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TheSaylesMan
2007-11-18, 02:14 AM
Hey all.

I know this is quite a bit unusual for these forums, as D&D is pretty much the subject of choice, but WHFRP has recently caught my eye. I was wondering if anyone has any experience with this system. I've gotten myself all the books I've had available to me. The Core Book, Bestiary, Armory, and Companion, as well as the Tome of Corruption and the source books for The Empire, Brettonia, The Border Princes, and Skaven. As you can see, I've invested a bit of money into this already even though I got most of these books second-hand.

I'm going to be GM for a group I've set up, but seeing as this will be my first time I don't have any experience.

I already have a plot, but I've got no idea on how to set up a good enemy encounter that's neither to easy nor difficult for my players. Seeing as I have the Tome of Corruption, I'm going to be using mutants as my standard enemies. I'm looking to set up one ambush n four players and I'd like to know a good number of muties to use.

Also, I'm having a bit of trouble in making a challenging villain to fight without turning him into a bloated abomination with mutations. I was thinking of using a Chaos Weapon, but I don't know if that would be overpowering/unrealistic.

To get a good feel for this guy, he's a Nurgle cultist who's set up a "bakery" in the middle of the woods. He's stumbled across a very short mutant who could pass as a Halfling with heavy enough clothing. Knowing that peasants are generally in a state of near starvation, they'll be trusting enough to eat something they think a Halfling has baked. The thing is, these pies have a nasty surprise in them, and the whole town is getting horribly sick.

I've got 4 PC's who have to figure out the origin of this plague, and then eliminate the source of it. I'd appreciate any help on the builds/numbers of enemies.

Matthew
2007-11-18, 02:17 AM
I played *a lot* of First Edition. I went the Hero Quest, Advanced Hero Quest, War Hammer Fantasy Roleplay Route. I take it you're playing Second Edition?

Raum
2007-11-18, 02:51 AM
I know this is quite a bit unusual for these forums, as D&D is pretty much the subject of choice, but WHFRP has recently caught my eye. I was wondering if anyone has any experience with this system. I've gotten myself all the books I've had available to me. The Core Book, Bestiary, Armory, and Companion, as well as the Tome of Corruption and the source books for The Empire, Brettonia, The Border Princes, and Skaven. As you can see, I've invested a bit of money into this already even though I got most of these books second-hand.WFRP can be a lot of fun. Don't expect it to be 'pretty' though...it's more about down on their luck ratcatchers fighting simply to survive in the muck than it is about shiny paladins fighting the good fight. The Old World is more black and gray than it is black and white. That's part of it's charm! :smallamused:


I'm going to be GM for a group I've set up, but seeing as this will be my first time I don't have any experience.

I already have a plot, but I've got no idea on how to set up a good enemy encounter that's neither to easy nor difficult for my players. Seeing as I have the Tome of Corruption, I'm going to be using mutants as my standard enemies. I'm looking to set up one ambush n four players and I'd like to know a good number of muties to use.

Also, I'm having a bit of trouble in making a challenging villain to fight without turning him into a bloated abomination with mutations. I was thinking of using a Chaos Weapon, but I don't know if that would be overpowering/unrealistic.Start with a few small fights and work your way up. Remember, combat is harsher than games like D&D...though Fate Points will help your characters survive.

Matthew
2007-11-18, 02:54 AM
Yeah, good advice there, Raum. In fact, Cultists should probably be the prime adversaries at the beginning. A charismatic Cult Leader could play the role of initial major villain.

Let's see if I can work up some Cultists:


Cultist
{table=head]M|WS|BS|S|T|W|I|A|Dex|Ld|Int|Cl|Wp|Fel

4|
33|
29|
3|
3|5|
29|
1|
29|
29|
29|
29|
29|
29
[/table]

Equipment: Dagger, Sword or other Hand Weapon.

Prustan
2007-11-18, 04:50 AM
Haven't really had too much experience with WHFRP - not really too fond of the 1st Edition system and haven't had anyone to play with anyway. However, the right GM can make all the difference...
As you're new, start small, and work your way up. Also, be prepared to have some PCs fall in battle, as WH is more gritty than DnD - a few decent hits can kill just about anyone.

Tengu
2007-11-18, 05:53 AM
I played a lot of the first edition - in the eighties and nineties, it was the most popular RPG system in Poland, and considered default - just like DND is considered a default system pretty much everywhere now. Needless to say, this resulted in sessions being on average much less grim and gritty than what people were running in the west - it's more along the "dirty heroes" type rather than "struggle to survive in a world that's one huge boil". An extreme popularity of the Witcher saga, which could be described as Song of Fire and Ice with more humour and less characters, helped that.

Anyway, I found the system extremely easy to learn, and very easy to create antagonists on the spot, but that's much everything good about it. A few lucky rolls will make you invulnerable (4 or more Toughness + shield + some armor = most enemies won't put a dent in you, Dodge + high, elven Initiative = you're extremely hard to hit), which does not really help the gritty feeling at all, and with unlucky rolls you will suck completely - I've seen people roll so badly they had to reroll because they couldn't pick any career with the stats they got. Magic is not very well-made: if you're a caster you have to spend EXTREME amounts of experience and money into learning new spells (while non-casters buy their "can't touch me" pieces of armor and skyrocket their stats), and two spells of the same level can vary in power between "laughably useless" and "omg borken nerf1!!11one!1". And were the prices most of most reagents mentioned anywhere anyway?

But I remember it fondly, even if it's far from the best system under the sun. For an eighties game it was decently designed anyway. And I've heard that second edition fixes a lot of issues.


Equipment: Dagger, Sword or other Hand Weapon.

Don't daggers have different stats than hand weapons?

CatCameBack
2007-11-18, 07:10 AM
I played quite a bit of 1st ed. WHFRP back in the day, and yeah...Tengu is mostly right about the system.

The new version is a bit more streamlined. Professions aren't randomly rolled and stats don't vary quite as much, but some things haven't changed.

A local group, mostly made up of some WH tabletop players (there were two of us who had extensive RPG experience the rest were just GW/Warhammer fans for the most part), played some about 6 months ago. The dwarven juggernaut showed up again. Molstly due to some gear acquisition. I ran the original starter mission in the 1st ed. book and converted the bad guys. The dwarf chugged into what was supposed to ba a deadly crossbow ambush and took 3 in the forehead...he then proceeded to clear the room out. Stacking armor and toughness is still pretty problematic. To be sure, nobody was really trying to "munchkin" the game...it just happened.

Another thing is that magic is governed by a "miscast" system rather than a Vancian spellslot system or a mana point system. This is well in keeping with the background, and folds neatly into the wargaming system. However, the flipside (due to the way the bell curve and multiple dice throws work) is that high level mages stand a decent chance of blowing themselves up each time they cast a powerful spell, while apprentices can plug away with cantrips with impunity (since the worst that can happen is a temporary loss of spellcasting ability). I guess this is just a different way of conceiving of Magic and Spellcasters and keeps high-powered casting from being trivialized. It fits into the "grim and dangerous" world view of the game quite well. I'm merely warning you, as someone who has probably gotten used to the mechanistic and reliable nature of D&D magic, to beware fo the differences.

All in all, it is as good as most fantasy systems out there. I will say that unless your group has a lot of GW fans, they will probably not like the feel of the system, since the game is inexctricably bound up in the theme of its default world.

Kizara
2007-11-18, 07:20 AM
I played quite a bit of 1st ed. WHFRP back in the day, and yeah...Tengu is mostly right about the system.

The new version is a bit more streamlined. Professions aren't randomly rolled and stats don't vary quite as much, but some things haven't changed.

A local group, mostly made up of some WH tabletop players (there were two of us who had extensive RPG experience the rest were just GW/Warhammer fans for the most part), played some about 6 months ago. The dwarven juggernaut showed up again. Molstly due to some gear acquisition. I ran the original starter mission in the 1st ed. book and converted the bad guys. The dwarf chugged into what was supposed to ba a deadly crossbow ambush and took 3 in the forehead...he then proceeded to clear the room out. Stacking armor and toughness is still pretty problematic. To be sure, nobody was really trying to "munchkin" the game...it just happened.

Another thing is that magic is governed by a "miscast" system rather than a Vancian spellslot system or a mana point system. This is well in keeping with the background, and folds neatly into the wargaming system. However, the flipside (due to the way the bell curve and multiple dice throws work) is that high level mages stand a decent chance of blowing themselves up each time they cast a powerful spell, while apprentices can plug away with cantrips with impunity (since the worst that can happen is a temporary loss of spellcasting ability). I guess this is just a different way of conceiving of Magic and Spellcasters and keeps high-powered casting from being trivialized. It fits into the "grim and dangerous" world view of the game quite well. I'm merely warning you, as someone who has probably gotten used to the mechanistic and reliable nature of D&D magic, to beware fo the differences.

All in all, it is as good as most fantasy systems out there. I will say that unless your group has a lot of GW fans, they will probably not like the feel of the system, since the game is inexctricably bound up in the theme of its default world.

GW= Guild War I'm assuming?

Guild War is based in the Warhammer universe? I didn't know that.

You have any experience with the 40k RP game? I enjoy the flavor/fluff and general contest of warhammer, but can't be bothered to buy minatures and trying to replicate Space Marines, a huge assortment of weapons, advanced vechiles and Eldar in 3.5 DnD is combersome at best.

Neon Knight
2007-11-18, 07:25 AM
GW= Guild War I'm assuming?

Guild War is based in the Warhammer universe? I didn't know that.

You have any experience with the 40k RP game? I enjoy the flavor/fluff and general contest of warhammer, but can't be bothered to buy minatures and trying to replicate Space Marines, a huge assortment of weapons, advanced vechiles and Eldar in 3.5 DnD is combersome at best.

GW = Games Workshop, the company the produces Warhammer and Warhammer 40k. They have a large line of products beyond these two universes, and fans who swear by any product made by them.

Guild Wars has nothing to do with Warhammer in the slightest.

GolemsVoice
2007-11-18, 07:29 AM
GW = Games Workshop. The company that owns all the Warhammer and Warhammer 40000 stuff.

Kizara
2007-11-18, 07:49 AM
GW = Games Workshop, the company the produces Warhammer and Warhammer 40k. They have a large line of products beyond these two universes, and fans who swear by any product made by them.

Guild Wars has nothing to do with Warhammer in the slightest.

Ya, k, I feel stupid/horribly uninformed now. That's what I get for failing my Fort save vs fatigue.

Anyways, my second question concerning WH 40k RPGs stands, if anyone has any information.

Unregistered
2007-11-18, 07:52 AM
The Warhammer world is my favourite fantasy setting, I like the story about Chaos very much and those names given to the NPCs are just hilarious for everyone who speaks German. I only played the old version and I have to admit that the system was not too good, for the reasons Tengu mentioned. But I liked the Magic point system. I feel that the new edition gets more generic what I don't like but it's still recognizable Warhammer.

BTW: I think (thought it's been a long time since I played) that your cultists, if they are the main enemies and come in larger numbers will almost be too hard for a complete new group. Maybe give them WS 25.

Morty
2007-11-18, 08:00 AM
I love how magic is done in WFRPG 2ed. It manages to be unpredictable and dangerous while still being powerful, which is surely better than D&D's overpowered yet annoyingly common magic. Magic system in 1st edition looks quite bland and generic to me.
The system itself encourages low-magic, gritty style of playing, which is a nice break after D&D. The two things I don't like about Warhammer are rolling for careers and too much ties with the setting I don't really like- heavy stylization isn't really my thing.

Matthew
2007-11-18, 08:19 AM
Anyway, I found the system extremely easy to learn, and very easy to create antagonists on the spot, but that's much everything good about it. A few lucky rolls will make you invulnerable (4 or more Toughness + shield + some armor = most enemies won't put a dent in you, Dodge + high, elven Initiative = you're extremely hard to hit), which does not really help the gritty feeling at all,

Heh, heh. Yeah, I have seen that happen. I fact, here's a character that went through the whole of the Enemy Within Campaign, amongst other things:


Class: Warrior: Witch / Demon Hunter

Career Path: ex-Templar, ex-Freelance, ex-Noble, ex-Mercenary Captain, ex-Mercenary Sergeant, ex-Mercenary

Experience: 6,000 (0)

Fate Points:

Honour:

Insanity Points: Six (at least)

{table=head]Profile: | Start | Change | End
Movement | 05 | +00 | 05
Weapon Skill | 35 | +00 | 65
Ballistic Skill | 31 | +00 | 61
Strength | 05* | +00 | 08
Toughness | 04 | +00 | 06
Wounds | 07 |+008 | 15
Initiative | 44* | +00 | 74
Attacks | 01 | +00 | 03
Dexterity | 28 | +00 | 48
Leadership | 33 | +004 | 73
Intelligence | 27 | +00 | 47
Cool | 38 | +00 | 68
Willpower | 32 | +00 | 52
Fellowship | 36 | +00 | 56
[/table]

Skills:

Very Strong*
Lightning Reflexes*
Animal Care
Charm
Consume Alcohol
Disarm
Dodge Blow
Etiquette
Gamble
Heraldry
Public Speaking
Read / Write
Ride ~ Horse
Secret Language ~ Battle
Specialist Weapon ~ Flail
Specialist Weapon ~ Lance
Specialist Weapon ~ Parrying Weapons
Specialist Weapon ~ Two Handed Weapons
Street Fighter
Strike Mighty Blow
Strike to Injure
Strike to Stun

Possessions:

Padded Hauberk, Padded Coif, Padded Sleeves, Padded Leggings,
Mail Hauberk, Mail Coif, Mail Sleeves, Mail Leggings,
Plate Cuirass, Full Helmet, Plate Bracers, Plate Greaves,
Dagger, Enchanted Long Sword ~ Spirit Blade, Shield,

Bow Case ~ Bow
Quiver ~ Twenty Four Arrows

Riding Horse
War Horse
Lance

He was pretty amazing, but then he was the Barbarian Character converted over from Hero Quest :smallbiggrin:




Don't daggers have different stats than hand weapons?

Indeed, I meant it to be read as [Dagger], [Sword or other Hand Weapon],

Wraith
2007-11-18, 08:26 AM
I am quite familiar with the WHFRP background and mechanics, and by the sound of it I would agree that TheSaylesman has quite a nice idea of what constitutes a good encounter.

I would highly recommend, if you're planning a long-term campaign, that you pick up the Old World Bestiary. Not just because it gives you stats and abilities for dozens of different creatures, but also because the Bestiary gives each monster/enemy a "Slaughter Margin" which is roughly equivalent to a CR in D&D. Very helpful, for deciding what is "tough" and what is "too tough".

Not that such trivialities ever matter to my WFRP DM, of course - to this day, I still don't think that 8 Skaven Clanrats and a Grey Seer are an appropriate encounter for starting characters... :smallyuk:

Anyhoo... while I can't remember off the top of my head, Cultists such as the one described by Matthew have a Slaughter Margin (compared to starting out characters) of something like "Reasonably simple" - a group of 4 starting out characters, so long as their stats are fairly reasonable, should be able to fight and kill 4 Cultists in about 3-5 rounds and be in fairly good condition afterwards, Wrath of the Dice not withstanding. Hopefully that will give you some idea of how many you need to make things interesting or dangerous.

As for BBEGs in WFRP, there are a lot of ways to go about it and it's quite easy to overpower things - particularly Chaos minions. Unless your Characters are going to be quite well developed by the time they meet your 'Baker', I would advise against giving him the ability to cast spells, and certainly don't give him Chaos magic if you do. That stuff REALLY stings, and getting a 'free' dice to cast with tips the balance quite a bit.

Instead, I would recommend the Players meet Beastmen while the Agent makes his getaway - they fit the 'Deep Forest' theme, they are sensible to use as minions for a Chaos agent and are generally quite a bit tougher than Cultists. Add equipment and a few bits of armour, maybe even a 'Champion' of some kind, and suddenly there's definite increase in Party concerns.

And later on, when the Players have just picked up a second career, would be a better time to throw a Chaos Mage at them. Just for fun :smallbiggrin:

CatCameBack
2007-11-18, 08:31 AM
Ya, k, I feel stupid/horribly uninformed now. That's what I get for failing my Fort save vs fatigue.

Anyways, my second question concerning WH 40k RPGs stands, if anyone has any information.

Don't feel bad. I'm used to posting on WH40k forums, where GW is treated like a living breathing thing that has to be fed, paid attention to, occasionally fended off like a wild animal.

EDIT: P.S. The best way to make BBEGs tough is to give them Fate points, just like characters. This may be 'dirty pool', but you will thank me when the Chaos Sorcerer of Doom kicks off round one of combat by triple miscasting his biggest spell....

Raum
2007-11-18, 09:07 AM
Another thing is that magic is governed by a "miscast" system rather than a Vancian spellslot system or a mana point system. This is well in keeping with the background, and folds neatly into the wargaming system. However, the flipside (due to the way the bell curve and multiple dice throws work) is that high level mages stand a decent chance of blowing themselves up each time they cast a powerful spell, while apprentices can plug away with cantrips with impunity (since the worst that can happen is a temporary loss of spellcasting ability). I guess this is just a different way of conceiving of Magic and Spellcasters and keeps high-powered casting from being trivialized. It fits into the "grim and dangerous" world view of the game quite well. I'm merely warning you, as someone who has probably gotten used to the mechanistic and reliable nature of D&D magic, to beware fo the differences.One comment on the magic system - the "high level mage" can still cast cantrips all day long, he doesn't have to use more than one die. It's when he starts putting more power into the spell (i.e. more dice) that the possibility of unpredictable effects increase.

Lord Rocket
2007-11-18, 12:28 PM
WFRP was the first proper (ie. not Hero Quest) RPG I ever played, so I have an abiding affection for it. A couple of things:

Tengu pointed out the 'naked dwarf' syndrome (ie. high Toughness characters without armour were better at absorbing damage than armoured low-Toughness characters) that plagued first edition. Well, armour is now significantly meatier, and damage has likewise been upped, so this is less of a problem now.
The new magic system is groovy (as the aforementioned pointed out, the old one was notably horrible). It just feels right to me; its pleasantly chunky and the spam limiting mechanism is player-based (nasty consequences) as opposed to system based (Vancian spell slots or a mana system). I wish they'd expand the spell list, though.
God, the critical hit system in this game is a thing of beauty.
The random career generation in the new edition is lame.

On that note:
If you can grab some of the first edition sourcebooks, do it. They have lots of interesting fluff that have given me lots of ideas, and I reintroduced the character class mechanic into my game to give the players a little more leeway in customising their characters. The 2nd edition crunch really is a lot better, however.

Anyway, to address the OP's original question...
Suitable encounters? Pah! WFRP is one of those games where combat isn't really that viable, as your PCs will find out when their characters lose an eye within the first hour of playtime. Don't be afraid to dump a couple of daemons in front of them, so long as they have other options (if they spend any length of time underground, a dwarf who knows about mine engineering and gunpowder will be invaluable). If anything, the early game is a better place for these sorts of encounters, while the players still have fate points left.
Victory in the WH world is, after all, supposed to be hard won and fleeting.
Hack 'n' slash still has a place, though; it's great fun wading through a horde of demoralised enemies who aren't fighting back.

My advice? Keep the cult low powered (the cultists are just as fragmented and isolated as anyone else), and reserve any good mutations for the leader.
The boss really shouldn't be some sort of high priest though, so don't try and make him 'challenging.' Decent stats and some warrior skills, like Dodge etc., will make him formidable enough for a group just starting out, assuming he's surrounded by his mates. Definitelty avoid giving him magical weapons (especially chaos stuff - chances are, if the players are as inexperienced as you, they'll try to use it and then complain when they grow eye stalks). A couple of curable diseases he can pass on should be enough - especially if they panic when they find out they've caught something.
If you make sure your characters get a taste of their own blood before they meet him (just try not to blind them, OK?), they'll have a good idea of how lethal the game can be and so will - hopefully - appreciate even such a minor victory.

Oh, by the way, I like your plot idea. Do tell us how things turn out, won't you?

Ferreon
2007-11-18, 06:33 PM
Ahh, WFRP. where, yet again I am the only caster (this time, because I'm the only one who doesn't give a screwballs about my spells exploding in my face)

And also, incidentally, a wizard is a fair melee fighter, provided you aren't facing more than one foe at a time, and no more than three in a row without help (thank the gods for the defending property of staffs)

TheSaylesMan
2007-11-18, 07:29 PM
Thanks for all the help everyone. All of this discussion has helped me decide on my campaign. A 5 cultist ambush outside of Wormwood Bakery, one of which will have two rolls on the Nurgle Mutation chart (Bizarre Coloration and Extra Ear are what I rolled).

When the PC's barge in, there will be a smattering of cultists, mutants, and than a fairly powerful Beastigor to cover the escape of the "Baker". The Beastigor will have the Trails of Slime and Teleport mutations. If that guy gets taken out too quickly, or the PC's pull some other trick to corner/bind/catch up to the Baker, he'll have the Cult Acolyte of Nurgle career.

On the subject of magic, do I have anything to worry about if one of my PCs rolls up an Apprentice or Hedge Wizard? Should I prepare some anti-magic tricks, just in case?

EDIT: Oh yes, I forgot. As for loot, I was thinking that my PCs could find all the proceeds from the pie sales as well as a legitimate Halfling Cookbook in the building that they could sell off or attempt to return to the Moot. Plus it can be used as a plot hook for further sessions. Does that sound good?

CatCameBack
2007-11-19, 05:53 AM
On the subject of magic, do I have anything to worry about if one of my PCs rolls up an Apprentice or Hedge Wizard? Should I prepare some anti-magic tricks, just in case?

Nah. Apprentice wizards are their own worst enemy. The player may make a nuisance of himself by repeatedly spamcasting the arcane arrow spell (arcane dart? I don't have the book with me. w/e it is called...). He'll eventually roll that '1'.




EDIT: Oh yes, I forgot. As for loot, I was thinking that my PCs could find all the proceeds from the pie sales as well as a legitimate Halfling Cookbook in the building that they could sell off or attempt to return to the Moot. Plus it can be used as a plot hook for further sessions. Does that sound good?

Everything except going to the Moot. If I were playing, I would feel an overwhelming urge to burn them out. Die, cute Halflings, Die.

Stephen_E
2007-11-19, 06:33 AM
I've played both 1st and 2nd Ed. Our 1st Ed DM did get a bit miffed when we acquired a barge and became more intrested in trading (plus looting bad guys to build our trade stock) than following the plot. Arrive at new town, sell cargo, find new cargo, track down clues about bad guys and the main plot in our spare time. Also racked up our most famous loot of BBEGs lair. Went back to town and got some wagons and cleaned out the furniture, linens and removed any unbroken glass windows to sell. The next time we tokk a BBEGs castle lair, valuing it as we fought our way through it, he used some crazy Skaven with explosives to drop it into the river before we could really get looting. An entire room of clocks, an observatory, glasshouses!! I could've killed the cheating GM!

Anyway - Aprentice Wizards - Need fate/fortune points and a good Will. When they roll 1 on their single magic dice they have to make a will roll to avoid getting an indanity point. Once they're Journyman Wizards they need to sabe their fortune points for when they roll a double. Then they roll on a Tzeench's curse table. IIRC 1-85 is fine, but 86+ goes to the next chart up. If that happens you use your fortune point to reroll. If you're ever forced to roll on the 4-of-a-kind table you're probably going back to character gen. Ingrediants are a Wizards best friend.

High inititive isn't quite as awesome as it used to be. Read the combat section several times. Dodging has limits, as does parrying. Remember that missile attack are line of sight and can't fire past stuff. i.e. If your friend is on a straight line between you and your intended target you can't shoot. This includes magic missiles.

Insanity. I suggest you tone down insanities. Basically as RAW your 1st insanity has about a 50% chance of ending your PC. The 2nd insanity pretty much guarantees it.

Stephen

Attilargh
2007-11-19, 07:01 AM
Everything except going to the Moot. If I were playing, I would feel an overwhelming urge to burn them out. Die, cute Halflings, Die.
If I remember my cartography right, Sylvania's right next door to the Moot. Just sayin'. :smallwink:

raygungothic
2007-11-19, 07:08 AM
Stephen_E: If the castle that the Skaven dropped into the river was the one I think it was, your GM was actually just following the script that time.

TheSaylesMan: Sounds like you have a decent plan there. WFRP is pretty deadly, so don't plan on as many fighting encounters as you get in D&D, concentrate on atmosphere instead. I would worry about putting a chaos weapon in an early adventure - how will a novice party safely dispose of it? (That could be your second adventure, of course...)

Stephen_E
2007-11-19, 10:20 AM
Stephen_E: If the castle that the Skaven dropped into the river was the one I think it was, your GM was actually just following the script that time.


You might be right. It was the castle above a village with a crazy docter giving odd "remedies" to the villagers.
We did run into the skaven underground and their priest was about to throw a globe of something at us when I threw a spear I'd just picked up at him. Rolled up, head location, instant dead priest who dropped poison globe on his own troops killing them all. I fugered that would've held off any skaven destruction long enough to fill our barge with clocks and the observatory telescope.

That was where my Wizard picked up a rep for coldblooded evil after interogating some people Jack Baur style, but nastier, and promising to let one prisoner go if he talked. I let him go but forgot we'd left some mooks at the gate with orders to shoot anyone who approached other than us. No one beleived I'd simply forgotten when we came apon his porcupined corpse.

Stephen

Darrin
2007-11-19, 12:08 PM
You might be right. It was the castle above a village with a crazy docter giving odd "remedies" to the villagers.


Not only was he following the script, but you have been honorably distinguished with one of the most memorable events in 1st Ed. WFRP.

There are many former barge-traders who suffered greatly as the result of the capricious whimsy of James Wallis. Jonny Nexus puts it best:

http://www.criticalmiss.com/issue8/jameswallisruined1.html

In fact, I think it's been elevated into a religious experience if you're a practicing member of the First Church of James Wallis Sanctified:

http://www.criticalmiss.com/issue10/FaithIntroduction1.html

Telok
2007-11-19, 03:37 PM
I can give you a bit of advice based on some old experiences of mine.

1) Try to keep your players at about 2 Fate after the first couple of sessions. Once they're down to those last two points start being just generous enough to keep people at a 2 to 3 point level. Having three people go down in the first round of a big combat because "Why do you think I've been hanging in the back? I ran out of Fate points four sessions ago." just sucks.

2) Be aware of what the players are playing and why. Be aware of why the players go for certain professions. Twice I had to go for the archery and marksman classes because I'd rolled too low on WS and strength to survive melee combat. Of course that really sucked when we were faced with things that were immune to arrows.

3) Know your statistics. Before you inflict some lethal curse on your players and set the fix as a magic ritual that takes at least one successful roll out of three on a 30% stat, check your numbers. Three checks for 30% is not a 90% survival rate, it's a 65% survival rate. And make sure they have at least one Fate point left before they get to the ritual.

Stephen_E
2007-11-19, 05:23 PM
Not only was he following the script, but you have been honorably distinguished with one of the most memorable events in 1st Ed. WFRP.

There are many former barge-traders who suffered greatly as the result of the capricious whimsy of James Wallis. Jonny Nexus puts it best:

http://www.criticalmiss.com/issue8/jameswallisruined1.html

In fact, I think it's been elevated into a religious experience if you're a practicing member of the First Church of James Wallis Sanctified:

http://www.criticalmiss.com/issue10/FaithIntroduction1.html

They let their boat get torched!

Idiots. Did they think life was fair and kind or something? We always had a guard on our treasure. I remember the attempt to burn the boat. We killed most of them stone dead, except for the one we kept for "questioning".

We also never had problems with running into cultists who'd learnt dangerous stuff from the books we sold. 1st the Cleric and I kept most of the books for our own use (bibliophiles in real life tend to that way in RPGing) and 2nd any Chaos stuff we sold we then tracked and killed the people we sold it to. Those works were evil, and anyone buying them clearly deserved to die. Our Priest of Sigmund OKed it.

I wonder if James Wallis was also responsible for the Middeheim wizard escaping from us who threw our money (as good guys any property of the bad guys that was portable was actually our equipment temporaily out of our possession) into the crowd to delay our pursuit. My PC would happily have flayed him alive if we'd got hold of him. He went on our book of grudges just under the female wizard follower of Tzeench.

It did help keep me safe from been corrupted by Tzeench.
My Wizard would never follow Tzeench because to many of his followers pissed us off and escaped alive.
Nurgel was just icky,
Slaneesh was silly,
and while Korn had a great attitude toward butchering, blood and violence, he hated Wizards and would never take me unless I gave up magic, and magic was oodles of fun making things burn and blowup, when it wasn't massively boosting my ability to crush and dismember creatures with my magical Flail (Korn villians also never ran away. You got to kill them and take everything they had, so he provided a better class of villian which is something else to be grateful for. We even got a Kornish magical artifact that attracted Korn followers to us to kill).

One of my fondest memories of that long campaign was when most of the party got into a 3-way fight in the hull of a grounded barge with some Slannish followers and demonettes, and a Bloodletter, a couple of Champions of Korn and some Korn mooks who'd punched a hole in the side of the barge to attack. My Wizard pumped himself with spells and jumped of the side of the barge behind the Korn group cackling "mine, all mine" killing one untouched Champion and the Bloodletter (Demon) who was down to half wounds. This was despite previously having lost 2 fate points to going hand-to-hand with Korn champions with those cursed swords that instantly kill spellcasters on doing any wounds.

IIRC that was about when even the Troll Slayer decided my Wizard was completely crazy.

Stephen

Swooper
2007-11-20, 05:06 AM
Reading this discussion during the past few days got me to want to try WHFRP (I played WHFB years ago, so I'm familiar with the world). So, I did the most obvious thing and *hrm*aquired*hrm* the core book. I've been reading through it, and am confused by one thing.

Let's say my starting Career is Agitator. The Agitator has an advancement scheme of WS +5%, BS +5%, Ag +5%, Int +10%, Fel +10% and W +2. The way I understand it, I have to 'finish' these advancements by spending XP on them untill I have them all. So, now I can pay XP to change into a new career (or can I do this before I finish Agitator?), let's say I choose Herald. The Herald has an advancement scheme of WS +10%, BS +10%, S +5%, T +5%, Ag +15%, Int +15%, WP +10%, Fel +20% and W +4. Do these stack with the advancements I already have? Say, if my Ag started at 34, I raised it by 5 to 39 via Agitator. Do I get to/need to raise it to 49 or 54 via Herald?

Matthew
2007-11-20, 05:10 AM
I haven't seen the new core books, but it's almost certainly overlap. In 1st Edition an advancement from +10% to a +20% career was a sum total of +20%.

Swooper
2007-11-20, 05:54 AM
I thought as much, thanks Matthew. Would kind of ruin the realism if you could reach inhuman stats by cycling low-level professions like Servant, Peasant and Rat Catcher :smalltongue:

Wraith
2007-11-20, 06:29 AM
Let's say my starting Career is Agitator. The Agitator has an advancement scheme of WS +5%, BS +5%, Ag +5%, Int +10%, Fel +10% and W +2. The way I understand it, I have to 'finish' these advancements by spending XP on them untill I have them all.
<snip>

Just in case you need a modern answer from the most recent books, check the top-right corner of page 28 in the Main Rule Book. :smallsmile:


"If you finished a career entry with a Fellowship of +20% and entered one with +30%, for instance, you would retain the four advances you'd already bought... and would need to pay for two more advances (200xp) to raise your Fellowship from +20% to +30%."

So, just in case you come across someone in your group that insists his Peasant/RatCatcher/Servant/Grave Robber has +20% to his WS, you can now point and laugh at him because he really only has +5%. :smallbiggrin:

Matthew
2007-11-20, 06:51 AM
Heh, thanks for confirming that. It's good that they're using smaller increments for this new edition.

raygungothic
2007-11-20, 09:39 AM
You might be right. It was the castle above a village with a crazy docter giving odd "remedies" to the villagers.

Yup, that's the one.

I'd reminisce more, but I fear I've already gone a bit too close to spoiler-land.

I never needed to take my party's barge away from them, though they did abandon it and steal another when they realised too many people recognised the first one. Sadly, the campaign ended before the law caught up with them and hanged them for Grand Theft Watercraft.

It sounds like your party's image of itself as "the good guys" might not have been quite justified...

---

"sure. I sign my name Kastor Lieberung." :biggrin:

Swooper
2007-11-20, 10:36 AM
I've got another question. What would be the in-game effects of removing the Trappings requirements from changing Careers? Some of them feel reduntant, like requiring Champions to own at least six weapons ("No, sorry, you've only got five") or Judicial Champions to own a piece of rope (:smallconfused:). Sure, some make sense, like requiring wizards to own spellbooks...But lots of them don't.

Sleet
2007-11-20, 10:42 AM
I've got another question. What would be the in-game effects of removing the Trappings requirements from changing Careers?

In my experience, any impact of that would be minor. Our group used the trappings requirements as guidelines: "Get some stuff kind of like this." Worked fine.

Matthew
2007-11-20, 11:32 AM
I don't think we ever paid any attention to trappings beyond being a guideline for NPCs and PC starting equipment. Does it explicitly say that you 'must' have that equipment now? I wouldn't worry about it. Chances are it's just there to prevent people taking the Merchant Career and then never buying, selling or trading anything. Of course, if the Game Master has players who behave like that, forcing them to carry x, y and z around isn't going to do much to prevent it.

Swooper
2007-11-20, 12:15 PM
Thought it wouldn't matter much, thanks.

Pauwel
2007-11-20, 12:17 PM
I don't think we ever paid any attention to trappings beyond being a guideline for NPCs and PC starting equipment. Does it explicitly say that you 'must' have that equipment now? I wouldn't worry about it. Chances are it's just there to prevent people taking the Merchant Career and then never buying, selling or trading anything. Of course, if the Game Master has players who behave like that, forcing them to carry x, y and z around isn't going to do much to prevent it.

Well, you're supposed to start with whatever's written in the Trappings section of your starting career, but you're free to do whatever you want with it.

The Trappings requirement only come into play when you're changing careers. If you're playing a Noble and you wish to get into the Noble Lord career, you must have what it says in Noble Lord's Trappings section besides having completed the Noble career.
A bit silly, but not quite as silly.

Wraith
2007-11-20, 06:14 PM
I personally found the Required Trappings rule to be somewhat ineffective, as it was so very easy to abuse to the point that it would become a joke.

For example, to become a Crime Lord you need a "Criminal Organisation". What the heck is that supposed to be? You could arrange for one of your fellow PC's to randomly punch some Peasant in the face; it's a crime that you organised, welcome to your new Career!
Similarly, a Champion needs 6 Best Craftsmanship weapons but there is no restriction to what they can buy - 6 Best Craftsmanship Daggers costs a pittance compared to buying something useful likes swords and axes, but apparently that's all you need. Compared to advancing as a Wizard, who needs to buy a Grimoire, the single most expensive mundane item in the game - 12 times - in order to progress to a higher Career, it's unbalanced to say the least (especially seeing as they can only actually use 1 of the Grimoires ever).

Then we get into the concept of meta-owning equipment in order to progress. To become a Flagellant, you need either a Flail or a Great Weapon as part of your Trappings. Borrow one off a friend, get your new Career, and you can give it back or even sell it without any kind of rebuttal, according to the rules.

While I see the point of enforcing Trappings, I strongly suggest that you make a decision early on - either to do away with them altogether, or to strictly enforce ALL of them and MAKE your Players keep them at a certain level fo quality for a period of time, if not actually use them.
Otherwise, it's going to be either far too easy for someone to advance in a Career that should require planning and forethought to do so, or others are going to be severely limited compared to others and you'll end up with lots of Veterans and Sergeants, but no Witch Hunters, Nobles or Mages.

While that might work if you theme your game around an army or Mercenary company, it soon gets quite dull if you want to do something other than front-line melee combat.

raygungothic
2007-11-21, 05:18 AM
Commonsense is a required trapping for the "WFRP GM" career. If Wraith's GM lets him get away with the tricks described, I think he might have missed the point of the required trappings principle.

I don't know the current edition very well, but the old one did need Required Trappings in order to vaguely make sense. Removing them encourages players to treat career changes casually and mechanically, like prestige class dips; half the point of the career system is that it's part of your character's life, they have to have a day job and are influenced by it! The fact that the equipment entry requirements are sometimes wildly unequal is quite on purpose - most of the most advanced careers are quite costly to reach - I'm not sure it's strictly *balanced* but it's a sensible idea in principle. There is room for a bit of leeway, and I don't think any reasonable GM is going to prevent someone becoming a Merchant because they've only accumulated trade goods to the value of 1,990 crowns rather than 2,000 (or whatever the figure is), but token adherence (like six-dagger guy) ought probably be disallowed.

Swooper - I think your best move would be to loosen them to common-sense guidelines, and maybe ease a few of the more unreasonably expensive ones (if there still are any). If someone has five decent weapons it's probably OK to let them become a Champion, but the guy with just a club should have to invest something to qualify. The chap who wants to be a Highwayman should be able to dress the part and have a horse and pistol. And you'd really let someone be a Judicial Champion without enough rope to hang a man with?

I would be strongly inclined to require characters to keep hold of the stuff for their career and, if lost, make them replace it before they can advance within that career (as opposed to changing). I would have done this to my last party, but they kept themselves properly equipped all on their own and I never had to ask.

Wraith
2007-11-21, 09:10 AM
Have no fear, raygungothic - these are all things that people have tried to get away with and failed, in my games.

In fact - with the exception of unbalanced costs between certain classes - some are just plain exaggeration, however the RAW makes it perfectly legal. That's why I suggested that one keeps an eye out for such things, and be sure to have your own interpretations at the ready, is all :smallsmile:

raygungothic
2007-11-21, 12:01 PM
Wraith - ah, that's not so bad. I don't think WFRP is really meant to be taken as literally as many people take D&D3... it's inherently a far more hostile universe, after all :smallsmile: