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Kaihlik

Chartist Captains use Navigators?

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In almost every reference to them that I have seen it says that Chartist Captains dont make use of Navigators and instead make lots of short unguided jumps along known warp routes.

The Navis Primer on the other hand says that Chartist Captains do use Navigators and mentions that the idea of traveling through the warp unguided is considered suicide.

I'm willing to concede that some Chartists would use navigators but it seems to contradict previous background about them to imply they all or mostly do and that it is impossible for them not to. I always thought that Free Traders were basically Chartist captains that didn't have set routes to take and tended to use navigators.

I'm just trying to work out what the case actually is since this seems to have muddied the waters quite a bit in my eyes. Maybe someone who understands this a bit better can explain it to me.

Kaihlik

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Where exactly does it state that Chartist Captains make no use of Navigators? After all, the Merchant Guilds have a lot of political power, their craft forming 90% of the Imperium's starships, and their Speaker even being one of the High Lords of Terra, so I don't see why they wouldn't have the support of the Navis Nobilite. However, there are Chartist Captains that maybe just don't need a Navigator, if their trade is exclusively intra-system or in between systems no farther away than 5 light years apart, but performing a longer trip by making several short jumps is both dangerous and horribly impractical.

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I'm leaving for work soon but when I have more time I'll try and find some more references although there aren't many out there but page 254 of Dark Heresy says they lack Astropaths and Navigators. I have always seen it as an issue of numbers, that the Navis Nobilite just didn't have enough functioning Navigators to serve all the needs of the Imperium hence the use of unguided jumps to serve the routine day to day fair that is simply traveling along a preplanned route.

Kaihlik

EDIT: There is also mention of Calculated vs Piloted jump on page 311 of Rogue Trader and the idea of Calculated jumps seems to have been thrown out of the Navis Primer.

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I interpreted it this way Kaihlik.

Chartist Captains that follow known safe warp routes in "safe" areas of space (like the Calaxis Sector) use none to very very little navigators.  Free Captains, on the other hand, might be using Navigators from Rogue Houses, Impoverished Houses, or just plain mad/cursed/insanely violent Navigators from normal Houses to conduct short jumps until they reach a "safe" known warp route, and then they follow it until their destination or until they have to deviate and use the Navigator again. 

Mind you, since this is RT we are talking about, the area they mostly refer to in the book is the Koronus Expanse.  And no where in the Expanse is a safe known warp route, so pretty much everyone has to have a Navigator, or something/someone equivalent to one, if traveling long distances.  This is not to say that Free Captains traveling from one known adjacent star system to another known star system need them, IMO, but to travel away from those two locations for longer voyages they do need a Navigator or something equivalent.  I also utilize weak/inexperience Navigators piggy backing/following stronger/experience Navigators if multiple ships/fleets are used.  Like merchant fleets, raiding parties, etc.  Once again though, this is just my interpretation of it.

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@Nameless2all - Yeah that's how I previously would have interpreted it as well until this sentence on page 35 of The Navis Primer.

"Navigators are the Imperiums only means of traversing this horrifying realm, and to enter the warp without one not to court damnation, it is to guarantee it."

Which is where my confusion has come in. I do plan on just ignoring that line and the implications it has but I was wondering if there was a reasonable explanation for it. In the rules if you were to try it you have something like a 35% chance of being lost in the warp and horrible things happen to you.

Kaihlik

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is that sentance from a quote from a navigator? or actual material? My interpretation is any navigator would say they are the only way through the warp without damnation, for the sheer fact that that's their entire role in society. Hence why they spend so much time and resources to find and destroy any other form of travel without navigator help.

then again, if thats straight text and not from a navi scion, my point is invalid

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You can make short warp jumps relatively safely without a Navigator.  It's not as safe (essentially you point yourself in a direction, jump into the warp, and come out a while later) but that's not a serious issue when you're traveling what's known to be a safe and stable route.  It's also nowhere as fast.  For a Chartest Captain that doesn't leave the subsector that's not an issue, but for one who travels between several sectors that's another matter entirely.  Aliens who don't have access to the Webway are stuck traveling the Warp that way, although some psykers possess powers that can be helpful.

 

 

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@ Cornwallis - Its not a person saying it its in the main body of the text.

@ Cynical Cat - Yeah that's how I've always thought about it until page 35 of the Navis Primer which pretty much rules it out. The reason it stood out to me was actually because in my Dark Heresy game that is how I portray warp travel in general within the sector, in that you find a chartist captain going the way you want to go and he takes you there via a bunch of small jumps. In Rogue Trader I totally get that this is not really an issue since you don't have the option of Calculated jumps in the first place in the Expanse.

Normally I would just assume that they didn't bother to mention it but they seem to have gone out of their way to make it seem impossible.

Kaihlik

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The Klenova Class M Warp Engine out right states it is made for those who follow well established routes and those who travel without a navigator. It is a standard drive in every way, except the nav interface is not built into it.I will be ignoring that issue if that is what the new book means as I like the idea that not all ships have a navigator. Even if 40k you would need hundreds of thousands per secotre just to keep cargo moving.

 

To me you do not need a nav, in places where routes are well known and well charted.

 

 

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Hunterindarkness said:

To me you do not need a nav, in places where routes are well known and well charted.

Consider too that the only way that a route can become well known and well charted is through the efforts of Navigators. I'm sure they sell the plotted warp route at high costs (up front buy-in and more than likely a percentage of whatever is carried on the vessels) to whoever regulates the Chartist Captains and only allow a certain number of vessels to operate in such a manner per route. Bootleg copies of the warp route are going to be highly illegal.

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No that is the only safe way to plot them. That being said, once charts are made you do not need them, in fact you most likely could not make and train enough Navs to keep the routes you do have, much less send them to make new ones. They are in high demand, you can't simply be placing even one much less backups on every ship. And with a well known route, why would you?

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Kaihlik said:

@ Cornwallis - Its not a person saying it its in the main body of the text.

@ Cynical Cat - Yeah that's how I've always thought about it until page 35 of the Navis Primer which pretty much rules it out. The reason it stood out to me was actually because in my Dark Heresy game that is how I portray warp travel in general within the sector, in that you find a chartist captain going the way you want to go and he takes you there via a bunch of small jumps. In Rogue Trader I totally get that this is not really an issue since you don't have the option of Calculated jumps in the first place in the Expanse.

Normally I would just assume that they didn't bother to mention it but they seem to have gone out of their way to make it seem impossible.

Kaihlik

 

I don't have the Navis Primer yet, but whatever it says that you don't need a Navigator has been the way it's been since the first edition of the game.  Humanity used the warp for millenia before they engineered Navigators.  Orks and Tau, for example, don't have them and use the warp.   You can find examples of warp travel without one in the novel Execution Hour and the section on Chartest Captains in Dark Heresy says that most of them don't employ Navigators.  

It could be out of context or it could be simply an error.  Rogue Trader, for example, uses numbers for ship mass that are well on the low side for such large vessels and acceleration numbers for starships that are lower (by at least one order of magnitude) than most of the depictions in novels and game book fluff.  If it's a mistake, then that's all it is.

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Cornwallis said:

is that sentance from a quote from a navigator? or actual material? My interpretation is any navigator would say they are the only way through the warp without damnation, for the sheer fact that that's their entire role in society. Hence why they spend so much time and resources to find and destroy any other form of travel without navigator help.

I would go with this. The fact is that for anything other than very short jumps in very stable routes which have been in operation for centuries the prospect of going without a Navigator should be terrifying to your avergae citizen. This is in part becasue of the nature of the Warp but also a result of a campaign of misinformation and imposed ignorance (which, basically, every aspect of the Imperium thrives on…) which is the base of the Navis power.

The Captain may decide he wants to risk those jumps, but consider the impact on the morale of the crew. Even if they survive a jump or two, they would likely panic. SOme might refuse to co-operate (imagine them barricading the warp engine rooms and refusing to complay with orders, etc.) This is, of course, unless there is no other option left (Navigator dead, say).

So, as others have suggested: if it's in-system shipping, or very close systems and stable routes, then no Navigator is 'necessary.' If there's even the slightest deviation from the norm or the paths are unastable, then a Navigator should be present. There's a reason the Navigator and Magisterial Houses are so stinking rich and powerful: they can pretty much name their price. And of course, this is where the Shrouded and Renegade Houses fit in: the black market of the Navigation world. I would imagine many of the more shady Chartist captains - who might not employ a Navigator full-time - would still 'know a guy' who can get them a 'Navigator for Hire' if they ever need to make an 'unscheduled delivery' or something.

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 I don't yet have the Navis Primer but If we examine the basic rulebook we could discern the following. A short jump plotted along a known rout would take a Navigator one day to complete. We may assume that a Successful Calculated jump is the equivalent of 2 degrees of failure meaning the journey takes 4x as long. This would allow for 1 warp encounter without the Navigators +20 for successfully assessing warp conditions. Needless to say; This is a fairly dangerous proposition!  Still… For many chartist Captains this is their only option!

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