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Playing without comrades


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#1 rabski

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Posted 29 October 2012 - 04:38 AM

 Hi there.

 

Have anyone tried running a game without the comrade system?

If you have, did you compensate the PC´s in some way? Like an extra half action each turn or maybe slightly better stats?

 

Im about to run my first game and I am thinking of trashing the comrades. I really would like to hear your take on playing without comrades.



#2 Musclewizard

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Posted 29 October 2012 - 07:33 AM

I wouldn't remove Comrades tbh. Having the Comrades there gives a lot of roleplaying potential but also making the squad feel more…complete.  There's a lot of "average soldiers" in the Guard and Comrades usually are just that.

Anyway, if you really want to remove Comrades you could give your players 5-10 points of characteristics or maybe an additional fate point or wound to make up for it but really, I don't see a reason to remove them in the first place.



#3 Plushy

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Posted 29 October 2012 - 03:23 PM

 They always get forgotten by my players and myself whenever we play, and on top of that my group just doesn't like the concept. They only ever get used for that Order that boosts BS for a turn.

I'd rather just give all Guardsmen a +5 BS at CharGen.


My apologies to anyone I offend; FFG staff, playtesters, and forum users alike. 

 

Please check out my Dark Heresy to Only War conversion! You can find it on the main Only War forum. I'm always looking for more people to playtest it!


#4 Kasatka

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Posted 29 October 2012 - 11:23 PM

Plushy said:

 They always get forgotten by my players and myself whenever we play, and on top of that my group just doesn't like the concept. They only ever get used for that Order that boosts BS for a turn.

I'd rather just give all Guardsmen a +5 BS at CharGen.

But narratively they make the squad so much more than just 4 to 6 players!

Say there's a minefield that needs someone disposable to scan, or some heavy lifting that needs doing, assorted dangerous and menial tasks can be passed over to the comrades to free up the player characters for the truly heroic stuff.
Getting rid of them just dumbs the system down and makes it a human version of Deathwatch tbh…


Only the insane have strength enough to prosper.

Only those that prosper may truly judge what is sane.


#5 Macharias the Mendicant

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Posted 30 October 2012 - 02:09 AM

Agreed Kasatka: the Comrade system is kind of OW's 'thing.'



#6 Plushy

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Posted 30 October 2012 - 08:29 AM

I don't see why comrades need mechanics, exactly. It's pretty easy to just say "you have four other troopers with you" and to have them do stuff. Giving them all personalities and (imho) clumsy mechanics desn't help anyone. Each of the three groups I playtested with continuously forgot about them.

And I don't know why you need anything else to make the PCs heroic. It's a grim universe, and they already have a leg up on everyone else by virtue of Fate Points.


My apologies to anyone I offend; FFG staff, playtesters, and forum users alike. 

 

Please check out my Dark Heresy to Only War conversion! You can find it on the main Only War forum. I'm always looking for more people to playtest it!


#7 CaptainTrek

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Posted 01 November 2012 - 04:18 PM

My group went in the exact opposite direction; making Comrades LESS abstracted.

To facilitate this, we established the following rules:

1: Specialisations that get Comrades get them as normal.


2: A Comrade is a fully functional character controlled by the player of the PC to whom the Cohort is assigned, but they do not use the normal character creation rules. Instead, every Comrade is created as follows:

2a: Cohorts have 30 in every attribute. One or two attribute may be increased to 35 (you cannot increase one attribute to 40 instead), at the cost of reducing two other attributes to 25 (you cannot increase one attribute to 20 instead). For simplicity, Cohorts do not apply any modifiers to their attributes that would otherwise be provided by the regiment, though players as an optional rule may agree to apply these adjustments if they see fit.

2b: Each Cohort has all of that regiment's standard issue gear, and all Skills and Talents that the regiment automatically provides. Each Cohort may then be assigned three additional Skills trained at "Known" level of the player's choice, though these Skills cannot be Skills that have the "Investigation" or "Interaction" descriptors without specific GM approval.

2c: Each Comrade has 10 wounds and 0 Fate Points.


3: Cohorts are controlled as PCs as normal and treated as PCs for all purposes such as being targeted in combat. The Cohesion rules may, as an optional rule, still be applied but with the following caveats:

3a: Regardless of whether they are in Cohesion or not, for simplicity Comrades always act on the PC's Initiative count. (this rule applies even if Cohesion rules are not otherwise being used) As an optinal rule, this rule may be ignored.

3b: Provided they are in Cohesion with their PC, Comrades also share the PC's results on all Fear and Pinning tests, including any subsequent rolls on the Shock table in the case of Fear tests. As an optinal rule, players may be allowed, after all relevant rolls have been completed for the PC, to allow the Comrade then to roll on their own Willpower score in an effort to get a better result than the PC did (albeit at the risk of getting a worse result in the case of Fear tests). This is to represent that once, every-so-often, an ordinary Guardsman may prove able to rise above the norm and demonstrate the same sort of potential that the PCs themselves demonstrated back when they were in the Comrade's place.

3c: PCs may use (and Comrades benefit from) Orders, but the Take Cover! order no longer exists for obvious reasons. Additionally, enemies are not restricted from specifically targeting Comrades if they so choose, though a doubles attack roll against a PC still hits the Comrade instead provided if it is in Cohesion. Also, if a PC takes any movement that requires a Full Action, a Comrade in Cohesion must also take a Full action to avoid odd situations such as a Comrade sprinting over 20 metres and then firing off an automatic volley from his lasrifle all on the same turn.

3d: Comrades acquire Insanity and Corruption points the same way they do in the core rules, merely expiring if they take too many points at once rather than tracking every individual point. Players may choose, as an optinal rule, to instead track Insanity and Corruption points for Comrades the same way they are tracked for PCs.



#8 ac429

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 09:11 AM

Under the current rules, if your group wants to play without comrades, they could try playing a stormtrooper fireteam. :)  Or stormtroopers lead by a Commisair.  Or why not 4 Commisairs?  The rules have nothing against that. :P

To be  honest though, I feel like Comrades are a huge cop out.  The arguements I hear is that, they do the heavy lifting so that the players can do 'heroic' things, or that the comrades are cannon fodder, or that it fleshes out the squad.

First of all, if we wanted to play heroic characters, we could just play deathwatch.  If you play IG, you're doing pretty much the least glorified thing possible.  If you're going to seriously RP that, you're supposed to do that heavy lifting, GRUNT work yourself.

Secondly, the squad can be fleshed out by just adding NPCs.  Are the players playing an infantry squad?  Why don't the DM just add 5 or 6 NPCs to fill out the squad.  Then, if none of the players play a heavy gunner, and the squad might come against a tank, the DM can just add an NPC heavy gunner with a rocket launcher.  Same thing with weapon specialist or sergeant.  Is the squad playing a weapon specialist or heavy weapons squad?  Those are capped at 6 guardsmen, so 4 players with comrades already break that canon.

Lastly, the fact that comrades reduce the danger of being shot is the biggest cop out, ever.  Being in guard has it's dangers, and by skirting around this, the players are losing out on the exact RP opportunity that being IG is supposed to afford them, as opposed to say dark heresy or rogue trader.  Being a guardmans is dangerous, but you have protection in numbers.  Not just your squad, but your platoon, and then your company.  Comrades doesn't take account for that.  Just adding more NPCs will.






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