News for September 2009
Happiness is a Warm Boltgun 22
Tim Huckelbery discusses the Rogue Trader's Armoury
Rogue Trader | Published 22 September 2009

Hello, Rogue Trader fans!

This week I'm proud to present Rogue Trader writer Tim Huckelbery, and his musings on the Armoury Chapter. 

Hi there folks, I’m Tim Huckelbery and one of the sections I wrote for in the Rogue Trader core book was the Armoury section, which, luckily enough, is what we’re going to talk about in this Designer’s Diary. So settle in, pour yourself a few fingers of wobble, undo your holster’s thumb break (this place looks a little rough), and I’ll talk a little about my role in Rogue Trader weapons and gear section.

I got started working on the Warhammer 40,000 Roleplay line way back in the initial Dark Heresy development days, when I handled the core rulebook's armoury section. That was my first gig writing for a roleplaying game, and I’ve been contributing to the line ever since.

I’ve always enjoyed the “techie” parts of the Warhammer 40,000 universe, and I love trying to figure out how they could work in a semi-realistic manner with a minimum of resorting to “handwavium” (aka, waving your hands in the air and saying “well that’s how it works here, we’ll ignore all the laws of physics”). I normally to keep things inside the realm of solidly possibly technology—except, of course, this is a universe where painting a vehicle red will indeed make it go faster (at least for Orks). It’s a setting where along with the four basic fundamental physical forces like gravity or electromagnetism, you also have things like Faith and Warp Energies that can be just as powerful. Which means writing about the various weapons and gear involves an interesting mix of techno-speak and theology at times, and makes working on them a fun challenge.

So speaking of working—writing for the Armoury section for Rogue Trader was both easily familiar but sometimes difficult to do. Obviously we wanted to use many of the same weapons and equipment from the first game in this new book, especially as they are meant to be compatible together, but we didn’t want to simply reprint what we’d done before. So the task was to provide the 'staple' weapons of the 41st Millennium while keeping them new and interesting for Dark Heresy fans.

The result has many of the mainstay items of the Warhammer 40,000, but most have minor variants and twists to keep them fresh. We’ve also added quite a lot of new items, especially new bits of xenos technology. As the important crew on a Rogue Trader's vessel there will be lots of contact with aliens and many opportunities to trade/find/steal their devices! You’ll see eldar shuriken catapults, ork sluggas, kroot rifles, and other famous alien items, alongside the new and mysterious Crux Beam Guns, deadly Fractal Blades, and more.

As your characters are more powerful and have access to a wider variety of gear, we’ve also included higher end items like Digital Weapons and a broad variety of personal bionics so players can customize their bodies as well as their clothing. You’ll also find little bits like alternate firing modes for plasma weapons, and fun new things like groxwhips, shock gloves, warhammers (how could we not have them for this game!), and power mauls. Overall I think players will get some interesting gear to work with as they set out to explore the Koronus Expanse. It’s a dangerous place, and you’ll be wanting to be fully kitted out before embarking on your voyage.

You may have noticed there is a lot of “we” mentioned above. That’s because this book had a strong collaborative effort going from the start. From the beginning, all of the writers for Rogue Trader were brought together thanks to the wonders of the Internet. This allowed us to discuss topics, propose ideas, pass around drafts for critique, and in general all work together to make this the best possible book we could. I have to say this was the best part of working on the game—all of the wonderful ideas that bounced around (some of which bounced right out of this book, but may still turn up elsewhere), checking our worksite to see who had posted up what new things for review, and in general having a great bunch of people to collaborate with for the project. It was a great period of time with lots of late nights and scattered Warhammer 40,000 reference works (my work room floor was covered with old books and magazines for many months), but a really wonderful experience.

Rogue Trader is a roleplaying game set in dark gothic far future of Games Workshop's Warhammer 40,000 universe. Players take on the roles of explorers aboard a Rogue Trader's ship, searching for profit and adventure while discovering new alien cultures and threats in the uncharted regions of space.

 

 

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Comments (22)

Grid Reaper1
Published: 9/22/2009 7:35:11 PM
#10

 @ Luther:

mine too. but he will never carry a copy of the RT rule book, because even in the 41st millenium, it will not yet be released it seems...

ThenDoctor
Published: 9/22/2009 7:35:05 PM
#9

Guys come on give them a break releasing a game is like shooting something to mars, it takes time and towards the end about 50,000 major minor problems rise up to delay it further or halt entirely. Dont worry guys you have one fan who is keeping faith and waiting patiently take your time and make it good. though if you have any say on how DH productions go ask them about adding a designer diary i kind of miss them and i havent heard anything for so long now...im afraid that a warp storm has engulfed all communication means or even *gasps* the gamemakers themselves *grabs a holy boltgun and powersword* IM COMING GUYS

-people should join up with the crusade to have faith in FFG!-

Mazinkaiser
Published: 9/22/2009 6:52:01 PM
#8

yeah I agree, these "previews" are really starting to drag. :( What's next? "Hey guys, just came to talk about the binding of this book! It'll hold your pages nice and snug and features anti-fall apart technology!"

Come on FFG, what's the release date? :P 

Psychopomp
Published: 9/22/2009 6:45:30 PM
#7

Hmmm.  This is the most blatant soft-shoe shuffle to distract us from the delay of release yet.

There are guns and gear.  Okay.  Great.  Thank you.  Ship the book.

Dalnor Surloc
Published: 9/22/2009 6:28:32 PM
#6

Is it just me or is this the most useless post ever.  Random musings.  Where is the beef?  No stats for weapons.  No preview of the deions?

Mazinkaiser
Published: 9/22/2009 5:24:00 PM
#5

 Great, very cool!

Now... WHEN IS THE RELEASE DATE!!! :D

Tullio
Published: 9/22/2009 5:05:42 PM
#4

Mmm, fun. Another little useless bloody titbit to try and make us forget that we haven't got the damn book yet

nos4artu
Published: 9/22/2009 4:56:02 PM
#3

Lovely stuff.  NOW HOW ABOUT RELEASING THE GAME?

Shadowspawn
Published: 9/22/2009 4:30:37 PM
#2

 Sounds great so far. Now I'd like to actually be able to purchase the book. ;)

Luther
Published: 9/22/2009 4:28:14 PM
#1

Awww Yeah, baby.

My Rogue Trader will definately be carrying a Kroot Rifle and some Digital Weapons...

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