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Possibly Stupid Questions from Someone new to the WH40K Universe

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So as the topic says, I'm relatively new to the Warhammer 40K universe, having never been much into miniatures games. Though reading Dark Heresy 2nd edition I am finding my interest piqued and as a long standing GM of other games am looking to find out more about rules and setting.

My first real question about a rule is regarding corruption points and removal. The methods of removal seem extremely difficult, and the consequences of gaining too much corruption severe.

How harmful to the setting of Warhammer 40K if it were easier to remove corruption from your character? Like spending a year in prayer or holistic exercise on a shrine world? Or is the near permenance of corruption integral to the themes of the game?

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The permenance of corruption points is integral, at some point your character will be retired from play. However, the pace of gaining corruption point is up to the game master, and it could be so slow that it is a non-issue. But the game will be more interesting if all your players accept that in this setting they will eventually go corrupt.

 

The Warhammer 40K theme is a bit the inevitable doom where the heroes are fighting hard to slow down its arrival. This spirit of perseverance and refusing to surrender gives this game a special feeling.

Edited by Alox

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It's like Call of Cthulhu "IN SPACE!"TM with a bit more in the way of safeguarding your inevitable doom. It's important that it happens, that the characters have a slow, or fast, decline into insanity and corruption. While you can lower it a little, you'll never be rid of it completely.

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It really depends on how much of an impact you *want* it to have on your games. The risk of corruption has a definite place in the setting for Chaos to be as dangerous and insidious as it is, and thus for the Imperium to "justify" some of the more extreme measures.

 

That being said, whether it should actually affect the protagonists is up to you. FFG's Deathwatch RPG skipped on corruption almost entirely, even though Space Marines falling from grace and turning against their creators is a major point in the setting's history. However, DW is a more "heroic" kind of game than Dark Heresy, so in a way it makes sense to steer its focus towards slaying aliens and daemons rather than bothering with such "detractive" effects on the player characters.

 

Personally, I like the concept of corruption in a game, as it adds to the feeling of "inevitable doom" that Alox mentioned, but to say that you MUST have it in your campaign would be an exaggeration. It simply depends on how much of a hero or a normal person you believe your player characters should be - the 40k setting is full of all kinds of heroes who never got corrupted, and depending on the type of character and their background, it makes more sense for some than others.

 

Also, don't shy back from adjusting the rules for gaining and removing corruption to suit your group's consensus. This is your game, after all, and whether or not the RAW speed of corruption gain makes sense depends a lot on how fast or how slow time moves during and in-between your campaigns.

Edited by Lynata

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How harmful to the setting of Warhammer 40K if it were easier to remove corruption from your character? Like spending a year in prayer or holistic exercise on a shrine world? Or is the near permenance of corruption integral to the themes of the game?

 

Corruption is a constant threat that is both insidious and overt in the setting. It is the temptation of Chaos and the Ruinious Powers, and threatens even the most stalwart of humanities defenders (read: The Adeptus Astartes). In the canon of the setting, it is argueably the most potent danger the Imperium faces - it's own darkness turned manifest.

 

With that said, the canon is also built on paragons of faith to whom the corruptive forces consider Anatheme. Grey Knights, Sisters of Battle, the one True Faith of the Imperium and the protection of the God-Emperor all merit consideration. Duty and Sacrifice are noble virtues where idealogies that espouse self and freedom from servitude reviled. 

 

In the Imperium of Man, atonement through trial, flaggelation and penitent servitude or penitent crusades are all viable ways to fight against the corruption of body and spirit. To mechanically represent this by permitting ways to reduce or remove Corruption will not damage the setting. It is the denial of what we consider bedrocks of modern humanity that the setting is built upon (along with other setting invocative traits such as the loss of knowledge, dystopia and the threat of annihilation) that is important to preserve. I.e. The cost of one own's humanity in service to Him-Upon-The-Throne to save Man, not men. 

 

In simple terms - Feel free to invent ways to reduce or remove corruption. It doesn't harm the setting one bit. 

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Thank you. I don't want to remove the corruption system completly nor make it easy to reduce corruption. I just wanted to possibly be able to slow down the characters eventual fall into depravity and evil.

 

I was thinking of something like 1 year spent in holy prayer/communion/ etc on a shrine world etc per cumulative point of corruption to be removed (1 year for the first, 2 for the second (for a total of 3), and so on.)

 

New question about the Orders. How much interaction and management/coordination do the Ordo Malleus, Ordo Xenos, and Ordo Hereticus have? Some threats are obviously more the baliwyck of a specific order but what kind of hierarchy exists to determine whether a specific threat or instance is the purview of an Inquisitor of each Order? Also does an Inquistor's acolytes have to be of the same order as their master?

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Each Inquisitor, regardless of Ordo, is autonomous in authority and operation. Conclaves do exist (such as the central offices of the Terran Inquisition, or the Calixian Conclave based upon Scintilla), but these still tend to skirt the line of informal offices.

 

The Inquisitor's acolytes are generally recruited from like-minded individuals in personality and/or motivational drive, or be sheer merit of usefullness despite one's station. Beliefs change in the field, and it's not uncommon for acolytes to become divorced from their master's idealogies through exposure to the horrors of the 41st Millennium. 

 

Ultimately, it's about as much cooperation or disorder you wish for your story. Either way works. 

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Thank you. I don't want to remove the corruption system completly nor make it easy to reduce corruption. I just wanted to possibly be able to slow down the characters eventual fall into depravity and evil.

 

I was thinking of something like 1 year spent in holy prayer/communion/ etc on a shrine world etc per cumulative point of corruption to be removed (1 year for the first, 2 for the second (for a total of 3), and so on.)

 

New question about the Orders. How much interaction and management/coordination do the Ordo Malleus, Ordo Xenos, and Ordo Hereticus have? Some threats are obviously more the baliwyck of a specific order but what kind of hierarchy exists to determine whether a specific threat or instance is the purview of an Inquisitor of each Order? Also does an Inquistor's acolytes have to be of the same order as their master?

 

First point, where's the downside in this? Are you going to make age effect the stats of the character? Or are you going to make sure the galaxy moves on without them making possible issues they could've handled two years ago more dangerous after they've had times to take route?

 

Secondly not much for small/general threats. For large scale invasion a lot. Sometimes you'll find more interaction with Ordo Hereticus with the other two than you'll see with Xenos and Malleus. Generally (for me) Hereticus is called then depending on how that threat pans out they may call in back up. As for acolytes and ordos. Most acolytes don't do the political power playing that is Inquisitorial politicing. Some may have personal beliefs and eventually if they're proved useful they may be contacted for joining with particular ordos. Some chose different ordos than their patron some don't, and it depends on the inquisitor if that's a problem or not. Some may never choose an ordo and that's ok too.

 

Some inquisitors may find it useful to have contacts in the various ordos for the sake of information gathering.

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Yeah, even the Ordos are not actually organisations, but merely semi-official alliances and webs of shared influence connecting Inquisitors with compatible interests. By definition, an Inquisitor should work independently, but the reality of M41 is that the act of Inquisitors initiating new members into the fold has led to contacts and affiliations being "inherited" rather than being a temporary thing, so once-tiny cells of Inquisitors cooperating for a mutual goal have, over thousands of years, grown into established interest groups holding tremendous influence, and often competing furiously with other such groups.

 

Of course, that does not mean that any Inquisitor must be affiliated with an Ordo, for they still have a choice - it's just that most Inquisitors are likely to follow the steps of the one who recruited them, both because they've already worked in this specialised field for so long, as well as out of sheer respect and to continue benefiting from these established contacts.

 

For further information, I recommend the section "How the Inquisition operates" from Gav Thorpe's Thorian Sourcebook, once hosted on GW's website but still available from darkreign.org here. Note that some of its contents may conflict with the setting as portrayed by Dark Heresy (in particular Acolytes in GW's version of the setting being firmly attached to their Inquisitors rather than operating on their own), but most of the material should be compatible and provide good inspiration for how the Inquisition might function.

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I personally think that how hard corruption is to remove in the Dark Heresy 2 is overcompensation for how easy it was to get rid of in Dark Heresy 1 & Rogue Trader.   I think they should have found a nice middle ground like removal by spending experince but make it really expensive like 1000xp per point.

Edited by GaiusIuliusCaesar

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I personally think that how hard corruption is to remove in the Dark Heresy 2 is overcompensation for how easy it was to get rid of in Dark Heresy 1 & Rogue Trader.   I think they should have found a nice middle ground like removal by spending experince but make it really expensive like 1000xp per point.

I could be mistaken but if my memory serves in DH1 you could not remove corruption whatsoever. But insanity could be removed by 100xp per point. I didn't play RT so I am not sure on that one.

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I could be mistaken but if my memory serves in DH1 you could not remove corruption whatsoever.

 

At least at first, yeah - but I believe one of the FFG sourcebooks (Ascension?) added options to do so. iirc it was about the character going into seclusion and flagellating themselves etc, with the effect that you'd trade Corruption Points for Insanity Points at some ratio.

 

[edit] Yep, found it. Ascension p.12 - you can remove Corruption by spending XP, by sacrificing Characteristics, or by swapping it for Insanity. At the recommended rate of 50-100 XP per CP, that is pretty easy, though ofc it's still up to the GM which of these three methods they allow, if any.

Edited by Lynata

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No conversion guide exists, but if your familiar with the system it's fairly easy to convert most material - although you have to keep in mind there is no easy way to make lateral conversions. You'll have to watch out for the difficult bumps (Unnatural traits, psychic powers, etc), but otherwise the process is fairly easy and not too time consuming.

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Yeah, I'd expect it to be no different than converting between DH, RT, DW, OW and BC. It's still the same underlying d100 system, with the same effects for characteristics ranges. Just take a look and make sure that the stats are still in line with the rest of the material of the ruleset you intend to use it in. Looking up comparable gear and NPCs should suffice for a rough check.  :)

Edited by Lynata

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Fluff wise easy to transfer, for the most part stat blocks are similar, the issue comes into psychic powers and skills and talents they've been combined or removed completely you'd have to compare the npc to what exists in DH2.

 

There are no ranks in DH2 its the aptitude system from OW.

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Most thing transfer fine, the issues is where things just used to be flat ie felling which was changed to felling(x), and changing unnatural charecteristics from multipliers to flat numbers.  We are playing a Ascension level game now and this how we work it. In general  a unnatural 2x multiplier should be changed to unnatural(4).  This works out for two reasons, space marines typically gaing 4 toughness bonus from their unnatural multiplier at charecter creation, and unnatural(2x) gave 2 extra successes, which is what unnatural(4) gives now.   Now there are exceptions where the gm may want to fine tune things.  As far as skills, just roll them into what ever is appropriate.

 

The single biggest problem you are going to run into is that for dark heresy 1 stuff, exp cost is set alot cheaper.  DH2 raised the cost of things alot higher then DH1, where 90% of things were 100 or 200  xp, and had to be pretty powerful to cost more then that.

 

Ranks are mixed bag,  aptitudes allow for alot more custom charecters but makes certain thing you charecter should have alot more expensive.  I personally think that DH2 should have kept ranks, maybe not as large a list, but kept them for role essential stuff that doesn't match their aptitudes, and kept the aptitude system to provide costs for buying elite advances.

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I have a quick chainsword question. How much of your turn is used for starting it?

 

I'd treat it as a "Ready" action, so Half a turn. This is for unsheathing it and equipping it in a hand.

 

If you already have it in your hand, then starting it would be a Free Action and part or part of the attack, as it's really just pressing down a lever you already have your fingers on.

 

Unless your character has some sort of archaic chainsword that has to be started by pulling a belt, I suppose. ;)

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New question about reverse compatibility: How compatible/which games translate easiest to DH2nd of the other lines (Black Crusade, Only War, etc?)

New question on psykers: Are the powers in the DH2nd the only ones? Or do other supplements have new trees?

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The newer the line the easier time you'll have with conversion. But OW and BC are very much like DH2.

 

Well DH2 doesn't have any substantial supplement yet, but I wouldn't put it past them to put a few new powers (probably not trees) in the upcoming book.

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