News for September 2010
Brides of the Emperor 25
A designer diary for Blood of Martyrs, the upcoming Dark Heresy supplement
Dark Heresy | Published 21 September 2010

Salutations Acolytes!

It is possible that there is no bigger fan of the Inquisition and the Ecclesiarchy than myself. I fell in love with the Imperial Creed years ago at a local game store when the manager started up an Inquisitor game. My enthusiasm has reached new heights with the imminent release of Blood of Martyrs, the upcoming sourcebook for Dark Heresy.

The Ecclesiarchy plays a strong role in the culture of the Imperium of Man. It seeps into the every day life and defines characters in both broad and subtle ways. It is nearly impossible to escape, as the characters relationship to the Adeptus Ministorum plays into his story sooner or later. In Blood of Martyrs, our devout team of writers pored over more than a decade of gaming lore to bring the most comprehensive look at the Ecclesiarchy of the Calixis Sector to date.

Because all Imperial Citizens are in some way touched by the Imperial Creed, I felt it was very important for every Dark Heresy Career to have options for making faithful characters. The Alternate Career Ranks, Backgrounds and even three new home worlds inside Blood of Martyrs offer a ton of options for playing a faithful character who is a Guardsman, Assassin, or any of the other Dark Heresy Careers!

This week’s designer diary focuses on another aspect of Blood of Martyrs (and one of my favorite bits of the book!): the Adepta Sororitas.

One of the most iconic images of Ecclesiarchal influence and might are the Sisters of Battle. Created in the wake of Goge Vandire’s defeat, the Battle Sisters function as the militant arm of the Ecclesiarchy. Their power armour, bolters, and unshakeable faith bring hope on the battlefield and inspiration to Imperial Cathedrals across the galaxy.

Many Inquisitors of the Ordo Hereticus call upon the Battle Sisters when dealing with Heretics, Mutants, and Psykers. In Blood of Martyrs, the Adepta Sororitas Orders are presented as distinct character options, including the combat ready Battle Sister and the non-militant orders of the Dialogous, Famulous, and Hospitaller.

During development, the Blood of Martyrs team knew that one critical aspect of this book is for players to be able to take the role of the iconic Sisters from the beginning of a campaign and feel as if they were on a path distinctly their own. Each career or alternate career rank has talents, equipment, and other options from rank 1, making each Sister feel part of her distinct Order. This arrangement provides options for new campaigns as well as those that have been running for quite some time.

Thanks to the variety present in the new alternate career ranks, faith talents, and equipment, Blood of Martyrs gives the tools necessary to play an Ecclesiarchy Cell in service of a Cardinal or Ordo Hereticus Inquisitor. Acolyte groups comprised completely of the faithful (or even of only Adepta Sororitas), can be a rewarding campaign. Each player feels unique and has specialized skills setting them apart from one another.

Blood of Martyrs was an extremely exciting first project to work on and I can’t wait to get it into the hands of the players. I look forward to hearing stories at conventions from all of you about the tales of “Enemies Within” and dark investigations your gaming group crafted.

Next up... Ecclesiarchal Cell Directives!

Dark Heresy is a roleplaying game set in the Warhammer 40,000 universe, a setting in the grim darkness of the far future. Players take on the roles of Acolytes serving the Inquisition, rooting out heresy and corruption from within the galaxy-spanning Imperium of Man.

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Comments (25)

Sister Cat
Published: 11/10/2010 9:08:35 AM

Awesome!  Can't wait!  Can we expect ... hopefully ... some better definition of exactly what the Imperial Creed is - what the official version is - and what, exactly, it says?

I mean, other than the propaganda of the Imperial Infantrymans' Primer?

Just very, very curious.

Published: 10/12/2010 1:03:29 AM

I must admit one thing - I'll buy this book just because of the cover. :)

But seriously, if the mentioned distinction of the Sisters will be presented on the basis of different classes and specializations (not  just one Rank as in IH), it will be useful thing to have. Main npc in my campaign is Sister of Battle and when she appears she causes a lot of commotion in the group. ;)

And of course additional carreer paths, backgrounds and specific planets are always a welcome addition to DH. They give characters more depth (which GM may use in many interesting ways).

Published: 10/6/2010 7:05:54 PM

So this is the Puritan's Handbook? :)


Anyways, I'm excited. This feels like the begining of more playable non-inquisition adepta games...

The Laughing God
Published: 10/3/2010 4:02:49 AM

didn't we already have stats on Sisters of Battle in the Inquisitor's Handbook? will that crunch be superseded?

Published: 9/23/2010 6:25:01 PM

shame its not bigger :) well its going to be frakin great no matter what :)

Published: 9/23/2010 12:48:04 PM


128-144 pages most probably, in line with other products (like Creatures Anathema and Lure of the Expanse) of the same price. Btw, Amazon lists this and the Edge of the Abyss as 144-page books.

Published: 9/23/2010 6:16:09 AM

any idea of the page count?

Published: 9/22/2010 8:38:50 AM

@Varnias: Mack did, I think.

I can't wait to see this book in print :D It was the first Dark Heresy book I got invited to playtest (which came with it being Mack's first book as lead dev), and a pleasure to read. I just really want this book :P

Published: 9/22/2010 7:02:14 AM

a book that lets you play an all female party, thats almost as bonkers as an rpg set round a brotherhood...

just you wait some feckless tosser is going to have a "i have never been with a woman and still live at home" problem with this female character book.

yes it has options for everyone having some sort of faith thing going on but this book is definatly one for the ladies! and about bloody time too.

thank you and well done FFG for giving us ROLE players something to enjoy :)

Varnias Tybalt
Published: 9/22/2010 5:57:02 AM

Cool stuff... But, who wrote this particular designer diary? Can't see any signature. :S

Published: 9/22/2010 5:51:24 AM

@Shattercake, that goes for essentially any career. Unless a Guardsman takes an alternate rank 1 career (of which I believe they only have one option of) all Rank 1 Guardsmen are essentially the same. However, initial XP expenditures/choices, worlds or origin, background packages can create different sisters (or any career) from rank 1. But I am looking forward to this book. Personally Only War should be first, but hey, whatever order I get them in will in the end be fine.

@Magos S: I assume even temple worlds have Tech Priests to run their gear and techology, so I assume it would be a tech priest who is familiar with the Imperial Creed and has connections with the Imperial Cult.

@ Mortic: Maccabeus Quintus is in the Inquisitor's Handbook. I assume we will get something like Shrine WOrld, Cathedral World, Pilgrim World or some Sister of Battle Specific world.

Published: 9/22/2010 2:11:58 AM

The 3 worlds mention, anyone have an idea who they can be? I hope for Maccabeus Quintus.

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