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Increased crew activity


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#1 Hampulina93

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 06:37 AM

Something my friends and I always thought wierd is that when a PC performs a ship action that is not associated with their assigned role they are supposedly instructing an NPC how to do it, like a micromanaging boss. I know the reason why this is, so the players are always directly involved and can use their skills, but it's odd to justify roleplaywise.

Que some discussion and we had some ideas that I'd like to get some input on from people with more play experience than us. Not all of these are to be implemented neccessarily but maybe some combination could be a representation of independent crew-officers while remaining playable.

  • The players can't perform an extended action not related to their ship role (see Into the Storm).
  • They also cannot perform any manouver or shooting action unless they are the Master Helmsman or Master of Ordnance.
  • If a player want to perform an action not related to their role they will have to order the assigned officer to do it as thus roll against crew rating instead.

The crew will could possibly still be limited in the number of actions they can before as described in the sidebar on p.214 of Rogue Trader.

I know that the players will be weakened by having to rely on crew rating for a lot of rolls but so do enemies and other NPCs so it might not make them too underpowered. Still, to balance this out a bit the players could get all ship role-bonuses, since logically all ships should have these staffed. Possibly not having some (or all) bonuses so that players have the option of acquiring skilled officers before they get the bonuses (maybe even a short side venture to say, convince a skilled but retired Guard officer to become Master of Arms who not only grants the bonus but also counts as Command +10 making the roll during boarding actions easier).

What are your thoughts on this?



#2 Kasatka

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 09:41 PM

Hampulina93 said:

Something my friends and I always thought wierd is that when a PC performs a ship action that is not associated with their assigned role they are supposedly instructing an NPC how to do it, like a micromanaging boss. I know the reason why this is, so the players are always directly involved and can use their skills, but it's odd to justify roleplaywise.

Que some discussion and we had some ideas that I'd like to get some input on from people with more play experience than us. Not all of these are to be implemented neccessarily but maybe some combination could be a representation of independent crew-officers while remaining playable.

  • The players can't perform an extended action not related to their ship role (see Into the Storm).
  • They also cannot perform any manouver or shooting action unless they are the Master Helmsman or Master of Ordnance.
  • If a player want to perform an action not related to their role they will have to order the assigned officer to do it as thus roll against crew rating instead.

The crew will could possibly still be limited in the number of actions they can before as described in the sidebar on p.214 of Rogue Trader.

I know that the players will be weakened by having to rely on crew rating for a lot of rolls but so do enemies and other NPCs so it might not make them too underpowered. Still, to balance this out a bit the players could get all ship role-bonuses, since logically all ships should have these staffed. Possibly not having some (or all) bonuses so that players have the option of acquiring skilled officers before they get the bonuses (maybe even a short side venture to say, convince a skilled but retired Guard officer to become Master of Arms who not only grants the bonus but also counts as Command +10 making the roll during boarding actions easier).

What are your thoughts on this?

While a ship SHOULD have all the posts filled, they will be filled with NPC crew members who have the same stats as everyone else on board - they are not the exceptional characters that the players are in control of so do not get any bonuses. As such it's down to the players to allocate ship roles based on which PC excels at a given task or which roles they feel vital to the operation of their ship.

My group and I have never felt the issue of PC vs NPC actions to warrant a modification to the rules - as it stands NPCs can only do so many actions per turn so it makes sense for the PCs to focus on actions that require rolls as they will score better than the crew (mostly better… i had a game once where no player had scrutiny and so trying to scan down an eldar vessel was nigh on impossible if the players rolled - they ended up relying on their 35 rating crew! )


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#3 HappyDaze

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 02:42 PM

Use the minion rules from BC to construct NPC officers in the filler slots. Few players may want to play a Steward, but it could make for a great minion!


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#4 Hampulina93

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 07:44 AM

@ Kasakta

Good point, I suspected I was overdoing it by making a ruleset, but hey, nothing ventured….

@HappyDaze

Wow, this is lot simpler than a new ruleset. My idea feels stupid in comparison. We'll probably use this.

Thanks for your input guys.



#5 Tullio

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 11:14 PM

I generally like the fluidity of the rules insofar as everyone can usually do at least something, but I did have an issue with how I'd end up with characters that have no naval experience in their background routinely operating the ship's augurs. We use Trade (Voidfarer) a lot more for Tests like these and it makes a lot more sense, frankly. Between the Master of the Guns and the Captain himself there's always at least one PC who can assist efforts to operate the Augurs.



#6 Hampulina93

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 12:19 AM

Yea, that can get a bit weird. We usually give them a ship role that doesn't necessarily require naval experience, like Master-at-Arms that really only requires some experience with command. Otherwise you can just say that they recieved some training when they joined up with the Rogue Trader, but making them take Trade (Voidfarer) is a neat solution. We've also discussed simmilarily changing what you roll against, like Intelligence for shooting sice you're calculating firing solutions.



#7 Alekzanter

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Posted 29 March 2013 - 08:06 PM

HappyDaze said:

 

Use the minion rules from BC to construct NPC officers in the filler slots. Few players may want to play a Steward, but it could make for a great minion!

 

 

Holy missing the trees for the forest, Batman!

This idea is outstanding!
I've been looking for an easy way to have my players recruit underlings and support staff in my Dark Heresy game, and the rules for Contacts in The Inquisitor's Handbook just didn't jive with my vision of the subject matter. I've significantly altered the XP required to attain each new Rank , knowing the PCs would become Skill/Talent bloated, though I intended this becuase I want the PCs to concentrate on particular specializations within their Careers while at the same time actively moving toward building their own Inquisitorial power base prior to "Ascension", and now they're pushing the boundaries of Rank 5 I was getting worried I'd have to flop this idea entirely onto the Contact rules. This idea opens the door that was sitting right in front of me the entire time.

HappyDaze, you are a God-Emperorsend!



#8 Errant Knight

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 02:54 PM

I only allow as many actions aboard a ship as the crew rating (per the sidebar you mentioned).  The characters have to decide just which characters gets to perform actions aboard ship each turn.

Each player has 3 characters in our game.  They only play one at a time.  One of them plays the same character all game, every game, and that's fine, but he has others to draw on.  The others switch back and forth.

The Rogue Trader is the Captain.  His word is law in battle.  Otherwise they vote on where the ship goes and what Endeavors they take part in.  I set it up so that the ship was financed by the Ad Mech, a Navigator House, and the Ecclesiarcy, as well as the Dynasty, each with equal votes on the Board.  The Seneschal breaks ties.  The player with the Navigator rarely plays the Navigator except during Board meetings and during Warp Passage.  He also has the Chief Astropath and plays that character for all Landing parties.

Now I'm off-topic.  Their ship started with a Competent crew, limiting them to 3 actions per ship combat round.  Usually that meant the pilot, the gunner, and augur, with the Rogue Trader modifying the die roll of one of those characters.  Their ship has torpedo tubes, so on certain turns, a different character (a second Voidmaster) would reload the tubes.  Often the Explorator switches off as well, the players usually finding it convenient to not let the augur take his turn.

Now their ship has a Crew Rating of 50.  They can take 5 actions per combat round.  I don't intend to stop at 60 either, though that is the limit of Elite, as per the sidebar.  Of course, crew casualties can always bring it down.






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