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ByzantineFalcon

FNGM - Variety of Questions

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FNG + GM… well, it sounded funny in my head.  Anyway…

Hello all!  Long-time GM, new to Deathwatch (and 40k RPG in general), with about 4 games under my belt so far (the adventure in the core rulebook, as well as the Ghosts of Baraban mission from the GM screen), and while I am getting a handle on the rules, some are still a bit beyond me just yet.  Some are where the fluff (been playing 40k since 2004) and the rules are at odds, others where I am not quire sure what they were intending.  Still others are areas where I want to house-rule changes, but I am not sure what the long-term consequences are going to be.  Hopefully you all can help?

 

- The Flesh is Weak - This makes the character count as a machine.  Our Iron Hand Techmarine picked this one up right away (surprise!), and the errata covered the stacking with armor.  The way the rules read, he should not be affected by any sort of psychic or mind control effect, correct?  With the Baraban mission, I ruled that the Delirium Trellises still affected him (mostly because I was unclear on how The Flesh is Weak read, and he was into playing up the primarchs curse anyway).  Is this accurate?  How does this trait interact with fear, insanity points, etc? 

- Bionics - If I am understanding, bionics in a given area boost the toughness in that area, but if they suffer critical damage, it has a chance of damaging the bionics? 

- Righteous Fury - A friend who has been playing 40k RPG for a time suggested I modify RF from RAW in the core rules (before I noticed that the errata fixed it).  Now, I am not sure which way to go.  His suggestion was to use it like it is in Black Crusade.  If it applies, you just deal 1d5 critical damage on top of the existing damage.  Just looking for opinions on this.  One of the Battle Brothers got messed up pretty bad from what should of been a fairly simple encounter playing it this way, but I also want to avoid the Heavy Bolter of Doom effect. 

- Solo/Squad Mode - I see a ton of potential in the use of squad mode abilities, but some of the specialities have solo OR squad mode advantages (tactical marines, for example).  Needless to say, most of the players picked the solo mode abilities, because they were a bit more powerful and were more likely to be used.  I was thinking of giving them access to both, depending on what mode they are in.  This makes sense to me for Deathwatch.. they will act a certain way in solo mode, and then transition into a different way when in squad mode.  Too much? 

Also, on that same note, I had considered granting some sort of way for the team leader to give his chapter squad mode ability to the rest of the group with a command or fellowship test, then I read (in the forums here) that it had been covered already.  Plus, the Tactical Marine already gets that ability.  I just found it interesting that the Deathwatch gets its strength from diversity of chapters serving in it, but then the rules would seem to reward a squad all made up of individuals from the same chapter.  Any ideas on how I could work this to share the abilities, but with a test?  Or should it just be based on the leader? 

- Requisition - This is one area that seems to have a lot of potential for helping the party out, but is not used to its fullest.  My players seem more concerned with getting a gun for every situation they can imagine, end up only using their basic weapons, and the points go to waste.  This mission I gave them a fairly high requisition total, but limited it to 2/3 ammo and 1/3 weapon (or they can use either for equipment).  Trying to encourage them to trick out their issued gear to the most, and to bring specialty ammo for a variety of situations.. as well as a flamer "for close encounters".  Anyone else have this problem?  Then I have other players who cant find anything to spend their requisition on.  This amazed me, but I had little to offer in advice.  What are some "always useful" items for the group to have for burning leftover requisition?

 

I imagine I will think of some more and post as they come up, these were just the first batch to come to mind.  Thanks in advance if you can help out at all.

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Probably can't give you much of advice, since I am in the same situation as you are. But here are my thoughts:

- Rightous Fury according to the rule book is a killer (altough for the space marines). The errata is much better. One a "10" you can roll an additonal dice of damage and add it. That way you get a quit good damage total, but nothing neckbraking like 47 wound with one bullet.

- Fore the squad and solo mode ability I would stick with the rules. I like my players to have to make (hard) descisions. And on is if they are good in solo or in squad mode. Squad mode is quit powerfull, therefor the solo mode abilitys are a littel better.

- Requisition is although somethink I was wondering about. I simpls skipped the standard war gear. They have to buy every thing exept their armor with the requisition points. That way (depending on the class) the have to spend 10-30 requisiton for the equivalent of the standard gear. That forces the players to decisde what the really need (flamer or heavy bolter? not enough points for both).

If they are carring to much weapons I would ask how they carry them. They have 2 hands (most of them anyway) an no backpack. My assault marine is carring 2 Chainsword, his claymor and an astardes bolter. I am wondering where he is carring the bolter, and how he can ready it with a free action…

But I wouldn´t allow for more. Carrying equipment is not only abouth strength and weight.

However I think, that special ammuniton and weapon upgrades are a good place to spend "remaining" points. For example a bolter with fire selector, 2 magazines of special ammo, laser targeting, mealy weapon upgrade and smart lock is a good start.

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The Flesh is Weak: You made a ruling I would have. The Machine trait is intended to be used for full robots or servitors. I do not believe The Flesh is Weak replaces the character's brain, so he should still be affected by psychic powers. This is just one of those instances a GM needs to use the Common Sense rule.

Bionics: Suffer critical damage exactly as the specific body part affected. If a bionic arm takes critical damage that makes it useless until healed then it no longer functions (unusable and does not provide bionic benefit) until it is repaired (through a character with tech-use, you can't "heal" a machine).

Righteous Fury: Its up to you whether you want to bring in BC's RF rules, but if you do not then you need to be using the errata version. A second note, characters only generally benefit from Righteous Fury if they have fate points. Most of the enemies your Kill-Team faces will not be able to get Righteous Fury.

Squad/Solo: DW Kill-Teams have access to both solo and squad mode abilities they know all the time. Every character knows and can use both his chapter's specific Solo Mode abilities and all of the Codex Solo Mode abilities. Additionally, every character also knows all of his chapter's Squad Mode abilities and all of the Codex Squad Mode abilities although the Codex abilities are limited by the oath the kill-team takes before the mission. Solo Mode abilities may be used when a character is in Solo Mode, Squad Mode abilities may only be used when he is in Squad Mode.

Pt 2: The specific chapter abilities cannot be shared unless the character has one of the talents or abilities present in some of the add-on books, such as Brothers of the Blood. I would keep this limitation in place. It gives a benefit if multiple Kill-Team members are from the same chapter early on and can be overcome if needed later through character development.

Requisition: If you want your players to spend req on items other than just normal guns and weapons you really have to use encounters where such items could be of use. Such as a sheer cliff which would save hours of walking around if the Kill-Team brought climbing equipment. Also be sure to use all of the special rules and abilities the enemies can use such as cover, tactical advance, etc.. This makes the enemies harder to take out, and gives the players some good reasons to bring some specialist equipment (such as cover-ignoring ammo).

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Skyecaptain said:

- Rightous Fury according to the rule book is a killer (altough for the space marines). The errata is much better. One a "10" you can roll an additonal dice of damage and add it. That way you get a quit good damage total, but nothing neckbraking like 47 wound with one bullet.

- Fore the squad and solo mode ability I would stick with the rules. I like my players to have to make (hard) descisions. And on is if they are good in solo or in squad mode. Squad mode is quit powerfull, therefor the solo mode abilitys are a littel better.

- Requisition is although somethink I was wondering about. I simpls skipped the standard war gear. They have to buy every thing exept their armor with the requisition points. That way (depending on the class) the have to spend 10-30 requisiton for the equivalent of the standard gear. That forces the players to decisde what the really need (flamer or heavy bolter? not enough points for both).

If they are carring to much weapons I would ask how they carry them. They have 2 hands (most of them anyway) an no backpack. My assault marine is carring 2 Chainsword, his claymor and an astardes bolter. I am wondering where he is carring the bolter, and how he can ready it with a free action…

But I wouldn´t allow for more. Carrying equipment is not only abouth strength and weight.

However I think, that special ammuniton and weapon upgrades are a good place to spend "remaining" points. For example a bolter with fire selector, 2 magazines of special ammo, laser targeting, mealy weapon upgrade and smart lock is a good start.

Decided to run Righteous Fury like the Errata, and they were chewing up bad guys like no ones business.  Going to try it like that through one more game before I put it to the group if they want to roll with it like that, or like Black Crusade/Only War (with the crit wounds). 

We went with the rules for Solo/Squad.  It turned out to not be a huge thing anyway, at this point in the game. 

I ended up giving them way too much requisition, as usual, and am paying the price for it now.  Live and learn.  They already have the established wargear, but that is a consideration for future games.. figure out how much should be 'standard kit' (Grenades, pistol, knife, etc.. the 'specialty' gear should be requisitioned, but how do you handle force weapons?). 

Weapons will be addressed the next mission.  The funny thing about RPGs that they gloss over.  Everyone loves to have every possible weapon in a game, but if they had to clean the **** things like you actually would… I imagine they would be less inclined to bring all that stuff along. 

 

herichimo said:

The Flesh is Weak: You made a ruling I would have. The Machine trait is intended to be used for full robots or servitors. I do not believe The Flesh is Weak replaces the character's brain, so he should still be affected by psychic powers. This is just one of those instances a GM needs to use the Common Sense rule.

Bionics: Suffer critical damage exactly as the specific body part affected. If a bionic arm takes critical damage that makes it useless until healed then it no longer functions (unusable and does not provide bionic benefit) until it is repaired (through a character with tech-use, you can't "heal" a machine).

Righteous Fury: Its up to you whether you want to bring in BC's RF rules, but if you do not then you need to be using the errata version. A second note, characters only generally benefit from Righteous Fury if they have fate points. Most of the enemies your Kill-Team faces will not be able to get Righteous Fury.

Squad/Solo: DW Kill-Teams have access to both solo and squad mode abilities they know all the time. Every character knows and can use both his chapter's specific Solo Mode abilities and all of the Codex Solo Mode abilities. Additionally, every character also knows all of his chapter's Squad Mode abilities and all of the Codex Squad Mode abilities although the Codex abilities are limited by the oath the kill-team takes before the mission. Solo Mode abilities may be used when a character is in Solo Mode, Squad Mode abilities may only be used when he is in Squad Mode.

Pt 2: The specific chapter abilities cannot be shared unless the character has one of the talents or abilities present in some of the add-on books, such as Brothers of the Blood. I would keep this limitation in place. It gives a benefit if multiple Kill-Team members are from the same chapter early on and can be overcome if needed later through character development.

Requisition: If you want your players to spend req on items other than just normal guns and weapons you really have to use encounters where such items could be of use. Such as a sheer cliff which would save hours of walking around if the Kill-Team brought climbing equipment. Also be sure to use all of the special rules and abilities the enemies can use such as cover, tactical advance, etc.. This makes the enemies harder to take out, and gives the players some good reasons to bring some specialist equipment (such as cover-ignoring ammo).

The Techmarine rules in general are somewhat confusing.  What exactly he has, how it works, etc.  Like, the current issue.. Breaching Auger/Bulkhead Shears.  He wants to bring one.  Well, no servo harness, so thats a no-go.  So he decided to bring a set of shears instead of his servo arm.  Sound reasoning, but likely?  I went with it… but those kinds of things are giving me fits. 

Can you reference where it mentions fate points being required for righteous fury?  I went looking the other day and must of missed it.  So far, that has yet to really come into play, my damage rolls are horrid. 

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