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Tabletop Game / Inquisitor

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Witch Hunter Tyrus prepares to dispense some indiscriminate justice.

You have been told of the Inquisition; that shadowy organisation which defends Mankind and the Emperor from the perils of heresy, possession, alien dominance and rebellion.
You have been told the Inquisition are the ultimate defence against the phantoms of fear and terror which lurk in the darkness between the stars.
You have been told the Inquisition are the bright saviours in an eclipse of evil; purest and most devoted warriors of the Emperor.
You have been told the Inquisition is united in its cause to rid the galaxy of any threat, from without or within.
Everything you have been told is a lie!

A Gaiden Game set in the Warhammer 40,000 universe. Inquisitor focuses on the details of the Emperor's Most Holy Inquisition, specifically the ideological schisms and factional infighting that plague that organization, and the problems that arise when two loyal Imperial servants with unlimited authority have a disagreement with each other. It's notable for providing the first real insight into the workings of the Inquisition, which was portrayed in most previous materials as being monolithic, inscrutable, and united in the face of mankind's enemies.

Inquisitor is a "narrative wargame," designed more around telling stories than providing fair and balanced competition between two players, and in many ways could be considered the spiritual forefather to the first true 40k roleplaying game, Dark Heresy. It also served as the inspiration for the Eisenhorn series of novels by Dan Abnett. The game is also notable for its miniatures, which (at 54mm scale) are approximately twice as large as a normal 40k miniature, with a correspondingly increased level of detail. Although Games Workshop no longer actively supports Inquisitor, the spirit of the game lives on through a dedicated fan community, examples of whose work can be seen in the semi-regular "Blanchitsu" feature of Games Workshop's White Dwarf magazine.

See also Warhammer 40,000, Eisenhorn, and Ravenor.

The game provides examples of:

  • Arm Cannon: Characters can replace their hand with a bionic implant consisting of any basic or pistol type weapon. Having a hand replaced with a gun means that the character cannot be disarmed but limits some actions and, at the game master's discretion, can mean that the weapon cannot be reloaded during a battle.
  • Artificial Limbs: In keeping with the wider setting, bionic body parts are available for characters to purchase. The game gives the player the choice of quality for the replacement part (from Crude to Highly Advanced) with appropriate penalties and enhancements to characteristics dependent on how advanced the agametic is (a Crude bionic leg reduces movement by a yard for example while an Advanced bionic arm increases Strength and Armour).
  • Ascended Extra: A number of the example characters created for the game, such as the Inquisitors Eisenhorn and Covenant have gone on to have popular novel series written about them in the years since their release.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder:
    • The Power Fist used by Inquisitor Tyrusnote  is fitted with a retractable power knife that can be used as a punch dagger when the fanatical Inquisitor requires precision and speed over destructive power.
    • Characters can have a one-handed close combat weapon replace one of their hands as a bionic implant. Although this means that the character can never be disarmed, they are limited in making some actions due to the loss of their hand.
  • Blade Enthusiast: Characters with the Blademaster talent, such as the twin Death Cult Assassins Severina and Sevora, are masters of knife fighting, able to cause more damage with a knife than other characters can cause with a sword.
  • Blown Across the Room: One of the additional rules for the game is Knockback. When in use, every character has a Knockback value related to their Strength characteristic and if they get hit by an attack that does at least that much damage, they are knocked back a random distance. This rule is especially useful when attacking characters on high terrain.
  • Chunky Salsa Rule: The game's injury rules mean that if a body part suffers a crippling level of damage then that body part is seriously damaged and ceases to work, with crippling head damage resulting in instant death. In addition to this, every character keeps track of the total amount of Damage they suffer over the course of a game, known as an Injury Total, and if this total ever exceeds their Toughness characteristic then they die with no possibility of recovery.
  • Drop the Hammer: There are a number of hammer type weapons available for characters to use in the game, including basic hammers, great hammersnote  to the more technological power hammers. All such weapons deal a large amount of damage and have an increased chance of causing a Knockback with each hit.
  • Evil Is Deathly Cold: Some daemonic beings are surrounded by an aura of freezing cold, sometimes described as the chill of the void. In-game, one of the daemonic abilities available to creatures of the warp is 'Void-chill'. Warp entities with this ability are able to cause anyone attacking them to suffer from frostbite but suffer extra damage from heat-based weaponry.
  • Eye Beams: The miscellaneous psychic power 'Gaze of Death' allows the psyker to emit bolts of psychic energy from their eyes that does more damage than a frag grenade.
  • Gaiden Game: One of the Warhammer 40,000 Specialist Games, Inquisitor is a more RPG-style tabletop miniature game than many of the other Games Workshop spin-off games and explores the machinations and rivalries within the Imperial Inquisition. The larger scale of the models used in the game also makes it unique amongst Games Workshop's spin-off games.
  • Groin Attack: The groin is one of the targetable location on a character, complete with its own set of health levels, but it is one of the more difficult areas to hit. An attack that injures the groin has a high chance of leaving the character temporarily stunned from the pain, in addition to any other ill effects they may suffer such as blood loss or penalties to movement.
  • Guns Akimbo: The special ability Gunfighter enables a character to fire two pistol weapons simultaneously. Unless they're ambidextrous, though, it does confer an aiming penalty to the gun being used in the character's off-hand. This skill is especially poplar for Desperado characters such as the freelance gunslinger Lucius 'Slick' Devlan.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: All veteran Inquisitors run the risk of falling into this; Inquisitor Eisenhorn is the example given in the book.
  • Intangibility: The Instability Daemonology psychic power allows a psyker to partially enter warpspace so that they can pass through solid object, ignoring all terrain and other characters, but being unable to make any attacks. While in effect, the power also makes the psyker utterly immune to all normal attacks as they pass right through him. Only psychic abilities and weapons can harm a character using the instability power as such attacks effect both warpspace and the material realm.
  • Knight Templar: The Monodominant faction of the Inquisition and the Cult of the Red Redemption, represented by sample characters Inquisitor Tyrus and Devotee Malicant respectively.
  • Lightning Gun: The Xenarch death-arc is one of the more exotic alien weapons available to characters in the game. Produced by a mysterious race from the Northern Rim of the galaxy, the death-arc utilizes highly advanced charge cells and capacitors to fire multiple bursts of electrical energy, each of which hits as hard as a long rifle lasgun.
  • Lightning Lash: The Electro' Nine Tails, introduced at the same time as the Bosun Aberic Brawden model, is an electrified, multi-tailed whip intended to represent the harsh discipline common in Imperial Navy. In-game, the weapon does similar damage to a short sword but has a longer reach, is more difficult to parry and has a chance to stun its target.
  • Non-Human Sidekick: A few sample characters demonstrate how to include Xenos in your retinue. Official models available include a Tau Diplomat and a Bounty Hunter of some obscure alien species.
  • The Paralyzer: The Mesmerism Telepathic power allows a psyker to freeze a target so that they are unable to perform any action until they pass a Willpower test to break the effect.
  • Parrying Bullets: The 'Deflect Shot' talent allows a character to attempt to deflect any shots fired at them, as long as they are armed with either a power weapon (a melee weapon surrounded by a matter-disrupting energy field) or a force weapon (which is psychically linked to its wielder).
  • Purposely Overpowered: Space Marines to hilarious levels, to the point where the game recommends against using them unless you're willing to put a lot of work into counterbalancing the campaign.
  • Right Hand Versus Left Hand: While the concept of individual Inquisitors working against one another due to differences in their beliefs and strategies had long been theme in the novels and background for the setting, Inquisitor was the first game to explore the situation in depth and introduced many of the philosophies and concepts that form the basis for such conflicts.
  • Surveillance Drone: The game includes a specific class of Servo-Skull, the Hunter-skull, that is packed full of sensors, auspexes and other such devices to seek out and detect their owner's enemies. A Hunter-skull is linked directly to the owning character in in-game, the character is always aware of everything the skull is aware of.
  • Shoulder Cannon: The Mind Impulse Unit (MIU) allows a character to fire a gun without using their hands. Inquisitor Covenant is the most famous user of such equipment, linking the MIU to a shoulder-mounted Psycannon so that he can still fire the weapon while wielding his two-handed power sword.
  • Stupidity-Inducing Attack: Daemon weapons with the 'Brain Leach' Property have an unquenchable thirst for knowledge and will devour the mind of anyone they cut. The is represented in-game by models wounded by a 'Brain Leach' weapon suffering a penalty to their Sagacitynote  characteristic.
  • Subsystem Damage: Damage caused to a character is allocated to a random part of their body (although there are rules that alter the chance to hit various body parts or to aim at specific areas) with each body part having its own Damage Table with results that range from Light Damage (minor annoyances such as being stunned or falling over) to Crippled (ranging from going into system shock and being unable to do anything for the rest of the game, to outright death).
  • Sword Cane: The Inquisitor model for the famous Inquisitor Eisenhorn depicts his power sword as a sword cane, although rules wise it is no different to any other power sword.
  • Talking Is a Free Action: Averted during normal game-play: As with most actions, you must spend an action point to talk. You can only "say", per action, what you'd be able to say in 2-3 seconds in real life; lots of talking means more of actions spent. (For reference, most characters are allowed 3-4 actions per turn.) On the other hand, one may talk and perform another actions at the same time, albeit with a reduced chance of success for the other action. May be played with during what amounts to a Cutscene.
  • This Is a Drill: The sample Adeptus Mechanicus character, Magos Delphan Gruss, is armed with a special weapon known as a breacher. Originally designed for mining, the breacher is just as capable of boring through armour and flesh as it is rock and slag. In-game rules for the breacher represents its boring power by allowing it to ignore things such as cover and armour when it causes a critical hit.
  • Unconventional Alignment: The game's alignments (for the 'Inquisition' leader characters) are Puritan and Radical. Although it is a very grey area, Puritan generally refers to characters who refuse to use tactics or equipment tainted by Chaos or Xenos, while Radical factions will use techniques further on the edge. The backstory involves Inquisitorial factions that fight over the idea of resurrecting the Emperor. This is not good or evil, but merely the methods that they might use while being good or evil.