If you are looking for a Spoiler-free review, see my original trip report here: I'm no Hank Lonely but...my Galactic Starcruiser trip report
I won’t repeat all of the background info that was in my original trip report but DH and I attended the 3/3 voyage of the Galactic Starcruiser. I’ll focus this review on the storyline, including spoilers, that we experienced. But, this will not be all-inclusive - we are in a FB group for our voyage date and people are doing recaps of their trip. In reading some of them, it is like we weren’t even on the same voyage! They experience things and subparts of the story that we had no idea were going on. This was predominately because of the choices they made and, in a lot of cases, how much they interacted with the characters.
DH and I definitely got involved when it came to using the datapad and completing tasks that way. But we didn’t do a ton of interaction with the actors. Those who did, unlocked some pretty memorable experiences.
As one example: Raithe is Gaya’s (the singer) manager but he is a little bit of a shady character who definitely isn’t all he seems (as are most of the characters!). So, there was a group of passengers who befriended him and as a result, he gave them a secret code and they ended up doing a jewel heist during the story. Now, did this impact the story for the other passengers, no, not at all. We didn’t even know that was a thing but for those passengers that were involved, that was a uniquely personal experience that not everyone got. Another group actually invented a card game and taught it to Raithe and he bought them a round of drinks. So, and I can’t stress this enough, you get out of this what you put into it. I’m perfectly happy with our level of involvement because I am very introverted and the thought of befriending a random character is terrifying. Does DH feel the same, I think he wishes he would have done more interactions but I definitely held him back. Which is why he will likely do this again but I will sit it out!
Initial Story and Characters: we are passengers of the Halcyon which is celebrating its 275 years and the excursion to Batuu, the location of its first voyage. The Halcyon always seems to visit places where the Resistance pops up after they leave. This has put the Halcyon on the Radar of the First Order.
You first meet the majority of the characters during the Ship’s Muster and Captain’s reception on Day 1. You really just know high-level information about them but for most of them, there is more than meets the eye and this is part of what you discover as the story unfolds.
Captain Keevan: She has a history with the Halcyon and fondly recalls tales from the past (including tie-ins with General Organa). She is all about good and is a Resistance supporter but tries to balance her views to seem neutral, at least in the beginning.
Lenka Mok: She is the cruise director. Very aligned with Captain Keevan. Later in the story, on Day 2, it is clear her abilities exceed those of a regular cruise director
Lt. Croy: This was by far my favorite character. He plays his role beautifully and has such a dry wit, it is tempting to go dark side just to interact with him! He is the first order Lt who boards the Halcyon because he is suspicious of the way the pockets of the Resistance pop up after each Halcyon visit. He boards the ship under this guise, along with two stormtroopers. If you are going to play the dark side, get to know this man, it will be worth it, including getting a shout out by name in the Day 2 finale.
SK 620: this is the full-size droid that is Lenka’s right-hand droid. I love the fact that he roams around the ship and has a place to tap your magic band that makes him talk and light up. He becomes a part of one of the sub-stories and one of the missions I was involved in was helping to free him after he becomes bolted by the First Order and one of the Halcyon’s crew.
Sammie: Loved this character as well. He is introduced as a mechanic but it becomes clear that he is much more than the loveable, somewhat bumbling mechanic. If you are going full in on the interaction, he is also a character to get to know. He was wonderful with the kids on board.
Gaya: She is a famous singer who is something of a Diva who comes aboard to perform in the Crown of Corilia dining room on night 1. Her vocals are amazing. She is a great performer. There is more to her story as well - to be honest, we never followed this particular story line too closely so we just got bits and pieces.
Raithe Kole: He is Gaya’s manager but definitely fits the scoundrel persona. He is another one to get to know. It seems that the people who did had an amazing experience.
Ouannii: she is the Rodian musician. She was also outstanding during her performances with Gaya. She will mingle with the passengers and speaks in a foreign tongue but has such a personality, it’s fun to watch (in my case) her interaction with passengers.
Sandro: Admittedly, this is not anyone we interacted with or even saw a lot. But, he is an aspiring musician and there is a subplot involving him and Ouannii. One group of passengers helped him write a love song that was revealed on night 2 and they got a shout-out during the performance. If you are hanging out in the Atrium, you will likely see him.
The Saja: these are the lightsaber trainers. If you are following the storyline of the Force, these are the people to interact with. They do the lightsaber training and are involved in probably the coolest plot moment we experienced on Day 2 (more details on that below).
D3-09 This is the in-room droid. Definitely make sure you interact! The red light on the panel in your room will be on when you have a message from her. It is such a small touch but really fun. One night we had her read us a bedtime story and one night she sang us a lullaby.
Other characters that are part of the plot and you will see around during both Day 1 and Day 2 include Chewie, Rey and Kylo Ren. Chewie is on both Day 1 and Day 2 and does interact quite a bit with people and there are missions to help “hide” Chewie from the stormtroopers and this involves the passengers using cloaks or their bodies to help Chewie get from one part of the ship to the other. Rey interacts somewhat but on Day 2 as the story continues to unfold. Kylo is only in the finale, not roaming the ship like the others.
I would definitely familiarize yourself with the characters and backstory of the ship if you plan to fully participate or if you haven’t read the comics that try to weave these stories into the Star Wars universe. I found this to be a good source for a far more detailed summary than what I provided above: Dispatches from the Halcyon: Meet the Characters Aboard Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser | StarWars.com
Datapad Info: For our voyage, we were given datapads (aka iPhone mini) to use throughout the voyage. I don’t know if this will be long-term or only until the bugs are worked out with the current software. The datapad is essential for the entire voyage as that is where your itinerary is updated (Listed under Events), how you will communicate with the characters (Comms), tools you will use for the various tasks around the ship and in Batuu (Tools), a map of the ship (you can look at each deck level), and your Profile. The Profile is the only thing that will carry over to the regular Play app when your voyage is complete. So, if you want to save a copy of your itinerary or comms, make sure to take screens shots of it before you turn the phone back in. During our voyage, DH checked is play app on his own phone and did see the same thing we saw on the datapad they gave us but I could not even long into the play app on my personal phone.
Our cabin was all the way at the end of the hall on deck 7
When we boarded the ship, I knew from watching some of the media previews that there were terminals throughout the ship (primarily in the Atrium) that you could tap your magic band and that would start you down some of the stories. This was our itinerary when we first boarded.
So, shortly after we boarded, I tapped one and the game was on! In this case, I scanned my band and just started pushing buttons to try to gain access to the various parts of the ship - Cargo Hold, Engineering, the Brig…etc. DH did the same. From the outset, I wanted to play both sides and DH was 100% Resistance. I wanted to see what would happen if we took slightly different paths.
Immediately, we both received a message from Raithe on the comms channel on our datapad.
At this point, you look at the console and there is a little puzzle or code you have to do to get access. Once we did that successfully, we got this message from Raithe
This is the first time where DH and I had different assignments. Both were in the Engineering room but he had to look at the schematics and I had to prime the escape pod thrusters. We found our stations and pushed the buttons we needed to. Once we had, we got another message from Raithe
By the time we had checked out our room, explored the ship, gone to the gift shop for our purchases, ate lunch and completed this task, it was time for the Ship’s Muster This was our first opportunity to get introduced to the main characters (the Captian, Lenka, SK-620, Sammie, Ouannii). It is at this time, the holo column in the Atrium shows an image of a Tie Echelon (make sure you are always looking at these columns, they will change the visuals based on what is happening in the story).
At this point, Lt Croy boards with the stormtroopers and the passengers erupt with both cheers and boos
Lt Croy explains his concern that the Halcyon’s ports of call coincide with pop-ups of Reisistance forces so he is suspicious of the Halcyon and it’s passengers. He announces that he will be present for the whole voyage to monitor things. Lt Croy also needs someone to service his ship and calls on Sammie to help him. Raithe also makes his appearance for the first time as well. And then it is time to go into Hyperspace and a family is selected to make the jump to light speed from the bridge.
After the muster, all of the characters are out and mingling with passengers so I sought out Raithe and gave him the code message. I don’t remember why but DH waited until later to give his message to Raithe.
We had to go to Bridge Training at 4:30, right after Muster. This is another cool event that changes depending on when you do it. In the middle of Bridge Training, Lenka comes in and informs us that Gaya has not yet made it to the ship. So Lenka contacts Gaya and we have to share our enthusiasm for her performance to feed into her diva persona. Gaya assures us she will be there, once we pick her up. So, we had to use what we had learned during our bridge training to complete our “mission” was to pick up Gaya at her Ice Spa.
She also has a message for Raithe that she wants us to communicate: she packed 2 stars to guide us to 3 bright moons and a rising sun. She also tells us she doesn’t want us to miss one of her biggest hits - Coaxium. So, even though we are just passengers, we did well with our training so Lenka decides we should go get Gaya. So we make the jump to hyperspace (if you are in your cabin when these things happen in bridge training, what you see out your window changes accordingly).
Of course, we enter an asteroid field that requires us to use our training to navigate through it and shoot at the asteroids to break them up.
We were on the weapons station so we had to blast the asteroids
Finally, we are approaching Gaya’s Ice Spa and make contact with her again to let her know we are here. She has a specific request that only Raithe handle her luggage.
Then her yacht appears and the loaders have to attach to it to bring it into the bay.
Raithe then comes in and we deliver the message she gave us. This is also a time for some improv and interaction with the characters. Again, the kids in the room ate that up and delivered some really funny moments. This is where the actors shine - their improv ability was amazing. Maybe more so to me because improv is not something I am good at so it is always fun to watch people who are!
We left bridge training and went into the Atrium to find Lenka introducing Gaya to everyone now that she was onboard. The Captain then comes out and introduces Gaya to Lt Croy.
Lt Croy mingles with the crowd
SK-620 is out and about as well
By 5:30, I had already “made contact” with a few of the characters
DH had the same at this point, with the exception of Lt Croy - DH and I had different responses and communication with Lt Croy. This also meant he didn’t have any tasks for the First Order when we did our Batuu excursion, but I did.
This is DH’s communication with Lt Croy, clearing letting him know he was not going to be of assistance to him:
The comms serve as two purposes, 1) to get you to engage with the characters and decide which “side” you are on but also 2) to help advance the plot. Below is a bit of a spoiler that isn’t revealed until further into the evening. But, we took a video of all of our conversations so I am just taking screen shots to show the whole dialogue - hard to do it in order as the events happened.
Compare that to my interactions with Lt Croy - I received the same first introduction message from him but I answered differently than DH, which prompted a whole different set of things:
I had to sneak to one of the consoles to complete the mission and look for the ports of call
Again, DH and I got the same message about Lt Cory paying attention to Gaya but I answered differently than DH
I then got the same message as DH about Sammie and answered the same way DH did. I couldn’t have gone full dark side but I knew there were some things I wanted to experience that only came with the resistance or the force paths.
We had the early seating at dinner which is 5:30. Dinner on Day 1 for us was at the Captain’s Table. Here is a tip - Day 1 the Captain joins the table (briefly) but on Day 2, the Captain’s Table is Lt Croy because the First Order has taken over the ship. So, if you are supporting the dark side and doing the Captain’s table, do it on Night 2! You don’t actually eat with them, they appear at the beginning and have some conversation with everyone at the table and then they are called away. My other trip report covers all of the details of dinner and the food so I won’t go into that here.
Dinner on Day 1 includes a performance by Gaya and Ouannii. Lt Croy mingles as well to keep an eye on things.
Gaya and Lt Cory have this flirty vibe going on, very funny to see how they played off of each other
Be sure to look at your bill (if you ordered alcoholic beverages because there is a slip of paper left behind
For those who are outgoing or with different parties, ask people if they got a message because there are three of them and they all fit together. We did not do this but read about it on the FB group we are in and one party assembled the whole message.
Here are the other pieces (this is courtesy of the posting on our FB group, not my picture)
The next plot of the story (that we were aware of) is that Chewie was smuggled on board and we needed to keep him hidden from the First Order. We ran into him in the Sublight lounge and then they enlisted passengers to help hide him as he walked from the sublight lounge to either the engineering room or the cargo hold - not sure because there were so many people around that we opted not to follow the crowd. So while Bingo is going on, you see this crowd walking, “hiding” Chewie. It was cute
Lightsaber Training was at 8:30 and this was our first official introduction to two of the Saja’s.
During the Lightsaber Training, you hear the voice of Yoda as he tells you about the Force.
You can read more about the lightsaber training in my spoiler free trip report.
After Lightsaber Training was Sabacc lessons. Ouannii made an appearance to help out with playing! SK-620 was there and Gaya made an appearance as well. As we exited the sublight lounge to go to the Atrium for the Cruise Director’s Evening toast, we saw Stormtroopers “capturing” SK-620.
This leads to the finale of Day 1, Lt Croy and the Stormtroopers put a restaining bolt on SK-620, the enlist the help of Sammie to do this. The crowd reacts with boos and begging Sammie not to do it. They plan to extract data from SK-620 to learn about resistance activity.
At some point, Sammie turned Chewie over to the first order but we totally missed that so not sure how that unfolded. But, we did receive that notice in all of our comms.
When we got back to our room, we had this letter waiting for us
By the end of Day 1, based on our interactions and tasks completed on the datapad, this is how my day looked for Day 2 and the missions I had to complete on Batuu:
This is what our Day 2 afternoon itinerary looked like at the end of Day 1. This is important because it would change, based on what we did on our Batuu excursion
One Note: We didn’t do the ship orientation that was on our itinerary because we had gotten our first mission so early - I wish we would have done this differently! My Advice: Do the ship orientation first- in hearing from other passengers, you do learn things on the orientation that could come in handy later. Then you can play on the consoles to get your first mission.
So after nearly 10 hours of game-play, we were exhausted but knew we had an early morning for our Batuu excursion. I’m not going to post all of our interactions with all of the characters because it is painstaking to go through our videos and screenshot the conversations but hopefully, the interaction with Lt Croy from both me and DH shows how fluid things are based on what you do.
Coming soon, Day 2!