Very recently, an idea for an Alternate Universe/Alternate History came to me. Glancing through the threads, it does not appear that anyone has tried to run with this idea yet. The plot comes from one of the missions in TIE Fighter: Collector's Edition CD-ROM version. In one of the later missions, Emperor Palpatine is transferring from Coruscant to the SSD Executor, which is in a different system, via his C-3 Passenger Liner Excalibur. During said mission, forces loyal to treacherous Grand Admiral Zaarin interdict and attack the relatively defenseless Excalibur. In the game, the Excalibur is saved by Grand Admiral Thrawn's fleet and starfighters led by pilot Maarek Stele. Palpatine is eventually transferred to Executor, heads to Endor and the rest as they say is history. However, what would have happened if Thrawn had not arrived? Perhaps Zaarin had placed another Interdictor Cruiser in Thrawn's fleet's projected path, thus slowing the Chiss Grand Admiral long enough for Excalibur to be destroyed and the Emperor turned into space dust. The scenario would be very open in terms of what would happen next, especially if we assume that Zaarin would at that point probably join the Rebellion. 1) Who leads the Empire now? Vader is at the Second Death Star now, but would he really be able to lead the Empire? What about the Grand Vizier, what about the other Moffs/Grand Moffs? What about the Grand Admirals? Might Moff Jerjerrod, when he learns that Palpatine is dead, turn the Death Star's superlaser against the Executor, wiping out Vader (this would not be totally unthinkable: remember that although Palpatine was cruel, there was reason to his cruelty, Vader seems more wanton in his actions and it would definitely ease the pressure up on Jerjerrod to kill Vader)? If Vader lives, might Luke be able to turn him back to the Light? 2) What about the Rebellion? With Zaarin's fleet, they would be more powerful, but still an underdog? Although Palpatine (and many Vader) are dead, the Second Death Star is still around, as well as the mighty Imperial fleets. Of course, Zaarin, having been an R&D man, would definitely know all about the DS2 (in fact, he does, in the canon, plan to give certain information to the Rebel Alliance). Will the Rebel Alliance still carry out its attack on the Second Death Star? If say Thrawn or Jerjerrod were in charge of defending the DS2 without Palpatine's pride getting in the way, might they be able to stop the Rebellion from succeeding or at least minimize losses? 3) How would Luke respond to learning of Vader's death? Presumably this occurs after his final meeting with Yoda and he knows Leia is his sister? Would he try to restart the Jedi Order earlier since there is no long the overt Sith threat anymore? These are only a few of the situations that might arise this occurrence. There would be political intrigue, military action, the Force and much more. It would be unique (as best as I can tell, this scenario has not been tried before) and could involve many people. If GMed right, perhaps it might be the long sought-after replacement for IBoP. You would have perhaps an Empire facing the same problems that the Post-ROTJ Empire faced, but with the power and morale (remember, Palpatine was assassinated by a deranged traitor who took advantage of a situation, not systematically outsmarted by the Rebellion and militarily outsmarted) of the Pre-ROTJ Empire and they still have the Second Death Star. Although Palpatine (and possibly Vader) are dead, the Imperial fleet remains strong and Zaarin is no liberator like the Rebellion. Any comments? Any thoughts? Anyone willing to (help) set this up?