Cubicle 7’s new Warhammer 40k RPG Imperium Maledictum released on Thursday, and senior producer Padraig Murphy says there’s plenty more material coming down the pipe for the game. We interviewed Murphy about the grim and treacherous new Warhammer 40k RPG, and he revealed what we can expect from expansions and supplements.
The core Imperium Maledictum rulebook allows you to create characters from eight different factions within the Imperium of Man. According to Murphy, expansions will each explore one faction in great detail. An expansion focused on the Inquisition, the shadowy operatives who protect the Imperium from deadly threats like mutants, heretics, psykers – and other Inquisitors – is already “really far into production”.
Faction supplements for Imperium Maledictum will be released as pairs of books , with a player-facing supplement book full of character creation options, and another that’s more tailored towards GMs. These will be on sale separately, or together in a deluxe slipcase edition. The player books will contain “new equipment, new roles for your characters to take on… new psychic powers, that kind of stuff”.
The Game Master books will add new systems tailored to suit campaigns focusing on one particular organisation. By way of example, Murphy says that there will be rules to support “Inquisitorial campaigns taking place over years” of in-game time, reflecting the years-long, sprawling investigations found in Warhammer 40k books like the Eisenhorn trilogy.
“One of the things you might do is go on a long-term endeavour to infiltrate a Tzeentchian cult. So, your characters have a downtime that lasts a year, and at the end of it you’re there with your tattoos and a bunch of seals on you to help ward off the corruption you’ve picked up, and a bit of a purple twinkle in your eye.”
Unlike the older Fantasy Flight Games Warhammer 40k RPGs, which used subtly different versions of the same core rules, all the expansions for Imperium Maledictum will be fully cross-compatible. Murphy says “You could be playing an Inquisition game and play a Tech Priest, and [suppose] you have an Adeptus Mechanicus player guide that lets you create an even more detailed Tech Priest with even weirder augmentics, that’ll fit right in.”
Murphy can’t tell us exactly which faction will come after the Inquisition, except that the first Warhammer 40k faction in the lineup has appeared in a roleplaying game before, but never starred in one. If you want to try and work out what the options are, you can pick up the March 2023 Humble Bundle, which has the complete product line and all expansions for four of the previous Warhammer 40k RPGs. We’re hoping for the tech priests of the Adeptus Mechanicus, after we fell in love with them in their eponymous XCOM like turn-based strategy game.
The supplement after that will be from a faction that has previously starred in its own Warhammer 40k RPG before. As Imperium Maledictum is focused on low-level, gritty play, and is apparently focused just on (more or less) loyalist characters, that rules out the superhuman Space Marines of the Deathwatch and the Chaos factions of Black Crusade. That leaves the starfaring Rogue Traders or the lowly infantry of the Astra Militarum.
The Imperium Maledictum core rulebook is available in PDF form from the Cubicle 7 Website, and comes free if you pre-order the hardbound edition, which the publisher Cubicle 7 says will ship in Q4 2023. Likewise, the Gamemaster’s screen is available for pre-order now if you want to combine shipping.
The screen is accompanied by a 36 page booklet “filled with tables and generators to enhance your sessions and provide inspiration for future investigations”, according to a blog published on Monday by Cubicle 7. In our interview, Murphy mentions one table that allows the GM to quickly work out “what the [Astra Militarum] Commissar finds wrong with your uniform”.
Cubicle 7’s blog also reveals a starter set with six pregenerated characters, handouts, dice, and two books. One book’s an adventure in which a “purported miracle has drawn the characters to a toxic hiveworld packed with duplicitous figures”, while the other is a 64-page guidebook to Rokarth, the aforementioned hive planet.