The idea of a (or more precisely: the word) Tech-Witch fascinates me. Machinery fueled by the powers of the warp, daemonic beings taking over servitors or cogitators and numerical formula wielded like arcane spells. Especially the hints about Ammicus Tole and his works revealed in FFG´s “Creatures Anathema”[DH1st] were something I hoped to see more off in the future.
Over the coming days, I will publish a small series of articles about tech-witchery that will feature different Maletek rituals to be used against or by acolytes in a game of DarkHeresy. All of them were initially published by me for the first edition of DH at a fan-website called “DarkReign40K” and later at the FFG forum. The re-pulished material will be re-written for the second edition of DarkHeresy. And today, I start with….
The Nonumerical Cant (Maletek Talent)
The Tech-Witch puts her knowledge of the Warp and the mystic meanings of numbers to use and recites rows of numbers in a strange singsong. Higher machine-spirits and those whose minds were touched and blessed by the Omnissiah are tormented by this cant and hindered in their function.
Prerequisites: Scholastic Lore (Numerology) and Scholastic Lore (Occult)
Aptitudes: Intelligence, Knowledge
Effect: To begin the recitation takes a full action and the Tech-Witch must pass a test for Scholastic Lore (Numerology)(+0). If the test is successful, the cant is intoned correctly and the Tech-Witch must role a d10. If the result is higher then her Corruption Bonus, she will gain a point of Corruption (but only once per scene the Cant is used in).
While the Cant is intoned (full action to begin, half action per turn to keep it up), every present machine with a higher machine spirit (like Servitors, Servo-Skulls, automated weapon systems and everything else with own stats & skills) suffers a -20 penalty to all tests. Tech-Priests and characters with a Logis Implant or those with a Machine Trait (3+ or GM´s fiat) are affected as well but are entitled to a Willpower(+0) test (as a free action) at the beginning of their turn. If successful, the penalty is reduced to (-10).
In addition to being spoken, the Cant can be broadcast by Vox, and the majority of servitors do receive vox transmissions. It can even be used via binary chat (see Talent “Binary Chatter”) .