250 – The GM Experience

We have David and Leslie on to talk about our methods of preparation, what we find needed, and how to encourage a new GM into running a second campaign.

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249 – The Period Tale

Playing in the Old Republic Era has no stats behind it, nor does the Sequel Era. We have ideas on how to still use the system to tell amazing tales and not worry about the mechanics behind everything.

Things talked about in this episode:

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Mask of the Pirate Queen Act 1, Episode 8 – “Must Go Faster”

Gand down! Having made it to the jungle floor of Black Wind Crater, our Heroes press forward towards the Pirate Queen’s base with a critically injured Kaav in tow.

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248 – The Composition Tale

Translating the inspiration for a campaign into what the players hear and see is hard. We have a few ideas on how to take that comncept that evoked your desire to run the adventure into what your players are having a blast in doing.

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Mask of the Pirate Queen Act 1, Episode 7 – “Terminal Velocity”

As part of Barawyn’s “cunning” plan, the Heroes prepare to rappel down into the jungle of Black Wind Crater.

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247 – The Rumble Tale

An episode of Heroes makes Ben wonder about different ways of presenting encounters to the players. Rissa and Ben have some ideas on how to make sure that the players weapons aren’t always the first thing grabbed for.

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Mask of the Pirate Queen Act 1, Episode 6 – “The Best Laid Plans”

When someone pays attention to Kaav’s slicing efforts, the crew does the only logical thing: they start a brawl in a diner.

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246 – The Player Pet Tale

Recounting a few missteps in our own history we have a few ideas on how to make the pets of a player matter to the game and to the players in ways that aren’t always obvious.

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Mask of the Pirate Queen Act 1, Episode 5 – “Diners, Dives, and Destruction”

Two leads down, the crew of the Sky on Fire duck into a diner for a bite to eat and to conduct a little slicing into Sororonet.

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245 – The Growing Threat Tale

We said it was going to be a series, and we’re starting it. Threat is a tricky thing to use since it’s very easy to undervalue it, we have ideas on how to make it more vibrant and how to not try to steal the success of a roll with threat.

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Legends of the Hydian Way – The Approaching Storm

I recently managed to put into words a phenomenon in fantasy or science fiction fandoms that has bothered me for a long time, and I call it The Cantina Theory. It goes like this: early on in the life of a fictional universe, everything is new. Just like the Cantina scene in A New Hope, all these interesting creatures and aliens are just there. Anything goes. Later, subsequent entries in the series cement and define what was previously established. That’s a Rodian. This is an Aqualish. Etc. From that point forward it’s very rare to see many new creatures being introduced, because these original “cantina dwellers” have become signifiers to consumers that what they are watching or reading is a Star Wars story. We like the familiar, it makes sense.

Today’s story, however, spends a relatively short amount of time up front making sure we feel comfortably Star Wars before setting off to an adventure in completely unknown territory. We’ve gotten too comfortable at the bar, so Alan Dean Foster’s here to throw us out of the Cantina.

Welcome to Legends of the Hydian Way, the chronicle of my attempt to read through and review all the novels that make up mainline Legends canon in chronological order. May the Force be with me.

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244 – The New Advantage Tale

We start our discussion about the extra mechanics in the FFG narrative system with advantage, as we start talking about the scale of what makes one advantage a small boost versus making three or four amazing and how to scale mechanically and narratively between.

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Mask of the Pirate Queen Act 1, Episode 4 – “Good Neighbors”

One lead and a rental speeder down, the crew turns their attention to the remaining two leads: the fence and the network. Which will they investigate first?

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Legends of the Hydian Way – Outbound Flight

Despite my love of all things Star Wars, I haven’t kept up as much with the new books and shows coming out of Lucasfilm and DelRay recently. Honestly I think I’ve held myself back, wanting to use this project as a farewell cruise through the Star Wars I grew up on before diving into the fresh and unexplored waters of the Disney canon.

Because of this lack of exposure, I am now in the strange position of talking about Grand Admiral Thrawn without having any true idea of what many fans think of the character now that he’.s been reintroduced in Rebels. What little research I’ve done while avoiding spoilers for new canon media I’ve yet to consume indicates that creating author Timothy Zahn does not consider the two incarnations separate characters and that those of you coming to this from a Disney-canon-only background should have a fairly good idea of who Thrawn is. So without any more hedging, let’s dive in to Outbound Flight, by Timothy Zahn.

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243 – The Indecisive Tale

We talk about methods of how you as a player and a GM can move a disagreement at the table between characters and players along to some form of resolution, with a few examples from our own tables.

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Mask of the Pirate Queen Act 1, Episode 3 – “A Better Leg To Stand On”

While investigating the ex-Sorority enforcer Graf, the crew was ambushed in the streets. Blaster bolts, knocked over trash cans, and a speeder on fire is just the start as our Heroes defend themselves.

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Legends of the Hydian Way – Jedi Quest Books 7-11

Up until now in our look at Jedi Quest the series has largely followed Jedi Apprentice’s pattern of one or two off books with an overarching villain lurking in the background. Much to my surprise and delight, the latter half of the series becomes a continuous storyline dealing with the hunt for villain Granta Omega.

Welcome to Legends of the Hydian Way, the chronicle of my attempt to read through and review all the novels that make up mainline Legends canon in chronological order. May the Force be with me.

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242- The Unexpected Tale


Surprises can be an amazing thing, and we have a few ideas on how to turn a cliff hanger into something that the players will never expect. From fantastic settings to NPCs that will haunt your players long after they’re put back in the box, we have ideas.

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Mask of the Pirate Queen Act 1, Episode 2 – “An Exchange of Resources”

One Pirate Queen. Three Leads. 40,000 credits up for grabs. Our Heroes take their first actions in locating the Pirate Queen’s trail and make preparations for the dangers to come

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Legends of the Hydian Way – Jedi Quest Books 1-6

You would be forgiven for thinking that the Anakin Skywalkers of The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones were entirely separate people. Most of this is easily explained by the ten year time gap, but just what happened during those ten years to amplify Anakin’s anger issues and wear away at his gentle, compassionate side?

Welcome to Legends of the Hydian Way, the chronicle of my attempt to read through and review all the novels that make up mainline Legends canon in chronological order. May the Force be with me.

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241 – The Conflicted Party Tale

An explosion of discussion happens in this episode about using the conflict mechanic as two GMs talk about their strategy for completely integrating the mechanic into their adventures and sessions.

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Legends of the Hydian Way – Rogue Planet

When I started this project, I wasn’t expecting to have to keep asking all of you readers out there to do quite so much remembering and pin-sticking. Legends has so many call-forwards and retroactively written tie-ins to events that happen later in the timeline it can get a bit exhausting. Two weeks ago with Lockdown we had a very minor call-forward (more of an in-joke reference, really) to the New Jedi Order series with Maul’s boxing match against a Yuuzahn Vong. This week, the whole book is an NJO tie in!

Welcome to Legends of the Hydian Way, the chronicle of my attempt to read through and review all the novels that make up mainline Legends canon in chronological order. May the Force be with me.

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240 – The Momentum Tale

We talk about how to end a scene and how to keep narrative momentum up when interest feels like it’s flagging. From adventure starts and getting that spur into adventure to the pacing when your player group is traveling.

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Mask of the Pirate Queen Act 1, Episode 1 – “A Proposal in Paradise Part 2”

Back from their vacation, the crew of Sky on Fire: the bounty hunter Barawyn, the card dealing droid Billie, the Gand technician Kaav, and their newest crew member the Pantoran doctor Vastrano travel to Saleucami to hear a job proposal from an old ally.

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Legends Of The Hydian Way – The Phantom Menace

We have, at long last, reached the first film in the Star wars franchise. 20,000 years of galactic history in under a year ain’t bad! Today we’re looking back at the novelization of The Phantom Menace. I plan to take a slightly different approach to the film novelizations in this project. Since most of you reading this have seen the films, I’m going to be focusing more on where the novels differ. Do they add new scenes? Do they recontextualize parts the film? And do these changes add or detract from the story? Let’s find out!

Welcome to Legends of the Hydian Way, the chronicle of my attempt to read through and review all the novels that make up mainline Legends canon in chronological order. May the Force be with me.

Continue reading “Legends Of The Hydian Way – The Phantom Menace”