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Episode 2096: The Sign of the Bore

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This is a principle you can use both when generating adventures and during the running of games. Come up with some mystery or unexplained event. The heroes need to figure out what caused it.

Make all of the expected and boring explanations wrong. The true answer is the most unexpected or unlikely thing. You can either decide in advance what that is, or just let it ride until game time. In the latter case, when the players start listing possibilities, you just go "Nope" for the first few things they think of. Then when they start getting really creative and coming up with more and more bizarre and unlikely explanations, you pick one of them to say "yes" to, and run with that. You don't literally need to say "no" or "yes" - you just moderate the game as if their first few (boring) guesses are wrong, and the really interesting one is correct.

Commentary by memnarch (who has not seen the movie)

The insidious thing about Nute Gunray possibly messing up the charts? How could an unadulterated copy of the map possibly be found? An assault on the First Order base could potentially find a backup copy, but good luck grabbing that before Nute the supercomputer notices and deletes it! Old broken ships? Perhaps; assuming they're still usable and somehow haven't been used in the last 60 years. And even that is assuming this is the point where Nute transferred into the computer! Who knows how long part of him has been hiding out in cyberspace on the Peace Moon.

Bah! I can think of a number of other improbable things that haven't been eliminated yet; some of which might actually be the movie plot! Like what if the map isn't actually a map? Unscramble the data in some fashion (extension type, encryption, metadata, container, etc.), and hey presto! It's actually a holo-message from Luke about where he went instead! Or how about the map is correct, but it's from >500 years in the past? Star Trek did a time travel plot for its reboot movies, and those kinds of plots can be very tricky to do satisfactorily. I already know that people were disappointed in the 9th movie, and a poorly done time travel plot ending would definitely explain that reception. Hm, that could also explain how that lightsaber was found again, presuming it is actually Anakin's/Luke's. And the Force Stasis ability! The other time description stuff could just be fluff, but it would take a lot to explain away freezing the bolt and then ignoring it while interrogating Poe and it would add quite a bit to an actual "Time Theme".

None of that answers the question of why R2-D2 was under the tarp though. This must have been a weird scene for the audience; Artoo doesn't talk in Space-English, I'm pretty sure BB-8 is the same way, and now here's Threepio, who's much more of the worrywart/comic relief type in the movies, come to translate. Though maybe that's changed some? The new red arm really stands out here, and perhaps that's made him more outgoing/adventurous. Or he received it after becoming more outgoing/adventurous and having an accident where the arm was completely lost.

Transcript

R2-D2: I’ve been thinking about this map thing since last week.
GM: Can you roleplay this in character?
R2-D2: So, I hear you’re having some problems with a map to Ahch-To?
BB-8: Well, yeah. There’s this curse that—
R2-D2: I don’t care about that.
BB-8: Also, every time I bring up the map, the conversation topic somehow gets changed.
R2-D2: Odd, but irrelevant. Go on.
BB-8: The oddest thing is it doesn’t match any navigation charts.
R2-D2: Aha. So: Either the map is wrong...
BB-8: Or the charts are wrong. That’s what I’m afraid of. It seems impossible for anyone but Nute Gunray.
R2-D2: That’s it. That’s what’s happened.
C-3PO: How can you be sure?
R2-D2: Once you eliminate the boring, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.


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Published: Tuesday, 04 January, 2022; 01:11:05 PST.
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