DM Screen 43 – Upping the Ante

In addition to showcasing how large the League had become, I also wanted this final arc to have a wide variety of different adventures for our heroes to participate in. We had the stealth- and combat-centric jailbreak of last episode, so I wanted to mix things up and throw some more social challenges at the PCs this time around. This episode is also significantly less structured on a beat-by-beat basis than normal—I wanted to give the players lots of room to do what sounded fun to them, so all I really gave them was the setup and then just rolled with whatever they gave me.

The Empire has been keeping a very tight lid on any information about Doom’s secret project, which makes attempting to put up any real opposition to it almost impossible. Recently, however, some of the League’s informants reported that the Empire had to hire a bounty hunter as extra security for a transport ship associated with this project. This bounty hunter may be the one person outside of the Empire with any meaningful knowledge about what the Imperials are up to and is the most significant lead that the League have at this point.

Sadly, information is a little unclear as to who, exactly, this bounty hunter is, but the League have been able to narrow it down to three potentials: the massive Trandoshan named Bossk, the ruthless Duros named Cad Bane, or the armored human named Boba Fett. Your allies have pulled some strings and managed for all three bounty hunters to win free rooms at the swanky Yarith Bespin hotel and casino here in Cloud City. The five of you recently arrived with the intent of figuring out which of the bounty hunters has the information you’re looking for, and then retrieving that information through any means necessary.

There’s an additional complication, however. Shortly after docking your ship and taking a cloud car to the casino, you received word that there’s a large contingent of Imperials en route to Cloud City now. If you’re still here when the Imperials arrive, you can forget about this plan going smoothly. You only have a small window of time to get the information on the project and get out.

After some cursory scouting, you’ve determined that Cad Bane is seated in the casino currently engaged in a game of sabacc with four other hotel guests. Bossk is seated in an arena within the hotel, watching  a series of droid combat duels. Boba Fett is alone in his hotel room. There are five of you, three targets, and not a lot of time. What do you do?

Cad Bane

The casino is moderately busy at this time, with guests wandering among the gaming tables and slot machines and servant droids walking or rolling between the tables and the bar, serving drinks and food at guest request. You see your target seated at one of the larger sabacc tables toward the back corner of the casino: blue skin, large red eyes, dressed in a wide-brimmed hat and duster. His easy, relaxed confidence tells everyone looking at him that he’s extremely skilled at the game—a statement backed up by the large pile of chips in front of him.

Cad Bane
F: Rm
A: In
S: Gd
E: Ex
R: Gd
I: Gd
P: Gd

Health: 100         Karma: 30

Blaster Pistols (2): 15 damage each, can fire both without penalty each round, or unleash a rapid-fire storm of bolts to target everyone in one area for 20 damage each
Gauntlet Stunners: Str damage plus target must roll Endurance vs. Stun
Flamethrower: Rm damage and target must make Agility check or be set on fire
Rocket Boots: Ex flight

Bossk

You step into the arena, a huge space dominated by rows and rows of raked seating facing a central elevated stage. The crowd gathered here alternatively cheers or boos raucously as a pair of droids battle viciously on the stage—there are a number of weapons scattered around the stage and, as you watch, one of the combatants, a black skeletal robot, picks up what looks like a spear with electricity crackling at one end and decapitates its opponent with a single swing. The droid’s head flies several feet before impacting a force field set up at the edge of the stage and dropping down to the ground in a shower of sparks. The remaining droid raises the spear in triumph as the crowd applauds and credits change hands. You spot your quarry: a figure over six feet tall dressed in an orange flight suit. While humanoid shaped, Bossk looks decidedly dinosaur-ish, with greenish-brown scales, massive hand and foot claws, and a sleek, predatory head with orange eyes and a mouth full of pointed fangs.

Bossk
F: Rm
A: Rm
S: Ex
E: Ex
R: Gd
I: Gd
P: Gd

Health: 100         Karma: 30

Blaster Rifle: Ex damage
Stun Grenade Launcher (10 grenades): All targets in one area must roll Endurance vs. Stun
Flamethrower: Rm damage and target must make Agility check or be set on fire

Boba Fett

(Once the PC(s) spot Fett) You’re just guessing that this guy is human, because his body is completely covered. He wears thick gray fabric over most of his body, with armored boots, gauntlets, a chestplate, and a helmet with a narrow black visor as added protection. A number of obvious barrels and weapon systems protrude ominously from various points on his armor, and he sports something which is almost certainly a jetpack on his back.

Boba Fett
F: In
A: Rm
S: Gd
E: Ex
R: Gd
I: Gd
P: Gd

Health: 100         Karma: 30

Body Armor: Gd
Blaster Carbine: Ex damage, can fire twice per round
Grenade Launcher: Rm damage to one area
Flame Thrower: Rm damage and target must make Agility check or be set on fire
Missile Launcher (4 missiles): In damage to one area
Stun Grenade (4): All targets in one area must roll Endurance vs Stun
Whipcord: Rm to grapple up to one area away
Jet Pack: Ex flight

The bounty hunter with the information the heroes are looking for is Cad Bane. If the heroes manage to get their hands on his datapad, they find a fair amount of information on the Empire’s secret project—including, critically, its location.

And that’s all I had! Everything else that happened during the episode—the sabacc game, the unexpected fight with the enchanted droid, etc.—was all improvised on the spot based on what the players gave me. I really enjoy throwing in prep-light sessions like this from time to time as it allows me to play a lot looser with the format and gives the players a chance to flex their creativity in a new way.

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