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Darkstryder Railroading and Plot Immunity of the FarStar
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LTAaripJasall
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2020 9:28 am    Post subject: Darkstryder Railroading and Plot Immunity of the FarStar Reply with quote

Hello, GM running Darkstryder here. We are approaching the end of the first book, and its been a blast to run through this old campaign so far. We've added some of our own flavor to the original published material--namely flying in an old beat up Quasar-fire class FarStar instead of the Corellian Corvette.

That being said, there have been a few situations where the ship has suffered a massive pounding. And I am curious how other GMs have handled it. The books assume many things in traditional old school railroading style. I've killed off some Darkstryder NPCs and crew to have the PCs actions have consequence.

Has anyone ever though of crippling or destroying the FarStar itself though? How would you as a GM handle that, and then what crumbs could you leave the players to get back on the campaign track?

We've already completely blown out the engines and visited Tanquilla Beach, but with some upcoming battles, I really want the players to feel that death is possible.

It may not even really be about the destruction of the ship. I may cause more fighter craft to be lost, or even cause other superstructure damage to the ship that they will need to embark on sidequests to remedy.

I'm still just posting this to see what others might do for ideas.

Yours in destruction and woe,
The GM.
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2020 3:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Never having read it, i couldn't really say whether i'd keep to its "Plot immunity".

BUT is there anything in the story, that says you HAVE to keep the farstar corvette till the end?
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Ray
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2020 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kind of hard to walk to the next part of the adventure.
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Whill
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2020 8:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right!

I wish I could help. I have the entire campaign but I've never ran any of this one. I've only even had one campaign that went into the New Republic era.
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Ray
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2020 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My personal suggestion is that you get the FarStar the same kind of "Plot Immunity" that The Millenium Falcon has. Bounced off planets, blasted repeatedly, poorly maintained (or so heavily modified it can't be maintained properly!), eaten by a space slug, and even landing completely and utterly on fire once!

Yeah, it'll get you there. But it doesn't have to be pretty in the end.

"This is your Captain speaking. Due to the amount of damage that the FarStar has taken, we are going to have to requisition every stick of chewing gum and every roll of spacetape in order to even try and continue on our mission. Also, if anyone has Microgravity Welding Skills that they didn't include on their service record, please report to the hanger bay deck officer immediately. No, the gravity doesn't work there, again."

Hell, if the ship pulls into the New Republic Space once again on two engines and venting atmo, you're probably doing it about right.
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2020 1:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ray wrote:
Kind of hard to walk to the next part of the adventure.


Couldn't they do that though, via using a freighter or two?
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LTAaripJasall
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2020 9:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

These are good ideas. The campaign has a very Battlestar Galactica 2004, or Star Trek Voyager feel to it. I liked the ideas here about making gravity not work on parts of the ship, and that has encouraged me to make a notepad full of other damage I can throw at the players that you might hear in some of these more grim science fiction shows.

-explosive decompression on decks x-y, “Blast! We had Z people stationed in that section!”
-that blast punctured the reactor housing and we’re going to have to emergency shut it down but controls aren’t responding!
-The hangar deck magnetic shield just blew out.. our X-Wings and all the cargo not tied down is now floating out the door


I originally posted to try and figure out consequences for the PCs and this helps. Now I have ideas on how to gut their trusted space steed without full out saying: space rocks fall and you need a new ride.
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2020 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One thing, if its too damaged, to where they 'need a new ride', how could they fly it, without killing everyone on board, to a 'safe harbor', to GET the new ride?
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Ray
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2020 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I was last running my game, I made it so that Capital Ships took a lot of killing, sort of like how it was in the starfighter Space Simulators X-Wing and TIE Fighter.

With Star Wars: Squadrons, it becomes even more in depth and necessary.

Now, admittedly, a Corvette isn't a big Capital Ship, but the amount of modifications done to it for the flight deck likely makers her a tougher bird than her slimmer sisters.

Another thing that might have to be done is search for new Crewmembers on the planets you pass, trying to figure out who/what you can trust and how skilled they are.

Good things to target on a Corvette:
- The Sensor Dish. That being destroyed shuts down the primary reactor, which turns off the engines. Secondary power systems would stay operative, so life support is on, but, well, that's how the Devastator captured the Tantive IV.

- Turbolasers and Laser Positions. For the obvious reasons that the opposing forces don't want to be shot at any longer. Those positions have crewmembers, and might have highly explosive blaster gas containers near them (likening to having bags of powder on "Age Of Sail" and WWI/WWII ships main guns). Replacing these and training a crew for them is going to be very, very difficult.

- Flight Deck. The FarStar is a Semi-Carrier, it's Starfighters are supposed to be it's weapons, with the weapons on the ship for close-in defense. Not having a place to land, refuel, repair, and so on will wear on pilots. Luckily, as we've seen from Star Wars: Rebels, starfighters can dock at Docking Ports (which the FarStar might only have two or three of because of the flight deck), which allows for rest and refuelling. Rearming with physical projectiles and repairs are a lot trickier.

- Bridge. Officer PCs upset they aren't the Captain? Shoot the bridge. It'll leave the ship vulnerable until secondary command can be set up in engineering, and, well, field promotions for everyone. "Not like this, NEVER WANTED IT LIKE THIS!" Repairs will depend on how badly the control systems were damaged, it might just need a transparisteel bridge wall repaired. It might require all new controls and computer systems.

- Engines. A Corvette is a speedster with a fat @$$ end. If a starfighter can get in the sweet spot of being "blind" to weapons, but not so close the Ion Engines are cooking their ship, they can stay there and shoot laser after laser into the very heavily required equipment. These are probably easier to repair.

- Cargo Bays. If you think X-Wings and some crates going for a space ride is bad, think about a huge supply of food and spare parts leaving the ship at difficult to calculate direction and speed going off into the Black. The Rebellion had better food compared to the Empire, and going on Emergency Rations (likely tasteless Stormtrooper Rations that doesn't fill the belly) is going to hit morale more than you'd think.

- Hull Plating. Just putting holes in the ship, as was mentioned, is going to cost lives. Especially around living quarters! Bravo and Charlie rotations will be sleeping while Alpha rotation is at their assigned positions. Battlestations will be different, but still...

Any of these parts being damaged can be repaired from stocks on board the ship, but it isn't likely a Corvette (even a big one like the FarStar) would have a proper "forge" in it to mine asteroids for spare parts metals. The machine shops can manufacture parts and such until they run out of blanks, and then it might be time to trade with other planets and species.

Another thing that will likely need replacing is Starfighters. I'd suggest more Battlestar Galactica and less Star Trek Voyager for that one. The creation of the "stealth" fighter on Galactica, initially as a morale enhancement, is a great example of trying to turn spare parts, a "hanger queen", and anything else scrounged up to make an Ugly that gets the ship back up to full starfighter capacity. Another option on this is, again, trading with other planets, and will actually make "Archaic Ship Piloting" a useful skill.

Another example I'd like to give is the NX-01 Enterprise in the second and third seasons. Beaten, damaged, but not broken.

Hell, even have some random crew mention, "Damn but I'd have thought the old Fairy Star would have broken up from those kinds of hits, but she held tough." "Corellian Zero-Kelvin Forged Duristeel, I'll take it any day over what they think passes for it out of Kuat." "Where's Jamison? Blown out into space? But we need our fourth for Sabbac!" "Well, we got the fighters back up to spec, but the flight deck is still minus an atmospheric shield. Deck crews and pilots have to go out in vacsuits." "How'd they get the hyperdrive fixed this time, shoelaces? ... I was joking. REALLY?"
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2020 1:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heck, what about hitting their water filtration systems.. Ever see Stargate universe, how the crew stunk cause no one could wash (till they figured out those funky showers)...
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Ray
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2020 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

All kinds of things that can go wrong with a ship on an extended mission.

I'm sure we have some folks that were in the Navy IRL who could give us other examples.
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2020 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ray wrote:
All kinds of things that can go wrong with a ship on an extended mission.

I'm sure we have some folks that were in the Navy IRL who could give us other examples.


I am sure i could.. some would make you all shy away from ever going on a big ship!
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Ray
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2020 2:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

garhkal wrote:
I am sure i could.. some would make you all shy away from ever going on a big ship!
With the ease I have getting seasick, that wouldn't take much.
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