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JenBurdoo

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  1. I'd probably award a single point of insanity for anything relating to the nature of Chaos, weirder Xenos, or the hidden history of the Imperium, increasing the penalty with each increase in knowledge. Horus Heresy, for example - just knowing that anyone could rebel that strongly should be a shock to anyone who's been raised to revere the Emperor and his works. With higher levels ("What, you mean half of all Space Marines deserted the Imperium and Emperor they had sworn to protect? How is that even possible?") Same should come with anyone whose background is significantly different from what they're learning. If someone from an Ecclesiarchal world learns tech-lore related to the nature of the Omnissiah, or vice versa, they should at least have to take a test against insanity ("How can they believe that? And how can I possibly be taking it seriously?"). And if the lore is related to something that, if encountered, would require a test, it should also require at least a lesser test of the same nature. Studying the nature of a Fear-causing daemon should cause Insanity or Corruption tests, even without encountering it directly ("It does what? To your what? And the only way we can counter it is how?"). Even reading the dread tome could trigger a simple Fear test ("I don't want to hear any more tonight, Daddy...")
  2. I like this idea, and it gives me a thought for a one-shot based on the ST:TNG episode "Clues," in which the crew is stunned and thinks they've woken up thirty seconds later. Until they start gathering clues that something's wrong, significantly more time has actually passed, and that android Data, who cannot be stunned, is lying about the incident. Heck, you could even found a party and campaign with it -- a bunch of people wake up to gradually discover that the Inquisition has mindwiped them. Once they work out what actually happened, the Inquisitor appears and offers them places in his retinue. Or, if it's a oneshot, kills them.
  3. I am considering cribbing some of these dishes for my fantasy game. Thanks!
  4. The Eisenhorn, Ravenor and Calpurnia series are all fairly good for showing a wide variety of civilian societies. It's also not a bad idea to take inspiration from GW's cribbing from real history. For example, the Drookian Fentroopers are basically Anglo-Scots Borderers, and it's quite obvious whoever fluffed them out had read GM Fraser's history The Steel Bonnets. Basically imagine a decentralized medieval society in a hilly, swampy area, riven with warring, feuding families (I suspect Game of Thrones cribs a lot from them too - the Neck in particular fits) and trained as expert light cavalry - Brettonian squires would be perfect minis for a Drookian army. Fraser's novel Candlemass Road set in the same place and period is incredibly dark and atmospheric and could easily inspire an investigation set set on Drook, or any other medieval world. Basically, pick your favorite novel, read it thoroughly, and steal. There are any number of noir detective novels and Humphrey Bogart films, for example, which could inspire a hive (they also inspire life in Star Wars' Coruscant in the novels.
  5. I'm considering using Space Hulk tiles for a game along these lines. Maybe a third faction, like servitors or servo-skulls wandering around trying to defend the complex from both sides?
  6. I should think it's possible for an Inquisitor, or more likely an acolyte, to be insinuated into an assassin temple. There is an Ordo dedicated to watching them (Assassinorum?) and it's been stated that one of their preferred methods is to have 5th-column assassins under their thumb. So I could see an assassin revealing themselves as having been an Inquisitorial acolyte all along and perhaps rising to Inquisitor -- although, since we've seen almost nothing from the POV of an actual Temple Assassin, I'm not sure they'd be able to retain their qualities. Might depend on the temple. Eversors are kept quiescent at all times save when in battle, for example, so there wouldn't be much use for an acolyte that had gotten through the training - he could never sneak around or report any findings to his Inquisitor. The others, though...
  7. XD20, or rather this free variant of it: http://rpg-tinker.blogspot.com/2014/11/heres-d20-adventure-game.html The character sheet has five stats, the game is mostly narrative, and it takes 60 seconds to roll up a PC or monster. In a pinch, it can be played with a single D20. This makes combat lightning-fast -- players don't have to look at a list of possible moves as in Only War, or check off a bunch of feats as in DnD. Personally, I think combat SHOULD be fast, and even chaotic, and given my inexperience and GMing style it is. I've experimented with it in Dark Heresy and Only War, playing through a few adventures on my own, and it works OK. It works well with the newbies I've got, since the GM basically does all the work. And you can still use actual sourcebooks for inspiration, conversion and illustrations. The rules above state that once you're out of HP "You cannot take a hit without serious consequences," and this is where I use a simplified version of the 40K crit table: - Pick a hit location. - Roll a D10. - 1-3: Slight injury/inconvenience. - 3-7: Serious injury of increasing severity. - 8: Lose a body part. - 9: Save or die. - 10: Die messily. I also use a version of fate points, AKA mulligans -- I let them reroll one die per session, and burn future rerolls to avoid death.
  8. Ohhh, now you respond. In the event, I ended up sticking to rules-lite fantasy with a few 40K rules thrown in (particularly the awesome crit tables). The intent was to play straight through Eleven Hours and go from there if possible. I am still looking at using elements of adventures and comrades simply because my theme is military. Because I can't predict which players will turn up on a given day, I look at it as "The captain just assigned everyone here on a specific mission, maybe with some NPCs to help." Everyone else is assigned elsewhere, or in recovery, or in lockup. Anyone who turns up late arrives out of breath, reporting that "The captain sent reinforcements!" Anyone who has to leave in the middle gets hurled into a wall by the monster-of-the-week and knocked out. And so on. In 40K terms, they're basically a mixed impromptu Enforcer team... and right now they are fighting zombies with inspiration from the Nurgle parts of the rulebooks.
  9. It is fairly negative in relation to Calixis, in particular the level of Inquisitorial involvement. Calixis Inquisitors operate openly, and there are a LOT of them, with a ton of hooks and major threats to deal with. Askellon, on the other hand, is going downhill and it's entirely possible that the PC's Inquisitor is the only one in the entire sector. But what that means is that the players can possibly have a far greater effect on the sector as a whole, especially if their Inquisitor plays a personal role in the party. Askellon is so badly off that the players will make a difference whatever they do -- either destroy a planet or save it. There's perhaps greater room for outright heroics. I like the influence mechanic as a way to indicate the party's impact, because around Askellon it can make waves. That would make playing a campaign in Askellon where the players are more open about their allegiance possibly more fruitful -- There's no one to say them nay if they raise an army to fight orks or purge a planet's leadership, and that can lead to wider changes for the better. Especially if they play as Recongregators.
  10. Hi. I'm a librarian thinking of running Only War (the teens expressed interest). I'm not really expecting it to turn into a campaign (a half-dozen sessions with luck), so am looking at running with just the starter rules from Eleven Hours, adding bits and pieces if interest increases. I ran a semi-successful DnD-style rules-lite fantasy campaign for them (all of them utter newbies at the time), and they're interested in trying a different genre. Well, one was thinking of a Pathfinder Fighter, but I reckon I can give him a Catachan with a knife and sword and that may work for him. Right now I have three players, but might end up with more once I display some 40K books in the teen area. Here's the catch: The sessions will be one hour a week. One and a half at the outside. (I have zero leeway with my programming schedule.) Even with the starter rules, that may be pushing it. Thoughts on how to cut Only War to the bare bones? Or on chopping the Eleven Hours scenario into discrete one-hour pieces? I am thinking of using some other system (Tracy Hickman's XD20 worked very well for the fantasy game) but suspect they would prefer the greater crunchiness and choice of something more complex like OW with its nine stats, d100, skills and talents. Thanks for any suggestions!
  11. Sorry it's a bit late; I wonder if you've moved forward on this, and if so how it's going. Sounds like a cool idea, if a little complex of a unit.
  12. I think of Cain as Flashman and Jurgen as McAuslan -- if only the regiment were Drookian Fen Troopers or Finreht Highlanders the resemblance would be perfect. Another major change from canon is that the "framing story" is expressly written in M.42, which has never been and may never be reached in the tabletop game. It's always one minute to midnight -- no further. More recently of course, Schola Progeniums have been shown to be far harsher and grimdark than depicted in Cain or Gaunt's Ghosts, which leads to a bit of dissonance. I've read it argued that what we see in the rulebooks is merely propaganda, promoting the ideal, and the fiction reflects the "reality" of the setting better. I sometimes think of them as mildly alternate universes, like the difference between the Bloodbowl version of the Warhammer World and the "normal" version.
  13. Hm, hadn't thought about that. Perhaps leaving with the same or most, but narratively make them junior? If they're in command of the squad at death, for example, have their next PC be a trooper and whoever was playing 2inC gets to be Sergeant next?
  14. Yes, I would, assuming all the characters are part of the same regiment and have had (offscreen) the same experiences. It could easily be different in something like Dark Heresy, where you have characters from all over, some of whom have been in the band for decades and some of whom joined last week. Unless your regiment has a mix of experience (say, a combined unit), I'd stick with the fluff -- which is that regiments rarely recruit from home, but rather dwindle into more veteran units.
  15. What about the fact that players are not a lone party, but part of a far larger regiment and can more readily replace characters? Granted, you'd have to expect more frequent death and maybe quicker character generation... but as I suggested in the thread on Open Campaigns, it also allows for more varied characters and even drop-in players. I'm running a DnD game right now at work (I'm a teen librarian) and leaning towards Encounters-style for the ability to easily slot in new and part-time players as, at the very least, NPCs. I'm starting to think about trying to run Only-War-lite for them at some point, as the concept is one of the most approachable to people who haven't encountered the 40K mythos before. Something where new characters and players can drop in or out quickly would probably work well and (to return to the thread topic) require less prep time.
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