View Full Version : Novels that inspire Star Wars RPG Ideas

21 March 2002, 12:43 PM
What novels have you read that could inspire, or have inspired, a Star Wars RPG Adventure or Campaign?
A great novel series I am currently involved in reading, which is terrific Space Opera, is Simon R. Green's "Deathstalker" series. Great characters, situations and drama. A series that could easily inspire Star Wars, espeically if you use the old D6 Tapani Sector material as a setting basis (or create your own). Expand into Star Wars' future and a female Emperor of a similar yet different Empire than Palpatine's (as in the series) would also work.

21 March 2002, 01:38 PM
depends on what type I'm gouing for...

I tend to read a lot of fantasy books for some elements
star wars books for greneral info. and for my daily dose of political itnregie I read Btech

Reverend Strone
21 March 2002, 01:43 PM
My campaign is set in the wilds of Tatooine- so westerns are a huge influence, and translate across so well. The whole gunslinging, seat-of-your-pants mentality suits the high adventure of Star Wars perfectly. What's more, there's a near limitless supply of western novels, short stories and movies to fire the imagination.

I'm sure Lucas was making analogies to the old west when he designed the Tatooine setting. That's why it works so well.

21 March 2002, 01:54 PM
I have lot of Perry Rodhan adventure, this is a great source of idea. with more than 200 novel you will find idea.....

some Comic also give me idea.

The Admiral
21 March 2002, 02:23 PM
Willaim Gibson inspires me a lot, not particuylarly for main campaigns, but for running the seedy side of life down in the slums, he can't IMHO, be beaten.

Herbert is great for Force inspiration, he's got a real grip on the total massiveness of a galaxy, which I think is important to using the Force,,,

Terras Jadeonar & Raven
21 March 2002, 07:10 PM
Ben Bova: Venus
The plot in venus is a rich older but well juvinated father to "reward" any team daring enough to go down to the the planet's surface to retrive his oldest son's remains & crashed ship ... Task not very simple to due extreme planatary conditions ...could work in one of many ways for an adventure and daring spacer crews

Corporations struggle to claim resources and ferry the mined goods via light transport. one of the company ceo's leads a privateering mission to disable & steal the other corporations goods... Hmm, in an SW setting, perhaps a rogue or merc team is hired to do a similar thing.

Kim Stanely Robinson: Antarctica
Several corporations have established "resource mining" stations in the south pole. Sabatoges start happening and a person gets sent in to solve it ... A SW dereritive is use Hoth like planet which is rich in resources for mining... a corporation hires a team of players to investigate for them the cause of their malfunctions and sabotages , posibly from rival corporations... (hmm, perhaps the stations are fullt droid automated??? just tosing in an idea or two!)

Jack McDivit: Deepsix
A sceince team is sent to survey some last minute data on a planet in which is about to be doomed by a moon sized asteroid. The ship gets sabotaged or malfunctions stranding the crew

Anyways, thats a few in my collection that come to mind instantly. They're all really good reads btw if those types of sci-fi interest you.

21 March 2002, 08:28 PM
I recently ran an adventure based on Splinter in the Mind's Eye by Alan Dean Foster. I have taken much inspiriation from Tolkien's work as well. I take a lot from movies as well.

21 March 2002, 09:38 PM
I've found that Casablanca is fantastic for inspiration if your adventure is set in Mos Eisley. Face it - M.E. is Casablanca... below is flavor-text from my first session describing the place, written after watching that movie:

“Mos Eisley spaceport: home to the indigent masses, hope of those seeking escape from Tatooine, lair of those that prey on the hapless. Ships fill the air - arriving vessels are watched by greedy eyes, while departing ones are eyed with a whistful longing. The air is heavy with the scent of fuels and lubricants, hot sand and desparation. Here, everyone has a get-rich-quick scheme, a nefarious plot, or a blaster-bolt with their name on it – some have all three. Jabba’s townhouse sits here, a temple to broken promises and shattered dreams. In the main square lies the wreck of the Dowager Queen. The once-proud ship which carried the original colonists to this world now lies skeletal in the unforgiving heat, stripped of everything valuable or of use – a metaphor for the planet itself and a warning to misguided new arrivals seeking a better life. It is here that you find yourselves, blown like sand by the winds of circumstance…”

Other good movies would be the "Man with no name" series with Clint Eastwood - Fistful of Dollars, For a Few Dollars More, and The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.

Ash DuQuennes
21 March 2002, 10:46 PM
David Drake's Hammer's Slammers series for the gritty realism of combat. I've borrowed somewhat from S.M. Stirling's Draka series as well for my Imperials ("Submit and live; refuse and die. Your choice, serf. Decide!")

Ghost In The Holocron
22 March 2002, 08:14 AM
So many great suggestions already.

One thing I'd like to add though is the Horror genre: Saul, King, Masterton, Barker, Straub, and so on.

While these authors write stories that are nowhere near "space opera", I've found buckets of inspiration in them for running the Dark Side -- great for freaking the players out and getting the psychological tension nice and tightly strung.

22 March 2002, 08:27 AM
I'd like to recomment the Last Legion series by Chris Bunch. They're light, pulp fiction, and on the militaristic side of things, but they feature underdog soldiers fighting against a numerically superior force, using limited resources, and getting by mostly on their wits -- very similar themes to Star Wars in a lot of ways.

The heroes also undertake a lot of different missions during the series, some of which you may find inspirational.

You can buy a <A HREF="http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0451456866/qid=1016817966/sr=8-3/ref=sr_8_3_3/002-1216774-1248006">used copy off Amazon</A> for a buck fifty, incidentally...<P>

22 March 2002, 10:26 AM
I use some stuff from Clive Cussler's novels in my campaign. His plot twists are excellent and more than one of my bad guys has been based on characters from his novels. For those of you who don't know who cussler is, his books are about a kind of american james bond. Totally a good read, even if not star wars related... Also I pull ideas from some of my favorite movies (Aliens and Die Hard). I use the star wars novels for names and places.

22 March 2002, 01:28 PM
I use a lot of mystery and politicl intrigue in my adventures so novels that inspire me are:

James Bond Novels
Inspector Morse series
PD James
William Gibson
James Elroy

I also pull plot hooks and adventure ideas out of real life politics and historical accounts of Imperialism in the 19th century.

As far as the Force goes I get a lot of ideas from fantasy novels, and from buddhist mythology.

Reverend Strone
22 March 2002, 04:05 PM
Hey Bombaatu , sounds like we should compare notes man. You're thinking like I do.

Mathis Kharr
24 March 2002, 05:54 PM
I liked babalon five novel.. perosnaly .. I have used some converted to a starwars type came (no actually b5 stuff ) to make a space station and revolve several adventures around it.

25 March 2002, 09:48 PM
For Jedi, I borrow a lot of ideas from samurai novels. Musashi would have been a formidable Jedi.

Being a history buff, Ive taken a lot of tactics and concepts for large scale battles directly from history books. Mostly histories of the Roman Empire and other western civilizations.

You can't go wrong with BattleTech books for the political side of things.

If you want inspiration for multiple double-crosses and hard-boiled detective work, I strongly suggest you track down a copy of "The Jehovah Contract", by Victor Koman. Its one of my favorite books.

I find that you can draw ideas from anything you read. Just find what you like and pull out what you want.

Talonne Hauk
25 March 2002, 10:12 PM
I think one of the best things about Star Wars is that it's a collage of so many different ideas to begin with. So with a good enough imagination, any novel can give you some ideas for roleplaying. But here's a small list of novels that have inspired me to some degree;
Deathworld Trilogy by Harry Harrison. It's a great source for devious attacks from the GM via flora and fauna.
Venus, Inc. by ? (I can't remember.) A must read if you plan on adventuring in the Corporate Sector.
Dune, Dune: House Atreides, Dune: House Harkonnen. It's been mentioned before how many similarities exist between Star Wars and Dune. The latter two books have tremendous amount of political intrigue. On a downside, they're also co-authored by Kevin J. Anderson.
Although they're not novels per se, a good cultural Anthropology/Sociology textbook will help you develop an alien society from the ground up.
There are more, but I'll save them for a later post. My brain hurts right now.