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Marcus102

Why the hell did I say that

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Just going to say this up front, first time GM. During my last session I had a major NPC casually mention that a minor NPC was a spy. It was intended that he was sent to spy on the major NPC but the RT asked why Battlefleet Calixis would want to spy on him (the RT not the major NPC) and I went with it. Long story short the PCs want to actively hunt inquisitors, the meta-plot revolving around the Tzetchien cult endemic to the RT's remaining holdings has been reduced to short term side-plot territory, and the mid-term plan for the Imperial Navy invading the webway is a distant memory. What do I do now?

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It was all Tzeentch's fault. A powerful cult Magus turned several NPCs into pawns to throw the group off his trail, and allow him to finish corrupting their holdings before triggering a cataclysmic collapse. Turning them against righteous Agents of the Throne was a bonus. Expect the group to be violently disabused of their delusions at the hands of an enraged Malleus Inquisitor Lord heading up a Black Fleet; with regiments of Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, requisitioned Astra Militarum and Astartes forces, and several worse things only at the disposal of the Ordo Malleus. No matter how bad the group thinks they are, the Malleus always have the last word and no one in the Imperium can gainsay them. Survival most definitely not guaranteed.

Edited by ViperMagnum357

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Great idea, one problem though (my fault for not being more specific).

 

1.The inquisitors are Hereticus.

2.The Tzeentch cult is loyal to the dynasty (that's why they killed the previous RT, it's the only reason the dynasty still has 25 profit factor left).

3A.The closest the cult has to a magus is better suited for covering the party's retreat by burning the souls of their pursuers (and singeing hers in the process) then manipulating minds

3B.Then again when 1 in 1000 members of the cult/armed-forces-of-the-dynasty is a trained battle psyker, they can't all be pyromancers can they?

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Hoo boy...what a mess. Your group is going to have to pull off the 40k equivalent of a political fumblerooski; If they have already lost a bunch of profit factor and are using psykers so openly, you can bet there are sharks circling. Other dynasties will take one look and assume they are teetering on the precipice of heresy, and be getting ready to pounce-with a story of your guilt ready to hand over to the authorities for post-facto legitimacy. Assuming you do not want to play through an excommunicated dynasty, you need to do something about those cultists fast-even if they are personally loyal, they will end up as no more than pawns in one of Tzeentch's schemes to corrupt them all. You need to figure out a way to kill them all without razing whatever is left of your resources; deploying them planetside under false pretenses then vaporizing them with an orbital strike is an old Malleus standby for tainted troops-a good place to start.

 

That first part of my above post is something your players will have to sell to the Ordo Hereticus, after burying the hatchet. With that much smoke, there will be Inquisitors poking around looking for a fire. Convincing a Hereticus Inquisitor to sign off on an internal purge should hopefully allay interest from the Ordo Malleus and keep them from taking an interest. Hereticus types tend to be straightforward and are less likely to go digging through a case that seems closed. Whatever you do, your group is complicit in chaos activity, which is a death warrant by any Malleus Inquisitor, and they will dig to to bottom and find everything a Hereticus Inquisitor would gloss over or take for granted. Remember you have essentially no chance of fooling a Malleus Inquisitor-the few that are not powerful psykers employ them as standard, and they have means and influence beyond any other group in the Imperium. With the Malleus Remit, they can exert complete power and judgment over your dynasty, anywhere, beyond even the reach of the High Lords of Terra, and no one can countermand their orders. If a Malleus Inquisitor looks at this dynasty, they will all be declared Excommunicate Traitoris, and then you are playing Black Crusade. So, talk with your players before the next session and figure out which way they want to take this. If they want to continue this campaign without going completely renegade, they will need to clean house, then pull a fast one on the Ordo Hereticus in order to keep the Ordo Malleus from taking an interest. Done right, it could be an excellent Grand Endeavor, racing against the clock to save their house from certain destruction.

Edited by ViperMagnum357

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Wow, that is detailed and would derail my campaign more than it already is. Time for a campaign info drop.

1. The battle psyker squads are authorized by a Lord Inquisitor (Xenos and now dead but still.)

2. The (dead) hereticus inquisitor was newly minted and trying to make a name for himself by proving that the RT's colony system used to be in the Segmentum Obscurus.

3. Unless things go horribly, horribly, wrong, showing anyone who follows up should be satisfied with the PCs having found his rosette in the trophy room if a pirate ship they captured.

4. The RT's colony system (formerly known as Prospero) is the only thing keeping them more afluent than a large hive gang.

5. If Maleus get involved the PCs are screwed, mainly because as their dynasty's fleet stands they will need the addition of a cruiser to deal with the IN pirate hunters stationed in system without loosing half of their meager fleet.

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Didn't Prospero get completely razed shortly after the Heresy? Like Cthonia, where the Luna Wolves were sourced?

 

The cult is doomed. Get as far away from them as possible before your house gets tainted by the proximity. Malleus will go after everyone in your organization, all your contacts, neighbors, pets, etc. and put a sanctified bolt shell in everyone just to be sure there is no heresy... assuming the Malleus inquisitor follows the rules. Maybe they are Radical, and hoping to exploit. Even then, they will virtually always kill all the witnesses, eventually. Exceptions being high level cronies, which might not be a bad angle for the party to take, at least to stay alive a few more sessions.

 

battle psykers are also doomed if malleus gets a sniff. They don't respect any other Ordo and will commence with the burning and purging for unsanctioned use of psychic powers. The inquisitor signing the authorization is dead, and therefore cannot exert any influence. Malleus will almost certainly claim it is a fake, and who in the Inquisition can corroborate the paperwork? All they will see is another Rogue Trader trafficking with the ruinous powers for his own gain, potentially working with a cell of radical Ordo Xenos Inquisitors to feign legitimacy. The only body licensed to produce psykers is the Collegia Psykana, which is part of the reason for the black ships, so, at minimum, your party is guilty of failing to turn over known psykers for collection, which is still a torchable offence.

 

Your party needs to swerve, and swerve hard... you have the influence of a hive gang and the Holy Ordos know your name as a possible heretic. Burn out the cult, with Ordo Hereticus if possible to make Malleus less interested, as suggested above, then that party needs to run for the wilderness space for a few years, let things chill out. Find a forgotten colony and repurpose them into a new base, start rebuilding the PF lost burning out the cult.

 

**40K Battlestar Remake!!!!**

Edited by Keeper151

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Just going to say this up front, first time GM. During my last session I had a major NPC casually mention that a minor NPC was a spy. It was intended that he was sent to spy on the major NPC but the RT asked why Battlefleet Calixis would want to spy on him (the RT not the major NPC) and I went with it. Long story short the PCs want to actively hunt inquisitors, the meta-plot revolving around the Tzetchien cult endemic to the RT's remaining holdings has been reduced to short term side-plot territory, and the mid-term plan for the Imperial Navy invading the webway is a distant memory. What do I do now?

 

 

Great idea, one problem though (my fault for not being more specific).

 

1.The inquisitors are Hereticus.

2.The Tzeentch cult is loyal to the dynasty (that's why they killed the previous RT, it's the only reason the dynasty still has 25 profit factor left).

3A.The closest the cult has to a magus is better suited for covering the party's retreat by burning the souls of their pursuers (and singeing hers in the process) then manipulating minds

3B.Then again when 1 in 1000 members of the cult/armed-forces-of-the-dynasty is a trained battle psyker, they can't all be pyromancers can they?

 

 

Wow, that is detailed and would derail my campaign more than it already is. Time for a campaign info drop.

1. The battle psyker squads are authorized by a Lord Inquisitor (Xenos and now dead but still.)

2. The (dead) hereticus inquisitor was newly minted and trying to make a name for himself by proving that the RT's colony system used to be in the Segmentum Obscurus.

3. Unless things go horribly, horribly, wrong, showing anyone who follows up should be satisfied with the PCs having found his rosette in the trophy room if a pirate ship they captured.

4. The RT's colony system (formerly known as Prospero) is the only thing keeping them more afluent than a large hive gang.

5. If Maleus get involved the PCs are screwed, mainly because as their dynasty's fleet stands they will need the addition of a cruiser to deal with the IN pirate hunters stationed in system without loosing half of their meager fleet.

 

I love this setup! It's a glorious mess full of different interests and ideals that are conflicting into a situation where there really is no good solution. I think your players are in for making some really hard decisions, and I would love to GM this, especially since the players have pretty much made their own rather uncomfortable bed.

Let's see if I can sort out the setting of the stage:

- There is a colony system (formerly Prospero) that are the main source of income for the RTs.

- There is a heavy tzeentchian influence in this system, and that cult supports the RTers. (I'm curious about how widespread and accepted the cult is in the system. Are people openly members? Is it generally known that this is a Tzeenchian cult, or does it present as an Imperial cult or something else? Are nobles, capitalists and other powerful individuals members? Is it the official state religion? What is the Imperial Ecclesiastic presence like?)

- The population of this system has a higher than normal rate of psykers. (and maybe a higher social acceptance of psykers as well?)

So the system has a formalised force of battle psykers as part of their PDF. These are not qualified by the Collegiana Psykana, and would probably never be because of the tzeenchian influence.

- These battle psykers is OKed by a now dead Ordo Xenos Lord Inquisitor. (Does she still have powerful successors or former allies in the area? Does her name still hold power? If so, this might not be such a horrible problem.)

- The RTers killed a fresh Ordo Hereticus Inquisitor that was on their trail. They are planning blame it on the pirates of the sector, and it would very likely work.

- The RTers believe that the Battlefleet Calixis is spying on them. (a very reasonable and likely idea after all)

- The RTers are afraid of the Ordo Malleus (a very reasonable feeling)

- The players want to hunt Inquisitors.

 

A population with such a high level of psykers is potentially a very valuable resource. It is also potentially very dangerous. I would look at the different factions and powerful NPCs in the sector and try to find three of them that would want to use this resource in different ways that require the RTers cooperation to get. Then let these factions court the RTers so the players gain some agency. Here are some ideas:

* Any influential person in the region that is already pledged to Tzeench and that wants to support this uniqe enclave. If the RTers can nurture trust there, they will of course have the option of selling _them_ out to the Inquisition. This allegiance could be applied as a modifier to many of the people in the following list.

* A radical Inquisitor. Someone from Ordo Malleus would like to study the development of a Tzeenchian Cult in its natural habitat, and this is a rather remote and worthless system so the risks are limited. She offers a truce and 400 years of leniency in exchange for the right to place spies and take part of census data.

* A former interrogator of the Inq Lord that OKed the formation of battle psykers is now a Xenos Inquisitor in her own right. She knows about the system from her master and has a clever plan where she needs a large source of psykers to experiment with cerating a network that will mimic a hive mind. She believes they be able to detect the psycic beacon from Genestealer Cults so she can more easily hunt them down before the Tyranids arrive. For this she needs a steady supply of psykers...

* A rogue trader who catches and sells psykers to the dark eldar fighting arenas.

* A planetary governor who has done a very bad job of tracking and catching psykers in their own system (or maybe there are unusually few psykers in that population? Is it because of a Khorne influence or maybe a null/blank-mutation?). So they need to buy your psykers to fill their quota to the Black Ships who are arriving soon. If they don't they will be under uncomfortable Inquisitorial scrutiny.

* A conquering Imperial general who is looking for an honourable target for their invasion forces. So far they had a somewhat successful campaign and claimed a few planets, but met no real combat opposition. Garrisoning planets and two decades without actual combat has left the army weak, so the general fears she will not be able to claim a glorious victory to her familys name... unless they get help from insiders of course! They can offer the RTers a not-chaos infected planet with a better location in exchange for their help to do the actual invasion of former Prospero.

* A powerful pirate/free trader captain that is looking for a safe harbour to have as home base in the sector. An alliance with the RTs would be excellent, because the RTs can buy shady stuff from them and then sell them on legally in official harbours.

And so on...

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I love this setup! It's a glorious mess full of different interests and ideals that are conflicting into a situation where there really is no good solution. I think your players are in for making some really hard decisions, and I would love to GM this, especially since the players have pretty much made their own rather uncomfortable bed.

Let's see if I can sort out the setting of the stage:

- There is a colony system (formerly Prospero) that are the main source of income for the RTs.

- There is a heavy tzeentchian influence in this system, and that cult supports the RTers. (I'm curious about how widespread and accepted the cult is in the system. Are people openly members? Is it generally known that this is a Tzeenchian cult, or does it present as an Imperial cult or something else? Are nobles, capitalists and other powerful individuals members? Is it the official state religion? What is the Imperial Ecclesiastic presence like?)

- The population of this system has a higher than normal rate of psykers. (and maybe a higher social acceptance of psykers as well?)

So the system has a formalised force of battle psykers as part of their PDF. These are not qualified by the Collegiana Psykana, and would probably never be because of the tzeenchian influence.

- These battle psykers is OKed by a now dead Ordo Xenos Lord Inquisitor. (Does she still have powerful successors or former allies in the area? Does her name still hold power? If so, this might not be such a horrible problem.)

- The RTers killed a fresh Ordo Hereticus Inquisitor that was on their trail. They are planning blame it on the pirates of the sector, and it would very likely work.

- The RTers believe that the Battlefleet Calixis is spying on them. (a very reasonable and likely idea after all)

- The RTers are afraid of the Ordo Malleus (a very reasonable feeling)

- The players want to hunt Inquisitors.

I will now be correcting what you got wrong with that summery.

  • There isn't a Tzeentchian influence in the system, the Tzeentchian influence is what allowed the RT's grandfather to survive falling into the warp storms that surround the system.
  • Yes members are openly accepted, no they don't know that it is a Tzeentch cult, they just believe it to be the idiosyncrasies of a death cult founded by a former Cadian heavy infantry regiment that has grown in influence from "regiment of house troops" to "hereditary cast of people who are in charge of any weaponry larger than personal defense (eg. a civilian firearm) and smaller than shipboard ordinance with the exception of high level officers.
  • Not the system (though it may stem from that) the entirety of the RT's armed forces have a higher than average rate of psykers.
  • Again, not the system, the PDF are a subgroup of the cult.
  • They are not planning to blame the death on pirates, that is what actually happened.
  • I wanted the Battlefleet to be spying on the IN captain, going with them that spy was spying on them and working for the inquisition is the reason for this thread.
  • Less of a hunt and more of a "why are they spying on us" mission witch requires that they find one first.

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I will now be correcting what you got wrong with that summery.

  • There isn't a Tzeentchian influence in the system, the Tzeentchian influence is what allowed the RT's grandfather to survive falling into the warp storms that surround the system.
  • Yes members are openly accepted, no they don't know that it is a Tzeentch cult, they just believe it to be the idiosyncrasies of a death cult founded by a former Cadian heavy infantry regiment that has grown in influence from "regiment of house troops" to "hereditary cast of people who are in charge of any weaponry larger than personal defense (eg. a civilian firearm) and smaller than shipboard ordinance with the exception of high level officers.
  • Not the system (though it may stem from that) the entirety of the RT's armed forces have a higher than average rate of psykers.
  • Again, not the system, the PDF are a subgroup of the cult.
  • They are not planning to blame the death on pirates, that is what actually happened.
  • I wanted the Battlefleet to be spying on the IN captain, going with them that spy was spying on them and working for the inquisition is the reason for this thread.
  • Less of a hunt and more of a "why are they spying on us" mission witch requires that they find one first.

 

 

Oh I see! thanks for that info. Then they are indeed in trouble, as they can't really just get rid of their house troops that easily.

 

I believe the story would benefit from the RTers getting a few powerful contacts that wants to cooperate with them, or simply use them. That way they can actually have a possibility to spy on an Inquisitor and maybe gather something that can turn out to be useful as a manipulating tool or information to trade with if someone takes too much interest in their psykers.

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I will now be correcting what you got wrong with that summery.

  • There isn't a Tzeentchian influence in the system, the Tzeentchian influence is what allowed the RT's grandfather to survive falling into the warp storms that surround the system.
  • Yes members are openly accepted, no they don't know that it is a Tzeentch cult, they just believe it to be the idiosyncrasies of a death cult founded by a former Cadian heavy infantry regiment that has grown in influence from "regiment of house troops" to "hereditary cast of people who are in charge of any weaponry larger than personal defense (eg. a civilian firearm) and smaller than shipboard ordinance with the exception of high level officers.
  • Not the system (though it may stem from that) the entirety of the RT's armed forces have a higher than average rate of psykers.
  • Again, not the system, the PDF are a subgroup of the cult.
  • They are not planning to blame the death on pirates, that is what actually happened.
  • I wanted the Battlefleet to be spying on the IN captain, going with them that spy was spying on them and working for the inquisition is the reason for this thread.
  • Less of a hunt and more of a "why are they spying on us" mission witch requires that they find one first.

 

 

Oh I see! thanks for that info. Then they are indeed in trouble, as they can't really just get rid of their house troops that easily.

 

I believe the story would benefit from the RTers getting a few powerful contacts that wants to cooperate with them, or simply use them. That way they can actually have a possibility to spy on an Inquisitor and maybe gather something that can turn out to be useful as a manipulating tool or information to trade with if someone takes too much interest in their psykers.

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