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Luthor Harkon

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    Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany
  1. Luthor Harkon

    To chase or not to chase...

    Thanks for all the helpful replies. I remember the IH rules, maybe I try them. I understand and appreciate the experience of people in the forum that actually wielded guns. The heaviest gun I ever wileded was a super soaker back in the early nineties. Waht remains a problem is the use of melee weapons though, but this is slmost another topic. Because charging is only half as fast as running means, that you will never be able to reach* someone of your speed, that is running away (*reaching = hitting/grappling or whatver is needed to stop the opponent). Maybe running as fast as someone fleeing (and reaching his position thereby) should mean you entered melee, so that, when he runs (instead of disengaging) again in his turn, you get a free attack.
  2. Luthor Harkon

    Influence and Subtlety

    Nimsim, my god, we may have found The One. Behold, an old RPGer who, rather than looking back on the mechanics of yore through the rosy tint of nostalgia, recognizes that game systems have progressed, that mechanics can be made better and that the cruft of the past is best left... in the past. Mirabile visu. I want to quote this for infinity. Well, I am not a native speaker so I most probably do not grasp the full amount of your cynism, but it is because I am such an old fart and RPGer that I wonder that new RPGs are full of such nonsense. Back when I started GMing, RPGs just had the most basic of rules. Look at WFRP 1st ed., you won't find such overburdened mechanics and rules in that book. I think it is great that mechanics in RPGs progressed over the years, but that sort of progression is more like the progression of a proliferating tumor. The chapter just after subtlety (disposition?) is even worse. It is as if written by a 14 year old fantasy card game playing über-nerd on crack...
  3. Dear all, Am I right having difficulties handling chases with the rules as written? My PCs are often in situations where either they or their opponents flee and the respective other party giving chase. The rules as written are rather not suited for that kind of situation. Having each other’s turn in sequence is one problem, but not the main one and certainly not one easy to get rid of. The main problem in my view is, that the moment one (N)PC runs away at full speed (i.e. running (or even using the Sprint talent)), it is almost impossible for another one to catch him, let alone do something like striking with a melee weapon or shooting after him (considering all participants have (more or less) the same Move allowance). The moment one participant decides to shoot, he normally is out of the match as he can only do a half move, which is normally six times slower than the one running (let alone sprinting). Striking with a Melee weapon is normally not possible either as a Charge action is only half as fast as Running, so you will normally never reach your opponent to be in striking distance. The problem as I see it is that it is not possible to shoot (or strike) on the run as done in most movies. Thus the really cinematic situations of chases are simply not taking place in 40K it seems… Any opinions? Thanks in advance!
  4. Luthor Harkon

    Influence and Subtlety

    Thank you all for your helpful anwers! There are plenty of mechanics in plenty of RPGs that are irrelevant for a good GM. Thing is, a good GM doesn't need that much in the way of rules (though they may want them - that's a different matter). A lot of rules and advice is intended for inexperienced and bad GMs - the kind of people that need the help. Th bigger issue is that it's having these bad or inexperienced GMs spend precious time and resources tracking a mechanically fiddly system with little to no mechanical impact. This was an issue since the first beta that FFG never bothered to address. The subtlety mechanic is poorly implemented, unfortunately. It has a bunch of rules on how to affect subtlety, but then no guidance on what subtlety does. It would be fine if te system was abstracted in implementation AND effect or mechanical in implementation AND effect, but subtlety is a bad combination of mechanical implementation as abstract effect. The worst example of the subtlety system is that big table listing example narratives of how players are acting at each subtlety level. This of course ignores that minor behaviors are what actually effect subtlety and rather than general behavior. The subtlety system is a mess, and I have nothing but criticism for FFG publishing it. @cpm: That was my impression as well. It is good to see that I am not alone with this stand. @N0-1: Yes, of course, but this argument sort of always applies. It still irks me after more than 20 years of GMing, that brand new RPG systems have such useless stuff in them. It is as if the authors have no idea how their rules should work in a de facto roleplaying session. It is so theoretical it hurts, especially as it seems to have taken some time and creativity to write up this...nonesense... @Nimsim: Absolutely! Even moreso as these inexperienced will surely still struggle with the basic rules and the basic jobs of a GM, which will burden them even more...
  5. Dear all, I have some issues with the Influence and Subtlety mechanics. The game I GM has always been defined heavily by these themes, especially the latter one, as our games are mainly undercover investigations. I sort of kept track of the group’s subtlety/overtness in my mind and reacted (through NPCs) accordingly. The moment I saw the new rulebook had whole chapters together with game mechanics about these themes, I was really excited. Though now, after a couple of games, the whole excitement is sort of gone. In my opinion the mechanics are burdensome and often too abstract. A bad combination if you ask me. I can understand the need for sometimes burdensome and at the same time realistic mechanics as well as a combination of easy to go and abstract rules. The Subtlety mechanic alone is awkward and it is in my view absurd that a change of planet has such low consequences in changing the (especially low) subtlety. Honestly, in 40K the change of planet or even sub-sector is huge and many planets have problems in getting even any essential news from off-planet, let alone gossip of a bunch of people acting weird somewhere down-hive on a 20 billion citizen planet on the other side of the sector. Furthermore, there is more than a whole page dealing alone with the option of acolytes trying to assess their own Subtlety score. How important is that? Which group will ever do this? It dissolves into roll-play instead of role-play seeing how many dices (mostly hidden) I have to roll. My players would think I am nuts, when I am rolling dozens of dices behind my screen throughout the whole session. Let alone the bookkeeping for that… While I like the Influence characteristic, I think it is difficult to handle in daily operations. Maybe I have to get used to it, but I still sometimes wonder whether the players really have to roll or whether it is too mundane to let them roll. I think it is weird for example to roll influence, when a player is trying to get hold of ammunition for his Autopistol within a huge hive world. That should be rather easy. I miss how it correlates with the time it takes to “search” for such an item as well as any effect the size (and type) of the world might have. Furthermore, I can understand that looking for Bolt ammunition can have an effect on the group’s subtlety; I cannot understand how a failure to acquire it can lower a characters influence. I know Influence is an abstract figure, but not being able to acquire Bolt ammunition in a certain hive district on a certain hive world should not lower a person’s influence score as such. It does not impair his reputation or his network sector-wide. What mostly irks me is the whole dice rolling and thus the heavily random effect it often has. Any opinions? Thanks in advance!
  6. Luthor Harkon

    SQoD - Converting 1e characters to 2e

    At first we really thought Seeker would be fitting, especially because the Arbitrator in question had the "Warden of the Divisio Immoralis" alternate rank and chose the Arbitrator path along Intelligencer, Magistrate and not the on first sight more martially minded Proctor etc. But on closer look Seeker is too non-martial minded for this character (and Judge Dredd in my view). At second view we thought about Desperado, because the Arbitrator character mainly wields pistols and a few melee weapons; furthermore the Desperado also has some social and Fel stuff. But then the Arbitrator character is really not the Agility and Finesse type, so Desperado was not an option either. In the end we indeed chose Assassin (he has the Mortiurge alternate rank as well) even though it somehow is awkward, as he is far from subtile. In fact he really is like the Judge Dredd stereotype and it not worked with Seeker or Desperado for us (i.e. highly martial (medium and close range), highly perceptive (e.g. scrutiny, awareness), really tough (body and mind). The Tech-Priest in question was the other problem, because he was far from the Sage type (i.e. Knowledge guy). HE was more the stereotypical Tech-Priest in the sense of being an Artisan and technician. He had great Tech-Use (of course), Trade (Technomat, Armourer and Wright), high score in Demolition as well as medicae. So for the more practical minded Tech-Priest 2e is difficult while the more sagely or more spiritual Tech-Priest is easy to make.
  7. Luthor Harkon

    SQoD - Converting 1e characters to 2e

    Well, I would say it worked OK. It sort of worked better than converting WFRP 1ed. to WFRP 2 ed. (which we did like 10 or 15 years ago). At the beginning I thought about getting rid of all talents (and skills) that were not part of 2 ed. But then I realized how much character some talents gave to the PC and how much history and great story were linked to some talents (e.g. the Arbitrator's "Last Killer Standing", the Guardsman's Dual Strike against a Slaught Destructor etc.). Then I realized that most of them were not in any way overpowered or would not be a problem with the new mechanics. As said, the equipment and weapon stuff (mostly from IH) were not a problem at all.
  8. Luthor Harkon

    Transit time

    Depending on the ship (and other circumstances like the Navigator, the warp, the GM etc.) I would say somewhere in between a few months to a few years.
  9. Luthor Harkon

    Chirurgeon .. what is that about?

    Maybe also Adeptus Arbites Verispex.
  10. Luthor Harkon

    SQoD - Converting 1e characters to 2e

    My group just converted their characters. They got equivalent talents where possible (e.g. Adamantium Faith instead of Fearless) and kept talents that looked OK (not overpowered) and fitted into the current mechanics (e.g. Rapid Reaction, Lightning Refelxes and even Dual Shot/Strike). We got rid of Skills and/or merged them according to the 2e rules (e.g. Climb and Swim became Athletics; Drive became Operate etc.) The conversion of the groups Psyker was a little more difficult, but we simply chose equivalent powers and everything above within the respective psyker tree and we got rid of all Minor Powers. A problem remained as the Psyker was mainly a Telepath, but was far from the needed Fel for a couple of Powers in 2e. We none the less looked how the character would be made nowadays. What Apitudes they would have, so that the players can also buy any of the new talents and know the "price". That was easy in some cases (e.g. Hive Worlder - Outcast - Assassin or Feral Worlder - Imperial Guard - Warrior), but more difficult for our Arbitrator (Imperial World became Shrine World for him and as profession we chose Assassin in the end) and Tech-Priest (we chose Chirurgeon as profession in the end). Weapons and most equipment are compatible with the 2e mechanics most of the time.
  11. Luthor Harkon

    Skills and Talents we're missing

    I miss Rapid Reaction and Lightning Reflexes as does our gruops Assassin. I also wonder that Dual Strike and Dual Shot are gone, they added flavour and a tactcial option against high T opponents (without having to use heavy weapons).
  12. Luthor Harkon

    Witchfinder Rykehuss' retinue - input needed...

    Hey guys, thank you all for the helpful input. I have the impression some are too strict in their vision how Imperial planets can look like. Of course there are the stereotypical feral, hive, feudal, mining worlds, but in my view there is of course everything in between. OK, the Feral world is Dusk (the planetary datafax I made follows at the end). The mentioned town is called Iborian and is the second biggest population centre on Dusk (on its main continent that is). The major city Asabmom has a size of almost 3 million. (See planetary datafax). The planet is (in my campaign) heavily based on Kenya in the 1920ies and the two major cities are based on Mombasa and Nairobi (linked by a railway). The town I mentioned is actually the counterpart of Nairobi. As I said all is mainly based on the 1920ies (somehow fitting as I play an adaption of Call of Cthullus Masks of Nyaralothep), but sometimes also inspired by more modern times (auto taxis etc.). It has a basic sewage system in the central area of the town, but not in the outer regions and the slums. News mainly travel by mouth within the town. Personal vox systems are presnt, but only for the richer and almost exclusively for the off-worlder and/or settler population. Social system: Again heavily inspired by Kenya of 1920. Off-worlders are common, but a clear minority. Off-worlders and the Adepta personnel lives mainly in the cities central areas. The response to the Imperium within Iborian is well enough. Beyond the town it is a different matter… In town we have a single slightly burned-out but experienced Arbites officer (whose formal rank is even Marshall), two Adeptus Adminstarum Adepts (who mainly record any trading activities), a single “official” Ministorum cleric (from off-world) who also acts as a doctor besides dozens of local “lay-priests”. Besides this Adptus personnel there are a couple of off-worlders with more or less important functions. A retired Imperial Guard colonel as well as the leading officer of the local PDF (the Dusk Rifles) besides many more. There are about no vendors of “high tech goods” in town (there is no Mechanicus presence in town). A rich native in town might own a gun, but most can only afford primitive weapons like bows and crossbows. There are very few cars (mainly sort of taxis) and a single gasoline station in town. The Dusk Rifles (i.e. the PDF) are armed with single shot (I think they are called Steadholder in the Inquisitors Handbook) rifles and feature a few durable half-tracks. The Inquisitor takes control of the city by force. The only “official” he will contact through one of his subordinates (and a couple of armsmen) is the PDF captain; mainly by intimidation… The rest he will simply ignore (partly out of arrogance). That said, we had a session in the meantime and you won’t believe what my players did. They simply walked towards the landing gun-cutter and then let themselves manhandled onboard… Alwas expect the unexpected. What the f***... PLANETARY DATAFAX: DUSK Population: Roughly estimated 4 Million Tithe Grade: Solutio Tertius Special Notation: Malfian Sub-Sector, Calixis Sector, Segmentum Obscuros Geography/Demography: Wet; abiding planetary climate is mostly tropical and semi-tropical. The planet is constantly basked in a very low light. The climate means there are large varieties of fungus and even the native wildlife has evolved from fungal strands. Pre-Imperial traders built the metropolis Asabmom as a merchant city and trading center before the Angevin Crusade entered the Calyx Expanse. About 3 Million people live here around the initial space port that lies well defended on a rock surrounded by huge chasms, though there has never been an accurate census on Dusk. The planet is home to a mixture of surviving colonists, outcasts and wanderers, scattered over isolated villages and plantations. Beyond the cities and the Imperial-owned plantations, life of the natives continues much as it has for millennia. The tribal cultures are stable and well adapted to the hostile planet. Striking is the high birth rate of psykers. Natives of Dusk are narrow-minded and highly superstitious. Sudden madness, trauma, feuds, strange phenomena, morbid obsessions and disappearances are simply accepted facts of daily life on Dusk. The people of Dusk act withdrawn and threatening, and their sense of humour is often macabre. In Asabmom, Low Gothic is generally spoken, outside of Asabmom and the few other towns, most natives know little or no Low Gothic. The common language on Dusk is a tribal dialect with a strong Low Gothic vocabulary. The planet has a great tradition of storytelling - grim, cautionary tales are told when storm and fog at the campfires, and contain some dark truth. Governmental Type: Dusk is mostly self administered, though it owes full allegiance to the Imperium, which oversees most foreign and Adeptus matters. Power remains concentrated in the Imperial Governor's hands; weak legislative and executive councils made up of official appointees were created about 200 years ago. The Imperial settlers were allowed to elect representatives to a legislative council and gained representation for themselves and minimized representation on the council for Dusk natives. The government appointed an Administratum Adept to represent interests of the natives on the Council. Planetary Governor: Currently the High Commissioner Thorne Coryndon of the Administratum is considered Planetary Governor of Dusk Adept Presence: Low; low Adeptus Administratum and Adeptus Ministorum and very low Adeptus Arbites presence. Almost exclusively based in Asabmom and the few larger towns on Dusk. Military: Two under-strength regiments of Imperial Guard garrison Dusk. There also exist over ten-thousand paramilitary enforcers, usually natives or early settlers led by Imperial officers. Trade/Economy/Addendum: Dusk is one of the most infamous Feral Worlds within the Calixis Sector and has a sinister reputation. The fertile planet was always viewed as an ideal starting point for further development of the remote region of space in which it is located, and was the target of repeated efforts to establish mass agriculture. Unfortunately all attempts for colonization since the days of the founding of the Calixis Sector failed catastrophically.
  13. Luthor Harkon

    Getting Players to Spend Fate Points

    Everyone I've ever played with has only ever spent them on the +D5 Wounds. I don't think the utility of any of the other uses (with the possible exception of re-rolling a crucial Dodge or Parry) outweighs being able to get life saving +D5 Wounds.
  14. Dear all, I plan to have my (quite high-level) Acolytes encounter Witchfinder Rykehuss + Retinue once again. Rykehuss is some sort of re-appearing nemesis for PCs. In the past he was not more of a nuisance. Mainly because the PC acolytes were either not important enough for his direct intervention or because the PCs were in a more or less secure surrounding (Tricorn, their Inq in vicinity etc.). After a serious confrontation within the Tricorn, which did not became open warfare due to the timely intervention of Inquisitor Marr, Rykehuss became openly hostile towards the PC Acolytes and is now, partly triggered through the (Phaenonite subverted) Tyrantine Cabal, more or less on the hunt after them. To cut a long story short: The PCs are just coming back to a bigger town/city (800,000 inhabitants) on a Feral world, where they had stopped a cataclysmic event by a chaos cult only a few days ago. After being only a few more days in town to lick wounds, re-supply and plan moving off-planet, Rykehuss will make an entrance by landing a gun-cutter in the middle of the town. He will be accompanied by a pair of Arco-Flagellants and his 4 Throne Agents (all clerics of different shades) as well as a pair of Cherubim carrying banners/parchments and playing ecclesiarchical chorals. Being not the subtle person, he will more or less take over the town by force and inquisitorial authority. The question is: Who should accompany Rykehuss besides these few of his inner cadre? I need some “rank and file” mooks. I could imagine something like lowly Frateris Militia or even elite Maccabean Janissaries or anything in between. Do you guys have any good and fitting idea? Maybe even how Rykehuss should proceed in finding the PCs. Thanks a lot in advance!
  15. Luthor Harkon

    Judgement comes to us all...

    No, he had not a plot function. He was part of a “side-quest”, which was more a red herring than anything else. That’s basically why he was such a nuisance to the PCs (and especially the Tech-Priest); he cost time and resources without being of any use. Insanity is not really an option for me in this case. The Tech-Priest (and three others out of five PCs…) has the Jaded talent anyway… Moral greys are basically what my Dark Heresy setting is all about. The Commissar will make an appearance for sure, though his sphere of influence/jurisdiction on the PCs will be limited anyway. Though those PCs not under the umbrella of a mighty Adeptus (i.e. the Assassin and the Imperial Guardsman) might get a serious interrogation by him…