ARGH! Too Much Sci-Fi Inspirations!


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RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

I am having a gaming group problem, and I suspect that it isn't unique.

Can I keep everyone happy?


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By picking a tone and telling people "yo, dawgs, this is what we're playing" before anyone makes heir characters. :/ Good luck, man. That's always rough.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Wikrin wrote:
By picking a tone and telling people "yo, dawgs, this is what we're playing" before anyone makes heir characters. :/ Good luck, man. That's always rough.

Except ... If I did that, I can't count on having players.

Perhaps, I might get more traction by refining the question to find out what setting elements attract them to each work. (Questions I should ask of myself also.)


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You also may not have to incorporate everything in one. Maybe adventure by adventure has very different tones and inspirations.


Ask them what is it about these movies/shows that they like. If you can find a common ground you could perhaps build a game around that.

From what it looks like Battle Beyond the Stars is basically Seven Samurai in space. Star Wars (at least a New Hope) is Hidden Fortress in space. Firefly is just a western in space. So there is already a lot of things in common there.


Which tone does the core Pact Worlds setting most closely fit as written? Has their been any discussion on this?


Firefly and Star Wars are pretty easily interchangeable. Just tell the SW guy it's set in the outer rim somewhere.

@Lanathar- kind of none. Probably SW if you dumped entire regions into the home system and called it a day. With strangely lizard like Klingons on one frontier, tyranids on another, and RomulaVulcans pouting on Venus.


Go with the FATE session 0 idea, where the group comes together to build the setting and general storyline together. They way everyone has input and everyone can incorporate the aspects of the other genres that they like.

It also works for bringing the party together, as character creation is a group project and everyone has input on everyone's PC. You can link all the PCs together right from the beginning.

Scarab Sages

Lanathar wrote:
Which tone does the core Pact Worlds setting most closely fit as written? Has their been any discussion on this?

Babylon 5. The system is a loose alliance of several worlds that have been enemies in the past but are working together for protection against a greater threat. However, they may go to war against each other at very little provocation.

The Vesk and the pact worlds have been fighting for centuries. The eoxian bone fleet preys on whatever they can while the official eox government calls them renegades and does nothing to stop them. There are several shadowy organizations that are looking to advance thier goals without worrying about who might get killed.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Lanathar wrote:
Which tone does the core Pact Worlds setting most closely fit as written? Has their been any discussion on this?

Akiton (Starfinder Core, pp. 442-443) - for the Firefly

The others though are kind of out there. Here are come commonalities:

  • External Military Big Bad - Flash Gordon (Ming) and Battle Beyond The Stars (Sador)
  • Internal Military Big Bad - Firefly (the Alliance) and Star Wars (Emperor Palpatine)
  • Frontier feel - Firefly and Battle Beyond The Stars
  • Large Fleet Battles - Star Wars and Flash Gordon and Firefly (but only in the Big Damn Movie)


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Sorry, got rambling. :) But I love brainstorming ideas like this.

I'd suggest:

Being open about it if you haven't already. (not sure if you got those impressions as general vibe or if players outright stated those preferences) But it would be good for everyone to head what everyone else is looking for.

Rotate around. Every session might be a bit much, but each adventure/arc could focus on a blend of a couple of those and switch up with each arc. Again, if everyone is open about that, hopefully they can tolerate stuff that isn't their style if they know theirs is coming soon.

Plus, I find some of these mash ups can lead to some fascinating ideas. (What would it look like if a Firefly style crew appeared in a Flash Gordon-esque pulp sci-fantasy? I think that'd be pretty fascinating! I could totally see them unwillingly falling into being the ones stopping Ming the Merciless because they just want to be paid, but deep down Captain Mal is still a Browncoat at heart - plus going on a different genre style adventure helps emphasize their misfit nature as probably sticking together because they never really fit in anywhere else.)

Lastly, each is might be good at something different:

Battle Beyond the Stars is your basic "recruit a bunch of misfits to fight a battle" which works great as an intro to bring together an odd bunch inspired by such different things. It's more of a set up and an emphasis on a wide variety of races.

Star Wars stands out best as, well, Jedi (which can be the PC and some villains), fighting an evil Empire (which fits nearly every inspiration), and as a larger epic. The Joseph Campbell Hero arc that Star Wars fits so well is mostly a larger framing device rather than necessarily individual adventures.

Firefly is largely focused on a misfit crew trying to get by. Probably less about the story than the nature and motivation of the PCs themselves. (Plus they fit both the Battle Beyond the Stars band and as the "we're no heroes" of the early stages of Campbell's hero arc!)

Flash Gordon, to me, is largely a pulpy feel (and Star Wars is a direct descendant of those pulps just attuned to more modern tastes). It might influence the actual adventures more with being fantastic settings and grand adventures.

So, you just need a misfit band of various races and cultures that is brought together to protect some civilians from an evil threat. However, that threat is just part of a larger evil empire, and the misfit band has to scrape by and keep flying while traveling to fantastic worlds with exotic Flash Gordon-esque cultures, where they get sucked into grand, pulpy adventures as they slowly over the campaign realize their destiny to not just scrape by but to be the ones to finally rid the galaxy of the evil Empire. :) A Firefly group with a Battle Beyond the Stars hook going on Flash Gordon adventures while realizing their Star Wars destiny.

Either way, good luck with it! With luck, your campaign will naturally grow into something original that everyone can enjoy. :)

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Lord Fyre wrote:
I am having a gaming group problem, and I suspect that it isn't unique.[list]
  • One Player wants Battle Beyond The Stars.
  • Could be worse, they could have asked for Star Crash.

    https://youtu.be/pzfuNSpP0RA


    Or... Space Truckers!


    bookrat wrote:

    Or... Space Truckers!

    Hey Smokey and the Bandit in Space would be awesome!!!

    RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    Tim Statler wrote:
    Lord Fyre wrote:
    I am having a gaming group problem, and I suspect that it isn't unique.[list]
  • One Player wants Battle Beyond The Stars.
  • Could be worse, they could have asked for Star Crash.

    Actually, I have to admit that I like that film ...

    ... okay. I like Caroline Munro in that film ...

    ... okay, I like Caroline Munro's costumes in that film ...

    Dark Archive

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    I honestly can't figure out what the issue is. Those media have far more in common than they do different, and players can play whatever they'd like.

    So... just have your charming rogue freighter captain carting along a mystical energy sword wielding magic user around to planets that could have come from 2419.

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