Star Wars: Pandora's Legacy
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…
The Galactic Empire is the dominant force in the Galaxy. While there are always minor rebellions and uprisings, the Empire has become a monolithic and implacable military state. Some vestiges of independence and democracy remain, but they are largely pageantry, lacking real substance.
History is written by the victors. Over two decades ago the crumbling Galactic Republic barely survived a destructive civil war. Corrupt and decadent, the desperate Republic turned from the elitist and aloof Jedi, and took control of its own destiny and defense. Led by the savior who would become the Emperor, the ancient government was reborn in sacrifice and discipline into the Empire which eventually crushed the rebels, and restored iron-clad order to the civilized Galaxy.
This is the lesson taught in Imperial schools; in an age of restricted holonet access and censored media, it may be the only version of events available on some worlds. While many living on the Fringe never held great love for the Republic or the Jedi, a quarter century is not long enough to erase the living memory of their existence and fate.
It is the 22nd Year of the Reign of the Emperor, and while there are rumors of a growing and organized Rebellion, the galaxy is still under the thumb of Imperial Rule. At the fringes of civilized space, experiences with the Empire are the same: if they aren’t being smothered by the tyranny of Imperial law, they a languishing under the pall of Imperial neglect. In many cases, both.
A very short time ago in a place that looks like my living room…
It is time to get your geek on. With the introduction of Edge of Empire it is clearly time to run a new table-top Star Wars game. This Obsidian Portal Site represents the early fruits of that labor. I plan on maintaining it both as a record of the game and as a resource for future games.
We will be using the Star Wars Edge of Empire ruleset from Fantasy Flight Games. Right now there is only a single rulebook, although FFG has developed a special dice rolling app for both Apple and Android products. Since the specialized dice needed for this rule system aren’t yet commercially available it is recommended that players get this app.
I want to try this system out because it has a focus on narrative storytelling and moves somewhat away from miniature/map-based combat systems. It is characterized by a set of custom dice that display not only success or failure, but also provides advantages and disadvantages in a single roll.
I wanted to move away from the WotC Saga system, despite the fact that I like it. Since it is no longer being supported, and was never indexed, it felt like too daunting a task to walk a group through a library of source-books without any master list of feats, species, classes, talents, etc.
The theme of the game is “Life at the Fringes”. Unlike past games I’ve run, I’ve opted to go with standard Star Wars cannon, although what your characters do and don’t know will be significantly affected by your environments.
This is a dark age for the Galaxy. A hundred years ago the Holonet made communication and information across systems nearly instantaneous. Hyperspace Lanes were well mapped and unrestricted. Trade was plentiful and commerce was encouraged.
This is the age of the Empire. Information and news can still reach distant systems, but it travels at the pace of the Fringers who eke out their living on the edge. History is being actively rewritten by the regime, spreading ignorance and misinformation with each passing year. Hyperspace travel is perilous and subject to burdensome taxation and military oversight.
It’s no wonder Luke was so ignorant and naïve, and Han and Chewie risked Imperial law to live life on their own terms.
This game takes place during the end of the Imperial Era. Specifically, the game will start sometime after the events in A New Hope but before the events in Empire Strikes Back. Alderaan has been destroyed, as has the dreaded Death Star, although public knowledge of these events is deeply skewed.
The destruction of Alderaan was a shocking, deeply traumatic event for the civilized galaxy. Although early reports claimed that the Empire had used the ostensibly peaceful world as a target for a new and terrible superweapon, the official Imperial story is nearly the opposite: the Alderaanians, in their support of the so-called Rebel Alliance were testing their own doomsday weapon which went tragically awry, destroying the entire world.
The common Galactic citizen is unlikely to take this explanation at face value, but the Empire has not been shy about publicizing convincingly damning evidence that Leia Organa, Princess and daughter of former Senator Bail Organa, was a rebel sympathizer actively working for their cause.
No Imperial superweapon has been found, although rumors abounded of a Rebel attack near Yavin IV that purportedly destroyed a massive Imperial Space Station. Rebels may claim this as a watershed moment for their insurrection, but as the Imperias are quick to point out, there is simply no proof that any such battle occurred, or that any such superweapon existed. The Empire categorically denies both.
For the spacers, colonists, exiles and criminals living at the Outer Rim, these events are as far displaced as the theoretical benefits brought by the Galactic Empire: order, stability, law. What they have seen plenty of is Imperial troopers, Imperial bureaucracy, Imperial taxes, and Imperial tariffs.