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Amy Millar

Costing Weapon & Armour Rating Stunts

In Atomic Robo, you can purchase a Weapon Rating of 2 for 1/2 a stunt, and a Weapon Rating of 4 or an Armour Rating of 2 for a full stunt.

In Jadepunk, a Weapon Rating of 1 is worth 1/2 a stunt, and a Weapon Rating of 2 or an Armour Rating of 1 is worth a full stunt. 

But in Fate Core, one of the example "bad" stunts essentially gives Landon a Weapon Rating of 2 using his signature weapon - something the book calls out as too broad, since he'll pretty much always be using that sword. 


So, which way is right / the best / what you prefer?

I'm trying to figure out exactly how I want to play Weapon and Armour Ratings in a future game, so I'd really like to hear people's thoughts on the matter!

More Stunts without reducing Refresh

I've been thinking about what elements of Atomic Robo to incorporate into my shadowrun-esque Fate Core hack, and I'm considering an idea of inspired by mega-stunts.

The New Rules
All characters begin with 3 (or more} Refresh, and have both a Soft Stunt Limit (3) and a Hard Stunt Limit (double the Soft Limit, so 6).

The Soft Limit is the number of stunts a character can have normally. Each stunt worth of benefits over that adds one to the GM's FP Reserve, as per mega-stunts. A character can have no more stunt benefits that their Hard Limit, however. 

For example, a character could have just three stunts (adding +0 to the GM's Reserve) or up to six stunts (adding +3 to the GM's Reserve).

At a Major Milestone, characters would get +1 Refresh as normal. This can be held onto, or used to increase their Soft Stunt Limit. A point of Refresh would increase the Soft Limit to 4, and thus the Hard Limit to 8 (since it's double the Soft Limit). 


So, does that make sense? Does it sound balanced?

Any thoughts would be appreciated!

Costing Super Skills

The Fate System Toolkit suggests the idea of "Super Skills", where you can spend a Fate Point to double a particular skill for a roll, then reduce that Skill by 1 for the rest of the scene.

Inspired by this, I was thinking about implementing the following special "stunt" to reflect certain supernatural abilities:

"You may spend a FP to add +4 to your [Skill] for a single roll. After, reduce your [Skill] rating by 1 for the remainder of the scene."

So if your Shoot is +3, it becomes +7 for a single roll at the cost of a Fate Point, but is then reduced to +2 afterwards. You specifically cannot use this ability more than once per roll, but you can invoke additional aspects as normal.

What I'm unsure on is the appropriate Refresh cost. Given the inbuilt costs of the ability (you must spend a Fate Point, and the skill is reduce by 1 afterwards) should this cost 1, 2 or more Refresh?

Nathan Ford from Leverage in Fate Core

I've been planning to run a Leverage-style game in Fate Core in a week or so, which has got me thinking about how I might write up the Leverage crew. 

Now this is easy in terms of Aspects, as well as Skills for 4/5 of the usual crew, but I've been a bit stuck on how to do Nathan Ford (the Mastermind).

His role is to coordinate and process all the information, form the plan and direct his team. But I'm not sure what Skills those would be (if any!) as it seems that there isn't really a Fate Core skill that covers forming plans or directing a team (outside of being the one that Creates Advantages?). 

The best I could think of was to give him Notice +4 / Empathy +3 / Investigate +3. But it seems a shame there isn't really a Skill you can use to help create and pre-emptively support a plan via Create an Advantage (unless I missed it?). 

So, any thoughts on how you would stat up a Mastermind?

Adding a Seventh Approach for Horror FAE

I've been planning some tweaks to Fate Accelerated for a while now in order to closer fit the sort of mood I want for a horror game. 

One particular thought bubble is adding Resolute as an Approach. 

A Resolute action is where you act purposefully, determined and unwavering. 

One of my main reasonings was to allow for some sort of 'Will' Approach for horror gaming. How do you react in the face of something horrible or terrifying? Especially if you were to 'overcome' or 'defend' against a horrible sight rather than a monster you can fight.

My concern is whether or not Resolute is too passive for an Approach? I can think of other uses (standing up against someone, keeping watch, etc), but is it broad enough to be an effective Approach?

Any thoughts would be appreciated!

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High School Students in FATE

So I've been thinking about how I would tweak Fate Core to run normal high-school students.

I realise that I could just keep everything the way it is and just say that +5 means something different than in regular Fate, but I kinda want something more tangible than that.

I also want to allow teenage characters to not seem too competent, allow adults to be on average more competent without giving them large bonuses, and also allowing more room for characters to grow.

I should also clarify that this is, as a base, pretty much for playing regular human characters in the age range between 13 and 18-ish. 


I altered the Phase Trio to be more high-school orientated, a revised version of 

The Trio is now Home, School and a Relationship.

Characters receive one +3 Skill, two +2 Skills and three +1 Skills.
The Skill Cap is +4. 

The Skill List is now 4 Physical, 4 Social and 4 Mental Skills:

Finesse (manual dexterity and sneakiness)
Physique (used to melee Attack)

Characters get 3 Refresh but only 2 Stunts.

1 of these Stunts must grant a general +2 bonus in a particular area of interest, such as a hobby, sport or favourite school subject. This should be flavourful, but not too broad.


There's a expanded version of the above in the attached one-page document. 

So: any questions, comments, criticisms, thoughts?

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FateShoe = Fate Core + Gumshoe [Revised]

So, after a fair amount of work and adjustments, here's the complete rules for running a Fate GUMSHOE game!

You can also see my first post on the first draft here:

...but in summary, I'm a big fan of both Fate Core and GUMSHOE, so I wanted to give merging the two systems a shot.

For those unfamiliar with GUMSHOE - essentially, it's a system designed from the ground up to support investigative-style games, and avoid the pitfall of a mystery stalling because someone failed their Spot Hidden roll and missed the important clue. It also treats its characters as proactive, competent and... hey!

So, what did I do?
Essentially, this hack moves GUMSHOE's Investigative Skills into Fate Core, and then tweaks the rules and dials to simulate the feel of GUMSHOE in Fate. 

Although I used the GUMSHOE game The Esoterrorists as the base (since it's modern and the simplest), I've also included alternate Skill Lists and special rules to allow both Night's Black Agents and Trail of Cthulhu to be played using FateShoe.

Using those as examples, it should be rather easy to run any other GUMSHOE system using the FateShoe rules as well (although I'm not as familiar with the others, which is why I didn't include them).

In any case, I'd love it if anyone gave the rules a look over and could provide any thoughts or feedback on them. Thanks!


Also, here's a Character Sheet for Esoterrorists:

And Night's Black Agents:


How to use Fate Points in GUMSHOE + Fate Core

At the moment, I'm working on a hack to combine the Fate Core and GUMSHOE systems together. One part I'm a little unsure about, however, is handling Fate Points versus Investigative Skill Points.

In GUMSHOE, you get a number of points for each of your 'Investigative Skills' per scenario equal to its rating. You can always simply just use an Investigative Skill, but you can also spend Investigative Points for special benefits. 

Now in my original draft (currently undergoing heavy revisions and expansion) I simply did away with Investigative Pool Points altogether and had Fate Points serve the same purpose. 

Such a method has the advantage of simplicity and less resources to manage, but notably reduces the amount of points a character would likely be able to spend otherwise (and I'm unsure how clunky the Ratings system might be, see below).

So, the way I see it, I have two options:

(A) Fate Points
Each Investigative Skill has a Rating between 1 and 3. Spending a Fate Point allows a Skill to 'succeed with style' and receive a special benefit. Rating 3 Skills always 'succeed with style'. 

In addition, you may invoke Investigative Skills for free to assist with General Skill rolls where they are useful, granting a bonus equal to the Investigative Skill's Rating. 

Each Investigative Skill has an individual amount of Pool Points that may be spent for a special benefit, and refresh after a scenario is over.

Spending one of these points to assist with a General Skill roll grants a +2 bonus. 

So, that's where I am at the moment. Any thoughts?

[Link to original FateShoe post: ]

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FateShoe = Fate Core + Gumshoe

I'm a big fan of both Fate and GUMSHOE. So I thought, why not just combine the two?

The attached document is the first write up of my attempt to do exactly that. 

I doubt I have to introduce Fate here, but for those who are unfamiliar with GUMSHOE - essentially, it's a system designed from the ground up to support investigative-style games, and avoid the pitfall of a mystery stalling because someone failed their Spot Hidden roll and missed the important clue. It also treats its characters as proactive, competent and... hey!

I should say that this hack is probably more Fate than GUMSHOE, simply because it's far easier to bring GUMSHOE into Fate than the other way around. This means reducing GUMSHOE's resource management mechanics, but those are one of the reasons for this hack in the first place (especially in regards to General Abilities/Skills). 

Primarily, making 'FateShoe' was about adding in a mechanic for Investigative Abilities and then fiddling with the Fate dials to both accommodate this new mechanic and mimic the general tone of GUMSHOE (which is slightly less pulpy than regular Fate Core).

So, what have I done?

- The core is Fate Core. 

- Skills are either General (and function like Skills normally do in Fate) or Investigative (and are special).

- Investigative Skills automatically succeed, in the sense that in a game with a binary pass/fail mechanic, Investigative Skills are assumed to have rolled a success. This means that if there are any core or important clues in a scene, a character will find them.

- You may spend a Fate Point to essentially 'succeed with style' when using a Investigative Skill. This means you might find additional clues, or some other form of bonus. This replaces individual Pool Points.

- Investigative Skills (that you have) are ranked either Tier 1, 2 or 3. Players may 'invoke' their Investigative Skills when making relevant General Skill rolls, and with a interesting justification, grant either a +1 (for Tier 2 Skills) or +2 (for Tier 3 Skills) to that roll.

- I modified Mental Stress so that it now represents 'Stability' - and is 'attacked' by horrific experiences and encounters.

- And the rest was primarily adjusting minor parts of character creation and the rules to move the tone more towards that of GUMSHOE games.

I've used the GUMSHOE game The Esoterrorists as the base for the Skills and tone simply because it's both the simplest and ur-GUMSHOE game. With the current foundation, it should be rather easy to adjust the skill lists for Trail of Cthulhu, Night's Black Agents, etc.

In any case, though, if anyone has time to read through the document (or my above post!) I'd love to hear any thoughts, comments, suggestions or other feedback!


EDIT: Here's a slightly revised version of the attached document, also with alternate Skill Lists!
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