So yesterday on The Twittarz, +Rob Donoghue made some interesting comments: relating to using #fateacceleratededition for Bleach, he said that it's challenge to make fights which are unwinnable, but where the goal is to delay the opponent, interesting.  Particularly if avoiding Boring Turtle syndrome where someone just goes full defence because it's the most efficient option is to be avoided.

A few options occurred to me, mainly inspired by Rob's comment that the answer would probably have less to do with powers than transparency of outcomes.

Conceding the fight, with part of the narrative control being "I buy time for N thing to happen" would technically work, while simultaneously losing all of the interesting meat from the idea.

On the other hand, reframing Contests seems like a really good approach, since shifting the context and being transparent about outcomes are the only changes needed.  Essentially, we reframe victory to be 'making the contest last past N exchanges.'  Each exchange where you actually get a Victory yourself gives you a Boost you can use either in the contest - or afterwards, though I'd personally suggest limiting people to using 2 Boosts gained in such a way at a time.  (I want them to have an impact once the contest is over, but since it's possible you might walk away having earned a bunch of Boosts, I'd prefer to avoid someone alpha-striking by using them all at once.  Unless, you know, that was contextually awesome.)

That way, the outcomes are clear.  We can change the gearing of how it works by shifting how many Victories the opponent needs, and how many exchanges we have to hold out for.

Being a Boring Turtle lacks incentive because simply defending is unlikely to get you useful Victories, and if we're dealing with a context where the whole point of having the contest is because the character(s) are outmatched, then relying on defence is Not A Good Tactical Option.

The only thing I'm not 100% clear on is a way for a party of PCs to participate in this and still have it be interesting.  My main idea would be that if the antagonist Seriously Outmatched everybody, then having a bunch of Create Advantage actions being deployed would be profoundly useful.  That could be plenty tense.

It sounds to me like an approach that'd make sense in either Core or FAE, and which might have utility in a number of contexts.  For example, using the Fractal, the 'antagonist' might be 'an army,' and the PCs have to stop them crossing a bridge over a river until reinforcements arrive.  Hmm.  Yep, this might have legs to it.

What do people think?
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