It isn't my first run. I played through each upon release. The first and second just happened to come out so long ago that I have vague recollections of them. I chose to aim for 108 for all the data import goodies from 1-3.
Reading that sure jogged my memory though...
So come on Aeolus.... tell me there is more major-plottage worth seeing aside from what I have just effectively spoiled...
And this is why you don't go playing for all 108 stars on your first run.
For what its worth, my best advice is to remember what happens when you do collect all 108 SoDs in other Suikoden games.
I see where you are going with that.... I think... Say no more.
EDIT: Most importantly tell me I didn't ruin christmas!!!
Wait. I think I remember what you're talking about now. As long as you didn't complete their quest, Futch and Humphrey will still be waiting for you at the foot of the mountain (this is of course, the reason why I told you to not worry about collecting the 108 SoD until after you hit N.Window). Although, if you did complete their quest before getting your headquarters then that's beyond what I did in my two runs of the game.
As for major plottage, oh hell yeah. This is a numbered Suikoden game after all, even with 108 recruitable characters there's still plenty of death and destruction to go around. The one big thing that you can change (aside from the description you gave) depends on whether you run from Tinto or not, and if you decide to, then how far you run to.
And if you're really worried about Christmas, don't be. If Fox News' War on Christmas can't ruin the season, I highly doubt you'll be able to do anything to it on your own (and if something does happen, just remember: There's always X-mas).