In the Footsteps of a Master
Contributing RPG Writer Tim Cox on Chronicles of the Gatekeeper
“And you said it was pretty here.”
Discover wild frontiers, unprecedented powers, and astonishing secrets in Chronicles of the Gatekeeper, the upcoming book-length adventure for the Star Wars®: Force and Destiny™ roleplaying game. When you and your companions find the holocron of Suljo Warde, a Jedi Master who mysteriously vanished, you embark on a transgalactic journey to discover what became of him. You soon discover that Warde was extraordinary even among Jedi: an explorer, general, and pioneer who developed a Force power that no-one had ever wielded before.
Your first steps in the wake of Suljo Warde take you to the Outer Rim forest-world of Arbooine, where the only sentient native species, the avian Sathari, dwell mostly in small settlements scattered among the branches in the forest canopy. Chronicles of the Gatekeeper provides plentiful details about Arbooine, its villages, and its wildlife, as well as rules for creating playable Sathari characters. In today’s preview, contributing RPG writer Tim Cox discusses creating Arbooine and the Sathari, and the important role of Morality in this adventure.
Tim Cox on the Upcoming Adventure
Writing the first book-length adventure for Force and Destiny was, needless to say, quite an exciting project. In particular, I was interested in exploring the game’s Morality mechanic and the impact of the characters’ decisions. Morality has always been a central theme of Star Wars, and Force and Destiny provides the ideal roleplaying system for exploring it, so moral dilemnas and their implications became a major focus of Chronicles of the Gatekeeper.
In the course of the adventure, the Player Characters discover the holocron of Suljo Warde, a Jedi Knight who fought in the Clone Wars during the last days of the Jedi Order. As a repository of Jedi knowledge, a holocron is a great asset for any group of player characters (PCs) to possess. This book is so named because the holocron’s gatekeeper, a Force-imbued holographic guardian, guides the PCs on an adventure in Warde’s footsteps in order to unlock the full potential of the holocron—and in order to acquire an incredible new Force power that Warde developed. Along the way, the PCs uncover the shocking truth of Warde’s final days and encounter terrible dangers that threaten to destroy them all.
A New Planet and Playable Species
The PCs first visit the remote and lush planet of Arbooine. Exploring a new world in the Star Wars galaxy was a great experience for me, and I hope players will enjoy this planet as much as I did. While traversing the forests of Arbooine, the PCs are going to encounter a number of perils, not the least of which is the highly venomous local wildlife. When they at last reach the tree-city of Quolas deep in the forests, the PCs will discover the aftermath – positive and negative – of Warde’s actions on Arbooine many years ago.
My favorite part of developing Arbooine was creating the Sathari. Descended from birds, the Sathari are quite at home in their tree-cities – although the PCs might not find tree-cities so comfortable! Developing this species provided an interesting and enjoyable challenge, and I’m thrilled with the final result. As always, the book’s artwork really brings the Sathari and their homeworld to life. Players may also select this reclusive avian species when creating characters for this story or other Force and Destiny adventures. This provides groups a great option if a replacement character is needed during the adventure, if a new player suddenly joins the campaign, or if the group simply could benefit from closer ties to Arbooine.
Moral Dilemnas and Dramatic Outcomes
In the course of the adventure, the PCs will uncover the true history of Suljo Warde’s final days, learning about the difficult moral choices he faced – and in some cases reliving them. The shadows of the Clone Wars weigh heavy still on the communities the PCs visit in Arbooine and elsewhere. The characters have more than one opportunity to set right some old wrongs – or callously ignore them.
One of my primary goals in Chronicles of the Gatekeeper was to ensure that the PCs have plenty of different options and avenues for pursuing their goals. Each episode presents the PCs with a difficult situation and plenty of challenging decisions. Every decision the characters make has an impact, for good or ill. In many parts of the adventure, the PCs must create their own path towards success. Throughout the book, GMs will find sidebars with advice on handling Morality and working from players’ decisions, no matter how unanticipated those decisions may be.
Of course, the adventure doesn’t stop at Arbooine. The trail of Warde’s legacy brings the PCs to two historically important worlds that fans are sure to recognize, where they will uncover further dark secrets and face greater dangers. The moral decisions facing the PCs on these planets will truly put them to the test – and the dark side is waiting for anyone who fails.
Thank you, Tim!
Beneath the towering, thick forest canopies of Arbooine, ferocious creatures, hostile Sathari, and unforeseen allies await you. Yet this Outer Rim planet is only the beginning of your journey in Chronicles of the Gatekeeper, and the heart of that journey is not what you encounter on the trail of Suljo Warde, but the difficult choices you must make. Those choices will determine whether you will use the Force to make the worlds you visit better, or unleash irreparable devastation. What will you leave in your wake?
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