Greetings all, and welcome to The Chronicles Crew page. This section has a bit of a documentary feel to it, and details the story behind the Chronicles – call it a kind of “Making Of”.
The Moon Swing Chronicles (then called The Fakir Sector Campaign) was begun on the 25 April 1994 on Anzac Day (a day celebrated in Australia and New Zealand where we remember those who have fought and died for our country). The Campaign was basically created to quell the wanting of a new group of players that I started playing Dungeons and Dragons with, who desperately wanted to play Star Wars. This created much of what you see here today. Our first session was that of Tatooine Manhunt and went from about 9am till 2am the following day. That was the longest session I have ever run.
The game started with Mark Rogerson (Gan Jan-Ru), Felice Gordon (Ledala Korewa), Korinne Harvey (Karahaa), Craig Pomfret (Troy Hasulak), Sean Kennedy (Daurek Lennison), and Julie Pomfret (Tanlee O’Brien – later re-named Jandaloo). The overall story had no main plot – at first – other than the group was from a Rebel Cell on Helkio which had been compromised by an Imperial spy. The story went like this: Alliance Command had seen how well the group worked together. Since there was trouble brewing in the Fakir Sector, they gave them Mission Group status and sent them out to the Fakir Sector Force. They were initially called Mission Group Alpha. This was later changed to Thermal Force – mainly because the group had a habit of blowing things up using Thermal Detonators.
We have had a few ups and downs with real life events which have caused a few changes in the make-up of our crew.
Firstly Korinne’s husband Mike joined the rag tag team as Vi Yingyang, an ex-Imperial Scout. Some time after, a friend of mine, Justin Scott (who had played in my previous campaigns) joined the fray, but only as a guest appearance as he was visiting from another state. Shortly after, we lost our commanding officer Daurek Lennison (Sean) and Tanlee O’Brien (Julie) due to some unforeseen circumstances. In the process however, we gained Sharon Bishop who offered to play Tanlee (after changing the name to something a little more Star Wars – like Jandaloo).
We gained a few players along the way such as Eddie Radell (the Rodian Bordo – a bit of a guest appearance type character), and Craig Campbell (Lt. Kyan DeGritz). Shortly after, we unfortunately lost Craig Pomfret due to a change of residence which some distance away, and later Craig Campbell because of a work transfer to another Regional Area.
We managed to pick up Peter Pfeffer (also an ex-player from my first campaign) who has proven to be very valuable in the creation of what you see here. The reason is that Peter has been helping me with the background of The Chronicles, especially in the behind the scenes of Dragon Squadron.
We also took under our wing James Martin (a friend who I met whilst collecting Star Wars toys), and Tony Hanrahan (a friend of Sharon’s who is a huge Star Wars enthusiast). Unfortunately Tony was unable to make most sessions due to a new job, and so his character Jaluun became an NPC who made regular guest appearances. Jaluun soon after left the group as Tony told us that he was not going to be able to make any sessions.
During all of this, we lost both Mike and Korinne due to location, and a few other factors.
With all these people coming and going, I was lucky enough to become married to Felice (who plays Ledala). About a year later, Mark (Gan) and Sharon (Tanlee) also got hitched.
Our last addition was that of Craig Clayton. Craig is a huge fan of Star Wars, but is only new to Role Playing. Craig used to work with Sharon and one day, after a little discussion with her, asked if he could join our merry band. Craig has fallen in love with the Chronicles (he’s only human after all), and has taken on the role of Kobe Tenchu, an ex-Imperial Commando. With regard to the Dragon Squadron campaign, Craig was nice enough to take over the role of Kyan DeGritz, who was previously played by Craig Campbell. This was greatly appreciated, as Kyan has a huge back-story that I wanted to use in the campaign.
Michael Harvey returned to the group for a short time after an unfortunate divorce with Korinne. As Michael had a huge hand in creating Gaaliette, he decided to take her as a character for the short time while he returned. As a result, we were able to develop Gaaliette’s story a little more.
2001 – CHRONICLESEND
Alas, the campaign took a turn for the worse in 2001 when circumstances prevented people from attending sessions, and some of the players moved away to study and raise families. Tried as I may to keep the Chronicles afloat, it was not to be. This meant, unfortunately, that the campaign stopped half way through Episode 11 of Chapter 5, which was an episode and a half from finishing a major plot arc. The campaign then went into a permanent hiatus.
Will the Chronicles return at some point? Well it did in a way when I continued with my second major Star Wars RPG Campaign called The Arc Raider Legacy in 2002. We used the then new D20 Star Wars RPG from Wizards of the Coast, along with some of the plots I had started to develop for the Chronicles. The game was set post The Phantom Menace but alas, that too collapsed close to the end of the campaign’s run.
So what is in store for The Moon Swing Chronicles? Well as I write this new section of the story, its 13 years later in 2014. Many a fun time was had and fond memories are shared of the exploits of the Moon Swing and her crew. Since then, we’ve had a revised D20, D20 Saga and the new Fantasy Flight Version of the game which takes us to that galaxy, far, far away. Only time will tell.
METHODS OF MADNESS
During the campaign, we decided to take a look at a different side to the proverbial Role Playing coin. As a result we took it upon ourselves to expand on the setting we were using, namely the Fakir Sector. Some of the players had secondary characters they had created for one reason or another (e.g. because their primary character was injured, their character was on training, or because a player got sick of playing the same-old character). Luckily, all of these characters fitted nicely (some with a few minor modifications) into this new setting. Other characters were also created by players who for one reason or another, didn’t have an extra character.
Our first (and thus far only) attempt was Dragon Squadron which was connected to The Moon Swing Chronicles by two short sessions entitled Juanita (a story where the group had to go and rescue a captured fighter prototype – the H-Wing – from the grasps of a pirate gang. This was a modified version of the module in the Star Wars RPG: Revised and Expanded Rulebook) and The Laarkorynn (an adventure with Tanlee and Karahaa as the Thermal Force co-stars of Dragon Squadron – where the group had to rescue a Wookiee colony which had been captured by the Empire). During the adventure Laarkorynn, Dragon Squadron managed to disable the Revenant, a Nebulon-B frigate which was later converted to The Dragon’s Lair. This enabled us to have a point of operations for Dragon Squadron to work from. These two adventures were followed up by Let There Be Dragons (formally titled The Stone of Fire), Dragon Squadron’s first adventure, and linked in nicely to one of the main story arcs involving the uprising of pirate gangs in the Parmic and surrounding sectors.
We all found that it was easy to start the Dragon Squadron Campaign, and was an interesting tool to create situations that the main group would not normally do. It also gave me the ability to create plot devices that Dragon Squadron could put into motion, to which Thermal Force could follow-up on (and visa-versa). Another thing which the Dragon Squadron Campaign introduced was Val Corestar, and the character’s player Peter Pfeffer. Peter and I had started playing Star Wars: The Role Playing Game back in 1988 and it was good to get back into role playing with him. Once we returned to playing Thermal Force, Peter needed a second character, and so took on the role of Ace Knight, the flamboyant gambler.
A PICTURETELLS A MILLIONSTORIES
The picture below was taken towards the end of 1998 by Mark (our resident photographer), who also plays Gan Jan-Ru. It was taken just prior to a session, and includes some things which truly explain how weird we all are, and which need pointing out.
The first is the bottle of sacred black liquid that Korinne is holding. Yes…COKE! Our sessions would be very dry without it…never mind very sleepy. Although sometimes (being that we run sessions on a Friday night after a usually hectic week) you would not think so – eh Pete?
The second is the 3 stuffed bunnies that Felice, Korinne and I are holding. These are “The 3 Plifs”. Their story is described below. There is a 4th Plif in the works which was conceptualised by Sharon (who plays Tanlee – Plif’s best friend) who took one look at Hasbro’s “Buddies” Toy of Max Rebo, and said “I can do a Plif about that size”. Stay tuned.
The third is a piece of paper that Michael is holding between Tony and myself. The picture is not very clear, but this is actually “Cartoon Bob” (its a face drawn on a piece of paper, but a good representation never-the-less. Mike is a bit of a “fun-ster” and when I’m describing a scene, Carton Bob – our special effects man – jumps into action with some way out drawings (Mike’s drawings are very simple but make us all laugh).
“The Gang” behind the Chronicles.
From the left (James Martin, Mike Harvey, Ian “Hooly” Houlihan, Tony Hanrahan (Rear), Felice Houlihan (Front), Korinne Bailey (Rear), Sharon Rogerson (Front), Peter Pfeffer, and Mark Rogerson. “Cartoon Bob” also made an appearance hiding between myself and Tony along with the 3 Plifs.
During all of this campaigning, Tanlee managed to find a trainer long enough to begin her way along the Jedi path (after two Jedi Masers were killed in her presence). At that time, she picked up a new pet called Plif. Those who know the Star Wars Marvel story will recognise the character as Plif the Hoojib which I blatantly stole from that story. The funny thing was the effect this character had on the actual session. At the first session that Plif was to join the group, Sharon walked into the house with this strange, large, white bunny. It was huge. I was told by Sharon that she would feel better is Plif was a real, tangible character, so she had brought the bunny, from home, to make that representation. Something that cracked everyone up, and became part of the group.
It was something about this bunny that made Plif that more interesting – especially to Mike who felt that the bunny was always watching him – something about the eyes. This went on for a few sessions until one day Sharon forgot Plif. As a result, Felice brought out a brown bunny that I had given her one Easter. This was dubbed “Stunt Plif”, much to everyone’s amusement. Stunt Plif has made numerous appearances during sessions, and manages to get himself into some strange situations (eg. He always starts the session above the pool table’s overhead light).
The Original Plif was later replaced by a smaller bunny now dubbed the “All New Likeness Plif” – which has no real significance unless you collect the Hasbro Star Wars Toys. As I mentioned before, there is a 4th Plif in the works, but whether that one has the personality that the others have is yet to be seen. Below is a picture of the 3 Plifs, taken again by Mark.
Between scenes, the 3 Plifs take a break with a refreshing Coke.
Front left to right: (Original Plif, All New Likeness Plif, and Stunt Plif)