22 September 2015 | Star Wars: Age of Rebellion

Outer Rim and Defiant Core

Preview the Rebel Bases of Strongholds of Resistance

“Sir, the Hoth system is supposed to be devoid of human forms.”
   –Admiral Piett, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

In Star Wars™, a Rebel base is more than a command center or weapons warehouse—it is a home, hospital, school, and sanctuary. They may be scattered throughout the galaxy in secret locations, but these bases are the essential and vulnerable organs of the Rebellion, and could kill the Rebellion if discovered and destroyed. The Empire knows this full well—hence their determination to get the Rebel base’s location from Leia using any means necessary. 

Rebel bases are also integral to Star Wars®: Age of Rebellion™. They give your party a place to repair your ship, heal your wounds, analyze intelligence, and formulate the next mission plan. They are hives of military, political, and social activity, filled with diverse personalities united chiefly by their determination to overthrow the Empire. Your group's mission may be launched from a Rebel base, or you may be tasked to supply and defend one. 

The upcoming sourcebook Strongholds of Resistance introduces several Alliance worlds and Rebel bases to Age of Rebellion, opening up incredible new environments for your roleplaying adventures. Our first preview looked at three of the Alliance worlds described: Kinyen, Mon Cala, and Sullust. Today’s preview will look at three of the new Rebel bases: two that are iconic and important locations in the Star Wars canon and an original one that you can develop and expand over the course of your campaign. 

Dwelling with the Past

In the farthest reaches of the Outer Rim lies the Polis Massa asteroid field: the scattered remains of a shattered planet. Hundreds of years ago, a race of petite, telepathic sentients settled the asteroids and eventually began archeological excavations, determined to uncover evidence connecting them to the long-lost Eellayin who originally inhabited Polis Massa. The central research base of this civilization, now known as Polis Massan, has long boasted state-of-the-art medical and biological research facilities. In fact, it was at this base that Obi-Wan Kenobi stood by Padmé Amidala as she died giving birth to twins. 

The Polis Massans opposed the Empire since its foundation and for years offered wounded Rebels sanctuary and medical care. Only recently has the research facility expanded into a fully-fledged Rebel installation equipped with an X-wing squadron, a Y-wing squadron, training areas and a command center. The original research center is still fully operational, complete with surgical suites, archeological excavations, a biomedical research station, and a food production facility.

At the Polis Massa base, you might find yourself hunting out Imperial infiltrators or fending off a Star Destroyer’s attack. You may become involved in researching biochemical weapons technology or coordinating Rebel efforts across neighboring Outer Rim systems from the safety of subterranean tunnels. You may also choose to play one of the shrewd, inquisitive Polis Massans, whose natural telepathy both substitutes for speech and instills in them a deep kindness and compassion for all living things. 

An Iconic Echo

After the Battle of Yavin, a new base for Rebel High Command was speedily established on the uninhabited, frozen world of Hoth: Echo Base. The planet’s inhospitable climate long kept Hoth off Imperial radar, but that same climate inhibits every operation on the Rebel base. Since simply venturing outside of the glacial tunnels means risking your life, all occupants of the base are issued cold weather survival gear. A herd of Tauntauns had to be imported since the engines of airspeeders failed in the extreme cold. 

Echo Base was hastily constructed and much of it is still being built. You may be charged with clearing ice caverns of ferocious wampas so that facilities can be expanded. An avalanche may close off part of the barracks or hangars, launching a high-stakes and time-sensitive rescue operation to save anyone imprisoned in the ice and snow. You might even be dispatched on a clandestine supply run to smuggle droids, weapons, and even food back to the Hoth system. 

Echo Base is also, of course, the iconic opening setting of The Empire Strikes Back, which follows Darth Vader’s discovery of the hidden base, the Imperial attack and the hurried evacuation. Strongholds of Resistance offers suggestions for Game Masters who want to incorporate this sequence of events into their campaign, including a range of plot hooks for beginning and advanced-level PCs. 

The Defiant Core

Late in the Clone Wars, a Separatist Recusant-class destroyer, the Nova Defiant, was shot down from orbit and crash-landed on a sparsely populated planet of the Triton system in the Outer Rim. Separatists salvaged the ship’s usable portions and hauled them into a giant cave near the crash site, constructing a hidden base out of the wreckage. They discovered that the cave, large as it was, connected through sinkholes to an even larger network of caverns hundreds of meters below the planets surface. But before the base was very old, the Clone Wars ended, and it was abandoned. 

Rumours of the Nova Defiant crash site have circulated for years, but very recently a small collective of Rebels at last discovered the wreckage and began to establish an operational base called Defiant Core. Your group may be the ones who discover the site and begin work, you may arrive at a later stage as operations and facilities are expanding, or you may be transferred there when Defiant Core is at last ready to house a squadron of Y-wings. Your group may even determine what Defiant Core becomes at each stage of its evolution: for example, whether it remains a small, secretive place for Rebel commanders to meet or becomes a massive starfighter training, maintenance, and deployment site. 

Make Yourself At Home

For many who join the Rebellion, a hidden base is the closest thing they have to home. Aces, Spies, and Diplomats tend to pause at base as a reprieve between missions or to hear the latest news. Commanders, Soldiers, and Engineers may have be stationed at a base for the length of its operation; new Recruits reside in the barracks for the length of their training. Any of the bases described in Strongholds of Resistance may therefore become home to your PCs. But Strongholds of Resistance also enables you to make these bases truly your own, not just a setting or a space, but the firm ground that supports your adventures and connects your group’s activities to the whole of the Star Wars universe.

Pre-order Strongholds of Resistance from your local retailer today! 

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