Something my friends and I always thought wierd is that when a PC performs a ship action that is not associated with their assigned role they are supposedly instructing an NPC how to do it, like a micromanaging boss. I know the reason why this is, so the players are always directly involved and can use their skills, but it's odd to justify roleplaywise.
Que some discussion and we had some ideas that I'd like to get some input on from people with more play experience than us. Not all of these are to be implemented neccessarily but maybe some combination could be a representation of independent crew-officers while remaining playable.
- The players can't perform an extended action not related to their ship role (see Into the Storm).
- They also cannot perform any manouver or shooting action unless they are the Master Helmsman or Master of Ordnance.
- If a player want to perform an action not related to their role they will have to order the assigned officer to do it as thus roll against crew rating instead.
The crew will could possibly still be limited in the number of actions they can before as described in the sidebar on p.214 of Rogue Trader.
I know that the players will be weakened by having to rely on crew rating for a lot of rolls but so do enemies and other NPCs so it might not make them too underpowered. Still, to balance this out a bit the players could get all ship role-bonuses, since logically all ships should have these staffed. Possibly not having some (or all) bonuses so that players have the option of acquiring skilled officers before they get the bonuses (maybe even a short side venture to say, convince a skilled but retired Guard officer to become Master of Arms who not only grants the bonus but also counts as Command +10 making the roll during boarding actions easier).
What are your thoughts on this?