Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Star Wars Location Generator

Star Wars is a cinematic universe. For our purposes, that lends a lot of direction towards how to actually write a Star Wars adventure. The greater OSR mentality of information-heavy multi-keyed location exploration doesn't cut it for Star Wars. I love that, to be sure, and would happily spend my time refereeing a session ensuring that resource drain, decision fatigue, and overall survival horror mark the cornerstones of the experience, but that is just not how it works in a Galaxy Far Away

As I continue to run a campaign in an alt-history post-Return of the Jedi universe locally for my peers, it dawns on me that so often I search for Star Wars adventure seeds or creative fodder and all I can find are detailed, on-rails fan modules written for FFG's Edge of the Empire etc, which, of course, is a fun game, but is entirely in the vein of big damn hero modern RPG philosophy. What I hope to do here is, instead, offer some dynamic generative tools to create quick, impact-heavy locales for use in all of the major Star Wars environments as made lovingly famous across all manner of related media. Borrowing from the excellent concepts behind point-crawls, you'll have a five-"room" adventure site in minutes, allowing for a mixture of concrete and abstract elements from which you can riff a whole evening's session with little effort.

Help me help you, because at the very least, I'm helping myself.

Saby Menyhei - Artstation
All things considered, there are six major Star Wars biomes in which any adventure happens. Before you suggest fifteen other biomes (and I would accept them), consider that this little rubric cuts through the heart of established lore upon which we can get on with making our own places to visit. You have Dantooine or Naboo, Nar Shadaa or Dagobah, Hoth or Mustafar, the Death Star or the Harbinger, Scarif or Yavin, and Korriban and Tython. Sum those up and somewhere in the middle is any solid on-theme escapade. Let's get to it.

To create a Star Wars adventure location, roll 1d6 or choose what make sense:

1. Planet, pastoral
2. Planet, exotic
3. Planet, harsh
4. Starship
5. Space
6. Temple

Flesh out the location with 3d8 rolls on the related tables:

Planet, pastoral
1. Pissed off ranchers, frustrated that X faction is moving in and encroaching their land.
2. Aggressive wildlife herds such as kath hounds, kinrath, or shaaks.
3. d6 Mandalorian raiders operating under a warmongering kingpin.
4. An enclave of settlers who are frustrated by trade conditions.
5. d4 local wise men/Jedi/former Jedi/spiritual teachers interested in monastic life.
6. Malfunctioning droids who are rising up against local settlers/owners.
7. d12 offsite cartel agents and thugs making a safe haven from busier trade routes.
8. Imperial/Sith/etc hold-outs staking a defensive ground position.

Planet, exotic
1. Swirling eddies of Force-sensitive energy, promoting chaos in flora and fauna.
2. A time-lost bastion of military droid technology coming to life after millennia.
3. d8 crewmembers of a stranded merchant vessel trying to find fuel and directions.
4. Insurgents aimed to depose X faction from their hidden base.
5. d6 accomplished Dark Side acolytes hiding out from prying eyes.
6. A starport built on the remains of an ancient animal, offering goods and services.
7. Holdouts from the last galactic conflict trying to maintain solidarity.
8. A hermit escaping the bustle of the universe and hiding many secrets.

Planet, harsh
1. An illegal mining operation using the elements as cover for their exploitation.
2. The wreck of a derelict capital ship, lodged in the ground like a looming fortress.
3. A cavern containing the remains of multiple species, lorded over by a solitary beast.
4. d6 forgotten monoliths standing in the open; jamming comms and making your head hurt.
5. A secret, underground bunker operated by a rogue faction; multiple points of egress.
6. Slavers using the backwater as a logistic depot for their illicit trafficking.
7. An Imperial installation focused on black ops, cloning, or other low-profile plans.
8. d12 indigenous scouts hiding out during a search for resources to bring to their settlement.

1. A medbay, currently filled with d8 crew in critical condition and d4 medics.
2. A hangar with a gunship (on a small ship) or d10 interceptors (on a large ship).
3. The engine room, the air thrumming with static and controls on lock-down.
4. An operations center manned by d4 technicians and an imposing sentry droid.
5. Dimly lit corridors, a sparking conduit, the smell of machine oil, and faulty doors.
6. Brightly lit corridors, d6 personnel on patrol, and a mag cart laden with secured goods.
7. The bridge, peopled with an owner/pilot (on a small ship) or officers (on a large ship).
8. A cargo bay filled to the rafters with any mix of munitions, tech, and contraband.

1. A dense nebula barring hyperspace astrogation and jamming sensors; a known pirate route.
2. The aftermath of a large battle, with d8 ruined vessels and one derelict with a distress signal.
3. A secure manufacturing platform for Sienar Systems, currently building d4 capital ships.
4. d10 Rebel/Republic/etc ships in formation, visiting a refueling depot before heading to safety.
5. d10 Imperial/Sith/etc ships in formation, locking down a refueling depot with an iron fist.
6. An asteroid field owned by a mining guild. d6 pirates lurk nearby. A giant worm lives in a rock.
7. A huge space station in planetary orbit. Heavy tractor beams repel traditional attempts to dock.
8. An active warzone, with d4 capital or support ships and d20 fighter craft per side.

1. Intersecting geometric glyphs of triangles and hexagons carved into thrumming stone.
2. Corridors interrupted by sets of heavy stone doors. A silent assassin follows your progress.
3. An abandoned council chamber. There are dusty seats and a strongbox filled with two relics.
4. d6 acolytes of the Force, claiming to be neither Jedi nor Sith, but independent seekers.
5. A round ritual chamber of soaring pillars. Stairs climb the interior wall to a jeweled throne.
6. A pair of Force-sensitive predators such as tarentateks or tuk'ata, hungry for a fresh meal.
7. The forgotten library of an old sect, filled with sacred texts and at least one holocron.
8. The statue-shrine of a forgotten Force user. In her hands is a functional pair of lightsabers.

To whip up an adventure site, take the three rolls from your applicable table and assign one location to each, then make one roll each from two different tables and link them in some way. 

Nicolas Pierquin - Artstation

In the end, you have a five-location point of interest where only the meat matters. That is, you're not spending a lot of time travelling from one point to the next. Ultimately, the Millennium Falcon just jumps to the next point. The Rogue Squadron drops in and begins firing. The C-ROC cruiser lands on Nal Hutta and starts sewing chaos. Maul is released by Ahsoka and is now tearing hyperdrives out of their gantries. You don't need the survival horror in most Star Wars adventures. Shelve the resource drain and go right to the next point of action.

As an example, the party is going to Ilum. The mystical frozen world could be "planet, harsh" or "temple." Since I know the party is headed there to find lightsaber crystals and old Jedi lore, I'll treat it as "temple," rolling 7, 8, and 2. I establish that this temple site has the forgotten library of an old sect, filled with sacred texts and at least one holocron; the statue-shrine of a forgotten Force user. In her hands is a functional pair of lightsaber; and corridors interrupted by sets of heavy stone doors featuring a silent assassin who follows the party's progress. Already creative juices are flowing as I consider these results. Then I roll 2d6 and 2d8 to find the other extras from other tables and divine results, rolling 4 and 1, and then 7 and 1. This gives us  "Starship" and "Planet, pastoral" results. Specifically, the bridge, peopled with an owner/pilot (on a small ship) or officers (on a large ship) and pissed off ranchers, frustrated that X faction is moving in and encroaching their land. 

Now to string this together...


The caverns beneath Ilum's surface are riddled with mysteries, chief of which is what became of the resonant khyber crystals therein once the Empire fell and the Jedi emerged on the scene once again. You find that there is a library here, one overseen by a mostly-functional archival droid, Hnarka, but the deepest cache of sacred lore is bound by a Force-sensitive seal, beyond which a potent holocron is stored safely. However, in the foyer of the snow-buried library is a statue of Sul Jas, an infamous and ancient "Grey Jedi" whose extant lightsaber glows with the pale light of a dim golden beam, neither light nor dark side in its emission. 

Behind the party in their investigation is Armand Kro, a Chadrafan assassin hired by the remnants of Crimson Dawn, sent to eliminate potential Force-sensitive rivals to the cartel and conscript those who are freelancing at this point in time. Kro is a master killer, and nearly silent, but can be easily discovered by those who are attuned to the Force. Outside the complex is a landed Lambda Shuttle in use by Crimson Dawn, and heavily modified. Mag Deros, the captain of the ship (and overseer to Kro) is in the bridge, awaiting instructions but ready to react to anything untoward. 

Outside this are are a cadre of angry settlers, who despite the cold conditions, have made point-of-fact to set up shop in this equatorial band of Ilum and make the dadgummed best of it. Their leader, Randall Carnas, is short of speech and impatient at best. He's a powder keg ready to explode with the impact of multiple provincial families who are willing to defend themselves...


I roll a 6 on a d6, so I select Temple again, then roll 3d8 to get some results. I get a 3, a 5, and a 4. This provides me with "An abandoned council chamber; there are dusty seats and a strongbox filled with two relics"; "A round ritual chamber of soaring pillars; stairs climb the interior wall to a jeweled throne"; and "five acolytes of the Force, claiming to be neither Jedi nor Sith, but independent seekers." I then roll 2d6 to grab two new independent results from other tables, and end up with 3 and 2, so I roll the d8 for those tables and get "The wreck of a derelict capital ship, lodged in the ground like a looming fortress" and "A time-lost bastion of military droid technology coming to life after millennia."

That's a lot to chew on! So let's boil it down... the party heads to the ruined surface of Mandalore in search of an ancestral forge within which to smelt the beskar they have boosted from the Imperial Remnant. After gaining egress to the ramshackle underbelly of the glassed planet, they find an ancient Mandalorian shrine complex enclosed in stone and dust. After several short corridors, there is a council chamber with eight seats. Between the two furthest seats is a strongbox containing a heavily (and very powerfully) modded blaster pistol and a double-sided vibroblade of excellent make. The blade and pistol are both engraved in Mando'a with the phrase, "In Ordo's Name." Following from here is a throne room rising high into the darkness above. The spiral stairs show a mural of a humble Mandalorian rising in strength and prestige, eventually becoming a warlord followed by masses. By the top of the stairs and the throne platform, the figure is showcased as nearly angelic, with fire and radiance rippling around him. Again, "In Ordo's Name" is emblazoned on the throne. 

Following the emblazoned and rich-looking throne is a common area, one more run-down and plain than the elaborate chambers prior. There is a cookfire here, and whispered voices by three women and two men, all of whom are dressed in simple clothes. They explain that they are itinerants. They came here upon a large generation ship transport which crashed into the surface. All but seven of them perished, and two others went off in madness. The ship is mostly destroyed, but went far enough under the earth to deposit them here. They are Force Sensitive, but have no allegiance to established orders. They were younglings with a talent years ago, but never trained. They wander together. They are devoted to the Balance of the Force, calling themselves "Gray Jedi" if forced to take a name. They wish to restore this place as a new home (they have none) but they cannot progress until the guardian of the forge is expelled. The working (but inert) Mandalorian forge is guarded by an ancient Basilisk War Droid, an elephant-sized quadrupedal droid made of beskar and covered with guns. It has a deep, animalistic semi-sentience and will kill anything that approaches. 

The Techromancer - Artstation


  1. Dude! This is awesome! I almost had a Galaxy Far Away game going but my shift changed and we can't coordinate to get together to do it. I bet this would work great as a VTT game due to the lack of rules clunk!

  2. Great tables and two ready scenarios! Thank you.

  3. I just discovered your blog a few days ago, and I spent the weekend binge-reading almost the entire site. Just fantastic stuff! So many helpful tables that I'm straight-up stealing, both for adventure prep and for use on the fly while GMing.

    I read your 'state of the blog' post and I'm sorry you were treated so poorly. Your ideas are amazing and inspiring, and your generosity in making so much material freely available is greatly appreciated. Some people just looove to gatekeep, I guess. I'm glad to see that you're persevering. I know I'm just some rando commenter, but I think your stuff is awesome and I hope you keep making it, keep posting it, and most of all keep playing.

    - Matt Wedel