Which Origin Should You Choose In Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader?

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  • What Is A Character’s Origin In Warhammer 40k: Rogue Trader?
  • Astra Militarum Commander

Character creation in Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader is a fairly simple process of picking the traits you like best. However, each choice includes a lot of information, especially for new players. Once you’ve defined your appearance and selected a Homeworld, it’s time to pick your Origin.


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This is possibly the most important choice for building your character, since it determines important combat abilities and can never be changed. Whether you’re making your selection for roleplaying purposes or want to create a min-maxed build, read on to learn everything you need to know about Origins.


What Is A Character’s Origin In Warhammer 40k: Rogue Trader?

a statue of an Imperial Saint in Warhammer 40k: Rogue Trader

Every party member in the game has an Origin, which outlines what their life was like before they entered the service of the Von Valancius Dynasty. Your character, the Lord Captain, can choose from one of seven available Origins at the start of the campaign. Most of your recruitable companions will have one of these Origins as well, but a few unique individuals have Origins that are not available to the main character.

Think of your Origin as your character’s class, to borrow a term from more traditional fantasy RPGs.

Your Origin grants minor bonuses to two Characteristics and two Skills, as well as a combat ability. As your character levels up, you’ll be able to enhance that ability to further specialize it and make it more useful.

Astra Militarum Commander

Fearlessness And Firepower

the character creation screen in rogue trader with the astra militarum commander selected

Stat Boosts

Skill Boosts

  • Ballistic Skill +5
  • Perception +5
  • Athletics (STR) +5
  • Medicae (INT) +5

The Commander was once an officer in the Imperial Guard, leading thousands of troops and surviving planetwide battles. Their signature ability is Regimental Tactics, which can be used once per battle.

When activated, Regimental Tactics causes every ally to deal twenty percent more damage to any enemy that is adjacent to a friendly character. It also prevents allies from suffering friendly fire.

The damage bonus is increased by two percentage points for every ten Perception that the Commander has.

Regimental Tactics lasts until the Commander’s next turn, and can be used to rescue beleagured teammates from afar or to enhance damage in melee. It’s especially useful if your retinue contains several characters with the Warrior Archetype, or makes heavy use of area attacks and burst fire.

Commissar

Ruthless Leadership

the character creation screen in rogue trader showing the commissar

Stat Boosts

Skill Boosts

  • Weapon Skill +5
  • Fellowship +5
  • Coercion (FEL) +5
  • Athletics (STR) +5

Like the Commander, the Commissar once served in the Imperial military, but their role was maintaining discipline in the ranks. Commissars have a well-earned reputation for demanding perfection from the troops, and will not hesitate to shoot a fleeing soldier to keep the others in line.

The Commissar’s ability, At All Costs, can be used once per combat to enhance a single attack that they make. If the attack hits an enemy, then whichever ally kills that enemy gets an extra turn after doing so.

If the Commissar chooses instead to strike an ally with At All Costs, every member of the retinue gets one additional Action Point and three additional Movement on their next turn.

At All Costs only affects attacks that have a single target, so don’t try to use it with burst fire, sweep, or similar attacks.

Since the Commissar is slightly better in melee than at range, it’s best to equip them with a powerful close combat weapon but a weak sidearm like a laspistol. That way, you can give a nearby ally a quick zap that won’t deal too much damage, but still get the benefit of At All Costs.

Crime Lord

Insight And Adaptability

the character creation screen in rogue trader featuring the crime lord

Stat Boosts

Skill Boosts

  • Weapon Skill +5
  • Perception +5
  • Awareness (PER) +5
  • Logic (INT) +5

Whether they were a mostly-benevolent Robin Hood type or a heartless gangster, the Crime Lord spent much of their life violating Imperial law for their own ends. Evading the Imperium’s harsh justice requires quick thinking, which is where the Crime Lord’s Sure-Fire Plan ability comes in.

The Crime Lord can activate Sure-Fire Plan once per combat for every ten points of Intelligence they have. The next action that they take after using Sure-Fire Plan will have an additional effect:

  • Attacks deal ten percent more damage, plus an additional percentage point for every ten points of Perception the Crime Lord has.
  • Offensive abilities that don’t deal damage will inflict a ten-percent damage debuff to the target for one round, in addition to their normal effects. The debuff increases by one percentage point for every ten points of Intelligence the Crime Lord has.
  • If the Crime Lord moves, their Dodge and Parry chances increase by ten percent until their next turn. This bonus increases by one percentage point for every ten points of Perception the Crime Lord has.

Sure-Fire Plan gives the Crime Lord an edge in nearly any situation, but unlike many other Origin abilities, it does little to help allies. It’s also easy to forget, so use it often to make it a habit!

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Ministorum Priest

Righteous Fury

the character creation screen in rogue trader featuring the ministorum priest

Stat Boosts

Skill Boosts

  • Toughness +5
  • Willpower +5
  • Lore: Imperium (INT) +5
  • Medicae (INT) +5

The Imperium’s most zealous preachers will gladly go to war for their faith; Ministorum Priests can be found on battlefields across the galaxy, fighting on the front lines as well as ministering to common soldiers. Characters with this origin enjoy bonuses to their defensive characteristics, which is good because they’re at their best in the thick of fighting.

The Priest’s War Hymn ability increases the team’s Momentum once per battle, helping make a Heroic Act available sooner. The bonus is based on the Priest’s Willpower, and increases for each enemy that is within five spaces of the Priest or that was hit by one of the Priest’s attack on the same turn.

Equipping a Priest with a burst-fire weapon can help get more hits on foes further than five spaces away.

Protect Your Crew

the character creation screen in rogue trader featuring the navy officer

Stat Boosts

Skill Boosts

  • Commerce (FEL) +5
  • Demolition (AGI) +5

An Officer of the Imperial Navy has faced the terrors that lurk among the stars and lived to tell the tale. Their survival instincts and commanding presence help ensure that everyone makes it out of a battle in one piece.

The Officer’s ability, Brace For Impact, buffs all allies within three spaces to take two less damage from all attacks for one round. The buff increases as the Officer levels up and unlocks new Archetypes.

Whether you prefer an unbreakable melee line or to devastate your enemies from behind cover with gunfire, keeping your team close together is the best way to make use of Brace For Impact.

Noble

Buddy System

the character creation screen in rogue trader, featuring the noble

Stat Boosts

Skill Boosts

  • Intelligence +5
  • Fellowship +5
  • Coercion (FEL) +5
  • Persuasion (FEL) +5

Nobles are used to being in charge, and they expect obedience and efficiency from their lessers – which includes just about everyone. Each battle, the Noble can use You Serve Me designate one companion to be their servant. For the remainder of the fight, the servant gets an increased critical hit chance against enemies that the Noble hit on their last turn. They also got +5 to all Characteristics for one round when the Noble targets them with an ability.

If the servant falls in battle, you can’t choose another one! Choose early to get the most out of You Serve Me, but choose wisely.

The Noble also has excellent social skills, which can help open up useful dialogue options.

Sanctioned Psyker

Power At A Price

the character creation screen in rogue trader, featuring the sanctioned psyker

Stat Boosts

Skill Boosts

  • Toughness +5
  • Willpower +5
  • Lore: Warp (INT) +5
  • Carouse (TGH) +5

Psykers command incredible sorcery, but at a risk to their mind, their life, and their soul. A Sanctioned Psyker has been deemed competent and stable enough to serve the Imperium, but even the most skilled Psyker can cause unintended effects with their powers.

Psykers can choose one Psychic Discipline at character creation, and can learn more as the game progresses. Alternately, they can focus on their main Discipline and master it at the expense of all others. Every Psyker has a Psy Rating from zero to four; the higher it is, the more powers they can access and the more potent they will be. The Disciplines that you can choose are:

  • Biomancy: Manipulation of living matter, enhancing your allies and withering your enemies, even going so far as to steal their life essence.
  • Divination: Predicting the future and nudging it toward a desired outcome, Divination helps you increase your allies’ chances of success while hampering your foes’.
  • Pyromancy: Channeling Warp energy into raw heat and flame, Pyromancy is second to none when it comes to destructive power.
  • Sanctic Power: Though Psykers are considered unclean by Imperial dogma, Sanctic Psykers use their sorcery to pray for the Emperor’s blessings, buffing allies and debuffing enemies.
  • Telepathy: Reading and infiltrating minds, Telepaths specialize in damage and debuffs.

Idira, one of your initial companions, and Heinrix, who joins early in the game, are both Psykers. Idira is a Diviner and Telepath, while Heinrix is a Biomancer. If you choose Pyromancy or Sanctic Power, you won’t overlap with any of their existing Disciplines.

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