Before I get into the chapter summary though, I’d like to first talk a little about West End Games and my experience with Star Wars role playing games.
I was introduced to role playing games, otherwise known as RPG’s, many years ago. A buddy of mine used to play with his high school friends, but after going to university, he and his friends drifted apart. He and I became friends at university, and we both shared a love of Star Wars. He asked me if I ever played a role-playing game, to which I replied, no. He started recounting for me all the adventures he and his friends used to have, and he described them with such vivid detail and passion.
It was the vivid detail that grabbed my attention. Pretty soon, he had his sourcebooks out, and before long we were rolling my first character. Of all the templates to choose from, the one that attracted me most was the gambler. In a short matter of time, a few more people joined our circle, and before long, we had Sunday afternoon games at his place that would last for hours.
Whenever my buddy and I talk on the phone (he lives overseas now) we still talk about some of our Star Wars adventures.
West End Games was the company that produced the Star Wars role-playing game, and they used a D6 system, which means the die they used for the game were six sided. Of all the RPG systems out there, I still think that WEG’s D6 system was the easiest to use, and the most effective to play. WEG went out of business a while back, and the Star Wars role-playing game was purchased by Wizards of the Coast. They changed the game to the D20 system, and in doing so ruined the game for me. Wizards of the Coast revamped the core rule book a little while back, and from all reports that I’ve read have improved the game. But as it is, I haven’t played in a long while. I still purchase the sourcebooks though, and it is from a sourcebook that my post gets its impetus today.
Star Wars source books are considered Canon by Lucasfilm. I find source books extremely interesting to read, as they give nitty-gritty detail to almost anything in the Star Wars Universe.
Tales of the Jedi companion, chapter 4: Sith Reborn, gives us some nitty-gritty details into the story of Ulic Qel-dorma and the Beast Wars of Onderon.
Five characters are flushed out in further detail in this text, they are: Queen Amanoa, her husband Kind Ommin, the failed Jedi Freedon Nadd, the queen’s assistant Novar, and finally Warb Null. For this post I’ll only deal with three of them: The King, the Queen, and Freedon Nadd.
In Chapter four, Sith Reborn, we are given a small narrative of Queen Amanoa before the arrival of the three Jedi sent by Master Jeth. Before the arrival of the Jedi, she killed a malcontent in her throne room using Sith magic. Some background is then provided on the Queen. Apparently, she did not completely embrace the darkside of the force when she first encountered it. Her husband, King Ommin, was a descendant of Freedon Nadd, and it was the spirit of Nadd that converted the king to a user of darkside magic. When the Queen had seen her husband under the Sith’s spell, she did all she could to get him to turn from his wicked ways. But the old saying holds true, “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” and this is what happened to the Queen. Unable to help her husband, she embraced the teachings of the Sith, and after her husband’s disappearance, began to commune with the spirit of Freedon Nadd. Needless to say, Queen Amanoa was hostile to the Jedi, right from the start.
King Ommin is an interesting character as well. A descendant of Freedon Nadd, it seems that his fate had always been sealed. After embracing the full power of the darkside, he was summarily crippled by it. As we learn by his story, full control over the power of the darkside has its price, and the price he payed was the loss of his ability to control his own body. I guess controlling the darkside is like making a deal with the devil – you think everything is going to work out in your favour, or you have control of the situation, only to learn in the end that nothing will go the way you want it to, and in fact, you are not in control.
Ulic Qel-Dorma and the Beast Wars of Onderon gave very little detail on the personage of Freedon Nadd. He operates as this master puppet behind the scenes, controlling the action. The Tales of the Jedi companion fills in some blanks for us.
For my next post I’ll be moving on to the Saga of Nomi Sunrider – for real this time.