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ZaelStarlocke

Character roleplay, capabilities, etc.

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Unfortunately, I seem to be struggling to find a place in my Rogue Trader group and as the RT, I can't seem to find a place i the party. Yeah, i know, I own the ship and can command people but I can't seem to understand my role in order tocontribute, rather than just be like a glorified landlord. Everyone else seems to be better than pretty much everything statwise, so it always forces me to sit back and just give orders (not that that's not good but eh). Even my Fellowship is challenged by one of the other players for frick sake, though  I have the best weapon skill but that only comes usefull in combat thus far (obviously). So maybe i'm not fully grasping my role here becaus i'm pretty frustrated that i'm just sitting there not contributing very much. Can anyone help me to understand or send me a link to an artivle that can help me understand my capabilities and thus allow me to contribute more often than the occasional buying session when we get done with missions? Also, maybe others who need help with understanding their roles can be helped as well here, so other people, feel free to ask. (yes I'm still very new to all of this)

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If you want to contribute something to the group, every Rogue Trader has this ability: "Exceptional Leader: As a free action once per round, the Rogue Trader may grant an ally that he can see and who can hear him +10% to any one test." (Core Rulebook, pg. 72)

 

That's an extra degree of success to any test.  You yourself cannot benefit from it, but simply by shouting at your underlings, they become better at their job.

 

Other than that, a Rogue Trader is a jack-of-all-trades and a master of none.  You are going to be outclassed in abilities by the other classes, because the other classes specialize.  But being the Rogue Trader isn't about being a practical character.  It's not about doing 3d10+12 damage to a mutant hell-beast.  It's about doing 1d10+6 damage, and you're dual-wielding flaming power swords while wearing advanced-material full plate armor, shined like a glittering diamond.

 

Like Julio Scoundrel from the Order of the Stick says: "It doesn't matter if you win or lose, as long as you look cool doing it.'

Edited by jabberwoky
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If your ship has launch bays and a  pilot ready room, your optimum job is commanding fighter/bomber attacks during ship combat. RTs can pump Command and Fellowship bonuses like no other.

 

In the personal scale, you should be doing all kinds of social stuff and aren't a slouch with a power sword, either.

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The most important question is what sort of character do you want to play? There are some Rogue Trader to Only War conversions lying around that open up character building a little more, but at the cost of not defining a role as firmly. 

 

Jabberwocky addresses the most important power of a Rogue Trader, but misses the point that the Rogue Trader is the leader. He is the person who others are going to turn to in social situations, and the person who ultimately issues the orders that people are meant to follow. They get talents that work well with other people, because they're not meant to be able to do things on their own, but when paired up with literally anyone else, they should be able to do something in concert with them.

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Jabberwocky addresses the most important power of a Rogue Trader, but misses the point that the Rogue Trader is the leader. He is the person who others are going to turn to in social situations, and the person who ultimately issues the orders that people are meant to follow. They get talents that work well with other people, because they're not meant to be able to do things on their own, but when paired up with literally anyone else, they should be able to do something in concert with them.

What Erathia said.  Also, using Exotic Weapon Proficiencies and Dual-Weapon Wielding talents early on may also help.  Nothing says "I'm coming to get you Eldar scum" like a human with a nice hat wielding a Shuriken pistol and an Eldar power sword at the same time.

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Jabberwocky addresses the most important power of a Rogue Trader, but misses the point that the Rogue Trader is the leader. He is the person who others are going to turn to in social situations, and the person who ultimately issues the orders that people are meant to follow. They get talents that work well with other people, because they're not meant to be able to do things on their own, but when paired up with literally anyone else, they should be able to do something in concert with them.

What Erathia said.  Also, using Exotic Weapon Proficiencies and Dual-Weapon Wielding talents early on may also help.  Nothing says "I'm coming to get you Eldar scum" like a human with a nice hat wielding a Shuriken pistol and an Eldar power sword at the same time.

 

 

My Rogue Trader frequently finds bold new ways to declare war on alien species because he feels his accessories are going out of date.

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Hmm...well, My character development is coming off, at least to me, like a mix between Handsome Jack from BL2, and The Warden from SuperJail... And i'm not talking combat, THAT i'm ok with though I still am not sure what else my status as a rogue trader can do. I know that i'm able to trade with xenos on occasion ans such so long as it helps the Imperium in some way. At the moment, my thoughts go to the current situation in my game where we got off a planet and now have what is called a Golden Man. Very polite but still Artificial intelligence and while we have a sanctioned Orc Weirdboy (PC [character is treated like crap obviously XD]) and for the next session, i'm thinking of extracting information from it, then destroying it due to it's heretical standing of simply being an AI. Then again, like the weirdboy, perhaps i could get it sanctioned, though i'm pretty sure there's no way in hell and my character WOULD know this, though I'm not sure. SO, being able to to certain things such as this would most certainly help me out, but again, some of the details of this universe are still strange or unknown to me. also captainstabby, i think i need to add a bit of jack sparrow crazy into it at this point but maybe not..we'll see where it goes.

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A.I. is an interesting point in the 40K Universe. Xenos come in such wide varieties and forms that there's no reason to suspect that an A.I. isn't just some weird metallic Xenos, or a highly evolved servitor. You are raised believing that every machine has a tiny spirit inside it that you have to appease to make it work, so this could just be a more highly programmed servitor. Only your Explorator might be on guard for this, and they should be freaking out either about heresy or the potential for research here.

 

I would recommend looking at the Calixian Privateer or the Xenographer Alternate Ranks from Into The Storm, as they both seem like they might offer a bit of flavour to your Rogue Trader.

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Uhh, don't bring that Golden Boy around any Tech-Priests. They'll go nuclear (perhaps literally) on you.

 

My experience, so far, has been similar to your experience. My character's pretty good with stabbing things with his power sword, and not too shabby with the shouting for various command tests for the attack craft.

 

If you've played Shadowrun, you're the Face of the group and occasional gunslinger. 

 

I do wish there were some other command elements in there, like orders from Only War. My group is experimenting with the idea of grabbing armsmen as 'comrades' in OW's system, or some generic redshirts to make us look even better.

 

Honestly, I don't feel like a good Rogue Trader if I'm not bossing people around. In the last parts of our Damaris shenanigans, I was fighting with my own 3-man retinue, and everyone else had at least one other servant/bullet-sponge to order. It slowed the game down some, but overall it kept us from asking "If my character's so damned important, why am I doing this alone while literally a hundred thousand people are in orbit right now?"

 

I don't know if implementing some OW house rules would work for your particular group or dilemma, I think I'm the same way. I was even considering taking one of the other professions and then just calling myself a Rogue Trader, since it seems more of a rank than an actual class. But we have to embrace the RT's strengths.

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Well, the player in my party who is a tech priest is going ballistic in orgamic excitement sort of way, which means he's a bit heretekal. Other Adeptus mechanicus personel, yeah i'll probably see if i can keep it secret but i feel that i may have to destroy it. Then again, I don't know how far my authority with the warrant of trade extends to, so i'm only ever so slightly getting more and more knowledgeable of what I can do because of it, and maybe i could have certain things sanctioned due to them being helpful means to my ends (such as an orc I currently keep as a slave that is sanctioned) etc.

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Well, the player in my party who is a tech priest is going ballistic in orgamic excitement sort of way, which means he's a bit heretekal. 

 

They all are. PC tech priests in Rogue Trader that is. 

 

 Other Adeptus mechanicus personel, yeah i'll probably see if i can keep it secret but i feel that i may have to destroy it. 

 

Kinda curious how you acquired it. Was it damaged and the tech priest fixed it?

 

 Then again, I don't know how far my authority with the warrant of trade extends to.

 

 

Not this far, and I quote

 

11. A soul can be bestowed only by the Omnissiah.

12. The Soulless sentience is the enemy of all.

The commandments of the Mechanicus are vague but they're clear on this.
 
The Empire is allied with the Adeptus Mechanicus(Empire of Mars, it's own empire technically) for 10k yearsish now so you wouldn't have a leg to stand on, you'd lose your warrant for sure if found guilty.
 
Your warrant lets you found colonies(and profit from them after taxes)
 
Go wherever you want with a ship.(Normally it's illegal for individuals to own ships that can travel between systems. The merchant fleet(which comprises 90% of the imperial fleet) owns them all, the government has a near monopoly on shipping)  --actually often your bound to a specific place by terms of your warrant--
 
Deal with Zeno as you stated.
 
Act as a peer of the Imperium when outside the Empire.
--You can kill another Rogue Trader and say he was a heretic, investigation might be done but if the results are inconclusive your likely to get away with it.
--You can blow up a planet and all it's native inhabitants because the inhabitants made fun of your hat, assuming the planet wasn't paying taxes.
--You can keep the pirate ships you capture (In Imperial Space you might get screwed by the Imperial Navy and salvage rights, although if you were commissioned to take out the pirates you might have documents that let you keep the ship if that was part of the deal.)
 
Back to golden guy.
 
If you insist on going through this make him the Cogitator core of your ship with instructions not to talk to anyone but authorized personnel.  It's always fun to turn your ship into V'ger. Although sometimes V'ger blows up pirate ships you don't want blown up, resulting in less loot.(Speaking from personal experience)
 
Or you might do a mission for him in trade for information. He's old enough he might have some STC Designs laying around, or an old warp route, or the location of treasure, or the location of some archeotech.  (I guess interrogation could work for this as well.)
 
Or you(Your tech priest) could camouflage him as a battle servitor.
 
All this assumes he's not evil, which he might be.
Edited by Cultadium

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I like to think that the Rogue Trader CAN do almost any job. They might not be as good at any as the resident specialist, but many are in their grasp, and a second, even slightly inferior that can often be helpful. So, while the Arms Militant is likely going to be better at gunning, that's their job on YOUR ship, you can still stand alongside, doing the same thing, helping get it done faster. If you don't have one of everything (say your 4 person party has the Nav, Psyker, Priest, and AM, along with you, you can cover for the job that they don't, such as the Void Master. If the RT was as good at everything, they wouldn't need the team, except as bullet-sponges. One of the RT's abilities, if you will, is to be able to find that one diamond amongst the turds, and raise it to the point where it can serve, err aide them. You built the team. In a social setup, you SHOULD probably be the best character, as Priests and Seneschals both have details about them that CAN detract from their pirate lord, dashing charm.

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Well, To start, I'm going to make a spreadsheet of skills and abilities in order to assign tasks better.... The Golden man, I can probably get away with by disguising it, like you said cultadium (It's very polite and seemed like just...well, just like any chilled out dude). Anyhow, i need to come up with some ideas to give myself more control....such as a "speak when spoken to" kind of rule or something....where is a place i can find the most information on warrants of trade and their allowances of power?

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Unfortunately, I seem to be struggling to find a place in my Rogue Trader group and as the RT, I can't seem to find a place i the party. Yeah, i know, I own the ship and can command people but I can't seem to understand my role in order tocontribute, rather than just be like a glorified landlord. Everyone else seems to be better than pretty much everything statwise, so it always forces me to sit back and just give orders (not that that's not good but eh). Even my Fellowship is challenged by one of the other players for frick sake, though  I have the best weapon skill but that only comes usefull in combat thus far (obviously). So maybe i'm not fully grasping my role here becaus i'm pretty frustrated that i'm just sitting there not contributing very much. Can anyone help me to understand or send me a link to an artivle that can help me understand my capabilities and thus allow me to contribute more often than the occasional buying session when we get done with missions? Also, maybe others who need help with understanding their roles can be helped as well here, so other people, feel free to ask. (yes I'm still very new to all of this)

 

You can make a pretty good combatant out of a Rogue Trader.   In a lot of other respects you're a jack of all trades but your GM should be allowing you to set the agenda of where the ship goes, how you go about accomplishing your endeavors, etc.  You're the decider.   

 

Also - Renowned Warrant talent, rank 1, gives you a +10 interaction with anyone who grasps what the warrant is, which means any high level Imperial official.   It seems to me like you should be the one who does the negotiating with muckety mucks.  Let the Seneschal haggle with merchants, you're dining with the planetary governor.

Edited by Fortinbras

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Never forget that a Rogue Trader speaks with the Word of the God-Emperor outside of settled space.  He IS Imperial Law and Faith.  That kind of power is purely role playing, though there is the +10% mechanic.  End of the day, Rule of Cool it and you should be fine.  Outside of Imperial Space, your RT can do whatever he wants and no member of the crew can say otherwise.  Play that up, and have fun with it. (though, I'd avoid outright abuse... your command crew are your chosen companions and advisers, not slaves.)

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where is a place i can find the most information on warrants of trade and their allowances of power?

 

I think I listed everything tbh.

 

As far as gaining more control.

 

You could have control of 50 Battle servitors hardwired directly into your brain.. and not fund the same initiative for your tech priest.

 

Sabastian Yorke did something like that with an antagonist so I don't see why a player couldn't do it

 

Long term bribery might work better though, If you help me get 25 profit factor I'll buy you a nova cannon, Saint blessed Carpace armor, A Gold plated Valkyrie, A genetics lab the size of a cargo bay with a small arena where we can clone tyranids and giant worms and have them battle to the death. etc. Of course then you have to refuse to buy them said stuff until you've actually gotten the PF.

Edited by Cultadium

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where is a place i can find the most information on warrants of trade and their allowances of power?

 

Into The Storm has a Dynasty creation path, that can help you build a "history" for your Warrant, which I strongly recommend. In general you need to have a conversation between GM and players to lay this out, because not all Warrants are created equal. In general the older they are, the more freedom is granted. If you just have a Letter of Marque, it's possible that you are a Rogue Trader, but are required to drop everything if asked by the Battlefleet (leading your ships to suffer a higher-than-average series of comm fails) or some other mandatory and annoying restriction.

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Heya,

 

I've not seen you (OP) talk much about your interactions. Mainly just that you don't seem to know what to do with yourself. You seem confused that your other members of the party are better at things, probably combat and tech stuff or whatever. But you don't seem to mention what you as a Rogue Trader do, and what you could be doing. A lot of this is role play. Opportunities arise that can be turned into really fun role playing moments, if your GM is creative with you and can function on the fly. I really suggest you look into the wonderful world of Fellowship and other "social" aspects of the game. It's not all about weapons and gear and passing tests to do amazing things. A conversation that gets swayed towards what you want, changes everything in a big way. Try to use social and information skills to get things. You can force your GM to give you information so you can make better choices for the group.

 

Some things to consider:

 

High Fellowship. Max it out.

 

Charm - Use this all the time to convince people of your view on something. This is a big deal. It's versus their Willpower. Notice every rank, Charm gets better? +10, +20. Charm+20 with a Fellowship of 60-something will result in a big range of a roll and you'll usually wind up changing the game in a big way. Just by doing this. It can be really fun and useful. Explore this!

 

Blather - Confuse your target. Open up a whole new line of action for your other party members.

 

Deceive - Totally fooling someone of what's going on is insanely fun. "You will give me your entire ship, or my death star will destroy your homeworld!" "How dare you challenge me in a fight? I wield the sword of a thousand suns!" You can be super creative with this.

 

Intimidate - See if you can get your GM to allow Intimidate to run from your Fellowship or Intelligence, instead of Strength. And only use it for social interaction. It's always been weird to me that it's a Strength test. But anyways, there's extra commentary that lets you use it as an interaction skill for social stuff. Intimidation is really nice though in terms of social play. Use it!

 

Scrutiny - See through their lies! Help change the course of a conversation just by giving them the evil eye of scrutiny!

 

As for combat:

 

Light Power Armour

Dual wield weapons & pistols - Thunderhammers & Inferno pistols or Flamer pistols.

You can get all this stuff fairly easy with acquisition rolls easy.

 

Very best,

Utherix, Tenebrae, Cymbel and 2 others like this

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The short answer is... As long as you are not in official Imperial Space, you can do whatever you want. Fraternize with Xenos, Heretics, Animus Silica(AIs) - whatever you want. The Rogue Trader IS THE LAW, much like Judge Dredd, in the Koronus Expanse.

An Inquisitor or Arbites has no power in the Koronus, other than what they personally can bring to the table which may be plenty... But once you get back into Imperial space there will be hell to pay if you've pissed off these organisations.

 

As the Rogue Trader its also your business to be larger than life, be unreasonable, make demands, charge that Xeno monstrosity and poke it to death - after all its the Arch Militants duty to see that your antics dont get you killed...

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The most important question is what sort of character do you want to play? There are some Rogue Trader to Only War conversions lying around that open up character building a little more, but at the cost of not defining a role as firmly. 

Hmm, can someone points to any of these conversions btw, or possibly a BC one...? After playing Black Crusade alot the Rank system feels so... restrictive and un-intuitive...

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What Drach said.  Your Seneschal should be a spymaster and merchant, dealing with little details and arranging for the local crime lords, pirate princes, Guard regiments and naval patrols to be indebted to you or otherwise not in your way.

 

That said, when you tow a crippled and scavenged Imperial Navy frigate into Port Wander and claim it as salvage, the Navy can ask "where did you get that" and you are 100% justified in replying "I found it, now pay me and piss off."

 

As long as you are outside Imperial space proper (such as the Koronus Expanse) you as an individual have the authority to do anything you want... as long as you send an appropriate tithe back to the Imperium.  As long as they get their cut and you don't obviously run afoul of the Inquisition or turn to Chaos, the Imperium doesn't care.  Arbitrators, known for keeping the structures of the Imperium nice and orderly, have to ask (nicely, even) you to come back to the station-house after you shoot an Adept in the face right in front of them "so that the proper paperwork can be filed."  And you are justified in saying "No, I'm busy exploiting the Expanse as is my Emperor-given right and duty."

 

The other party members are your tools- of course they do certain things better than you, just as a boltgun kills better than a fist or a screwdriver drives screws than clutching fingers.  It is their duty and their privilege to serve you; just as the boltgun and the screwdriver are naturally tools, so too are your companions.  They may (and should) excel in their tasks, but you are the engine which drives them, the figure which gives them purpose.

 

So be arrogant.  Be a jerk.  Be pompous.  Be greedy.  Take your minions for granted, then punish them for failing you.  Model yourself after Darth Vader, for your power is equally absolute so long as you are within your sphere of influence. Or model yourself after a Viking high chief, commanding with an easy, but firm hand and sharing the spoils of your victories with your vassal-servants.  I also recommend reviewing the "You know you're playing Rogue Trader" thread and treating it as a to-do list.

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That said, when you tow a crippled and scavenged Imperial Navy frigate into Port Wander and claim it as salvage, the Navy can ask "where did you get that" and you are 100% justified in replying "I found it, now pay me and piss off."

 

If you happened to have "engaged in aggressive negotiations" said Frigate and "salvaged it," hopefully you blocked their Astropath from sending messages, jammed radio waves, "disposed" of all survivors, and mind wiped the crew on your ship was in not so faithful/loyal to you.  If not, "Pirate branded you will be," in a Yoda voice. 

 

 

The other party members are your tools- of course they do certain things better than you, just as a boltgun kills better than a fist or a screwdriver drives screws than clutching fingers.  It is their duty and their privilege to serve you; just as the boltgun and the screwdriver are naturally tools, so too are your companions.  They may (and should) excel in their tasks, but you are the engine which drives them, the figure which gives them purpose.

All though I do agree with this (to an extent), it's a horrible way to play if you are too.....  bossy? (Not quite the word I'm lucking for).  No player wants to get pushed around by another player in game.  With that said, you very well can't push around the AdMech, Astropath, or the Navigator PC/NPC's.  Heck, for that matter, pushing around your Arch-Militant could get you "accidently" killed when attacked by a wild beast exploring a planet, the Void-Master could say the shuttle vented itself while in space due a "hull breach," the Missionary can one day leave your employment, and then later you hear you are branded a heretic by the Ecc. because of some religious zealot named (enter Missionary's name).  Just saying.

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The best way to handle the "RT is boss but i dont want to literally boss around the other characters" issue is as follows:

  • You get to a situation where a decision by a leadership figure needs to be made.
  • Have an out of character discussion with the other players, asking what they would like to happen.
  • Come to a consensus (RT decides ties for obvious reasons) about what to do.
  • RT acts out the decision and orders appropriate characters to action.

This means everyone feels listened to, even if it is only out of character, and the RT comes across as a confident leader type character.

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