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Con Gone Wrong

Got another Fate Core adventure for you today. This one takes place in a casino setting, assumed to be modern times and technology but easily adjustable to fit what you want. The adventure is a fun way to meet a new NPC contact that you know has information you want.

Prelude: Tracking Down Mister X

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The party needs a piece of information to continue their quest. This could be security codes, blue prints, a list of names that are friends of Carlotta, or a secret formula for hair tonic. Whatever they need, they do not yet have the information. So they have to track down who does.

Have the group do their thing. A Contacts (3) check pulls up someone that has heard about Mister X who might know what the group needs. An Investigate (3) finds that Mister X has some hefty security moving to and from the office. A Burglary (3) check reveals that his home is also state-of-the-art secured and would be difficult to break into. Each of these checks will also reveal Mister X’s one true passion: gambling.

The party can track Mister X to his favorite Casino, the Tipsy Unicorn, where he leaves his security at the car so as not to attract too much attention to himself. If the party wants to participate in some gambling activities, feel free to reference our past article on The Gambler’s Hall for ideas.

Getting Mister X to talk requires some effort. The group first needs to get his attention. Then they need him to compromise his morals. Finally, the need to receive the needed information from him.

Step 1: Getting Some Attention

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Player Control

The biggest difference between a GM and a Player is how much control they have over the story. Now a good GM will allow the players to influence the game’s backstory and populate the world with their NPCs. But even then, the majority of the game is something that the GM has control over. They decide which rules to follow, what plot each session will face, and what opposition the players will face.

In real life, we do not have any control of any of those things. Not really. We can try to influence them as best we can, but when it really comes down to it we do not have control of what happens to us, what rules we have to follow, or what new twists will come into our lives.

This makes playing RPGs an excellent place to learn, from experience, just what control we do have in our lives and what we can do with that control. Yes, games really are a place to learn things that can be applied to real life. Who knew?

What We Have Control Of

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The Power That’s Inside (Pokémon Fate)

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

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Your First Fate Adventure

As the name might imply, this is an adventure designed to springboard a campaign and introduce people to your gaming world. It is especially useful for getting people that have very little experience with RPGs but want to learn, as they will be able to relate to the characters easily. It can be used as a one-shot adventure, but the players are likely going to want to continue if things go well.

The premise of this adventure is simple. The player characters are all very young adults (or almost adults) that have grown up on stories of adventures and want to experience their own stories for whatever reason. Their character sheets start out very ordinary and mundane, but hopefully between the drive of the players and the experiences of their first real adventure, they will come out being quite fantastical.

The Cast

Have the player characters pick an aspect from each of the categories listed below to build their character. Skill points and stunts listed with that aspect are also added to the character when they choose it for their own. It is, in my experience, a fun way to ease new players into character building. But if you do not think it is a good fit for you or your group, feel free to pre-assemble starting characters beforehand.

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How to Prepare Your Very First Tabletop RPG

One of the hardest places to start gaming is at the beginning. Our hobby is very intimidating from the outside, especially to people that really want to get in. There are so many systems, so many rules, and so much riding on that first adventure.

Today we are offering some advice for those of you that have never run a game before as a Game Master (or Dungeon Master or Beloved Master or Storyteller or Referee or whatever else you kids call it these days). We want to offer some practical advice, and a LOT of encouragement, to get you to try something new and include/make some great friends.

Please believe me, as someone who waited 10 years to finally cross the fence, the other side, that it is SO worth it. Tabletop RPGs are even more fun than they seem, and while not every minute of every campaign will be perfect the rewards far outweigh the fears. Hopefully the thoughts below can help you start gaming with your friends.

Why Write This Post?

I was recently looking at old YouTube blogs I had subscribed to, and in one of them the blogger said something that really hit home. She also thought that she and her friends would really enjoy getting into a tabletop rpg, but she had no idea where to begin. How could they get started?

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Social Combat in Fate games

Fate games offer wonderful mechanics for diverse combat situations, especially when you consider that they can apply to more than gun fights and tavern brawls. Social combat, for example, has an entire dynamic to it that most other systems limit to a single skill check or at most a contested challenge of skills. In Fate games like Dresden Files and Spirit of the Century, social combat can have lasting consequences that mechanically affect your character.

Now Social Combat technically works the same as physical combat, but my experience is that many players and GMs struggle with that aspect of the game and often overlook it. Perhaps we are more comfortable with physical combat because we have more experience with it thanks to tabletop and video games. Or perhaps we are afraid that our characters will not have much to do in social combat. Or maybe many of us assume that social conflict is boring.

You may be reading thinking none of those things, and that is great! Either way, we’re gonna take a look at Social Combat and simplify it down to the basics. Then we can talk a bit about how to build some exciting encounters with those basics.

Social Attacks

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Introducing: Fate Combat with Dresden Files RPG

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all ages, allow me to introduce to you, directly from Evil Hat Productions, something you will never see anywhere else. There are no hit points, no multi-sided dice, and no automatic bonuses for flanking. That’s right! We have here for you today the one, the only, Fate Combat rules!

And boy oh boy, are they different!

Introducing someone to Fate Core, or any branch of Fate, is considerably easier than getting them into some other RPGs out there. Especially people that have never played a tabletop RPG before. But times are changing. RPGs are getting more popular <insert happy dance>. And people that are coming to learn Fate are rarely blank slates. These are people that have learned to game with D&D, Pathfinder, Dragon AGE, and World of Darkness.

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The Fate system is a mechanical balance of dice rolls and storytelling. A lot of those mechanics are very different than other game systems. That is great when you are playing the game, but it does make it hard to learn how to play when you expect something similar to the last RPG you learns. So today we are going to look at those comparative differences and hopefully make the switch a little easier.

We are actually using the Dresden Files for today’s example because it is still a very popular Fate system and because it covers a lot of things that Fate Core considers ‘extras’ but are still showing up in printed content. If you want to get into the Dresden Files RPG, it is a great setting for modern fantasy fun!

What Looks the Same

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Star Trek Fate: Species

The universe of Star Trek is filled with a diverse number of species. While not all of them have had significant screen time, many of them have had enough where we can get an idea about the traits of that species. Here, I try to capture these traits in my FATE core version of Character sheets.

If you aren’t familiar with FATE core, it is an RPG system that focuses on character Aspects and Skills.  You can find out more here:

http://www.evilhat.com/home/fate-core/

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