Saturday, July 12, 2014

The Kiris Asteroid Run

For hotshot Corellian pilots, there are few obstacles that provide a better chance to showcase their skills than an asteroid belt. In this case, space jockeys from around the sector gather once a year to test themselves agains the drifting rocks of the Kiris Belt. Some are independent pilots looking to demonstrate their abilities, while others are employed by local crime bosses and similar individuals who vie for bragging rights by showing off the talents of their underlings. Whatever the case, all who undertake the challenge of the Kiris Belt face a considerable challenge.

Navigating the Belt
At the start of a race, five subspace beacons are activated throughout the belt; they form the course that pilots must navigate. While it is entirely possible to make it through the twisting mass of rocks at a slow, steady pace with relatively little danger, one who does so isn't likely to win. To represent the speed and maneuvering with which each pilot handles the course, that character must decide on the difficulty of each pass attempted. Higher difficulties reflect moving at a higher speed, flying closer to the asteroids, and the like. A successful Piloting—Space check at that difficulty means the characters scores the appropriate point value, as listed on the table below. Failure, on the other hand, means that the character scores no points for that attempt, and that a collision occurs.

In the end, the winner is the character who is able to navigate the belt most quickly—that is, with the highest point total, representing the fastest speed and most delicate maneuvering.

Difficulty / Points
Easy / 1
Average / 2
Hard / 3
Daunting / 4
Formidable / 5

In the event that a competitor hits an asteroid, resolve the resulting damage as usual for collisions. The impact is treated as a minor collision, causing a critical hit but reduced by the ship's defense multiplied by ten. Should the failed check also generate despair, it is treated as a major collision, and thus the critical hit result is only reduced by the ship's defense multiplied by give. Refer to the sidebar on page 242 of the core rulebook for more details. These results are cumulative, of course, so multiple impacts result in an escalating amount of damage.

Involving Other Characters
As long as the PCs are operating a freighter, other characters can become involved in the action. Refer to the table on page 237 of the core rulebook for suggestions, especially the Plot Course, Copilot and Manual Repairs actions.

Other Hazards
Detailed here are some of the other hazards that could crop up during a race. They could be added as a result of threat generated by Piloting checks, or just to keep things lively.
  • A flock of mynocks is attracted to the party's ship; they reduce the ship's handling by one until someone manages to remove them.
  • A big asteroid happens to conceal a little one, adding a setback die to the next Piloting check attempted.
  • As the result of someone else's a collision, an asteroid is sent tumbling into the path of another ship, adding a setback die to the next Piloting attempt.

Using the Kiris Run in an Edge of the Empire Campaign
The Kiris run can be incorporated in a campaign in many different ways; a few of the possibilities are detailed here.
  • As mentioned above, crime bosses sometimes stage competitions here to show off the abilities of the pilots in their employ. Should the PCs owe obligation to one such (perhaps Tebora the Muun or Slarr the Hutt), they could be pressed into competing.
  • The Kiris Run also provides a great opportunity for making some side bets, especially if the PCs do a good job of promoting themselves.
  • This is a good chance to introduce NPC pilots, such as Seng Windrunner, Golthani Ru or Captain Odnah.
  • Not every being likes to play fair. A hotheaded young Corellian facing the PCs might decide to cheat, such as by sabotaging a system on the PCs vessel; treat the ensuing malfunction as a critical hit generated on the appropriate table from page 244 of the core rulebook.
  • In the event that a bad collision occurs, the PCs might find themselves staging a daring rescue of crew and passengers aboard a ship with a breached hull, racing against time before those aboard it are killed.

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