Expanding Your Grimdark Adventures In Warhammer 40,000: Wrath & Glory

March 1, 2022 by brennon

Last week, I dived into Warhammer 40,000: Wrath & Glory and talked about what I thought of the core rules. This week, I'm going to be exploring how you can expand your roleplaying adventures in the grimdark future alongside Cubicle 7.

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There are a host of books available for you to dive into but we're going to start with the one that helps to really expand the Gilead System where Wrath & Glory takes place.

Forsaken System Player's Guide

The Forsaken System Player's Guide solves one of the issues that I found with the core rulebook. Gilead was introduced nicely, sure, but it would have been good to have a few more options thrown into the mix, especially for newcomers to the grimdark of Warhammer 40,000. It can be quite daunting to come face-to-face with the grimdark universe of Warhammer 40,000 and so some extra background is always welcome!

Forsaken System Players Guide - Wrath & Glory

Inside the Forsaken System Player's Guide, you'll find a whole host of new options for players and Gamemasters. For Gamemasters (and players to a degree), there is a breakdown of the different worlds that you can explore when heading to The Gilead System. Each of the planets is well-detailed and features an Adventure Hook that might aid you when coming up with an interesting story to tell at the tabletop.

This is then matched by a breakdown of the various factions that exist within The Gilead System. There is a good mix of different factions represented here for the Imperium (as you might have imagined) but there are also plenty of Xenos options too. The Craftworlders Of Ul Khari have been represented here for Aeldari fans alongside Da Blood Axes if you fancy hanging out with the Orks! There is even a section given over to the Traitors Of The Rift and the Chaos powers.

What is also nice is that this section of the book is also given over to explaining the links between these different factions and how they view each other. It's, again, a fantastic option for those who are looking for some good adventure hooks to use in Wrath & Glory. Linked to that, there is also a neat breakdown of the Patrons that could guide your players through their tales. There are a couple of sample mission ideas but also reasoning behind why they might call on the players.

Talking of the players, the Forsaken System Player's Guide also offers loads of new options to choose from when it comes to Archetypes! The focus here is on a lot of the new Sisters Of Battle that got added with their latest Codex for Warhammer 40,000 but there is also a fair amount of time given over to the Abhumans of the Imperium. Want to play a Ratling? They have you sorted! You could be a mighty Ogryn. There are also some good options here for Space Marine players including Chaplains, Librarians and an Apothecary. My favourite though is the addition of the Kroot Mercenary to proceedings. It's great to see Cubicle 7's team branching out and making it easier to dive in and play as something a little bit more esoteric!

All of these new Archetypes also come with extra weapon rules, equipment, bionics and more. Everything that you could need for the aforementioned Archetypes has been bundled in here.

Finally, there is also a section given over to Endeavours which can be used for moments in-between adventures. These are handy and offer up ways for the player and the Gamemaster to continue to tell the story when everyone is away from the tabletop. I like these in particular as they help to flesh out the story and get you thinking about potential story hooks for your next adventure.

So, is the Forsaken System Player's Guide worth picking up. I would say a hard yes. There is a lot in here which is great for the Gamemaster in your group and having more player options is never a bad thing. I think the most useful part of this book is the guide to The Gilead System and its factions. This is where the authenticity of your campaign will come from and offer up plenty for your players to get stuck into. You better get reading!

Litanies Of The Lost

Next up, we're doing to dive into some options for those who might not have had the time to write their own adventures. Litanies Of The Lost is a collection of four adventures that take you deep into the goings-on within The Gilead System.

Litanies Of The Lost - Wrath & Glory

The first of these is Grim Harvest which focuses on investigations and sleuthing with a little bit of a twist. This is followed by Vow Of Silence which changes things up and has players diving into a stealth-based adventure. The third of the adventures is Dark Bidding which again introduces an element of investigation and deduction but with a stronger focus on roleplaying encounters. The final adventure is Duty Beyond Death and has the players diving into a story packed with combat and exploration. In this one though, the setting of a Servitor Manufactorum keeps things interesting!

All of these adventures can be played separately if you like but there is also a section in the book (at the end of each part) given over to tying all of these narratives together. This means that you can then surprise your players with all sorts of interesting reveals! There's nothing wrong with keeping things feeling distinctly episodic but I do like the idea of having an overarching narrative playing out throughout your games. If you can get moments where the players go "oh my god!" then that's something pretty special.

I'm not going to dive too deep into this one as I'd like people to explore things themselves. But, I would say that having Litanies Of The Lost out there as a starting point for those Gamemasters who can't/don't have the time to write their own adventures is a must. Not every group is going to get something out of this like the Forsaken System Player's Guide but it could be handy to have in the back pocket.

Redacted Records

Oh my, Redacted Records is a lot of fun. One of the nice things about this particular book is that it is an awesome sandbox. The big draw of this book is the fact that it can be used to generate and run adventures set within your own Space Hulks!

Redacted Records - Wrath & Glory

Want to play out a classic fight against Genestealers in the bowels of some ruined Space Hulk? This book has you sorted! Want to change things up and explore different factions, foes and more? Done! There are dozens of tables allowing you to generate various locations plus they have also included a bunch of tables, specific to each Tier of player, that evokes the atmosphere of walking around inside a monolithic graveyard floating through the depths of space. Don't have time to start generating one? Cool. The book also comes with five sample Space Hulks from The Gilead System for you to dive into.

In addition to that, the sandbox ideas don't stop there. There is a section entirely given over to creating your own Frameworks. These are used as guides for the likes of Patrons, Factions and Tiers. Want to make a game specifically designed around the Adeptus Ministorum? They have a section dedicated to that.

Players will also find a pretty jam-packed set of new Talents for you to dive into, opening up new options to players (and those big foes you want to put them against!). There is also a big section dedicated to the different Cults that have arisen within The Gilead System.

Redacted Records is there for the Wrath & Glory group that has chosen this roleplaying game as their system. It shouldn't be your first port of call when playing Wrath & Glory after the core rulebook but it is there for when you need some new ideas or fancy doing something a little different. I could see this being a good book to snap up when you've just finished one of the big adventures from Litanies Of The Lost. Get Redacted Records and use the Space Hulk rules to make a fun side mission sent by the group's Patron!

Church Of Steel

Phew, quite a lot to think about already right? Well, there is one more big book I want to dive into. Church Of Steel is the most recent book from Cubicle 7 and the one that I have, unfortunately, spent the least amount of time with. But, it feels like a solid option alongside The Forsaken System Player's Guide for people diving into Wrath & Glory.

Church Of Steel - Wrath & Glory

Church Of Steel does, as you might have guessed, exactly what it says on the ceramite tin. It is packed with background detail and rules for introducing vehicles into your games of Wrath & Glory. For those focusing in on Imperium-based campaigns, there is a lot given over to exploring the Adeptus Mechanicus and their devotion to these blessed machines. You'll also find rules for loads of different vehicles like Chimera, Leman Russ Battle Tanks and Sentinels.

But, the Xenos forces are not to be left out. There are rules for vehicles belonging to the Aeldari, Orks, Necrons, Drukhari and more. Each of these sections is well-detailed and even includes explorations of exactly how each of these factions views the use of their vehicles. Some of them are just as dedicated to their craft as the Adeptus Mechanicus of the Imperium! Oh, and there are expanded rules for proper vehicular combat! Of course, they have included the rules for using all of these in actual engagements!

One section of the book that I particularly enjoyed though was the Travel section. Journeys are always interesting in roleplaying games as they can sometimes be derailing, boring or over in a flash. The different tables that you can roll on here help to add that little bit of spice to your endeavours without feeling like they derail things entirely. The tables are also broken up to cover different environments as well. Want to explore a wasteland, they have you covered! Much like with Endeavours, they could even plant the seeds for future stories in your games.

As I mentioned, I think that Church Of Steel could be a solid option for a group to pick up early on. Wait until you've got a handle on the basic rules and then perhaps consider picking this up. The travel rules and extra details on new wargear and such could be very handy for those looking to "go beyond" the core rules. But, they aren't so much that you'll feel like you overwhelm your players.

Adventures For New Groups

As I mentioned in the initial review, there are some good options for those just getting started. If you have the core rules, maybe consider picking up Rain Of Mercy or The Graveyard Shift as both of these starter adventures are free.

Rain Of Mercy - Wrath & Glory

Rain Of Mercy is quite short but has been designed to play out in a single session. It is very much a primer for Wrath & Glory and the world of Warhammer 40,000. To that end, it might not work for experienced roleplayers but it could be adapted. If you are entirely new to roleplaying games though then Rain Of Mercy is neat. It features slimmed-down mechanics to ease the process of diving in.

The Graveyard Shift is a much bigger adventure and dispenses with the slimmed-down mechanics in favour of a full-blown Wrath & Glory experience.

Graveyard Shift - Wrath & Glory

This one is really fun! It manages to hit all of the notes of a Wrath & Glory campaign including combat, intrigue and exploration. It is also set on a world dominated by skyscraper-sized mausoleums which should really key everyone into the themes and aesthetic of Warhammer 40,000 if they weren't already familiar.

If you want to pay for an adventure then I would also recommend the unfolding narrative of the battle for Tora Armis. This story starts with Bloody Gates where you play as penal legion soldiers in a Tier One adventure that lasts two or three sessions.

Bloody Gates - Wrath & Glory

Bloody Gates start a linked series of stories that then expands in On The Wings Of Valkyries followed by Lord Of The Spire and Affliction Ascendant. Each of these missions ticks up through the tiers of play so you can almost use this as a way to test out which kind of campaign your group wants to play. It's also awesome that you take on the role of characters that, whilst you can get attached to, might end up dying in some rather spectacular ways.

So, Where To Start?

With all of this in mind, where should you start? If I was diving into Wrath & Glory for the first time I'd take this path. Get the Core Rulebook and perhaps (if you have the means to do so) get your hands on The Forsaken System Player's Guide. These act as a really good staging ground for your campaigns.

Play out Rain Of Mercy if you're VERY new firstly but if you're comfortable with tabletop roleplaying games, download The Graveyard Shift next. From there I'd consider perhaps playing through the story that begins with Bloody Gates or use the Forsaken System book to start telling your own stories.

Beyond that, Church Of Steel offers up some great options for players and Gamemasters (travel, gear, background) and then consider Litanies Of The Lost. These aren't essential purchases but they could be very handy for those who want to save some time. Redacted Records slides in next as an additional purchase if you're feeling fancy!

As I hope you can see, there is a lot here from Cubicle 7 that has been designed to get you comfortable with roleplaying in the grimdark of Warhammer 40,000. There might not be a Starter Set (yet!) but hopefully, you'll have found this useful as a guide to going beyond the Core Rules.

What adventures have you told using Wrath & Glory?

"If you have the core rules, maybe consider picking up Rain Of Mercy or The Graveyard Shift as both of these starter adventures are free..."

"As I hope you can see, there is a lot here from Cubicle 7 that has been designed to get you comfortable with roleplaying in the grimdark of Warhammer 40,000..."

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