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Lone Pilgrim

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About Lone Pilgrim

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  • Birthday 03/20/1981

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    Regensburg, Bayern, Germany
  1. Please be so kind as to share your finished Death Cult with us - I'm sure everyone here would appreciate the inspiration
  2. Hehe, okay Lyn. I guess my group is playing a rather softened grimdark, I could not motivate them to get off their backsides and fight for a world where suffering is the apex of existence ^^ But of course, what you're saying makes perfect sense, he could be a bit on the shady side from the start. I'm under the impression most players of psykers tend to be fascinated by the prospect of demonic power. Which brings Wurstbrotjoe back to the start - to hell with his corruption points, let him have his dark pact if he thinks he can cope with it (muhaha!).
  3. I'm pretty sure your players will never sort through this mess If I was in your place, I'd simplify matters just a bit, but maybe your players are better at unraveling complex mysteries and like it that way. Interesting premise, in any case. As for which Chaos God, I'd suggest a Slaanesh cult as Lynata offered, but one that is not made up of the run-of-the-mill debauchees. Instead, they could be a very cold and focused bunch of murderers, ritually cutting themselves off from every other weak human emotion save the extasy of taking lives, which kinda becomes their sole pleasure and purpose. Hunters for a religiously motivated hunter's thrill... They could be an order of master assassins, bit like a dark and twisted version of the Moritat. Which makes them human and creepy at the same time, and serves as a disguise for the Chaos worshipping.
  4. Ah dammit I think I shot myself in the foot with that one. Since I figured that my acolytes would not be able to carry out their work without a suitable badge of authority (and I still think so), I just gave them one. Also, it's what their inquisitor would have done, cos for various reasons he's a bit over-protective of said acolytes and wants to give them every possible edge. Huh, that's what happens to new GMs I'm afraid. Alright, but as the damage is done (I can't reasonably deprive them of it now), I guess I'll just have to roll with it and try to teach them not to overdo it by means of the bad guys generally knowing where they are and what they are up to. No secrecy - no secret investigation. Sigh. But I will give the Sigil of Question a look, maybe I can perform damage control by at least limiting their authority. Thanks a lot, everyone, it has been very enlightening, as always on this forum.
  5. I like doomande's suggestion a lot. Especially since one should think that a sanctioned psyker with next to no corruption points would NOT cry out to a demon for help, but the Immortal Emperor, the one being that allowed him to continue existence, the pillar of his faith ect. - after all, isn't that what all the pain and suffering on Terra is about? And keep in mind that if his teammates are as far from corrupted as your psyker is, they might very well suspect what's going on and settle on executing him as a precaution if some strange warp things happen around him. To be silent of the implications for your campaign when one of the protagonists carries a demon around under his very skin... Since he DID call upon the warp for help, for whatever reason, yes, I'd have a demon answer his plea, but in the guise of something pure and chaste, so any witnesses report nothing short of a divine miracle that saved the Emperor's subject. But your psyker knows, oh he knows, what dark things he said staring at the face of death, and he might wonder about those strange dreams that have seized hold of him lately, about the sickness when praying, about the nagging desires to change things as they are... Plenty of opportunity for roleplaying here.
  6. Thanks for your input on the authority matter, friends. I guess I'll have to mentally toughen up my NPCs when dealing with the acolytes. I am no expert at all on 40k fluff, and the DH core rulebook is frustratingly vague in places - other than stating how terribly intimidating that organisation is to the average citizen, I've not found much concrete information. It took me ages to figure out what the inquisitorial Rosette actually is, and I've not heard the term Sigil of Queston ever before. I imagined the acolytes as some kind of FBI - if those guys appear at your doorstep in RL, you're probably not going to tell them to buzz off... In what way is a cognomen used? I thought it to be some kind of passport or ID, so not something that is scanned on a regular basis. Regarding Darcia, I settled on something different from my first approach to eliminate a few plotholes I had overlooked. Now she's actually been kidnapped by the opposition, who conveniently are working with my magnate who conveniently is in debt to the supervillain's evul guild. And since the acolytes have something the opposition wants, they'll use Darcia to lure them into a trap. That way, I can throw them some hints about who's hunting them and give them a fight to free the damsel in distress (hubbie will love it). About Greco Azarel, they don't exactly know why they are looking for him, nor who he is. In fact, they are following a breadcrumb trail to a hidden stash of direly needed data, and they only know that the information leading there has been encrypted and split up between three parties to keep it from falling into enemy hands - themselves, Darcia, Azarel. Now Azarel is an associate of the man who hid the data they are after, not someone they'd willingly choose to work with. Likewise, Darcia and Azarel only know that they have one part of a three-piece puzzle and might not be too keen on working with the other two parties.
  7. Luther Harkon, maybe I just read over it, but didn't the NPC they murdered have a plot-function of sorts? If so, it's pretty easy to show your players that killing him maybe wasn't the smartest idea: their work gets more difficult. Maybe he could have told them something that better prepared them for running into this cultist lair or what have you, I'm sure you can think of something. You get my meaning, just make it abundantly clear that shooting first and asking questions later might not be the best way for inquisitorial Akolytes, in their own professional interest. Since it obviously was a comprehensible in-character decision, I wouldn't opt for insanity and definitely not for corruption, but I think what you're planning with the investigator on their tracks is definitely appropriate. No consequences at all would, as Spacebaty pointed out, be simply boring. And yes, real humans are a bunch of sadists covered by a thin sugar icing of civilisation. Still, that fact does not relieve you or your duty as GM to set the mood at your gaming table. Roleplaying is a work of fiction, and it follows essentially the same rules for drama as more linear means of storytelling. So, if you (and your group) want an emotional backdrop of "life is cheap and the world is bad and hell we dont give a ****", fine, let them roll like this. If you're aiming for something more... refined, for moral greys, guilt, action, reaction, consequences (well, the Shakespearean stuff basically), then no, don't let them get away with this. Of course, just my personal 2 cents
  8. Just wanted to add: I personally am not really a fan of forming a group from the start. To me and my players, just getting thrown into a more or less random constellation feels kinda unnatural, and it deprives players from acting out the getting to know your peers part, which can be very fun. So whenever we start something fresh, the GM in question makes an effort to get them together "organically", having (short!) introduction scenes for each PC that culminate in them pursuing the same goal. In the case of DH, this is ridiculously easy, as it only has to end in "and then you get recruited by the inquisition" Also along those lines, we've found that not knowing the other player's characters and background stories in advance (out-game) greatly adds to the interest the PCs develop in getting to know each other. But just as any other thing in RP, this totally boils down to personal taste and group style. It requires players that actually enjoy getting to know the other PCs in-game and that don't mind listening to others playing for half an hour. Just thought it worth considering.
  9. Morning! I absolutely second what has been stated before, plus some elaboration. I hope you don't mind me cannibalizing other threads to sum up some good points on novice GMing ^^ First off, combat encounter design advice from covered in Weasels (http://community.fantasyflightgames.com/index.php?/topic/101369-wanted-advice-on-effective-combat/): Provide cover for both players and enemies. Ideally there will be multiple different strengths of cover -- for example, a chapel might have many ARM 8 wooden pews and several ARM 16 stone pillars in the main floor area. Interior walls of buildings are usually ARM 8 unless they are reinforced in some way; modern rifles can pierce a typical wall and hit somebody on the other side with enough force to cause injury. Provide routes for combatants to flank or charge each other. A straight corridor shoot-out generally makes for poor tactical gameplay. Have stairs and balconies that pass above or below the main combat floor. Perhaps some routes are faster or safer than others but require a skill check to cross -- instead of walking around the edge of a pit full of hazardous waste, a character could use Acrobatics to cross the narrow girders leading across the pit. Let players interact with the environment in some way. Maybe tables can be flipped to provide cover, or an industrial lift can be raised to give someone a height advantage. Players can shoot pipes to produce a cloud of steam, duplicating the effects of a smoke grenade. Entering the proper code into a computer terminal (Tech-Use) could reprogram nearby repair servitors to attack your enemies. Give the players an objective besides "kill everyone." Maybe an important target is fleeing while minions and traps cover his retreat. Do the players advance cautiously and risk losing their quarry, or do they rush the enemy and possibly expose themselves to serious harm? Maybe the party Adept has to decrypt some vital data and must be protected while a large force of mercenaries tries to stop him, and the Acolytes must hold out against a superior enemy while the non-combat party member makes an extended skill test. If the Acolytes want to take a cult leader alive so they can interrogate him, they will hesitate to use their boltguns and power swords against a potentially dangerous enemy. Second, advice on creating atmosphere by humble me (http://community.fantasyflightgames.com/index.php?/topic/102066-new-homebrew-campaign/): - Descriptions: Don't tell your players there's "kinda a building", but "there's a dilapidated habblock, grey ferrocrete, in places plastered over with flaking paint that has yellowed. A lone lumenglobe spills dim light over the cracked stairs." As has been pointed out before, this can be overdone, so don't drown your players in details, but whenever you want to shine a spotlight on specific ppl, events, environments, or envoke a particular emotion, this is the tool of choice. - In Character: Whenever possible, use direct speech when portraying NPCs. That is, don't tell your players "the guy tells you that he has seen the person in question yesterday", but spell it out, adopt the NPC's manner of speech, choice of words, facial expressions, body language, slang, act as good as you can. Is she a noble with windy speech or an underhive scum? It also serves as giving away clues - if you're talking in-character and the character hesitates before answering, players will know that something's amiss (if they paid attention) without the need of a dice-roll. Also, encourage your players to do the same. It's weird in the beginning, but it definitely pays off, immersion-wise. - No Jokes. There's nothing wrong with good humour at the gaming table! Especially in the beginning phase, we do have a lot of laughs. But if you're trying to build atmosphere, there's nothing more immersion breaking than a joke at the wrong time. Even though it might be brilliant, when you're delivering an emotional scene, a flat joke will destroy everything you've worked for for a few seconds of laughter. Same goes for off-topic discussions, smoke breaks etc., cut those as short as possible, ask your players to focus on the game. That's not being a draconian, humourless overlord, but simply politely getting things on track. Sacrificing a few bits of socializing and laughter every other weekend will gain you something far more valuable: a memorable, immersive story you made yourself - Exterior factors: if you can manage, try to shut out the outer world. No persons barging into the room turning on the TV, if at all possible, no kids running around crying for attention from mom (we had that once ~shudder~), or mom peeking curiously into the room to see what her kids are up to. Try to play in a secluded spot and at a time with smallest possible amounts of distractions. I prefer a rather dim lighting while playing, further drenching the outer world in shadow, but that's personal taste. Also, I use a laptop with ready-made playlists for background music, generic sountrack collections (games are excellent) with tracks sorted into categories such as "heroic", "sad", "combat", "neutral background", "sacral" and so on. It's a bit of a workload to get your initial playlists, but you can use and extend them for years, and in my experience, music makes one hell of a difference concerning atmosphere. We even have been using intro tracks for years (atm Spirits Within by Audiomachine), that we play after having summed up the last session and before starting to actually play. It works well as defining the transition from out-game to in-game, gives players the opportunity to focus on their character for a few minutes and the GM to have a last quick look over notes or get rid of all the reallife-ballast clogging up imagination. My two cents, pick what you like, discard the rest.
  10. Most definitely a good story, and a very interesting take on the Mechanicus and its relationship to the rest of the Imperium. Dan Abnett is imho one of the finest writers out there (apart from his sloppy endings, grrrr!), and as has been stated before, his Inquisition trilogy is one hell of an inspiration for DH. They've also been the last books in quite a while to keep me up at night, since different from most popular Space Marine novels, these really get down to the character, their thoughts, struggles, hopes and doubts. And often, their failures ~sniff~ And, as I don't get tired to point out, Abnett does NOT depict 40K as a uniformely dark and depressing setting. There's friendship, faith, honesty and even love in his books, contrasted to the grim dark reality, and that is why they are so emotionally intense. Though I'm getting a bit off topic here, so uhm, yeah, have your player read Titanicus or, if he has a lot of time on his hands, the Inquisition books by Dan Abnett. They will most probably get him into the mood and answer some questions of what makes him unique. Alternatively, you could read them yourself and nick some parts to forge a scene for the two of you to play.
  11. Yeah I've been thinking about the paperwork-hurdle, too. But then again, if they are really hell-bent on requisitioning this damned interplanetary shuttle or sweeping this house, who's to stop them? I can possibly think that it would take days and weeks of paperwork to request an Arbites kill-squad or PDF, and yes, if they overdo it, their inq might give them hell afterwards, but in the heat of the moment if they just act... Can I reasonably have simple guards just doing their job stand up to the oh so powerful inquisition? Their newest exploit: they arrested a noble's personal doctor, falsely accused him of murder and if things go where I think they go, my Arbitrator's excrutiator kit will make an apperance next session. Yet there seems nothing I can do about it in terms of retaliation on the noble's part. So far, they've been very polite around priests (damned acolytes know whose boots to lick XD), but I wonder how the consequences you mentioned would look like if they give in to their arrogance some ranks from now...
  12. don't know if still an issue, but if your player is into books I'd recommend Dan Abnett's Titanicus. Apart from being an excellent book, it has some quite interesting Mechanicus characters - though I do not know how exactly canon the whole thing is.
  13. Finally, kind of up and about again. Tell about my team, alright, I'd be glad to! I have in my group three acolytes: A voidborn Psyker (Pyro), who is really clever and his player is exceptionally inventive and smart in finding connections, avoiding risks and such. Also, the character is extremely fearful of physical contact with the outer world, unfiltered air, rainwater and the like. A melee Assassin from a postapocalyptic feral world who lost her brother in an orbital bombardement ordered by Imperial authoritied and thus is secretly a liiiiittle bit biased toward the whole Imperium thing. She's a combat monster who pretty much two-hits everything I set before her. An extremely pious Arbitrator following the Cult of the Emperor Revenant and praying to his ancestors every night. His noble family was wiped out by unknown forces (my evil villains, but he does not know yet), so he grew up in a Schola Progenium and is totally devoted to the Imperium and the Inquisition. He practically reveres their inquisitor, and I hope to have his resolve decently tested further down the road when he finds out what the Inquisitor is up to. While none of the PCs is particularly adept at social interaction, they put up a good fight in interrogations. All of them are overly thorough in investigations, they want to know EVERY tiny detail and follow absolutely every clue ever seeded and every hint dropped ever so casually. That's why most of the published scenarios don't work for them without excessive adding on my part They stretch their inquisitorial authority a bit too much for my taste, like daring to order a very powerful noble to let them search her house on very thin evidence - and really, what to do about that? - but other than that, they've so far stayed firmly on the puritanical side and done a very good job at uncovering the conspiracy.
  14. Wow people, where u taking all this ideas out of thin air from? It must be amazing to be a creative person There was quite some food for thought in your posts, I will need to wrap it up when I'm no longer thrown off track by the flu. I totally dig that arena gambling thing - I won't use it now because I forgot to mention that Darcia is supposed to be a rather nice lady and definitely not into warp dabbling, but I'll rip it off for some other scenario, if you don't mind ^^ A lot of great ideas for Azarel. I'm beginning to think that I might be thinking too linearly. Maybe I should just define where they are, how they got there and what they are doing, and for once just wing along and improvise... Need to go back to bed, but thanks a lot!
  15. Hello everyone, I'm delevolping a bit of a bad conscience for constantly asking for advice and ideas here - I'm trying to make up for it by answering other ppl's posts and give what advice I can, but still... Beg your forgiveness, but here we go again: I'm stuck and in dire need of imaginative minds for plotting. Against the background of a larger campaign, my acolytes are atm searching in Hive Sybellus for two persons they need to solve a certain riddle. Number one, Darcia Bonneaux, is a stonemason gone artist, hailing from a rather downtrodden industrial sector of the hive, who managed to escape the confines of the toiling masses and make a halfway decent living from her art. She has recently gone into hiding since my acolythes' opposition is targeting her. Number two, Greco Azarel, is a trader of curiosities, and an underhand smuggler of xenos artefacts, residing in a shady hive area at the coast (the Corsair Docks). He's crafty at not getting found, especially by someone like the Inquisition. (There is, of course, a lot more to them and the story, but I won't bore you with irrelevant details.) So, what I now need are some roadblocks and obstacles for the PCs to overcome as they search for those two. It's not important where they are hiding, just that they are not keen on being found. Also, I need to drop some hints about the Hive's raising weirdness level as foreshadowing of the events to come. I had some vague thoughts, but problems getting them rolling... Darcia: So far, I'd thought that she might have sought shelter from her attackers with a rich industrial magnate, the person who practically owns the district she hails from and that she had dealings with in the past. He likes to adorn himself with pretty artists and kind of keeps her as a pet in exchange for hiding her. In that case, my acolytes would need to be pointed to said magnate, but of course I don't wanna blatantly show them "talk to this guy", and I'm kind of at a loss of additional hints and leads to get them there (as it is, they will be pointed to her stepbrother and the orphanage they both grew up in for some character background and infos not related to the search). While searching for her, the PCs could stumble over some sinister dealings the magnate has been up to. Maybe he has gone insane - one of the many minds tripped over the edge these days by the build-up to desaster the PCs are caught up in - and has founded a kind of "end of days pleasure cult"? Drugging his workers to squeeze out even more performance to finance his increased expenses? Using debased and forbidden substances to power his machines? Has he actually imprisoned Darcia because she saw something she was not supposed to see? I seem to have a problem getting a straight storyline out of this... Greco Azarel: Well, he's basically a criminal, and I have no idea how to go about finding a criminal who does not want to be found. He's not conducting shady business at street corners, so no tailing petty dealers. It's more that he has a set and exclusive clientele (mostly rich) that he knows and kind of trusts, new customers will find him to be a harmless merchant of nick-nacks. Initially, my PCs know nothing more than his name and the buzzword "Corsair" to point them to the district. One of them is an Arbitrator, so he might have a chance of pulling some info out of the Arbites database on authority of the =][=, but of course, as above, I'd rather try to avoid to lead them straight to their prize. So, roadblocks, obstacles, enemies, links in a chain of leads, rip-offs from CSI Miami - I'll gratefully take everything you can think of. Again, sorry to bother and thank you all on this forum for being so supportive of this at times tensed-up GM!
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