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Gregor Eisenhorn

Running Forgotten Gods

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I'll be running Forgotten Gods at some point this November after we finish our current Only War campaign (GMed by one of my players). I've taken the group through Dark Pursuits and Desolation of the Dead and it's been interesting to say the least. I've been doing a lot of planning and prep work and I plan on sharing some of the stuff here as people might find it useful to use themselves or as a source of inspiration. Before I do that I was wondering if anyone here has run Forgotten Gods, what their experiences were and if they had any advice pertaining to the campaign in general?

 

(This is a cross-post from Roll for Heresy)

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From this point on, all my posts in this thread will contain spoilers. If you're a player and not a GM you really shouldn't be in here anyway, shoo now!

 

My group has been through both Dark Pursuits and Desolation of the Dead. Both campaigns were very enjoyable experiences and there were several standout moments which helped establish my players' MO when it comes to conducting their investigations into heresy. They are a classic Ordo Hereticus warband and as such, their Inquisitor is a Witch Hunter. The party consists of:

 

1. Natalia Kolchak - A former Adeptus Arbites Investigator from the Hive World of Scintilla. Favours her trusty shotgun, the ' Roar of Justice' which was awarded to her by the Arbites Marshall at Port Gyre following the incident with the escaped daemonhost. She's become the defacto group leader who the other characters naturally look to when a decision needs to be made and is likely to become the Inquisitor's next Interrogator. The events of Dark Pursuits and Desolation of the Dead however have already started to take a toll on her sanity...

 

2. Thaddeus Apoloyon - A former Imperial Guard medic from a feral world and has a dark past. This guy is hard as nails with his TB of 4 and Carapace armour and is a phenomenal medic. However, he was brutally boiled alive with his own blood by a herald of Nurgle the party did battle with in the bowels of Desoleum's Underhive which caused his heart to burst and his eyes to pop. He is currently undergoing surgery, hopefully the Inquisitor can source him some good bionic replacements. Additionally he was psycho-indoctrinated with all the common lore in the Imperium at the end of Dark Pursuits because I, as a GM didn't know any better and let the player take the talent that allows you to do that when he asked for it. Never again....

 

3. Ezekiel Godwin - The outcast assassin. Actually born with a silver spoon in his mouth, his noble family was disgraced when he was a child and spent his life growing up in the underhive of Scintilla. An incredibly unlucky individual, he brings his bad luck into the field and actually manages to curse his opponents with it as he slices them up his chain-sword (something he is very good at doing). As it fit his character's backstory, I secretly gave the character the 'Untouchable' elite advance, leaving hints that this was the case when certain things happened (or indeed, didn't happen) to Ezekiel. It made for a very entertaining experience for the players and was done so I could, if needed, make the fight with the daemonhost at the end of Dark Pursuits a little easier. Alas, since discovering he was an Untouchable, the player isn't really interested in pursuing it further which is fair enough...I imagine he wishes he would have decided differently at the end of Forgotten Gods but we will see. In retrospect, whilst it made for some really good roleplay moments, in the future I will hold a secret discussion with the character's player about doing such a thing (I didn't that time, because I wanted him to enjoy the reveal as well).

 

4. Father Lucindia. Yes, the priest ended up rolling a girl's name. This character was amazing (played by the strongest roleplayer in the group) and was actually a bit of a thorn in the party's side. This guy did not get subtlety (it was hilarious having the player apologize for what Lucindia was about to do next). Lucindia's stand out moments include burning down Lan's Guljian's mansion in Dark Pursuits, then burning down the Screaming Wheel (the bar in the second part of the adventure) as well as whipping up the 'peasants' in Desolation of the Dead into a frenzy to go and march upon suspected heretics that the group was trying to silently follow. He then proceeded to insult Oath-Captain Kaytian Nils and her teams paltry shrine to the Emperor at Purity Gate and cracked one of the Enforcers (who was sleeping in his bunk) over the head with a baton after the Enforcer sleepily told him to leave him alone whilst Lucindia was waking everyone up to get them praying. A short fist fight ensued and it resulted in Officer Nils kicking the acolytes out of Purity Gate, meaning they had to go and find lodgings elsewhere in the Gallowsway (of course, they chose the crime scene with the mass murder). A very annoyed Thaddeus ended up trying to kill Father Lucindia in his sleep but only succeed in hacking one Lucindia's legs off before the other members restrained him. Lucinida was rushed to Cog Lostok's surgery where he remained for the rest of the campaign. The player was tired of playing Lucindia and wanted someone who wasn't always making life difficult for the group with his religious beliefs, so ended up rolling up a Gunslinger who the party came across in Gantry. The Gunslinger, Floyd has seen little game time so far, so not much can be said about him other than he's really not that good of a shot... As for Lucindia, he'll be making a surprise appearance later (as the character's been retired early, I retain the right to use him as an NPC) as the missionary who comes to the rescue of the acolytes out in the wastes during the events of Forgotten Gods.

 

The Inquisitor is called Mathias Volkmar and is basically Inquisitor Toth from Dawn of War 1, re-imagined as a Witch Hunter. A former Amalithian, he's a recent convert to the mono-dominant belief and whilst he's generally considered a Puritan, he's not so Ultra-Puritan that it borders on Radicalism (he recognizes that in certain, controlled circumstances, psykers are a necessary tool for the Imperium to use. Without Navigators or Astropaths for example, the Imperium would cease to function and was not the Emperor himself a psyker?).

 

In case it wasn't clear already, the acolytes' subtelty score is not great despite their efforts and currently sits below 30 at the end of the events of Desolation of the Dead (on the bright side at least, they managed to get back into Kaytian Nils' good books!). As a result of this, as well as the factor that it's become clear that there is a lot of Heresy on Desoleum as well as the Askellon Sector as a whole thanks to the well known lack of any Inquisitorial presence, the Inquisitor has decided to go public and start instilling fear in the hearts of the people with a public burning. This is the first PDF my players will get to read as part of the 'between campaign downtime':

 


 

This act by the Inquisitor has several effects:

1. The subtlety score has been reduced to 20, going into Forgotten Gods.

2. Some heretical cults have gone into hiding, others have armed themselves accordingly and as such will be better armed and armoured (The smugglers of the Trade Sable in particular are in particular going to be extra-armed).

3. Imperial Support has improved now that the Inquisition is a known factor. Requisitioning items and gaining support from the various branches of the Adeptus on Desoleum will now be easier.

 

(On a personal note, I was really glad to find an official piece of Artwork which looked like the Inquisitor and Natalia standing side-by-side. I just edited the Inquistor's skin to be darker).

 

As part of this, the Inquisitor has decided to set up a small Inquisitorial Bastion and residence on Desoleum. In Dark Pursuits, the players secured accommodation at a posh, Upper Hive hotel called 'The Emperor's Radiance'. The Inquisitor decided to buy out the hotel as well as the surrounding porperty and began converting it (on the inside) to become his residence and a bastion of the Inquisition. This was a process which occurred throughout Desolation of the Dead and the intervening downtime and is now ready for player use. Here is the article I'm providing my players detailing the rules for their new home as well as a description of what it looks like so they can imagine what they were up to during downtime:

 

The Emperor's Radiance I created this using the 'Create a Mission Hub' fan supplement by Enentol. 

 

That's it for now, there's lot more to come. Hopefully this provides some inspiration to folks :)

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