This is a simple Pokémon Fan Fate adventure designed for 2-4 players early in their adventures. The story works best for low-level characters that have not yet acquired a full set of 6 pokemon nor any individual pokémon having more than 2 stunts and 12 skill points. See our previous post for more details on how our Pokémon Fan Fate game works.
Who’s That Pokémon?
The PCs start at a morning breakfast in their own campsite out in pokémon wilderness. Roleplay a little bit with the players to see how they start their day. Then have everyone roll a Notice (2) check. Those that succeed will notice a nearby shrubbery twitch with something inside that teleports away in a flash. If no one succeeds, have them see the flash of teleportation as the pokémon steals a hat or backpack or other personal possession.
If someone succeeded with a 4+, they can see that the pokémon only teleported to another bush a short distance away and that it is relatively small (about the size of a Pikachu). Otherwise have everyone roll a Survival (3) check to track the pokémon. Once they find it, following its teleportation flashes as it flees from bush to bush is easy enough.
The fleeing pokémon is a Frail Psychic Abra (Shy Teleporter): Attack 0, Defend 1, Special 1, Speed 2, and Evade 3. Teleport – Requires a Psychic aspect. For this pokemon’s movement movement, you may ignore barriers to instantly move a number of zones equal to your special. If attempting to bring others, roll a Special check with the difficulty equal to the number of characters you teleport with.
This wild Abra uses Evade to dodge attacks and pokéballs while it is running since it is not engaged in combat. Identifying the Abra while it flees is a Lore VS Evade check, with the Abra receiving a +2 while it is hiding (Staying Out of Sight is the temporary aspect). When the group finally catches the Abra or gives up on it, start the next scene.
You Fell For It
The ground that the party is standing on suddenly gives way to an enormous pit. Have everyone roll an Athletics (4) check to avoid falling in. Those that fail this check need to roll Physique against an attack of 4 to show how much physical stress they take. Appropriate mild consequences include sprained ankle, broken pokéballs, or bruises all over.
If a player has a pokémon out, they can substitute a creative use of that pokémon’s Special for their defense. For example, a Pidgey could flap hard enough to slow down the fall or a Bulbasaur could use vines to catch you before you hit the ground. Pokémon that are out of the pokéballs at the time of the pitfall can be drawn into their pokéballs as the trainers fall or take 1 point of stress rather than roll for fall damage.
When the dust settles, the group will find themselves in a tunnel about 20 feet down. Sticking out of the sides of the tunnel are bits of ruins from a forgotten civilization. A Lore (8) check reveals that this was a mystic society that worshiped psychic pokémon such as Alakazam. Any attempted check, whether failed or succeeded, reveal that pictures of an evolved form of Abra are sketched onto some of the bits of ruins.
While in the tunnel, the group can make a few checks before proceeding. Athletics (4) will get someone down into the tunnel safely, while Athletics (6) will climb someone out. Survival (2) will confirm that this tunnel was made by Digletts or Dugtrios. An Investigate (3) will turn up an empty Ancient Pokeball that is useful for catching extinct pokémon.
Note that if a trainer tries to use the Abra from the last scene to teleport anyone out, pokémon that are in pokéballs do not count for increasing the difficulty of the check. The tunnel bottom and the ground above are considered 1 zone away. And of course everyone moving with Abra has to start in the same zone as the psychic pokémon.
The Smite At the End of the Tunnel
The next scene occurs when the group moves down the tunnel. This is a one-way tunnel going down at a mild slop, so the way forward should be fairly obvious. If the group does not seem to want to head down the tunnel, feel free to lure/reward them with the sight of a Diglett that they can try to catch.
For example, a Cheerful Diglett (Tiny Ground Pusher): Attack 1, Defend 2, Special 0, Speed 2, and Evade 2. Sand Attack – Requires a ground or flying aspect. Give one pokémon a negative Sand In My Eyes boost. They may immediately roll an Evade check with a difficulty equal to your Speed. If they succeed, the boost goes away at the start of their next turn.
At the end of the tunnel, the group will discover an open cavern where a building from the ancient civilization is still mostly intact. The building is just an awning, with 4 poles at the corners to hold the roof and no walls. There is an alter there, and 2 men dressed in black studying that alter. They both have dark red R’s on their chests.
These two thugs are members of Team Rocket and are looting the ruins. If they see Abra, one of them will chuckle that the “Little scamp ran away to get some help, and this was all it could find?” They will demand that the PCs leave at once, and any further questions or hesitation will be met with one of them pulling a lever to release a wild Omanyte on the group. They also have one pokémon each that they will bring out together if the Omanyte is not doing well.
Cranky Fossil Omanyte (Rock Water Extinct Pokemon): Attack 2, Defend 3, Special 2, Speed 0, and Evade 1. Water Gun – Requires a water aspect. Use your Special skill to make a water attack. Gain +1 to this attack if the defending pokémon has a fire, ground, or rock type aspect. Take a -1 penalty if the defending pokémon has water, grass, or dragon type aspect. Defensive Curl – Give yourself a Curled Up boost that grants a passive+2 to your Defense check, meaning you can use it up for a total of +4 once. You cannot use your Special skill while you have this boost on yourself.
Vicious Flying Zubat (Poisonous Life Sucker): Attack 2, Defend 1, Special 1, Speed 2, and Evade 2. Leech Life – Requires a bug or poison aspect. You may bite a target with your Attack skill as an attack action. If you succeed, you may recover one point of stress.
Machop Bully (Thickheaded Fighter): Attack 3, Defend 2, Special 0, Speed 2, and Evade 1. Water Gun – Requires a fighting aspect. Use your Attack skill to strike a target with your hand. Gain +1 to this attack if the defending pokémon has a dark, ice, normal, steel or rock type aspect. Take a -1 penalty if the defending pokémon has a bug, flying, fairy, poison, or psychic type aspect.
The thugs themselves have 4 stress, a mild consequence each, and Fair (+1) to all their skills. They will flee if both of their pokémon are taken out or if they take a consequence.
Getting to Know Runes
Once the action has settled down, the group can examine the alter. This is actually a complicated puzzle box that team rocket was trying to solve. This box has a passive Defense of 8 in case anyone tries to smash it open, and doing so destroys whatever is inside. A Burglary (5) check will successfully open the box to reveal its contents unharmed.
If the group examines the symbols on the box or the structure with Lore/Investigate/Empathy they can discover a ritual for summoning a spirit bound to protect the area. This spirit is the ghost of an ancient pokémon trainer. Using their powerful psychic powers that they developed along with pokémon like Abra’s family, they were able to leave fractions of their spirits behind to help guide future generations.
If you want to link this story to another game, have the spirit ask the trainers to perform some great task in order to inherit the lost civilization’s ancient pokémon training secrets. They could gather a pokemon of each type, collect 8 unique crystals scattered throughout the world, or search for the spirit’s modern ancestor. Whatever fits your campaign.
If this is the end game of a one shot, the spirit will simply gift them with the contents of the puzzle box and ask them to look after the treasure and Abra. This may require a Rapport/Intimidate 2 to get any details out of the spirit about what the treasure is, and again that treasure is up to you. But we recommend it be a pokémon egg, just to get folks excited about potentially hatching what is inside. Most likely the group has gotten 3 new pokémon out of the adventure anyway.
Remember that pokémon act in place of their trainers. So even if you get multiple pokémon out, you still only get one action per turn so only 1 pokémon can do anything (unless of course you have the Team Trainer stunt or a similar ability). There are no official league battles here, so 4 players can have a 4 vs 3 fight against Team Rocket.
If a PC wants to have their pokémon make a skill check to do something that seems reasonable but is not clearly tied to any one skill, use Special. This is the catch-all for a pokémon’s unique talents and abilities. Or you can have them spend a fate point to invoke a pokémon’s aspect for a story affect.
If we get any requests to do so, we will go ahead and put out a lot more sample stunts, scenarios, and statted-out pokémon examples. But don’t forget that this is a Fan Fate game. Given the basics, you should be able to build whatever variety you wish. And please, do share your ideas.