The Final Installment of The Enemy Within is out!

TheSword

Legend
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Three years ago Cubicle 7 announced the re-release of the 30 year old classic campaign for Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay, The Enemy Within. One of the most lauded campaigns in TTRPG.


The recent fourth installment, The Horned Rat, was a completely new adventure and a very good one too. The final chapter, Empire in Ruins, is a re-write again, but a substantial one, bringing together all the lose ends for the campaign and linking back in a satisfying way to its roots at the beginning of the campaign. It feels as epic as the series is and convincingly has the PCs rubbing shoulders with revolutionary partisans, secret societies, mount prospectors and even the Emperor himself.

What I like particularly about this series is how well it’s stood the test of time. It doesn’t feel dated or stale. It’s packed full of great locations and fun NPCs largely without the awkwardness subjects Masks of Nyarlathotep. It also manages to do a great jobs of walking a fine line between being epic but also personal. I love the skill involved in making that convincing.

One of the criticisms was that it could be a bit linear, though now we see the full picture finally it’s clear that there are multiple ways a DM could run the PCs though the campaign and multiple endings are possible. Success in WFRP is never guaranteed but the game keeps adjusting and going.

The game would not be a great chore to adapt to D&D rules I think with a set of players interested in sticking to a theme. I’m myself ran the 1st episode in Pathfinder 1e and 5e would be an easier conversion I think.

Anyway, if you want to see the WFRP equivalent of Masks of Nyarlathotep, Rappan Athuk, or Rise of the Runelords/Curse of the Crimson Throne, check it out.
 
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Retreater

Legend
Looking forward to completing the collection (and also getting the Companion). Don't know if I'll ever get a chance to run it, but it's good reading for inspiration and the art is amazing.
 

TheSword

Legend
Looking forward to completing the collection (and also getting the Companion). Don't know if I'll ever get a chance to run it, but it's good reading for inspiration and the art is amazing.
Based on our previous conversations I definitely recommend you convert to 5e. I think you’d easily find a group of willing players for it. Run it for levels 1-13.
 

Retreater

Legend
Based on our previous conversations I definitely recommend you convert to 5e. I think you’d easily find a group of willing players for it. Run it for levels 1-13.
I have saved the conversion guidelines and have them on my computer, ready to start the process if I can ever get a group together who would be interested. It's been very helpful.
 



Urriak Uruk

Gaming is fun, and fun is for everyone
Hi everyone! I'm curious if anyone has an actual review of this? I've seen extensive reviews for the previous 4 parts, but nothing really for this part... been an absence of any talk really about it at all.

Anyway, I'd appreciate any comments on it, as I know this campaign has gone through several iterations over the years, and I'm very curious how this adventure ties it all up. Especially as Part 4 is nearly completely original now.
 

Retreater

Legend
Hi everyone! I'm curious if anyone has an actual review of this? I've seen extensive reviews for the previous 4 parts, but nothing really for this part... been an absence of any talk really about it at all.

Anyway, I'd appreciate any comments on it, as I know this campaign has gone through several iterations over the years, and I'm very curious how this adventure ties it all up. Especially as Part 4 is nearly completely original now.
I have the PDFs of this and the companion if you have specific questions I can answer. Sadly I'm new to this campaign and can't compare/contrast with previous editions. And thus far have only GMed the first two chapters of Book 1.
 

Urriak Uruk

Gaming is fun, and fun is for everyone
I have the PDFs of this and the companion if you have specific questions I can answer. Sadly I'm new to this campaign and can't compare/contrast with previous editions. And thus far have only GMed the first two chapters of Book 1.

Ok, so this newest version of the campaign is to my knowledge trying to redo the original adventure's conception as close as possible, while also updating it so that it still fits in with the most recent edition of Warhammer Fantasy Battle.

So the first three parts are nearly the same, though updated to be better organized. Part 4 is almost completely original, as the 1st edition's part 4 "Something Rotten in Kislev" wasn't originally written with the campaign in mind. "The Horned Rat" is written to be an expansion of the original planned module, which involved Skaven trying to blow up or teleport to the moon, and this new module does a good job of exploring that.

However, the last part is the most interesting, as the original "Empire in Flames" would end the Empire in a very different place as to how Warhammer Fantasy Battle starts (this campaign is supposed to prelude it). The general timeline;

  • The Emperor Karl Franz, and his wife to be (Princess of Middenheim) are killed in an assassination attempt.
  • The Crown Prince fails to be elected the new Emperor, is revealed as a mutant, and kills Boris Todbringer (before being killed himself).
  • The PC are recruited to find the mythical hammer Ghal Maraz before the Empire descends into civil war.
  • PCs go on a series of missions through the mountains before finding and returning the hammer, as the Empire's civil war begins.
  • The PCs return the hammer on the eve of a climactic battle, and civil war is averted.
  • When the new emperor is about to be crowned (I forget this fellow's name), Ghal Maraz attacks the Grand Theologist, revealed to be possessed by a demon.
  • PCs fight demon, save the day and the campaign concludes.

Now, as fun as that all is, I highly doubt that the new Empire in Ruins goes about the events like that! There is of course the entirely new plotline of the Skaven to resolve, a new mastermind behind these events, how Karl Franz probably needs to survive all of this (and Boris Todbringer too), plus rumors of a Greenskin invasion to the south.

So I'm very curious how the new campaign compares to the old, whether it hews very close, goes in a completely new direction, or something in-between.
 

Retreater

Legend
Ok, so this newest version of the campaign is to my knowledge trying to redo the original adventure's conception as close as possible, while also updating it so that it still fits in with the most recent edition of Warhammer Fantasy Battle.
Warhammer Fantasy Battle is dead, right? It was replaced by Age of Sigmar, which now has its own RPG. I don't think there is any connection between WFRP and AoS - two separate lines, from what I can tell.
Now, as fun as that all is, I highly doubt that the new Empire in Ruins goes about the events like that!
Nope. That's all laid out as a possibility in the new revision, depending on player action.

Again, I haven't run it yet and have no knowledge of the previous edition, but everything you described sounds like possibilities of how it could end.
 

Urriak Uruk

Gaming is fun, and fun is for everyone
Warhammer Fantasy Battle is dead, right? It was replaced by Age of Sigmar, which now has its own RPG. I don't think there is any connection between WFRP and AoS - two separate lines, from what I can tell.

They are, but on blogs/interviews I've read, it sounds like the authors of the new Empire in Ruins want the campaign to end at the point where Warhammer Fantasy Battle 8th Edition begins; with Emperor Karl Franz on the throne, in his prime. AoS doesn't have anything to do with that (it's further in the future, as 8th Edition flows into the End Times, which becomes Age of Sigmar).

Nope. That's all laid out as a possibility in the new revision, depending on player action.

Again, I haven't run it yet and have no knowledge of the previous edition, but everything you described sounds like possibilities of how it could end.

Sorry, are you saying that the bullets I laid out are how the events are described in the new book? I'm not talking about the alternative versions in the Grognard boxes, I'm referring to the default assumptions the book is thinking the PCs take.
 

Retreater

Legend
They are, but on blogs/interviews I've read, it sounds like the authors of the new Empire in Ruins want the campaign to end at the point where Warhammer Fantasy Battle 8th Edition begins; with Emperor Karl Franz on the throne, in his prime. AoS doesn't have anything to do with that (it's further in the future, as 8th Edition flows into the End Times, which becomes Age of Sigmar).
Warhammer Fantasy Battle 8th edition no longer exists, so I was just responding to that.
I guess they can say that is the intent in blogs or whatever, but the adventure gives no indication of that. In fact, some of the things in the old wargame have already happened in the past of the campaign world (Von Carstein, Grom the Paunch, etc.)
I heard their next focus was going to be products outside the Empire, but we'll just have to see.

Going through point-by-point, but putting it in spoiler tags.


Sorry, are you saying that the bullets I laid out are how the events are described in the new book? I'm not talking about the alternative versions in the Grognard boxes, I'm referring to the default assumptions the book is thinking the PCs take.
The Emperor Karl Franz, and his wife to be (Princess of Middenheim) are killed in an assassination attempt.

More likely to be killed by the demon, but unlikely to survive unless the PCs are very lucky.
The Crown Prince fails to be elected the new Emperor, is revealed as a mutant, and kills Boris Todbringer (before being killed himself).
100%. The Crown Prince becomes a demon and starts killing everyone. And I doubt anyone can stop him.
  • The PC are recruited to find the mythical hammer Ghal Maraz before the Empire descends into civil war.
  • PCs go on a series of missions through the mountains before finding and returning the hammer, as the Empire's civil war begins.
  • The PCs return the hammer on the eve of a climactic battle, and civil war is averted.
Yep. That's in it. A big part of the adventure.
When the new emperor is about to be crowned (I forget this fellow's name), Ghal Maraz attacks the Grand Theologist, revealed to be possessed by a demon.
Kind of. They are presenting Ghal Maraz at a ceremony to bring peace to the empire. The Crown Prince is sacrificed, a massive demon comes and kills most people in attendance.
PCs fight demon, save the day and the campaign concludes.
We can hope they defeat it. It's got like 300 wounds, blue and pink horrors, and cultists. I don't think they'll beat it, but I've been wrong before.
 

Urriak Uruk

Gaming is fun, and fun is for everyone
Warhammer Fantasy Battle 8th edition no longer exists, so I was just responding to that.
I guess they can say that is the intent in blogs or whatever, but the adventure gives no indication of that. In fact, some of the things in the old wargame have already happened in the past of the campaign world (Von Carstein, Grom the Paunch, etc.)
I heard their next focus was going to be products outside the Empire, but we'll just have to see.

Going through point-by-point, but putting it in spoiler tags.




More likely to be killed by the demon, but unlikely to survive unless the PCs are very lucky.

100%. The Crown Prince becomes a demon and starts killing everyone. And I doubt anyone can stop him.

Yep. That's in it. A big part of the adventure.

Kind of. They are presenting Ghal Maraz at a ceremony to bring peace to the empire. The Crown Prince is sacrificed, a massive demon comes and kills most people in attendance.

We can hope they defeat it. It's got like 300 wounds, blue and pink horrors, and cultists. I don't think they'll beat it, but I've been wrong before.

Oh wow! That's surprising, I guess they just decided to redo the OG version as close as possible.
 

Urriak Uruk

Gaming is fun, and fun is for everyone
Warhammer Fantasy Battle 8th edition no longer exists, so I was just responding to that.
I guess they can say that is the intent in blogs or whatever, but the adventure gives no indication of that. In fact, some of the things in the old wargame have already happened in the past of the campaign world (Von Carstein, Grom the Paunch, etc.)
I heard their next focus was going to be products outside the Empire, but we'll just have to see.

Going through point-by-point, but putting it in spoiler tags.




More likely to be killed by the demon, but unlikely to survive unless the PCs are very lucky.

100%. The Crown Prince becomes a demon and starts killing everyone. And I doubt anyone can stop him.

Yep. That's in it. A big part of the adventure.

Kind of. They are presenting Ghal Maraz at a ceremony to bring peace to the empire. The Crown Prince is sacrificed, a massive demon comes and kills most people in attendance.

We can hope they defeat it. It's got like 300 wounds, blue and pink horrors, and cultists. I don't think they'll beat it, but I've been wrong before.


So I did FINALLY dig up an actual review of Empire in Ruins, albeit in Polish, and if you look at the spoiler tag, it does seem to go against some of the points you've said. The Polish review lines up more with what I was expecting.
 

Retreater

Legend

So I did FINALLY dig up an actual review of Empire in Ruins, albeit in Polish, and if you look at the spoiler tag, it does seem to go against some of the points you've said. The Polish review lines up more with what I was expecting.
Weird. I was referring to my PDF while writing my response. Maybe my quick scan for answers (since I've only skimmed the book on my own) led to some misinterpreting what was going on.
I'll need to read that article for some clarification.
 

Retreater

Legend

So I did FINALLY dig up an actual review of Empire in Ruins, albeit in Polish, and if you look at the spoiler tag, it does seem to go against some of the points you've said. The Polish review lines up more with what I was expecting.
Ok. So I just read the review and nothing in it counters any of the points I made. Is there something you interpret differently that I can clarify?
 

Urriak Uruk

Gaming is fun, and fun is for everyone
Ok. So I just read the review and nothing in it counters any of the points I made. Is there something you interpret differently that I can clarify?

Yeah, it sounds like some events from the original are now moved around in order, so instead of this;
  • The Emperor Karl Franz, and his wife to be (Princess of Middenheim) are killed in an assassination attempt.
  • The Crown Prince fails to be elected the new Emperor, is revealed as a mutant, and kills Boris Todbringer (before being killed himself).
  • The PC are recruited to find the mythical hammer Ghal Maraz before the Empire descends into civil war.
  • PCs go on a series of missions through the mountains before finding and returning the hammer, as the Empire's civil war begins.
  • The PCs return the hammer on the eve of a climactic battle, and civil war is averted.
  • When the new emperor is about to be crowned (I forget this fellow's name), Ghal Maraz attacks the Grand Theologist, revealed to be possessed by a demon.
  • PCs fight demon, save the day and the campaign concludes.

It's more like this;
There is an attempted assassination of the Emperor and his wife to be (Princess of Middenheim), but the Emperor is revealed as a double as the real Karl Franz is seriously ill.
The PC are recruited to find the real hammer of Ghal Maraz before the Empire descends into civil war.
PCs go on a series of missions through the mountains before finding and returning the hammer, as the Empire's civil war begins.
The PCs return the hammer on the eve of a climactic battle, and civil war is averted.
The crown prince is possessed by a demon, and tries to seize control of the Empire.
PCs fight demon, save the day and the campaign concludes.
This changes things somewhat, as it looks like what's meant to happen is that the real Karl Franz is supposed to survive the campaign. Or maybe his double takes control of the Empire, that's not exactly clear to me, but it sounds like either way Karl Franz is still the leader.
 

Retreater

Legend
Yeah, it sounds like some events from the original are now moved around in order, so instead of this;
Ok. I think the miscommunication was that I wasn't aware you were doing an chronological list. I was going through each point and saying "yeah, that's in there - maybe a little modified - but it's in there."
 

Urriak Uruk

Gaming is fun, and fun is for everyone
Ok. I think the miscommunication was that I wasn't aware you were doing an chronological list. I was going through each point and saying "yeah, that's in there - maybe a little modified - but it's in there."

No worries, how would you know? It's very funny that the same events essentially happen, but in a different order!
 

TheSword

Legend
There are a couple of really nice twists.
The Karl Franz double is a smart idea. Particularly if you play it up. A good DM could have a lot of fun playing the emperors double as a bit dumb… a disappointment if the Emperor is built up to be a cunning diplomat. Doubles and the risk of doubles are foreshadowed in earlier books and the PCs may think they’re dealing with a doppelgänger.

Secondly the Crown Prince goes from being a mutant to being a protege of a set of tzeentchian tutors. Who are educating him to be liberal, progressive and a threat to the established order. By saving him the PCs are putting the empire in great peril… a really clever twist.
 

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