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What's the deal with star wars conflating bounty hunters with assasins?


Scattergun

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Umm, you remember when Darth Vader ordered all the Bounty Hunter's to go after the Millenium Falcon?

 

"You are to use any means at your disposal, but NO disintegration"

 

*******************

 

You sound like Mako. I want to ask her, "What is it you think we do around here?"

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Umm, you remember when Darth Vader ordered all the Bounty Hunter's to go after the Millenium Falcon?

 

"You are to use any means at your disposal, but NO disintegration"

 

*******************

 

You sound like Mako. I want to ask her, "What is it you think we do around here?"

That was definitely the start of it, but it continued in the novels and in this game. I remember a lot of that mindset from other players back at launch. I tried on several occasions to explain that a bounty hunter isn't the same thing as an assassin or a mercenary.

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WANTED: Dead or Alive.

 

 

Dead is generally listed first.

First is generally perceived as the preferred option.

 

If, when given the choice, a BH (real or fictional) decides to choose Dead, more than alive....at that point...what's the difference between a BH / Assassin.

 

The motives of the person / organization fronting the money/job?

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I do not see "bounty hunter" and "assassin" as mutually exclusive. I think which label is most appropriate depends more on the job than the employee/contractor completing said job.

 

So it makes sense they are conflated in the stories.

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None of that tracks though. As far as I know, bounty hunters are only empowered to arrest people, not to kill them(other than self defense). They're definitely NOT contract killers(assassins).

 

I think you're confusing the legal variety of bounty hunter you find in places like the US with the more generic term.

 

What they are authorized to do in the SW galaxy vs the modern US are very different.

 

Simply put, a BH is someone who hunts a bounty. Whether that bounty survives the experience is immaterial.

 

An assassin is more of a specific type of bounty hunter, one where there is no alive option.

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Bounty hunters do what the client says in the contract. The contract can specify the target be killed or brought in alive or leave both options on the table with differing pay depending on client's preference. A bounty hunter could be an assassin if they only do contracts that require or allow killing, but they don't have to be. They could choose to just hunt targets and bring them in alive. In the game, most, if not all, contracts allow both options simply for maximum player choice (a lot of times killing is the dark side option and bringing them in alive is the light side option).
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Fennec Shand, elite mercenary, master assassin. I still want that title in game lol

 

Assassins emphasize more on their covert nature of killing an enemy of their employer.

 

Bounty hunters go for the bounties that are often an open list. And as others have mentioned, they can bring the bounties in warm or cold, depending on the demand. In some cases, they got paid less or don't even get paid if they kill a bounty who is demanded to be brought back alive.

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Umm, you remember when Darth Vader ordered all the Bounty Hunter's to go after the Millenium Falcon?

 

"You are to use any means at your disposal, but NO disintegration"

 

*******************

 

You sound like Mako. I want to ask her, "What is it you think we do around here?"

 

Didn't say he couldn't kill him, just don't vaporise him, Vader wanted proof.

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I think you missed my point.

 

The Great Hunt was to KILL a target AND to KILL a fellow BH.

 

You didn't have to kill the other hunter, kill them or force them to concede. There is at least one occasion in which the PC can make the other hunter concede during the Great Hunt.

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What bounty hunters were in real life were privatized LAW ENFORCEMENT. Star Wars has pushed the idea that bounty hunting is nothing more than being a hitman for crime bosses and people who want to put a bounty on someone that they don't like so that they can be killed or hunted down outside the law. That wasn't what bounty hunting was AT ALL.

 

If anything, the smuggler and bounty hunter classes offer the opportunity to see stories that are more separated from their factions than the other classes, but the reality is that if they had to be part of a faction, they probably got them the other way around. Bounty hunters were deputized private extensions of law enforcement, and smugglers were outright criminals. One would typically be seen as a good guy and one as a bad guy, but it'd be in reverse to the way Star Wars has always treated it.

 

I'm talking about bounty hunters here as they appeared in the real life Old West, which is obviously where Lucas got the idea and the vibe that he was going for with them. But over time, they evolved more into the freelance contractors for the Space Godfather than anything that had to do with bounty hunting. I've always been a little confused and actually even kinda miffed at that development, and the fact that so few people realize that it happened; they just accept the idea of bounty hunters being associated with organized crime without blinking.

Edited by joshuadyal
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What bounty hunters were in real life were privatized LAW ENFORCEMENT. Star Wars has pushed the idea that bounty hunting is nothing more than being a hitman for crime bosses and people who want to put a bounty on someone that they don't like so that they can be killed or hunted down outside the law. That wasn't what bounty hunting was AT ALL.

 

If anything, the smuggler and bounty hunter classes offer the opportunity to see stories that are more separated from their factions than the other classes, but the reality is that if they had to be part of a faction, they probably got them the other way around. Bounty hunters were deputized private extensions of law enforcement, and smugglers were outright criminals. One would typically be seen as a good guy and one as a bad guy, but it'd be in reverse to the way Star Wars has always treated it.

 

I'm talking about bounty hunters here as they appeared in the real life Old West, which is obviously where Lucas got the idea and the vibe that he was going for with them. But over time, they evolved more into the freelance contractors for the Space Godfather than anything that had to do with bounty hunting. I've always been a little confused and actually even kinda miffed at that development, and the fact that so few people realize that it happened; they just accept the idea of bounty hunters being associated with organized crime without blinking.

 

There's a sort of bounty hunting you're forgetting. Standing bounties. Ones that don't cover a specific individual, but a general class.

 

Wolf, coyote, bear, mountain lion, are all typical historical examples.

 

So are: scalp of British soldier, scalp of French soldier, scalp of colonial militiaman, scalp of hostile Indian warrior.

 

So are scalp, ear or other reasonably portable dismembered body part of man, woman or child of any age, of pesky people living on top of the land you want to steal.

 

There's definitely a historical basis for a blurry spectrum that spans from law enforcement to market hunter to mercenary to murderer for hire. It hasn't really strayed outside of the bounds of what encompass a bounty hunter. Real life, especially over long spans of history, tends to be complicated, messy, and sometimes very ugly.

 

 

Now if you make a case that Lucas was going for a very John Wayne style Hollywood movie bounty hunter, then yeah, maybe you could argue it has strayed a bit. A bit of an odd contention given that Boba worked for Jabba in the original trilogy. Even Vader, though officially an authority figure in the Empire, wasn't exactly the righteous employer you'd expect for a John Wayne bounty hunter, unless your bounty hunter is going to switch sides by the end of the story. For that matter, thinking of Westerns in general, the "hired gun," is often an antagonistic figure doing the dirty work of some powerful and unethical character. So I'm not quite sure where you're getting the "more or less good guy," stereotype from for Bounty Hunters.

 

Sure, there's space for a bounty hunter that definitely is a good guy. There's just not much of an expectation that you can assume they're a good guy in pop culture stereotypes.

Edited by Ramalina
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"I thought we were Bounty Hunters, not Assassins."

 

"Part time."

 

Just looking at the Hunter game of Act 1 for Hunters, they're at the very least, part time assassins. They didn't always get a choice in the Hunter story line and some of those "I won't kill you" was less about light side and more about a moment of opportunity for the hunter (companion mission comes to mind).

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Make and the BH actually have a conversation about this. Mako asks about how thin the line is between what they do and what assassins do. It's a grey area.

 

The truth is that bounty hunters have pretty much always been assassins. The concept of "dead or alive" from actual history is that if you can bring them in, breathing,, you'll get paid. If you kill them and bring back the corpse, you'll still get paid. For many bounty hunters, it was always easier to shoot a target immediately upon identification and people always enjoy the path of least resistance.

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None of that tracks though. As far as I know, bounty hunters are only empowered to arrest people, not to kill them(other than self defense). They're definitely NOT contract killers(assassins).

 

In real life, yes.

 

But then, in real life they don't have full suits of armour and jet packs either.

 

This isn't real life.

 

Also, you're referring to current bounty hunting in real life.

 

During the wild west era, it was a whole different ballgame.

 

Oh and you do get the option to freeze several of your bounties in the game... so... you don't *have* to kill all of them.

Edited by OddballEasyEight
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Star Wars, especially more dangerous planets like those found in the Outer Rim/Unknown Region/Sith Space (outside of cities and bases controlled by the military) is more like a wild west type frontier justice system than a modern day bail bondsman agent situation.

 

In the core worlds, during peacetime, there's probably a very low tolerance for bounty hunters who repeatedly kill their targets, but people are going to care less and less about that with increasing social and political instabilities. The more law enforcement gets burdened with dealing with effects of the war, the more bounty hunters can get away with.

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What bounty hunters were in real life were privatized LAW ENFORCEMENT. Star Wars has pushed the idea that bounty hunting is nothing more than being a hitman for crime bosses and people who want to put a bounty on someone that they don't like so that they can be killed or hunted down outside the law. That wasn't what bounty hunting was AT ALL.

 

If anything, the smuggler and bounty hunter classes offer the opportunity to see stories that are more separated from their factions than the other classes, but the reality is that if they had to be part of a faction, they probably got them the other way around. Bounty hunters were deputized private extensions of law enforcement, and smugglers were outright criminals. One would typically be seen as a good guy and one as a bad guy, but it'd be in reverse to the way Star Wars has always treated it.

 

I'm talking about bounty hunters here as they appeared in the real life Old West, which is obviously where Lucas got the idea and the vibe that he was going for with them. But over time, they evolved more into the freelance contractors for the Space Godfather than anything that had to do with bounty hunting. I've always been a little confused and actually even kinda miffed at that development, and the fact that so few people realize that it happened; they just accept the idea of bounty hunters being associated with organized crime without blinking.

You and I are on the same page here.

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