Phargos Hex at HATE


Aug 29, 2012
Hi all,

I am posting background here for a campaign that will be running at HATE (Hackney Area Tabletop Enthusiasts) at Bethnal Green Working Men's Club in London.


In 4591875.M41, all contact was lost with the ancient world of Phargos Hex on the edge of the Maelstrom Zone. Following the loss of astropathic contact, several Imperial Navy, Adeptus Mechanicus Explorator, and even Rogue Trader recon missions were dispatched to investigate. None of these missions were able to report success in locating the system, nor even find any trace evidence of its fate. The entire system had simply disappeared, never to be seen again. Or so it seemed.


Phargos Hex History
Phargos Hex has a long, if generally unremarkable history. Records indicate perpetual human habitation dating back to The Great Crusade, with the already civilised and technically advanced world brought into compliance without significant conflict. Since approximately 5000 years ago, human life has been concentrated in the minor tower hive, Agartha. Various ecological and climatic changes left the world mostly barren, and Agartha has relied on agri-worlds for approximately half of its food supply since that time.


Imperial Presence
The system is of only moderate interest to the Imperium beyond its capacity to provide Imperial Guard regiments, fill the Black Ships and provide manufactured goods. The extensive asteroid fields at the extremities of the system have proved largely impractical to exploit due their highly irregular, unpredictable patterns. The planet has had its own stable government for thousands of years and has shown little sign of internal unrest. For this reason, Imperial presence is sparse, with a minimal number of Adeptus Arbites and an Imperial Governor largely content to remain within his Spire at the tip of Agartha. It is not unknown for small Imperial Guard detachments and even smaller Astartes detachments to make use of the orbital AdMech facility en route to other locations but it is almost unheard of for either group to make planetfall.


AdMech Presence
Much interest in the world came from AdMech Explorator missions investigating reports of STC fragments. Although some data fragments recovered between M32 and M33 did prove of value in reconstruction of partial templates found elsewhere, these were of only moderate military and technological utility. One interesting quirk of the world, however, was that repeats of commonly known STC templates and some of the fragments already recovered were retrieved from a large number of isolated systems at sites scattered around the planet. This made the planet useful as a training destination for junior AdMech learning the process of data discovery and extraction in real-life situations. Small archeotech hoards still turn up from time to time, though not of sufficient size to interest the AdMech, nor frequently enough to interest serious scavengers. The AdMech orbital training facility, though less well-manned than in previous times, still operates and can service Imperial needs when necessary.


Outer System
The Phargos Hex system has been unable to maintain system-wide security integrity due to a large number of stable jump points and extensive asteroid fields in the outer system. This has, for the most part, been limited to void pirates and small groups of smugglers. Xenos presence in the system consists primarily of transitory Greenskin warbands, with Blood Axe and Freebooter groups most common amongst these. Eldar corsairs have also been known to seek temporary shelter in the outer system. With the AdMech facility in orbit, these small forces have rarely been known to approach the planet, and actual offensive actions are all but unheard of, with any attempts resulting in being blasted out of the sky as vessels identified as hostile leave the surface.


The Event
On 4591875.M41 the short-range conveyor ship Willing Servant made a warp jump from the system's primary jump point. By ship's reckoning, the vessel reappeared at the same jump point some 32 standard hours later, by which time some 3 standard hours had passed in-system. Assuming some sort of system failure, the vessel returned to the orbital docking base from which it had departed to run diagnostic checks.
In the meantime, another vessel, the Wary Saint, had also attempted and failed to depart from the same jump point. Wary Saint made a second attempt, also resulting in an unplanned return. Imperial Governor Zhuhar Khutan ordered astropathic communication be made with any available nearby system with an astropathic choir. The attempt was entirely unsuccessful, with the trio of astropaths involved reporting that their attempted contact simply wouldn't work. They could detect other astropaths to direct their messages to, but no contact could be established.
Attempts were subsequently made by other vessels from the primary jump point and several secondary jump points. All attempts simply resulted in a period of warp travel after which the ship returned to the starting point, having experienced as much as twenty times as long as had passed in the system itself.
Realising the system was fully isolated Governor Khutan ordered all Arbites forces back to the upper reaches of Agartha to protect Imperial facilities. Domestic authorities similarly entrenched their position, with Planetary Defense Forces securing the main hydroponics enclosures and other food farms. With no incoming food from nearby agri-worlds, it would not be long before the current political situation on Phargos Hex became unstable.


Within a standard week of the system becoming isolated rumours began to circulate amongst the general population. Panic led to food riots within days, despite the fact warehouses had enough food to last for months. Over a period of seven to eight weeks, large swathes of the lower and mid-level hive were destroyed or damaged. What foodstocks had existed were entirely used up, with more being destroyed in the carnage than was actually eaten. Whereas the criminal element had previously been of the mostly organised type, with protection racketeering and vice the most profitable areas, numerous gangs now sprang up, controlling territory and resources and enforcing what little law could be established.


The common citizenry of the mid-levels mostly cowers in fear. Little industry takes place, and in most areas, daily survival is the only concern. Scavenging is becoming a way of life, and a barter system is all that keeps most people fed. Starvation is rife, and only those strong or cunning enough survive.
In the lower levels, the situation is even worse, with cannibalism plainly evident, violence endemic and rumours of even worse unsavoury practices beginning to emerge. In the most desperate situations, people make the most desperate pleas for help, and are heard.
In the upper spires, food is sufficient, if not plentiful, but authority springs from the barrel of a gun, and many of those holding the guns have ties to those cut off in the levels below. Armaments and ammunition finds its way to those who need them from unscrupulous fences in the PDF.


The Imperial enclave at the tip of Agartha seems secure, but the Governors authority stems from the Imperium, whose forces may appear at any time. With no way to call for support, is his position as secure as he thinks?
In the skies above, The Adeptus Mechanicus remain as inscrutable as ever. The orbital facility is unlikely to fall to attack, but since the isolation began, contact has become increasingly sporadic, and who knows what is in the mind of their tech priests?
In the outer system, void pirates, corsairs, freebooterz and smugglers have all tried and failed to leave via their own semi-stable jump points. Food is running out, and where else is there to turn?
As yet unknown to anyone, in-system or out of it, one of the Rogue Trader missions has, in fact, found Phargos Hex... but is now unable to leave to report their discovery.
Perhaps most menacing of all, an unidentified Space Hulk has also drifted out of the warp and into the system. Who knows what horrors it brings?
Great write up! Looking forward to seeing this play out! Are the campaign members on here/going to do write ups too or is this a GM write up only?
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Right, here are the rules for the Christmas special scenario:

Phanta Claws is Coming to Town

Children throughout the hive cities live in fear of Phanta Claws, the legendary being who comes but once year, sneaking in through the vents of the habstacks and slum-apts, then stealing away with the few meager possessions left in a stocking that the household has scraped together to placate him. And where the offerings do not satisfy Phanta Claws or, Emperor forbid, there are no offerings, the residents will be found dead the next morning, though rarely in condition to be recognised by anything other than their dental records.

Rumour has it that Phanta Claws is a daemon on the warp, forged from the stuff of children's nightmares in the same way that people's despair feeds Papa Nurgle, their anger feeds Khorne, their base desires feed Slaanesh and their deviousness feeds Tzeentch. However, most adults eventually grow out of their belief in such fairy tales, so it is only the youngest, with at least the faintest wisps of childhood belief lingering, who can still see him.

This year, incredibly, Phanta Claws has not only materialised on Phargos Hex, but he has been cornered by juves from several gangs. As they take potshots at Phanta and his zombie elves, some of the loot from Santa's bag has been flying out.

This is a Fistmas scenario for multiple gangs to take part in...


Each player takes it in turn to set up a piece of terrain, as per the normal gang fight rules. As with the gang fight scenario, 4'x4' is the ideal terrain size.


Only the youngest members of the gang, with small shreds of their childhood fears intact can possibly see Phanta Claws. Each of the gangs taking part will be represented by their most innocent gang members, determined by selecting the gang members with the lowest number of experience points to fill up their allowed quota. It will be taken on trust that these gang members will be have their normal equipment, no extras for this encounter. The number of gangers per gang will depend on the number of gangs involved:

2-3 gangs - four members each (and you may wish to switch to a 3'x3' table)

4-5 gangs - three members each

6 or more gangs - two members each

(With 6 or more gangs, it will probably be best to split up into two separate encounters and run simultaneous fights on neighbouring 4'x4' tables)


Set up Phanta Claws within 3" of the centre of the board. Randomise the level he is on, if this spot has more than one level. Then take enough zombie elves so that Phanta and the zombies together equal the number of gangs in the encounter. Place each of these 2d6" in a random direction from Phanta, and randomise the level they are on.

Each gang will then roll a d6, and place one gang member each in the order the dice shows. Then proceed around again, each placing one gang member until all gang members are placed.

Instead of rolling to see who has the first turn, all gangers should roll a d6 and add their initiative. They may add +1 if they are armed only with H2H weapons and/or pistols and have no armour. Any model with a special/heavy weapon has -1 and any model with armour has a further -1 to their roll. This will be the order in which models act. Each model will complete a full move-shoot-combat sequence, then the next model will act. Any models who are tied should roll off, again adding initiative and using modifiers to determine who acts first.

At the start of each turn, roll again for the new order.

It is probably worth having a pad of paper with numbers 1-13 down the side of each sheet to record the order each turn.


On every turn except the first, Phanta Claws will also be trying to escape or fight his way out. Use suitable method to determine who will be in charge of Phanta. This player can move Phanta 2d6 inches in any direction he likes. Phanta cannot fly, but can leap across gaps up to d6", climb walls using his normal movement to do so, and fall without risking damage, using up 1" of movement for every 2" he falls. If Phanta moves into base-to-base contact with a model he will attack with the following profile:

M2d6 WS5 BS- S5 T5 W- I5 A2 LD-

He will not take downed models out of action if he is in base to base contact - he will simply pass on by and leave them to live or die without caring.

Phanta Claws, as every child knows, cannot be killed, but if he takes a wound, a small amount of loot will fall from his sack. If he is wounded in combat, the model inflicting the wound will take possession of a loot counter. If he is wounded by shooting, the loot will fly 2d6" in a random direction from Phanta, stopping if it hits a wall.

Phanta's zombie elfs will all be controlled by another player, also chosen randomly. They will move 1d6" in a direction chosen by the player. They can climb, but only using ladders, and can take falling damage. Each zombie elf has 3 wounds. Each time they are wounded, they will drop a loot counter, in the same way as Phanta, above. Upon dropping their third loot counter, they will drop to the floor and crumble to sparkly dust.

Md6 WS3 BS- S3 T5 W3 I3 A1 LD-

Although the most obvious target is Phanta Claws and his zombie elves, gang members can also attack each other in attempt to gain advantage or steal loot.


The scenario ends once either half of the gangs (rounding up) have all of their models down or out of action, as Phanta will be able to escape, or once one gang gas collected a total of 6 loot counters and makes good their own escape, again allowing Phanta to get away.


+d6 Surviving

+5 per wounding hit on Phanta, zombie elves or gang members

+d3 per loot counter collected

+d3 for surviving a round of combat with Phanta Claws


For each loot counter collected from a zombie elf, roll a d6. On a roll of 1-3, it is worth 2d6 credits. On a roll of 4-6 it is worth d6x5 credits. For each loot counter collected from Phanta, first roll a d6. On a roll of 1-5, it is worth d6x5 credits. On a roll of 6, make a roll on the rare items trade chart and this item is added to the gang stash. Each gang can only roll on the rare items chart once per encounter in this way. (If you want any more, you'll have to wait for next Fistmas!)
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Very much looking to reading how this goes. What Tyranid was used for the monster, I don't recognise it?
It is not actually a Tyranid. I can't remember the flipping name of the range. Begins with a C I think....
Ooooh! Those look nice, and they have a bit of an old school feel to them. Gotta love a sphincter door... Have these been added to the alt minis sources thread?

Thanks for the info!