News for February 2009
Go Beyond the Imperium 30
Presenting the new W40K RPG -- Rogue Trader
Rogue Trader | Published 20 February 2009

by Ross Watson

Welcome to the first designer diary article for Warhammer 40,000 Roleplay: Rogue Trader! The new role-playing game set in the Warhammer 40K universe, and the follow up to the hugely success Dark Heresy roleplaying gameI am very pleased and proud to talk about this game of exploration, profit, and danger among the stars.

Fans of Dark Heresy will be happy to know that Rogue Trader is fully compatible with their game system, and Dark Heresy characters can join a Rogue Trader on his voyages! The Rogue Trader core rulebook has an extensive section on bringing over characters from one game into the next.

I think the best way to start is to cast a little light on the Warhammer 40,000 universe and the place of Rogue Traders within it. Luckily for us, Warhammer 40,000 novelist and GW Design Studio member Andy Hoare has written some excellent guides to both in the core rulebook!

The Grim Darkness of the Far Future

A vast and scattered realm extending over almost the entire galaxy, the Imperium of Mankind has been the bastion of the human race for over 10,000 years. Down through the centuries, the Imperium has survived disasters, treachery, heresies, and invasions of aliens bent on the destruction of all mankind. The Imperium’s greatest strengths are the God-Emperor of Mankind and his vast armies and fleets.

Although the Imperium controls more than a million worlds, that is merely a fraction of the galactic whole—there are fringes and frontier zones where human settlers are renegades, pioneers, or forgotten colonies lost millennia ago. Most of the galaxy remains unexplored, unknown...and very, very dangerous.

Enter the Rogue Traders

The potential of new worlds, alien civilisations and unimaginable resources made necessary a class of free-ranging Imperial agents known as Rogue Traders. Licensed and often equipped by the Adeptus Terra, the Rogue Trader is free to explore the far, uncharted regions of the galaxy. Rogue Traders have even attempted to cross the voids of intergalactic space, but over such distances even the Astropaths’ powers of communication are useless, and whether such missions have succeeded is unknown. Operating in isolation from the central authority of the Imperium, the Rogue Trader must decide how to react to alien cultures, new discoveries and threats. If he judges a race to be potentially dangerous he may attempt to destroy it, or gather as much information as he can so that others may do so. If he decides a race may be of use to Humanity he may attempt to make contact and establish relations. If merely rich in technology or minerals, a planet may be plundered, and the Rogue Trader will return to Terra laden with the treasure of space—alien artefacts, rare and precious minerals and undreamed of technology.

Coming Soon

So, I imagine the first thing on most reader’s minds right now is, “What’s coming up next?” Over the next few weeks and months, you will see more previews of the contents of the book, updates, and designer diaries not only from myself but also from the various writers who helped make the core rulebook of Rogue Trader come to be.

Until then, to enjoy the new Rogue Trader site, go here.

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Comments (30)

Published: 2/21/2009 3:55:40 PM

I just can't wait to buy RT rulebook :D

Laurence J Sinclair
Published: 2/21/2009 3:49:15 PM

Spaceship design and combat rules?  Ooh...

Published: 2/21/2009 9:38:15 AM

I wonder if Rogue Trader will features a rules set that emphasises trade, commerce and market strategies - something possible, considering FFG's experience in game design -  or if it will be more of a combat-oriented game like what has been published so far by Games Worswhop about the WH40K universe.


Let's wait and see...

Published: 2/21/2009 4:20:13 AM

This is going to be very, very sweet...!

Shadow Hexagram
Published: 2/21/2009 1:02:18 AM

Yeah !!! Go !! Go !! Rogue Trader !!

I'm also really happy to see that Andy Hoare contributed to this much anticipated W40K RPG !!

Published: 2/20/2009 7:04:59 PM

Apols for the multi-posts. Shouldn't refresh, clearly.

Published: 2/20/2009 4:50:28 PM

DES CRIP TION fer crying out loud!!!!!!!

Published: 2/20/2009 4:49:44 PM

ok, so word "deion" is mutating even as it melds with the physical realm. Clearly our navigator as missed a cue and we are now in the Eye.

Published: 2/20/2009 4:43:57 PM

 Wow! Been waiting since I first got 40k in 1987! 22 years!!!

Published: 2/20/2009 4:19:00 PM

That'll be ' From the deion'...

Published: 2/20/2009 4:18:13 PM

From the Deion, it sounds as though this is the next step on for DH characters. Reached Commander/Sniper/Strom Trooper then move up to Arch Militant et cetera... If we're talking sector spanning adventures out into the Periphery and beyond, then the power levels must go up too and a starting DH character is gonna be Kroot-food in these rarified heights of the Imperial strategic mission.

Published: 2/20/2009 4:00:03 PM

Great news!  Envious of everyone at GenCon who gets the first peek.

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