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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default [FATE] Strands of Fate

    I've seen nothing about Strands of Fate on here, it's a rather different take on the FATE fractal than the other new FATE games (Legends of Anglerre, Dresden Files, Diaspora). Instead of being a focused and specific game designed to do one thing, it's very much a generic toolkit to be customised for the job.

    Strands of Fate features:

    • A system of Advantages that provide you with fully functional magic, psionics, mutations, cybernetic enhancements, or any other strange power you can imagine.
    • Rules for creating and playing with vehicles, from pirate ships to star ships to ten story tall battle mechs.
    • Support for non-human races or even transhuman characters.
    • A system for creating and controlling units and organizations, and using them to play out regional or world spanning conflicts.
    • Antagonists and equipment to challenge and aid your characters, whether they’re knights, modern soldiers, or star hopping androids.
    • While Strands of Fate is a stand alone product, its "toolkit" design allows it to be used to enhance other FATE games by providing an array of compatible optional systems.

    It's also quite a bit smaller and shorter than some of the other door-stoppers you might be used to with FATE. If you were someone who disliked the Skill pyramid, it's gone. Not just the pyramid, but Skills as well. Instead there's twelve Abilities rated 0-5 (2 is average).

    No more collaborative chargen either, unless you want to do it. There's some useful guidance around Aspects if you've found it difficult to come up with them in the past (and not simply long lists of examples).

    Here's some example characters I made up for a historical game I'll be running later in the year:

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    CamPL: Variant Hero [Refresh: 6; Abilities: 27/4; Advantages: 6/2 Expert only]

    Kassandros of Halikarnassos

    Character Aspects

    • Hard-bitten Mercenary Soldier
    • Get rich and retire to my own farm in comfort
    • Hellenised Karian tribesman
    • The Gods favour those who give them their due
    • Inveterate Gambler



    +++

    Abilities

    Physical [Stress:6]

    Agility: 3; Endurance: 3; Perception: 2; Strength: 3

    Mental [Stress:5]

    Craft: 3; Knowledge: 1; Reasoning: 3; Willpower: 2

    Social [Stress:3]

    Empathy: 2; Deception: 2; Persuasion: 2; Resources: 1

    +++

    Specialty Aspects

    • Skilled Thureophoros (Strength)
    • Seasoned Campaigner (Endurance)
    • Exiled from Antioch (Persuasion)
    • Brotherhood of Mithras (Persuasion)
    • Cruel Sense of Humour (Persuasion)



    +++

    Advantages (6 spent)

    • Alertness [+2 to avoid ambush; 1AP]
    • Fleet of Foot [+2 to run; 1AP]
    • Grace Under Fire [+2 to initiative; 1AP]
    • Hard Style:Pankration [Unarmed attacks gain a +2 WR; 1AP]
    • Quick Step [no supplementary action to move and attack; 1AP]
    • Weapon Specialist: Spear [+1 to attack rolls with spears; 1AP]




    +++

    Equipment

    Long Spear, Heavy Shield, Short Sword, Javelins, Linothorax


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    CamPL: Variant Hero [Refresh: 6; Abilities: 27/4; Advantages: 6/2 Expert only]

    Akestes of Taras

    Character Aspects
    • Dispossessed Noble Horseman
    • Reclaim my birthright!
    • Scion of Tarentine Aristocracy
    • No hardship is too great in the pursuit of Glory
    • Overweening Pride


    +++

    Abilities

    Physical [Stress:5]

    Agility: 3; Endurance: 2; Perception: 2; Strength: 3

    Mental [Stress:5]

    Craft: 2; Knowledge: 2; Reasoning: 2; Willpower: 3

    Social [Stress:6]

    Empathy: 2; Deception: 2; Persuasion: 3; Resources: 3

    +++

    Specialty Aspects

    • Cavalryman's Armaments (Strength)
    • Trusty Steed (Resources)
    • Hates Romans (Persuasion)
    • Dashing Officer (Persuasion)
    • Classist (Persuasion)


    +++

    Advantages (6 spent)
    • Experienced II [+2 to Abilities; +2AP]
    • Mounted Warrior [no supplementary action penalty in the saddle; 1AP]
    • Trained Rider [+2 to riding rolls; 1AP]
    • Weapon Specialist: Sword [+1 to attack rolls with swords; 1AP]
    • Well Known [+2 Persuasion when reputation is relevant; 1AP]



    +++

    Equipment

    Small Shield, Kopis, Javelins, Linothorax, Horse


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    CamPL: Variant Hero [Refresh: 6; Abilities: 27/4; Advantages: 6/2 Expert only]

    Berenike, the Athena Promachos of Massilia

    Character Aspects
    • Honourable Champion of Athene
    • Spread the light of civilisation
    • Celto-Hellenic Massiliote
    • I was born to do this
    • A Woman in a Man's World


    +++

    Abilities

    Physical [Stress:6]

    Agility: 2; Endurance: 3; Perception: 2; Strength: 3

    Mental [Stress:4]

    Craft: 2; Knowledge: 3; Reasoning: 2; Willpower: 2

    Social [Stress:5]

    Empathy: 3; Deception: 1; Persuasion: 3; Resources: 2

    +++

    Specialty Aspects

    • Hoplite Training (Strength)
    • Shield of Athene (Resources)
    • The cult at Athens accuses me of impiety (Persuasion)
    • Friends in Pergamon (Persuasion)
    • Honest to a Fault (Deception)


    +++

    Advantages (6 spent)
    • Experienced I [+1 to Abilities; +1AP]
    • Fearless [+2 Willpower against fear; 1AP]
    • Smooth Over [+2 Persuasion to calm people; 1AP]
    • Weapon Specialist: Spear [+1 to attack rolls with spears; 1AP]
    • Well Known [+2 Persuasion when reputation is relevant; 1AP]
    • Wrestler [+2 grappling rolls]



    +++

    Equipment

    Mail, Heavy Shield, Long Spear, Short Sword, Helm


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    CamPL: Variant Hero [Refresh: 6; Abilities: 27/4; Advantages: 6/2 Expert only]

    Timasion of Corinth

    Character Aspects
    • Olympian Athlete
    • To be the greatest victor ever known
    • Proud Corinthian
    • Effort leads to success
    • Act first, think later


    +++

    Abilities

    Physical [Stress:8]

    Agility: 3; Endurance: 4; Perception: 2; Strength: 4

    Mental [Stress:5]

    Craft: 2; Knowledge: 2; Reasoning: 2; Willpower: 3

    Social [Stress:4]

    Empathy: 1; Deception: 1; Persuasion: 2; Resources: 2

    +++

    Specialty Aspects

    • Flawless Physique (Strength)
    • Skillful Competitor (Agility)
    • Friends in Low Places (Persuasion)
    • Rival: Agathokles of Samos (Persuasion)
    • Trusting (Empathy)


    +++

    Advantages (6 spent)
    • Experienced I [+1 to Abilities; +1AP]
    • Fleet of Foot [+2 to run; 1AP]
    • Hard Style: Pankration [+2WR unarmed; 1AP]
    • Striking Looks [+2 Persuasion with those attracted to men; 1AP]
    • Weapon Specialist: unarmed [+1 to attack rolls unarmed; 1AP]
    • Wrestler [+2 grappling rolls]



    +++

    Equipment

    Cestus, oils, discus, javelin


    Spoiler
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    CamPL: Variant Hero [Refresh: 6; Abilities: 27/4; Advantages: 6/2 Expert only]

    Cacumattos of the Bituriges

    Character Aspects
    • Empowered Druid
    • Avert the doom that is coming to all peoples
    • Avaricum is my home
    • What I see is truth
    • Barbaros


    +++

    Abilities

    Physical [Stress:5]

    Agility: 2; Endurance: 2; Perception: 3; Strength: 2

    Mental [Stress:6]

    Craft: 2; Knowledge: 3; Reasoning: 3; Willpower: 3

    Social [Stress:4]

    Empathy: 2; Deception: 2; Persuasion: 3; Resources: 1

    +++

    Specialty Aspects

    • I trained in Brittania (Knowledge)
    • Hardy Traveller (Endurance)
    • Holy Man (Persuasion)
    • Emnity of the Carnutes (Persuasion)
    • Forsaken material things (Resources)


    +++

    Advantages (6 spent)
    • Experienced I [+1 to Abilities; 1AP]
    • Fast Talker [+2 to convince someone of what you say; 1AP]
    • Precise Memory [+2 to recall something said; 1AP]
    • Ritual Power [Astral Perception (Sight & Sound), Blessing, Heal, Precognition; 2AP/10RP]
    • Sense Deception [+2 to Empathy to detect a lie; 1AP]



    +++

    Equipment

    Staff, belt knife
    Wushu Open Reloaded
    Actual Play: The Shadow of the Sun (Acrozatarim's WFRP campaign) as Pawel Hals and Mass: the Effecting - Transcendence as Russell Ortiz.
    Now running: Tyche's Favourites, a historical ACKS campaign set around Massalia 300BC.
    In Sanity We Trust Productions - our podcasting site where you can hear our dulcet tones, updated almost every week.

  2. - Top - End - #2
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    I love Strands of Fate. It's the FATE answer to GURPS, which is great for those of us who like Aspects. It can never replace a game that's specialized towards a genre (Dresden Files to urban fantasy, SotC to pulp and steampunk, etc), but it's really, really good.

    The game I ran with it ended up going belly-up for time reasons, but I do enjoy working with the system. If I had time for another game, I'd like to do Strands of Fate again.

    However, it is surprisingly hard to replicate low fantasy. Someone tell me if you can manage a good way of doing that.

  3. - Top - End - #3
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by DeadManSleeping View Post
    However, it is surprisingly hard to replicate low fantasy. Someone tell me if you can manage a good way of doing that.
    What was the difficulty? Were characters too durable? Was it an issue with magic? Something else entirely?

    I'm going historical (with very little magic indeed, nothing that couldn't be reasoned away as coincidence) and it feels quite right so far.
    Last edited by Kiero; 2011-03-05 at 08:05 PM.
    Wushu Open Reloaded
    Actual Play: The Shadow of the Sun (Acrozatarim's WFRP campaign) as Pawel Hals and Mass: the Effecting - Transcendence as Russell Ortiz.
    Now running: Tyche's Favourites, a historical ACKS campaign set around Massalia 300BC.
    In Sanity We Trust Productions - our podcasting site where you can hear our dulcet tones, updated almost every week.

  4. - Top - End - #4
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    On the other end of the spectrum, do you feel it could be used for porting, say, Exalted to?
    Last edited by Weimann; 2011-03-05 at 08:16 PM.
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  5. - Top - End - #5
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    What was the difficulty? Were characters too durable? Was it an issue with magic? Something else entirely?
    There are no systems for subtle workings of magic that are actually useful. Enchanting objects generally leads to high-magic objects, ritual magic is just slower high-magic, and characters can either afford really powerful magic or can't really afford magic at all. I know this because two of my players wanted less-than-overt magic effects, and were pretty much stuck.

    Quote Originally Posted by Weimann View Post
    On the other end of the spectrum, do you feel it could be used for porting, say, Exalted to?
    Yes, if you're willing to make your Exalts a bit more...limited. In standard Exalted, each character HAS to have a pretty varied set of things he does with his magic. Different Charms for summoning swords, enhancing sword attacks, enhancing sword defenses, getting to swing his sword first, throwing swords, et cetera. In Strands of Fate, the character who can do all that will change to a character who summons his swords and attacks well with them. Mechanically, the magics become quite a bit less involved.

    Note that they do not become less INTERESTING. That's what the Aspects are for! Maybe you only gain one power from an esoteric martial art instead of 9, but you also gain one or two Aspects that change the entire way you play your character. It really enhances the feel of "Charms as unique individual techniques", since every character will have, at most, five or so that are actual mechanical powers (and many will have less). All the nuance of the magic is in the Aspects.

    I would be happy playing Exalted in Strands of Fate. I can't guarantee that it would be everyone's cup of tea, though.

  6. - Top - End - #6
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Thanks for the insight
    Quoth the raven, "Polly wants a cracker."

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  7. - Top - End - #7
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by DeadManSleeping View Post
    There are no systems for subtle workings of magic that are actually useful. Enchanting objects generally leads to high-magic objects, ritual magic is just slower high-magic, and characters can either afford really powerful magic or can't really afford magic at all. I know this because two of my players wanted less-than-overt magic effects, and were pretty much stuck.
    What about all the stuff in the Meta Powers section? Limitations at the very least might offer ways to make things more subtle, and simply controlling which Powers can and can't be accessed in the game would go a long way. It is a toolkit for customising, after all.

    Here's what I've done with magic for my game:

    Willpower is the Affinity Ability for magic. You need a Character Aspect which describes your magical link. You then need to purchase the Meta-Power Ritual Power (as an Advantage). This is the only means by which magic can be used.

    The following Powers are available via ritual: Affliction, Astral Perception, Astral Projection, Awe*, Blessing, Clairsentience, Heal, Illusions*, Morph*, Morph Living*, Poison, Postcognition, Precognition, Read Emotions*, Read Thoughts*, Repel Creature, Sense, Summon Creature.

    The asterisk-marked ones are those I'm less sure of, they may be bordering a little too close to the mythic. The aim is to be subtle, no spontaneous fireballs in your face.
    Using Control with some in-depth discussion with the players as to what it covers could achieve that too.
    Last edited by Kiero; 2011-03-05 at 08:56 PM.
    Wushu Open Reloaded
    Actual Play: The Shadow of the Sun (Acrozatarim's WFRP campaign) as Pawel Hals and Mass: the Effecting - Transcendence as Russell Ortiz.
    Now running: Tyche's Favourites, a historical ACKS campaign set around Massalia 300BC.
    In Sanity We Trust Productions - our podcasting site where you can hear our dulcet tones, updated almost every week.

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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    I bought the Strands of Fate book, and it's quite interesting. I like the modularity of it, but it seems it'll take some work before you can modify it to fit your particular game. Still, the idea is nice.

    So, questions about Aspects. This is how I understand it so far.

    Aspects describe stuff, such as your character, your gun, your state of health and so on. These qualities can be used to influence the game.

    You may invoke an Aspect you possess by paying 1 Fate Point, gaining bonuses or triggering a beneficial effect. You may also compel an Aspect you possess, suffering penalties or triggering a detrimental effect in order to regain a Fate point. This is an active compel. The GM can take this initiative, offering a Fate Point in return for letting your Aspect be compelled, which is a passive compel.

    Furthermore, you can invoke Aspects relating to the environment (paying a Fate Point) and compel those relating to your opponent (paying a Fate Point to that opponent).

    1) Is it possible to compel an Aspect of the environment, or invoke an opponent's Aspect? I think no, but I want to make sure.

    2) Is there anything that prevents you from invoking all of your aspects each turn, and compel all of his, except a high Fate Point cost? I take it you have they have to be appropriate for the scene?

    3) Let's say I fight a guy with a big broadsword in a confined space. It's then appropriate to compel the Huge(P) Aspect on his sword. However, I can then compel it so that he suffers penalties, or I can compel if for effect. What presents me from compelling the effect "you can't use that at all in this confined space"?
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  9. - Top - End - #9
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Weimann View Post
    1) Is it possible to compel an Aspect of the environment, or invoke an opponent's Aspect? I think no, but I want to make sure.
    Yes, you can Compel or Invoke any Aspect you are aware of, it all works exactly the same.

    Quote Originally Posted by Weimann View Post
    2) Is there anything that prevents you from invoking all of your aspects each turn, and compel all of his, except a high Fate Point cost? I take it you have they have to be appropriate for the scene?
    No, just the limits of your Fate Point supply (and common sense in trying to preserve them).

    You can limit it through the use of Scopes (sidebar on p53) if you're concerned about people trying to win by simply throwing FPs at conflicts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Weimann View Post
    3) Let's say I fight a guy with a big broadsword in a confined space. It's then appropriate to compel the Huge(P) Aspect on his sword. However, I can then compel it so that he suffers penalties, or I can compel if for effect. What presents me from compelling the effect "you can't use that at all in this confined space"?
    Table rules, basically. By the rules both are perfectly fine, it takes mutual agreement for the player to use one rather than the other. If the player has described moving into a really tight space, then perhaps it can be Compelled for effect, whereas if its just more confined than the open, only for the penalty.

    (Being Persistent, the player doesn't have to pay any FPs for this to happen, either).
    Wushu Open Reloaded
    Actual Play: The Shadow of the Sun (Acrozatarim's WFRP campaign) as Pawel Hals and Mass: the Effecting - Transcendence as Russell Ortiz.
    Now running: Tyche's Favourites, a historical ACKS campaign set around Massalia 300BC.
    In Sanity We Trust Productions - our podcasting site where you can hear our dulcet tones, updated almost every week.

  10. - Top - End - #10
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    Yes, you can Compel or Invoke any Aspect you are aware of, it all works exactly the same.
    Then, how does a compelled environmental Aspect of an Invoked opponent Aspect represent? I can understand compelling a weapons Huge(P) Aspect to make it harder to hit with in confined spaces, but how do I invoke it to make me more likely to hit? That doesn't make sense.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    No, just the limits of your Fate Point supply (and common sense in trying to preserve them).

    You can limit it through the use of Scopes (sidebar on p53) if you're concerned about people trying to win by simply throwing FPs at conflicts.
    So there isn't even an propriety requisite? Can I invoke my "Bakes lovely cookies" Aspect to win at karate? I'm not trying to be silly, but I'd like to be sure.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    Table rules, basically. By the rules both are perfectly fine, it takes mutual agreement for the player to use one rather than the other. If the player has described moving into a really tight space, then perhaps it can be Compelled for effect, whereas if its just more confined than the open, only for the penalty.

    (Being Persistent, the player doesn't have to pay any FPs for this to happen, either).
    Roger that,
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  11. - Top - End - #11
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Weimann View Post
    Then, how does a compelled environmental Aspect of an Invoked opponent Aspect represent? I can understand compelling a weapons Huge(P) Aspect to make it harder to hit with in confined spaces, but how do I invoke it to make me more likely to hit? That doesn't make sense.
    Be in a situation where his weapon makes him clumsy and your shorter one better able to reach or take advantage of opportunities. Maybe you're both on a slippery surface or fighting on a small boat and his big swings leave him unbalanced and exposed. Or perhaps you're fighting close-in where your shorter weapon is much handier and his longer one is a hindrance. There's plenty of ways it could work.

    Its a mechanical consideration first and foremost, if an Aspect exists you can use it. Provided you can justify it in the game narrative.

    Quote Originally Posted by Weimann View Post
    So there isn't even an propriety requisite? Can I invoke my "Bakes lovely cookies" Aspect to win at karate? I'm not trying to be silly, but I'd like to be sure.
    Yes, the use of the Aspect has to be relevant, which I took that as a given. That's why there's a difference between Invoking an Aspect, and simply spending an FP (which isn't as cost-effective).
    Last edited by Kiero; 2011-03-07 at 07:55 PM.
    Wushu Open Reloaded
    Actual Play: The Shadow of the Sun (Acrozatarim's WFRP campaign) as Pawel Hals and Mass: the Effecting - Transcendence as Russell Ortiz.
    Now running: Tyche's Favourites, a historical ACKS campaign set around Massalia 300BC.
    In Sanity We Trust Productions - our podcasting site where you can hear our dulcet tones, updated almost every week.

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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    Be in a situation where his weapon makes him clumsy and your shorter one better able to reach or take advantage of opportunities. Maybe you're both on a slippery surface or fighting on a small boat and his big swings leave him unbalanced and exposed. Or perhaps you're fighting close-in where your shorter weapon is much handier and his longer one is a hindrance. There's plenty of ways it could work.

    Its a mechanical consideration first and foremost, if an Aspect exists you can use it. Provided you can justify it in the game narrative.
    Hm, I see. So would I still be paying the fate Point to him, as I would if I compelled it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    Yes, the use of the Aspect has to be relevant, which I took that as a given. That's why there's a difference between Invoking an Aspect, and simply spending an FP (which isn't as cost-effective).
    AH, great. It's just I actually had such a statement in my question, and you said "no", which left me a bit flummoxed. THanks for straightening it out

    On another note, if you don't mind: supplemental actions seem kind of strange. What determines what kind of actions you can take as supplemental actions, like, why can't I just Attack as a simple action and then Attack again as a supplemental action? Also, it seems strange that you only take penalties to your simple action; I'd expect you to take penalties to every action in the "flurry" (for lack of a better term).
    Quoth the raven, "Polly wants a cracker."

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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Weimann View Post
    Hm, I see. So would I still be paying the fate Point to him, as I would if I compelled it?
    In this instance, no because Huge is Persistent. Same as it costs him nothing to Invoke it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Weimann View Post
    AH, great. It's just I actually had such a statement in my question, and you said "no", which left me a bit flummoxed. THanks for straightening it out
    No worries.

    Quote Originally Posted by Weimann View Post
    On another note, if you don't mind: supplemental actions seem kind of strange. What determines what kind of actions you can take as supplemental actions, like, why can't I just Attack as a simple action and then Attack again as a supplemental action? Also, it seems strange that you only take penalties to your simple action; I'd expect you to take penalties to every action in the "flurry" (for lack of a better term).
    In each round you can normally perform only one main action. You can't attack multiple times because your roll doesn't represent one attack, but an exchange of blows. Thus you might also be doing something else besides (liek moving), but you can't have another go.

    An attack isn't a simple action, it's a main action. You can choose to take a simple action alongside it, which penalises the main action.
    Last edited by Kiero; 2011-03-08 at 06:10 AM.
    Wushu Open Reloaded
    Actual Play: The Shadow of the Sun (Acrozatarim's WFRP campaign) as Pawel Hals and Mass: the Effecting - Transcendence as Russell Ortiz.
    Now running: Tyche's Favourites, a historical ACKS campaign set around Massalia 300BC.
    In Sanity We Trust Productions - our podcasting site where you can hear our dulcet tones, updated almost every week.

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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    This looks intriguing. I was reading up on SotC with an eye to adapting it to a sci-fi setting. This might handle it better. One of my big concerns was equipment - making it possible for characters to choose and upgrade gear to real mechanical effect without it becoming a Christmas-tree situation. Does Strands handle that well?

    (Unoffical Eberron adaptation, eh? Hmmmm!)

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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by kamikasei View Post
    This looks intriguing. I was reading up on SotC with an eye to adapting it to a sci-fi setting. This might handle it better. One of my big concerns was equipment - making it possible for characters to choose and upgrade gear to real mechanical effect without it becoming a Christmas-tree situation. Does Strands handle that well?

    (Unoffical Eberron adaptation, eh? Hmmmm!)
    Well, SotC is essentially silent on equipment, it doesn't really matter in pulp beyond gadgetry.

    SoF has actual rules for equipment, wealth and the usual things you have in an RPG. It doesn't get down to the level of detail whereby there are different brands/models of the same thing, though.

    But there is a difference between wearing no armour, light, medium or heavy. Between using a knife or using a gun. And so on.
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    As a general point, this table might be useful for people to see how the various incarnations of FATE 3.0 differ from each other.
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by kamikasei View Post
    This looks intriguing. I was reading up on SotC with an eye to adapting it to a sci-fi setting. This might handle it better. One of my big concerns was equipment - making it possible for characters to choose and upgrade gear to real mechanical effect without it becoming a Christmas-tree situation. Does Strands handle that well?

    (Unoffical Eberron adaptation, eh? Hmmmm!)
    There are more dedicated alternates to sci-fi, such as Diaspora (for hard sci-fi) and Starblazer (for space opera). I have read neither book, only having played SotC among all the Fudge-based games, but I hear they are good, and might buy Diaspora for inspiration.
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by The Rose Dragon View Post
    There are more dedicated alternates to sci-fi, such as Diaspora (for hard sci-fi) and Starblazer (for space opera). I have read neither book, only having played SotC among all the Fudge-based games, but I hear they are good, and might buy Diaspora for inspiration.
    Like SotC, Diaspora has a freely-available SRD to check out before you buy.
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by kamikasei View Post
    This looks intriguing. I was reading up on SotC with an eye to adapting it to a sci-fi setting. This might handle it better. One of my big concerns was equipment - making it possible for characters to choose and upgrade gear to real mechanical effect without it becoming a Christmas-tree situation. Does Strands handle that well?

    (Unoffical Eberron adaptation, eh? Hmmmm!)
    If you consider Aspects to be a real mechanical effect, then yes, the gear can have those. Gear can also give you access to Powers that you'd find in sci-fi (emotion-detecting technology, invisibility fields, etc) when you do it right. However, when it comes down to it, there's not nearly as much minutiae as there are in other systems. The gear table it has is really only a suggestion, even. A good one, but I wouldn't go looking to "work on the balance" of various weapons.

    Here's an example of how you can use Aspects to "upgrade" your equipment.

    In a normal system, you would, for a set amount of money, purchase an "overcharge" upgrade that let you add a set amount of damage by expending a set extra amount of power.

    In SoF, you put an "overcharge" Aspect on the weapon, which you can tag to give you a bonus in situations where an extra-powerful blast would be especially advantageous (making a hole in a durasteel door or something), and the GM can compel it to make you go through the 'running out of ammo' dance, or possibly to just make that weapon shut down until it can be repaired. These are governed with Fate Points and only come up when someone thinks they'd be narratively interesting, not just mechanics boosts.

    Gear that gives you Powers has a similar story.

    As far as picking up new gear, well...gear that doesn't give you powers is minimally important, and also easy to get. Gear that drastically affects what kinds of things you can do (e.g. an invisibility field, a jetpack, a telekinesis amplifier, etc.) is purchased the same as your other powers, with XP. You just say that the power source is your gear. The general diversity/power of characters is very much centered around your advancement, not on some separate gear system.

    This means that you shouldn't expect characters to switch out equipment that often.

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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    I'm going to have a go at Pergamon as an Organisation. This is testing out the "bigger than a person" rules.

    The City-state of Pergamon

    The seat of the Attalid dynasty, in 270BC Pergamon is an aspiring power in Asia Minor having recently seceded from the Seleucid empire. It has an advantageous position; a good port, a fertile countryside and strong defenses.

    Influence: 5 Refresh: 4
    Organisational Aspects
    • Rich Hellenistic City-state
    • Good Governance and an Eye for Opportunity
    • Risen from the Ashes of Lysimachus' Thracian Empire
    • Secure Our Independence
    • Asia Minor is Politically Unstable


    Physical (Stress: 8)
    Logistics: 2
    Perception: 2
    Security: 3

    Mental (Stress: 7)
    Craft: 3
    Knowledge: 3
    Morale: 2

    Social (Stress: 8)
    Connections: 3
    Relations: 3
    Resources: 4


    Asset Aspects:
    • Philetairos' Gift: Nine Thousand Talents of Silver (Resources) - Pergamon's founder sequestered a vast sum of silver from the Diadochi Lysimachus before the collapse of the Thracian Empire.
    • The Walls of Pergamon (Security) - Pergamon's fortifications are amongst the most impressive of the age.
    • Powerful Navy (Security) - A large and well-trained navy polices the sea-lanes of the Aegean.
    • Patron of Athenian Arts and Culture (Relations) - In order to establish their Hellenic credentials, the Attalids are generous supporters of the arts.
    • A Centre for Learning (Knowledge) - Pergamon has a library that rivals even that of Alexandria.
    • Rivalry with Rhodes (Connections) - Rhodes also sees the Aegean as their sphere of influence and has the best navy in the world.
    • Monopoly on the Production of Parchment (Craft) - Pergamon invented parchment, a very useful alternative to papyrus, of which Ptolemaic Egypt has suspended export.



    The Seleucid Empire

    A vast and disparate collection of territories representing the majority of what was once the Persian empire. This represents the majority of Alexander's Persian conquests from Asia Minor all the way to the Hindu Kush. But it is already proving to be far too large, disconnected and divided a unit to be ruled by one monarch.

    Influence: 7 Refresh: 5
    Organisational Aspects
    • A Vast and Disparate Empire
    • Rule With An Iron Fist
    • The Bulk of Alexander's Persian Conquests
    • Hold the Empire Together At All Costs
    • Overextension, Disloyal Satraps and Treacherous Family Members


    Physical (Stress: 15)
    Logistics: 2
    Perception: 4
    Security: 8

    Mental (Stress: 8)
    Craft: 4
    Knowledge: 2
    Morale: 1

    Social (Stress: 9)
    Connections: 3
    Relations: 2
    Resources: 5


    Asset Aspects:
    • The Persian Royal Road (Logistics) - The major means of moving people and goods in the western part of the empire.
    • Alliance with the Mauryan Empire (Connections) - As a means of securing the eastern fringes, a deal was struck with Chandragupta agreeing borders.
    • War Elephants (Security) - The Seleucid kings maintain stables of war elephants, another gift from Maurya.
    • A Greco-Macedonian Urban Elite (Morale) - Control of the cities is maintained by a Greek-speaking elite who have a vested interest in the continuation of the empire.
    • Claims on the Macedonian Throne (Relations) - The royal line descends from the Macedonian nobility and thus have valid claims for the Macedonian throne.
    • The Persian System of Governance (Morale) - Maintaining the old Persian systems has enabled continuity of rulership, especially for the countryside away from the towns and cities.
    • Military Colonies (Security) - The colony system enables the empire to recruit Greek soldiers for the heavy infantry of the phalanx, rather than arming the native citizenry.
    • Two Capitals (Logistics) - There are capitals at Antioch and Seleucia-on-the-Tigris, allowing better command and control of the two halves of the empire.
    • Control of Trade from East to West (Resources) - The Persian Royal Road connects with the Silk Road and all the bounties flowing from the east.
    Last edited by Kiero; 2011-03-14 at 12:56 PM.
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    I haven't played Strands of Fate yet, but I'm eager to give it a try. I haven't tried a FATE based game yet, but I purchased the PDF and loved it. Honestly, right now I'm just spoiled for choice, I'm not sure what I want to run!

    I've been planning a zombie scenario as a way to introduce my DnD 4e players to Strands, but it's a matter of finishing it up.

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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    I do love the concept of FATE, but I've noticed that FATE tends to take what should be very simple and straightforward concepts, and make them incredibly long and complex. For instance, the hundreds of pages on stunts in Spirit of the century. So I'm interested in seeing if Strands manages to at least organize the FATE concepts so that they're easily comprehensible and organized.

    I would love to adapt my "Under the Green Moon" hard fantasy setting to FATE, but I really need a good system for making semi-humans and a faigue-based magic system. And of course I want it to be easily understandable by new players. That's why I'm interested in the Basic Fate, Free Fate, and Spirits of Chrome and Cyberspace. Somehow I may be able to mash all this together and come up with exactly what I want. Maybe.

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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Tolle View Post
    I do love the concept of FATE, but I've noticed that FATE tends to take what should be very simple and straightforward concepts, and make them incredibly long and complex. For instance, the hundreds of pages on stunts in Spirit of the century. So I'm interested in seeing if Strands manages to at least organize the FATE concepts so that they're easily comprehensible and organized.

    I would love to adapt my "Under the Green Moon" hard fantasy setting to FATE, but I really need a good system for making semi-humans and a faigue-based magic system. And of course I want it to be easily understandable by new players. That's why I'm interested in the Basic Fate, Free Fate, and Spirits of Chrome and Cyberspace. Somehow I may be able to mash all this together and come up with exactly what I want. Maybe.
    SotC's stunts are fine with me. It's some of the ridiculously complex adjudications that are bothersome.

    Anyway, SoF is probably good for you. Its system for making non-human races is kind of abstract (most of your non-human abilities are best handled as Aspects of some kind), but it essentially assumes that your magic system is some kind of fatigue-based thing. Spells that don't cost a Fate Point will always require you to resist Stress on your Physical or Mental track, both of which can represent fatigue.

  24. - Top - End - #24
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Tolle View Post
    I do love the concept of FATE, but I've noticed that FATE tends to take what should be very simple and straightforward concepts, and make them incredibly long and complex. For instance, the hundreds of pages on stunts in Spirit of the century. So I'm interested in seeing if Strands manages to at least organize the FATE concepts so that they're easily comprehensible and organized.

    I would love to adapt my "Under the Green Moon" hard fantasy setting to FATE, but I really need a good system for making semi-humans and a faigue-based magic system. And of course I want it to be easily understandable by new players. That's why I'm interested in the Basic Fate, Free Fate, and Spirits of Chrome and Cyberspace. Somehow I may be able to mash all this together and come up with exactly what I want. Maybe.
    Strands is definitely better organised than the other incarnations, and without the Stunts-under-Skills implementation either. There's a lot fewer "Stunts" (called Advantages) and there's fewer Skills (Abilities - there's twelve) here too. It also has a lot more guidance on Aspects - and not simply providing lists either. Unlike SotC, it does equipment, in the regular "tables of stuff" fashion.

    It ditches things like the adjective ladder too, things just have Ranks (usually from 0-5, with the average being 2). A lot of the special terms have gone too (instead of an "exchange" its simply the RPG-standard "round").

    Fatigue-based magic is one of the options built into the Powers system. Bear in mind that, being a generic game, it does need tailoring. However, unlike SotC, it's easy to tailor with all the options laid out.

    Have a look at the preview and see what you think, I've certainly found it a lot clearer.
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Here's a size table that didn't make it into the book:

    Quote Originally Posted by Mechalus

    1 person - Size 0
    Around 4 people - Size 1
    Around 16 people - Size 2
    Around 64 people - Size 3
    Around 256 people - Size 4
    Around 1024 people - Size 5
    Around 4096 people - Size 6
    Around 16386 people - Size 7

    So 3000 people breaks down into 3 Size 5 Units, or a single Size 6 Unit if it's easier to run that way. The numbers aren't precise, and they don't need to be. A orc is bigger than a human after all, and they're both Size 0. So 1000 orcs would be bigger than 1000 humans as well, yet they're both probably Size 5 because that level of detail doesn't matter.
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Seems like Strands of Fate is developing a strong following. I was looking for system to run an Inca/Conquisidor campaign with a dose of mysticism. At first was going to use Mini6 but the magic is spell based not mystic and I didn't want to come up with one. Then I ran across a FATE thread elsewhere, and decided that I could call my campaign FATE of the Inca.
    I looked at SotC and Diaspora but the SRDs didn't inspire me much. Didn't have Dresden and LoA, I know they have the mysticism I could use but they are specialized. Of course heard of SoF but didn't think about it till I ran across this article. Very inspiring indeed and I can use low powered mysticism as you wrote above. Now I'm planning on using SoF, hopefully my group will take to it.

    BTW: thanks for your writeup on low powered magic. I haven't delved into that part of the book yet but was thinking along your lines of limited rituals and control. Shaman rain dance to make a storm giving the terain an Raining/Wet Aspect and then Invoking that to slow down the pursuing bad guys. And then able to have the pursuers Compel the same Aspect (or Invoke?) to show the party's tracks left in the mud.

    That leads to a question. There looks to be times where there is a Create an Aspect (Discovery? or Power) and Invoking it. Like my rain dance example. Or if a player wants to take cover somewhere that the GM didn't put down. So I think they can use Discovery (is that the right term) to basically create somthing to get behind, say creating a Crates by the Wall Aspect. That takes 1 FP but do they then need to spend a second to Invoke the Aspect? My first thought was the Aspects should be Persistent so Invoking is free but I'm not so sure after reading the crates example.

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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Delwugor View Post
    That leads to a question. There looks to be times where there is a Create an Aspect (Discovery? or Power) and Invoking it. Like my rain dance example. Or if a player wants to take cover somewhere that the GM didn't put down. So I think they can use Discovery (is that the right term) to basically create somthing to get behind, say creating a Crates by the Wall Aspect. That takes 1 FP but do they then need to spend a second to Invoke the Aspect? My first thought was the Aspects should be Persistent so Invoking is free but I'm not so sure after reading the crates example.
    It's no different to maneuvers; you have to expend effort/a roll to create an Aspect from nothing. Using it is a separate action after that.

    Something else to bear in mind is that not everything has to be done with Aspects.
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    It's no different to maneuvers; you have to expend effort/a roll to create an Aspect from nothing. Using it is a separate action after that.

    Something else to bear in mind is that not everything has to be done with Aspects.
    Thanks that makes a bit of sense ... I'll go back and revue that.
    Yeah I've already thought of stuff that doesn't even make sense as an Aspect. For example a gunslinger would have Quick Draw as a Advantage, but what about the ability to shoot all bullets against multiple targets. My first thought was an Aspect but quickly realized there was no +2 or re-roll associated so it had to be an new Heroic Advantage so that a FP would be used.

    I did read elsewhere that one new player danger for FATE games is the overuse of Aspects. That could be a stumbling point for me as I haven't even seen it played. Hmmm maybe will track down a PbP and read that.

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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Delwugor View Post
    Thanks that makes a bit of sense ... I'll go back and revue that.
    Yeah I've already thought of stuff that doesn't even make sense as an Aspect. For example a gunslinger would have Quick Draw as a Advantage, but what about the ability to shoot all bullets against multiple targets. My first thought was an Aspect but quickly realized there was no +2 or re-roll associated so it had to be an new Heroic Advantage so that a FP would be used.

    I did read elsewhere that one new player danger for FATE games is the overuse of Aspects. That could be a stumbling point for me as I haven't even seen it played. Hmmm maybe will track down a PbP and read that.
    One thing to always remember in FATE is that everything tends to work exactly the same as something else - its unified which makes it simpler that it might appear.

    The Heroic Advantage Twin Arrow (p108) is your exemplar for multiple targets in one attack.

    Yeah, people tend to see Aspects for the first time and go "I can use this for everything!". Forgetting that they're the icing on the FATE-cake, not the whole thing. You can still use static modifiers and the like (or Persistent Aspects) as you would do in any other system.
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    Default Re: [FATE] Strands of Fate

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    The Heroic Advantage Twin Arrow (p108) is your exemplar for multiple targets in one attack.
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