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The Laughing God

Acid drooling Space Marines: like or not?

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Attila-IV said:

 how come our marines can't spit acid/eat people in the war game?"

 

Because the acid is going to do less than the weapons the Space Marine is usually carrying, especially when there are two layers of armour between the Space Marine and his target. Why do you think that 'acid' must mean 'very strong acid' ?

 

I don't have Deathwatch yet, but looking at the DW character sheet tells me that the acids only use in combat is to blind foes. Unnatural Strength means that an unarmed Space Marine will be doing more damage with his fists than he could with the acid, and that's before taking Unarmed Master into account.

 

If the acid were strong enough to be something they used regularly in battle then I would have a problem. But with the acid being a weaker one I don't have any complaints.

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Bilateralrope said:

Attila-IV said:

 

 how come our marines can't spit acid/eat people in the war game?"

 

 

Because the acid is going to do less than the weapons the Space Marine is usually carrying, especially when there are two layers of armour between the Space Marine and his target. Why do you think that 'acid' must mean 'very strong acid' ?

 

I don't have Deathwatch yet, but looking at the DW character sheet tells me that the acids only use in combat is to blind foes. Unnatural Strength means that an unarmed Space Marine will be doing more damage with his fists than he could with the acid, and that's before taking Unarmed Master into account.

 

If the acid were strong enough to be something they used regularly in battle then I would have a problem. But with the acid being a weaker one I don't have any complaints.

The recent novel Soul Hunter has a scene where the central character, a Night Lord Astartes, (during the Heresy era) spits acid in the face of a Callidus Assassin he is struggling in hand to hand combat with (and taking a beating from) - literally burning the eyeballs out of her head. That's fairly significant imo. 

 

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I think the omophagea is going to be a pain in the ass in my DW game. When we ran through the GM Kit adventure, the first thing the guys did to locate the missing general wasn't to ask the local guardsmen. It was to start munching on the kroot they'd just butchered.

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Well, there is always that term "GM's discretion." :D  

Regardless, though, that's one of the reasons that for me the Omaphagea was "Mind Reading (Biological, -5%; Preparation required, 5 minutes, -15%; Costs Fatigue 1, -5%; Racial, -20%; Requires Will roll, -5%; Sensory, +20%; Trigger, consumption of neural tissues, -10%) [18])."   There should have been a "vague" in there as well, but it seems that I opened up an older version of the document.

The general gist of it, however, was that it is a fatiguing process that takes time and introspection as well as the consumption of neural tissues.  It is also not something that can be performed on aliens.  The information that you get back is not "Go left for 20 feet," but rather a rapid collage of disorienting images.

Of course, that's just my solution to it.  Then again I didn't want intelligence gathering missions to become an all-you-can-eat buffet.

Kage

 

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SinisterCheshire said:

Lightbringer said:

 

SinisterCheshire said:

 

The Soul Drinkers are the only chapter I remember making actual use of the Omophagea.  It was something which set them apart from other chapters, in so far as giving them their chapter name.  Even then, it was only fleeting if I remember correctly, like waking up from a dream and having only filiments of a memory to grasp at. 

 

 

The Imperial Fists use it in Ian Watson's "Space Marine" novel. They eat the brains of a Titan crew and then pilot the titan to destroy something not particularly memorable. I remember grinding my teeth in irritation over this whole concept, which rang false on a very large number of levels.  

 

 

I'll have to check that one out. Space Marine is in my stack of books near my bed.  That whole concept is pretty galling, seeing as Space Marines don't generally come equipped with a Mind Impulse Unit to allow them to connect with the Titans machine spirit. I figure the machine spirit might get rather mad at the marines intrusion and possibly blow out his brain if they were to attempt it...

Just as a heads-up:

"Space Marine" by Ian Watson is generally considered no longer canon. It was written during the era of Squats, like much of Ian Watson's works.

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Lightbringer said:

I really can't see how a brain (which is effectively an incredibly complex active collection of neurons combined in a specific order running electrical impulses at the speed of light) can communicate information to someone who's eating it, after death. The very act of consuming the brain would destroy all coherent information from it. It just...wouldn't work. I can buy psychic mindreading, passive observation of a living brain through incredibly sensitive magnetic resonance imaging etc etc...but not brain eating.

Then you have never heard of the experiment where scientists took flatworms and conditioned them to move towards a light source. They then tooks these conditioned flatworms, ground them up, and fed them to a new unconditioned batch. The unconditioned batch then responded to the light source just as the conditioned ones had. It is wild, but it is true.

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Tossing my .02 into the mix, I always envisioned the omno as a way to gather "temporary" knowledge of something the enemy may know based on chemical releases caused by that knowledge.  For instance an enemy being a chemist due to study would not pass that on when the marine eats his brain, but the chemist involved in a plot to release a chem bomb in the middle of a imp base would trigger an adrenaline release associated with that memory, and thereby be easier for a marine to capture that small tidbit of information from the tasty brain meat.  I wouldn't allow the marine player to know the location of the bomb/maguffin, but it would be a prod that they better hurry up.  Or something like that.

Acid spit always makes me remember something I read a long time ago online, not canon, about an ultramarine encountering a crimson fist, new and shiny vs old and battle worn, and the CF spitting on the ground and making the rocks bubble and melt. 

I like it as a means of final defiance, yes space marines really are that mean and nasty and different than all of us regular humans.

 

E

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Kanluwen said:

 

 

Just as a heads-up:

"Space Marine" by Ian Watson is generally considered no longer canon. It was written during the era of Squats, like much of Ian Watson's works.

It might be best to keep the discussion of what is or isn't canon out of it since that is arguably a matter of perspective.  Or, as put elsewhere:

''Fluff' is 2d material given another dimension by time (and, thus, game editions) thereby forming a 3d literary landscape that, as with real landscapes, changes perceived shape for any number of reasons, from viewshed to personal/cultural preferences. This can include occlusion, or the interposition of one element over another (let's call it "Revisionism"), or both can be seen at once and perceived relationships and patterns drawn between them ("Holism?").

Kage

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I'd like to think that the main use of the "acidic drool" might be to break down nearly anything remotely edible into something the marine can consume.  Not likely to come up too often since most Astartes missions are fairly short, but it might be useful.

Of course, this does remind me of an old joke about porn stars always spitting on anything before they put it in their mouths...

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HappyDaze said:

I'd like to think that the main use of the "acidic drool" might be to break down nearly anything remotely edible into something the marine can consume.  Not likely to come up too often since most Astartes missions are fairly short, but it might be useful.

Marines are Brundle-fly? ;)

Kage

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Kage2020 said:

HappyDaze said:

 

I'd like to think that the main use of the "acidic drool" might be to break down nearly anything remotely edible into something the marine can consume.  Not likely to come up too often since most Astartes missions are fairly short, but it might be useful.

 

 

Marines are Brundle-fly? ;)

Kage

It's one 'reasonable' use of the implant.

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HappyDaze said:

 

 

It's one 'reasonable' use of the implant.

Sorry, I wasn't trying to come off as argumentative, just wanting to throw out the appropriate Brundle-fly imagery to that particular concept.  The Betcher's Gland is just one of those organs that I roll my eyes at, but include it because it is an "essential" part to the MArnie ("I'll be back...").

Kage

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I do like how the rules stipulate that now all Chapters have all the glands any longer. Though I do not mind the acid spitting and brain eating, they do seem a bit vile. I recall a Delta Green adventure where the main villain, an old Naza, had a power where he could eat the brain of a victim and know that victims thoughts for a while, before it passed. Strange.

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Acid spitting is like Superman's heat vision, a WTF relic from ages past.  I've never liked the explaination why but it's part of the original fluff so I'll concede.  I agree with many that its uses are so limited in combat they would be last ditch - spitting in the eyes of an enemy, weakening metal, dissolving organics for food.

Genetic Memory is just one of the many tidbits 40k too from Dune (Legions of superwarriors that fight their way across space while serving a God Emperor).

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I like the bletcher's gland, quite strange yes but predictable.

This SM are the ultimate warriors of humanity but before them was the gen-soldier of the emperor (could be seen in the heresy book about the alpha legion) and the tech-barbarian (proto-SM). When earth was at war during the emperor conquest maybe his troops was in need of other source of food supplies. When dealing with the conquest of the galaxy I'm pretty sure that the emperor make everything possible for his SM to find food from all sources possible.

For the Omophagea it's an adaptation of a really old belief of the human specie. Eat the dead to keep their courage, strength, power, memory, souls and skills.

That kind of belief could be found everywhere on earth if looking closely to the history.

It's strange but get in the legend/myth of earth people.

Now imagine a squad in a secret mission, the leader had been killed noone knows anymore the orders, why not take a bite get the objective and continue the mission.

Or a ritual Chapter master nomination, new brother induction in a chapter like the Mortificator or Flesh tearers, maybe eat a "sacred" part of the fallen brother who give his gen-seed, or the ancient chapter master can give the new brother a really good point to begin in hs new life / responsability.

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I've decided that eating intelligent species to gain access to their memories is generally unpleasant and comes with a healthy dose of insanity points. Maybe 10 would keep the abuse of this ability to a minimum.

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So doing it 10 times would lead to your character now having to be handed in because he is unplayable?

Not for me thanks, I don't like punishing my players that much for no reason. Maybe have them take a Willpower test or get a couple of Insanity, but not just go "you eat the brain? 10 insanity kthnx".

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I'm not sure why "brain eating" would particularly be engendering insanity in a group of "people" that regularly go around eviscerating people, drinking blood in rites of initiation or seeing their compatriots turned into ravening man-beasts seemingly at the will of cruel gods.  They're so far past "shell shocked" that the arguments of Merrett (heh, arguments of merit ;)) just seem to fall flat.  Then again, an ale or glass of wine, a bout of musical flatulence or poetry recital, are all things that will make the horrors of battle recede into the distant past.  After all, look at the war poetry of World War I, from Owen's Dulce et Decorum Est to Baldrick's lesser-known, Boom, Boom, Boom.

On the other hand, MArnie's are so awesome that their medics can excise the corrupting influence of the warp in Deathwatch with a scalpel! gui%C3%B1o.gif

Seriously, though, I'm not just seeing that this is something that is going to phase Marines.  If you wanted to throw out the 'ol "It varies from Chapter to Chapter," sure you can argue that the "refined" Ultramarines are going to be less inclined to engage in this activity and, say, the Blood Angels and Space Wolves more so.  This would allow you to have some reasonable limitations while working within the conceit of the game.  (On the other hand, perhaps to the ultra-refined, errr, Ultramarines it truly would be horrifying and worthy of Insanity.)

One might also question for how many missions the MArnies are going to have to get jiggy with the Zombie Kung Fu?

Kage

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Grand Inquisitor Fulminarex said:

Then you have never heard of the experiment where scientists took flatworms and conditioned them to move towards a light source. They then tooks these conditioned flatworms, ground them up, and fed them to a new unconditioned batch. The unconditioned batch then responded to the light source just as the conditioned ones had. It is wild, but it is true.

That IS wild. And fascinating. My friend's Jack Russell terrier is having puppies soon, I might have to conduct my own experiments in this field...demonio.gif

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Unfortunately I believe that they subsequently found that the flatworms in question were following a chemical trail or some such?  Might be confusing my flatworm experiments, though.

Kage

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HappyDaze said:

I'd like to think that the main use of the "acidic drool" might be to break down nearly anything remotely edible into something the marine can consume.  Not likely to come up too often since most Astartes missions are fairly short, but it might be useful.

Of course, this does remind me of an old joke about porn stars always spitting on anything before they put it in their mouths...

This is how I've always envisioned the Betcher's Gland as working.  After all, during their induction marines consume massive quantities of food laced with ceramics and metals in order to strengthen their skeletal system.  They'd need some acidic saliva to start breaking that stuff down and some heavy duty fiber to push that stuff through. 

And Direach made a good point about Brother-Sergeant Priad in Brotherhood of the Snake.  The marine is bitten by a deadly viper while at their homeworld of Ithaka, and his body goes into overdrive as it takes protective measure.  Basically, Priad feels his Betcher's Glands swelling as the viper's toxin is stored there.  Later in the series, Priad is fighting some Dark Eldar and spits the venom into the eyes of an Archon to keep from having his ass handed to him in melee.

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I'm not sure why "brain eating" would particularly be engendering insanity in a group of "people" that regularly go around eviscerating people, ... After all, look at the war poetry of World War I, from Owen's Dulce et Decorum Est to Baldrick's lesser-known, Boom, Boom, Boom.

Indeed that was a great poem! that comes with a cunning plan... Thank for that quotation I feel really better now.partido_risa.gif

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To me, it doesn't seem any more implausible than their ribcage becoming a solid bone vault, or the ability to stay awake for hundreds of days without threat of psychosis or tech-priests removing parts of their brains to provide more room for computers, no more, no less.  Spit acid, Marines.  It makes sense in their universe.  I accept this if I'm willing to accept the bolter.

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