Authors: Robert Donoghue and Fred Hicks
Editors: Fred Hicks, Lydia Leong
This document is Open Game Content, as described in section 1(d) of the Open Gaming License.
Fate is a story-oriented roleplaying game system. Though it is a full-fledged standalone system, Fate can also be incorporated into a variety of popular roleplaying systems. In this book, we present a version of Fate that has been tailored to work with Fudge, an RPG by Steffan O'Sullivan. As such, we assume the reader is familiar with Fudge, and while everything necessary to play is included, you are strongly encouraged to acquire a copy of Fudge, either at your local game store, or for free online at fudgerpg.com. Those interested in starting out immediately may wish to check out "Simple Fudge".
The most important thing to understand about Fudge is how it describes things. Rather than assigning numerical values to elements like skills it uses adjectives, which are ranked as follows: Abysmal, Terrible, Poor, Mediocre, Average, Fair, Good, Great, Superb, Epic, and Legendary. Consider: a bodyguard might be a Good swordsman but have Mediocre social skills. He'll probably win a fight with an artist who's a Superb painter but a Poor swordsman. Almost anything can be described using this ladder — an empire may field a Superb army or a spaceship may be limping by with a Poor engine.
To roll dice for Fate, pick your starting level (say, Good) and roll four six-sided dice. For each 1 or 2, move down one step, and for each 5 or 6 move up one. Let's say we rolled 2,3,5 and 5. Go down a step because of the 2, from Good to Fair, but then go up a step thanks to the first 5 (from Fair to Good) and again from the second 5 (from Good to Great) for a final outcome of Great.
Another way to look at the dice is as if they rolled either +1, 0 or -1. From that perspective, rolling 2,3,5,5 is the same as rolling -1,0,+1,+1, which is easier to deal with, since that just becomes Good + 1, which is Great.
There are special dice available for Fudge that have plus (+), minus(-) and blank(0) faces to make rolling easier, and we use them to clarify examples. These dice can be purchased at many game stores, or online through Grey Ghost Press (www.fudgerpg.com).
When the dice are rolled, there is usually a target difficulty described according to the ladder. For instance, it might take a Good climbing effort to ascend a steep wall. To face this challenge, the player consults the appropriate skill, rolls the dice, and compares the outcome to the difficulty. If the outcome is equal to or higher than the difficulty, it's a success; if not, it's a failure. The difference between the difficulty and the outcome is called the margin of success (or failure), MoS or MoF respectively. It is often used to determine how well the character succeeded or how badly they failed.
When two characters are competing in a task, they both roll; the difference between the outcomes is the MoS for the winner and the MoF for the loser. A check made against a static target is a Test, while one made against another character is a Challenge. There are a couple of rules (see "Tests and Challenges") for handling more complicated circumstances, but most of the time, this is really all there is to it.