Cameos from old retired characters can be an interesting addition to a campaign. If you've been playing long enough to have old characters from games gone by, have them make an appearance as an NPC in your current game. One player's first ever fighter might now be a blacksmith or a barkeep, retired from the questing life, and ready to interact with a new young generation of adventurers.
If you spring this on your players unexpectedly, it can make for an interesting moment of recognition, as you slowly make it clear who they're talking to.
Commentary by memnarch (who has not seen the movie)
WELL THEN. That is extremely not who I thought would be showing up here. Or who Jim's "new" character would be. Maybe this isn't actually the new character Jim had in mind, but with the various troubles in having the Resistance and First Order sides get equal time in the spotlight, the GM decided it would be better to have the old characters reappear as PCs now rather than NPCs later. Hah, or maybe it was Sally's idea to have the duo reintroduced! Teasing siblings is a tradition of sorts after all, and having a brother wear Chewbacca costume would definitely qualify in my book. Movie-wise, there's no reason not to have the old cast make a reappearance to play smaller parts to have some of the nostalgia for the older movies.
Han definitely looks like he's 20-30 years older than when we last saw him. Not quite as old has Harrison Ford does now, but it has been roughly 40 years since the Original Trilogy, so that makes sense. Chewbacca on the other hand, appears to be as he originally was, if not a little better. Either Wookiees age much slower, or this is where the chronometric fluctuation readings came from. Then again, I have no idea what an older Wookiee would look like. It could be that those readings were just flavor and Chewie's hair was permanently dyed in one of the usual adventures Han dragged him into.
Hiding to pretend it's a ghost ship would be a stupid plan. Hiding to pretend it's just a drifting wreck though; that's maybe a little better. I bet Chewbacca points out the two of them did just that 40(?) years ago, and Han finds Finn, BB-8, and Rey while trying to prove that no one's hiding. What an awkward family reunion this will be.
Commentary by Keybounce (who has not seen the movie)
Is that Harrison Ford and Chewbacca?!
OMG, it IS.
Ben and Jim are the two "killed-off" players. Hmm. Ben went from playing Lor San Tekka in the first session, to playing Hux in newer sessions. So he's not completely dead. And Jim is... making comments from the peanut gallery. Because, after all, no one found his body and he probably ejected, maybe having a solo session during the week while these guys get together on the weekends.
No, that has never happened to me. Nope. Nu-uh.
I love the callback to Episode IV. Kinda obvious.
Now, is Chewbacca holding a crossbow? Looks like it. Why a crossbow? I mean, never mind the real-world lethality. This is a D&D game in space, right? They do pathetic damage.
(Which makes me wonder: would this universe be pathway travels merging with e-tech damage? [credit Scott Adams for the original joke])
Rey: Get down! Don’t let them see you!
Finn: Then we can’t see them!
GM: After an apparent eternity, the door opens.
Finn: I drop the floor plate and hide!
GM: Unseen by Rey, Finn, and BB-8, two armed, lowlife scoundrels enter.
GM: Ben, Jim, you have the floor.
Chewbacca: The atmosphere of inoccupancy suggests dereliction.
Han: Whoa! Ghost ship!
Chewbacca: Or... the crew members are hiding.
Han: Who would hide and pretend it’s a ghost ship? That’s a stupid plan!