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Second Session
(AP, long)

So, yesterday we had the second session and it flowed a lot better. Initiative wasn’t much used (no actual "combat" scene at all), but all the talking we had in the week and the agreements we made worked to keep the pace going and everyone happy, or at least happy enough (a good start nonetheless). Our friend from abroad was on vacation so there was no side-game with him; another one that has the Failed Jedi PC couldn’t make it; but we included another friend that was at the house as a guest appearance of sorts.
In the middle I hesitated again with something that was troubling me: whether to make certain they get at least some clues, sort of a menu in fact, of moves to play next; or let fate decide, including the possibility of them having no idea where to go next... In the end I settled for (after succesful rolls) showing them most of my annotations. A buffett style of choices is pretty much the same as freedom, so the concept of sandbox-game was saved (IMO).
After the game was over we used the CP rewards as written but we mostly disliked them, so we might agree to change them to a proposal I had earlier: using The Shadow of Yesterday’s style Keys, albeit we don’t know if awarded instantly (as they work in that game and similar ones) or after the game is done as usual.


The blaster fight at the Astromech Emporium was over. The traitorous double-agent had dropped his weapon, and the stormtroopers realized they may be a few more, but they were trapped in the building, surrounded by the rebels. This was all eloquently pointed out by captain Malkmus, the former imperial and now rebel leader; who persuaded them to drop their weapons too and walk out peacefully.
But peaceful wasn’t good enough for our enraged wookie Darrukwo, who entered the room and wrecked the interrogation droid that was hurting their local rebel comrade; but luckily the droid’s memory bank was saved from destruction.
Among that chaos, the rebels heard their ride starting the engines, carrying their precious cargo of droids with them; but H’a Krim, the filvian technician, managed to stop him and convince him it was just a minor trouble with some burglars, nothing to run away from. And also, falling from a ventilation vent came Chaar Li, a local rebel human that hid during the shootout and had lots to explain about how the traitor had infiltrated them.
Meanwhile Malkmus took the imperial squad leader, JC2864, to a side and began a frank talk: why stick with the losing side? Was all that loyalty worth it in the end, now with the Emperor gone?
Reflecting upon that, and tired of playing along the ISB’s sick orders, JC2864 became “JoCé” and joined the Rebellion, followed, perhaps reluctantly, by the remainder of his squad.
The twi’lek rebel (and one of the stormtroopers) get medpack’ed back to consciousness, but explained he wasn’t the cell’s head, so his intel was minimal.
They were all about to leave… but still the question remained about what to do with the imperial double-agent that had betrayed them. Poom Vahom, our duros pilot, had known the guy from their shared childhood at Molavar, so he tried to turn him into a triple-agent instead of killing him; but the cunning imperial was a good liar and so he became… a quadruple agent!

The rebels take anything that isn’t bolted to the floor (speeders, credits, the C1 droid that saved them before, and everyone still breathing) and ride back to their ship, to analize the stolen memory and plan their next moves. But as they’re passing the valley’s main square; they see the imperial forces had sandwiched the people celebrating the Emperor’s downfall between stormtrooper squads and AT-DPs: something bad is about to happen. Using C1-B8 superior communication expertise, they hack into the Imperial comms frequency and con the imperial forces to stand down – at least in this valley.

Now finally back with everything and everyone on their ship (thanks to the Wayfarer’s large cargo pod) the filvian starts decrypting the copy of the IT droid’s memory and correlate it with the C1’s log of rebel transmissions, to gain some clues and perhaps contacts with the rebel (or anti-imperial at least) forces in the sector.
But the imperial agent is called on his comlink by his superiors asking for a de-briefing of the assault to the rebel command. The traitor seems to play along and pass a convenient lie to the Empire, but Chaar Li sees over the ruse and, having seen the man’s methods during a year of patient infiltration, start to pick up certain code-words... he’s betraying them again!
Quick and resolute, the rebel fires a blast at his hand, and both the comlink and a few of his fingers are gone, before fainting on to the table.
After the commotion, the rebels vote whether to execute him or keep him as prisoner. Not counting the now-rebel stormtroopers, the force-sensitive H’a Krim is confident on the pacifist choice to win; and returns to work on the droid’s memory… but the stormtroopers speak the language of violence and almost all of them vote for their former boss execution. When the filvian is informed of the violent outcome, his turmoil between his values is evident but chooses democracy over the Force… and feels the stain of darkness growing inside him (gains 1 DSP). What’s worse, Vahom is tired of all this nonsense and hurt at his friend’s betrayal, so even against their agreement he goes for the kill instantly, not even letting the condemned be aware of his final fate.

Chaar Li decides to stay in Rishi (our friend had to leave) so he goes back to the Astromech Emporium and disposes quietly of the body; and H’a Krim resumes his work.
After a few more hours he achieves it: now the Rebels have a panoply of different contacts throughout the sector, from partisan swoop gangs in Molavar to dissident academics in Gibad’s university, and from a battered down starfighter base in Intuci to the Jenet’s many (27!) infighting groups of anti-Imperial saboteurs.

After some deliberation, the Rebels fly to Intuci well below the Empire’s faulty sensors; and after some impressive jungle maneuvering with such large ship, they meet with the devaronian “commander”, not more than a kid actually.
They’re unimpressed with the base too: only some Z-95 and even older ships, and two Y-Wings in need of repairs remain after a disastrous run against an imperial convoy; manned by a handful of young pilots and technicians under makeshift tents, all hiding deep in the equatorial jungles of the planet.
Still, they get to work on completing the repairs (although with some unknown side effects on the ships maneuver thrusters) and run some advanced training on the pilots.
After a few days at it, they boost their listening antenna and pick up the public frequencies to see what has happened while they were in hiding: after the first day of confusion, the Moff has strengthened his hold on the sector by a show of force; with even one Destroyer showing up on Garbad to squash down the Jenet’s uprising…
The rebels take a long, long night discussing their next moves: this jungle camp is not good enough as a fully-fledged rebel base, but where else could they settle to avoid the Empire’s eyes? Which of the many anti-Imperial factions makes sense to go rally first? Should they go the the criminal underworld for a boost in resources? Should they choose open warfare, look for the restoration of institutions, attempt to drive a wedge amongst the imperials now fighting for control? If all of that, in what order?

Having settled on at least one move forward; they leave the rebel stormtroopers and most of the droids at the jungle settlement, take a Z-95 and the helpful C1 droid; and take off towards Varristad, a dome-dotted mining planet owned by the Offworld Corp. Perhaps the undergroud union of disgruntled workers could be a good ally to start a sector-wide rebellion...

Making some real-life sense out of the Space Unit
(warning: long post)

What follows is my attempt of trying to understand what a Space Unit is, and more specifically, how Sensors would work for patrolling in such a vast galaxy. I know it's totally against the intent of the game ("don't bother with real units of measurement, speeds and range happen at the plot's convenience") but I wanted to have a concrete idea in order to run a true sandbox style game where the Empire needs to cover their bases from the Rebel Scum, and the way sensors range and speed correlate makes absolutely no sense to me.

Is all this necesary? Of course not; if you're happy with winging it as the game clearly is meant to be played, by all means carry on.
But I like this kind of nerdy number-crunching so if you're like me and want scaled space maps and consistent travel times, follow me down this rabbit hole...

We have two conflicting sources that we could use to correlate SUs with real, metric units: the targeting computer in the Death Star attack run; and the ranges of orbital weapons like the KDY v-150 Ion Cannon from Hoth. They give two very different measurements:

-If you freeze-frame it, the X-Wing targeting computer changes 120 "somethings" per frame during the attack run; we can assume they're meters as that unit is used in the Galaxy too (the size of the exhaust port is given in meters). We hear Luke say they go "Full Throttle" as to keep the TIE fighters at a distance, so that's our in-game All-Out Speed, or 32 SUs per five-second turn for an X-Wing's base Speed of 8. Doing the math (120x24x5/32) gives you that each Space Unit is just 450 meters long.
I find that number consistent with the kind of motion we see in space battles: it takes a cruising X-Wing 1,6s to go pass a Mon Cal cruiser, or 2,2 to pass a Star Destroyer (more likely 1,1s going at High Speed, unless they like to be shot at) and it would take said X-Wing 32,9 game turns (174,4 seconds, almost 3 minutes) to do a full circle in the Death Star equatorial trench (not the trench they attack, btw).

However, this is insanely low if we're to believe the intra-system traveling times we're given in the book; and to measure the sensors in the same range it would make them tiny little bubbles around each ship, absolutely incapable of detecting anything in the vastness of space until it's a few turns away from attacking said ship, let alone patrol succesfully...

-Enter the Ion Cannon, and other "surface-to-space" artillery we're given in Hideouts & Strongholds. They give out ranges in the form "Atmosphere/Low Orbit (1)/High Orbit (3)", where the numbers are supposed to correlate to SUs if running a space battle next to a planet.
We can take our real planet Earth (which is probably what the game designers had in mind anyway) for ranges of each three: Earth's atmosphere is conventionally capped at the 100km line; Low Earth Orbit is the 2000km range; and High Orbit is defined as anything that's above 36000km (rounded up). Of course, Low and High Orbit don't match on a 3 to 1 proportion, so we need to choose one: we can take High Orbit for our measurements, and chalk the Low Orbit discrepancy to our primitive Earth's tech or something.
So we get that in this case, a Space Unit is a whopping 12000km wide. Now that's a number that would make sense for sensors...

And what's best, I've been pairing it with real distances in the Solar System and it fits perfectly with the travel times we have; not to mention with Earth's diameter (12.600km) which would fit quite neatly in a one-SU box. The Sun is 116 SUs wide, the distance from Earth to the Moon is just 32 SUs; there's 12500 SUs from Earth to the Sun (i.e. the Astronomical Unit - and there's that 12000 number again!); and 625000 SUs from the Sun to the edge of the Solar System...
Those numbers may look big, but then we divide them by the 720xSpeed SUs a ship can go per hour and they fit right into what we know. For example a Star Destroyer at High Speed (12 SUs per turn) would make the average distance from the Earth to Mars (19000 SUs) in 3:51 hours, or just from here to the Sun in 1:26 hours, and from there (if it hasn't exploded from the heat) to the edge of the system in three days (72 hs) and 20 minutes.
The odd ones out are the travel times to a planet's satelites; which by this logic would be made in mere seconds (32 SUs to the Moon, or for example Jupiter-Ganimedes at 89 SUs) but those times could be explained as taking more to take-off/land and accelerate/deccelerate than to traverse the distance; just like short flights in airplanes today. Those could be considered absolute time minimums regardless of space distance...
If you're just flying past by the side, then yes, an X-Wing would make it in 5 or 10 or 20 or 40 seconds depending on the speed chosen.

And another neat thing: we can calculate the speed of light in this system (25 SUs per second; 125 per turn) and see that even the fastest ships in the Galaxy are quite safely below the 40% mark (50 SUs per turn).

Anyway, so what to make of this two very different measurement of Space Units?

We can have a two-tier system of distances: one for dogfights and bombing runs and battle-station desperate attacks; and another one for sensors and intra-system realspace travel. The discrepancy could be explained very easily: you wouldn't want to pass the entire battlefield in less than a milisecond! Ships would work on two "modes": accelerate greatly when traveling through known, safe space (if not jumping to hyperspace already); and then deccelerate to manageable speeds to maneuver in battle or land on a planet.
Sensors (and orbital artillery) work on very long distances to accomodate the fact that ships can travel at such great speeds; but still, even the best sensor package aboard a ship only works on the whereabouts of a single planet, maybe less if it's a gas giant (Jupiter's last satellite, the tiny rock called Carpo, is at 1417 SUs). Even the Death Star's powerful sensors, if standing right now next to Earth IRL, could not pick up stuff going on near Jupiter, as the DS sensor Search range is exactly 4 times the Earth-to-Sun distance (neat!).
When in battle-range, ships can use their powerful sensors for much deeper probing of a ships contents (like the time the Imperials scanned "no-life forms" on the Tantive IV scape pod). And during battles, we now know that capital ships measure around to 3 or 4 SUs long (18 in case of such massive ones as the Executor SSD), so we can run space combats to scale for maneuvering and fire ranges.

Anyway, what do you think? Was anyone else interested in this kind of accuracy for their games?
Yes, I do have lots of spare time in my hands (I'm on vacations)...

First Session.

So, we played friday night and it went... bad. We were trying house-rules for initiative that were about speeding the game up but had the exact opposite effect of dragging it painfully down.
That paired with the inadequacy of my GMing style with their expectations or game system knowledge: we ended up having way too much "meta" talks explaining or trying to make sense f the rules and how to connect the players intents to game mechanics, instead of making the game move forward.
I don't like to GM as an authority over my players; my ideal gaming tables are a consensus based democracy. But that only works (it does, I've seen it happen) when everyone is on the same page and knows the rules as good as me or close; and doesn't expect the other, more typical GMing style of "I tell you a number and what to roll, I'm the authority here".

Anyway, it all meant a very slow and grinded experience. Still, everyone's interested enough to continue playing, so at least at some point they were enjoying it... My other friend from another city wasn't available yet so I played his character as a helpful NPC aiding from within the Empire.

The good news is that we took a long chat afterwards; everyone's expectations and likes/dislikes are in the open now and we're making middle-ground agreements (return to the game's Initiative system, quicker-paced rulings, faster "color" or side scenes) that I'm hopeful will speed up the game.

The PCs got together on the Liberty, in orbit around recently liberated Sullust. They were holo-briefed by Mon Mothma, asking everyone except a few to go back to their home sectors and "see what they can do" back there; as the Rebellion is about to gamble almost all it has on Endor...
They get some supplies, weapons, and a cargo of stolen droids in order to look like real merchants and resell them for some credits to fund their op; and a passphrase and location to contact the Sector Command on Rishi.

Once in the sector, they see the Empire is patrolling with heavier forces than normal; but they fast-talk their way as real traders and continue to the planet. They're greeted by a H'kig follower that explains their rules to be on Rishi, rent a skiff to shuttle the droids around and head to their meeting point.
They see a very heated situation is unfolding, people running around, stormtroopers nervous about how to react... and stop to check on a rodian showing everyone a holovid: it's shows the destruction of the Death Star and Leia's speech proclaiming the death of the Emperor and a call to arms. Riots are a definite posibility.
They still continue towards their Sector Command, now to join forces and organize something to seize the upcoming chaos.
But they're greeted by a ISB double agent posing as a Rebel, and bite the bait whole; they're only saved by a C1 model astrodroid that receives a message from their secret ally within the Empire and starts frantically beeping to warn them. Once a pair of stormtroopers come out from the back of the building all hell breaks loose and the blasterfight begins; in the heat of the battle they discover there's a whole squad back there, torturing a twi'lek that seems to be their actual Rebel contact...

And that was all. The firefight scene dragged so much out that we didn't even finished it; we'll see how we wrap it up next session. I'm hopeful it will all go on smoothly next time(s).

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I'm not sure if this is 100% game related or not; but here goes (I can delete if not).
Regarding the "hyperspace travel times" controversy, I just found almost by accident that the shorter times have been in the new canon since, at least, two and a half years ago.
Answering a fan question on this video, Pablo Hidalgo says Luke and Leia are born two days after Papatine's speech creating the Empire.
That means that in the space of roughly 48 hours you need time to squeeze almost the entirety of the final act of Episode III; including travel times from Coruscant to Mustafar, and then a shorter trip to Polis Massa (not to mention allowing some time for Obi-Wan and Anakin's, hmm, "little misunderstanding")

Honestly, this doesn't bother me at all since I always thought those travel durations were silly, and unlikely from everything we saw in the movies (from the group dynamic we see on the Falcon that in no way indicates such a long trip, to how impossible would be for the Empire to react to an attack with that lag, to how the hell would fighter pilots survive a weeks long trip in that cockpit...) But I still wanted to share my discovery here so the "blame" doesn't fall entirely on TLJs script...

To come back to game terms a little bit: I'm re-thinking my astrogration time house-rules to adequate them to this, but considering that a standard hyperdrive should take, at the most, a few days to travel the entire galaxy on well known routes...


So, my first question regarding my post-Empire campaign. I'm creating my setting files for the Abrion Sector, and one thing that troubles me is that this is the only known way into the Rishi Maze, a.k.a. where Kamino is.

So, both from a canonical (new canon, non-UE) and game-mechanics perspective: how would you limit that fact so the cloning world isn't a main factor in the game? How do you imagine the Empire deals with controlling Kamino as the time of Endor and beyond?

What I got so far is:
a) It's a hell of an astrogration feat to get there (Heroic dif. to say the least)
b) The Empire keeps a sensors/comm station on the Rishi moon just for this purpose (as seen and destroyed in Clone Wars; but I guess they'd rebuilt it).
c) I'd assume that after they went for non-clone stormtroopers; they would heavily restrict the Kaminoan's ability to do business and even keep a garrison there.

What do you think?

So, first post here.

First off, tons of thanks to the people keeping the flame alive: the REUP team (I just read they're not around here anymore, but still), +Andrew Zavadin for keeping, Oliver Queen (your Rebels sourcebook saved me a TON of work) and everyone else statting stuff, and generally contributing to the community... For a long time I've been silently using your contributions so big thanks to you all.

1st Edition was my first ever RPG book 20 years ago; then I played tons of online play by forum games during the 90s; gamed this puppy a lot, then moved to other games... but always kept this close to my heart.

For a ton of years (six? Eight?) I've been thinking about making a specific kind of campaign: the fight for a specific Sector between the Rebellion and the Imperials as the Empire falls. For years I've been absorbing every bit of detail about the Sector I chose; and now, after the hype got back with the new movies and all, I convinced my gaming group to try it out; starting this Friday. I even have a long distance player from another city running a connected side-story of an Imperial turncoat giving data to the local Rebels... via Whatsapp audio-messages.

We'll play a sandbox style REUP (albeit quite house-ruled) game inspired by Rogue One and the less campy side of Rebels: The Liberation of Abrion Sector.
The PCs are members of the Alliance High Command/Fleet/Special Forces that get sent back to their home sector of Abrion when the Rebellion is about to gamble it all on Endor: if the attack fails, to spread out to avoid retaliation, and if it works, to help liberating their own place. The first session will be the time where the Sector finds out at large about the outcome of the Battle of Endor... and the ensuing chaos it brings on the Imperial ranks, all while the PCs are trying to reconnect with their sector command...

Anyway, I have no questions for now (but I sure will in the future), I just wanted to join in and share my excitement.

Good games and MTFBWY!

Review in spanish // Reseña en español.

In Argentina's Foro DeRol we have a section called "Game of the Month", in which we showcase different games to amplify our members' awareness of the myriad of choices this awesome hobby has. This time (following my reception of the books, finally), it was the turn for FATE Core and Accelerated to shine there, complete with - bad - pictures and all.
So if you happen to read in spanish, come take a look!

Edit: Forgot the link!

I'm rereading my copy, while thinking in running Star Wars with as little change possible from the RAW (Yes, I've read Ryan's hack; and other conversions). So that got me thinking: ¿why choosing a conflict type?

Take the climatic lightsaber duels in SW V and VI... It's as much physical as it is emotional: the characters are fighting and attempting to convince the other at the same time; using physical hits to help their words and their words to help their fight...

Would it break the game in a way I'm not seeing if we just played them as "conflicts", without distinction? You could rule that initiative is mixing Notice and Empathy, but you're bound by what you chose for the exchange (can't use a higher Empathy to kick someone). And the nature of the attack would dictate the stress track where damage goes, and so...

What do you think?

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And finally, the blue wave reaches Buenos Aires, Argentina.
(Could've been thursday, but the guys at Customs must have wanted to get some games out of it too).
Can't wait to spring it into action...
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