Fate Core – Building a better Fate
Fate Core is the newest iteration of the Fate Roleplaying Game system from Evil Hat Productions. If you are not familiar with Fate, it is an RPG ruleset that has been used in what I suspect is a very high percentage of the most popular independent roleplaying games over the past few years including Evil Hat’s own Dresden Files Roleplaying Game, Spirit of the Century and The Atomic Robo RPG (which, unless I am terribly mistaken, is built on some variant of Fate Core). The system, generally, has always been built on modularity. It started as an mod of the Fudge roleplaying game system and uses a similar skill ladder that tells you how many dice to roll in a particular skill. Each die has plusses and minusses on it and success comes rolling more of the former than the latter (margin can also be important). Fate is also the system that helped propogate the use of Aspects (interesting or important things about your character, the bigger and bolder the better) and the use ofFate Points (usually points amassed for letting your Aspects be used against, good roleplaying or whatever else is appropriate in that Fate variation). Fate Core, it seems, is largely targeted at unifying and clarifying the system. I’ve gotten a chance to (very briefly) look through the current rules draft (you get access to the nearly-complete PDF version of the rules by giving at least $1 to the Kickstarter campaign) and it is definitely still the Fate system that you know and (love/hate). It’s a pretty massive document, covering just over 300 pages (although they are not dense pages by any means) without internal pictures (which are to be funded by the aforementioned Kickstarter campaign). I’m, personally, a big proponent of Fate as a rule system and Evil Hat does (again, in my opinion) best GM advice/gaming advice sections in the business. The writing is largely conversational and I find it easy to follow along with and read, which is a big plus in a field where it is too easy to have your games read like the technical documents they are. While you can pledge $1 to get access to the current PDF draft (nearly 100 percent of the rules will be free under OGL once the game is published), but if you back at the $10, Evil Hat has also lined up a number of digital expansions that will retail for around $5 each after the Kickstarter campaign. These include settings from Sarah J. Newton (post-apocalyptic future), Jason Morningstar (Firefighting. Because of course it is), Shoshana Kessock (Lost-style psychological thriller), Lisa Steele (real-events-based murder mystery), John Rogers (heists) and more coming as stretch goals are met. Backers will also create a (massive) playtest base, giving feedback before the game is published around March, 2013. If you would like more information about the Fate Core Kickstarter, you can go over to the Kickstarter page.