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Scapino

Destroying the Players’ Ship?

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So my group is playing through “The Jewel of Yavin” right now. In the first act, they teamed up with Aris Shen immediately and are planning on double-crossing her father, keeping the heist money (minimum 200k credits) and the jewel for themselves, plus 30k credits from the Grand Prix.

Even if they give the gem to someone else, that still leaves them with a lot of money to split between them (at least 40k per player and most likely more). I’d rather that they not have that much money to spend since that would mean lots of high-powered weapons and armor. 

Plus, as of right now, their plan is to swipe the jewel and run from Bespin as soon as the heist is over. And I’d kind of like to have them stick around to face the folks that they’ve ripped off.

So this was my thought: at the end of Act 2, after they’ve gotten the gem, Aris would try to get them to bring him the gem. They’ll refuse (while giving some sort of excuse). So when they get to their ship to escape, it would blow up in front of them, thus stranding them on Bepsin to face the wrath of Aris Shen, Maria Grayson, and the Wing Guard.

Act 3 would become a story of finding their way off the planet. But then they could be encouraged to use their ill-gotten gains to buy a new ship, thus cutting down on their available cash.

My question is this: is destroying the players’ ship like this dirty pool? Having it destroyed in a space battle is one thing, but would this be okay?

I should probably note that they have their ship in the first place because they stole it from a bounty hunter (who they killed). So there’s no Obligation debt in play at all right now.

Thoughts?

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It could be perceived as a bit jerk-ish and a bit railroady by the GM.  But the way that you've laid it out could also be taken as part of the story too.  Hard to say without knowing your players.

I would say that you shouldn't worry too much about a pile of credits.  As long as you are enforcing rarity rolls (your players do have to roll to find gear right?) and mechanics checks for mods (it starts at 3 difficulty and only get's worse) they shouldn't get too out of hand.  It's also easy enough to have them restricted from bringing their uber weapons and armor on a mission depending on where it is.

Do you have something for them to spend credits on?  A heavy handed new ship is an option, but I'm sure that there's at least one player eyeing a fighter or some ship upgrades which can cost a fortune too.

As long as you can make it part of the story, like they were going to be double crossed and their ship blown up from the beginning then it can all work out but there may still be some resentment about not being able to keep their windfall.

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I think it would fit. According to the FFG source book, Arend would try to kill the players with a bomb planted in the vehicle that he was sending to pick them up. This was to mask his own involvement. But given that I’m pretty sure my players won’t board any vehicle sent by him, I figured that Arend would have a back-up plan in place.

I was also thinking of having him plant evidence that would make it look like the players are part of the Rebellion and on a mission to Bespin to blow something up (so that when the players survive the ship’s destruction, they can be labeled as terrorists). The fact that half the players are formally part of the Rebellion would make the whole situation that much trickier to navigate, especially since there’s an undercover ISB agent in the city.

tl;dr...I think narratively, blowing up their ship fits, I more concerned about being a jerky GM.

Edited by Scapino

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Arend definitely has backup plans in place. Assuming he did his research on the PCs, an alternative to blowing up the ship might be an anonymous tip to the Imperials about the PCs. The ISB would probably impound and move it to a military hanger, allowing you to set up a scene where the PCs think things are going great with their escape until they get to the hanger and their ship is simply -not there-.  They get ambushed by an ISB officer (with associated Stormtroopers) and hopefully put together they’ve been sold out (maybe officer has a datapad w/ their descriptions and notes on the tip).

My question is how are the PCs getting the auction credits? As written, the slice sends the credits off planet and the adventure talks about how it’s pretty tough/risky/impossible to divert the funds elsewhere on Cloud City without them being confiscated/locked down. If you’re giving it to them with Aris having her own account that’s fine but it still won’t be available while they’re on Bespin.

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My thought wan’t that they would have the credits on hand to buy a new ship on Bespin. Act 3 would be about dealing with Arend’s double cross and finding a way off the planet (either by selling the gem to Kaltho in exchange for passage or going to Lando or...). Buying a new ship would come after that.

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I’ve been giving it some more thought. I think I’m going to go with Hinklemar’s suggestion. I’ve been sowing seeds for an upcoming adventure for the past month or so, and I think “the big bad” from that adventure will be the one who moved their ship. But the signs will point to Arend, so they’ll have to untangle that web to find their ship.

Thanks for the help. I really appreciate it!

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I agree with many that it seems a little too far-fetched.  Just blowing up and whatnot.  Why not have NPCs watching the ship and if the PCs try to leave, a battle ensues.  If they defeat the odds and escape, of course there will be pursuit.  Of course there will be a dogfight.  If they get pasted, they get tractored back to dock.  If they miraculously escape, then fixing the incurred Hull Trauma is a great way to spend those ill-gotton gains.  

In my mind, it's important for them to know why they're under fire, and that their actions wrought these consequences.  But it's also important to be their greatest fan, and part of the reason people play in this system in this setting is to pull off nigh impossible feats and quip while doing it.  I would advise caution with too much punishment that comes in the form of "acts of GM."  How would the NPC handle this problem if they didn't trust the PCs?  What if the NPC did?  

 

 

 

 

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If you are keen on blowing up their ship and they are not super attached to it, you could set it up that they find a better ship to get off the planet at the end of the adventure.  This can make it seem like they are getting an upgrade while you are making sure they do what you need them to do.

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When my PCs got higher in XP and flush with credits, I had an old PC-now-NPC come by and "borrow" the ship, which set the stage for the next adventure where they have to borrow a slow freighter from a Hutt, deliver some cargo along a secret hyperspace route, and hopefully beat their pal to his destination.   As the old saying goes, take those lemons and make lemonade.  

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The only way I would condone this is if there's a better and free replacement ship waiting for them. Otherwise, unless you are 100% certain that all of your players would be okay with it, I would discourage it because you're removing player agency.*

 

*Yes, technically, the ship isn't a player but it's an extension of the players.

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How about a situation where it becomes a narrow escape for them, but they must leave the loot behind. Either the situation unfolds and it becomes obvious they must choose between the loot and their lives, or the situation is so chaotic that once they're away they realize they left the loot behind or someone else has made off with it.

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Or you know, let them keep their money, but have a large obligation leverage assigned against them depending on how they chose to deal with the situation: E.g. they are rich, but now they have to deal with the consequences of being on the run from a sociopaths and probably Bespin will issue an bounty on them, which may create complications that would warrent the expenditure.

Otherwise encourage them to invest their money elsewhere, it's a prime opperuntiy to set up a homested or a crime/smuggling syndicate or something, something larger then the individual.

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After clearing it with my players, I had a czerka hit squad gunning for one of the players (Tal Lee/Seario) who was the orphaned (parents were assassinated) previously presumed dead rightful heir to a 10% share in czerka, blow up their ship a highly modified (hybridized/better of each except for enc yt-2400/loronar E9) loronar E9, while they were on planet in the middle of a a tapani sector ship show.   The impulse bought a highly modified  (better stats of an AoR corebook consular and raider 2, with high output ion turbines so speed 5) consular light cruiser (because i could get a deckplan from colonial chrome and a "republic cruiser" wotc starship battles miniature) from the collectors portion of the show for about 5.5 million credits using Tal's father's nearly unlimited funds credit stick which they'd previously avoided using because it would alert czerka to their location but since they'd already been found there was no downside to using it at the moment.  Anyway their old ship the loronar E9 blew up when the pilot used her beckon call to start their ship on their way to it so it'd be ready for take off when they got their.  The players all knew this was going to happen and were cool with the ship upgrade coming at the cost of their old ship going boom when they weren't on it.  In your situation ***I*** would let them keep the credits and trade the jewel of yavin for a new ship, but that might not be consistent with the type of game that you want to run.

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