Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
TK Ghost

Tyranid Bioships

23 posts in this topic

I would like to have a Rogue Trader who is a hero, even if not for the most moral of reasons. Perhaps he enjoys the thrill of living dangerously, or the fame and fortune that comes from his "heroic" deeds. Either way, whether a true hero or a self-promoting egotistical moron, this Rogue Trader is planning a daring rescue.

 

There is a person, or persons, of importance on a planet currently under attack by Tyranids. Bioships are preventing transports from leaving and, without aid from an Imperial Navy who are busy with "more important engagements", they're as doomed as the world around them. To top it off, the transports are filled to bursting with the "ordinary" citizens of the planet. "Rebels" have taken the planetary nobility hostage in their own palace to allow friends and family to escape certain doom.

 

So the Rogue Trader arrives to blast an opening through the Hive Ships so that the Transports can make an attempt at escape. But his main goal is the rescue of the nobility who, with their wealth and influence, can richly reward him. Rumour has it the governor's daughter is quite the catch too.

 

 

Now you know the WHY it is time to find out HOW. I've looked through the house rules but saw nothing about Tyranids. I'm wondering if anyone has any ideas about representing the Bioships in games of Rogue Trader.

 

Or if someone has already house ruled Tyranids please provide a link.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A long time ago someone came up with rules for Tyranids, I think before most of their stats were published in Deathwatch. It's quite a thorough resource.

 

I made a link to it here:http://tinyurl.com/RTTyranidConversion

 

That's great! Thank you.

 

It seems to cover the Bioships well, including some fleet rules and instinctive behavior.

 

I've got some reading to do.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hm. One of the RT publications has rules for Void Kraken. Their stats are that of voidships, rather than creatures, and it has some pretty interesting tricks.

 

Now, what publication was that in...?

 

Or...if you or someone you know has a copy of No_1's 'Unearthed Apocrypha: The Great Devourer', there is a wealth of Tyranid bio-ship information contained within. If not, my sympathies. I have a hard copy, but am leery to post the info for fear of IP infringement.

 

EDIT: Ninja'd by Erathia  :ph34r:  

Edited by Brother Orpheo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hm. One of the RT publications has rules for Void Kraken. Their stats are that of voidships, rather than creatures, and it has some pretty interesting tricks.

 

Now, what publication was that in...?

 

Or...if you or someone you know has a copy of No_1's 'Unearthed Apocrypha: The Great Devourer', there is a wealth of Tyranid bio-ship information contained within. If not, my sympathies. I have a hard copy, but am leery to post the info for fear of IP infringement.

 

EDIT: Ninja'd by Erathia  :ph34r:  

 

I did consider picking up Koronus Bestiary for the Kraken rules. But I read somewhere that it was a powerful beast, whereas I'd like to have a swarm of creatures who are deadlier in numbers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Hm. One of the RT publications has rules for Void Kraken. Their stats are that of voidships, rather than creatures, and it has some pretty interesting tricks.

 

Now, what publication was that in...?

 

Or...if you or someone you know has a copy of No_1's 'Unearthed Apocrypha: The Great Devourer', there is a wealth of Tyranid bio-ship information contained within. If not, my sympathies. I have a hard copy, but am leery to post the info for fear of IP infringement.

 

EDIT: Ninja'd by Erathia  :ph34r:  

 

I did consider picking up Koronus Bestiary for the Kraken rules. But I read somewhere that it was a powerful beast, whereas I'd like to have a swarm of creatures who are deadlier in numbers.

 

 

You should pick up Koronus Bestiary for a lot of reasons. The miscellaneous monster sections have some excellent written backstory that can form adventure seeds for a lot of the planets in the Expanse, and the named race selection has a wide array of enemies to customize those enemies for your players. It's probably the book I would recommend after the three core books.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It really depends what kind of bishops you want to model. A lot of them work simply by re-skinning imperial ship stats: bishops have equivalents to macro cannons, lances, void shields, attack craft, etc. 

 

As for where it might be, I'd put it as an adventure in the Jericho Reach. Plenty of RTs have signed up to help the Achilus Crusade for fun and profit. Putting tyranids in the Koronus Expanse leads to a lot of changes to that setting that you may not be prepared to make.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It really depends what kind of bishops you want to model. A lot of them work simply by re-skinning imperial ship stats: bishops have equivalents to macro cannons, lances, void shields, attack craft, etc. 

 

As for where it might be, I'd put it as an adventure in the Jericho Reach. Plenty of RTs have signed up to help the Achilus Crusade for fun and profit. Putting tyranids in the Koronus Expanse leads to a lot of changes to that setting that you may not be prepared to make.

 

Since I am intending creating my own Hive Fleet, I might well come up with some Bioship designs. I've seen a couple of miniatures that I could use and I want to size them up next to the models I'm going to use for the RT and his modest little fleet. One thing I do know is that the Tyranids will be armed with Feeder Tendrils, Crushing Claws or Bio-Plasma as I them to be deadly up close. Like I've said before, I want there to be a swarm of Tyranids but only a few ships to battle them.

 

I'm working on my own background in my own little corner of the Imperium so the "where" isn't too much of an issue.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd agree with the Void Kraken, as I've had that plan, too. Pimped up, it could be very badass for the opposition of a group. Maybe a bit bigger, or more than one, give it some ship-class venom cannons (or whatever Tyranid vessels in BFG attacked with), maybe take out the crushing bit, and have it grapple to initiate boarding actions (what comes over is your call, but Gaunts, Stealers, or even Fexes are all possible, and terrifying), and if you have DW Mark of the Xenos, give it Shadow in the Warp. This would jam Astropaths, Navigators, and warp-jump escapes. For "bigger" ones, like the battleship-sized things, either scale it up, or be vague; it's a huge Nid, filled with Nids.

TK Ghost likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd agree with the Void Kraken, as I've had that plan, too. Pimped up, it could be very badass for the opposition of a group. Maybe a bit bigger, or more than one, give it some ship-class venom cannons (or whatever Tyranid vessels in BFG attacked with), maybe take out the crushing bit, and have it grapple to initiate boarding actions (what comes over is your call, but Gaunts, Stealers, or even Fexes are all possible, and terrifying), and if you have DW Mark of the Xenos, give it Shadow in the Warp. This would jam Astropaths, Navigators, and warp-jump escapes. For "bigger" ones, like the battleship-sized things, either scale it up, or be vague; it's a huge Nid, filled with Nids.

 

Feeder Tendrils are what I intend arming them with. They're not for crushing, that's what crushing claws are for, but being able to grapple is a great idea. My Tyranids (the tabletop variety) are going to be Tyranid Warrior sized and bigger with the exception of Genestealers (my favourite) and Tervigon spawned Gaunts. Though I could be really nasty, I think any gaming of boarding actions will be Gaunts, Stealers and the occasional Lictor. Don't want to make it too difficult.

 

Shadow in the Warp?

 

Most of the creatures will be destroyer/frigate sized with only a single cruiser sized ship. From my BFG days I know only the Hive Ships have the Synapse, and therefore they will grant Shadow of the Warp. However, since this is a full scale invasion, I had thought of doing a "blanket Shadow of the Warp" which covers the entire board.

 

In other words: the Rogue Trader and his small group of ships are on their own.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can also see it's "nova cannon" analogue being a spore cannon; that is, the thing that launches a prefab down to a planet, which will let loose the infestation on some poor, helpless souls.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mycetic spores are the parallel to drop pods, not to nova cannon shells. Frankly the nids don't need a Nova Cannon equivalent. They have numbers and close-in superiority, and replace ships in a matter of weeks as opposed to decades.

TK Ghost, Tenebrae and Erathia like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mycetic spores are the parallel to drop pods, not to nova cannon shells. Frankly the nids don't need a Nova Cannon equivalent. They have numbers and close-in superiority, and replace ships in a matter of weeks as opposed to decades.

I meant more based on size of the object they might drop, and its location on the bio-ship, rather than an earth-shattering superweapon; Nids sort of ARE an earth-shattering superweapon. I know that the Tyranid swarms can grow from spores on the planet, like Orks can, and they probably develop much faster than the Greenskins do, but I still imagine the hive ships jettisoning massive structures down (like a "drop pod" for a Titan), filled with Tyranids, to serve as vanguard forces, seeding the area as they go. Certainly, Lictors and Genestealers could suffice, but sometimes, I suspect a full on assault would, too, and waiting for organisms to grow, or Genestealers to Cult-conquer the planet could just take to long.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Personally, I'd pictured the big hive ships taking decades or centuries to grow to full size, and that its entirely possible that some of the smaller tyranid ships are the larval forms of bigger ships. The ones that survived would just keep getting bigger.

Also, I really like the idea of a hive fleet taking a few of its frigate sized vessels and re-growing their innards to be pure assault carriers. After the hive ships drop spores to the surface as a vanguard, the big assault boats would drop in and land entire armies of organisms at once.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So, would bioships have void shields? I never played BFG, but would think they should. They might not have void shield TECH, but if a Zoanthrope can raise a mighty shield of psychic energy around it, one would think that a whole ship of organisms, alive with the Hive Mind, could do so on a massive scale. Do they?

 

Also, might they regenerate? Would it be slow, "natural" healing, or ratable in combat fast healing? Really wish sometimes the "related" series would cover more of each other's stuff, rather than just copy/paste rules; then we'd have Nid and Tau ships for DW, built like in RT, while RT might then get to use sparing Nids and Tau.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes. Deathwatch basically has them deploy "spore screens" through giant lung-like structures. The spore field does things like refract energy weapons and explode ordinance that comes into contact with it.

 

RT doesn't have nids and Tau because nids and Tau don't exist in Koronus, and FFG doesn't seem to be interested in putting out RT books with the assumption that they will be run in other places. On the flip side, DW doesn't presume you will ever command a ship in combat and so focuses on things like atmospheric gunships and tanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know, but it just makes me a bit sad, is all, especially when THEY claim, and most disagree, that the lines intermingle well. I still have a bit of a plan to someday get a group together, see that they have a decently military-themed vessel, and have them RT it up in the Reach, just because the competition is thinner, if nothing else. There are several races in RT space that I'm not as familiar with, Orks never impressed me, especially pirate Orks, though they are effective, and while I love the Eldar, they could easily be there, too. Tau and, god I hate it, Necrons might be some interesting interaction options for a Rogue Trader, and Nids, Orks, Chaos make great foes, if necessary.

 

I wouldn't mind a book that, while having other stuff, might include some other group's ships, like SM strike cruisers, Nid bio-ships, and especially Tau space vessels. Maybe not quite "unified project" level, but some useful information, nonetheless.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've got an alternate set of rules for Tyranid Bioships. Anyone mind if I post them up?

Be my guest.  I love seeing fan made material.  It's inspirational.  :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

k. Fair warning, they're a little nonstandard.

 

 

Tyranid Special Rules

 

Hive Mind: Hive Ships provide synaptic control to any Tyranid vessel in their fleet within 10 VU

    Tyranid Vessels other than the Hive Ship revert to the Instinctive Behavior action list whenever outside the Hive Ship's area

        Instinctive Behavior Action List (in descending order of priority)

        1. If normal move would cause ship to hit Celestial Phenomena, turn to avoid colliding with Celestial Phenomena

        2. Frigates: If an enemy ship can be reached with one maneuver, maneuver to it and attempt a boarding action

        3. If ship's current hull points = 25 or less, attempt to flee battlefield

        4. Frigates: If an enemy ship is within 20 VU, move towards enemy ship and attempt to put enemy in forward firing arc

        5. Cruisers and Larger: If an enemy ship is within 20 VU, put enemy in forward firing arc and launch ordnance where available

        6. If an enemy ship is within forward firing arc and range, fire at enemy ship

        7. If none of the above apply, attempt to return to the Synaptic Control area of fleet's nearest Hive Ship

        8. If none of the above apply, fly towards nearest detectable planet containing life

    All Tyranid vessels count as Morale 100 at all times   

 

Assuming Direct Control: Tyranids get +30 to command on all Boarding actions and Hit&Run command checks

 

Horrible Things that Eat You: Tyranids do not make Morale checks after failed Boarding Action rolls

    Opposing non-Tyranid vessels count their morale as 10 higher in Boarding Actions, and lose 2d10 population on a failed Morale roll

 

Evolution: If a tyranid fleet survives at least one encounter with an enemy, it may adopt one of the following upgrades on one or more ships

    Solar Vanes: +2 Speed, -5 maneuverability

    Psychic Scream: Enemy ships within 6 VU of this vessel take -10 to command checks and 2 morale damage every turn; not intended for escorts

    More Discharge Vanes: +10 maneuverability

    Extra Spore Cysts: +1 Spore Cloud

    Reinforced Carapace: +10 Hull points; a cruiser that gains enough Hull Points can become a Hive Ship

    Mucous Membrane: Bombers and Torpedos receive -10 to their Craft and Torpedo rating tests when targetting this vessel

    Accelerated Healing: roll 2 dice when attempting to repair critical damage

    Drone Link: All ships within 6 VU of a Vanguard Drone Ship with this gain +10BS; all attack craft in 6VU gain +5 craft rating

    Bloated: All attack craft bays on this ship gain +1 strength, but ship reduces its armor by 3

    These upgrades are listed entirely so that the GM may adapt Tyranid vessels to PC tactics or to what NPCs they've been eating

 

Bio-Plasma: short-ranged plasma fire produced from exterior glands; act as Lance shots, but ignore shields

 

Pyro-Acid Batteries: pustule arrays that launch large spores filled with unstable chemical cocktails; all critical hits are Fire criticals

 

Spores: tyranid shield and turret equivalent--each level of spore cysts counts as 1 shield and 1 turret

    Tyranid Vessels in base contact with another ship count their shields as 1 lower, but gain +1 turret vs Ordnance Only

    Unshielded vessels in base contact with a Tyranid vessel with spores take 1 damage per turn from sheer spore pollution

 

Feeder Tentacles: hit&run upgrade, requiring the tyranid ship to enter within 1 VU of the target, but does not require ramming/boarding action

    Ship makes a BS check; on a success, make 1 Hit&Run attempt on the target + 1 Hit&Run per degree of success (max 3 total Hit&Runs)

 

Massive Claws: when in 1 VU, make a Pilot+Maneuver check; on a success, inflict 1d10+3 damage, ignoring shields, +1d10 per 2 DoS (max 3d10+3)

    On a successful hit with 2+ DoS, the ship has latched onto the target, and may begin an immediate Boarding Action against the target

    Target ship suffers -10 on its attempt to break free, and a successful attempt deals 1d10 damage to the ship, ignoring armor/shields

    Targetted ships the same size as the tyranid vessel or smaller may not move; larger vessels may move at half speed and -15 maneuver

 

Swarm Ports: as launch bays of equal strength, and functions as Drop Pods for ground invasion; tyranid vessels digest any assault craft that return to them

    Instead of rebuilding existing craft, each vessel produces a new wave of craft equal to its Swarm Port's strength every 2 turns

 

Boreworm launcher: as torpedo tubes of equal strength; can produce a new wave of Boreworms equal to Launcher's strength every 2 turns

 

 

 

Tyranid Attack Craft and Torpedoes

    Gargoyle Swarm Spores (Fighter)        Rating -2, Speed 8, Squad Size 100

    Mycetic Spores (Assault/Bomber)        Rating +4/+0, Speed 8, Squad Size 100    Multi-purpose: Primarily Assault, secondary Bomber

    Boreworms (torpedo)                                                 Speed 8        Damage 2d10+1    Terminal Pen 3        Range 60    Rating: +20    Automatic Hit&Run Attack

 

 

TYRANID VANGUARD DRONE

    Speed: 8            Maneuverability: +25        Detection: +20

    Spore Cysts: 1        Armour: 17            Hull Points: 33

    Weapons/Slots: Prow Pyro-Acid Battery (strength 3, damage 1d10+2, crit 3, range 4, all crits are Fire crits) OR Feeder Tentacles

    Other Components:

Brain (as bridge), Gravitic Drive Gland, Warp Transition Spines, Spore Cyst, Millions of Eyes (sensors), Proboscis, Vanguard Spore Bay

Special Components:


    Brain (treat as bridge, with the addition that if this is damaged, the ship will stay on Instinctive Behavior until it is repaired)

    Millions of Eyes (sensors)

When this is operational, ships in this fleet can target any enemy ship within 10 VU of this ship regardless of Instinctive Behavior)

Proboscis (this tube allows the ship to take food from surface structures and other Tyranid vessels)

                    Vanguard Spore Bay (as drop-pods; launch vanguard creatures, such as genestealers and lictors)

 

 

TYRANID ESCORT DRONE

    Speed: 4            Maneuverability: +10        Detection: +8

    Spore Cysts: 1        Armour: 18            Hull Points: 40

    Weapons/Slots choices:

Prow Pyro-Acid Battery (strength 4, damage 1d10+2, crit 3, range 5, all crits are Fire crits)     OR

Feeder Tentacles                                    OR

Prow Bioplasma Cyst (strength 2, damage 1d10+2, crit 3, range 3, lance, ignores shields and armor)

    Other Components:

Brain (as bridge), Gravitic Drive Gland, Warp Transition Spines, Spore Cyst, Void Eyes (sensors), Proboscis, Immature Spore Bay

Special Components:

    Brain (treat as bridge, with the addition that if this is damaged, the ship will stay on Instinctive Behavior until it is repaired)

    Proboscis (this tube allows the ship to take food from surface structures and other Tyranid vessels)

                    Immature Spore Bay (as drop-pods; launches infantry spores in comparatively small amounts, and nothing else)

 

 

TYRANID KRAKEN

    Speed: 8            Maneuverability: +25        Detection: +10

    Spore Cysts: 0*        Armour: 20            Hull Points: 30

    Weapons/Slots:

        Feeder Tentacles                                OR

        Massive Claws                                OR

        Boreworm Launcher (Strength 3)

    Other Components:

Brain (as bridge), Gravitic Drive Gland, Warp Transition Spines, Void Eyes (sensors), Proboscis, Lymph Matrix

Special Components:

    Brain (treat as bridge, with the addition that if this is damaged, the ship will stay on Instinctive Behavior until it is repaired)

Proboscis (this tube allows the ship to take food from surface structures and other Tyranid vessels)

                             Lymph Matrix (replaces Spore Cysts; repairs 4 hull points per round)

 

 

TYRANID CRUISER

    Speed: 5            Maneuverability: +10        Detection: +10

    Spore Cysts: 2        Armour: 18            Hull Points: 70

    Weapons/Slots:

        Prow: Boreworm Launcher (Strength 5)

        Thorax: Swarm Ports (Strength 3)

        Port/Starboard (one on each side):

            Pyro-Acid Battery (strength 4, damage 1d10+2, crit 3, range 5, all crits are Fire crits)         OR

            Bioplasma Cyst (strength 2, damage 1d10+2, crit 3, range 3, ignores shields and armor)

    Other Components:

Immature Hive Brain (as bridge), Gravitic Drive Gland, Warp Transition Spines, Void Eyes (sensors), Proboscis, Spore Cysts

Special Components:

    Brain (treat as bridge, with the addition that if this is damaged, the ship will stay on Instinctive Behavior until it is repaired; ship can grow to be a Hive Ship)

                Proboscis (this tube allows the ship to take food from surface structures and other Tyranid vessels)

 

 

TYRANID HIVE SHIP

    Speed: 3            Maneuverability: +6            Detection: +15

    Spore Cysts: 4        Armour: 18            Hull Points: 100

    Weapons/Slots:

        Prow: Bioplasma Spine Array (strength 2, damage 1d10+5, crit 3, range 3, lance, ignores shields and armor)

        Thorax/Port/Starboard: Swarm Ports (Strength 6)   

    Other Components:

Hive Brain (as bridge), Gravitic Drive Gland, Warp Transition Spines, Void Eyes (sensors), Proboscis, Spore Cysts

Special Components:

    Hive Brain (treat as bridge; if this component is damaged, whole fleet is on Instinctive Behavior until it is repaired)

                    Proboscis (this tube allows the ship to take food from surface structures and other Tyranid vessels)

 

 

TYRANID NARVHAL

    Speed: 10        Maneuverability: +20        Detection: +20

    Spore Cysts: 3        Armour: 15            Hull Points: 30

    Other Components:

Brain (as bridge), Gravitic Drive Gland, Interstellar Antennae, Warp Transition Spines, Void Eyes (sensors), Proboscis, Spore Cysts

Special Components:

    Brain (treat as bridge)

    Interstellar Antennae (long, thin organs covering the front, that help the Narvhal detect planetary systems from lightyears away)

                    Proboscis (this tube allows the ship to take food from surface structures and other Tyranid vessels)
Nameless2all likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like it.  It has diversity, along with evolving units, and you even have "fighter craft."  Gona have to steal that idea.  :D

Couple questions though: why did you not utilize the Void Kraken statistics on pg 37, KB, for your Tyranid Kraken (if you don't own the book, that answers the question); and two, did you go by BFG stats for these?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I actually don't own the book--its something I plan on rectifying shortly.

 

I did originally base these off of the BFG stats--that's where the spore cloud shields and special rules come from. I diverged rather rapidly when it came to the Tyranid cruiser and hive ship. The DM who requested these originally wanted to experiment more with fighter craft than with pre-existing weaponry... and to be honest, I always thought fighter craft fit Tyranid spaceships more. Tyranids are a hive species; they specialize in mass assault. Admittedly, imagining a swarm of Tyranids swarming through space is a bit weird, but Tyranid ships have always been a little weird in that regard.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0