Ship's Armoury

By Edith The Hutt, in Rogue Trader Gamemasters

I've just started my first campaign of Rogue Trader and I'm a little worried. There's only one book in the entire group and the prospects of getting more are fairly slim. My group spent the whole session on character generation and we didn't even get to the ship or aquisition section yet. I suspect that if my next session is more of the same then I'll lose players and the campaign will collapse.

I've already resolved to give the PCs a pre-built ship and while they won't have too much of a Profit Factor (the plot involves the player Rogue Trader inheriting a grand old ship, a large pile of debts and a treasure map at the start of the campaign) I suspect there will be quite a bit of a shopping trip, which will excite some players and cause others to leave.

My solution to this is to have a ship's armoury to deal with most types of personal equipment the PCs will want. I figure that the PCs can probably afford at least enough of most types of equipment for the party and perhaps for a small squad of goons should they require it.

In order to do this I want to build up a list of some standard pieces of equipment which I can simply hand out on index cards, as I'm trying to avoid having 5 players each go through the book and select a personal set of kit each simply having some generically useful items seems like a good idea.

Any suggestions as to which sets of equipment might be in a Rogue Trader's armoury or gun closest? I'm thinking of things like "20 sets of stormtrooper carapace and matching hell guns for seriously heavy work" or "auspexes, lots of auspexes" rather than "just assume one of whatever they want so long as it's more available than Very Rare" The idea is to save time and cut to the roleplaying without worrying too much about equipment specifics at the start of the campaign whilst being able to hand out equipment in a quick and easy manner should it be asked for.

Well in my campaign to cut down on the aquisition thing i followed the following rules:

Basic carreer gear plus:

3 other items

only one of which may be very rare or extremly rare.

on top of that 1 free weapons upgrade. Others may be taken but these count as one of the 3 extra items.

oh and i made it so that this is all automatic, these guys obviously have had a rather awesome carreer up until the point of play so it seems fitting they would have picked up some kool stuff.

Thats all. it gives them a semi personilized kit but limits them as well. (so we dont have 6 people in power armour with kick ass targeting systems bionic everythings and storm bolters)

thats just my 2 cents.

Now for the armoury...

Id suggest small quantities of basic weapons from all fields, less for the melta and plasma weapons since you dont really wanna be shooting plasma or melta weapons into your spaceships hull (also keep explosives to a minimum for the same reason).

lots of void suits.

some basic armours and a few carapaces to represent raiders etc.

other then that i wouldnt know sorry.

Shotguns, Flat Boarding Shields(IH), and Iron Talon pistols(IH) are ship interiors best friends. These would probably be the bulk of most armories.

I would go for:

- Lots of Pump-Action (or normal for paranoid Captains) Shotguns
- Naval Shields
- Cutlasses and Clubs
- Stub Automatics
- Light Flak Coats (for boarding missions)
- Flamers (For cleaning out them pipes)

^^^ pretty much. Basically, quantities of far inferior stuff to what the players already have. I would encourage your players to invest in their ship early though- As our starting acquisitions we bought an entire ships supply of medkits (our GM let us have anything 'common' as a ship resource if we wanted scarce as the RAW it would be just one item) and a healthy batch of ship emergency kits scattered throughout the ship.

This kind of question is one minor problem with the scale of game we're talking about. Like, your characters own a starship crewed by 50,000 guys, but they only get 3 starting weapons. Um, what? How do you reconcile the ability to pay 50,000 guys and operate a starship with the attempt to to keep your characters from owning a metric crap-ton of gear?

I'm not sure.

Comes with the ship, assume your crew can arm itself to repel boarders or to accompagny the pc's every once in a while, you do not have enough weapons to arm your entire crew though..

Grashnak said:

This kind of question is one minor problem with the scale of game we're talking about. Like, your characters own a starship crewed by 50,000 guys, but they only get 3 starting weapons. Um, what? How do you reconcile the ability to pay 50,000 guys and operate a starship with the attempt to to keep your characters from owning a metric crap-ton of gear?

I'm not sure.

Feudal subservience.

The Rogue Trader owns a “metric crap-ton of gear”,several million actually. The players own 2-3 weapons of choice that they use for most things. If the ship has an item in its armory then the players should have that item at their disposal. If an individual player feels the need to have a personal arsenal of weapons in their chambers then so be it, but they can only carry so much into a fight.

Not all RTs are going to keep stockpiles of high explosives on their ships and very few are going to have more than just a few bolt, plasma or melta weapons due to the fact most of the shipboard personnel are not going to be trained to use them and the RT is not going to let people run around his ship blasting or melting holes in support beams, bulk heads and the hull with missed shots. As for those times that an RT is carrying guardsmen in mass then they would have an appropriate combat load out, with which they are not allowed to interact with while on board the ship.

As for the 50,000 crewmen, at best a few hundred are armsmen. The rest are average to below average stat mooks with one skill related directly to what their job is. In a fight they are not going to be of any use except to run in fear or attack in mass and do little but slow down a well armed attack force.

There are times I really hate this forum software.

In general I assume that the PCs can make acquisition checks on board ship. Provided it's reasonable, and they only want a few items. Their people check cargo manifests, armories, and put the word out to the crew. For basic weapons, and gear I don't even roll. Boarding armor from IH check, mono melee weapons check, lasguns check, normal quality aspex check, basic grenades.... Now finding something like a power sword, power armor, or best quality anything. It's a roll at -30. +15 for an armory (weapons/armor only), and +10 for a cargo hold.

If you are a pain in the ass about getting simple gear you are in for a 3 hour session of PCs pouring over the book, arguing, and making rolls. This is what I did:

3)You may get one additional item of rare availability in addition to the standard Acquisition on page 34. A 5 clips of ammo counts a 1 item. You may add any mods up to rare to the item.
4)You may a number of scarce/average v items equal to your fellowship BONUS +/- any profit bonus/penalty. 10 clips of ammo counts as one item. Grenades and the like are 5 per item.
5)You may a number common or lower quality items equal to your fellowship SCORE.

Note- It is assumed that you have access to reasonable amounts of standard ammo for any weapon you own. (Exception for "found" weapons that are very rare or more. ) You'll need to have access to your ship or be in a port where such things can be found. Access to a supply of standard ammo is worked into the difficulty of acquisition.

I included ammo as there are non standard ammo types in the book. So if you wanted the better ammo types for your bolter. You'd need to take that as a free acquisition or make acquisition checks at a later point. You can make an acquisition check to get a supply of a given ammo type. Assuming you aren't burning through rare ammo/drugs/items at every opportunity you'll always have some on board ship. (If you are burning through stuff you may need to make an acquisition check.)

Note2- In general you should feel free to write down you have a bolter and x clips on your person. If you head out for an extended trip in a guncutter, or other vehicle just note you have x number of clips of additional ammo. I'm not going to object if you have 2 or 3 clips on your person unless it's a formal event. Nor 20-30 additional clips in the trunk. Now if you have 4 weapons, 3 clips each, and 30 each in the trunk... We'll have a problem. Just remember a clip for a boltgun is huge. Imagine a clip 3/4th the size of your forearm. (Bolt pistol clips are much smaller.) Also remember check the weight, and think about the bulk. Carrying a boltgun, hellpistol,, and autopistol is reasonable. Carrying more than 2 "guns" (aka rifle) is unreasonable, and carrying a melta and anything more than a pistol is way too much.

I have to agree. If it is in small amounts I let the players have most normal items. Dithering over the profit factor and availability to pick up a single bolt pistol is a waste of my (and my players) time. You want something juicy though like best quality power armor with a military power supply? OK that requires a closer look.

My problem is that my group are traders-militant and on their ship of ~10000 men they have at least a company, but probably closer to two, of veteran guardsman equivalent troops along with a platoons worth of combat-medic psykers. At some point I will have to start keeping a spreadsheet to explain how much of what kind of weapon they have and who has it at the time. Now in this ships armoury there should be enough specialist gear to outfit a platoon led by the PCs should they strip it from the rest of the forces, maybe even good enough to make a fireteam of actual stormtroopers. What kind of numbers should we be talking about if they could stretch all armaments to ensure a tenth of the crew has a ranged weapon of some sort?