FAE Fantasy: Updates

I hadn’t intended to make a Friday post. For the time being, Monday is monsters, Wednesday is adventurers, and every other Saturday (or so) is going to be something special. But I’ve made some changes to the character sheets, so I thought an update was in order.

First up: the Hardy Human Knight from Wednesday. I got some very good feedback on the character over on the Fate Accelerated Fantasy Google Plus site. Markus Wagner suggested that having to spend a Fate point and limiting the effect to once a session was too steep a cost for the “reduce a consequence” stunt. After some discussion I agreed and came up with an alternative; a second mild consequence slot.

In Fate Accelerated Edition, stress clears at the end of each scene. Stress represents exhaustion, scrapes and bruises, and other minor things that go away after a few minutes of rest. Consequences are more lasting effects. Mild consequence (those that mitigate 2-shifts of stress) clear up at the end of the scene, provided the character has had a chance to rest. Moderate consequences (those that mitigate 4-shifts of stress) clear up at the end of the next session, as long as it makes sense in the story. Severe consequences (those that mitigate 6-shifts of stress) clear up at the end of a scenario, again provided it makes sense in the story.

When a character takes a hit, the player can mark a single stress box and any number of consequence to absorb the stress. So, a character who takes a 4-shift hit could mark their 2-shift stress box and take a mild consequence to avoid being taken out. Both of those will clear up at the end of the scene, but they wouldn’t have many stress boxes left. Or they could take a moderate consequence instead. That will take longer to go away, but all three of their stress boxes are clear. A character with two mild consequences who takes a 4-shift hit could mark both mild consequences, still has all their stress boxes clear, and will clear both consequences (and any stress taken) at the end of the scene. Having a second mild consequence is obviously very useful.

The downside of consequences is that they are aspects, and like all other aspects, they can be compelled by the GM and invoked by other characters. When a player marks a consequence for their character, whomever landed the attack gets a free invoke on that consequence, just as if they’d made a new aspect. Because, in a sense, they have. So while having more consequence slots means you can absorb more stress, it also means you’ll have more aspects for your opponents to take advantage of.

But Fate points flowing around the table as players create, invoke, and compel aspects is a big part of the Fate game. So rather than a “fancy” stunt, I’m fine with giving the Hardy Human Knight a second mild consequence slot as one of her stunts. The character sheet has been updated, and all the old links should point to the correct place. But just in case, here are the links to the A4-sized PDF and the letter-sized PDF again.

Hardy_Human_Knight_A4-(1)

Next, I’ve updated all the previous character and monster sheets so that aspects are shown in dark blue text. I like how that makes them quick to identify when looking at the sheets. All the original links on the original blog  posts and on the collected list page should have updated.

As I said, I doubt that Friday posts will be a common occurrence. Two posts per week, plus one or two special Saturday posts is keeping me busy enough already. I’ll reserve Fridays for updates and corrections, which will hopefully be few and far between.

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FAE Fantasy: Updates

Bubbleine

I was talking about the Steven Universe episode Last One Out of Beach City with my coworker yesterday and she brings up Bubbleine. That reminded me I was working on an Adventure Time hack of Ben Lehman’s Hot Guys Making Out with Princess Bubblegum and Marceline as the main characters.

I need to go finish it. The four characters were Princess Bubblegum, Marceline, Finn & Jake (both controlled by a single player), and the Ice King. Everyone was written up except for the Ice King, but I have some ideas for him. Mostly about him puttering around and blaming Gunter for things that may or may not have actually happened.

Bubbleine

Random Jaeger Name Generator

Nearly three years ago I made myself a bunch of tables to randomly generate some Jaeger names for a Cortex Plus Pacific Rim game I was tinkering with. I spiffed it up a bit design-wise, and decided to share. That’s 2,880 possible names, and yes, the tables are arranged so that you can get names like Gipsy Danger, Cherno Alpha, Striker Eureka, and Crimson Typhoon.

Nothing’s really come of that Cortex Plus Pacific Rim inspired game I was working on (as usual I lost interest but kept the notes), but people might still find these tables useful. You could use then for atlas names in Stras Acimovic’s upcoming Atlas Reckoning game (which is in closed beta now). I should really convert the tables to use playing cards rather than dice in that case though.

JaegerNameGenerator

Random Jaeger Name Generator

Star Butterfly Random Blast Names

It’s goofy and over the top, but I’m enjoying Star vs. the Forces of Evil. I’ve only watched the first season so far and it still feels a bit random, but I’m certainly going to keep watching. And, naturally, I’m thinking about how to stat up the characters in Fate Accelerated Edition. What can I say? I have a problem.

To that end, I made this: a random spell name generator for Star Butterfly’s magical blasts using Fate Dice. Knock yourself out. Mega Tiara Glowworm Devastation!

SvtFoE_Blasts

Star Butterfly Random Blast Names

The Circle

The Circle is going to be my entry for the 2017 200 Word RPG Challenge. (If you don’t know about the challenge, it’s pretty much what it says on the cover; a contest that challenges people to write a complete roleplaying game in 200 words or less. I didn’t participate last year, but I submitted Japanese Office back in 2015. With such a small word count, submissions are usually rules-lite storygames or LARPS; it’s hard to write out a involved rules with only 200 words.) Entries for the 2017 contest can be submitted from April 15th to the 23rd, and winners will be announced on May 8th. I fumbled around for an idea this year before finally deciding on teenaged witches, a subject I use often.

Back around 2010 when I was just getting into Apocalypse World-based games I stumbled across the crowdfunding campaign for Monsterhearts. I backed it mostly because I was curious to see how you could use the PbtA game framework to play Twilight the roleplaying game. We’d also been playing in a Vampire: the Requiem campaign, and Monsterhearts seemed like a condensed version of the things I found most interesting in V:tR, namely the personal drama. Monsterhearts has become one of, if not my most, favorite roleplaying game for a number of reasons, and it turned me onto a whole world of (mostly young adult) paranormal romance media. I love the cheesy, over the top melodrama.

My game The Circle is heavily inspired by L.J. Smith’s book series The Secret Circle, about a coven of twelve teenaged witches in New England. (There was a 2011 TV series based very loosely on the books that only lasted a single 22-episode season. It wasn’t very good, and I’m still grumpy it didn’t get a better adaptation.) I tried to use the themes and elements from The Secret Circle in The Circle, or as many as I could in only 200 words. The complete game is below:

The Circle
You are a teenaged witch. Give your witch:

  • a name
  • a three-word archetype
  • a preferred sphere of magic

Introduce your witches. You all:

  • live near each other
  • are close in age
  • attend the same high school

You are a Circle; more powerful together than alone. Split the Circle: half Dawn, half Dusk. Sit on opposing sides of the space; you are rivals but not enemies.

As a Circle decide:

  • what big magic you are planning
  • what preparations must be completed
  • what complications are in your way

Remove the Jokers from a deck of cards. Shuffle it. Put it in the center of the space. Taking informal turns, narrate what your witch think, feels, and does.

When you narrate something with an uncertain outcome or that uses magic, pick an opposing player and draw three cards. If it reinforces your archetype, draw an extra card. If it involves magic within your preferred sphere, draw an extra card. Choose and reveal three cards:

  • three black: you narrate the outcome
  • two black: you narrate the outcome; they narrate a complication
  • two red: they narrate the outcome; you narrate an advantage
  • three red: they narrate the outcome

Shuffle after each draw.

It clocks in at 197 words. I’ve tried to “bake in” all the necessary elements so that everyone quickly gets what the game’s about, makes an appropriate character, and has an issue to resolve. One of the things I’m struggling with in my other game, Keep it Weird, Beach City, is the players narrating both the opposition and how they overcome it. That can be a bit unsatisfying. So here I’ve tried to avoid that by having a rival player narrate complications and outcomes. The coven is pretty much split in half, six “good” and six “bad” (though that’s simplifying it) in The Secret Circle, and I thought that was a perfect way to have players be antagonists for each other in the game.

I might still tweak this before submitting it (the entry form hasn’t gone up yet), but I don’t think there’s much more I need to do with it. As usual, if you try this out, I’d love to hear feedback.

The Circle