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How much non-combat stuff?


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#1 NewTroski

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 01:55 PM

Obviously, a game in which the characters play Space Marines is going to be fairly combat heavy.  But how much opportunity for social interaction and real role-playing is there going to be?  It's established storyline that some liberal chapters give their Marines up to 15 minutes a day of free time - everything else is scheduled out for them.

The description says "there are exceptional roleplaying opportunities" due to characters being from different chapters, but this doesn't seem like a huge obstacle to me:  You'll work together because those are your orders, and you're Space Marines, and if you don't follow orders you are a heretic.  The end. 

Is there something I'm not thinking of?



#2 VagrantWhisper

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 02:27 PM

NewTroski said:

You'll work together because those are your orders, and you're Space Marines, and if you don't follow orders you are a heretic.  The end. 

Is there something I'm not thinking of?

Well, at least in the Black Library novels, not following orders doesn't make you a heretic. Much like a modern military organization, insubordination will result in a punishment, but keep in mind that most Space Marines see their fellows as literal blood brothers - no more willing to execute them, than they would be their own flesh and blood.

I think alot of the RP is going to come from the distinct believes that each chapter holds to, and how the player's manage to work within those conflicting beliefs.



#3 MDMann

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 02:35 PM

The DW are assigned to the Most Holy Inquisition, so have a group of Inquisitor's, Acolytes and Throne Agent's to answer too and interact with. I think undercover work is unlikely though...



#4 Bending Arms

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 03:13 PM

Picture a horror surival theme in death watch.  I see a little Cthulhu, some Resident Evil,  with dash Doom and all mixed in Band of Brothers' bowl.  I see a squad land into hell hole aquiring targets, estimating enemy force's strengh, sabotaging as much infrastructure as possible, and remaining alive untill Emperor's wraith will cleanse the place.  Landing on a former human setllement,  investagating strange communications, responding to ship rescue, or just hunting down ork freebooters in the void, the all have roleplaying possiblities outside combat. What doesn't give it the Emperor's Mercy.



#5 Drais

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 03:46 PM

Not much cover for a nine foot tall genetically modified super soldier.



#6 GrimWizard

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 05:05 PM

Heh, if a Space Marine isn't walking around killing everything that moves, then something has gone terribly wrong. Just play a little Dawn of War and that's about all the roleplaying your gonna get. But hey, at least this is cheaper then playing Space Marines in the actual minis game.



#7 jareddm

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 05:27 PM

GrimWizard said:

Heh, if a Space Marine isn't walking around killing everything that moves, then something has gone terribly wrong. Just play a little Dawn of War and that's about all the roleplaying your gonna get. But hey, at least this is cheaper then playing Space Marines in the actual minis game.

I disagree.  Dawn of War, while an excellent game, shows space marines as being used too much like front line holding troops.  A space marine does not have the same priorities as the imperial guard.  From what I've read, space marines are designed to either break through a hard spot, leaving guard troops to clean up the mess, perform a precision strike, or defend a very specific location.

Of all Space Marines, I feel the Deathwatch are the best to be able to incorporate real roleplaying.  The differences between chapters, especially between codex and non-codex chapters would be huge and allow for some very interesting experiences.



#8 Drais

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 05:59 PM

I agree, having read some, but not all, of the Black Library fiction, most of the Space Marines depicted are the exceptions to the rule. We should be looking forward to finding out why Adeptus Astartes power armour has a defense of 12, and not what are the interactions going to be like.  Check out that fiction, especially the Dan Abnett stuff it is really well done.



#9 GrimWizard

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 07:03 PM

jareddm said:

I disagree.  Dawn of War, while an excellent game, shows space marines as being used too much like front line holding troops.  A space marine does not have the same priorities as the imperial guard.  From what I've read, space marines are designed to either break through a hard spot, leaving guard troops to clean up the mess, perform a precision strike, or defend a very specific location.

While you may be right about that in some sectors of the 40k universe. I referenced Dawn of War as an example of how much roleplaying a space marine actually does not what a space marine's role is.

 

While cross-chapter interactions may seem interesting. It pretty much just sounds like player infighting to me; not something I would encourage in a RPG.



#10 Rictus

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 07:17 PM

I have to agree with the contrast in ideology/beliefs between members of the Death Watch teams (Space Wolf rivalry with Dark Angels, a brother-marine originated from one of the chapters from the First-founding feeling some blessed/privileged over other battle-brethren from 'later' chapters, etc.)

IIRC from the WH40K Rogue Trader era space marines participated in policing/military police actions, especially on frontier worlds where the influence of the cult of the God-Emperor is weakest. However we're talking about a squad of Death Watch marines so as well as combat could also mean first contact style encounters with xenos, examination of an unknown threat which has manifested, investigative work under the leadership of an inquisitor as well as interacting with Rogue Traders who operate in similar theatres as well as visitations from the Adeptus Ministorum/Munitorum to ensure that the battle-brethren are not....hmmm....deviating from the one true path.



#11 MILLANDSON

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 10:06 PM

GrimWizard said:

jareddm said:

I disagree.  Dawn of War, while an excellent game, shows space marines as being used too much like front line holding troops.  A space marine does not have the same priorities as the imperial guard.  From what I've read, space marines are designed to either break through a hard spot, leaving guard troops to clean up the mess, perform a precision strike, or defend a very specific location.

 

 

While you may be right about that in some sectors of the 40k universe. I referenced Dawn of War as an example of how much roleplaying a space marine actually does not what a space marine's role is.

 

 

While cross-chapter interactions may seem interesting. It pretty much just sounds like player infighting to me; not something I would encourage in a RPG.

I have to agree, I honestly don't see how this game can be anything other than lots of combat, and lots of combat by itself is dull. It's not like you'll be able to do undercover investigations or anything like that.


~Yea, Tho I Walk Through The Valley Of The Shadow Of Death, I Shall Fear No Evil~

 

Posts/views/opinions are in no way representative of FFG, and are entirely my own.


#12 Evilref

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 10:31 PM

MILLANDSON said:

 

I have to agree, I honestly don't see how this game can be anything other than lots of combat, and lots of combat by itself is dull. It's not like you'll be able to do undercover investigations or anything like that.

The above is entirely contradicted by the material in the book. There is plenty of 'stuff' to facilitate and support roleplaying a Space Marine. As for not doing undercover investigations, well I guess that just leaves a hundred other options on roleplaying. If the above were true, then Rogue Trader must be about nothing but combat either, because that's not a game about undercover investigation.



#13 MILLANDSON

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 12:00 AM

Evilref said:

 

MILLANDSON said:

 

 

I have to agree, I honestly don't see how this game can be anything other than lots of combat, and lots of combat by itself is dull. It's not like you'll be able to do undercover investigations or anything like that.

 

 

The above is entirely contradicted by the material in the book. There is plenty of 'stuff' to facilitate and support roleplaying a Space Marine. As for not doing undercover investigations, well I guess that just leaves a hundred other options on roleplaying. If the above were true, then Rogue Trader must be about nothing but combat either, because that's not a game about undercover investigation.

 

 

You are talking as though that was the only thing I'm interested in, when it was just an example of something I enjoy that I won't be able to do in Deathwatch. Space Marines kill stuff, that's kind of their job, their "shtick". If you can tell me what else they do in Deathwatch, and how I can have the same sort of investigation and social/political adventures as I can GM with Dark Heresy + Rogue Trader, then my view on "roleplaying" as a Space Marine might be changed.

I mean, half of the alluded to classes just sound like "kills things wearing a jump-pack", "kills things by shooting", stuff like that. I just can't see the supposed flexability you and other playtesters for Deathwatch have alluded to in the information we've been given at present.

I'm entirely willing to be proven wrong on this, and I hope I am, but I just don't see it. But then, I've always found Space Marines to be one of the more boring/overused parts of the 40k setting. I'm hoping the game will pull some sort of amazing god-like feat off and make me like it, but at present, I'm sceptical about it.


~Yea, Tho I Walk Through The Valley Of The Shadow Of Death, I Shall Fear No Evil~

 

Posts/views/opinions are in no way representative of FFG, and are entirely my own.


#14 The Hobo Hunter

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 12:10 AM

Don't get me wrong about my interpretations of marine attitudes here; I think space marines can be every bit as well-explored as other 40k characters, despite all their indoctrination and chapter heritage and whatnot that I won't go into detail about here, but I'm edging on agreeing with MILLANDSON in wondering what a space marine could do 'outside of combat'.

I can see 'a few' things a marine might do that don't involve just outright murderising everything that moves, owing to their somewhat special status in the Deathwatch (best possible choice btw FFG), but I can't see any sort of longevity out of a campaign where basic modus operandi is to go in somewhere, act like big damn heroes, kill the boss/steal the macguffin, and then extract from the battlefield.

I'm sure I'm going to be surprised by what I see; hopefully it will be a pleasant one.



#15 Evilref

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 12:23 AM

MILLANDSON said:

You are talking as though that was the only thing I'm interested in, when it was just an example of something I enjoy that I won't be able to do in Deathwatch. Space Marines kill stuff, that's kind of their job, their "shtick". If you can tell me what else they do in Deathwatch, and how I can have the same sort of investigation and social/political adventures as I can GM with Dark Heresy + Rogue Trader, then my view on "roleplaying" as a Space Marine might be changed.

I mean, half of the alluded to classes just sound like "kills things wearing a jump-pack", "kills things by shooting", stuff like that. I just can't see the supposed flexability you and other playtesters for Deathwatch have alluded to in the information we've been given at present.

I'm entirely willing to be proven wrong on this, and I hope I am, but I just don't see it. But then, I've always found Space Marines to be one of the more boring/overused parts of the 40k setting. I'm hoping the game will pull some sort of amazing god-like feat off and make me like it, but at present, I'm sceptical about it.

 

My disappointment, coming from you, was the kneejerk 'don't see how this game can be anything other than lots of combat'. I guess I was just expecting a more reasoned opinion from you. Your followup post is better developed, and of course one of the great things about the 40k RPGs from FFG is that you can take what you wantfrom them. Conspiracy and Horror tie best to DH, Exploration and the mystery of the unknown lean more towards RT etc. Obviously, if you really dislike Space Marines then Deathwatch is probably not for you (though the background material and ideas in the likes of the Jericho Reach are top notch).

 

To say it's nothing but combat, however, is to do the book and the writers a disservice. It's not a one-dimensional game at all.



#16 Santiago

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 12:30 AM

 Oops,

 

Should have read this topic before starting mine.

These problems are exactly my fears, so for now my conclusion is that it will be great book for NPC's or maybe it will be nice to have the pc's take the reigns of a Space Marine after their Throne Agents ordered them in.

Santiago...



#17 MILLANDSON

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 12:35 AM

Evilref said:

MILLANDSON said:

 

You are talking as though that was the only thing I'm interested in, when it was just an example of something I enjoy that I won't be able to do in Deathwatch. Space Marines kill stuff, that's kind of their job, their "shtick". If you can tell me what else they do in Deathwatch, and how I can have the same sort of investigation and social/political adventures as I can GM with Dark Heresy + Rogue Trader, then my view on "roleplaying" as a Space Marine might be changed.

I mean, half of the alluded to classes just sound like "kills things wearing a jump-pack", "kills things by shooting", stuff like that. I just can't see the supposed flexability you and other playtesters for Deathwatch have alluded to in the information we've been given at present.

I'm entirely willing to be proven wrong on this, and I hope I am, but I just don't see it. But then, I've always found Space Marines to be one of the more boring/overused parts of the 40k setting. I'm hoping the game will pull some sort of amazing god-like feat off and make me like it, but at present, I'm sceptical about it.

 

 

 

My disappointment, coming from you, was the kneejerk 'don't see how this game can be anything other than lots of combat'. I guess I was just expecting a more reasoned opinion from you. Your followup post is better developed, and of course one of the great things about the 40k RPGs from FFG is that you can take what you wantfrom them. Conspiracy and Horror tie best to DH, Exploration and the mystery of the unknown lean more towards RT etc. Obviously, if you really dislike Space Marines then Deathwatch is probably not for you (though the background material and ideas in the likes of the Jericho Reach are top notch).

 

To say it's nothing but combat, however, is to do the book and the writers a disservice. It's not a one-dimensional game at all.

Like I said, if anyone can pull off a book that will make people like me, the sceptics, happy to play a Space Marine, it's FFG. It's just, from first glance, Space Marines fight, it's what they do. But then, most of my games are generally only 10% combat or so, since my RT playtest group generally feel that if they have to fight (and it wasn't the only option) they've failed, so yea, Deathwatch might not be for them. I guess I'm just hoping that it's going to be a book that can appeal to everyone, rather than one that ends up on the shelf unplayed because the majority of it is "For The Emperor! *bang bang bang*".


~Yea, Tho I Walk Through The Valley Of The Shadow Of Death, I Shall Fear No Evil~

 

Posts/views/opinions are in no way representative of FFG, and are entirely my own.


#18 Santiago

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 12:42 AM

 Good Point,

 

Though I would love to see some Chapter vs. Inquisition politics instead of the though has been unfaithfull blah...bang bang



#19 Rant

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 01:54 AM

I think this is clearly something to be concerned about, but when I listen to Ross in his interviews with D6G and other podcasts I think it's clear he will address it in the core of the book.  

There are a lot of stories that can be told with DW marines that are filled with traditional drama even if we DO assume they are all emotionless carbon copies of each other.  When someone is loyal to the Imperium AND hates Xenos what do you do when you're ordered by the Inquisition to work with a Farseer?  Hunt down a Radical Inquisitor or follow orders?  What happens when killing that Ork Kaptin means a Hive Fleet eats a world you have NO CHANCE of getting to in time?

Now throw into that a Blood Angel trying to hide the mutation in his gene-seed from his parties Ultramarines Apothecary and you have yourself the makings for some serious roleplaying.  

Just because the players aren't tasked with solving a mystery doesn't mean they won't be helping an Inquisitor solve one either!  The Grey Knights book are a great example of that sort of thing.

In the end though, I think Ross Watson has earned my trust.  Is this an issue to be concerned about?  ABSOLUTELY.  Is this exactly the kind of thing Mr. Watson has jumped on in the past?  Yup!  Listen to him on D6G a little while ago.  When he is presented with an issue like this he sees it as an opportunity to make a more unique and awesome game, not something that makes the game "unpossible in the traditional sense".

I'm not gonna worry about this till I can see a copy of the book in my hands.  Then if he DOESN'T deal with it I'll complain!



#20 Sammail

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 02:34 AM

It's probably going to be a military RPG. Non-combat roleplay will still be at least semi-military in nature. If you can imagin roleplaying a knight templar - or even a fantasy paladin or Navy SEAL, for that matter - you can imagine what playing a Space Marine might be like. Deathwatch is more unorthodox in its methodology than the chapters of origin, from which members are chosen. They're already veterans and can be trusted to schedule their own way of accomplishing tasks, and even though they'll still want to be grim hardcore warriors they have to cooperate with brothers who do things differently. Sometimes very differently. The kill-team will most likely also work close to an inquisitor, who can go about doing his job however he damn well pleases, and will expect his men to keep his pace.

The band of brothers theme will be strong. As a kill-team, working behind enemy lines, going into hot zones and assaulting strongpoints without backup will be common fare. They are an elite of elites, and will have more freedom and carry a higher degree of responsibility thanks to that. As I understand it, ex-Deathwatch members return different from when they left. They've seen, done and know things above and beyond even what the other Space Marines have experience with. The game will probably reflect that.

Space Marines have no use for spare time. Thus the 15 mins, when cloistered in their fortress-monastery. I doubt Deathwatch members have more time for leisure. And why would they want to? Who said being a soldier have to be about sitting around farting, occasionally firing your gun? Military service on their level encompasses more. Recon and other investigation, escort duties, building and guarding strongpoints and holy places, planning and tactics, the logistics behind setting up and keeping hidden bases, shipboard existence while travelling to and from a mission, certainly xeno-biology to pinpoint weaknesses, perhaps even diplomacy and politics in some cases.

Still, the question is if you're even interested in roleplaying a relatively single-minded, hardcore dogmatic/religious, merely near-human ultrawarrior? If not, Rogue Trader and/or Dark Heresy might be a better choice.






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