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Force weapon requisition for low-ranking librarian


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#1 musungu

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Posted 27 January 2014 - 04:46 AM

Help me out here a bit, please. A Librarian recently joined my campaign at Rank 1. While Core Rulebook p. 28 (Starting Equipment) lists force weapon as Deathwatch Librarian Standard Issue, the Armoury chapter, p. 154 (Table 5-8, Meele Weapons) pegs Force weapons requisition to the Respected renown rank. Does the Librarian get his own force sword at the beginning? He could of course bring one from his Chapter, but this would essentially give him a Signature Wargear for free, and before he meets the requirements. Or does he have to earn the renown to get one, and make do with basic stuff until a few sessions into the game?

 

I went with denying the sword for the first session, based on the simple logic that in the future it will be easier to give out a toy than take it away, but fluff heavily implies force weapons are something of a must for Librarians, and the player is confused, not to mention myself. So what do you allow for beginner Librarians in your own campaigns?


Edited by musungu, 27 January 2014 - 04:47 AM.


#2 bogi_khaosa

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Posted 27 January 2014 - 09:48 AM

He gsts his force weapon for free despite Renown limitations, I believe. Otherwise it would state so (as it does IIRC with the Tac Marine's special amo.)



#3 herichimo

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Posted 27 January 2014 - 02:47 PM

Starting equipment ignores renown restrictions. As long as it specifically states a character is issued the item as starting equipment, the character gains it.

 

Of course, if your character breaks his force weapon somehow, he cannot get a replacement till he meets the requirements.



#4 Ansalagon

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Posted 27 January 2014 - 03:03 PM

Of course, if your character breaks his force weapon somehow, he cannot get a replacement till he meets the requirements.

 

I think it would be a bit cruel, to deny him that... But i do believe it states something in the describtion that they are practically indestructible...

 

So yes they DO start with a forceweapon.. But its worth noting that the liberian's weapons ARE very powerful. They grow with the liberian's strength... an they have the potential to insta-kill most opponents... So keep an eye on it.. in case of balance issues in your group... (though i never had this myself)

 

But don't let him requisition an second one till he meets the requirement...



#5 musungu

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 05:27 AM

Thanks for the info, so he should have gotten one right at the beginning. Well, never mind, I'll spin the story so that he'll be seriously indebted to the crazy Space Wolf Forge Master of Erioch to get one - here's a good adventure seed if I ever saw one :) I just have to retcon how he lost his original one in the first place - any ideas regarding that?



#6 Avdnm

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 05:56 AM

As he's a new Player, maybe you can use his background story for that.



#7 musungu

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 07:11 AM

Yeah, I think he'll have a Dark Secret ™ as a reason why he was shipped off unceremoniously to Deathwatch. I always wanted to pit the team against a Daemon (Prince) at some point, so win-win :)



#8 deaddmwalking

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Posted 03 February 2014 - 06:19 PM



 I just have to retcon how he lost his original one in the first place - any ideas regarding that?

 

I'd suggest working out with the player why he didn't start with a Force Sword.  Losing a weapon should be such a shameful act that your player might legitimately feel that their character concept is being destroyed - without even giving them a chance to do anything about it!  Your player's character might DIE before losing the weapon, and you're just going to say 'sorry dude, thems the breaks'?  

 

There are other ways that could spin this in a much more positive light for the character and still accomplish the goal.  For example, there was a shortage of force weapons because anyone with even a spark of talent was needed immediately for a daemon invasion - since he was going to the Deathwatch and wasn't going to be directly involved in this campaign he voluntarily forgo his requisition of a force sword to give his brothers a better chance at victory...  Or the chapter could be in a dispute with the Deathwatch.  The chapter may have felt that the Deathwatch was careless with equipment they provided, and demanded that the Deathwatch use their own armories to outfit Marines from this chapter until 'debts are paid'.  The librarian is in bureaucratic limbo while this is resolved - perhaps getting the sword from a Forge Master is the solution to the problem...  

 

In any case, the best thing is definitely copping to the mistake and letting the player know that you'd like to make getting the sword significant for the story and get some ideas from them on what happened before the game started.  

 

But be careful about simply declaring something that casts the character in a bad light.  Players are usually more than happy to put 'bad stuff' in their background, but it's important that it is something that they chose for themselves.  



#9 musungu

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Posted 04 February 2014 - 05:33 AM

I already brought the topic up with the player - he explicitly stated he wants to earn the sword. The guy is an experienced roleplayer, and, while new at DW, sees that the Librarian is insanely powerful, so he has no irresistible urge to go full munchkin on me immediately. We already established he'll try to persuade the Forge Master, thus creating an excellent roleplaying opportunity. The exact details of why he is going swordless are being worked on at the moment, but I'd like to give him creative freedom in drawing the backstory. At the moment I'm making him read all the Blood Angels literature in the world, we'll see where it goes.

The issue with voluntarily giving up the sword is that it's stated that DW recruits are experienced warriors with decades of honourable service behind them - it's hard to imagine someone who is deemed fit for service in DW would go without proper equipment to bring out his full potential. The dispute on the other hand is a good idea, I might use that, thanks.



#10 venkelos

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Posted 13 February 2014 - 02:23 PM

Sort of a shame they can't go on a mission some other group failed and "find" it; it could be a regular (hah) force weapon, or something more storied and cool (even if mechanically, it's not a super force weapon. People are cheap, but the Imperium will launch whole Crusades to recover single objects, even if only because they might not have the ease of making more, at the time. It might feel good to find a lost force sword, and carry it on beyond the fallen last marine, to allow its legend to continue, but that's just me.



#11 musungu

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Posted 14 February 2014 - 04:10 AM

Sort of a shame they can't go on a mission some other group failed and "find" it; it could be a regular (hah) force weapon, or something more storied and cool (even if mechanically, it's not a super force weapon. People are cheap, but the Imperium will launch whole Crusades to recover single objects, even if only because they might not have the ease of making more, at the time. It might feel good to find a lost force sword, and carry it on beyond the fallen last marine, to allow its legend to continue, but that's just me.

That's why it's so nice being the GM - the player doesn't know it yet, but they absolutely will have a mission to retrieve a relic force weapon, just a bit later, with appropriately buffed enemies. My Tzeenchian cunning is once again triumphant. Just As Planned. :ph34r:

To return to the topic, the newest Deathwatch book, The Emperor's Chosen, details something very similar to your idea. The whole Heroic Legacy thing is quite interesting, but it looks like it was designed for high-level characters, so I'll pick it up only if the DW campaign takes root.



#12 Visitor Q

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Posted 14 February 2014 - 06:51 AM

If you librarian has managed to complete a load of missions without his force sword he has effectively been operating at a handicap so might be due some extra exps or renown points as compensation. 



#13 musungu

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Posted 14 February 2014 - 08:49 AM

If you librarian has managed to complete a load of missions without his force sword he has effectively been operating at a handicap so might be due some extra exps or renown points as compensation. 

 

There's no reason to pity the Librarian, he had plenty of opportunities to use Blood Lance instead. But yes, the idea is good and solid. I wanted to give him some Renown anyway, because he joined the campaign a few missions later - the XP gap was corrected at the beginning, but he is still a few Renown short, because I like that better when it is earned. Problem solved, thanks!



#14 herichimo

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 01:48 AM

Bonus renown is not necessarily a terrible idea, but he shouldn't get bonus XP just for not taking a weapon (Lib gets bonus XP then Dev leaves his heavy bolter home and demands his bonus xp, and then the assault marine demands bonus XP for not taking a jump pack even while wearing terminator armor...). If there is a reason, such as a punishment - just one example, (roleplaying, yah!) he didn't have his force sword, then he shouldn't even get renown. In the case of the example in the last sentance, a character shouldn't be rewarded for carrying out his punishment. Now if he had his own "personal mission" (more roleplaying, YAH!) which involved re-aquiring his force sword from the hands of some foul xenos thief, the rewards for that mission can include XP and renown commiserate with the difficulty of accomplishing said personal mission.


Edited by herichimo, 16 February 2014 - 01:48 AM.


#15 bogi_khaosa

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 05:41 AM

Librarians can get Blood Lance at Rank 1?



#16 musungu

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Posted 17 February 2014 - 03:59 AM

Bonus renown is not necessarily a terrible idea, but he shouldn't get bonus XP just for not taking a weapon.

 

I agree, so I didn't award any extra XP, just some renown. He got the XP by convincing the Forge Master to get a new one (the fate of the original weapon is intentionally left murky). I liked the earlier suggested idea of the chapter denying the artefact because of a previous disagreement with the DW, but it occurred to me that Mordigael is a Blood Angel, and I judge heavy politics is still too early for the group. I will introduce the storyline of the old sword when the player familiarises himself more with the 40K setting, and has enough insight to debate the planned plot hook with me.

 

Librarians can get Blood Lance at Rank 1?

 

Yeah, it has no prerequisites, besides being a Blood Angel, in RAW. My player bought it as one of his Rank 1 powers. It's basically Smite, minus the area effects (it rather travels in a straight line), but with Toughness bonus not reducing damage. Overall, it's a bit more colourful than Smite, so I like it.



#17 Visitor Q

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 08:50 AM

Bonus renown is not necessarily a terrible idea, but he shouldn't get bonus XP just for not taking a weapon (Lib gets bonus XP then Dev leaves his heavy bolter home and demands his bonus xp, and then the assault marine demands bonus XP for not taking a jump pack even while wearing terminator armor...). If there is a reason, such as a punishment - just one example, (roleplaying, yah!) he didn't have his force sword, then he shouldn't even get renown. In the case of the example in the last sentance, a character shouldn't be rewarded for carrying out his punishment. Now if he had his own "personal mission" (more roleplaying, YAH!) which involved re-aquiring his force sword from the hands of some foul xenos thief, the rewards for that mission can include XP and renown commiserate with the difficulty of accomplishing said personal mission.

 

Obviously it's up to the GM of the group, but there is clearly a difference between a player making a choice to leave or swap out weapons and the GM imposing a penalty on a PC or the mission as a whole.  The xp award suggestions in the rule book clearly have factored in PCs having standard equipment as a baseline.  If one PC is in fact below the baseline due to circumstances not under their control then for them the mission was necessarily harder and it could be argued they should get more xps.

 

Otherwise by the same logic a PC group which because of the GM's plot has crashed behind enemy lines lost their equipment and has to take on an ork warband with a collection of sharpened sticks should get the same xps as the PC group whcih arrived fully armed and riding a landraider.  After all the only difference is the weapons that the two groups have.....


Edited by Visitor Q, 19 February 2014 - 08:54 AM.


#18 herichimo

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 10:46 AM

You are playing a roleplaying game. If you choose to go underequipped when you have the opportunity not to, you shouldn't be rewarded. that's a personal choice.

Mission complications happen, they are part of warfare. Again, its a roleplaying game, your characters get stuck in a tough situation they must roleplay and choose to continue at a disadvantage or bug-out and possibly try again. There should not be math formulae or figuring to reward a "fair" amount of XP based on every concievable possible contingiency or gear equipment. Mainly it doesn't make sense, will cause all sorts of "that's not fair" arguments, and is practically impossible to implement correctly; but have at it if you want to, you can deal with it if you like.

 

The XP you get is the XP the mission rewards, end of story. If a player should get 100 xp for blowing up that missile launcher, then he gets 100 XP if he does it with a lascannon or a sharp stick. Bonus rewards for roleplaying or ingenuity are appropriate though. If the player manages to fool the missile launcher's ally to fire an artillery barrage onto the launcher instead of doing it himself, then that would deserve a few bonus points (I'd say 20 for a 100 xp objective).

 

That's enough of this, shouldn't have gone down this rabbit hole as far as I did... This is the rules discussion forum, if you wish to continue this line of thought do so in the Deathwatch Gamesmaster section.



#19 Visitor Q

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 07:55 AM

herichimo: 'You are playing a roleplaying game. If you choose to go underequipped when you have the opportunity not to, you shouldn't be rewarded. that's a personal choice.'

 

Agreed as previously stated.  However that is not what was being discussed. 

 

herichimo: 'This is the rules discussion forum, if you wish to continue this line of thought do so in the Deathwatch Gamesmaster section'
 

I disagree.

 

XPs and how they are awarded is directly relevant to the discussion.  XPs are part of the rules albiet with a lot of interpretation and flexibility for the GM .  The OP wanted opinions and suggestions as to how to deal with the situation of his librarian player being disallowed use of his force sword.

 

My suggestion was that because the GM had denied him the use of the force sword and it was not a player choice then this meant that the missions were neccessarily more difficult for the librarian hence using the awards suggestion in the rule book the GM is justified in saying to his PCs that the librarian should be given a one off bonus of x amount of XPs and/or increased renown.

 

It is the GMs game so obviously he decides.  In this case he thought renown only was appropriate for his group.  Indeed I note in re-reading musungu's posts that in principle the XP compensation occured in any case as the librarian was given more XPs at the begining of the campaign.

 

However this does not invalidate my initial point nor does it make sense to conflate it with a completly different argument which is XPs given based on the personal equipment choices of individual PCs 

 

Now that that is settled I'm happy to move on.

 

The main issues I would consider with having the librarian re-aquiring the force weapon would be 

  • Is it being held on trust by his Chapter
  • Was it lost and in what circumstances
  • Was the weapon lost during his tenure in the Deathwatch or before. 

It seems to me that if the weapon was lost during his tenure in the deathwatch then he might have a chance of reclaiming his original one.  If he lost it duirng his service to his original Chapter then it could be on the other side of the Galaxy.

 

You could go all Lord of the Rings on it and actually have the weapon stored in a Deathwatch vault like 'Narsil' where it has been shattered by some particularly horrific xenos monstrosity that the librarian or his predecessor encountered previously.  If you haven't played Ark of Lost Souls yet it might even add some extra flavour to the Beast of Thule.

 

You could combine this idea with the idea of his chapter needing all the force weapons they can for another conflict.  it would make the loss of such a valuable asset even harder to endure.


Edited by Visitor Q, 20 February 2014 - 08:29 AM.





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