Setting Overview


It is the 41st millennium. For more than a hundred centuries the Emperor has sat immobile on the Golden Throne of Earth. He is the master of mankind by the will of the gods, and master of a million worlds by the might of his inexhaustible armies. He is a rotting carcass writhing invisibly with power from the Dark Age of Technology. He is the Carrion Lord of the Imperium for whom a thousand souls are sacrificed every day, so that he may never truly die.

Yet even in his deathless state, the Emperor continues his eternal vigilance. Mighty battle fleets cross the daemon-invested miasma of the warp, the only route between distant stars, their way lit by the Astronomican, the psychic manifestation of the Emperor’s will. Vast armies give battle in His name on uncounted worlds. Greatest amongst his soldiers are the Adeptus Astartes, the Space marines, bio-engineered super-warriors. Their comrades in arms are legion: the Imperial Guard and countless planetary defense forces, the ever-vigilant Inquisition and the tech-priests of the Adeptus Mechanicus to name only a few. But for all their multitudes, they are barely enough to hold off the ever-present threat from aliens, heretics, mutants, and worse.

To be a man in such times is to be one amongst untold billions. It is to live in the cruelest and most bloody regime imaginable. Forget the power of technology and science, for so much has been forgotten, never to be relearned. Forget the promise of progress and understanding, for in the grim dark future there is only war. There is no peace amongst the stars, only in eternity of carnage, and slaughter and the laughter of thirsting gods.

Yet you are not just any individual—you are an Explorer on a Rogue Trader ship with authority and freedom far beyond the comprehension of the masses. Empowered by an ancient warrant of trade and a warp-capable ship, you will venture into the uncharted voids, discovering new worlds, lost civilizations, and bizarre alien technology. Fortune and glory are within reach. Rogue Traders stand on the threshold of unlimited opportunity and innumerable dangers.

Brief Key Points
  • Humanity is united under one God, the emperor of mankind who rules from the Golden Throne of Terra. Through his suffering are the demons of the void kept at bay
  • Faith and the cult of the emperor plays a massive part in the 40k universe, the Ecclesiarchy is the one uniting force on the millions of planets of the Imperium.
  • Holy icons and decorations are abundant, frescos of Imperial saints, icons of the imperial eagle, skulls and various other symbols with religious are pretty much the only decoration in some places and are used extensively on everything from guns to vehicles
  • Each planet has 3 duties, to turn over a planetary tithe (food, men) to turn over its psykers and to shun the enemies of mankind (heretics, mutants, aliens)
  • Demons lurk in the dark spaces of between the stars, fear them and despise those who would serve them
  • Those who do not fit the template for humanity are to be shunned, the human form is sacred. Burn the mutant!
  • Xenos seek only to enslave mankind; they subvert the holy technology of mankind and weaken his spirit. Cleanse them!
  • Beware the enemy within! Scorn the enemy without! Fear the enemy beyond!
  • Psykers are feared and treated with suspicion by all. With good reason, the warp is a realm of emotions and demons who feed off them. Psykers tap into this to use there powers and when something goes wrong the demons can come through the opening…
  • While a guardsman can field strip his lasgun in 30 seconds his weapon is beyond anything he is allowed to understand, he does not understand how the battery works, he doesn’t know the mysteries of electricity.
  • Technology is the preserve of the Tech Priests of Mars, the Adeptus Mechanicus. Only they can create or maintain machinery in any more than the most rudimentary form.
  • Machines are said to have spirits, the older and more complicated the machine is the more advanced its spirit is. A thousand year old power cable would be given the same status as an ancient holy relic of a saint.
  • Extensive use is made of humans as a basis of machines, brain wiped criminals are usually turned into borg-esque creations and turned into semi-living forklifts. Skulls are used to house probes and cameras and float around freely. Both are more common in the richer areas and less seen in poor quarters.

Setting Overview

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