[Primetime Adventures] Star Wars: The Sith Triumvirate – Webisode
After playing the first regular episode for about 2 1/2 hours, and knowing I would be flying back to Miami in a few days, everyone agreed to push ahead and play another episode, even though it was just shy of Midnight. A bathroom break later, we sat down to play. This episode was the Enforcer’s character spotlight episode.
Season 1, Webisode
I dove right into the thick of things, riding on the momentum of the previous episode, and used the Archivist’s Next Time On scene to open. As he looked out the observation deck of his Death Star, a contingent of Storm Troopers surrounded him, while one of his officers asked him to please not make this difficult. Because of the time they had served the Sith Lord, the officer was willing to let him go if he did it in the next 5 seconds. The Archivist pondered for a moment, and as he was about to accept the offer, one of the Storm Troopers started to count. Big mistake. The Archivist called a conflict to deal with these traitorous scum; he won, easily (I didn’t provide much opposition either, just enough to get some Fan Mail on the table), leading to his Next Time On moment as he Force-choked the officer whom he had give explicit orders to not be disturbed. The deed done, and knowing he had just signed his own warrant, the Archivist engaged the Death Star’s auto-destruct, though not before using the station’s laser to obliterate the cloning facility on the planet below, along with a good chunk of the planet itself.
Miles away, we see the Bounty Hunter enter a familiar cantina in the forest planet of Tattooine. He walks up to a booth where the cyborg Chodox Fett sits patiently, waiting. The two nod and get right into small talk while avoiding the real reason for their meeting. Eventually the Bounty Hunter gets to the point and asks Chodox to come to Lady Fett as she has requested. We enter a conflict, one which I make fairly difficult on my end. The Bounty Hunter loses and Chodox says that his place right now is with those who are working to set things right and bring back peace and order. He will sacrifice family honor and seeing Lady Fett for that. As the Bounty Hunter is about to leave, he asks Chodox, what about the Mandalorians? Do you still have that in your blood? Chodox replies that in due time, yes, especially if the Mandalorians could be brought to fight on his side.
One of the members of the Audience called for a scene showing the history of Chodox and Lady Fett, so I quickly narrated a flashback montage showing a young Chodox and a dark-haired beauty very much in love; him in uniform, her in royal regalia; Chodox in a flight-suit kissing her goodbye and boarding a transport shuttle; Chodox in a starfighter cockpit being a cocky S.O.B. as he brings down scores of TIE Fighters; then a lucky shot, a look of terror, an explosion; the lady standing by a bacta tank, Chodox floating inside, large portions of his body mangled; Chodox on a bed, alone, rage in his one visible eye, a terse “Do it!”; the lady recoiling in horror as we see the fully cyborg, and emotionally dead, Chodox Fett.
The next scene finds the Enforcer arriving at Coruscant where he is immediately attacked by three clones of himself. He calls a conflict to find out who sent them; he wins the conflict but I win narration, so he kills the clones without a problem, finds a Sith hiding nearby who reveals that the Sith Council itself sent him to make sure the clones they dispatched did the job. As the Enforcer kills the other Sith, the scene takes on the look of a hologram as the camera pulls back to reveal various members of the Sith Council watching the events, among them Lord Vader and Lady Valmira. The Enforcer, right in the open of Coruscant, four bodies around him, contacts Lady Valmira to meet him at the place they know about.
The scene changes to a natural cave that serves as a trophy room, scores of lightsabers lining up the walls, a brazier in the center casting a flickering light. A secret panel swishes open and Lady Valmira enters, chiding the Enforcer for having contacted her from such an open position when she specifically asked him to do it when he was safely in hiding. The Enforcer replies that he is neither running nor hiding. She pleads with him to please leave Coruscant and find somewhere to hide, at least while this cools off and he’s not being actively hunted. The Enforcer repeats that he is not going to hide at all, and Valmira once again asks him to please do so, appealing to his emotions. “If what we had to together meant something…” The Enforcer stops her cold, and asks her to spit out all she knows, calling for a conflict to get the information he wants to hear out of Valmira.
The Enforcer used everything he had: all three of his Edges, four Fan Mail tokens, and lobbied to have the other players support him, which they did not, siding with the Producer to make things tough for him. Add to that my four Budget tokens, and the Enforcer was overwhelmed, easily 4- or 5-to-1. He explicitly states that, if he wins, he wants it to be that he had rendezvoused with Lady Vader, spirited her away from the Palace and the threat posed by her brother, Lord Vader, but that she was now missing, captured once more by Lord Vader and his lackey, Lady Valmira. It’s a good turn of events to go for. But the Enforcer, not surprisingly, looses the conflict and narration, so I go to town.
As the Enforcer tells Valmira to speak what she knows, we hear a communicator somewhere on her say, in the voice we know to be Lord Vader’s, “Kill him.” The two ex-lovers fight, but the Enforcer is clearly the better of the two, and a few seconds later, he plunges his lightsaber into Valmira’s heart. Her last words, “She doesn’t love you, I do.” Or something like that; the Enforcer, in his rage, has given in to the Dark Side and barely pays attention. He marches into the tunnel leading to the Sith Palace above, dispatching Storm Troopers that never had any inkling of what killed them. As he reaches the palace proper, he sees Sith of all ranks running about, clearly on the lookout for him. For a moment he regains his common sense, and decides to fight this battle another day. Going back into the tunnels he fights a couple of apprentices, barely slowing down as he shows them how unready they still were. As he passes the body of Valmira in the trophy cave, he sees a small holopad peeking out from a pocket. He takes it and leaves, going back to his ship and leaving Coruscant. Once in space, he inspects the holopad. A small hologram of Lord Vader appears and tells Lady Valmira to make sure the Lady is secured in her location and to kill, by any means necessary, her cohort before continuing with the plan.
[Fade to black]
It would turn out that we would not play a full episode since the store we were playing in was closing (it was about 1:30 AM). Since we only played one round, we ended up referring to this session as a webisode, a sort of teaser for the next full episode, thus why there are no Next Time On.
In all honesty, I’m glad we didn’t get a chance to play the full episode, because by this point I was tired and running out of ideas. The Enforcer in particular, was giving me trouble; since this was to be his spotlight episode, I wanted to help him bring his issue loud and clear to the forefront, but I, and the other players, kept running into a wall with most of the suggestions we threw out for scenes and scene resolutions. I didn’t see it at the moment, and it wasn’t until I was chatting with my friend Braulio as he drove me home that it all clicked, that we made the realization why I was having trouble. I was trying to bring forward the wrong issue.
The Enforcer’s issue, as stated on his character sheet, is about vengeance against the Jedi for the death of his father, but every action, every decision, (most importantly) every conflict the Enforcer has been involved in, they have all been about Lady Vader. Heck, all his Edges are about Lady Vader, to hell with his dead father! It was all staring me right in the face, but I was looking at the wrong part. I got too focused on the Issue at the top of the page, and forgot to see the rest of the parts; when you combine the Edges plus the in-game events, it is clear as day that the problem is that, regardless of what he may have written as his Issue, the *real* Issue for this character is Lady Vader, and his relationship (whatever that may be) with her. The Enforcer wants to kill Lord Vader and end up with Lady Vader – that is his Issue. Perhaps he wants to be the new Lord Vader, one by marriage, not by blood bonds?
I have to give heaps of praise upon the other players, because they did their job fantastically in supporting the spotlight character, both in game by framing scenes that were about the Enforcer, and as players by supporting his conflicts in order to help him he awesome. It was truly a perfect example of cooperative and supporting roleplaying.
I hope to go back to Puerto Rico in June, and if I do, we’ll try to get together to play the conclusion to this series (even if it means merging episodes – we can say the network wants the series to be shorter and more explosive to truly capture the audience and sponsors). Keep an eye out!
A taste of things to come…