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Episode 1944: Spirits of the Dead


If you're running an adventure and previous characters die, say in a Total Party Kill, and the players create new characters and continue the adventure, then you need some sort of justification for why the characters sort of have some knowledge of prior events.

For example, let's say a party is halfway through exploring a series of caves infested with goblins and hobgoblins and assorted other nasty monsters. They stumble into the lair of an ogre, which turns out to be too much of a challenge for them, and suffer a TPK.

Another party of brave adventurers takes up the mantle of finishing the exploration and clearing out of the caves... But wait. How do they know what caves have been explored already, or even about the existence of the caves in the first place?

What if the annotated map that the first party was making happened to blow out of the ogre lair on a gust of wind, get carried several miles through the air to a nearby keep—an outpost of humans fortified against the wilds—and land right in front of another party of heroes looking for adventure and fortune?

Sound far-fetched?

What if I tell you that this actually happened in the first Dungeons & Dragons game that I ever played, back in the 1980s? (Bonus geek points for those who recognise the adventure.)

Commentary by memnarch (who has not seen the movie)

Hiding! That'll work just fine, assuming the floor panels block life sign scanners. I was never really quite clear if that was the case in the previous use of the floor panel hiding spot, but there wouldn't have been any other way for the heroes to hide from the Death Star scanners right? It would make sense for a smuggler like Han Solo to have something that would block scanners, but I would have thought that would be more for goods rather than people/lifeforms.

Also that's very quick and clever in-character justification for why they would use Jim's idea. I am a bit surprised Pete only has a staff as a weapon on the ship; blasters must have been not optimal or something for Rey's build. I guess BB-8's tools aren't technically weapons, so maybe that's why they weren't counted. Hmm. And except for the grapple darts, those are all short range tools so they wouldn't be much good except for kneecapping anyone that shows up anyway.

Scene setting; the lighting used here seems oddly harsh. Sure, the idea is that the ship is now in the space-wyrm ship which was glowing very red, but here BB-8, Finn, and Rey are inside the ship and the emergency lighting was not nearly this red. This doesn't really feel like the typical Star Wars aesthetic here, but perhaps that's just an artifact from the static image use. I know slow motion video can affect how a scene, especially a play in a sports game, is perceived when compared to real time video, but I don't remember hearing about static images having the same effect when they're laid out sequentially to copy the video.

Commentary by Keybounce (who has not seen the movie)

Are they really repeating Episode IV this strongly?

  • Ship grabbed in a tractor beam.
  • Players hide under the floorboards.
  • Ship is believed to be empty.
  • Players use this to sneak into the enemy ship.
  • Players disable the tractor beam and get away.

All we need is some sort of "Let's rescue someone out of this ship", and it's a perfect replica.

Meanwhile, we have Poe speaking from off-screen, giving commentary. Hmm. Poe is played by Jim (now), and Greedo was played by Jim (back in IV). How about that.


Rey: We need a plan.
BB-8: If Poe were alive he’d come up with a plan.
Rey: We need a good plan.
Poe: {dead} Ooh! Hide under the floor panels. Then when your captors come on board they’ll think the ship is deserted and haunted and leave it alone.
Rey: We’ve only got my staff as a weapon. We need the element of surprise.
Finn: Hide under the floor panels?
Rey: Right! An ambush! These masks will muffle our breathing.
Finn: Silent like ghosts.
BB-8: Guess he doesn’t even need to be alive.
Poe: {dead} Spooooky....

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Published: Thursday, 14 January, 2021; 01:11:04 PST.
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