Minions and Henchmen

Minions

The various servants, employees, and support staff available to characters are known as Minions. These are (mostly) nameless, faceless NPCs willing to support players' efforts, at least within reason. They are individually of little use but collectively invaluable, such as the soldiers that make up a regiment or the crewmen necessary to keep a voidship running.

Due to their only real importance being service as a combined force, Minions are rarely tracked on an individual level. The general rule of thumb is that any given Minion can be replaced with little effort.

Unless otherwise stated, assume that Minions are oriented toward the job they are first assigned.

Quality

Quality is a general descriptor for Minions' training, natural aptitude, or discipline when performing their duties.

Characteristic/Skill Rating is the actual numerical value assigned a Minion, taking the place of characteristics or skills for tests.

Minions use their full CSR for tasks related to their primary job, but only half their CSR for all other work.

Conscripts: Mostly press-ganged civilians or convicted criminals, conscripts are able but often unwilling.
Volunteers: Fresh-faced recruits or the more competent kind of criminal, worth at least a little training.
Professionals: Competent, well-trained, and experienced, professionals are the operating standard.
Veterans: Professionals who have acquired considerable experience and/or specialized training.
Elites: Elites are at the top of their field, with an exceptional level of competency and discipline.

Quality Acquisition CSR
Conscript +10 20
Volunteer +0 30
Professional -10 40
Veteran -20 50
Elite -40 60

Henchmen

Particularly competent Minions with distinctive skillsets are called Henchmen. Unlike a typical Minion, whose service may be dependent on employment or whim, a Henchman displays a high degree of loyalty; while they may still require payment in some form, a Henchman will not abandon the character they follow save for in extreme circumstances. Many Henchmen are even willing to risk their own life at a character's command, though this is not universally true. Assume that a Henchman is under the control of a player at all times and follows their character's orders dutifully, if not to the exact letter.

As they demonstrate a level of ability in excess of their peers, Henchmen are functionally and mechanically similar to characters. Despite this, Henchmen are not of the same caliber or destiny as player characters. They typically lack a certain something that separates them from major actors in the game: assets, connections, initiative, or vision. Even if a particularly potent Henchman surpasses their master in certain areas, they will always be less effective than a player character oriented toward that role.

Also important to note is that the power level of a game determines the difference between a Minion and a Henchman. For a group of acolytes in service to an Inquisitor, a suitable Henchman might be a street tough or servo-skull. By contrast, a Rogue Trader likely employs hundreds or thousands of Minions who surpass those acolytes' Henchmen in capability.

Acquiring Henchmen

Gaining a Henchman typically requires an Acquisition test or prolonged in-game effort, while retaining them may also involve paying their wages or operating costs.

Alternatively, the GM may decide that an NPC is assigned to a player character for one reason or another, such as being supplied combat support by a superior.

Regardless, it is left to the discretion of the GM whether the Henchman is customizable or comes with its abilities and talents predetermined.

Equipment

Like player characters, equipment can improve a Henchman's performance. However, they can never quite match a player character's potential.

As a general rule of thumb, if a Henchman would gain a similar benefit from two different pieces of equipment, only the stronger effect applies. If the question of superiority is unclear, the player decides which effect to use.

Wounds

To determine a Henchman's base Wounds total, take the tens digit of their Skill Rating and divide it by two, rounding up.

A Henchman that takes damage normally loses only a single Wound per hit. At the GM's discretion, particularly powerful weapons may remove multiple Wounds.

Templates

Templates represent a Henchman's basic attributes, providing a mixture of skills, talents, and traits. A Template should be chosen based on a Henchman's background.

Skills gained via Templates are at Rank 1 (Known). Henchmen with one or more ranks in a skill are also able to assist player characters with related tests.


Package Description
Eldar Mysterious, elusive, and rarely-seen xenos.
Gretchin Small, cunning, and cowardly xenos.
Ogryn Large, brutish, but loyal abhumans.
Ork Large, rowdy, and violent xenos.
Servitor A semi-autonomous fusion of man and machine.
Servo-Skull A machine spirit incorporated into a floating skull.

Eldar

The Eldar once held a mighty, galaxy-spanning empire long before the Emperor revealed himself to Mankind. That civilization is long gone, the fragments of their race now isolated and adrift.
Skills: Common Lore (Eldar), Linguistics (Eldar), [Pick Two]
Talents: Catfall, Exotic Weapon Training (Shuriken, Splinter), Weapon Training (Pick Two)
Traits: Dark-Sight or Unnatural Perception (1), Unnatural Agility (3)
Special: Gain the Skilled Ability for a Known skill. This does not count towards the normal Ability limit.

Gretchin

Though generally better shots and more intelligent than their larger cousins, Gretchin occupy one of the lowest ranks in the Greenskin social hierarchy.
Skills: Common Lore (Orks), Linguistics (Ork), [Pick Two]
Talents: Exotic Weapon Training (Ork), Weapon Training (Pick Two)
Traits: Make It Work, Size (Weedy)
Special: Gain the Proxy Ability. This does not count towards the normal Ability limit.

Human

This option allows one to design a Henchman that does not conform to one of the standard packages.
Skills: Linguistics (Low Gothic), [Pick Three]
Talents: Weapon Training (Pick Three)
Traits: None.
Special: Gain the Skilled Ability for any skill. This does not count towards the normal Ability limit.

Ogryn

Rarely-seen outside of their home worlds or the Imperial Guard, Ogryns are massive, burly abhumans with a reputation for being both intensely loyal and dumb as rocks.
Skills: Athletics, Intimidate, Linguistics (Low Gothic), [Pick One]
Talents: Bulging Biceps, Sound Constitution (3),Weapon Training (Heavy, Low-Tech, SP)
Traits: But It Dark in Dere!, Clumsy, Size (Hulking), Sturdy, Unnatural Strength (CSB)
Special: The Proxy ability has its penalty increased to to -20.

Ork

The Green Menace of the galaxy, Orks are huge, cheerfully violent, and violently cheerful. Some learn to redirect their more destructive tendencies to the benefit of employers.
Skills: Common Lore (Orks), Linguistics (Ork), [Pick Two]
Talents: Exotic Weapon Training (Ork), Sound Constitution (1), Weapon Training (Pick Two)
Traits: Make It Work, Size (Hulking) [Veteran/Elite], Sturdy, Unnatural Strength (CSB)
Special: The Gunner Ability instead gives Bulging Biceps and Weapon Training (Heavy).

Servitor

Common throughout the Imperium, servitors are lobotomized criminals or vat-grown bioforms, integrated with industrial cybernetics and programmed to fulfill a variety of functions.
Skills: [Pick Two]
Talents: None. Servitors can exchange their Talents by swapping out control wafers.
Traits: Dark Sight, Machine (CSB), Mind Lock, Sturdy, Unnatural Strength (2)
Special: The Gunner Ability also gives Auto-Stabilized and Weapon Training (Heavy).

Servo-Skull

Similar to servitors in both purpose and ubiquity, servo-skulls are the remains of favoured Imperial servants, infused with machine spirits and converted into hovering assistants.
Skills: [Pick One]
Talents: None. Servo-skulls can exchange their Talents by swapping out control wafers.
Traits: Dark Sight, Hover (6), Machine (CSB), Mind Lock, Size (Puny)
Special: Reduce base Wound total by 1. Cannot take the Gunner or Warrior Abilities.


Abilities and Talents

Abilities offer distinct mechanical benefits, either empowering the Henchmen or their master. Henchmen have a number of Abilities equal to their base Wounds total.

After selecting their Abilities, Henchmen also gain a number of additional Talents equal to their base Wounds total. Use CSR in place of characteristics for prerequisites.

The GM may restrict certain options if they are inappropriate for the Henchman's background.



Ability Benefits
Bulwark The Henchman acts as a living shield.
Caddy Swap weapons as a Free Action.
Gunner The Henchman can shoot at CSR.
Loader Reload using the Henchman's actions
Proxy Use a skill through the Henchman.
Skilled† The Henchman excels at a certain skill.
Spotter Aim using the Henchman's actions.
Warrior The Henchman can melee at CSR.

† Can be selected multiple times for different skills.

Bulwark

This Henchman is dedicated to protecting their master at any cost, up to and including their own life. While in Cohesion, their master can order this Henchman to protect them by spending its Full Action to stand guard. For the next Round, so long as they remain in Cohesion, the Henchman is struck by any attacks that would normally hit their master unless the attack rolls doubles.

Caddy

This Henchman carries all of their controlling player character's extra weapons with them, always on hand in the event they're needed. As long as this Henchman is in Cohesion, the player character may switch to any of their weapons as a Free Action. Additionally, the master adds this Henchman's CSR to their SB+TB for the purposes of determining their maximum carry weight.

Gunner

This Henchman has extensive experience with using ranged weapons, enabling them to better support their master in firefights. So long as they stay in Cohesion, the Henchman uses their full CSR for Ballistic Skill tests.

Loader

As long as this Henchman is in Cohesion, the controlling player character may use the Henchman's actions to reload their currently equipped weapon. These may be used in combination with the player character's actions.

Proxy

This Henchman has established a rapport with their master, sufficient that their controlling player character can relay complex commands for them to execute remotely. So long as they maintain communication, the player character can perform skill tests through the Henchman at a -10 penalty. These tests do not benefit from the master's equipment, but can benefit from the Henchman's.

Skilled

This Henchman is well-versed in this particular skill, capable of excellent work without need of supervision. Each time this Ability is selected, choose a different specialization. The Henchman gains three additional ranks in the selected skill, resulting in a bonus of +20 if initially untrained or +30 if initially at Rank 1 (Known). Henchmen with this Ability can perform Extended tests for their master.

Spotter

The Henchman carries magnoculars, infra-red targeters, and other tools to help line up the perfect shot. While using an Accurate weapon and in Cohesion with this Henchman, the player character may use the Henchman's actions to Aim and gain the benefits for themselves.

Warrior

This Henchman has extensive experience with using melee weapons, enabling them to better support their master in close-combat. So long as they stay in Cohesion, the Henchman uses their full CSR for Weapon Skill tests.


Henchmen in Combat

Cohesion

A Henchman is considered to be in Cohesion so long as it is within 5 meters of its master and not obstructed from reaching them. For example, a high wall would prevent cohesion, while the corner of a hallway would not.

Henchmen that start the Turn in Cohesion can spend a Half Action to follow if their master moves, ending up within 5 meters of the player character's final position. They need not make any tests to move, even if their master did.

At the GM's discretion, certain kinds of movement (such as flying) may require the Henchman to have similar capabilities in order to maintain Cohesion.

Special Effects

Henchmen in Cohesion do not take Fear tests, but pass or fail alongside their master unless independently immune. A failed Fear test causes Henchmen to flee from the source of their fear.

Henchmen in Cohesion do not take Pinning tests, but pass or fail alongside their master unless independently immune. A failed Pinning test forces Henchmen to seek the nearest cover.

Henchmen out of Cohesion automatically fail both Fear and Pinning tests unless benefiting from some form of immunity.

Henchmen take Corruption and Insanity as normal. The GM should use their best judgment to determine the effects of significant Corruption or Insanity on a Henchman.

Being Attacked

Henchmen in Cohesion are never directly targeted by enemies under normal circumstances. However, they can still be attacked, hurt, and even killed in the course of combat.

When a player character in Cohesion is hit by an attack that rolled doubles, one of their nearby Henchmen are hit instead1. If more than one Henchman is in Cohesion, randomly determine which is hit. Only the first hit of an attack strikes Henchmen, with the rest resolving against the master as normal. The player character can attempt an Evasion Reaction as normal, choosing whether to negate their hits before or after the Henchman's.

Weapons that hit multiple targets, such as those with the Blast and Spray Qualities, affect Minions in Cohesion normally. As above, a master that successfully tests to avoid the attack also saves any Henchmen in Cohesion.

Henchmen do not benefit from Force Fields or similar protections used by their master, unless the effect can apply to multiple creatures.

Henchmen benefit from cover as normal, and a Henchman with total cover is ineligible to take hits. Henchmen out of Cohesion can be attacked normally and cannot make their own Reactions.

Damage and Healing

Henchmen normally lose only a single Wound per hit. At the GM's discretion, particularly powerful weapons may cause them to lose multiple wounds.

First Aid has a reduced effect on Henchmen, restoring half the normal amount of Wounds. Any lingering injuries are recovered over time in the same manner as for player characters.

Henchmen missing half their Wounds are considered Heavily Wounded. Henchmen reduced to 0 Wounds are considered Critically Wounded, cannot Run, and die if they take further damage.

Actions in Combat

During an encounter, Henchmen act on their master's Initiative and can perform any actions that a player character could, unless otherwise stated.

By default, a Henchman makes both ranged and melee attacks at half their CSR, but can take Aim actions to improve their chances as normal.

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