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van Riebeeck

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Everything posted by van Riebeeck

  1. I have a small question pertaining to ship building in the Calixis sector. As far as I can find, the main construction capability of the sector is around the great orbitals of Perinetus. Besides this, I expect that there will be quite a few hive worlds that can construct ships, Imperial Navy stations like Port Wrath might have a limited production capacity and the Lathes will construct their specialized craft (although the odd gravity of their system might mean that it is a far from ideal place to build your basic Imperial ships. Any ideas on this. Feedback is highly appreciated.
  2. I have touched on this problem in a previous post although oddly enough I can't find it. The problem is indeed the deletion of the second attack craft turn, which is taken at the end of the enemies turn in BFG, effectively giving attack craft two moves for every single ship move. This applies as well to torpedoes, by the way, which suffer from the same speed problem and cannot hope to overtake a fast raider in the raw rules. My solution to this problem is twofold. If there are only two sides in the fight, just use BFG rules and move side A's attack craft and torpedoes again after side B moved its ship and attack craft( so you get a actions of Ship A; Craft A; Ship B; Craft B; Craft A; Ship A; Craft A; Craft B; Ship B; Craft B; craft A and on and one and on...) or if I wish utter simplicity/there are more sides in the game I just end each turn with an additional attack craft/torpedo turn. This last solution has one great disadvantage in that it gives a huge advantage at the last ship to move if it fires torpedoes, doubling their direct range.
  3. I should scour the other RP sites more thoroughly, for this gem made my day! Great fun.
  4. There are quite a few points to consider: - On the RP side offspring is too often neglected. It is one of the basest of human drives that player characters almost never seem to exhibit. Understandable from the gaming point of view, but if you truly go in character this question should be adressed. All living humans are confronted in one way or another with this problem and so should all characters. - Once you have this question of offspring popping up, the next question appears: What are your hopes for your offspring? Do you as a Rogue Trader wish to see them following in your path of glory and derring do? - After which we can enter into a more rational field of power and politics. What is your Warrant of Trade? What is its goal? And what are your goals? If you are a true paragon of the Imperium only interested in increasing the Rule of Man, you will look quite differently at your heirs than you would as a potentate hoping to carve out its own dominion in the lawless expanse. Same goes for the rules under which the Warrant was granted. Is it to pass through direct descendance? Can you choose amongst your descendants? Can you adopt? And who choses and confirms said heir? Endless permutations of all the above are possible. - Age, oh yes, quite rightly, age, with all the rejuvenat posibilities that might get akward. But I think that a bit of age would be wise on a Rogue Trader, certainly considering the fact that the wisdom conferred by experience is not diminished by the increasing decrepitude of old age in WH40K (at least for those with the means and up to a certain extent). - Combining all of this I would as a Rogue Trader choose to adopt by heir from my wider offspring, a bit comparable to the adopted Emperors in Rome. This gives you a very good shot at getting the best one of the flock. But the obvious problem is infighting. Or do I see a perfect start of a RT campaign appearing....
  5. And never forget the importance of remaining useful. An Inquisitor might - with regret if he or she is a good Imperial - feel that it is necessary to ensure that a tool that has seen too much can't corrupt the rest of the Imperium, but should hesitate if that tool is still useful or even vital. For as long as the Imperium truly needs you, you have a good chance of not being sacrificed on the pire of the Great Cause.
  6. Don't forget the Painboy. No good crew is complete without a good MadDoc.
  7. Or an all Ork crew. Not sure how long such a campaign would last, but I am sure it would ensure some hilarious moments.
  8. I wonder if knowing about Rubric Marines isn't enough to attract a load of unwanted attention...
  9. Just say no. If he is a good player (both IC and OOC) he will understand and come up with another cool and interesting concept. Playing a Xenos character in an Imperial game is never a right, but at most a request one can make at the GM and the other players, as it has the potential to cause massive disruption in the campaign and within the group dynamics.
  10. I'd approach the situation with RP. If said characters don't give a jot about innocent bystanders and happily fry them with the bad guys, then you can unleash the full wrath of a (semi-)civilised society on them: lawyers might file charges that not even the Inquisition can callously duck. Vigilantes might take revenge. Or their Inquisition superiors might take notice about such behaviour and move in harsly to stop it. And if all of that doesn't work: not minding whether or not your flamer kills innocents you are sworn to protect would bring insanity and corruption. If their minds start to reel under the terror they wreak, they might reconsider.
  11. I would say any oath made to Xenos is null and void under Imperial Law, so hardly a threat to a Rogue Trader dynasty. Obviously, this doesn't mean one can break once word to Eldar with impunity. But then they would hardly react with any legal means to mon keigh oathbreakers now would they?
  12. Indeed, such chartered companies (many of which had full sovereignty) are another good comparison. The bottom line is that a Warrant of Trade it is an inefficient but easy and quick way for the Lords of Terra to harness the resources of the countless worlds at their disposal. So it wil be used, without going in all the political (and other advantages) that can be sought in giving powerful individuals even more power.
  13. If we take an historical tack to the discussion, we might compare the Imperial Warrants of Trade with Privateers of old: a private person entitled to wage war on behalf of his nation. It was a perfect way for a state to quickly and cheaply (at least for the treasury) raise large amounts of ship that were eminently suited for raiding hostile trade, which could seriously squeeze an opponents economy. Privateers would not win battles or take cities, but the continuing attrition they inflicted was very effective indeed. When we translate this to the Imperium of Man, there is a logic to it. This massive conglomeration of worlds isn't an easily centralized unity of which all resources can be used to maximum efficiency by a central government. Even within a sector or subsector this is unthinkable. Mobilization for war within the Imperium is massive - for the Imperium is massive - but ponderous and inefficient. The sheer distances, sketchy communications and decentralization of power make this unavoidable. Within this context, it again becomes useful to employ such privateers: mighty indivuals with their own powerbase and wealth, all of which can be harnessed relatively quickly and easily by the Imperium without it impacting to much on the Imperial Navy, Imperial Guard and Adptus Astartes. If their missions are especially important, they might get supported but the Imperial outlay needed - as opposed to that of the Rogue Trader - is a fraction of what would be needed for a real campaign or crusade. Would this be an effective way for a centralized state to use the resources at its disposal? No, most defintely not. There is a good reason privateers last showed up in the 19th century and disappeared once states became so efficient that they could harness all the resources at their disposal in case of war. But would this be effective for the Imperium? Yes, most certainly, even for the Emperor himself. His conquests were not just wars for he was the first to try and win over human world by diplomacy and politics. His early Imperium was not a unified, centralized state (hence the Emperor turning to the webway) that could use all the means of the newly incorporated planets at will. So what better way to use all this unused potential power than by creating Warrants of Trade?
  14. First and foremost: I love the idea. Anything that increases the storytelling of a RPG is in my opinion a big bonus and convoluted marriage strategies certainly fal in that category. So as far as the game goes, it should work. Secondly, as far as the mechanics go, this depends a bit on the GM. In a classical White Wolf game, family members would rank as retainers and allies and you could allocate points to this 'resource'. In Rogue Trader you might include it in the backgrounds, to be bought with XP (at character creation). But you obviously could devise other ways of solving this practical issue. As far as I am concerned, a GM can always add disadvantages to balance out to obvious advantages. The RT's cousin would indeed be a perfect candidate for marriage, but he most definitely has his own will and ideas. For one thing is certain: family members should never be mere pawns in the game. They do have their own agenda, which can become very interesting indeed. Finally, I do think we can categorically state that a Rogue Trader is by his very nature a 'Peer of the Realm' and as such a member of the higher Imperial nobility. We could well compare him - in medieval terms - to a duke with the unique prerogative of going beyond the borders of the Empire to expand its reach. That makes him a very eligible partner for the highest planetary and sector spanning families. Furthermore, what family would not like to have an alliance by blood to someone who can raise fleets and armies? However, the other party members are of a different order. For starters, you can scratch the Navis Nobilite and the Astropath Transcendant. The Navis is in all likelyhood a part of his own dynasty and the marriage policy of the Navigators are a whole chapter on themselves. The Astropath stands apart from the rest of the Imperial social universe. Whatever he might have been at birth, now he is wedded to his fate. For comparable reasons, the servants of the Adeptus Mechanicus and the Adeptus Ministrorum would not makeideal marriage candidates (barring exceptions). Which leaves you with the 'normal' human retainers of the RT. Here it becomes a bit more complex. For a lot depends on their birth. If they descend from noble blood themselves it is easy: they are noble (although possibly of a different dynasty, making things again more complex). If they were not....well, their acts and experience might have raised them to greater glory. Or they might have received a title from a rightful authority (which even could be the RT). But nothing is assured and depending on what they play, they might still not fit into civilised company, whatever renown their deeds might have garnered.
  15. Or a plain old fashioned heart failure, massive radiation dose due to a space suit mishap or slipping in the shower. Anything that might kill a outwardly healthy man in his 40-ties or 50-ties in our universe could affect a patriarch, even with rejuvenation treatments.
  16. I loved playing my navis. The campaign in which he featured is sadly 'in highly suspended animation' but he was one of my best characters: doomed to face the most terrible darkness in the greater service of mankind and nearly certain that in the end he would end up shunned by his fellow humans. As such, he tried to stay untouched as long as possible, because he dreaded the moment when he would no longer be able to sample the pleasures of normal humans. I dare even say that it made him the most humane character of the party. Where the rest had no qualms in setting a flight deck on fire to 'solve' a problem with loyal household servants who just might have seen to much, he defended his people to the hilt. So where I agree that Navis Nobilite will accept the inevitability of mutations, I do not see why they would not strive to avoid them. A far greater problem was exposing my navis to adventures, as SKoNi pointed out. Intrigue and social play are obviously not the problem. You can revel in those as a scion of the Major Houses. But stomping around on unknown planets filled with who knows what dangers? You can plead curiosity, boredom, the need of your special skills. But in the end I found it difficult to continue to come up with good enough reasons. Why would my civilized noble with a highly developed sense of duty and a keen knowledge of his own vital role on the ship risk himself in such expeditions? Still, I loved playing him.
  17. Errant Knight: I can only agree. The fact that Space Marines Chapters can never field massive forces obviously does not mean they should not be used massed! Even more so the vital supporting specialist, who will obviously never get the fluff attention they should get if those Thunderhawks are to keep flying. But logistic support is hardly 'sexy' enough to get the attention it deserves in serious military history, let alone fantasy writing.
  18. A dear, the more one thinks about it, the rarer Space Marines get. A 1000 chapters each no more than 1000 Astartes strong to cover more than a millions worlds? That's not even a chapter for each sector or a Space Marine per planet. Errant Knight: I fully agree with you on the vulnerability of the Soviet airborne armor. They would be highly vulnerable against any serious opposition. But then, I have my doubts about the whole Soviet airborne concept. It drained the best officers and men from the tank and all-arms divisions while its usefulness in a NATO versus Warsaw Pact confrontation would have been limited. I just don't see how the Warsaw Pact air forces could have gained sufficient air control and air defense suppression to use them in any numbers. Furthermore, the huge airlift needed to transport this armor comes at a high price. Rather than a full battalion, you might be happy to drop a small company, and so forth. This company has increased firepower, far better tactical mobility and even some armor protection (against splinters and infantry weapons, but that is a great advantage), but less combat power than said battalion. Most importantly of all, it has far less staying power. But this is again a naughty digression. Let's focus on the rare Space Marines here, who would never be used as callously as the USSR has used its paratroopers.
  19. While I do not doubt the fact that Astartes excel at close combat where their superlative skills, superior weaponry and power armor give them an immense tactical advantage, such fights are by their very nature fights of attrition. In my eyes, the last is exactly what you should try to prevent as an Astartes commander, for attrition is the bane of a Space Marines chapter. Every single marine that is lost takes decades to replace: you have to find the right recruits, introduce the genetic modifications and the extensive training that makes an Astartes the superlative soldier that he is. Serious losses to a company - or worse, a chapter - will render this unit combat ineffective for a long while. Or let me rephrase that last sentence, will force a commander to retire said company or chapter, for the destruction of such a unit does not bear thinking off. Now there will obviously be cases where need prevails over caution. If a summoning of a major daemon is undertaken, when a crucial manufactorum of the Mechanicus is under the threat of imminent destruction or when traitor legions are banging on the doors of Terra, yes, in those cases Space Marine losses will become a moot point. Then speed becomes of the essence and the Astartes will be given their moment to shine in a moment of blazing self immolating glory. But if I have to take a rebellious Hive in some sub-sector and am slowly but surely grinding my way to its inner core with my Imperial Guard army of millions, that Space Marine company that has been graciously committed to my support will be placed in reserve, only to be used if I spot that one chance not to be missed to kill the rebellious governor in his deep bunker complex or that fleeting opportunity to knock out the rebellious power supply. I can easily replace the 100.000 guardsmen I lose during this battle. But if that company Astartes blunders into an artillery barrage and is blown to pieces, their loss is near irreplaceable.
  20. Airborne armor is quite feasible these days: every Soviet/Russian style airborne force is based on it. The main problem is that for the strategic delivery of airborne armor one needs an airfield of sorts, now that gliders are a thing of the past. On the operational/tactical scale, helicopters can do the job. A good example is found during the Ogaden war in 1978. A Cuban mechanized airborne brigade sized force was used in a classical pincer movement. Highly interesting stuff, but relatively little known in the West.
  21. Yes, the Armada had its logistic problems, exacerbated by the absence of a good port on the North Sea Coast where it could take refuge and take the dread Army of Flanders aboard. A good example of what happens if you don't think the basic logistical needs through. The Soviets might get some more kudos for their landing operations though. Take the landings on the Kerch peninsula in december '41: this was a well executed independent operation (although part of the wider Winter offensive) that achieved important results. While not on the scale of Overlord or Iceberg, they are not to be underestimated. Russia has military history of which it can be justly proud: they defeated Napoleon's Grande Armée and the Wehrmacht. Quite the tally.
  22. As you are a first time GM, I would strongly advise against allowing a player to incarnate an Ork (or any Xenos for that matter). It will massively increase the stresses within the party and complicate any adventure you plan to play. If one of your players truly wishes to play something else and deserves it, allow him an abhuman. Ratlings, Ogryn or that rare surviving Squat can fit the bill without triggering the fear and loathing of Xenos that pervades Imperial culture.
  23. Indeed, a great discussion, both from the historical sense and from the Warhammer point of view. It even seems we are reading and thinking about each others answers! It made me think about less than ideal landing operations. The most obvious example that springs to mind is the Spanish Armada of 1588 and although English 'brilliance' in defeating it has been overrated (in fact the Armada managed to pass through the channel with minor losses and with its landing forces intact) it shows the folly of attempting an amphibious operation without establishing proper sea control first. During WW II there are some examples as well. Unternehmen Weserubung clearly shows us the dangers of undertaking a landing operation in the teeth of a superior fleet. The Germans managed to pull of the landing (although I should stress that there was no naval opposition worthy of the name during the landing phase itself) but payed heavily during the following British counterattacks. At the moment, I am trying to find an example of a truly callous landing attempt so my head is automatically turning towards the Eastern Front, but I fear I know too little of Soviet amphibious operations. The Kerch-Eltigen operation might fit the bill, but while these landings are indeed amphibious, they lack the 'naval' feel of landing operations over the high seas and seem to be better comparable to glorified river crossings.
  24. Space Marine armor seems indeed odd at the first glance, considering that the orbital/aerial mobility of Space Marines seems their main operational asset. Compared to the real world (and yes, I know this won't be a perfect comparison) this gives them an odd mix of gliderborne (drop pods bringing in formed units and heavier weapons but no redeployment) and airmobile (Thunderhawks compare nicely to Hinds on steroids) capabilities. Exploiting these to the fullest seems the wisest course during planetary operations, making Space Marines the troops of choice for high value raids and coups-de-main. Actions like the Ranger attack on Pointe du Hoc or the Airborne assault on the bridges over the Orne spring to mind. However, armor and airmobility can mix. While most Western airborne forces are almost completely infantry based, the USSR invested massively in the mechanization of its airborne forces. I have my doubts about the wisdom of this choice, as in my opinion the main limitation of airborne forces is its airlift and mechanized airborne forces demand far more airlift capability for a given force, but there can be no denial that the added protection, firepower and most of all mobility are a great tactical and operational bonus. Considering the small size of a Space Marine forces and its near limitless resources (Those Codices have to be 'interpreted' to make sense; only 20 Thunderhawks but 3 Battle Barges; laughable) airlift should be a commodity they have aplenty. This makes their armor more sensible. Basicly, Space Marines seem to have two chassis they can use, the Rhino and the Land Raider. The Rhino (and all the variants constructed on its chassis) seems to fulfill admirably the role of a relatively light armored vehicle that is quite easily transported by air (your BMD 1/2/3 or Sprut SD). The Land Raider seems very heavy for this airmobile role, but would fit perfectly as that near indestructible heavy hitting IFV/MBT crossbreed which a Space Marine company could use if it deployed in support of an Imperial Guard mechanized force. The latter role would not be their normal mission, but might still take place.
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