- "You have meddled in my affairs for the last time, heroes. Be so kind as to die."
- ―Darth Sidious, to the Heroes of Cularin, in a recording placed in the computer of the abandoned Separatist base
Destruction was a mission that took place during the Clone Wars.
- "May I proceed, my Master?"
"Yes. Go there and kill them. Kill them all."
- ―Garth Ezzar, receiving permission from Darth Sidious to launch an attack on the Almas Academy
In circa 19 BBY, during the Clone Wars, elements the Believers Sith cult influenced the Wyrd, a group of Tarasin Force witches, into attempting turn the ch'hala trees of the planet Cularin to the dark side of the Force. The endeavor was thwarted by the Jedi Master Lanius Qel-Bertuk, and the Tarasin tribal leader Mother Dariana informed the Cularin Armed Forces, a Cularin-based Republic military force, of the Believers' involvement in the plot. Due the the Believers' alliance with the Confederacy of Independent Systems, a Separatist government that the Republic was fighting, General Osten Dal'Nay of the Cularin Armed Forces decided to investigate Dariana's claim, and he began planning a mission to recover intelligence from an abandoned Separatist base on a planetoid in a featureless system, which the Believers were thought to have moved into the base. Republic advance scouts were sent to reconnoiter the system, and they reported that there was low enemy activity in the vicinity of the base.
The Sith Lord Darth Sidious learned of the planned mission, and began scheming to use the operation for his own purposes. The Cularin Armed Forces had limited numbers of ships and intended to assign to the mission the Vigilance, a Republic Navy light cruiser that was stationed in orbit of the planet Almas in the Cularin system, leaving Almas to be guarded only by a single Thaereian customs ship. While the planet was undefended, Sidious schemed to send his Dark Jedi minion Garth Ezzar to attack the world and strike against the Almas Academy, a Jedi academy located on the planet. In addition, the Dark Lord plotted to use the mission to keep the Heroes of Cularin—a group of freelance agents who operated on Cularin—away from Almas while Ezzar launched his attack, to keep them safe. He wanted to turn the agents to the dark side and cause them to become servants of the New Order that he planned to bring to the galaxy, and he had the abandoned base turned into a trap, to ensnare them. Sidious was confident that the agents would survive the ordeal, and that any that died would not be worthy of his recruitment effort.
Dal'Nay eventually assembled a small task force under the command of the officer Captain Suubrin, consisting of the Vigilance, two support vessels, some starfighters, a number of clone marines and some engineers. In order to conceal the fact that the mission objective was to gain intelligence, the majority of the troops participating in the mission were led to believe that their aim was simply to attack and destroy the Separatist base; to support this falsehood, the mission was code-named Destruction, and the task force was named Task Group Destruction. Palpatine covertly arranged for a high-ranking military official on the planet Coruscant to request that the Heroes of Cularin also be involved in the mission, and the CAF acquiesced. The agents received a private briefing with Dal'Nay and General Xirossk, another Cularin Armed Forces leader, who designated the agents to form part of a specialist team that was to be sent into the depths of the base, to record any data that could be considered of use to the Republic.
With the stage set for an attack on Almas, Sidious gave Ezzar permission to travel to the world and attack the Jedi academy. En route, Ezzar was trailed by the Jedi Master Ki-Adi-Mundi, until the Cerean experienced a premonition of Almas burning and broke of his pursuit of the Dark Jedi to travel to the Cularin system. However, Ezzar caught up with his former pursuant and attacked the Jedi Master in the system in which the abandoned base was located, inflicting injuries onto the Cerean.
- "Scans have indicated minimal power: no life forms, and there doesn't seem to be much in the way of powered-up droids. The base is deserted."
- ―Captain Suubrin, on the abandoned Separatist base
The task group left the Cularin system and entered hyperspace. They dropped out near the abandoned system, and Garth Ezzar sighted the flotilla, and fled the system in his starship. The Republic force soon sighted a small group of Believer-operated Z-95 Headhunters and some droid starfighters of a model that was commonly used by the Separatists, and number of Republic starfighters were sent to engage them. After some brief fighting, the Separatist and Believer ships were destroyed, and the task force moved in towards the abandoned base. A scan of the facility indicated that there were no life forms inside it and that only a few powered-up droids were present within the outpost, leading Suubrin to believe that the installation was deserted. At Suubrin's direction, a team consisting of the Heroes of Cularin, four engineers and twelve clone marines was sent down to the base. The engineers and six of the marines headed off to power up the outpost, while the freelance agents and the rest of the marines headed to the facility's command center, to procure any accessible data.
The Vigilance detected Mundi's starfighter, and the task group moved to intercept the Jedi's craft, leaving one support ship in orbit of the base in case the landing party needed to be withdrawn. Mundi boarded the cruiser, and was admitted to its medical bay. The Heroes of Cularin continued to make their way through the base and passed several inert battle droids, which suddenly re-activated and attacked them. The agents defeated the droids and entered the command center, and once engineers in the other team had restored power to the base, the agents attempted to access the facility's main computer. However, after they attempted to interface with the computer, the doors to the command center sealed themselves shut and a jamming field activated, preventing the agents from being able to contact the engineers. A recording made by Sidious began resonating from some speakers in the control room, and the voice began a countdown. At the end of the countdown, the recording explained that the base was a trap to keep the agents safe and that doors were set to reopen after three hours had passed. The agents eventually escaped from the command center and were taken to the Vigilance, which had returned to the orbit of the planetoid.
- "Now, it is imperative that I return to Coruscant. But you—you must return to the Cularin system, to Almas. Please. Hurry."
- ―Jedi Master Ki-Adi-Mundi, to the Heroes of Cularin
Aboard the Vigilance, the Heroes of Cularin met Suubrin in his conference room and reported to him on what had occurred while they were in the base. The agents then conversed with Ki-Adi-Mundi, who planned to return to Coruscant and report to the Jedi Council on Ezzar. Due to his premonitions, the Cerean urged the agents to return to Almas, and they immediately departed and traveled to the Cularin system. They arrived on Almas amidst the attack that Ezzar had led against the Almas Academy, and were too late to save the institution. Ezzar's forces blasted the academy into ruins and almost all of the resident Jedi were killed.
Behind the scenes
The mission Destruction was created by Ronald A. Heintz and appeared in the role-playing supplement Destruction, a module that formed part of the Heart of Evil trilogy of the Living Force campaign. The actions of the players, who role-play as the Heroes of Cularin, can affect the outcomes of events. When traveling to the abandoned base, the player characters can choose to travel to the deserted system aboard the Vigilance, in one of the support vessels, in their own starship, in an assigned Wayfarer-class medium transport, or in Cularin Armed Forces fighters, if the player characters are Jedi. The assigned fighters can be Z-95 Headhunters, and up to two of them can be G61 Delta Wings. The article states that no Jedi starfighters are available for use by the players, but despite this, role-playing statistics for a Delta-7 Aethersprite-class light interceptor are provided in an appendix to the article, with statistics for the other potential assigned fighters. The players can also request that the Republic supply them with equipment that could be reasonably deemed to be required for the assignment, such as medpacs, glow rods and ascension guns, and players that are formal members of the CAF can request additional weaponry.
During the combat with the Separatist fighters, the player characters can either fly starfighters, operate some of the Vigilance's bridge functions, or crew a starship of their own, if they brought one with them. After the player characters land in the base, they are assigned to travel with six clone marines, and the players don't want the clones to escort them, then they can ask the troopers to go with the team of marines and engineers that was sent to power up the base. This results in an argument ensuing between the marines and the players, and it is possible for the marines to eventually be ordered to go with the other group.
When the player characters are attacked by the reactivated battle droids, the model of the droids is dependent on the role-playing tier of the players, with lower tier players facing B1-Series battle droids, medium tier players facing B2 super battle droids and higher tier players facing Droidekas. The number of the droids that attack is determined by the number of player characters and is equal to the number of player characters multiplied by two and added to six. During the encounter, any Jedi player characters are individually targeted by at least two droids. The players also have the option of contacting the marines accompanying the engineers, to request assistance with combating the droids.
When the Heroes of Cularin become trapped in the command center, it is possible for the player characters to attempt to slice into the base's main computer, to try and stop Sidious' countdown, or to try and open the doors to the command center. If their endeavor to open the doors is successful, then, then they can make their way to the base's main doors and have to repeat the process that they used to get the first set of doors open. However, if the players fail at two attempts to open either set of doors, then that door will become jammed, and can not be opened for at least an hour. If the players fail at trying to stop the countdown, or do not try to stop it, then when it ends, nothing harmful happens to them, and a holographic recording of Sidious appears. If the players stop the countdown then afterward, a slicer discovers the recording and the players activate it. Alternately, if the player characters leave the base before the countdown ends, the a Republic engineer's sensors detect the activation of a holoprojector when the recording plays, and it is possible for the player characters to reenter the base, to investigate the device's power up. After about 30 to 40 minutes have passed, if the players have still not freed themselves from the command center, then they are released by the engineers in the other team that landed in the base, or by another team that is sent down from the Vigilance.
The is a discrepancy in Destruction regarding the nature of the starfighters that the Republic task group attacks after it arrives in the deserted star system. The adventure's narrative section describes the fighters as droid fighters, and states that role-playing statistics for the vessels are included in one scenario's appendixes, yet the relevant appendix only includes statistics for Believer-operated Z-95 Headhunters, not for droid fighters. This article therefore assumes that the starfighter force was made up of both droid starfighters and Z-95 Headhunters.
Notes and references
- A Plague of Darkness
- A Hero Seeks Not Vengeance
- Destruction is set shortly before A Hero Seeks Not Vengeance, a Living Force adventure that occurs concurrently with the Battle of Coruscant. As the battle is dated to 19 BBY by The New Essential Chronology, the events of Destruction can be placed in circa 19 BBY.
- The Clone Wars Campaign Guide