Tabletop RPG Podcast and Roleplaying Resources

Tag: Fate

Running Dune with Fate

With the new Dune movie my interest in the setting is piqued. Here’s how I would tweak Fate to model the world of Dune’s Imperium.

TL;DR summary — these are a simple set of Fate Condensed modifications which emulate the Dune setting. It uses 2 column skills and has simple rules for Dueling and Houses.

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Stan’s Favorite Game Systems

I enjoy trying out new games, but I’ve also found that ‘mastering’ a game system often takes many sessions of running those rules. These days, I’m usually more comfortable converting an existing IP over to a game system I like and have mastered, rather than learning yet another rule system from scratch each time I run games in a new setting. Conversion does time some time, but so does learning a new system!

Anyway, with that background, here are my favorite game systems and some notes.

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Top Stuff I Want To Run Someday (Late 2023 Edition)

In a traditional dating back nine years, I like to inventory the ‘games I’m itching to run someday’. Interesting how things evolve: see my posts in early 2023, early 2022, late 2020, early 2020early 2019, 2017, 2016 and 2014 of things I was itching to run in prior years.

The big change this year is that I recently (for the first time ever!) came up with a list of my favorite game engines to use for campaigns I run. With a couple of exceptions (The One Ring and Pendragon) where there’s an amazing campaign tied to a particular ruleset, I will, for the most part, target to run my favorite systems, which at the moment are story games (Fate, QuestWorlds, and Kids on Brooms), D&D (BX D&D and D&D 5e), and d100 (either Chaosium’s BRP or d00Lite).

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Starblade Campaign Idea

I’m digging through my archives of RPG notes and ran across this paragraph — a pitch for a sci fi superheroes campaign which I never got around to running. I was a big fan of Jim Starlin’s ‘Dreadstar’ comic series back in the 1980s, and this campaign is an homage to that pulpy space opera setting. We’ll see if I ever get around to running this — I would probably use Fate or QuestWorlds as the ruleset if I did! Here’s the pitch:

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Review: Fate Core

photo 4I’ve been playing Fate off and on for about four years, starting with its earlier incarnation: Spirit of the Century. I’ve now started playing the new 3.0 version of Fate, an OGL and Creative Commons licensed version of the game expressed in both Fate Core and Fate Accelerated Edition.

First, the core elements of Fate, and why I like it:

  • Puts the focus on roleplaying and the story side of the game.
  • Works best without miniatures since you are sharing narrative control with the players, and they can actually create elements of the scene (an overly detailed map sometimes can get in the way of this player agency).
  • Has ‘Aspects’ which are phrases such as ‘Lady’s Man’ which give you rewards for roleplaying.
  • Pulp-style mechanics (for example, characters are ‘Taken Out’ rather than dying after exceeding their wound thresholds).
  • Point-buy system for skills (Fate Core) or approaches (Fate Accelerated Edition) mean players are well balanced.
  • Allows mega-quick NPC and ‘mook’ creation.
  • The ‘Fate Fractal’ allows you to stat out anything from ships, armies or planets using a simple common mechanic. Essentially you treat everything like a character, and give it flavor with Aspects.
  • Has the best genre emulations of any system I’ve seen. I’ve emulated settings such as Watership Down, Pirates of the Caribbean and Star Wars — each is a breeze to set up and run with the flavor of that setting captured perfectly.
  • Has templates for easy stunt creation (stunts are like feats in D&D or edges in Savage Worlds).
  • Has mechanics called ‘dials’ to customize the rules to match custom settings.

  • The most hackable game system I’ve every seen. Fate Core and FAE are basically ‘toolkits’ from which you assemble your own game.
  • Both Fate Core and FAE are ‘pay what you like’, even free, from Evil Hat Productions or DriveThruRPG.
  • Comes in hard copy, eBook (MOBI or ePub) and PDF.

Both Fate Core and FAE ‘versions’ are simply amazing. I put ‘versions’ in quotes because, as Fred Hicks (from Evil Hat Productions, which puts out these products) will tell you, Fate Accelerated Edition (or FAE for short) is simply a build of Fate 3.0, and compatible with Core. Of the two, Fate Accelerated Edition will be my go-to edition. In my next post I explain why.





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