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The Inquisition2

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  1. It doesn't necessarily need to be an assassin. The key is to examine the resources the enemy has available, and what they would reasonably do to defeat the players. The main thing is plausibility-- the challenges should seem like they're coming from somewhere, usually the player's own actions and perhaps how the world might respond. So if the enemy has a crazy psyker coming to mindflay them all day... Do they have enough thrones to afford an Untouchable? Or maybe the heretics will try to call a Witch Hunter unfamiliar with your acolytes and claim that they're the victims of a heretic psyker coming to kill them. Rambo with a hellgun is coming to shoot them? Well can they afford an AdMech to jam his gun or a powersword melee combatant to try and keep him busy, or even perhaps destroy the weapon? The idea is that it shouldn't be arbitrary. The world should be reacting to your players in a very clearly demonstrable manner, and they should perhaps always have 'agency' in that world. And sure, if the combat specialist gets taken out, everybody else is probably next. The acolytes can always run though. This is the grim darkness of the far future: you may not win every fight. But as long as it's likely reasonable, and the story is perhaps entertaining, it may tend to be fun! If there are largely non-combat characters in the group, the GM should usually try to have clearly placed 'big moments' for them too. Often combat seems the most threatening to players, so many times groups have that feel the 'biggest'. But it need not be so! Have some investigation, repair, oratory, or other challenges that perhaps have a similar 'timing' element. "You've got three tests to repair the plasma exhaust, or that delegation eats it." "The crowd seems to be waiting for your speech. Three tests to sway them to heretic killing." "Will you piece together the right codephrase from Epistles 2-7 and a child's drawing? Roll." I may tend to give bonuses for reasonably described tactics, though. For each challenge, try to make the players aware of the results of their actions! In combat it can tend to be more obvious, but for other challenges it may benefit from more GM tracking and description likely both as the action occurs and at times afterward. For more entertaining combat with noncombatant-style characters as well, you may wish to look over their skills and try to consider what those could do in a firefight environment. And remember: Grenades exist.
  2. This is deliberate, and happens in almost every background package. As an RPG, it is up to the players to decide for their own characters how they came to the Holy Ordos. Now now, Sororitas have always had space magic. To more or less extent, their whole thing is 'battle miracles', from Celestine to ignoring cover. As the talent goes, "Witch Sight" is close to mindreading, rather than purging daemons with golden light and the extra-specialness of 'Fate Points'. That mindreading might even be an Emperor-sourced boon, like the Emperor's Tarot, although the superstitious Ecchlesiarchy certainly might not consider it that way. (After all, they perhaps wouldn't even like the Emperor's own Imperial Truth from his very mouth. AKA "Don't worship me newbies, go for innovation and human solidarity!") Yes, they're very good at detecting active psykers. (Albeit perhaps through usually non-genetic means.) Latent psykers often escape detection, and the process isn't flawless. Even the Black Templars miss psykers before they receive the gene-seed. So they may send them off to the Deathwatch. But psyker detection may not detect those with non-psyker abilities, like 'gifts' from The Emperor. That's the sad irony of this background. "Witch Sight" probably is a boon direct from The Emperor, complete with the 'fate point' activation cost-- but her sisters' superstition alone commits the poor young girl to torture and death.
  3. I would recommend almost never doing this, unless the players agreed to have that kind of game before hand. Taking away hard earned things tends to be extremely annoying to players-- if they lose something, it should usually be because of their own actions. Another useful way of handling combat disparity is simply to give the less-direct-combat characters something else to do during combat. Buttons to push, litanies to read, desperate research to make. Then it's the combat characters job to either protect the others, or alternatively be assisted by the others. Say a tech-priest interfaces with a plasma valve, and opens it on the enemy. There's all sorts of stuff! Make the environment diverse enough for everyone.
  4. This isn't really too 'unrealistic' itself-- it depends how it's handled. I perhaps usually recommend that challenges for the players be created in many cases by 'sensible adaptation': if the enemy is aware of the capabilities of the players, they may likely try to send things suited to defeat them. Assassins to take out the main combat threat can perhaps be pretty popular among foes. Basically ask yourself: "If these guys were coming for me, how would I stop them?" If you make it plausible and internally consistent from their foe's perspective, players may tend not to mind.
  5. Well basically, whatever your acolytes want, someone (or somewhere) else has to have it. So what I usually do is have 'micro encounters', where one of the party (or any number) goes to see whoever has the item, and roleplays up a request to get it. Then they can basically develop contacts for certain things, who operate by various trades, barters, or purchases. If it's a larger or rarer requisition, they might need to do some additional interaction to get it. Remember, thrones are not all the acolytes have to offer in their service to the Holy Ordos. (Or to greedy merchant combines and their lasgun stockpiles.)
  6. Well if there's still only one dodge per round, presumably he would either get hit by those attacks, or they'd miss. Most likely penalties from volume of fire would take the form of a pinning test.
  7. "Denounced and Condemned" states that the Sister was imprisoned and tortured for being a witch, and that she is not actually a psyker. Only the inquisitor's authority saved her from what would apparently have been near continuous questioning and torture to determine if and how she consorted with 'dark powers' until she died. (Presumably why they didn't kill her immediately.) Although she is still 'condemned as a heretic', and perhaps not permitted any dealings with her former sisters, not even as a Repentia. For the screening, the Imperium may be incapable of large scale genetic screening for the psyker gene (or genes), and may not be much aware of what specifically causes it. That understanding is probably still along the lines of the archaeotech level that created the Navigators. Presumably they use good old fashioned witchtests and tons of psyniscience for most cases. Genetic testing would additionally be the realm of the Adeptus Mechanicus Genetors and Magos Biologi, and those studying the psyker gene may even be 'techsorcists'-- they may or may not be inclined to work with the Ecchlesiarchy, perhaps for fear of being branded heretics themselves.
  8. Easily possible, especially in real life. Common Lore is what is commonly known by the populace about the organization. If you're the underground bunker commander, you may never have had any interaction with that information. I think there needs to be a list of lore's that acolytes should have at trained/known when they start, like 'common law inquisition'. It would represent them knowing roughly what powers they had and their immediate hierarchy "We report to the man we know as Lucian Hekate, he passes that our information to our inquisitor. We don't know how because we don't need to know". I think there should also be the equivalent of 'secret signs: Inquisition' (maybe incorporated into the same lore talent) that would be common knowledge for acolytes required to leave info via dead-drops etc. I'm also in favour of a 'basic weapon training' package that would allow all players to start with the ability to use las and solid projectile ballistic weapons, along with basic melee things like knives. Well that sort of specific thing doesn't really need to be a skill in most cases. Contact info for a single inquisitor is just that-- it might not apply to every inquisitor. Acolytes don't really need to know much about the inquisition as a whole to work for it, other than what they might find in Common Lore (Imperium). As the workings of the Inquisition itself internally are rather secret, it would probably tend to be a Forbidden Lore skill. (As it is in DH1.) Although of course the Inquisition probably wouldn't be troubled much by you having that if you're working for them. Forbidden Lore (Inquisition) may be considered worthy of interrogation if you weren't, though. For inquisitors that wish a measure of more secret communications, they may perhaps provide the Secret Tongue (name of the language). So if you were a close associate of Eisenhorn, you might have Secret Tongue (Glossia).
  9. That's not really accurate. It's a game mechanic that demonstrates a particular character ability. You may as well say Weapon Training and Common Lore render the character 'immune' to those mechanics. The goal of the mechanics is to render the world in an internally consistent manner: Quick Draw clearly does that. Not everyone is skilled at that. (And there are quick draw competitions in real life.) Something like "Into the Jaws of Hell" might not, and by that virtue may be considered a poor mechanic.
  10. Let's examine this for a moment. Quickdraw like any other talent has governing aptitudes; They are agility and Finesse. The Minimum cost for a character with both aptitudes is 200xp (not 100). For a character that has neither (Which is very possible with the aforementioned sage) the cost goes up to 600xp! That means if your Sage is Hellbent on getting quickdraw he will spend most or all of his XP from as many as THREE game sessions getting it! That's as many as SIX new lore skills he WON'T be getting! I'd say the cost is plenty steep enough for a traditional non-combatant! I still believe it should be divided up by weapon type but that's just me! I would say everyone in a group trying to rush quickdraw is probably a group-specific thing, rather than a general problem. If your game is such that the Adept has legitimately nothing else he wants to purchase-- you may be running a game with such a saturation of combat that playing an Adept at all might be somewhat pointless.
  11. This is not actually true, and why many latents escape detection to become problems later. They are actually a normal human with zero ability to develop psychic powers before the trigger point. In essence, a latent psyker likely cannot use psyker techniques at all, no matter how hard they try or if they are instructed in them, until they 'awaken'. (Which is described in the Inquisitor's Handbook, and perhaps elsewhere in the RPGs.) There doesn't seem to be any lore reason this cannot be the case for an Untouchable. I'm not sure why you're stating it would require anything more special than a nascent psyker style of trigger, or cause a 'dreadful husk' to be formed. I mean, that's a bit like saying a nascent psyker will always rip a hole to the warp on awakening and get possessed. Because your post seemed to have two mutually exclusive statements in that regard. If you're agreeing that a 'spirit' can be lost to become a null, the first part of your post would likely be inaccurate. As a 'spirit' can be lost, and psychic nulls are usually created genetically, it would seem that a mutation or potential alteration in genetic transcription due to external stressors may be able to do it, among other potentials.
  12. There are cases where over 10 is considered (and sometimes likely), like RT's Hit and Run. Assisted Tests could always be a probability modification: You can all roll to do it, and all characters pool their DoS and DoF for the final result. (This could be combined with a bonus as well, though.) That of course introduces the chance that an assistant may cause it to fail-- but then that is fairly plausible. (And may be a more dramatic choice on whether to request help or not.) There could also be a 'limited assistance' option, where the bonus might be less, but failure is limited or removed. But that may not be necessary. It is the grim darkness of the far future after all.
  13. You should almost always start a new player at exactly the same exp as everyone else, and your group for helping the new player should almost always have fully the same exp between each player. Separate leveling is something pretty much only experienced groups handle well. As he's a new player, you should probably run through basic character creation with him, leave 6000 exp available (technically awarded), then just go through the basics of getting him in the game at roughly the same power as the others. Then perhaps allow him to switch out or buy things with the exp as he gets more experienced. Fluff is a non-issue because there are tons of reasons a ship might have a highly skilled operative on board, from him being a stranded plant from another inquisitor, to a highly skilled guardsman who got exiled on punitive duty.
  14. Yes, this is an excellent advantage of DH and RT-- they provide framework for more expressiveness of story and characters. The premade adventure in DH2 Beta is actually quite good as an introduction, since it offers the option of three different organizations being either loyal, criminals, or heretics. Thus the GM can run the campaign quite a few different ways, with much less 'railroad'.
  15. Well then: Heresy may begin as a single mote of thought in a sea of idleness, but can certainly spread amongst the very foundations of a world, slowly bathing it in ruin from the knees up. A hive world whose initial interest to the acolytes may be simple discrepancies of protocol may unfold into a widespread infiltration of occult practices among all levels of society. Might that ecchlesiarchal statue of blood dripping from the hand of The Emperor upon a backdrop of eight warriors with eight axes under eight stars be a simple local and pure observance of The Emperor, or a slowly corrupting effigy to Khorne? Could ritual duels between underhive gangers be innocent territorial politics, or an obsession with the perfection of land borders and flawless martial skill? Could the reason for conflict have been lost in the pure Slanneshian desire to be the 'perfect' duelist and crimelord alike? Corruption may be highly insidious, and the slow deterioration of seemingly innocent local practices may eventually reach the point of breaching the warp's veil. As for such a 'talent'-- perhaps the only way a pious servant of The Emperor might become affected by it is likely if he loses the reason he hates psykers. When it just becomes about the death, and the killing, rather than protecting humanity from their baleful influence.
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