“Every morning a longhorn wakes up. It knows it must outrun the fastest panthera or it will be killed. Every morning a panthera wakes up. It knows it must outrun the slowest longhorn or it will starve to death. It doesn’t matter whether you are a longhorn or a panthera. When the sun comes up, you better start running.”
Brimstone is hot, dry and unforgiving - a place where Hell itself bubbles up from beneath blistering sands and legendary beasts walk the earth. A place where mankind has found himself at the losing end of an evolutionary arms race of thick hides, powerful jaws, piercing talons and mighty hooves. A place where only one thing keeps the sun-scorched clans of Thole placing one foot in front of the other; the indomitable spirit of Man.
Life on Brimstone Edit
The majority of the planet is swaddled in beautiful savannas, oceans of grass and arid plains, with hazardous craggy polar regions and deadly equatorial wastelands. High gravity and long days have sculpted the local flora and fauna into a kingdom of grand and awesome beings, such as the eagles of the Great Plains that can crush a guncutter in its talons or the solitary Mammotherous, gargantuan enough to carry a whole community of clansmen on its back.
Even the Thole, meaning ‘to endure’ in local parlance, have adapted to this pressure cooker of natural selection. They grow lean and sinewy as the healthy oxygen levels pull them upwards, yet broad and stocky as the higher gravity pulls them down, creating tough survival experts with unmatched levels of physical endurance. Their feet are wide and calloused, better suited to crossing the shifting sands, and powerful hearts pump hyper-oxygenated blood around their bodies to take advantage of the most terrifying human weapon - persistence.
Brimstone is a cannonarchy operated by a ruling elite, entrenched deeply into the Shouting Mountains like maggots in a calcified apple. They are the handful that know Brimstone’s true place in the universe - that the Star Eagles that bring judgement every seven years and pick only the worthy to fight in His name are no more than Imperial tithes being collected. They keep a physically fit population in order with technological supremacy and religious dogma, keeping the poor in the dark and making the rich richer.
Fuel and Faith Edit
Besides people, the most tightly-controlled export is blocks of raw, waxy promethium. Stable until refined, the curious combination of gravity, pressure and natural resources causes the much-needed fuel source to compress into a near-solid state and bubble through the crust of the planet at locations called fuel mires. Only cheap and simple tools are needed to cut and shape the promethium into manageable loads, so the fuel conglomerates can ship the unrefined promethium blocks, or ‘brimethium’, at a fearsome profit.
With both the monarchy and their investors looking to maintain power over an ignorant population and the Administratum pleased with the bountiful tithes, the likelihood of a Thole clansman ever knowing of life beyond Brimstone is slim indeed. Only those with the skills, fortitude and luck ever make it off-world, but those that do are powerful tools in the hands of the right masters. Bombs and bullets are only useful until they run out - the ultimate weapon is infinite and unrelenting, bendable but unbreakable; the will of Man to endure.
Brimstone PCs Edit
People from Brimstone are known as the Thole and are natural survivors, hardened by the sun and fueled by an implacable will to endure. They are stoic and hardworking, taking great care in even the smallest task. They know the sun will rise the next day, so can persevere at a single activity for days or weeks until they are satisfied. However, a Thole travelling and adventuring amongst the stars would make them an exceptional individual amongst already exceptional people.
Creating Dark Heresy PCs from Brimstone Edit
In order to create characters from Brimstone, use the Feral World template but replace the Iron Stomach and Rite of Passage traits with those described here.
The Tireless Thole Edit
Countless generations of life in the baking Savannas breeds unmatched stamina and resilience to heat, making Thole warriors some of the most sought-after trackers and scouts in the sector.
Benefit: The character is immune to any detrimental effects brought on by hot or dry conditions. In addition, the penalty for having Fatigue is only -5 per point instead of -10.
Mind Bared to Him Edit
Whatever corner of the planet you come from, all the clans follow the same teachings of the Prophets, laid down thousands of years ago when Brimstone was recolonised. The Emperor looks into every soul's mind with his thousand eyes to see if they are found wanting, so every soul keeps their head naked and at least a portion of their scalp shaved at all times to prove their purity.
Penalty: If they cannot observe these spiritual needs (or wear a hat), they are at -10 Wp until they can.
Greatness From Greatness Edit
Although there are dozens (if not hundreds) of clans on Brimstone, a handful possess additional skills that would be useful to an off-world Inquisitor. Pick one clan from the list below, gain the listed Talents or Skills, as well as the Speak Language (relevant clan) skill.
1. Broken Feather Clan Edit
Wicked and cruel clansmen from the polar mountains. They capture, break and rear Great Plains eagles to use as weapons of war, although they end up being smaller twisted creatures - a far cry from the noble birds they were bred from.
Benefit: Start with the Wrangling skill and D5 Corruption Points
2. Open Skull Clan Edit
The most learned and respected of the great clans as they use their skills to prepare the dead for their passage into the afterlife.
Benefit: Start with the Trade (Embalmer) skill and treat Medicae as a basic skill
3. Painted Pelt Clan Edit
Hunters and traders, this great clan specialise in creating use for every conceivable part of a slain animal, producing incredible works of art from the most meagre of specimens.
Benefit: Start with the Trade (Scrimshawer) and Trade (Tanner) skills