Friday, January 5, 2018

Flights of Fandom: Star Wars Gaming

To me, Classic Star Wars is what Lucas had envisioned: a return to the pulpy, swashbuckling, never-tell-me-the-odds heroes against dastardly villians in a never-ending series of space opera cliffhangers and reversals.

But it also transcended that. In addition to the well-worn hero's journey, there was a celebration of friendship and loyalty, and an exultation in having close friends adventuring together and -- despite seemingly adversarial banter -- triumphing in the face of overwhelming odds.

Perhaps, in light of the conflict in fandom this day, it's time to explore what Star Wars means to us in our own circles of friends and gaming buddies -- through the classic Star Wars RPG!

Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game 30th Anniversary Edition

You can pre-order this limited edition recreation through the website of Fantasy Flight games, if you're eager to have the original edition of the book. I owned one of these way back when -- two of my prized possessions (I left it in the hands of a friend who has since drifted away) were the Star Wars RPG rulebook and sourcebook.

The price is a bit steep, and delivery to my country is always expensive. But hey, if I can pull together the creds -- and pay off Jabba first, of course -- who knows? The system really supported that seat-of-the-pants-adventuring feel, and the starship combat, chases, and melee combat resolution was fast and fun. And there was something magical about seeing all the technical specs, the in-universe ads and recruitement posters, and the pitch-perfect section on gamemastering that nailed what adventures in Star Wars are all about (based on the 3 original movies, anyway).

By the way: these books, for a time, were canon, and the basis for some of the Expanded Universe novels.

Classic System, Expanded Source Material

Of course, if you're not eager to cough up the creds for this limited edition set of books, you can always grab the classic West End Games system rules online. There's a generic line, now in the care of Nocturnal Media, that you can use to run your space opera games (d6 Space) with the same ruleset as Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game. You can even grab the supplement (d6 Space Ships), so that your interstellar travels aren't limited to a Stock Light Freighter.

And you can of course go to places and settings that were never covered in the chronicles of adventures a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away:
  • there's Bill Coffin's Septimus setting, which uses the same system, which will allow adventuring inside a Dyson Sphere and trying your luck against clashing factions within.
  • there's Exilium by Fire Ruby Designs, which is a setting that allows you to play post-humans in a planning-spanning setting called the Flame Worlds.
and there are a number of resources out there online that you can search for that support the Classic Star Wars ruleset and setting.

Me, I'm trying to carve out time to read the new Star Wars RPGs by Fantasy Flight Games, but I'm a bit confused by all the offerings. Staying with the classic theme of this post, I'd probably target the Star Wars: Force and Destiny RPG.


  1. we still have the original two (hard-cover) books for this one !! Thank you for telling of this re-release... and a great weekend to you and yours...


That's my side of things. Let me know what you think, my friend.