If you start keeping track of Character Ages using the Warp Travel Times (see other thread) it becomes quite clear that in just a few game sessions a PC Rogue Trader could have children (or even grandchildren) old enough and educated enough to be serving with them aboard their vessel. The more you travel in the Warp, the less you physically age in Real Time. The benefits of this should be clear enough. Inheritors to the Dynasty...replacement PC's should something dreadful happen to the RT...built-in loyalty to the Dynasty etc. etc.
First you need a wife. (or husband...but for simplicity's sake I'm assuming a male RT who hasn't been ChemGelded)
A wife is so much more than the woman who does your underwear. Indeed, that's servitor's job anyway. This is Rogue Trader and RT is about Profit and Risk. Believe me, there's nothing riskier than getting married.
Most upper crust marriages in the Imperium are arranged, either through a treaty or marriage broker, so on and so forth and come with a complicated array of contracts, legal obligations and prenuptual agreements. Hence, I offer two abstract methods of finding a wife. Of course, the GM is not bound by this if he or she sees a Plot Hook coming on (for instance, Aberforth must return to Hydraphur to marry Zenia of the Schlomo Dynasty because their wedding was arranged at birth as part of an alliance between their Grandfathers...)
#1. Find one yourself. Whenever the PC is in an appropriate situation (once per game month) the player reminds the GM that he's prowling for a wife. The GM rolls on the tables below and records the results. Each step of the charts represents a Level of Success which added together will determine how many Charm Test successes the RT needs to successfully pop the question. The more quality the girl, the harder she is to woo. Each game month (need not be successive) the PC may make another Charm Test and keeps track of cumulative successes. When he feels "lucky" (i.e. guesses he has enough Successes), the PC can propose. Failure means starting over looking for another girl. Success means making a Routine Acquisition Test to prove he's worthy to "Daddy".
The GM does NOT reveal all the chart results at once. Each time a Charm Test is made successfully, the GM at his discretion can reveal the result on Chart #2, then Chart #3, then Chart #4 etc...representing the PC getting to know her better. The PC may decide to give up if he's not happy with the results.
#2. Marriage Broker. The PC says he's looking for a wife and makes an Acquisition Test representing fees to the Broker, gifts to the lady and family, legal fees, etc. For each Level of Success, the PC can increase the GM's die roll 1 pip on one chart of his choosing. The PC must choose before the rolls are made. If the results are not suitable for the PC, he may break off the engagement and try again next year.
Note: The Wife is either "With you" or "Away" meaning she's either on the ship (or otherwise in the vicinity) or she's "Away" living on one of your many Estates. Usually, this is self-explanatory when die roll modifiers are expressed or benefits accrued.
For instance, Social Interaction rolls. She doesn't necessarily need to be hanging on your arm to incur the modifier, but merely being on the ship might do whereas being on another planet obviously won't. Use common sense. How much time you spend with your spouse will affect their "Happiness Factor". This will be explained at the end and should be familiar to all men whose real life marriages work on a "points system", like mine. Also note that all bonuses/penalties are cumulative. You may get a wife with contradictory results that cancel each other out or a wife you simply can't do without due to the Social Interaction bonus she gives you by being near. Alternatively, you may get a hefty nag who you can't stand, but increases your Dynasty's Profit Factor or produces fine children...Or a beauty who gives great bonuses, but costs the Dynasty a lot to maintain. Lots of fun!
Chart #1 Looks
1-2 Homely. You may wish to consider artificial insemination. Double-Bagger and a bottle of cheap Amasec... Hide her away because she incurs a -10% penalty to all social interaction rules when "With you".
3-4 Corn-Fed Beauty A bit on the chunky side, but to each his own.
5 Butter Face Nice body... Children have -5% to Social Interaction rolls when "With you"
6-7 Plain Jane Hot in a nerdy-girl way.
8 Girl Next Door You wouldn't kick her out of the barn. / +3% to Social Interaction rolls when "With you"
9 Gorgeous. This woman is hotter than a Plasma Reactor. +5% to Social Interaction rolls when "With you"
10 Perfect. Dream Girl. +10% to Social Interaction rolls when "With you"
Chart #2 Social Class
Social Class is a big factor as her Dynasty is in essence merging with your Dynasty. Often this brings a substantial portion of wealth one way or the other as she brings her Dynasty's assets and contacts or you share yours with her family.
1-2 Commoner, Lose d5 Profit Factor upon marriage, Children gain +1 to all Stats (cuz they're not inbred Nobility...)
3-5 Lower Class than the RT, Lose d5 Profit Factor upon marriage
6-9 Same Class as the RT, No loss or gain in PF upon marriage
10 Higher Class than the RT, gain d5 Profit Factor upon marriage
Chart #3 Personality
1-2 She's a shrill, frigid ***** who cannot be pleased. Happiness Factor will never exceed 70 and she incurs a -5% penalty on Social Interaction rolls and -10% to Willpower Tests when "With you". All Procreation attempts suffer a -10% penalty to success. Character must make an annual Toughness Test or become an alcoholic (LOL, that's optional...)
3-5 She's a bossy, nagging woman typical of her gender, but she has her tender moments. If her Happiness Factor ever drops below 60, she incurs a -5% to Social Interaction and Willpower Tests when "With you" and a -5% on Procreation attempts.
6-7 26 days out of the Lunar cycle, she's easy enough to get along with. No bonuses or penalties
8-9 She's a witty conversationalist and you rather miss her when she's "Away". +3% to Social Interaction rolls when "With You"
10 Witty and funny, enjoys similar pursuits and very knowledgable on a variety of topics. She always knows just what to say...and when not to. You have the feeling she's trying to control you...but you like it. +5 to Social Interaction and Willpower Tests when "With You".
Chart #4 Home Economics
1-2 Unfaithful tramp. She likes to spend money...lots of it. Sometimes on her gigolos. For each successful Procreation attempt, there is a 25% chance the child is not yours. If her Happiness Factor drops below 80, she will cost you 1 Profit Factor for each year she is "Away".
3-4 High Maintenance. She likes to throw lavish parties and expects the best of everything, which is unfortunately typical of a Lady in her Social Class. She, however, has no concept of restraint. Each year "Away" she costs the Dynasty d5 Profit Factor.
5-6 Lazy and unambitious. She costs the Dynasty 1 PF per year regardless of "With" or "Away" status not because she spends to much but rather she neglects her social duties and the "routine maintenance" of the Dynasty's holdings.
7-8 Typical Lady of the Nobility. She likes to do all the things Noble Born women do, but she doesn't go overboard. Sometimes she actually manages to increase the Dynasty's fortune with a well-thrown party with well-connected people. Every year "Away" roll d10. On a "1" she costs the Dynasty 1 PF. On a "10" she gains the Dynasty 1 PF.
9 Thrifty and conservative, this woman manages to gain the Dynasty a steady 1 Profit Factor per year "Away"
10 A genius of household and business management and a true social butterfly, she gains the Dynasty d5 Profit Factor every year "Away" and +5 to Social Interaction rolls when "With you".
Chart #5 Demeanor
1-2 Cold and distant. She likes her "me" time and doesn't mind that you're gone. You get half the bonuses/penalties for "Spending Time" to her Happiness Factor. You also incur a -5% penalty to Procreation Attempts.
3-7 Typical Lady who enjoys spending time with you whether she loves you or hates you and just wants to make you miserable. No bonuses/penalties
8-9 Frisky and needs attention. However else she thinks of you, she knows you're good for one thing at least. Double your "Spending Time" bonus and increase your Procreation Attempts by 5%. Her HF will automatically decrease by 2 every month instead of one (see Happiness Factor below)
10 Adventurous. She likes being on the Ship and accompanying you on your journeys. That could be good, that could be bad. All Happiness Factor modifiers from "Away" or "With You" are reversed.
Chart #6 Genetics
1 10% chance children will have a Mutation
2 5% chance children will develop Psyker powers
3-8 Children will be normal
9 Children will have 5 extra Stat points
10 Children will have 10 extra Stat points.
"What's LOVE got to do with it?"
Happiness Factor is pretty simple. Low HF, she hates him, High HF she loves him. Love/Hate blah blah...it boils down to how "Happy" she is.
Every "actual" year of the wife's life (whether it be 'Real' time or combination of 'Warp Time' + 'Real' Time) the GM rolls a d100. If the result exceeds her Happiness Factor, she's Unhappy. The PC must make a Charm Test with the difficulty modified by how far the GM's roll exceeded tolerance levels...or she Divorces him. For example, Rogue Trader Abdul Goldberg calculates his wife's Happiness Factor for that year and after all the modifiers are said and done she's got a HF of 64. the GM rolls 78. Abdul must make a Routine Charm Test with a 14% penalty. Starting HF is d100+25, not to exceed 100.
Every Month it goes down 1. Automatically. No matter what. Every time an Endeavor "Misfortune" occurs it will also go down 1. Each month she spends onboard Ship (in general "With You" it will go down an additional 1. Ladies like their creature comforts, parties, High Society etc.
"Spending Time" with her makes her HF go up by 2 each month you do it. To "Spend Time" with her, she has to either be "With You" or you have to be in a System where one or more of your Estates are located. She'll come to you, if you're nearby. Example: She spends 2 months "With You" aboard ship, you break even as you lose 2 (she hates shipboard life) and gain 2 (she gets to nag you about your driving). You spend 3 months on Scintilla getting your ship retrofitted, she's "Away" but you get to spend time with her, net gain of 3 HF. You go on a 4 month journey into the Koronus Expanse, she loses 4 Happiness Factor. Easy.
You can also forgo one of your alloted Acquisition Tests per game year and gain HF equal to your successes.
Easy enough. If the GM doesn't want to get detailed about the nuptual arrangements, assume getting Divorced cost the Dynasty 5+d10 Profit Factor and she gets the kids under 12. Hey, whatta bargain, that's not even Half! (But enough to dissuade Players from throwaway marriages)
Children: You can, of course, choose one of the many fine birth control methods the Imperium has to offer, but assuming children are wanted, the PC can make a Procreation Attempt every week. The accidental rate is 15% chance per week that she's "With You" or you're "Spending Time" with her. If you seriously want to get down to business, you can devote a whole month to "Domestication" and increase the chance to 35% per week, but you must spend the entire month with her even if she's pregnant before the month is up.
So this is intended to be used as an abstract way of keeping the Dynasty "alive" and also intended to be used with...
...to keep track of Real/Warp time. I hope you enjoyed it and feel free to add/subtract/suggest/use/abuse however you see fit. They are "House Rules" after all!