Schattelgeist - developing a 40k roleplay setting

HorribleHedgehog

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That's a great idea! I can already see how they could interact with the PCs.

I'm assuming the crew can't perform the rite of soul binding and thus make new astropaths on Schattelgeist - I figure that would require specialist equipment an explorator vessel wouldn't carry. Thus, they have begun to look for alternative methods of creating astropaths, and occasionally send down small "acquisition parties" to scrounge for technology and individuals with psychic potential. A group of PCs with psykers could be ambushed by one of these parties.

The mere knowledge of an existence of such a faction would present the PCs with a nice moral quandary. Do they rat them out to the powers that be, assuredly being rewarded both in material and favour, but condemning the entire civilization to horrible fates, or do they let them be and run the risk of an imperial raid on their homeworld should the crew ever find a way to communicate with the imperium?
 
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HorribleHedgehog

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I thought I'd have a go at the god-specific charts, and got the Khorne one done. As you can see, these will be simple d10 charts with mostly positive effects.


KHORNE-SPECIFIC MUTATIONS

1-2 - Muscular hypertrophy:
The character increases their Brawn rating by one and decreases their Agility rating by one.

3 - Flesh-fused Weapon: The character must pick one weapon in their possession. This weapon fuses into their hand and cannot be unequipped (two-handed weapons only fuse into one of the character's hands, leaving the rest free). The character must increase the difficulty of all checks requiring two hands twice. When using their flesh-fused weapon, they count their applicable weapon skill as being one point higher than usual. The flesh-fused weapon can still be modified.

4 - Skull face: The skin and musculature of the character's face melt away while their eyes bubble and run down their now-bony cheeks. The character must increase the difficulty of all Charm checks twice, and reduce the difficulty of all Coercion checks twice. This mutation replaces Horrifying Appearance should the character already have it, and if a character who already has a Skull Face rolls Horrifying Appearance, they must re-roll.

5 - Collar of Khorne: The character can reduce the difficulty of any checks to resist the effects of psychic powers once. When hit by a psychic power that deals damage the character reduces the damage by 3 points.

6 - Flesh hound of Khorne: The character receives a Flesh Hound of Khorne as a pet. The pet follows the commands of the player character, though if the PC commands their beast to perform an action that goes against the nature of the beast or their deity, the GM can force them to make a Leadership check to see if they succeed. The beast counts as a minion for purposes of critical injuries etc. in combat. If the beast is taken over their Wound or Strain threshold, they are banished back into the warp and need to be re-summoned with an appropriate summoning ritual. The beast cannot gain XP. See Bestiary for stats.

7 - Vampiric metabolism: Once per encounter, the character can recover 5 wounds by drinking the blood (at least a glassful) of any sentient being except themselves. Doing this in combat requires spending an Action or two Manoueveres, as well as a fresh source of blood within reach.

8 - Explosive strength: The character can increase the damage of any Melee or Brawl attack by taking on Strain. Each point of Strain suffered increases the damage of the attack by one. This can be done a maximum of three times per attack.

9 - Killer instinct: If the character's attack results in an enemy being taken over their Wound threshold (this includes enemies in minion groups), they immediately gain one bonus action. This can only happen once per round.

10 - Chosen of Khorne: The character rolls twice on this chart and applies both results.
 
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Punktaku

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BLASPHEMY! Khorne should be d8. ooh... or d88?

Slaanesh d6
Tzneetch d9 (d10 but the 0’s don’t count. Tzneetch is fickle that way...
Nurgle d7... hmm... to heck with Nurgle. they’re icky...
 

HorribleHedgehog

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Righto. I'm calling the waster tech done - there's a few details I'm not happy with but it's good enough. Time to move on.

qG8kbes.jpg

Which god's mutation chart should I do next?
 
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Punktaku

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Maybe the 10 spot could be changed to “roll on Favors of Patron Diety” chart instead of “roll twice”? In the original RoC books, your champions could earn lesser demon companions (animals and steeds), demon weapons, demon armor, etc. you could almost do the Favors as a generic chart flavored by the patrons. for example:
1 Daemonic Steed: Your patron grants you a daemonic steed to haul your glorious butt around. (Juggernaut of Khorne, Steed of Slaanesh, Palanquin of Nurgle, Disc of Tzneetch).

2) Guardian Beast: Your patron grants you a beast companion to share your journey. (Flesh Hound of Khorne, Nurglings, Pink or Blue Horrors of Tzneetch, Beast of Slaanesh) Maybe Undivided can get Spawn?

You could have followers of Chaos Undivided pick one, but they cannot choose the same Patron for each favor. (so choose wisely)
 

HorribleHedgehog

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Excuses for the late reply, I've been a bit overwhelmed with RL the last few days.

Tzneetch was always my 2nd favorite.

What are you including Demonic Armor under? did i miss it?
Maybe the 10 spot could be changed to “roll on Favors of Patron Diety” chart instead of “roll twice”? In the original RoC books, your champions could earn lesser demon companions (animals and steeds), demon weapons, demon armor, etc. you could almost do the Favors as a generic chart flavored by the patrons. for example:
1 Daemonic Steed: Your patron grants you a daemonic steed to haul your glorious butt around. (Juggernaut of Khorne, Steed of Slaanesh, Palanquin of Nurgle, Disc of Tzneetch).

2) Guardian Beast: Your patron grants you a beast companion to share your journey. (Flesh Hound of Khorne, Nurglings, Pink or Blue Horrors of Tzneetch, Beast of Slaanesh) Maybe Undivided can get Spawn?

You could have followers of Chaos Undivided pick one, but they cannot choose the same Patron for each favor. (so choose wisely)
I think I'll try to make do with just the Gifts charts - I'm hoping to have all the rules wrangling done by early autumn when I'll start seeing my gaming group again so I can start running a game on them as soon as possible. A tall order with my snail-pace writing and constant art distractions, so I figure I'd best try to keep things as light as possible.

Guardian Beast sounds good - I think I can fit that in the God-specific charts. The Khorne one has at least one result I don't like (Tireless Physiology feels quite bland) so it can replace that one.

I think that Daemonic armour & weapons will be late-game gear modifications, to give the Heretek a specialist purpose. Of course, I could make it so that possessed gear can be acquired via Gifts rolls too, but only the Heretek can upgrade them, or something... In any case, I'll have to write stats for bound daemon modifications themselves before giving this matter more thought.

Daemonic steeds are unfortunately right out, at least for the time being, as EotE does not have rules for mounts and I still have plenty of more basic rules that need writing. I might add them at a later point if I have time, though - mounted warriors would certainly fit right in with Schattelgeist's low-tech tribal and feudalist societies...
 
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Punktaku

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The Heretek performing a ritual of binding for the armor to the champion would be a cool ability. The early fluff just had it happen (demon moves in, armor binds to flesh), but maybe it just works slightly differently here. It would be a cool right of passage type quest if the PCs have to hunt down and capture a demon to bind into the armor (and/or weapon).

Mounts could work simply like they do in Warcrack. Summon the mount, ride it around (increased move trait) but you have to dismount/dismiss them to do things like use spells, skills, or enter combat (ranged or close). They also can't carry stuff. Just the PC and their gear. It may not make sense in Imperial Space, but the PCs aren't in Imperial Space.:)
 
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HorribleHedgehog

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Apologies again - RL has been busy with visiting relatives and stuff. It's all winding down now, though, so hopefully I can get this project back on track.

The Heretek performing a ritual of binding for the armor to the champion would be a cool ability. The early fluff just had it happen (demon moves in, armor binds to flesh), but maybe it just works slightly differently here. It would be a cool right of passage type quest if the PCs have to hunt down and capture a demon to bind into the armor (and/or weapon).

Mounts could work simply like they do in Warcrack. Summon the mount, ride it around (increased move trait) but you have to dismount/dismiss them to do things like use spells, skills, or enter combat (ranged or close). They also can't carry stuff. Just the PC and their gear. It may not make sense in Imperial Space, but the PCs aren't in Imperial Space.:)
I think I'm going to work daemonic armour into the gifts chart - If it were Heretek-only it'd completely exclude parties without one. The Heretek, I think, will be special enough because they won't have to rely on a small-percentage dice roll to get daemons to possess their goodies! Anyway, like I said, I'll need to do the actual stats for daemon possession mods first.

I feel WoW-style mounts would be a stopgap measure at best - having a dead killy daemonic mount and not riding it into combat just feels fundamentally wrong to me. I'm starting to feel like mounted rules will be a necessity at some point, but I'll try to finish the essentials first.

I updated the Khornate mutation chart to include guardian beast (replacing tireless physiology):

6 - Flesh hound of Khorne: The character receives a Flesh Hound of Khorne as a pet. The pet follows the commands of the player character, though if the PC commands their beast to perform an action that goes against the nature of the beast or their deity, the GM can force them to make a Leadership check to see if they succeed. The beast counts as a minion for purposes of critical injuries etc. in combat. If the beast is taken over their Wound or Strain threshold, they are banished back into the warp and need to be re-summoned with an appropriate summoning ritual. The beast cannot gain XP. See Bestiary for stats.

Which reminds me I'll have to whip up stats for common enemies and beasts... there's no end to the work.

Last but not least, another character piece I finished quite some time ago, but forgot to post. Initially I intended them to be a Siren, but ultimately they ended up being a Diviner. Suffice to say, they were a ton of work and I burned out on these character portraits at least for a while, which is probably a good thing.

aAQ5tt0.jpg
 
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HorribleHedgehog

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I've been once again distracted by RL festivities, but now I'm once more free to waste my time on frivolities like hobby projects. As I'm hoping to have this thing in playable shape by autumn, it's about time to start getting things done. I figured I should get to finishing the psychic powers section before tackling the Tzeentchian mutations chart, as that one will likely deal with psychic powers, so I whipped up a sample psychic power tree for basic pyromantic nastiness - how does it look to you people? Does the progression of upgrades make sense?

LVkeAoQ.jpg

It's somewhat more powerful than its EotE equivalents, but I'm hoping to balance that by making casting riskier. I should get around to writing that Perils of the Warp table...
 
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HorribleHedgehog

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Power tree for Biomantic Enhancement.

g9ymyFf.jpg

I also toned down the experience costs of Pyromantic Conjuration upgrades a bit. I don't want to make life for psykers too difficult.

NcANXsl.jpg
 

HorribleHedgehog

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Okay, it's about time I did something about that Perils of the Warp table I've been harping on about. Due to the properties of the Force die, a psychic check on a single die will result in a Perils of the Warp roll on 7 times out of 12 - hence it's important that the table isn't too unforgiving, unless the player has a big modifier on the roll as a result of rolling lots of black pips and/or having additional modifiers.



PERILS OF THE WARP RESULT

01-30 - Nothing untoward: The psychic power works as intended with no ill effects.

31-40 - Psychic exertion: The psychic power works as intended, but the caster immediately suffers 5 strain.

41-50 - Minor psychic backlash: The psychic power works as intended, but the caster immediately suffers a number of wounds equal to the amount of Force points they rolled.

51-60 - Power surge: The psychic power works as intended and the caster gains 1 additional Force point to use on the power, however the caster immediately suffers a number of wounds and strain equal to the amount of Force points they rolled (plus the extra point granted by this result).

61-70 - Temptation: Daemons whisper sordid promises to the psyker's mind. The psychic power works as intended. The GM hands the caster a piece of paper detailing an offer the daemons make. The caster immediately gains 1d3 insanity points.

71-80 - Shadow in the warp
: The psychic power works as intended, but the caster immediately gains 1d6 insanity points.

81-90 - Miscast: The psychic power works, but with one less Force point than rolled. If this would reduce the total to zero, the power fails to work.

81-90 - Severe miscast: The psychic power fails to work. The caster immediately suffers 5 strain as they struggle to prevent their powers from going haywire.

91-100 - Tithe of blood: The caster must immediately suffer a Critical Injury or the power fails to work. If they elect to suffer the injury the power works as intended.

101-110 - The horror: The caster must pass either a Hard Discipline, Cool, or Vigilance check or the power fails to work. If they pass, the power works as intended. Whether or not they pass, they gain 1d6 insanity points.

101-110 - Rampant mutation: The power fails to work, and the caster must immediately make an unmodified roll on the Gifts from the Gods table.

111-120 - Major psychic backlash: The power fails to work, and the caster and every character within Short range of the caster immediately suffer a number of wounds equal to twice the amount of Force points they rolled.

121-130 - Reality cracks:
The power fails to work, and the caster and every character within Short range of the caster immediately suffer 1d6+3 insanity points (roll separately for every character). Minion-level NPCs are assumed to die or otherwise become incapacitated as a result.

131-140 - Change storm: The power fails to work, and the caster and every character within Short range of the caster must immediately make an unmodified roll on the Gifts from the Gods table. Minion-level NPCs are assumed to die or otherwise become incapacitated as a result.

141-150 - Brainflayer: The power fails to work, and the caster must reduce their Willpower characteristic by one. The caster gains 2d6 insanity points.

151-160 - Unlimited power: The psychic power works, and the caster counts as having unlocked every upgrade of the power's respective upgrade tree. They double the amount of Force points they rolled. The caster suffers wounds and strain equal to three times the amount of Force points they rolled. They gain 2d6+3 insanity points.

161-170 - Reality tears: The psyker's head explodes in a shower of gore and denizens of the warp start pouring out of the warp rift their mind became. The power fails to work. The psyker dies. The warp rift keeps spewing out minor daemons until it disappears in 1d6 hours.


So, what do you think? Too unforgiving, too tame?
 

HorribleHedgehog

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Haven't managed to get any rules written, but I did start on a portrait of an Inciter. It was a struggle and I'm not sure if the social manipulation aspect is visible enough in the picture. I could use criticism - do they look the part? Anything I could do to make the master manipulator angle more apparent?

l7mbsJK.jpg
 
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Punktaku

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the style is cool, but they need to be more... dynamic? maybe pointing and yelling? like they’re directing a crowd. “they’re over this way! get them! rip them apart! Send them back to Mother in a cardboard box! You’d better run!!!”
 
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HorribleHedgehog

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the style is cool, but they need to be more... dynamic? maybe pointing and yelling? like they’re directing a crowd. “they’re over this way! get them! rip them apart! Send them back to Mother in a cardboard box! You’d better run!!!”
But that's the Demagogue's shtick now, ain't it? ;)

Inciter's meant to be more of a manipulator on a personal scale.
 

Punktaku

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ah, yes. my mistake! how about (and keeping in mind my drawing skill is practically 0) loosing the whip and having them be behind a generic fighter and whispering in their ear? or something suggesting they’re more spider-like and manipulating a bunch of individuals?

if you’re staying with a single subject portrait-like image, i’d suggest hanging the whip off the belt (but keeping it obvious) and maybe having them wringing their hands like they’re plotting something.

a delaque-type pose would also be very appropriate
 
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HorribleHedgehog

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I did consider having a servant glued to their side, but decided to keep it to a single subject as I want the picture to match the other class pieces. Putting the whip on the belt is a good idea - it's probably mostly for show, anyway. The pose will likely stay close to what it is now - purely out of laziness - but maybe I'll try some Delaque-style robe/coat thing.