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Rogue Trader RPG - I'm...a Captain!?


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#1
Lodovico

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Hey everyone,

So the other day a friend invited me to play Rouge Trader with a group of about 5 or so folks. However none wanted to be captain and that inglorious position appears to have fallen upon me. I do not own any of the Rouge Trader books (only Dark Heresy because that one interests me most) so I do not know what to expect and tomorrow is the first gaming session.. if we make it past character creation. So my question is... I need advice on how to handle this... situation. So far it looks like I'll either start with a transport, a raider, or a frigate and I was leaning toward a frigate. But other than that.. I am clueless. So.. what do captains do in Rouge Trader and cannot, as well as what do I have to be aware of???

Thanks in advance.
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#2
igotsmeakabob!!

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I assume by Captain, you mean Rogue Trader (as Captain isn't a RT class :lol:). You're the head of your Rogue Trader house, a Dynasty based on your Warrant of Trade granted by the Imperium that allows you to explore beyond the reaches of known space and claim entire sectors and planets in the name of the God-Emperor and your Dynasty. Your Warrant, and thus your Dynasty, can be anywhere from centuries to millennia old, determined by a roll that inversely provides starting profit/ship points.
As the leader of your house, you own the ship (I'd recommend Frigate) and every one of the 20,000+ souls aboard. Amongst these are probably about 300-500 security personnel and tens of officers of varying rank, as well as your fellow players who are basically your advisers and commanding ship crew.

The name of the game in RT is Profit. It's an abstract number that combines your liquid assets, prestige, more solid assets like colonies, and political pull. Your goal in the game is to amass more and more Profit. Your goals will be to claim new worlds to colonize, seek opportunities to expand your influence and holdings, and explore new territories filled with unknown adversaries and riches.

Compared to Dark Heresy, where you take the role of lowly Inquisitorial agents with little power... you're rich and influential. Not even the Inquisition can mess with you without some reason first. However, connections are important and can factor into your Profit so don't piss them off. You start with powerful gear, as the RT in particular. Your stats are higher by default, and you have more skills. Every once in a while (once per session or two) your GM should allow you to roll for new gear, the acquisition of which is based on your Profit and the rarity of the item. My game's Rogue Trader bought, for instance, a squad of personal guards trained in the use of Bolters. So nearly every game, we had between 5 or 10 bolter-toting soldiers backing us up. It's pretty fun stuff!

Edited by igotsmeakabob!!, 11 February 2012 - 07:34 AM.

Don't put your trust in revolutions. They always come around again. That's why they're called revolutions. People die, and nothing changes.

How do they rise up?

#3
Olis

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When determining the character of your Rogue Trader, may I recommend adding a sprinkle of Jack Sparrow into whatever you've decided how your Captain shall act? A tiny bit of the crazy adds so much more fun. :)
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#4
Lodovico

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I assume by Captain, you mean Rogue Trader (as Captain isn't a RT class :)). You're the head of your Rogue Trader house, a Dynasty based on your Warrant of Trade granted by the Imperium that allows you to explore beyond the reaches of known space and claim entire sectors and planets in the name of the God-Emperor and your Dynasty. Your Warrant, and thus your Dynasty, can be anywhere from centuries to millennia old, determined by a roll that inversely provides starting profit/ship points.
As the leader of your house, you own the ship (I'd recommend Frigate) and every one of the 20,000+ souls aboard. Amongst these are probably about 300-500 security personnel and tens of officers of varying rank, as well as your fellow players who are basically your advisers and commanding ship crew.

The name of the game in RT is Profit. It's an abstract number that combines your liquid assets, prestige, more solid assets like colonies, and political pull. Your goal in the game is to amass more and more Profit. Your goals will be to claim new worlds to colonize, seek opportunities to expand your influence and holdings, and explore new territories filled with unknown adversaries and riches.

Compared to Dark Heresy, where you take the role of lowly Inquisitorial agents with little power... you're rich and influential. Not even the Inquisition can mess with you without some reason first. However, connections are important and can factor into your Profit so don't piss them off. You start with powerful gear, as the RT in particular. Your stats are higher by default, and you have more skills. Every once in a while (once per session or two) your GM should allow you to roll for new gear, the acquisition of which is based on your Profit and the rarity of the item. My game's Rogue Trader bought, for instance, a squad of personal guards trained in the use of Bolters. So nearly every game, we had between 5 or 10 bolter-toting soldiers backing us up. It's pretty fun stuff!

Wow! Thank you for the advice! How often does the Rogue Trader get into action? Will I be more like the commander who calls the shots from a command center or will I have to get dirty often?


When determining the character of your Rogue Trader, may I recommend adding a sprinkle of Jack Sparrow into whatever you've decided how your Captain shall act? A tiny bit of the crazy adds so much more fun. :)

I was thinking that since it's Grim Dark I'll save the escape story using hair from my back for a later date :D
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#5
Dosjetka

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Wow! Thank you for the advice! How often does the Rogue Trader get into action? Will I be more like the commander who calls the shots from a command center or will I have to get dirty often?

I wouldn't really know, but it really depends on his character.

Some really good advice here, cheers chaps :)

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#6
Olis

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Wow! Thank you for the advice! How often does the Rogue Trader get into action? Will I be more like the commander who calls the shots from a command center or will I have to get dirty often?


It's up to you, he's your character. There's all sorts of shenanigans you can get up to as a Rogue Trader, especially if your GM starts chucking warp- and time-travel events about. :)
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#7
igotsmeakabob!!

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Wow! Thank you for the advice! How often does the Rogue Trader get into action? Will I be more like the commander who calls the shots from a command center or will I have to get dirty often?

Well I can only site the RT's I've played with as examples, but being the Rogue Trader is a very hands-on position. Your role is a very prestigious one, but it's also quite precarious. Dynasties can be catapulted into history by the smallest detail leading to a great discovery, or can be broken and forever forgotten with one botched deal. There are very few people who you truly trust, and as such you might feel the need to get involved as often as possible with matters of all sorts. This is also reflected by the wide array of skills available over time to the Rogue Trader.

In addition is the fact that in order for a RT to lay claim to a shipwreck or world, he must often be the first to set foot upon it. 'First' is of course a relevant term in the business, as another Rogue Trader may have gotten to it first.. in which case you might just have to make sure that you're the last to leave it :)

In short, you're the representative of your Dynasty and the proof of its existence (aside from your Warrant of Trade, of course, which is usually kept in an unbelievably secure place aboard your ship). You're going to be playing often. You have NPC officers and ratings to handle everyday ship business, or to keep the ship steady while you go plundering Xenos ruins searching for a rare ore to market to Hive nobles, but discover that the caves the ore is found in are possessed by long-deceased Xenos spirits (as our group once did).
Don't put your trust in revolutions. They always come around again. That's why they're called revolutions. People die, and nothing changes.

How do they rise up?

#8
Dosjetka

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or to keep the ship steady while you go plundering Xenos ruins searching for a rare ore to market to Hive nobles, but discover that the caves the ore is found in are possessed by long-deceased Xenos spirits (as our group once did).

That sounds like a good one :)

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#9
Olis

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*Furious scribbling*
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#10
igotsmeakabob!!

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Yeah, giant statues being animated are no laughing matter...
Unless one statue's a clown.
Don't put your trust in revolutions. They always come around again. That's why they're called revolutions. People die, and nothing changes.

How do they rise up?

#11
Lodovico

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I stuck with the position due to knowing the most about 40K lore so whattaya know! Also, our entire crew is female with a freeboota who is apparently so strong that he can almost lift a Leman Russ :D. I'm an Emperor "sister" who originated on a penal colony and most of the PC's are criminals themselves. (YAY!) I've somehow acquired a cobra-class destroyer which houses a death cult and the machine spirit likes to get into fights (nicccce). I really liked the character creation as everything seems to have fallen into place for my character. (More so than Shadowrun which was rather difficult to do... or I'm just more familiar with 40k :cuss) Either way I need to do more research and freshen up on certain aspects of the 40K universe. I'm taking this somewhat seriously because it's my second RPG game and I want it to last a little longer than my first :D Besides, my character is in a position of authority and apparently I'm tougher than the Ork sooooo.... yeah. We did however come up with a great way to keep playing if everyone dies except the freeboota, we all evolve from his spores with him as the warboss.

Anyhoo, it appears that the GM is leaning toward stating that I've stolen the ship and I still have to decide on whether we pirate, privateer, explore, transport, and or trade. I was leaning toward privateering with a dose of exploring. I was/am seeing if the GM will allow me to say I stole the ship to spread name of the Emperor and bring judgement to those who would desecrate his name while bringing the light of Him to those who have lost it or do not yet know of it. And not owning any Rogue Trader books makes it a bit difficult for me to figure out some of the stuff.
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#12
Dosjetka

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Looks like a good start, though the characters are a tad strange :cuss We'll see how this works out, eh? :D

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#13
Lodovico

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Looks like a good start, though the characters are a tad strange :D We'll see how this works out, eh? ;)

Ludovic

Yeah the characters are juuuust a bit strange. I think our freeboota stated that he's only reason for joining our crew was that he punched me and I didn't fall down. On top of that he's our only medic and our explorator is probably going to be our acting navigator and celestial pilot lol. Such are the ways of the warp -_-


And I'll keep notes of the game when it happens so I'll do my best to keep anyone interested updated. It starts in 2 weeks because the GM is waiting for the GM screen thing.
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#14
madeofhate

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Make sure you have a good Navigator, if he rolls bad on determining your course of travel in the Empyrian, then you're boned. On the flip side of that if your Navigator rolls awesome, then you basically arrived at your destination last week!

#15
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Looks like a good start, though the characters are a tad strange :) We'll see how this works out, eh? ;)

Ludovic

Yeah the characters are juuuust a bit strange. I think our freeboota stated that he's only reason for joining our crew was that he punched me and I didn't fall down. On top of that he's our only medic and our explorator is probably going to be our acting navigator and celestial pilot lol. Such are the ways of the warp -_-


And I'll keep notes of the game when it happens so I'll do my best to keep anyone interested updated. It starts in 2 weeks because the GM is waiting for the GM screen thing.


If he has a device that lets him peer into the warp without suffering madness, then maybe he can pass as a really poor Navigator.

#16
madeofhate

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Knowing orks, he is probably there to get bigger and try to take on his own WAAAAAGH!!!!!

#17
igotsmeakabob!!

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Playing Orks and Kroot in Rogue Trader is an odd thing. You have trouble dealing with any Imperial authorities... in a 'typical' RT game the Ork/Kroot might feel left out of some roleplaying events... it's weird that they didn't include ELDAR of all things, a corsair is probably the most likely one of the three (maybe kroot too) to be found aboard a RT vessel.

The reasoning behind an Ork makes some sense, Orks are a lot more rational/not-orky when they're alone. They can even function as Mercenaries this way (as per RT). It's when Orks all get together in groups that they get more and more Orky, wanting to kill anything... so as long as the RT can keep the Ork crew member isolated from any sustained contact with other Orks, it's OK.
Do Orks release their reproduction spores all the time, or only upon death?
Don't put your trust in revolutions. They always come around again. That's why they're called revolutions. People die, and nothing changes.

How do they rise up?

#18
Olis

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Do Orks release their reproduction spores all the time, or only upon death?


Judging by one of the RT books, it's at least inferred to be a constant thing rather than on death. At some point the Ork can shed spores that'll grow into squigs, snots or grots, but not other Orks (that was left out). I doubt a lone Ork would spawn other Orks without help or there being more Orks about.
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#19
igotsmeakabob!!

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Because no mercenary is worth having to chase down grots in the bowels of your own ship. Mutants in the bilge are one thing, but orks are just trouble.
Don't put your trust in revolutions. They always come around again. That's why they're called revolutions. People die, and nothing changes.

How do they rise up?

#20
Olis

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Because no mercenary is worth having to chase down grots in the bowels of your own ship. Mutants in the bilge are one thing, but orks are just trouble.


Ah yes, well, the Ork PC is limited to small finite number of 'hangers on' in the book. I think the absolute maximum is something like three. Not that much of a problem, really.
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#21
Lodovico

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Playing Orks and Kroot in Rogue Trader is an odd thing. You have trouble dealing with any Imperial authorities... in a 'typical' RT game the Ork/Kroot might feel left out of some roleplaying events... it's weird that they didn't include ELDAR of all things, a corsair is probably the most likely one of the three (maybe kroot too) to be found aboard a RT vessel.

The reasoning behind an Ork makes some sense, Orks are a lot more rational/not-orky when they're alone. They can even function as Mercenaries this way (as per RT). It's when Orks all get together in groups that they get more and more Orky, wanting to kill anything... so as long as the RT can keep the Ork crew member isolated from any sustained contact with other Orks, it's OK.
Do Orks release their reproduction spores all the time, or only upon death?

Where'd you hear this about Orks on their own?? Was it in one of the RT books?
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#22
igotsmeakabob!!

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Playing Orks and Kroot in Rogue Trader is an odd thing. You have trouble dealing with any Imperial authorities... in a 'typical' RT game the Ork/Kroot might feel left out of some roleplaying events... it's weird that they didn't include ELDAR of all things, a corsair is probably the most likely one of the three (maybe kroot too) to be found aboard a RT vessel.

The reasoning behind an Ork makes some sense, Orks are a lot more rational/not-orky when they're alone. They can even function as Mercenaries this way (as per RT). It's when Orks all get together in groups that they get more and more Orky, wanting to kill anything... so as long as the RT can keep the Ork crew member isolated from any sustained contact with other Orks, it's OK.
Do Orks release their reproduction spores all the time, or only upon death?

Where'd you hear this about Orks on their own?? Was it in one of the RT books?

Rogue Trader: Into the Storm, if I remember right.
Don't put your trust in revolutions. They always come around again. That's why they're called revolutions. People die, and nothing changes.

How do they rise up?

#23
Karack Blackstone

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Playing Orks and Kroot in Rogue Trader is an odd thing. You have trouble dealing with any Imperial authorities... in a 'typical' RT game the Ork/Kroot might feel left out of some roleplaying events... it's weird that they didn't include ELDAR of all things, a corsair is probably the most likely one of the three (maybe kroot too) to be found aboard a RT vessel.

The reasoning behind an Ork makes some sense, Orks are a lot more rational/not-orky when they're alone. They can even function as Mercenaries this way (as per RT). It's when Orks all get together in groups that they get more and more Orky, wanting to kill anything... so as long as the RT can keep the Ork crew member isolated from any sustained contact with other Orks, it's OK.
Do Orks release their reproduction spores all the time, or only upon death?

Where'd you hear this about Orks on their own?? Was it in one of the RT books?

Rogue Trader: Into the Storm, if I remember right.


This is correct.

Also, as the ultimate leader of this little excursion force for "Da Emprah" in the case of your Ork, think of it this way: you can either lead by example or fiat. I recommend by example for one reason. Loyalty means so much in 40K that even though fiat (rule by force) is common, that does not mean that the Rogue Trader in question does so. It's your right to do things your way; so even if you don't agree with me, just the right to run things as you see fit, OP, is the point.




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