Episode 1984: Double Plus Ungood

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Episode 1984: Double Plus Ungood

Villains shouldn't repeat the same mistakes. Often in fiction you'll find that they do, or that they repeat the mistakes of someone who went before them.

Let your villains learn from their mistakes, and the mistakes of others. If something went wrong last time, or the heroes exploited some weakness, have the villain correct the error, plug the hole in their plans, shore up the weakness to make certain it doesn't get used against them again.

It's only sensible. And we all know villains can be sensible, right?

aurilee writes:

Commentary by memnarch (who has not seen the movie)

Aha! Rey is a secret Jedi! Or... is going to be one in the future. If Luke actually gets found again seeing as the only other known Jedi died 30 years prior. And is fine with training someone come to bother him, even if they're family. And he also isn't dead already. Being a Force ghost might alleveate that somewhat, but Obi-Wan didn't seem like he was able to stick around much, which would make proper training difficult.

Technically that did work out well for Palpatine, it got Anakin to stop haunting him! Other than that, I'd thought this was a callback to Episode VI the movie (which wouldn't make any sense), but it turns out there was actually a scene that brought it up! That said, this feels a bit off as it's getting away from the Episode IV parallel of Rey needing training. Maybe that was intended to be an ongoing struggle across the movies instead of contained to a single movie like Luke had. I can see Disney wanting another movie series-spanning set-up like the MCU, even if it might be a little complicated for the immediate viewing audience.

I bet Kylo doesn't completely follow Snoke's instructions here for finding and killing Rey; it'd be much easier for Kylo to get back at Nute (or the movie-equivalent) by having Rey kill Snoke off, then killing Rey. After that, Kylo can stage a takeover of the First Order from this giant figurehead. This might not be a good plan to follow, but Kylo does like bad plans after all.

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Episode 1983: Passive-Aggressive Snoking

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Episode 1983: Passive-Aggressive Snoking

If you want to give a PC a serious chewing out from some superior NPC, try having the player play the role of the NPC who is doing the chewing out. Tell them that the superior is super angry with them, and for them to really let themselves have it. The player will not feel they have be restrained in any way and they also won't feel bad about having you yell at them. And they might really get a kick out of it too!

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aurilee writes:

Commentary by memnarch (who has not seen the movie)

It's surprisingly easy to misplace planets in this universe. First there was Kamino, now we have Ahch-To. Perhaps the Peace Moon as well, though that one might not count as most people seem to have just left it behind and didn't have much reason to return. And Sally was involved with or played the characters for all of those too!

Also wow, that middle panel. Snoke already looked ginormous, but that gives an actual view to reference height. Snoke's gotta be like the size of the Rancor! The background looks much more defined here too. I'd originally thought this was a rather plain looking cave, but now it's looking more impressive. The blocky constructs make me think of a boss area as well.

Hmmm, I note that Snoke did quotes around the Lord part of Ren's name. Maybe Kylo is just a wannabe Darth Vader, who was an actual Sith Lord? There have been a lot of visuals that play that up, and Snoke here certainly looks like a remixed Emperor with the appearance and giant chair. Stereotypical villains like that don't seem like they would demand an in-person audience simply just for status updates or offering praise.

I bet Sally is getting lots of extra XP for this. Maybe even enough for another level!

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Episode 1982: Snoke Gets in Your Face

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Episode 1982: Snoke Gets in Your Face

Really throw yourself into roleplay acting.

Just be aware that some people throw a lot further than others.

aurilee writes:

Commentary by memnarch (who has not seen the movie)

MWAHAHA! Now that's a great villain rant. No way is that in the movie, being so close to the referenced quote, but it fits the lighting here so well! Dramatic acting is definitely a good way to impress the other players. This'll probably also go over well with Annie's video viewers as well!

Cataclysm Beam sounds very impressive, though it's lacking that alliterative appeal for the name for me. Maybe something like the Cataclysm Cannon if that's not been used before. Coming up with new names for characters or things is difficult for me, so I can't quite imagine how difficult it would be for companies to come up with names that are both good and still free to trademark for marketing use. (I am assuming this isn't a Peace Moon/Darths comic original name mind you.)

I'm guessing this "Death Star v3" weapon either fires through hyperspace or is capable of destroying whole solar systems somehow. Maybe both! Large moons not being exceptionally mobile, a new superweapon like that would definitely be a secret worth keeping from the Resistance when they're squarely in the crosshairs of the first/second use.

Oh! And maybe this is also why testing was being done on that new hyperdrive modulator! A whole moon would be very easy to block hyperjumps for, but it would also have the mass to basically shrug off any small impacts from hitting things! Being able to move the Cataclysm weapon could allow it to essentially snipe targets across the galaxy without being attacked like the first and second Death Stars.

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Episode 1981: Hux to be You

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Episode 1981: Hux to be You

Evil superiors should always berate their minions. It's part of what makes them evil.

Good superiors only berate their minions some of the time.

Seriously though, you can mix this up a bit. Imagine a good king, who is actually good in all the normal ways—compassionate, kind, wise, fair, looks after all of his subjects not just the rich ones—but who constantly berates his staff. Apart from that he's the ideal king. It's just if you work for him, he gets on your case all the time. He's not evil in any sense, he just has interpersonal skill problems.

Or what about the evil overlord who really cares about and looks after his minions, while plotting to murder people and conquer the world.

NPCs are often portrayed as one-dimensional stereotypes. But try stirring the pot a little.

Keybounce writes:

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aurilee writes:

Commentary by memnarch (who has not seen the movie)

Haha, Sally's definitely playing up the snark here! Not that the First Order looks like they have much in the way of secrets to keep at the moment except maaaybe Nute's existence, but Hux/Ben is a bit too much of a straight man to snark back with that fact.

I wonder what exactly Snoke brings to the table. While large, they seem kind of deformed and/or stuck to the chair. The head scar looks like it's the result of brain surgery of some kind. They don't have any technology screens in front of them. If Snoke is meant to be the Emperor equivalent of the sequel triology, then he'd have Force powers at least. Maybe we'll see some evidence of that soon.

As for double agent Finn, I wonder what kind of new plan Snoke will come up to salvage the original plan of Finn and Poe watching each other. Communications can be intercepted, so there won't be much either direction that the Resistance could miss. Kylo and Hux probably should have arranged a secure dead drop location set up to be able to give orders and receive intel. Or, if they do have one, pointed out the use there to Snoke as a success in their favor.

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Episode 1980: The Moon is a Lost Fortress

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Episode 1980: The Moon is a Lost Fortress

If one of your players is a natural for a particular NPC you have in mind, why not let them play the role? Write up a few character personality notes, and an outline of what their dialogue is without giving too much away, and let them go for it!

aurilee writes:

Commentary by memnarch (who has not seen the movie)

Aha! I thought it was a little strange to have the game be the First Order versus the Resistance; the Resistance must be the remnant of the New Republic! And if Nute was working on keeping things a secret, the Galaxy is a pretty big place and it would have been simple for a virtual ghost in the Cloud to delete any references to the Peace Moon or block communications about it.

I think this will be quite interesting as well. We already know that Kylo did not take the news about needing to report to Snoke well; Snoke may or may not hate Kylo back. If Hux gets caught in the crossfire and ends up dead, I don't think I'll be surprised, but I hope that's not the case. Pete seems pleased that the other side is getting privileged character info at least!

And wow, a literal giant person in Star Wars. At least, they kind of look like a giant. I suppose this could be a Wizard of Oz scenario with Snoke as a construct being puppeted behind the scenes but that doesn't feel like Star Wars. Of course, I would have said the same before the Aliens-movie-like scene with the Rathtars, so maybe that's how this is actually going to go.

The lighting here seems a bit odd as it looks like Kylo and Hux are standing on a flat surface in panel 2, but then the circle appears elevated in the third panel. There's also the nice line of red lights level with the surface but they're nowhere to be seen in the last panel. I hope this made more sense to someone who's seen the movie as this feels like I'm missing a detail or few about the room here. (Reminder: don't actually tell me what that might be.)

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Episode 1979: Missing the Forest for the Peace

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Episode 1979: Missing the Forest for the Peace

Dropping clues about some important plot point in your adventure is a good way to reveal information. Because if the players work it out for themselves, they feel really clever.

And if they don't work it out, you can reveal it yourself and then point out all the clues you gave them and how clever you are for making it all seem obvious in hindsight.

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aurilee writes:

Commentary by memnarch (who has not seen the movie)

Oh snap! That's a ginormous construction! And excavation! This might be even bigger than the second Death Star Peace Moon space station! Good thing there's forcefields and other such technology to maintain a useful atmosphere! I bet it would be quite uncomfortable outside any special built living areas though.

And it totally makes sense that Endor the Forest Moon was what was turned into the Peace Moon. Forests wouldn't be as useful for large scale commerce exchange and Nute is, or at least was, all about increasing profits. There's so much on the comic side to speculate on here from this and there's been foreshadowing for it too! I bet the ecosystem has been totally disturbed though!

Movie-wise; wow. It's seemed like Episode VII has been trying to be bigger or more impressive than any of the original or prequel movies, so I really should have expected something like this making an appearance. I wonder if Kylo Ren is going to have another temper problem and end up destroying something important with that hole that looks like a giant weapon muzzle. Maybe Tatooine will get blown up as another Episode IV parallel.

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