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Ambaryerno

Coulda Woulda Shoulda: If YOU Had Control Of The Sequel Trilogy

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Here's a fun thought exercise I had yesterday after a discussion on Facebook. If you were the one in charge of plotting the direction of the Sequel Trilogy, what would you have done differently? What would you have kept the same? What sort of story beats would you have followed?

I think I might have started with a status quo similar to NJO. The New Republic and Empire are now at peace, with the Jedi reestablished under the direction of Luke Skywalker. Leia, now growing older, has largely retired from politics to raise her family with Han. Luke could be assisted in running the Jedi with a nucanon version of Mara Jade, having determined the whole "Jedi don't have families" nonsense as just as stupid as it was in the Prequels. Most importantly, THE TRIO ARE TOGETHER because that's what fans wanted to see in the FIRST place. Poe Dameron is a squadron leader in the New Republic fleet. There is NO Resistance, just the Republic.

The Empire has been reduced to a fragment of its former self, and plagued by infighting. A few hardliners argue against normalizing relations with the New Republic, with some more progressives pushing for closer ties. Most of the leadership is somewhere in the middle. The remainder of the Imperial Starfleet is lead by a Nucanon version of Grand Admiral Pellaeon, a pragmatist who supports the Imperial progressives, recognizing that a normal diplomatic relationship with the Republic is vital to the Empire's survival.

The First Order would fulfill a similar role as the Vong did in NJO. They would be band of renegade extremists that withdrew into the far reaches of the Galaxy after the Battle of Jakku ended the Civil War, and quietly began establishing themselves at the edge of the Outer Rim under Snoke's leadership. They would be very clearly distinct from the Empire (basically, the Empire is mostly made up of the decent people who genuinely tried to do right, and weren't aware of just how bad the Emperor really was. The First Order got the likes of Tarkin). The Knights of Ren — a sect of fallen Jedi, corrupted students from Luke's school, and other Dark Side users either left over from the days of the Empire/Old Republic or recruited by Snoke — would be a direct presence and a primary threat.

The basic plot is the First Order invading the Republic, the Republic fighting back, and the Empire forced to decide whether to ally with the Republic or First Order, or to wait on the sidelines to see what happened.

Edited by Ambaryerno

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The first order using TIE Interceptors as their default fighter, with the SF version being a 2-seater variant of the defender, and the republic flying a good looking redesign of the e-wing. 

NOT having the force sensitive main character being a dirt poor nobody from a desert planet. 

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I'll do the top 5 things I would change so far: 

1. No Starkiller base. Instead the FO surprise attacks the New Republic capital and quickly overwhelms their ill-prepared fleet and obliterates the capital. Plunging the New Republic into disarray. The Supremacy leads the attack, but I would make it 20% smaller. The FO is way more tactically sound and competent. They appear way more dangerous. 

2. Finn is not a Stormtrooper. If you keep his bumbling personality, I would make him a FO Star fighter mechanic or technician that was forcefully conscripted. He knows the ins and outs of the hanger bay and tricks a Stormtrooper into letting him watch Poe, then they escape. Poe isn't flung from the wreckage which brings me to...

3. The find Rey, but she isn't a Jedi Master yet. She helps them survive the desert, and saves them. When the FO comes after them Poe flies the Falcon. Rey and Finn man the guns and they get away. Instead of Starkiller base the Resistance attacks a regular old FO base. Rey is still captured, but she doesn't Jedi mind trick anyone, she doesn't over power Kylo. She narrowly escapes with Chewy. The attack is successful on the First Order base but at a cost, Han dead, a lot of New Republic ships get destroyed. The Resistance is started there. 

Last Jedi - 

4. Poe dies in the attack on the dreadnought. They successfully destroy it but at the cost of their best pilot. They flee but there isn't a long drawn out chase scene. 

5. Rey actually does training with Luke. Luke is still reluctant to get involved, but towards the end of the movie you see him get in his X-wing to help. Rey confronts Kylo, Snoke is killed, and then Rey joins him. Roll credits. 

Edited by Jo Jo

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Can we give these ideas the same treatment that the ST recieved from you guys?

But on topic:

Small changes I would like to see for ep7: no starkiller base but maybe the supremacy instead. The showdown for Finn/Han/Chewie/Rey/Kylo is similar. Resistance has to destroy a specific target and takes heavy losses in the process, the FO is more capable and wins the tactical battle but suffers a strategic defeat because the specific target gets destroyed and Rey rescued. The difference to the starkiller base is no immediate similarity with the deathstar, and a higher price.

But that also demonstrates already why I - or any of us - are no professional screen writers. The danger of this specific target has to be introduced with a high enough threat level to warrant losing all the ressources of the resistance. Why else would they care enough to rescue Rey? And if it is the supremacy: where is snoke? And how does he not just win? So clearly he can‘t be present, and then the question is where he is instead, and whether it should really be the supremacy?

Maybe some important planet of the FO instead? One that lets the resistance (and audience) really grasp the threat. Think Saruman when he shows Grima his orcs, just much larger.

Anyway, the basic plot remains the same but it would solve some issues: show the threat, heavy losses on both sides, Rey is rescued and goes on to find Luke.

 

small changes ep8: again the chase, but this time to get somewhere. Maybe to the safer regions of the republic (which is still around in this version). The rest can be almost identical.

We can‘t judge Snoke‘s death or the destruction (?) of the supremacy yet, or how important the fall of the new republic is. For that we need ep9, but I would try to change that part of the story.

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Breaking down my own version of The Force Awakens in detail.

The movie begins with the Republic and Empire at relative peace, the latter having largely withdrawn into isolation. Though both sides maintain a tense watch on their borders, there have been no noteworthy incidents, but also only minimal interchange between the two powers. The Republic maintains most of its defense fleet along the Imperial border, with only token defense forces elsewhere.

Rey is an orphan, growing up on a backwater world at the edge of the Republic. Once the site of a major battle between the Republic and Imperial Remnant, most of what is left is the wreckage dotting the grasslands and forests. Notably, this is NOT a desert world, though the areas around where some of the larger ships crashed is devastated and only slowly being reclaimed. There's a token military presence of a single fighter wing under the command of Commander Poe Dameron, a talented pilot, but a bit of a hothead who is too invaluable to let go, but too insubordinate to give an important posting, so was more or less exiled by General Wedge Antilles, head of New Republic Starfighter Command. They're equipped with late-model T-65Js (considering F-15s are still the backbone of the USAF after 30 years of service, there's no reason why the T-65 wouldn't still be in service).

While the Republic has grown complacent, deep in the outermost fringes of the galaxy a new power has been growing over the decades following the end of the Galactic Civil War. The First Order, founded by hardline Imperialists who refused to accept the peace treaty and broke away from the Imperial Remnant, has been secretly marshaling its forces in the depths of the Outer Rim. Supreme Leader Snoke, from his flagship, the Super Star Destroyer Supremacy, (I'd use the Eclipse-class from the old EU as the inspiration) has determined the time is right to reclaim the Empire for themselves, and dispatches General Hux to begin a long-planned assault on the Republic. Their first target is the defense post where Poe's fighter wing is stationed. Choosing not to release their full strength immediately, Hux commits a small force of two Star Destroyers with their consorts and drop ships.

A furious dogfight breaks out as Poe's vastly outnumbered fighters scramble to repel the assault. They put up stiff resistance and manage to inflict heavy losses on the First Order fighters and maul one of the Star Destroyers, but are ultimately wiped out. Poe himself is shot down in a desperate effort to draw swarms of TIE fighters off the rest of his people in hopes some can escape to warn the Republic. His fighter is crippled, but he manages to down all of his pursusers. Unfortunately, the effort is wasted; his fighter wing is annihilated, and Poe crash-lands on Rey's home world. With the Republic military presence in the system destroyed, Hux begins landing his troops. The Stormtroopers, under command of the brutally efficient Phasma, overwhelm the meager militia forces that make up the planet's surface defenders, though one trooper, FN-2187, panics under fire.

Rey, having witnessed the dogfight in the air above, and hearing the surface battle, emerges from hiding after the chaos dies down. By chance she stumbles across a downed Republic X-wing, whose wounded pilot is alive, but unconscious. It's Poe Dameron. She manages to drag him out of the fighter before its fuel tanks explode, and hides him in her home. His astromech, BB-8, follows her. Meanwhile, Kylo Ren, leader of the Knights of Ren, disembarks his shuttle to take command of the situation on the ground. Phasma confirms that none of the local defenders managed to send an alert to the Republic. However the commander of the First Order fighter attack acknowledges when confronted that one Republic starfighter is unaccounted for; it broke away during the engagement, and the fighters which followed have not checked in, and are presumed destroyed. Kylo Ren orders a search be made of the surface nearby for evidence of the fighter's fate.

While the First Order conducts its search, Rey tends to the badly wounded Poe. He's half-conscious and delirious, but is able to communicate the urgency of getting a message to the Republic about the assault. Rey warns him the best thing for him is to hide until he's stronger, and that the planet doesn't have a transmitter strong enough to reach the Core Worlds, anyway. For the next several days Rey continues hiding Poe and tending his injuries, while First Order troops swarm the local area, interrogating the residents. FN-2187 is a member of one such squad, and grows increasingly disillusioned at the ruthless tactics. Eventually the wreckage of Poe's X-wing is discovered, and FN-2187's squad is sent to Rey's home nearby. When the troopers arrive she hides Poe and BB-8 as best she can, and denies anyone is there. When the troops try to force entry she picks up her staff to fend them off, but they're too many and she's forced to the ground. One of the troopers is about to shoot her, when FN-2187 makes a decision, and fires on his own comrades first. FN offers to get them to a ship, if they promise to take him with them. Rey is bewildered and unwilling to trust him, but Poe, recovered enough to get back onto his feet, is willing to take FN-2187's mutiny at face value and agrees. Rey, however, is reluctant to leave her home.

Unfortunately, they don't have long to debate. The blaster fire has drawn the attention of other troopers, who are now swarming towards Rey's home. FN, redubbed Finn after Poe's distaste with his serial number, is given a change of clothes so he can ditch his armor, and he leads them in a cat-and-mouse chase through Rey's hometown, pursued by more Stormtroopers. However Finn takes advantage of his knowledge of First Order tactics to guide them safely through the patrols to the local spaceport, little more than an open landing pad in the middle of a field. However they're spotted when they are forced to break from cover, and a firefight breaks out as the three scramble for the first ship they can find. Rey leads them to an old, broken-down YT-1300 owned by her boss, Unkar Plett. Poe hops in the pilot's seat while Rey, who is familiar with Plett's modifications, having assisted him with working on the ship in her free time, joins him in the copilot's station. Together they get the old freighter moving, and blast away from the landing pad. However the unauthorized launch grabs the attention of the First Order, and TIE fighters are dispatched to force them back down. Rey directs Poe to a large swatch of wasteland where a large number of wrecked ships crashed, while Finn mans the top turret (seriously, it's stupid Finn would take the BOTTOM turret when Rey was hugging the deck). The escape from this point is similar to the original film, only with Poe at the pilot's station while Ray assists (the two could bicker about who flies the ship, with Rey noting she is trained as a pilot herself).

Working together, the trio manage to escape, and Poe evades the First Order blockade, jumps to hyperspace against Rey's objections. She repeats her insistence on going home, but Poe warns her it would be suicide. Finn, arriving from the turret, concurs. Poe presses him on what's going on, and Finn begins to tell him about the First Order. However their stolen freighter shudders suddenly, and an alarm sounds as it drops out of hyperspace, and power fails throughout the ship. Rey angrily swears about Unkar Plett installing a faulty hyperdrive compressor, and that she warned him about it but he refused to listen. The trio scrambles to get main power restored, when the ship is caught in a tractor beam.

The next scene plays out more or less like the original film, as it's a good way to bring Han and Chewie into the film. The main difference now is Poe's presence ("General Solo!" "I'm RETIRED!") and rather than the map to Luke Skywalker, the race is to warn the Republic about the First Order's assault before they can strike again. Additionally, rather than pirates, it's a First Order scout that boards Han's ship. Also, no rathtars (seriously, I'm getting tired of the gratuitous CGI monsters ever since they decided to "update" the sarlaac). And well, I LOVED the moment of the Falcon jumping to hyperspace inside the hangar of Han's ship. Upon escaping from the First Order patrol, Han sets course for the smuggler outpost at Takodana; there's a communications post there that could reach the main sector fleet base in the Hosnian System (the Falcon's comm system lacks the range) and with the First Order in pursuit Han doubts the Falcon could reach it in time.

Meanwhile, Snoke berates Kylo Ren over the escape of the Falcon. Hux takes advantage to ingratiate himself with Snoke to announce the fleet is ready for a full assault, and proposes attacking the fleet anchorage in the Hosnian System to knock out a substantial part of the Republic's fleet before they can be mobilized. Snoke agrees to his plan, and dispatches Kylo Ren to continue the pursuit of the Falcon, as he's intrigued by the girl, Rey, who throughout the film thus far has demonstrated subtle hints of Force-sensitivity (particularly moments where she seems to sense things before they happen. IE perhaps Rey feels the arrival of the First Order scout before it actually docks with Han's new ship).

En route to Takodana, Han, Chewie, and his four passengers relax. Rey helps tend to Poe's injuries, which were exacerbated by the flight from Rey's home, and the fight with the First Order troops aboard Han's freighter. Finn tells Han as much as he can about the First Order, and especially the enigmatic Kylo Ren. This leads to a conversation similar to Han and Rey's discussion about the Force in the film itself, with Han beginning to recognize from his experiences with Luke, Obi-Wan, and later Leia, that Rey may be Force-sensitive herself. Han remarks that as time passed he saw less and less of Luke, who began to focus most of his time on training the new generation of Jedi. He makes allusions to dissatisfaction from some of the students, who began to experiment with forbidden teachings from the Dark Side. Eventually this led a number of them to depart Luke's academy at the rebuilt Jedi Temple on Coruscant never to be seen again (unlike the original version, the Academy itself is NOT destroyed).

The Falcon arrives at Maz's castle on Takodana. Much of this scene will play out as before; Now that Finn has told Han everything he can about the First Order he's looking to slip away on a clean ship to escape the fight that's coming, while Rey has her encounter with Maz and Luke's lightsaber, before rushing out. Poe makes his way for the communications post, (in place of the random Resistance agents) where he is able to raise Hosnian Prime and relay a warning to the fleet anchored there, which is then passed on to Fleet Command. Unfortunately, it arrives too late for the Hosnian System itself: Hux's entire fleet drops out of hyperspace and attacks in a devastating, Pearl Harbor-esque raid. The anchored fleet if virtually annihilated. Poe is on the line with the Hosnian communications station when the attack begins, and he rushes to warn Han...just in time for a small task force led by Kylo Ren to arrive. Poe and Maz arrange to send a distress call to the closest Republic outpost, while Han and Finn head after Rey.

The Battle of Takodana largely plays out in the same way as in the original film, with Rey captured by Kylo Ren and Finn and Han unable to stop it. It's New Republic forces, the legendary Rogue Squadron flying sleek new E-wings, that arrive to drive out the First Order incursion. After the battle, Poe, Finn, Han, and Chewie are escorted to Coruscant, where Han has his tense reunion with Leia. Unlike the original version, he then asks for Luke to join them. We get our much-desired reunion of the Trio, as Han reveals he saw his and Leia's son, Ben, lead the First Order troops. We're also introduced to the Nucanon version of Mara Jade Skywalker, and we get a little exposition about how Luke's new Jedi Order differs from the Old Republic.

Finn also returns Anakin Skywalker's lightsaber, to Luke's astonishment, but he tells Finn to hold onto it for him. Everyone is brought before a gathering of the entire Republic High Command — aging Admiral Ackbar, Wedge Antilles, and many other familiar faces who now hold senior leadership positions in the Republic — for a briefing on the First Order, while news of the destruction of the Hosnian Sector Fleet is relayed to the astonished officers. Finn suggests the First Order is likely to fortify the remnants of the Hosnian System as a forward base of operations, giving the Republic a brief window of opportunity to strike back before they can consolidate. Unfortunately, the Republic fleet is concentrated at the Imperial Border, and it may take weeks to muster the entire Starfleet for a concerted attack. Finn suggests that knocking out Hux's flagship may be sufficient to slow the Order's assault down, buying time for the rest of the Republic's forces to regroup. Finn also suspects Rey would most likely be taken there, and insists on rescuing her.

A plan is put into place: Han, accompanied by Chewie, Luke, and Finn will lead a commando strike on the Hosnian System to rescue Rey, and shut down Hux's flagship's defenses. Luke also intends to confront his nephew. Once they're down, Republic fighter squadrons based on Coruscant , along with a handful of cruisers, including the venerable old Home One, which has remained in service as something of an honor guard for the Coruscant System, will launch an all-out attack against the flagship. Poe is placed in command of Rogue Squadron and given overall command of the fighter attack. As everyone loads up, Leia approaches Luke and Han, and asks them to bring Ben home. Luke and Han both express doubts, but Leia suggests Han might reach him as his father, where Luke failed as his uncle and teacher.

The final battle of the film plays out similarly to the original. Han uses a smuggler's trick to approach Hux's flagship through the wreckage of the Hosnian system, with Finn helping him land in an auxiliary docking bay that isn't closely monitored. Luke and Finn head to rescue Rey, with Han and Chewie sabotaging the flagship's power systems. Luke uses the Force to bluff their way past the ship's complement of Stormtroopers and to the brig, where Rey is freed and is awestruck to find herself in the presence of the Jedi Master. They head to regroup with Han and Chewie, arriving just in time to watch Han's fatal confrontation with his son. Luke is unable to prevent Ben from killing his own father in cold blood, and a firefight breaks out when the rest of the group is discovered. Chewie flies into a rage at Han's death, and triggers the explosives planted throughout the flagship's power core, rocking the vessel. Detecting the flagship's shields going down, the Republic fighters drop out of hyperspace. E-wings escort bombers like a modernized version of the Y-wing, which unleash a massive volley of proton torpedoes that hammer Hux's flagship. The flagship itself is BIG, perhaps half the length of Executor, and heavily armed. She's also surrounded by her consorts, which all begin flooding space with TIE fighters. Poe's fighters engage the fighter defenses while the bombers continue to hammer away.

During the chaos, Rey and Finn get separated from Luke as the internal structure of Hux's ship collapses under the assault, and end up running directly into Kylo Ren. Much like the original version, Rey is incapacitated, and Finn attacks Kylo Ren with Anakin's lightsaber in a rage. He doesn't last long, however, and is soon badly wounded. Rey then manages to get hold of the lightsaber herself, and though she acquits herself better and even manages to wound Kylo, she, too, is disarmed. However before Kylo can finish her off Luke intercedes, igniting his green lightsaber, and trying one last time to reach his nephew. Kylo, however, is too far gone and attacks him in a rage. Luke retains his calm, and in spite of his age quickly proves to be more than a match for his nephew even when he is clearly holding back.

The space battle continues to rage outside. Although flailing and with main power down, Hux's ship remains more than a match for the hastily-assembled Republic fleet, and losses mount. With time running out, Ackbar makes a desperate attempt to knock out the flagship; he orders his crew to abandon ship, and turns Home One on a collision course. Once all of the escape ships are clear, he activates the hyperdrive, smashing his aging flagship through Hux's ship (yes, I'm using this. And I'm doing it to give Ackbar the heroes end he deserved).

On the flagship, Luke and Kylo's duel is interrupted as Home One rams through at lightspeed, separating the two combatants as debris clogs the corridors. He helps Rey carry the stricken Finn away, as they retrace their path through the ruined interior of the flagship, undisturbed by the crew fleeing for their own lives, and meet Chewie at the Falcon. They get aboard just in time as the flagship begins to come apart at the seams, and manage to punch clear. Outside, Poe and the remains of his fighter squadrons hammer the flagship with every torpedo they have left. The crippled ship careens out of control, and slams into the remains of the dockyard. The ensuing fireball helps cover the Republic forces as they retreat.

The victorious Republic forces return to Coruscant, however the heavy losses incurred in the battle, particularly the deaths of the legendary Han Solo and Admiral Ackbar, dampens the celebration. Leia, Luke, and Chewie reunite, while Finn is taken to a medical station to recuperate. At the very end, Rey offers Luke back Anakin's lightsaber, but he closes her hand around it, wordlessly insisting she keep it to begin her training.

----

So you can see I chose to work with a lot of the same basic plot elements as the actual film. IMO the main issues with The Force Awakens was how heavily it relied on bringing back plot points from the original Star Wars. This treatment keeps much of its own core plot intact, while removing many of those rehashed elements. I decided to better establish Poe's hot-headedness from TLJ by introducing him as basically sent on a punishment detail to an out of the way system where he's unlikely to do any real damage. The part where he crashes and Rey rescues him is inspired by the resistance fighters in Europe and the Pacific during WWII, who would help downed airmen return to base. I dropped the whole "rotating capital" foolishness, and made the Hosnian System instead into a major Sector Fleet base, while rather than the hunt for Luke Skywalker driving the first part of the plot, it's instead the First Order wanting to take the Republic by surprise, and not reveal themselves (in this case, the Republic doesn't even know they exist). Rey's demonstration of Force-sensitivity is also more subtle, here, with Luke doing most of the heavy lifting in the climax. I still want her to at least give Kylo Ren SOMETHING of a fight before she's overwhelmed, so I let her get a hit in, before Luke steps in.

I kind of imagine Kylo all but running for his life as the fight progresses, as sort of a reverse of Luke's confrontation with Vader in Empire. Kylo STARTS cocky and fueled by anger, but the longer the fight goes, and the more he acknowledges that Luke is in complete control, the more his composure breaks down, and the more he starts to panic.

And yes, as I noted I took the hyperspace ramming from TLJ, and used it here with Ackbar. The simple fact is I needed SOME way to conceivably take down Hux's flagship, and starfighters just don't have the firepower. And if the Coruscant Sector Fleet is mostly ceremonial, it likely wouldn't have ships with sufficient firepower to take on a baby-Executor in a slugging match. It also lets Ackbar go out like a badass, rather than getting sucked into space like a chump.

I'll need to do some thinking on how exactly to approach TLJ, as I imagine that would unfold quite a bit differently. For one, that is the film where I intend to get the Empire involved, and that will certainly shake some things up. Plus I have a much more proactive Luke.

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2 hours ago, Ambaryerno said:

Breaking down my own version of The Force Awakens in detail.

What are the dramatic questions of your characters?

Who are your main characters?

What do they want? What do they need? How do these two conflict? How do these two conflict with the outside world? With other characters? How does the resolution change them? And how does that change affect the others?

All questions should have a clear answer.

You would try to take this movie apart (Simply fly into a less used docking bay?) and I wouldn‘t even defend it.

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8 hours ago, GreenDragoon said:

What are the dramatic questions of your characters?

Who are your main characters?

What do they want? What do they need? How do these two conflict? How do these two conflict with the outside world? With other characters? How does the resolution change them? And how does that change affect the others?

All questions should have a clear answer.

You would try to take this movie apart (Simply fly into a less used docking bay?) and I wouldn‘t even defend it.

It's a plot synopsis I made in about an hour off the top of my head posted as I wrote it with no editing pass or revisions. If this were something I was writing for REAL I'd already be looking for an alternate method of getting aboard Hux's ship for the next revision (no, I didn't like it). All your OTHER questions belong on character sketches, NOT the plot synopsis.

This ain't my first rodeo, Scooter.

Edited by Ambaryerno

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53 minutes ago, Ambaryerno said:

This ain't my first rodeo, Scooter.

It‘s not a good run though.

Keeping the Empire and the FO as separate entities? That will confuse everyone, and definitely anger those who wanted to know more about the new republic in TFA.

Maintaining the fleet at the border is a strategic mistake and known since roman times. A military outpost with T65s on Jakku? Another blunder. Republic grown complacent after just 30 years? Not believable if the former threat is literally at the border and visible.

The first FO attack is on the backwater world with Poe? Do you want to make the FO even more incompetent?

And that was just from the first 3 paragraphs. Not a good run.

 

As for the questions: sure, but you are describing a setting and trying to shoehorn both the old and new characters in. I‘m not even going into the indulgence because that was to be expected and is palpable. If you are giving a story synopsis with the details of individual characters then questions about these characters are a logical next step and the missing conflict is already visible. The questions do and did highlight that your story falls flat on that front. Too many main characters, not enough room for new ones, no conflict, and so on. 

I‘m not saying it is all bad, or that it is bad at all. It‘s just much worse than TLJ.

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Me personally, I believe after 9 if they are going to make more movies they should just restart all the way at the beginning with Episode 1. Then do a 9 part series that makes sense and can actually have some character continuity. I don't believe those from Episode 1 has to make it to Episode 9 but that is one of the major problems with all 3 trilogies. The characters don't cross over.

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Had I been in charge of the ST I likely would have fast tracked an animated adaption of the Thrawn trilogy, with bringing Timothy Zahn on to help write the script and have Mark Hamill voice Luke. I’d do this because it is something that is more or less universally liked by the Star Wars community, with it already being written there would be less overall developing time, it would give time for the actual ST to be better outlined and scripted, and would give time to go through the legends material and use it as 20+ years of market research to see what the fans did and didn’t like about it. Not to mention the trilogy would be the last big adventure for the OT characters before they needed to step back into more supporting roles.

Then when it came to the actual ST I’d probably try to keep the ‘poetry rhyming’ elements, ie TPM and ANH both end on a battle with a spherical space station/ship with the film closing on a celebration, ESB and ATOC feature a big land battle. Basically try to keep a sense of familiarity with the setting while exploring a new setting and using a few new spins on archetypes to keep it fresh. Oh and keep the ‘documentary’ feel to it so no flashbacks. 

Setting:

As for setting of the ST, I’d go with: The Empire was reduced to only having territory from the Core Worlds to the Colonies, they allied with the Chiss and after some time were reformed with a new Chiss Imperial family to help guide the Empire while moffs manage the sectors. The New Republic is concentrated mostly in the Mid Rim to Outer Rim with a ruling Senate. Both powers have an uneasy truce with a neutral zone similar to the one TNG had between the Federation and Romulans. As for the Resistance it doesn’t exist with all of those characters folded into the New Republic’s military while the First Order is a secretive/terrorist group in the Empire that wishes to destroy the New Republic so the Empire can reclaim its former glory.

Design:

The New Republic would have sturdier designs that were ‘sequels’ to OT ships. The T-70 would still exist but would be used by the Jedi as the New Republic’s Jedi Starfighter rather than as the mainline ship of their navy. Assuming the Clone Wars era added the U-Wing, V-Wing, X-Wing, Y-Wing, Z-95 and the OT era added the A-Wing and B-Wing keeping with that convention and have the new fighters be the C-Wing, D-Wing, and E-Wing with the C-Wing being an interceptor evolution from the A-Wing, the D-Wing be the evolution of the B-Wing and their bomber (something very much like this art  done for the ILM Challenge) and the E-Wing being the New Republic’s mainline fighter though likely tweaked a bit so that the astromech was able to be seen. The Empire instead would be making use of a mix of Cygnus style ships like some evolution of the Gunboat and new Ties like the Chiss Clawcraft, with their ships being made to look swift and elegant with curves to contrast them against the more industrial looking New Republic ships.

Characters:

Main Cast:

Rey – The Imperial Princess, who wants to end the cold war between the New Republic and Empire and establish peace. I made her a princess to keep with the trend of Padme and Leia, and with her being the Imperial Princess that would make her Chiss and allow the main cast to have another alien character and with it mostly just being a different skin color there wouldn’t be too much of a problem with the audience relating with her since Gamora from Guardians of the Galaxy worked. But overall her character would encompass the future and wanting to move forward and would have to suffer and overcome the consequences of her decisions.

Poe – The New Republic agent, who works to drive back the Imperials when they enter the Neutral Zone. He’d represent the fanbase to an extent exonerating the past and the heroics of the Rebellion and doesn’t trust the Imperials due to them being the ‘bad guys’ with his story arc over films being him having to get over the past and the grudges left there to move forward.

Finn – The Everyman, who didn’t plan to end up being a part of the conflict and was dragged into it. He’d represent the people coming into the franchise fairly fresh or not knowing much and would be having to deal with the viewpoints that Rey and Poe keep trying to lean him towards. He learns from the past (Poe) and the future (Rey) with the conclusion of not being stuck in the past but remembering it to create a better future.

BB-8 – The Astromech of the ST trilogy, and instead of being Poe’s droid at the outset becomes his during Episode 7.

Kylo Ren/Ben Solo – The manipulated man, who doesn’t want to destroy everything but wants to revive the Empire to its original strength to being order. The idea behind him being that he isn’t evil and doesn’t want to do horrible deeds but thrusts that weight on himself to try and create a better life for others down the line. His backstory being that he was his sister’s apprentice, Jaina Solo, and while on a mission he saw her killed gave into his rage and killed her attacker and wants to make sure that no one else would have to go through that tragedy again making him easily manipulated by Snoke. I’d also toy with either keeping his Jacen name from Legends or naming him Bail after Leia’s adoptive father.

Snoke – The Manipulator, who wants to revert the Empire to what it was, to remove the Imperial family, destroy the New Republic and have the Empire reclaim its glory with him as its leader. Unlike Palpatine I’d actually not have him be a force user, but a moff who didn’t know that Palpatine was a sith so is trying to follow in the man’s steps including having a dark side enforcer in Kylo. Just think it would be interesting to have a normal person having to try and keep a force user under his control.

Supporting Cast:

Luke – The grandmaster of the New Jedi Order, who with his order tries to maintain the peace between the Empire and New Republic as well as going to help settle disputes on worlds in the Neutral Zone and in the Outer Rim. He’d serve a mentor role to Rey.

Leia – The New Republic military advisor, who after retiring from politics is trying to help make sure that the next generation will be able to keep and enjoy the peace that she and the Rebellion worked so hard to create. She’d serve a mentor role to Rey and Poe.

Han – The Retired and married man, who stuck with Leia after losing their children and helps out the New Republic to relive the thrills of his youth.

Chewie – The best co-pilot in the galaxy, who sticks with Han.

R2-D2 – The faithful companion, who still serves as Luke’s astromech.

C-3PO – The faithful attendant, who still serves Leia.

Mara Jade – The resourceful individual, who is married to Luke, member of the New Jedi Order, and keeps in contact with Lando to keep up with smuggling operations.

Lando – The respectable businessman, who serves much the same role that Talon Karde did with him managing a large smuggling operation and focuses on his business smuggling goods in and out of the New Republic and Empire.

Admiral Ackbar – New Republic Grand Admiral, who leads the fleet.

Wedge Antilles – New Republic Admiral, leads a fleet and occasionally flies an E-Wing into battle.

Hux – Kylo Ren’s ship captain, with him filling in a role similar to that of Piett.

Phasma – Kylo Ren’s Stormtrooper commander, with her filling in a role similar to that of Veers.

Films:

Still working on everything here, I have general ideas in mind but here is episode 7 to start.

Episode 7:

The film starts with Rey traveling to the Nuetral Zone world of Jakku, with her planning to meet up with a Jedi sent there to escort her to the New Republic to attempt to start peace talks. However, with her leaving the safety of the Empire behind, Snoke has dispatched Kylo Ren and his forces out to kill her so they could instigate a war with the New Republic under the pretense that the New Republic killed the Princess. She lands and meets the Jedi just before they are attacked, the Jedi having his droid BB-8 go with her to help keep her safe. The two have a lightsaber fight, with Kylo being the victor but instead of striking him down Kylo hesitates for a second, and ends up with a cut on his arm with Phasma responding by ordering her men to open fire on the downed Jedi to protect Kylo. With the Princess and droid escaping Kylo has Phasma dispatch troopers to find her immediately and the T-70 X-Wing is destroyed.

Luke and Leia having lost contact with the Jedi sent out to pick up the Imperial Princess send out Han, Chewie, and Poe to investigate the matter. Finn meanwhile, having seen the explosion last night hurries out in the morning to try and see if he could scavenge anything from the wreckage before others got to it and a sequence similar to Rey’s from TFA plays out with him surviving. He notes that there are stormtroopers looking for something when he turns his scraps in for food. Getting back home he finds Rey and BB-8 took shelter in it and wants nothing to do with them initially because it could get him killed even if he wanted to help but the promise of payment gets him to agree.

He sneaks out with Rey and BB-8 to head to the rundown spaceport town to at least get them to a ship. There they run into Poe and Chewie, some exposition is dropped and they make their way to the Falcon, Poe not trusting Rey at all. An informant tells the stormtroopers the groups location and they descend upon them, with Kylo showing up just in time to see Rey trying to take out stormtroopers out non-lethally. It causes him to decide to take Rey alive rather than dead, and he takes her just as the others board the Falcon to give chase.

The star destroyer jumps away, and the falcon tries to give chase but the engines sputter out. Han gives the news to Leia, and while the New Republic wants to keep their forces out of the Neutral Zone she promises to see what she can do while Luke sets out with her to try and intercept the Kylo’s ship based off the coordinates they got from Han.

On board the Star Destroyer Rey is held in an detention room, and a man is dragged in and thrown in the cell with her. The two discuss why they were there, with the man asking her questions. It turns out that the man is actually an unmasked Kylo Ren who wanted to learn more about Rey and after having questioned her feels that it would be best to not kill her but rather to have her join with them to take down the New Republic to bring a lasting peace for everyone. Phasma points out that Snoke wanted her dead but Kylo argues the point, willing to take any blame if this went bad.

Finn, Han, and Poe have time to bond as they repair the Falcon’s hyperdrive before speeding off to the coordinates that Luke and Leia sent them. They arrive to see New Republic Interdiction craft (a ship with a spherical bit), with Han wondering why Kylo’s ship wasn’t there yet with Leia explaining that they had activated interdiction buoyies which were normally used against pirates but she got the support she needed to activate them thanks to the Jedi helping keep the peace in the Neutral Zone. Han, Leia, and Luke all get a moment to be together on screen.

Luke plans to confront Kylo but Han says that he has to be the one to do it instead. With a plan set up to rescue Rey they get the word that the star destroyer has arrived, so they race to their ships. Kylo seeing the Interdiction craft knows that if they destroy that they could escape back into Imperial space with the princess, and has the fighters launch all targeting it. Leia commands the few larger ships to attack the star destroyer to prevent it from attacking the interdiction craft while Luke leads a small X-Wing squadron with him flying his old T-65 to protect the interdiction craft from the incoming Imperial fighters.

Han, Chewie, Poe, BB-8, Finn, and a few New Republic troopers launch in the Falcon to go and rescue Rey. Kylo senses his father and goes to confront him. Rey in her cell has figured a way to get the door open and breaks out herself, using an improvised pole weapon to try and make her way to the hangar, just when it looks like she is caught Finn and the others take out the stormtroopers and they begin racing back to the Falcon. Han sees Kylo and tells the others to go, despite their protests. The others run, firing back at storm troopers, with Rey saving Poe from getting shot once while they escape.

The battle outside rages and it looks like the Interdiction craft won’t be able to take much more. Rey and the others race to the Falcon. Han and Kylo confront each other, Kylo threating his father though Han knows he is just posturing. Han begins to talk him down, with Kylo deactivating his lightsaber. Phasma who has been fighting with the storm troopers against the new Republic invaders sees Kylo and Han, seeing the blaster in Han’s hand and Kylo with his lightsaber off points her blaster and takes her shot, scoring a killing shot on Han. Kylo and Han have a final moment as the Interdiction craft is destroyed, the Falcon just launching as the star destroyer jumps to lightspeed.

Luke and Leia mourn Han’s death while Kylo makes sure his father’s body is burned properly promising that his father’s death won’t be in vain and that he will bring order to the galaxy. Poe begins to question if all Imperials are bad, Finn doesn’t know what to do next but figures that Rey might get into trouble without him, and the film ends on a parade at the New Republic’s capital welcoming Rey to start peace talks, with Poe, Finn, AND Chewie getting awards for helping make sure she got there.

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5 hours ago, GreenDragoon said:

Keeping the Empire and the FO as separate entities? That will confuse everyone, and definitely anger those who wanted to know more about the new republic in TFA.

Poe: Who are these guys? I mean those were Star Destroyers and TIE-series fighters, but the Empire has nothing like what I saw.
Finn: We — they call themselves the First Order.
Poe: First Order?
Finn: You guys heard of Tarkin, right?
Rey: Grand Moff Tarkin? The man who destroyed Alderaan?
Finn: Yeah, well, these guys make him look like a pacifist. From what I understand the First Order started as a bunch of officers deciding the Empire was no longer Imperial enough, like the Armistice was a betrayal of the Emperor. So one day they just up and vanished with their ships and men into the Unknown Regions, where they evolved into something worse. I guess I'm one of the lucky ones; I was conscripted from one of the systems they took over in the Unknown Regions, so wasn't born into the indoctrination.

Hey look at that. With one bit of dialogue the confusion is completely cleared up. And really? The only thing we learned about the Republic in TFA is that they didn't reestablish their capital on Coruscant, and that we're expected to believe they kept their entire navy bottled up in a single star system. Almost everything else had to come from supplementary material.

5 hours ago, GreenDragoon said:

Maintaining the fleet at the border is a strategic mistake and known since roman times.

And yet it's a "strategic mistake" that is STILL BEING MADE TODAY. IE the Maginot Line and the US staging its battleships at Pearl Harbor in the lead up to WWII, the concentration of NATO forces in Central Europe to counter the Warsaw Pact states during the Cold War, or the heavy distribution of American military assets in the Middle-East today. When you have an expansive amount of territory to defend, but a finite amount of resource with which to do it, the strategy has always been to concentrate the bulk of your forces where you expect the most trouble, while your interior defense is primarily drawn from reserve units or local guard/militias. This is one reason why making allies with your neighbors is so important; it's one less border you need to devote significant resources to defending.

5 hours ago, GreenDragoon said:

A military outpost with T65s on Jakku? Another blunder.

How? Because T-65s are old? The T-65 by TFA is no older than the F-15 is now, and yet as I noted, the F-15 is STILL the main fighter in the USAF. And the only reason the F-14 is no longer still in service with the USN is because of money and politics (retiring rather than modernizing the F-14 fleet was a TREMENDOUS mistake, especially with the growing threat of long-range anti-shipping missiles, the sort of threat the F-14 was BRED to deal with).

5 hours ago, GreenDragoon said:

Republic grown complacent after just 30 years? Not believable if the former threat is literally at the border and visible.

Like I said, one of many things that might change on subsequent editing passes. ****, even if it survives revisions of the synopsis it may not make it through the drafting stage (in one of the stories I'm working on right now a character I intended to be a major antagonist villain across an entire trilogy goes and gets himself killed halfway through the first book because as his character developed I realized it wouldn't make sense for him to survive any longer).

5 hours ago, GreenDragoon said:

The first FO attack is on the backwater world with Poe? Do you want to make the FO even more incompetent?

So I guess the Germans were incompetent by circumventing the Maginot Line. Or the Allies were by end-running Pas-de-Calais by landing at Normandy instead. What about the American Island-Hopping strategy of bypassing heavily-fortified strongholds like Rabaul in favor of taking less or undefended islands? Or let's let the characters do the talking themselves...

Rey: But why Jakku? I mean other than the spaceport and some old wrecks there's nothing out here.
Finn: I don't know, maybe they thought it was a symbolic thing. I mean, this is where the "old" Empire died in their minds, right? Maybe it's a message.
Poe: Oh, it's more than symbolic, buddy. Think about it: The Republic's only real concern out here was the odd pirate or smuggler. The real bad guy we were watching out for was the Empire, so that's where the bulk of the fleet is concentrated. Which means Jakku gives your First Order a back door into the Republic. From here they can hit the sector base in the Hosnian System, and with only three squadrons of fighters and the orbital platform here there's no one to send them a warning if they hit it hard and fast enough. And I tell you, we may have bloodied their lip a little, but we never had a chance against the sort of firepower they hit us with. They had our comms jammed the instant they dropped out of hyperspace, so we couldn't even send a distress call. I'd hoped at least a couple of my guys could slip away, but if Finn here is right about it, it sounds like none of them got out.

How 'bout that, I even added some characterization of the First Order and Republic to boot.

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17 hours ago, Cr0aker said:

Heir to the Empire. Deep fake young Han, Leia and Luke faces onto the stand-in actors. Would have used the original actors for voice over.

As a fan of the novels, i'd have LOVED to seen the Heir to the empire/Dark force rising/Last command Trilogy making it onto the Big screen..  BUT the time line's way off for using the same actors.

 

What i would have done.

A) NO Rey.  NO Finn.  No snoke.  Just have Han's kid, turning to the dark side, with numbers on his side, he storms the new Jedi temple.  Luke dies.

B) No starkiller base OR that monstrosity that was the supremacy. Make the First order, Tactically SOUND and actually Competent.  Have them destroy the "New republic" in one fell swoop, leaving Leia, Han, Chewie, Wedge, Ackbar to run away.  Where they have to rebuild the rebellion from scratch.

C) Keep Poe, but do NOT have that whole "i am so good, i ignore orders crap". 

D) Some better ground/air battles.  IMO the space battles were rather sub-par.  And we didn't really even GET a proper ground battle in EP 8.. 

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3 hours ago, LTuser said:

Have them destroy the "New republic" in one fell swoop, leaving Leia, Han, Chewie, Wedge, Ackbar to run away.

I'm curious how you would do this. It already strained credibility in TFA that destroying the Hosnian System would not only knock out the entire Republic Navy, (so I guess they had no ships whatsoever patrolling their borders, or on anti-piracy details, relief missions, or all the other hundreds of other things a navy actually does) but eliminate any sort of governmental apparatus. Even the US has contingencies in the event of a disaster of that scale. Palpatine was only able to do it because he didn't DESTROY the Republic, but subverted it from within full control and near-unanimous support of the Senate (with the dissenters founding the Rebel Alliance).

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If it were 2014 and I was just handed the keys to the kingdom. I would start with this framework.

1: Ditch the trilogy format. Do not lock the story into having to be three films. 

2: Do not try to "re-set" everything to Empire versus Rebellion and make it 1977. 

3: Create a coherent set of rules for The Force and the tech and the ships and space travel and the economy to be used in both the main Episodes and the spin-off stories. Distill and refine this from the copious EU and secondary material. Get the sizes for ships and bases in line and consistent. 

4: Make Luke the head of a new Jedi order. 

5: Make Leia the grand dame (now mostly retired) of a grand and properly functioning New Republic. 

6: Make Han Solo already dead. Ford didn't want to be in the films really. Ditch him as part of the setup. Passed to natural causes or perhaps mysteriously      died as an ongoing quest for our new stars. 

7: Give our old school heroes offspring mid to late teens who will eventually be the heroes of our stories. Most likely padawans learning under masters not Luke and Leia. 

8: Start with a small story that can sow the seeds for an extended storyline. Do not make the entire universe on the line. Do not make it something where Luke and Leia have to come and clean up the mess. Luke and Leia are the wise mentors. Our padawans and their masters are the stars. 

9: Our first story serves to largely establish the rules of The Force and the structure of the new Jedi order as our padawans and mentors stop some sort of bad guys on the level of Jabba the Hutt at most. Something like Luke assigning our padawans (Leia's twins probably) their masters and getting separate assignments that then converge and require the participation of all to defeat. 

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7 hours ago, Ambaryerno said:

I'm curious how you would do this. It already strained credibility in TFA that destroying the Hosnian System would not only knock out the entire Republic Navy, (so I guess they had no ships whatsoever patrolling their borders, or on anti-piracy details, relief missions, or all the other hundreds of other things a navy actually does) but eliminate any sort of governmental apparatus. Even the US has contingencies in the event of a disaster of that scale. Palpatine was only able to do it because he didn't DESTROY the Republic, but subverted it from within full control and near-unanimous support of the Senate (with the dissenters founding the Rebel Alliance).

 

From all i read, the main reason the NR had few ships Other than what was at Hosnian, was because they felt there was no threats to have such a large military to resist.. 

So if THIS NR, does the same, you could stage a raid, drawing IN what ships the NR has to defend, then hit them hard, to damage/destroy most if not all, of their fleet in 1 fell swoop.

Then you'd also need to do the same to all the shipyards.

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3 hours ago, LTuser said:

 

From all i read, the main reason the NR had few ships Other than what was at Hosnian, was because they felt there was no threats to have such a large military to resist.. 

So if THIS NR, does the same, you could stage a raid, drawing IN what ships the NR has to defend, then hit them hard, to damage/destroy most if not all, of their fleet in 1 fell swoop.

Then you'd also need to do the same to all the shipyards.

That's one of the problems I had with TFA to begin with: The US Navy, which "only" has to account for 360 million square kilometers of water, still has a total active and reserve fleet of 480 ships, plus those under construction. Both Republics and the Empire in between had potentially 6.35×1010 cubic lightyears to cover (assuming the Star Wars galaxy is equivalent in size to the Milky Way. Also remember that submarines aside, a contemporary navy only has to worry about the surface. In a galaxy you have DEPTH to worry about, too, since star systems aren't all neatly laid out on a flat plane). Even if the New Republic were to step down its military after Jakku (as one does during peacetime) you're still talking the need for tens of thousands of vessels — from small cutter/patrol-type vessels, all the way up to the massive Star Cruisers, Star Destroyers, or Super-scale classes — to adequately fulfill the needs of a peacetime navy (like I said, it's not just border defense; the Navy is also responsible for securing shipping lanes against piracy and smugglers, search and rescue missions, disaster relief functions, among many other responsibilities).

The whole "Entire Republic fleet chilling in one system" thing is absolutely absurd, and only shows how little the writers actually considered just how frelling HUGE space is. ****, what you're describing is pretty much what happened to the US battleship fleet at Pearl Harbor...and it frankly didn't affect America's ability to wage war in the end (the battleships — except Arizona and Utah — were all refloated and returned to service, most of them were outdated as front-line surface combatants within a year or so by the likes of the South Dakota and ESPECIALLY the Iowa-classes,  and American strategy shifted towards the carriers which is what REALLY decided the naval war in the Pacific). Keep in mind that even if you knock out the active fleet, there's also the reserve fleet that gets maintained in a state of readiness, and can be brought online with little effort.

It's just a bad plot point.

This is why in my treatment I make the Hosnian System a single sector base rather than the whole shebang. It's a major enough installation that knocking it out could significantly hamper the Republic's ability to respond to the First Order in the short term, thus giving them time to establish a solid foothold, while acknowledging that the Republic if FRELLING HUGE and it would be virtually impossible to wipe out an entire galaxy-spanning space fleet with a single strike. It's far more forgiving to the suspension of disbelief.

Edited by Ambaryerno

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16 minutes ago, GreenDragoon said:

Unlike the PT and OT, yes?

The "Republic Has No Military" crap in the PT was stupid THEN, too, but at least they accounted for militia and guard units as opposed to "the First Order blows up one fleet and the Republic falls apart" in TFA/TLJ. As for the OT, it's implied the Empire DOES have tens of thousands of ships. Space is just THAT ****** big there's still places a Rebellion can hide (just like how real-world navies can't completely eradicate piracy).

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1 minute ago, Ambaryerno said:

The "Republic Has No Military" crap in the PT was stupid THEN, too, but at least they accounted for militia and guard units as opposed to "the First Order blows up one fleet and the Republic falls apart" in TFA/TLJ.

The same type of militia/guard units exist in the ST though. I think Bloodline makes the point that the new republic intentionally left defense mainly to each system.

2 minutes ago, Ambaryerno said:

As for the OT, it's implied the Empire DOES have tens of thousands of ships.

The entire fleet is, according to old legend sources, around 25‘000 stardestroyers and 2.4million ships. Which is a ridiculous number to have been built in 20 years and to be hunted down and destroyed in the one year between Endor and Jakku.

For comparison, the clone war had initially 3 million clones with an extra 5 later on. Some rationalize that to be times groups of tens to hundred thousands to make sense of it, but yeah... The us navy has on average 1000 people per ship. Of course that‘s not really correct but close enough, especially considering the larger size of star wars vessels. So the imperial navy would need roughly 2.4 billion men just to operate the ships. But of course a much larger number is necessary for garrisons and infantry.

To make it short: that number is not plausible given the numbers we have and that are canon.

But even if it was, that would not be enough as there are apparently 3.2 billion habitable systems.

TL;DR: No navy, neither PT, OT nor ST, is large enough anyway.

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45 minutes ago, Ambaryerno said:

The "Republic Has No Military" crap in the PT was stupid THEN, too, but at least they accounted for militia and guard units as opposed to "the First Order blows up one fleet and the Republic falls apart" in TFA/TLJ. As for the OT, it's implied the Empire DOES have tens of thousands of ships. Space is just THAT ****** big there's still places a Rebellion can hide (just like how real-world navies can't completely eradicate piracy).

Got to agree it is sort of stupid for the Republic to not have it but as you said they at least had small local defense fleets. They also were in a very different environment with being the only real large power outside of the Hutt Cartel and it wasn't like either of those two would pull a pin on a war when they could focus on other matters, and the Republic also had the benefit of Jedi they could dispatch to help stop a fight before it ever began. 

Then jump forward to the New Republic in our new canon and they only have what, at most a few hundred ships all at capital while everyone else has to deal with the rise in pirates and others threats on their own. The New Republic was doomed by incompetence the moment they wanted to wipe them out and brush all that mess away to have a Empire vs Rebels set up again. I mean if they really had to do it, it would have made more sense if the Republic was celebrating its anniversary with a grand celebration during the events of TFA so a large part of their fleet was there participating in that. That way you could get the crippling blow off, have a reason for a large number of ships there, and also play up a power being taken out/weakened while another rises. And of course it would allow for other writers to explore fleets that were off patrolling or dealing with pirates to either come to the aid of the Resistance or reorganize themselves to fight against the FO.

But of course, if in charge I'd likely change things very much from how they are, as I noted in my earlier comment. 

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