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Campaign Details
If the time works for all players, sessions will be held Thursdays at 9:00 PM Central US time. First session will be in a few weeks, on March 12th at the earliest.

The campaign has two Aspects:
Corrupt Empire: The objective of the party is to overthrow the twisted government that holds almost all the cards.
Enemies of the State: The characters are officially designated as terrorists, and thusly cannot easily act in the open.

Game premise here.
NPC information here.

The Basics of Fate


The Core Mechanic
Every roll in Fate uses the same math - a value, plus four Fate Dice, compared to a target number. A Fate Die is a six-sided die, but instead of numbers, it has two +'s, two -'s, and two blank sides. Each + increases the result by 1, and each - decreases it by 1. So, the average expected value from any roll is equal to the value before the dice are rolled.

If your roll is greater than the target number, you Succeed. If the difference between your roll and the target is 3 or more, you Succeed with Style. If your roll is less than the target, you Fail. If they're the same, it's a tie.

Aspects
The fundamental idea of Fate Core is that a character is defined by who they are, not what they can do. Each character is defined at heart by a small set of Aspects - short phrases, titles, or quotations that say something important about your character - Fastest Sword in the West, Manners of a Goat, Scars from the War, This Isn't Even My Final Form, et cetera. These serve three primary purposes:
  1. Aspects can be Invoked to gain bonuses to rolls - either +2 to the result or a free reroll - but only if the Aspects is relevant to the action. If I'm attacking in a one-on-one sword duel, and I roll a 3, I could Invoke Fastest Sword in the West to change the result to a 5. Doing this costs one Fate Point.
  2. Aspects can be Compelled, by you or by the GM, to make your life harder or more complicated. These are narrative problems, rather than numerical boosts. During a tense moment, I could Compel Scars from the War to trigger a poorly timed war flashback. Every time one of your Aspects is Compelled, you get a free Fate Point.
  3. Aspects guide play. In addition to generally informing what your character is about, you can Invoke an Aspect to declare something related to that Aspect to be true. If I have Everyone Owes Me Something, I could spend a Fate Point to declare that someone in the next town owes me a favor and use it as leverage against them.

Aspects aren't just restricted to characters. A scene, a location, a city, or a campaign can have Aspects, too. And the ultimate Aspect On Fire can apply to any of them.

Combat
There's a lot to combat in Fate, so I'm just going to cover the absolute basics!

Each person gets one Action each turn. Most actions you can take during battle fall into one of two categories - Attack or Create Advantage.

If you Create Advantage, you roll any relevant skill, and the target rolls any relevant skill to defend against your attempt. On a Success, you can create a special Aspect called an Advantage to the scene, representing what you accomplished. Furthermore, you (or one of your allies) can Invoke this Advantage once for free. On a Succeed with Style, the Advantage can be Invoked for free twice. On a tie, you create a Boost instead - like an Advantage, but as soon as it's Invoked once, it disappears. If the defender Succeeds, you accomplish nothing. If the defender Succeeds with Style against you, they can create a Boost against you instead.

If you Attack, you roll (probably with Fight, Shoot or Provoke), and the enemy rolls to defend (probably with Fight, Athletics or Will). On a Success, you inflict a hit with an intensity equal to the difference between the two rolls - if you roll a 3 and the defender rolls a 1, you inflict a 2-shift hit. On a Success with Style, you can choose to do the full damage, or do one shift less but also create a Boost. On a tie, defender success, or defender success with style, the results are the same as for Create Advantage.

There isn't exactly HP in Fate at all - when you take a hit, you need to use a combination of Stress or Consequences to mitigate the damage or be defeated. Stress is a pair of lists of check boxes - one track for Physical Stress (inflicted with Fight or Shoot) and one for Mental Stress (inflicted with Provoke or Empathy). When you take an X-shift hit:
  1. You can absorb the hit with Stress. To do this, you mark off the Xth box from the left on the relevant Stress Track as being used up. If the box is already marked off - for example, if you take a 2-shift hit but your 2nd Stress Box was already used to eat an earlier attack - then you must use the next box to the right of it. If there are no stress boxes to the right of that one, or if they're all used already, then you can't use Stress to absorb this attack.
  2. You can absorb the hit with Consequences. You have three slots to take Consequences - Mild, Moderate, and Severe, being worth 2 shifts, 4 shifts, and 6 shifts respectively. If you take a Consequence, then describe what happens to you, and write it down in that Consequence slot as a new temporary Aspect - the enemy can Invoke it against you once for free. You can use a combination of Stress and Consequences on the same attack - for example, if you take a 3-shift hit, then you could take a Mild Consequence (2 shifts) to reduce it to a 1-shift hit, then absorb that with your 1st Stress Box. Consequences can be healed, but stick around much longer than Stress.
  3. You can concede. You can only do this if you could have used Stress or Consequences to absorb the hit, but don't want to. If you Concede, then you can't participate in the fight any more, but you gain one Fate Point for each Consequence you have.
  4. If you can't pick any of these, you are defeated, and your character will die by the end of the scene.



Character Creation


Step 1: High Concept Aspect
Write down a short, punchy phrase that sums up what your character is about, the core of who they are. See here for some guidelines on writing a good Aspect.

Step 2: Trouble Aspect
Write down a second Aspect that represents the core conflict of your character, be it internal or external. Something I can Compel to make your life harder or more complicated.

Step 3: Backstory Aspect
Write down a third Aspect that's informed by the events of your character's life prior to the campaign. This can be left blank initially if you desire.

Step 4: Equipment Aspect
Write down a fourth Aspect that's informed by your gear - most likely related to a Teigu. This can be left blank initially if you desire.

Step 5: Free Aspect
Write down a fifth Aspect that doesn't have to be based on any specific theme. This can be left blank initially if you desire.

Step 6: Name
Write down your name.

Step 7: Skills
There are 17 available skills to put ranks into - one of these is added to most rolls you make. They are:
  • Athletics: Moving your body quickly and precisely.
  • Burglary: Stealing things, getting into places you aren't allowed.
  • Contacts: Knowing the right people in the right places.
  • Craft: Being good at making things and identifying strengths or flaws in other made things.
  • Deceive: Lying.
  • Empathy: Reading people and getting into their heads.
  • Fight: Close-range combat.
  • Investigate: Finding things out.
  • Lore: Knowing facts.
  • Notice: Situational awareness.
  • Physique: Being tough and implacable.
  • Provoke: Manipulating people's emotions, usually through intimidation or fear.
  • Rapport: Talking people into doing what you want or liking you.
  • Resources: Having money and power.
  • Shoot: Long-range combat.
  • Stealth: Avoiding detection.
  • Will: Mental fortitude.

Easy Method: Assign +4 to one Skill, +3 to two Skills, +2 to three Skills, and +1 to four Skills.
Advanced Method: Assign values as you want, but:
  • No skill can be higher than +4.
  • Your skills must not add up to a number greater than 20.
  • You can never have more skills at one rank than you have at the rank below it. Two +2 Skills and two +1 Skills is fine, but three +2 Skills and two +1 Skills is forbidden.


Step 8: Stress Tracks
You have two Stress Tracks - Physical and Mental. However, in this campaign in particular, these are quite difficult to get.

Check your Physique score. If it's +0, you don't get any Physical Stress boxes. If it's +1 or +2, you get one Physical Stress box. If it's +3 or higher, you get two. For Mental Stress, do the same, but with Will instead of Physique.

Step 9: Refresh
Refresh is the number of Fate Points you get for each adventure. Whenever the party reaches a Milestone, if your Fate Point reserve is lower than this value, it increases to your Refresh.

For now, your Refresh is 3.

Step 10: A Stunt
Stunts are special things you can do to bend or break the rules of the game, or get bonuses in certain specific situations. Look here for advice on building Stunts, and look here for a list of example Stunts. If you want to make your own, run it past me first.

For now, you can have two Stunts - one personal Stunt and one Teigu Stunt. The latter is only available while you have your Teigu on hand.

Step 11: Fluff
Backstory, appearance, personality, all that fun stuff. Give me plot hooks to sink my GMing teeth into!

You're done! Convey it to me somehow. There are a maximum of 10 slots open.

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July 2017

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