May 2, 2013
A Look At The Fluff Of Star Wars: Saga Edition
In celebration of “May the Fourth be with You,” redOrbit is hosting a series of Star Wars-inspired blogs.
To put it simply, the fluff of Star Wars: Saga Edition is all of the Star Wars universe. The game allows you to play in any era; from the Old Republic to the New Jedi Order, though most games I have been involved in focus on the battle against the Empire, taking place during the same time frame as the original three movies. As fun as it is to run with the same crowd as Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and the rest of the big names of the original movies, the biggest problem I have run into when playing in such games is that there seems to be a paralyzing fear to break cannon. Everyone knows how Darth Vader meets his end, and because of that many Gamemasters are reluctant to give players a shot at taking care of the Dark Lord of the Sith themselves. This fear rarely stops them from throwing him into the games, however, as I can count at least five different occasions of having my characters run into him.
My favorite era of play would be the Old Republic, made famous my BioWare‘s video games Knights of the Old Republic and Knights of the Old Republic II – the Sith Lords, as well as the MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic. Why? Because during that time there was no real shortage of Jedi and Sith to engage with, allowing players to play the part of Jedi Knights without having to come up with some contrived reason to have Jedi around during the Empire era who aren’t names Kenobi or Skywalker. It also removes the “more special than special” emphasis on Jedi characters and their role within the scope of the game. Jedi are just another option for players, after all, there is no reason that every story needs to focus on them and their choice to fall to the Dark Side or go with the Light. The Knights of the Old Republic source book was my favorite of all those released for Saga Edition, and I consider it a must for anyone interested in the game.
The only real problem that I have with playing a game based in the Star Wars universe is that I am not an expert in all things Star Wars. I like the movies just fine, at least the original three, and some of the books of the expanded universe were fun reads, but I have not read every book, watched every documentary, or sat through every episode of Star Wars: Clone Wars on Cartoon Network. Far from it, in fact. If it weren’t for earlier version of the game, I would have no idea who Mara Jade was, what fail-safes Emperor Palpatine had in motion for after his death, or how ridiculously powerful Luke Skywalker eventually became. While this isn’t usually a problem, I have had a few experiences where I have games with players who have. When they are the Gamemaster, I tend to be able to follow along with them, most of the time anyway, when they start bringing up things from the expanded universe. When I have been the Gamemaster, however, I have had players get frustrated when I do things “wrong” according to a cannon that I am not even aware of, and reminding them that only the movies are truly cannon does not make it any better. As such, I find it important to set some ground rules when playing Star Wars, especially if you plan on deviating from what has already been set.
Despite this, Star Wars: Saga Edition is a great game. I recommend it to any fan of Star Wars who has ever dreamed of having their own adventures “long ago, in a galaxy far, far away.”
Image Credit: Wizards of the Coast