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Expected Power Level?


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#1 venkelos

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 04:58 AM

So, does anyone around here know, either based on released bits I haven't read, or knowing the right people, about what Power Level this game is going to play from? If my memory serves, Dark Heresy (+5) Rogue Trader (+5) Deathwatch is an accurate approximation. Inquisitors often draw their Acolytes from active Guard units, while the high-trained servants of the Lord-Captains is usually beyond their sight, and the Space Marines of the Deathwatch are just beyond their reach, most of the time. That sort of implies, at least to me, that your "average" Only War character might be the lower end of the power spectrum; otherwise, what Guard are the Inquisitors drawing from, that it lags behind the battle-hardened Veterans?

I suppose it's possible that the characters in Only War might start with some "Veteran points", reflecting that they have already been through some meat grinders, and demonstrated an ability to survive, and be Player Character worthy, where many other Guardsmen die around them, like Guardsmen do, being slightly less well-equipped than Star Wars Stormtroopers, but without knowing, I fear that they might feel like newborn baby Guardsman, like Dark Heresy often sounds like it might feel, based on the fact that every other FFG game of the line STARTS numerous levels ahead of Dark Heresy's begin point, for Power/Power Creep. It might be justified by the numerous other guys around the players; it's an army, and there are many other guys dying, maybe rather than you. Does anyone else know yet where in the Power Flow Table these characters will fall? Are they going to be halfway through their "base" progression before they can even pick up a heavy weapon/special weapon Talent?

I'm assuming no one else knows yet, either, but I thought I'd ask, in case something hot posted/podcasted/whatever, and I just happened to miss it. Thanks.



#2 Bassemandrh

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 05:36 AM

Im hoping for something around DH level. Not higher than RT, as to me, they should be pretty much qualified for their roles, otherwise they wouldn't be on the ships.



#3 kalanabha

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 06:15 AM

POWERLEVEL OVER 9000!!!!!



#4 Guest_Not In Sample_*

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 07:04 AM

kalanabha said:

POWERLEVEL OVER 9000!!!!!

That's Deathwatch. At least it ought to be.



#5 Radwraith

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 09:59 AM

AluminiumWolf said:

kalanabha said:

 

POWERLEVEL OVER 9000!!!!!

 

 

That's Deathwatch. At least it ought to be.

DH - lvl 1 (0XP), RT- Lvl 5 (5000xp), BC- Lvl 6 (7000xp) and DW- lvl 8 (12000xp). All experience points throughout the 40k RPG is based on DH baseline. I hope that OW starts at lvl 1.



#6 Dulahan

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 01:39 PM

I'm gonna guess less than Rogue Trader for sure.  Possibly at, or slightly above Dark Heresy though.



#7 Hehateme

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 02:46 PM

I've heard that OW will be using the Black Crusade rules, so I reckon the power level for OW will be similar to the power level for beginning characters in BC. Human heretic characters that is, not Chaos Space Marines.

I certainly hope the power level is comparable to RT or BC anyway. DH characters are a bit too lackluster in my opinion.



#8 Radwraith

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 04:54 PM

Hehateme said:

 

I've heard that OW will be using the Black Crusade rules, so I reckon the power level for OW will be similar to the power level for beginning characters in BC. Human heretic characters that is, not Chaos Space Marines.

I certainly hope the power level is comparable to RT or BC anyway. DH characters are a bit too lackluster in my opinion.

 

 

I can't see where using BC "mechanics" would necessarily require starting at any lvl. While some characters (Notably Comissar or Sergeant) would necessitate a higher experience lvl, I would also want the system to support playing the common grunt guardsman (lvl 2 in DH) or even a conscript-recruit. Gm's can always opt to allow their particular group to start at a higher level!

I think the reason BC starts where it does is to allow the "Human" characters to be even remotely interesting to play next to even a "Base model" Astartes.



#9 Hehateme

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 05:17 PM

Well, I suppose I've GM-ed 40 k long enuff that I could start the PCs at a slightly higher rank if the default power level is too low for the campaign I have in mind. Or simply just play it by ear and see how things work out. I have to say that one thing I really liked about RT was how your character got certain goodies based on their background (Hive-born rather than Death-World born, street thug vs. noble, etc). I thought that was inspired and wouldn't mind something similar in OW.

I disagree that certain specialties (Comissar, Sargeant) should start with more xp than others. I think that's a sure-fire way to cause a gaming group to cry foul and break apart. I think every specialty should start with the same xp, but each specialty should have different abilities to start with, and cheaper access to certain things that fit the theme of that specialty.

 



#10 Blood Pact

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 05:56 PM

Based on the fact that you can apparently play Commissars, Storm Troopers, and possibly Ogryns, I'd say Only War is going to have a starting power level on par with Rogue Trader. Guardsmen of that 'level' would have enough experience and training (and rank, and equipment) that the PC's would stand out from the crowd while still feeling like a part of the vast and glorious organization that is the Imperial Guard. Characters of the same starting level as DH would be the stereotypical troopers that get fed in to a merciless meatgrinder en masse (albeit some Regiments still fight more like trained soldiers than others). And that actually sounds like something that wouldn't be fun to play (as opposed to a squad of veterans and/or specialists).

I can't see the characters being varying power levels, I thought that might be the case in Black Crusade but if it wasn't there, when Space Marines are involved, it's very unlikely they'd do it in Only War when the IG is a much more organized and uniform organization (in its own diverse way).

And BC rules in part is probably going to happen. But I hardly think they're going to free-form things as much as it, it's the Imperial Guard. I think we'll see some XP Charts reminiscent of Deathwatch, with standard, specialty, and regiment tables.



#11 Dulahan

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 06:03 PM

Hehateme said:

I've heard that OW will be using the Black Crusade rules, so I reckon the power level for OW will be similar to the power level for beginning characters in BC. Human heretic characters that is, not Chaos Space Marines.

 

 

I am genuinely curious where you heard that.  I've been following this quite close since it was announced to try and gleam any info I could, and your post is the first one that's said that which I've seen.



#12 Hehateme

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 08:17 PM

Dulahan, I believe it was in the "One too Many" thread. HBMC stated in a "I can't confirm or deny" kinda way that the BC rules were being used for Only War. He only referred to combat though I believe, not to character creation.



#13 Radwraith

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 08:51 PM

Hehateme said:

Well, I suppose I've GM-ed 40 k long enuff that I could start the PCs at a slightly higher rank if the default power level is too low for the campaign I have in mind. Or simply just play it by ear and see how things work out. I have to say that one thing I really liked about RT was how your character got certain goodies based on their background (Hive-born rather than Death-World born, street thug vs. noble, etc). I thought that was inspired and wouldn't mind something similar in OW.

I disagree that certain specialties (Comissar, Sargeant) should start with more xp than others. I think that's a sure-fire way to cause a gaming group to cry foul and break apart. I think every specialty should start with the same xp, but each specialty should have different abilities to start with, and cheaper access to certain things that fit the theme of that specialty.

 

I think I've created a misunderstanding! I don't mean to say that characters or players should start at different exp. lvls. Rather, I believe certain specialties should be available as higher lvl "Branches" of the advancement tree. For example: Commisars would be a "Branch" available from the Stormtrooper specialty tree. I'm no where near in the "One too many" crowd but I think DH had the right answer for dealing with characters starting at the lower (Normal) end of the advancement tree. I'm not quite ready to give up on some DH ideas yet and I really do hope that we are able to play characters at all different strata of the Imperial military. From Trooper to general and anything in between!



#14 peterstepon

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 03:04 PM

Since Imperial guard are the warhammer equivalent of the guys in red shirts from Star Trek...

I would guess that you take the same power level from Dark Heresy, then go down one level from that.

I wonder if this game will be like Paranoia where players roll up new characters twice per game session. 



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Posted 20 April 2012 - 05:14 PM

 The Guard are kinda supposed to be the cream of the Imperiums soldiers. I think. The real dregs are in the Planetary Defence Forces and conscript militias.

They are called the Imperial Guard after Napoleon's Imperial Guard, who were renowned for being 'ard troops. I mean, they are the Waffen SS of Napoleonic Wargaming, in that they are the cool units everyone wants to collect, but feels vaguely guilty about wanting to instead of more bread and butter men.

Now, my own tastes run to the soldiers experience in 40k being based off Vietnam war movies* and Blackadder Goes Forth. So men who are not sure what they are fighting for with not much in the way of élan.

BUT I am not going to begrudge anyone who wants to base their army on a more motivated, professional, cooler model.

Either way, 40k could use more exposure of the PDFs, for the sole purpose of making the Guard look good.

*And not We Were Soldiers either



#16 The_Shaman

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Posted 21 April 2012 - 01:03 AM

AluminiumWolf said:

 The Guard are kinda supposed to be the cream of the Imperiums soldiers. I think. The real dregs are in the Planetary Defence Forces and conscript militias.

 

I imagine it really depends on the regiment in question. There are some guard units that have more than their share of conscripts and try to bury the enemy in bodies and lasbolts. After all, those are things the Imperium has in abundance - why not play to your strength?

 

Some regiments are definitely elite units, but that doesn't mean that all are to the same high standard. Either way,  I laughed out loud when I read the core book descripion stating the Guard is "often outnumbered and outgunned." That works for the Space Marines, but if it happens to the Guard - well, someone had blunder'd.



#17 N0-1_H3r3

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Posted 21 April 2012 - 04:38 AM

The_Shaman said:

I imagine it really depends on the regiment in question. There are some guard units that have more than their share of conscripts and try to bury the enemy in bodies and lasbolts. After all, those are things the Imperium has in abundance - why not play to your strength?

 

Some regiments are definitely elite units, but that doesn't mean that all are to the same high standard. Either way,  I laughed out loud when I read the core book descripion stating the Guard is "often outnumbered and outgunned." That works for the Space Marines, but if it happens to the Guard - well, someone had blunder'd.

As much as I'm shocked to be in this situation, I agree with AluminiumWolf.

Fundamentally, the Imperial Guard must possess a certain degree of per-soldier quality - it's actually a requirement of the laws of the Imperium. A tithe of Guardsmen consists of at least ten percent of the armed forces of the world being tithed at that particular moment - whether that forms a single regiment or many varies for numerous reasons. The Departmento Munitorum is within their right to demand sanctions be placed upon a world that provides fighting forces of insufficient quality. Now, every world is required by law - that is, the Lex Imperialis, which is enforced by the Adeptus Arbites - to maintain a standing Planetary Defence Force. Failure to do this is a criminal act on the part of the Imperial Commander (the official term for a planetary governor) of that world, and one that will be punished swiftly. As the primary standing armed force, this means that PDF forces will be the primary source of Imperial Guardsmen.

It stands to reason, then, that the regiments of the Imperial Guard will be at least as effective in battle as local PDF forces... because they were drawn from those forces and then given further training. And that's just the baseline. Worlds which produce almost nothing but Imperial Guard tend to produce an extremely high standard of soldier in large quantities as a matter of pride and/or because their worlds are just so dangerous to live on in the first place.

This doesn't preclude a 'bury the enemy in our corpses' strategy... but that's a matter for the Generals to decide more often than not (many of whom view strategy as a mathematical equation and the soldiers under their command as nothing more than a quantified resource to be expended), rather than officers within the regiments.

Yes, the Imperial Guard do get outnumbered and outgunned - in the Imperium, as abundant as many resources (including manpower) are, their distribution is frequently uneven and access to those resources isn't always where it needs to be. It isn't unusual for Imperial Guard forces to be cut off from supply or reinforcement (indeed, the reliability and rechargeable nature of the lasgun is an asset in precisely such circumstances - lasguns keep firing long after you've run out of flamer fuel or autocannon shells), stuck on a world where their numbers are dwindling and the enemy outnumbers them heavily.

This is key with the Imperial Guard - they're the primary armed force of the Imperium, alongside the Imperial Navy. That means, if there's a ground war somewhere, whatever the conditions, then it's more than likely that the Imperial Guard will be fighting it.


Writing Credits for Fantasy Flight Games: Into the Storm, Edge of the Abyss, Battlefleet Koronus, Hostile Acquisitions, Black Crusade Core Rulebook, First Founding, The Jericho Reach, The Soul Reaver, Only War, The Navis Primer,Ark of Lost Souls, and Hammer of the Emperor

I no longer write for, or am employed by, Fantasy Flight Games in any fashion. All of my comments are my own, and do not reflect the opinions of any employer, past, present, or future.

#18 Dulahan

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Posted 24 April 2012 - 06:21 PM

There''''s also at least two other ''''bury them in bodies'''' armies out there.  Really, three, when you go truly thematic and add in rogue guard/chaos sorts.

 

The three?

 

Orks.  Very possibly outnumber a guard army.

Tyranids.  Mostly outnumber everything.

And aforementioned Renegade Guard/Chaos/etc - which is basically just guard with spiky bits.

 

And that''s just three groups that are common foes.



#19 DJSunhammer

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Posted 25 April 2012 - 06:46 AM

peterstepon said:

Since Imperial guard are the warhammer equivalent of the guys in red shirts from Star Trek…

I would guess that you take the same power level from Dark Heresy, then go down one level from that.

I wonder if this game will be like Paranoia where players roll up new characters twice per game session. 

You can''t go one level down from DH, DH is already the lowest level.



#20 Cynical Cat

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 12:43 PM

Game mechanics are going to be close to BC, because FFG has been tinkering and improving the game mechanics everytime it produces a new game, which is something I appreciate.  Power level is probably going to be close to DH, but a little bit higher because baseline DH is simply too low.  We know there will be Careers like Heavy Gunner, which is going to require better starting weapon talents than DH by its every nature and that equipment and starting abilities for Careers like Commissar (chain weapons usual showing up around the 2k mark in DH) and Stormtrooper have to better than DH or render those starting Careers a joke.  There will probably be less gear creep so the upper levels won't get crazy as things like force fields and power weapons are very rare in the Imperial Guard. 






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