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Campaign Premise: Necrons, Chaos, Eldar, oh my!


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#1 susanbrindle

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:01 AM

So, I've been considering a campaign based around the premise that the Eldar try to deliberately give a Hive World over to Chaos so as to hamper the soon-to-awaken Necrons on said world. The Players get involved when they wipe out the cat's paw cultists and take the powerful, corrupting artifact.

Then the players have to work out why the Eldar are trying to hard to kill them, and the true nature of the artifact. Once that's done, they'll have to find a way to contain the Necrons, presumably by trading favours with the Navy, Space Marines, or maybe even bringing the Eldar around to help with the siege.

I'm excited about this campaign idea because I feel like it's something that could be executed in the background, without interfering with the freedom and self determination that Rogue Trader is designed around. The Eldar ambushes and the gradual revelation of the artifact can both be included in whatever the traders happen to do, and the investigating and favor-trading are both things that the players are pretty much free to take their own path in.

 

Although any comments and suggestions from more experienced RT GMs would be appreciated, I'm still particularly unsure about

1. What capabilities should the artifact have, in terms of things to make it  A. appealing to the players, B. capable of spreading corruption on a massive scale, and C. really tricky to get rid of (Since the Eldar won't hunt the players if they just go "Oh no! It's cursed!" and throw it out the airlock)

2. How do I express to the players (who are largely new to 40k) the scale of the Necron threat, to encourage them to obtain as many resources as they can to combat it?

3. How precisely the Eldar interference should manifest- A Corsair raider? Warp Spider infiltrators? Ranger snipers whenever they go planetside?



#2 Warmaster Picklehauber

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 05:56 PM

susanbrindle said:

 

So, I've been considering a campaign based around the premise that the Eldar try to deliberately give a Hive World over to Chaos so as to hamper the soon-to-awaken Necrons on said world. The Players get involved when they wipe out the cat's paw cultists and take the powerful, corrupting artifact.

Then the players have to work out why the Eldar are trying to hard to kill them, and the true nature of the artifact. Once that's done, they'll have to find a way to contain the Necrons, presumably by trading favours with the Navy, Space Marines, or maybe even bringing the Eldar around to help with the siege.

I'm excited about this campaign idea because I feel like it's something that could be executed in the background, without interfering with the freedom and self determination that Rogue Trader is designed around. The Eldar ambushes and the gradual revelation of the artifact can both be included in whatever the traders happen to do, and the investigating and favor-trading are both things that the players are pretty much free to take their own path in.

 

Although any comments and suggestions from more experienced RT GMs would be appreciated, I'm still particularly unsure about

1. What capabilities should the artifact have, in terms of things to make it  A. appealing to the players, B. capable of spreading corruption on a massive scale, and C. really tricky to get rid of (Since the Eldar won't hunt the players if they just go "Oh no! It's cursed!" and throw it out the airlock)

2. How do I express to the players (who are largely new to 40k) the scale of the Necron threat, to encourage them to obtain as many resources as they can to combat it?

3. How precisely the Eldar interference should manifest- A Corsair raider? Warp Spider infiltrators? Ranger snipers whenever they go planetside?

 

 

I am not an experience RT game master, but I am an experienced GM. So do with that what you will.

The Eldar hate Chaos as much as the Imperium does. The Eldar of the Expanse, according to the Warp Storm RT adventure series, have more reason to hate Chaos than most! How about a very large deposit (1000's ?) of soul stones on the Hive World, or a cluster of far seer soul stones, maybe in a (void) shipwreck in the planet's oceans? That might be something the Eldar would court the powers of Chaos over. You could just cut out the middle man, however, and have the Eldar awaken the Necron on the Hive World directly to distract the Imperium's attention away from a major Eldar excavation site. That defeats your wish of having a Chaos artifact and cult, however.

Other suggestions:

1) I recommend making the artifact unwieldy enough so that a single person can't carry it around inconspicuously. Maybe it is very large and heavy, maybe it makes constant loud wailing, weeping noises or exudes a strong stench of blood, smoke or sulfur? This way you have some control over its use by explorers. A.) Dedicate it to a particular chaos god and its powers follow: Tzeentch = a stable warp gate to somewhere important, Nurgle = Can cure / inflict any disease or perform resurrections, Slaanesh = Makes those nearby immune to fear or inflicts them horrible / pleasurable hallucinations (which are addictive?) and Khorne = makes nearby people belligerent driving them to berzerker rages. A good way to make ownership of the artifact enticing is by giving skill or combat bonuses directly to those who own it. For instance, an artifact to Tzeentch might give the navigator an +15% to Navigation: Warp tests. B. Corruption on a large scale is up to you. You can just say that everyone within a few hundred meters starts to change over a period of time. It could be hours, days, weeks or years. C. Making it large / cumbersome will keep it difficult to get rid of; if it's a 5m stone obelisk that weighs 3 tons . . .

2) This is a hard one. A new group of RT players might just abandon the planet and never look back (until it's too late, perhaps). I would recommend the hive world with more than one hive, each densely populated. Relate, while they are staying Hive B, about how Hive A was completely destroyed in a week (without the use of orbital weapons). That's 15 billion souls- dead! I'm not sure how you could appeal to flighty types, so that they stick around and fight. Maybe having the planet be the rogue trader's home world? That way a large percentage of the group's profit rating might be directly at stake.

3) I don't have much to suggest here. If keeping with my idea of an excavation site, I'd probably have a handful of warlocks and just plain old guardians and maybe a couple of wraithguard to protect the "diggers".

I'm not sure I can think of a plausible reason that the Eldar would try to attack the players (other than just being Eldar). It seems just as reasonable that the Eldar would contact the explorers directly and tell them about the artifact, so that the party would uncover it and bring about the Necron infestation themselves, which may also be a reason they would want / try to stop it.

 



#3 susanbrindle

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 01:33 AM

Warmaster Picklehauber said:

The Eldar hate Chaos as much as the Imperium does. The Eldar of the Expanse, according to the Warp Storm RT adventure series, have more reason to hate Chaos than most! How about a very large deposit (1000's ?) of soul stones on the Hive World, or a cluster of far seer soul stones, maybe in a (void) shipwreck in the planet's oceans? That might be something the Eldar would court the powers of Chaos over. You could just cut out the middle man, however, and have the Eldar awaken the Necron on the Hive World directly to distract the Imperium's attention away from a major Eldar excavation site. That defeats your wish of having a Chaos artifact and cult, however.

 

@The Eldar: I figure that their hatred for Chaos is precisely *why* they'd want to use it as a cat's paw. Attacking the Necrons would kill Necrons, but tricking Chaos into doing it kills Daemons and Necrons. Possibly even there's a specific Greater Daemon attached to the artifact that the Eldar would like to see torn to bits by Gauss blasts.

 

I like the idea of having it be large and cumbersome. I was originally going to do a staff or something, but a giant glowing monolith sounds terrific. I think it has to be a Slaanesh artifact, then, because Tzeentch is nobody's cat's paw, and if I go with Nurgle then I have a giant glowing monolith that makes zombies and we're just playing Dead Space. I think I like the idea of a Slaanesh artifact that gives perception bonuses, heightens each sensation. It seems like a relatively unhorrifying way to corrupt.

The Eldar attack the PCs because they have the artifact, and being rogue traders, have no intention of dropping on the hive world and starting a cult, which means the Eldar need to reclaim the artifact and find a new cult leader to act as cat's paw.



#4 Cryhavok

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 05:46 AM

Another reason the eldar might do something like this is if luring chaos there would distract them from attacking a world that the eldar actually care about. It wouldn't be the first time they do something like this either. Fro them it would be like killing 3 birds with one stone (chaos, necrons, and humans).

As to the artifact itself: D&D has cursed items that once acquired were rather difficult to rid yourself of. You could simply make the artifact like that, in that they must make saves just to consider the possibility of ridding themselves of it. Another example of such a thing would be the one ring from lord of the rings. Another way you could handle it, is if the artifact followed the players. It just decides it likes them so no matter how they try to get rid of it, it just reappears in their vicinity. Trust me when I say that being stalked by an inanimate object can seriously mess with a players mind, hehe.



#5 memespawn

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 02:17 PM

To be fair, Tzeentch seems to be totally OK with schemes & plots & backstabbing going on, even if it appears to go against what seem to be good conditions for it.

Tzeentch cares not from where the schemes flow, so long as they flow!






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