. However, just as CC radioed in to the team, CC was spotted by Noval Dana, a trader to whom CC owed some money. Flail was picked up by a senior officer, who needed the “engineer’s” help fixing a busted hyperdrive. And DG’s game was broken up over an accusation of cheating.

Cond Zendu (c/o starwars.wikia.com)

Cond Zendu (c/o starwars.wikia.com)

DG shouldered his way toward Flail, ruining the hyperdrive beyond repair by spilling a drink into its cyclonic tubes. He was then assaulted by the Gungan, grabbed from behind and tossed about bodily. Flail slipped away in the chaos, tagging Zendu with a bugging device. CC ducked Dana by stealing a robe from a Jawa taking an air shower.

Realizing that Zendu was going to get away unless they took drastic action, DG pegged Zendu in the head with a blaster shot at long range – while still being grappled! Flail wasn’t exactly thrilled at Zendu’s brains splattering all over his stolen engineer’s uniform, but couldn’t complain at the mission being successfully completed. CC returned the favor by pegging the Gungan with its holdout blaster, an equally tricky shot. The three Rebels then booked it for their transport.

In orbit around Ord Mantell, they rendezvoused with their commanding officer, Tymos Jax. He thanked them for killing Zendu, but expressed concern that Zendu might have found a way to get word to his Imperial contact regardless. Jax dispatched the team to Mon Calamari, aquatic planet and Imperial shipyard. They were to find Zendu’s contact, retrieve the data, and ensure that it didn’t get uploaded to the Empire’s data network.

Tymos Jax, Renegade Squadron (c/o starwars.wikia.com)

Tymos Jax, Renegade Squadron (c/o starwars.wikia.com)

The team arrived on Mon Calamari and split up to sniff out leads. DG-834 jacked a stormtrooper in an alley, swiped his uniform, and snuck into base, relying on his knowledge of relevant stormtrooper protocols to carry him through. Flail passed himself off as an Imperial officer, infiltrating the cadet academy on Mon Calamari to learn what he could that way. CC sliced into a data terminal around the docks, hoping that a pilot droid would fit in without raising eyebrows.

This is one of the few ways I diverged from Danger Patrol, and I think it works well. A Hook Scene – a scene in which the heroes gather leads and build up tension for the next action scene – works the same as an Action Scene: players gather dice based on abilities, roll, and look for hits. The only difference is that no Threats are in play. Instead, every hit allows the player to narrate one true fact about what they’re searching for. Every Danger result allows the GM to narrate one complication. The subsequent Action Scene is usually about playing out these complications.

What follows – what Renegade Squadron uncovered – is a joint narrative effort: partly made up by the players, partly by me. I’m really happy with how it turned out.

Mon Calamari (c/o starwars.wikia.com)

Mon Calamari (c/o starwars.wikia.com)

By hacking Imperial data logs, CC determined the name of Zendu’s contact, Lieutenant Melina Keosine. CC also confirmed that Keosine was on planet, and that Keosine had not received Zendu’s message yet. However, while disengaging from the data terminal, CC realized that it was being tailed: a shadowy, robed figure ducked behind a corner across the hangar bay.

Lt. Melinda Keosine (c/o amctv.com)

Lt. Melinda Keosine (c/o amctv.com)

DG blended into an Imperial barracks, falling back into his old routine as a stormtrooper. By spending a day overhearing the right gossip, he learned that the data was being transported via droid, and that this wasn’t just any droid, but a heavily armored droideka. The exchange would take place in an illegal arms depot deep underwater. He had just radioed this data back to the team when he was recruited for a special assignment: Lieutenant Keosine was taking 7th Company, his company, to pick up the data!

With some forged papers and a little Jedi handwaving, Flail passed himself off as a visiting Imperial officer. He learned from some front desk gossip that Lieutenant Keosine was in hot water with her commanders, and that she “needed the win” that this data would provide. However, due to the high rank and excellent qualifications he’d forged for himself, he was sent off on a very sensitive assignment: tracking down a rogue pilot droid, 34CC, and delivering it to the visiting Captain Piett!

Captain Piett

Placed in command of a detachment of stormtroopers, Flail substituted another droid’s description with that of CC’s. He then ordered the stormtroopers to disperse and secure all the hangar’s conventional exits. This left him alone with the commanding sergeant, whom he reluctantly Force-choked in an abandoned corner of the station.

Sneaking through the hangar, CC found a low-orbit pleasure yacht suitable to take down to planetside. However, the shadowy figure snuck up on CC at this point and fired a stunning charge at the pilot droid. CC realized the stalker was a bounty hunter droid, aiming to put a restraining bolt on CC! CC blasted the bounty hunter with its holdout, stormed the yacht, elbowed aside the elderly couple who owned it, and took off. So focused was CC on evading Imperial monitors and flying the yacht that it didn’t notice the hunter droid clinging to the outside of the craft, crawling toward the rear hatch …

DG bluffed his newfound comrades and followed the increasingly nervous Lieutenant Keosine to the aquatic hideout of Faid Santorini, Quarren arms dealer. Santorini met them in a steam-soaked tunnel within his base, asking if Keosine had his payment. When she confirmed that she did, the tunnel was filled with glowing red sensors: the eyes of assassin droids!

Faid Santorini (c/o starwars.wikia.com)

Faid Santorini (c/o starwars.wikia.com)

As the rear hatch of the yacht was forced open by the bounty hunter droid, CC plunged toward Mon Calamari’s oceanic surface, yanking up on the throttle at the last second. The yacht skipped across the surface, and the bounty hunter was scraped off like gum from a shoe. CC then activated the yacht’s amphibious mode and submerged for Santorini’s base.

DG laid down a hail of fire, taking out the assassin droids with suspicious accuracy. He and Keosine were the only two left alive. Keosine then charged down the corridor from which the Quarren had come, only to be cut down in a hail of blaster fire: the courier droideka was active and defending itself.

Flail arrived at the aquatic base to find DG pinned down by automatic blasters. An explosion buckled the tunnel, threatening to flood it with seawater. Flail used his Jedi powers to keep the structure intact, though he couldn’t say for how long …

Fortunately, CC charged to the rescue, piloting a flatbed cargo mover down the narrow tunnel. CC knocked the droideka off its legs, pinning it on its back. Flail and DG held off Santorini’s fleeing thugs, desperate to escape, while CC jury-rigged an escape capsule in the underwater hangar. DG ran back to get the data chip from the disabled droideka, barely making it back to the capsule in time.

Aboard their operations vessel, Renegade Squadron debriefed Commander Jax. DG reported that the droid’s data had been destroyed in the explosion. Later, in his quarters, DG examined the purloined chip on his data slate – leverage in case he wanted bigger or better things from the Alliance. CC, piloting the Renegade ship, viewed DG’s data terminal in turn, keeping tabs on the crafty clone trooper. And Flail Envar-Shun meditated in his cabin, brow heavy with the implications of his brief trip to the Dark Side.

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Posted October 13, 2013 by John Perich in Uncategorized

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One response to “Star Wars: Never Tell Me the Odds – These ARE The Droids You’re Looking For

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  1. Great session! Thanks.

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