Thursday, July 14, 2011

Deathwatch Roleplaying - Session 2

Disclaimer: Very minimal reference to actual 40k here. Read on if interested.

So our party discovered that the Rogue Trader's crew from the Daedelus (the semi-derelict Rogue Trader vessal we had boarded during our first adventure to discover there was a Genestealer cult on board and some indications of a previous chaos infestation) had fled the ship. Or at least the officers had. Our Inquisitor wishes to understand what happened aboard the Daedelus, he feels it may be connected with the problems this sector has been having recently.

We learned of the location of the ship's Navigator, who was holed up in a noble's mansion on a moon orbiting a nearby gas giant. The Planetary Defense Force had sent in two platoons supported by Sentinels to bring the Navigator in for questioning - but the entire force disappeared without a trace.

Ruh roh.

We knew that the Manor was well equipped with auspex arrays which would detect any traditional landing craft. Thus the plan was to be inserted via Grav Chute with our gear being dropped separately in automated gliders. Grav Chutes not really being designed for Space Marines, we had to strip ourselves to the bare essentials.

Even so, the Assault Marine's Grav Chute failed, and he had to use his Jump Pack to control his descent. We knew this would give away our position.

Upon landing, we realized that there had been a mixup onboard our ship, and most of the gear that was dropped with us was Imperial Guard issue kit and not our own equipment. The IG gear was smashed up, as it is not built to the same standard as Astartes wargear. We had our weapons, but very limited ammunition.

A new team member had joined us this session, another Devastator (he wanted to try something simple), so we had a Missile Launcher Devastator (Blood Angel), a Heavy Bolter Devastator (Dark Angel), a Tactical Marine (Ultramarine), an Assault Marine (Blood Angel) and myself, a Dark Angels Librarian.

So after gathering up what ammunition we could, we set out towards the compound. On the way, we discovered a vehicle convoy approaching along a road running down the ravine we were following. Their lights were on and they moved directly towards us.

We set up an L-shaped ambush, readying ourselves to take out the lead and trail vehicles and "unleash hell." As the vehicles got closer, our augmented Astartes vision detected that they were Manor Guard vehicles, and they clearly had been through a firefight. Recognizing the possibility that these may be friendlies, the squad leader (the Ultramarines Tactical) decided to at least give them a chance to live. While the rest of us prepared to engage, he boldly stepped into the road, raised his hand and called upon the vehicles to halt in the name of the Emperor.

The vehicles immediately slammed to a halt. Out of the lead vehicle a leader appeared, and timidly asked "Angel of Death... may we pass?" He went on to explain that they were part of the manor guard and had escaped with their lives after being attacked by "horrible things."

My librarian at this time detected a faint psyker presence in the middle vehicle. We also noted that while the words coming out of the convoy leader's mouth seemed genuine, his eyes rolled wildly around and stared at nothing. I voxed that there was a psyker in the convoy (we had intelligence that the Navigator had Rogue Psykers working for her) and the squad leader gave the command to open fire. The Krak Missile Devastator immediately turned the middle vehicle into a flaming wreck, and my Librarian cast Smite on the truck bed of the front vehicle into a bloody pool as I liquified the passengers. Personnel began jumping out of the remaining truck but we saw that instead of fighting they were running and cowering.

As we approached in confusion, one of our number noticed the whistle of incoming mortar rounds. The trucks had been bait for an ambush. We were able to get to cover in time, and an instant later the trucks were swallowed in multiple detonations. Almost all of the human passengers (the bait) were killed in an instant, although one of the Kill Team members managed to haul two of them to cover with him.

We moved out of the kill zone and the barrage ended.

Once we got to safety, I interrogated the surviving humans. It became clear that they had been enthralled by a rogue witch (psyker) and had even been forced into cannibalism while under the control of the psyker. After learning what we could, it became obvious they were tainted beyond salvation, and we granted them the Emperor's Mercy.

We approached the compound, which was on high alert. Clearly the PDF had fallen under the sway of the psyker. Two sentinels patrolled the base, and multiple missile and heavy stubber emplacements dotted the compound. Thankfully, most of the defenses seemed to be focused on defeating an airborne assault, though the heavy weapons did pose a threat to us as well.

We waited until we had a clear shot at one of the Sentinels and the other was on the far side of the main manor house. One of the Devastators took it down with a single Krak Missile shot. The Heavy Bolter opened fire, suppressing the heavy stubber emplacements on the ground, and the Assault Marine used his Jump Pack to leap onto the manor roof and began dealing with the heavy weapons there. Our Tactical Marine began issuing squad commands to help us move in closer, and we advanced while firing our bolters and bolt pistols into any targets that presented themselves. The second sentinel came around the corner and prepared to fire, but was hit by a second missile from our vigilant Devastator. This time, the missile failed to destroy the machine. As it prepared to fire my Librarian unleashed a Pushed Smite (meaning I ran a high risk of a Perils of the Warp occurance in exchange for greatly increased power) attack, crushing the cab of the sentinel like an aluminum can.

Once the yard was cleared, we proceeded inside and discovered that the Navigator and Rogue Psyker were defended by hordes of PDF troops. While the Heavy Bolter went to work on clearing the troops, the Assault Marine made a daring assault across a long open room directly at the Navigator. He wanted to claim that kill.

The Rogue Psyker began to turn us on one another, though thankfully we were standing close enough to the Heavy Bolter Devastator that he could not fire his weapon at us and was forced to resort to feebly clubbing us under the psyker's control. The Tactical Marine and Missile Launcher Dev opened up with Bolters and dropped the Rogue Psyker quickly.

My Librarian started helping to clear the PDF troops with my Smite and Avenger powers (I discovered that Smite sucks against Hordes, in the future I will only use Avenger) and the Assault Marine took some significant damage after gazing into the Navigator's third eye, but managed to take it apart with his chain swords.

In the end we succeeded in killing the Navigator and before the Rogue Psyker died I intercepted a message intended for the other officers from the Daedelus, and thus learned their identities.

Anyways, that's what I did on Tuesday night.