So, I am currently running Damned Cities- and its going great. I've made tons of additions which the players seem to be enjoying quite a bit- and out of all of them, only one of them has me really disappointed- in that "I could have done better!" way.
I am talking about the Slaught- I love these guys: very Cthulhuesque xenos who mix horror and paranoia both IN and OUT of Combat! I've no idea how I've managed to fumble them up so badly, what with their type being one of my personal's style's strong point… usually…
The problem is- the players don't fear the Slaught! In any way, shape or form. They are now Rank Six, with a collection of powerful [Bolt Pistols, Angelus Carabine, Omnissian Axe] weapons- and they've made a mockery of the Slaughts I've thrown at them in combat, what with Great rolls on their parts and horrible rolls on my part.
Last night, the players manage to "take out a team" in the "Hunt for the Mirror Shards" by wiping out the part of the Weeper's Guild that the Slaught had infiltrated [allying with that Rogue Trader, and her Arch-militant after all :P] and even though Everyone burned a fate point (Except for the Tech-priest…. whose the only character that's survived from game one!!!!!) they managed to beat a Principal, 4 Constructs [that stayed Jammed most of the fight though], two "Giant Worms" and One… Worm-God! [A Trygon, Though somewhat nerfed…. in terms of of a heavy bonus to hitting it, as it was so big, and it had two attacks- One "Hits everyone on one side of the map" and a "Single Target Strike", with the built it directives that it wouldn't use the super attack when the Slaught came down from his pedestal to absorb the memory of one of the dying players so as to find out where they were keeping the Mirror Shards].
Suffice to say- they fought the damned Worm-God to the last, with Melta Bombs, Flamers, "Dual Shots"- Lots of dodges and lots of good rolls- they won. They killed it [the Worm God] and the "Principal" escaped- with the Players forfeiting their chance to kill him in favor of grabbing the mirror shard he kept hidden in the swarming mass of maggots that form up his body.
In terms of story, I'd set up a sort of an atmosphere in the Tenth District but I feel as if I could have done a better job with them. The rogue trader gave ominous warnings about an Organisation, a "Syndicate" she called it, after the Tech-priest puzzled out the fact that she was working with the Slaught because she didn't have much of a choice [Offering her an Inquisition pardon if she would lead the group to the Cult's hiding place.]
Now, the Slaught are more or less finished on Sinophia- they've lost the two Mirror Shards they had, lost their human agents [The Legate, who the Risen murdered, and the Rogue Trader] and the "Worm God", who was their Ultimate weapon, has been defeated….
But they'll be back- on Solomon for example, and Mara- and maybe, before that, I can squeeze them into tattered Fates as well.
But I fear that their…. poor performance on Sinophia will lessen them as a threat in the eyes of the players.
Does anybody have any suggestions or ideas on how to make them interesting and scary again?
I was thinking that, maybe, seeing as The Principal survived, he can still attempt one final ambush on the players perhaps. But as his combat resources have been stymied, this would have to be a real "Horror" [Psychological and Supernatural], justified as some field generated by a Slaught "Nightmare Science" artifact- which I've used before. But my record with the Slaught and horror has been really poor- so any ideas for this encounter would be very appreciated.
Or, if its too late to salvage them on Sinophia, how can I start building them back up as a threat before its time to head back to the rest of the campaign??
I am hoping the damage I've done to their reputations here can still be repaired with the help of you fine folk