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Lord Master Igneus

Rak'Gol vs Space Marines?

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I'm going to be doing this in my next session as GM in deathwatch, have any of you RT GMs had an encounter like this or any suggestions for playing as the Rak'Gol?

 

I am going to be having a few that lay down suppressive fire with their ranged weapons while the others charge the 4 marines.

 

I'm assuming that they can be snuck by easily? Given that they all have somewhat low perception and wouldn't do well on opposed tests.

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I guess it depends more on the Marines in question than the Rak'Gol. Certain chapters would fare better than others against them (Dark Angels Deathwing and reliance on heavier weapons would be an initial advantage unless they were swarmed, at which point melee focussed chapters like Blood Angels or Space Wolves might fare better. Also Space Wolves and White Scares might do well on their opposed Stealth tests and be able to get into awesome positions to launch hit and run attacks, crippling Rak'Gol commanders etc).
Ultimately though i'd say don't get bogged down in rolling die for one set of NPCs vs another set of NPCs - it gets boring for the players and can be just as easily handled by the GM just narrating what is happening based on a few sample die rolls or logical deductions (100 Rak'Gol charge 2 Astartes, doesn't matter if the Astartes are wearing Terminator armour they will still go down under weight of numbers so just don't roll).

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They'd be going up against a Librarian, Assault Marine, Apothecary, and Techmarine. The latter two are Iron Hands (one is a Son of Medusa) with Machine 4. I'm thinking they'll go into solo mode and get hatred against them and the other two hold them in melee.

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Player characters, on board a Rogue Trader vessel that appeared through the Jericho Maw Warp Gate. There are a few survivors and a lot of Rak'Gol hiding around.

 

Should be fun.

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My Deathwatch campaign is set in the Calixis Sector (since I also GM Dark Heresy, and I didn't want to juggle two different settings). This rules out the 'traditional' xeno enemies in DW (Tyranids and Tau), since they are only found in large numbers in Ultima Segmentum, so I've had to plan the campaign around available Obscurous aliens. After helping turn the tide of the Ork Waaagh! on the Spinward Front as the 'low-level' campaign challenge, they will be confronting Rak-Gol marauders emerging from the Koronus Expanse as the 'mid-level' story focus (high level: Nnnnnecrons! Bwah ha ha!). They aren't there yet, however, so I don't have any first-hand input for you...

Edited by Adeptus-B

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Rak'Gol are fairly worthwhile opponents since their wound count probably means they can take at least one hit and stay standing. Their Armour/Toughness mean one-on-one they probably won't pose a significant challenge to a Space Marine though.

 

What will pose a challenge is a Techno-Shaman. Read the description of Distort Function, realise that a suit of power armour and a storm bolter or power sword are two mechanical devices, and that a Space Marine doesn't get an opposed test to resist this power.

 

The Rak'Gol are why my players have switched to Carapace Armour.

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What will pose a challenge is a Techno-Shaman. Read the description of Distort Function, realise that a suit of power armour and a storm bolter or power sword are two mechanical devices, and that a Space Marine doesn't get an opposed test to resist this power.

It actually makes me chuckle to imagine a group of space marines standing around going "hurrrrr" as the techno-shaman wanders in between them and just merges the entire unit into some Akira-esque abomination. Don't get me wrong - RAW, it's a hilariously broken power if you can actually get it off. Just wave your hand and permanently destroy every single piece of gear on every character within range, no save. Heck, use it on someone's bionics, kill him instantly, or at least leave him crippled for the rest of the mission. No save.

 

But Range: Psy Rating x2 meters says that unless yours is the stealthiest Rak'Gol in history, or manifests next to the PCs out of a cloud of GM fiat, I don't see that happening very often. Parties without Forbidden Lore (Xenos) don't count, for the same reason parties that cram meltabombs up their noses and detonate them don't count - you obviously can't win if you commit suicide.

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What will pose a challenge is a Techno-Shaman. Read the description of Distort Function, realise that a suit of power armour and a storm bolter or power sword are two mechanical devices, and that a Space Marine doesn't get an opposed test to resist this power.

It actually makes me chuckle to imagine a group of space marines standing around going "hurrrrr" as the techno-shaman wanders in between them and just merges the entire unit into some Akira-esque abomination. Don't get me wrong - RAW, it's a hilariously broken power if you can actually get it off. Just wave your hand and permanently destroy every single piece of gear on every character within range, no save. Heck, use it on someone's bionics, kill him instantly, or at least leave him crippled for the rest of the mission. No save....

 

 

Where is this "Techno-Shaman" power you speak of?

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Navis Primer, xenos psychic powers. It's the first book of the Rogue Trader line to really get into the nutty power creep that started somewhere in the Deathwatch-Black Crusade time frame.

 

Not nearly as bad as everything that came after it, though.

Edited by Magellan

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There will be one Techno Shaman on board the ship, he'll be sort of the boss of the mission I guess. I'm thinking of having his psy-rating be 6 or 7? He won't have that one particular power and will mostly be offensive when it comes to his powers.

 

The players will be getting help from an NPC towards the end. He is a drinker of blood.

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What will pose a challenge is a Techno-Shaman. Read the description of Distort Function, realise that a suit of power armour and a storm bolter or power sword are two mechanical devices, and that a Space Marine doesn't get an opposed test to resist this power.

It actually makes me chuckle to imagine a group of space marines standing around going "hurrrrr" as the techno-shaman wanders in between them and just merges the entire unit into some Akira-esque abomination. Don't get me wrong - RAW, it's a hilariously broken power if you can actually get it off. Just wave your hand and permanently destroy every single piece of gear on every character within range, no save. Heck, use it on someone's bionics, kill him instantly, or at least leave him crippled for the rest of the mission. No save.

 

But Range: Psy Rating x2 meters says that unless yours is the stealthiest Rak'Gol in history, or manifests next to the PCs out of a cloud of GM fiat, I don't see that happening very often. Parties without Forbidden Lore (Xenos) don't count, for the same reason parties that cram meltabombs up their noses and detonate them don't count - you obviously can't win if you commit suicide.

 

 

The Techno-Shaman was intelligent enough to plot an ambush, and used TK Sledge to burst through a wall Kool-Aid man style. Also my players love sending wave after wave of their own men first, so it had easily reached Psy Rating 10 by this point.

 

They also all have their heads crammed full of cybernetics, and I wasn't sure enough how that should work. We usually require line of sight, or at least concrete awareness of where people are, in order to use Psychic powers though. I just decided that it could only use this power on things that it could see and since power armour is all enclosing that was their armour and weapons. Still did result in the Astropath and Explorator being declared in legal union by the Rogue Trader following the fight.

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I could ask how the techno-shaman could detect them through the wall when they couldn't detect him (if nothing else, Psyniscience could have pinpointed his psychic ass from half the ship away) but leaving that aside for the actual rules discussion: 20 meters is hardly overwhelmingly far, and psychic powering his way through the wall is just gonna leave him with his turn ended and everyone's weapons pointing at him.

 

Heck, a Techno-Shaman's average damage on the Sledge is 12, so his ability to reliably get through anything stronger than cardboard is also kind of questionable.

Edited by Magellan

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Aren't the machine spirits in astartes gear meant to be a bit more resistant to warp interference? I could have sworn I read that.

 

But yeah, the Technoshaman sounds like a beast.

 

I considered Rak'Gol as opponents in my DW campaign, but realised I'd have to tweak the horde rules to make the foot soldiers viable. They simply wouldn't do enough damage either. What I came up with were hordes that could take 2-3 times the damage.

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There ain't no rule. Not even warded armour, holy equipment or archeotech relics get any kind of resistance to this power.

 

Although, technically, there's nothing in the power description saying the gear is destroyed in the process, only that the gestalt machine functions until the power stops being sustained. You could certainly allow your players to repair their kit if you're feeling generous.

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Although, technically, there's nothing in the power description saying the gear is destroyed in the process, only that the gestalt machine functions until the power stops being sustained. You could certainly allow your players to repair their kit if you're feeling generous.

I had read this as otherwise. There's a line that says the new creation only functions as long as the power is sustained, which I took as meaning when the power stops being sustained through boredom or death that the armour would no longer function.

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I could ask how the techno-shaman could detect them through the wall when they couldn't detect him (if nothing else, Psyniscience could have pinpointed his psychic ass from half the ship away) but leaving that aside for the actual rules discussion: 20 meters is hardly overwhelmingly far, and psychic powering his way through the wall is just gonna leave him with his turn ended and everyone's weapons pointing at him.

 

Heck, a Techno-Shaman's average damage on the Sledge is 12, so his ability to reliably get through anything stronger than cardboard is also kind of questionable.

 

Evidently he pushed his power to the max giving him Wp 120 and rolled 01 on his test for 6d10 +14 in damage. For an average damage of 47, but since he's a bad mofo, he maxed his damage.

His hidden prescence was due to a Yu'vath implant.

 

Remember the Rule of Cool and The Amendment of Awsome

The limit of the Willing Suspension of Disbelief for a given element is directly proportional to the element's awesomeness.

If something is awsome enough, it excuses everything!

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I could ask how the techno-shaman could detect them through the wall when they couldn't detect him (if nothing else, Psyniscience could have pinpointed his psychic ass from half the ship away) but leaving that aside for the actual rules discussion: 20 meters is hardly overwhelmingly far, and psychic powering his way through the wall is just gonna leave him with his turn ended and everyone's weapons pointing at him.

 

Heck, a Techno-Shaman's average damage on the Sledge is 12, so his ability to reliably get through anything stronger than cardboard is also kind of questionable.

 

Evidently he pushed his power to the max giving him Wp 120 and rolled 01 on his test for 6d10 +14 in damage. For an average damage of 47, but since he's a bad mofo, he maxed his damage.

His hidden prescence was due to a Yu'vath implant.

 

Remember the Rule of Cool and The Amendment of Awsome

The limit of the Willing Suspension of Disbelief for a given element is directly proportional to the element's awesomeness.

If something is awsome enough, it excuses everything!

 

 

Similar. It had pre-weakened the wall as it was meant to be an ambush, which would have been noticed with a successful Awareness test had anyone had that skill. It was probably a needless conceit, but it was more than a little meant to be fun. The Shaman had also ended its turn, but the other Rak'Gol hadn't and were capable of entering into melee. I had pictured the ambush as similar to the moment from Alien where the PCs had assumed the Rak'Gol were only capable of charging and dying, but were almost wiped out by reasonably straightforward ship tactics. Ship corridors are also no more than 10-15 meters wide most of the time, so it wasn't hard to stay in range.

 

How would Psyniscience work in that case? I had read it as you can detect a Psyker actively using or sustaining a power, but you can't just passively scan for a Psyker - that's what Mind Scan is for. As the Astropath in my campaign always sustains TK Armour and PK Shield, he made a nice glowing Psychic target and was the focal point for the ambush. 

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Well, you have me there. Not only are you right about Psyniscience, but I have to admit that's a reasonable ambush strategy.

 

Did no one seriously take Awareness?

 

 

Evidently he pushed his power to the max giving him Wp 120 and rolled 01 on his test for 6d10 +14 in damage. For an average damage of 47, but since he's a bad mofo, he maxed his damage.

His hidden prescence was due to a Yu'vath implant.

 

Remember the Rule of Cool and The Amendment of Awsome

The limit of the Willing Suspension of Disbelief for a given element is directly proportional to the element's awesomeness.

If something is awsome enough, it excuses everything!

More like if a GM is bad enough, he'll make up an excuse for anything. I submit that giving your players the finger just because is the opposite of awesome.

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Well, you have me there. Not only are you right about Psyniscience, but I have to admit that's a reasonable ambush strategy.

 

Did no one seriously take Awareness?

 

 

Evidently he pushed his power to the max giving him Wp 120 and rolled 01 on his test for 6d10 +14 in damage. For an average damage of 47, but since he's a bad mofo, he maxed his damage.

His hidden prescence was due to a Yu'vath implant.

 

Remember the Rule of Cool and The Amendment of Awsome

The limit of the Willing Suspension of Disbelief for a given element is directly proportional to the element's awesomeness.

If something is awsome enough, it excuses everything!

More like if a GM is bad enough, he'll make up an excuse for anything. I submit that giving your players the finger just because is the opposite of awesome.

 

Basically it's going to use TK sledge to knock down members of the team, I might actually do distort function or the one that does characteristic damage. One member has cybernetic senses and him and another guy are going to be able to get hatred towards the Rak'Gol passively. I won't be doing hordes, instead i'm going to be using pre-rolled initiatives for each different unit.

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Well, you have me there. Not only are you right about Psyniscience, but I have to admit that's a reasonable ambush strategy.

 

Did no one seriously take Awareness?

 

They took Awareness, but none of them had Demolitions or Security, so I decided they couldn't really pick up on whatever subtle hints I'm not well versed enough in structural engineering to know about would indicate various walls had been weakened for an ambush.

 

My Navigator had Improved Warp Sense, so he got to test to see if he felt the power go off (similar to how Paranoia works) which he failed, and then my RT and Arch-Militant both passed their Rapid Reaction test to act normally. Plus side, the Arch-Militant immediately realised what was going on and got to yell "They're coming outta the **** walls!"

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