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Quick Note - The Blogger, The Emberverse and the Fate

As I've mentioned here and a few other places (In particular +Erik Tenkar's blog and +matt jackson's FAE google+ community) I am very interested in the FATE/FAE system but can never seem to get a handle on it. I don't know if it is because I'm old (go ahead and laugh everyone who played The Game in '78 before I was even born) or if I'm just too sctructure minded or a complete munchkin control freak but the lack of numbers and defined ... everything confuses me.

That being said I've gone to great lengths to read, re-read and attempt to make characters (the best way for me to learn a ruleset) with FAE. The results have been less than desirable as I've typically broken down into a jibbering mass as I've attempted to perfectly define my aspects. Seriously it is like trying to make a loophole free wish!

Anyway, I'm listening to SM Stirling's Dies in the Fire (I've also read it about three times) and I really want to explore the United States post change. I've been trying to figure out the best way to do this, revised OSR rules for a post-modern game, d20 Modern, Cortex, d6 ... the list goes on. Then I get to thinking, what defines these characters? As I'm thinking this I'm basically listing aspects (yay me!) and I think I've found the perfect system ... only one problem, I still don't get the damned system!

So inbetween The Pile, and Innsfjord I need to read FAE again and try not to become a gibbering madman!


  1. I am right there with you, man. Or at least I was.

    I had read FAE two times, read a bunch of stuff on the FAE G+ Community and other blogs, and was still have trouble "getting" some things. In fact, I still do.

    What I did was bite the bullet and run a one-shot for my normal group with the caveat that I was also learning the system. I walked them through character creation, defining things as we went, which ended up helping me out too. Occasionally I'd look something up in my overly-tabbed FAE book. Going into the game I was about 50% comfortable with the system. That made me nervous.

    So I ended up running it, having to constantly look things up, making bad rulings and so on and so forth. But you know what? Despite me thinking it was a complete rules-failure, I learned a lot. And on top of that, my players had a blast. Sure there were struggles on both sides of the table wrapping our very D&D-centric minds around, but over all it worked out just fine for the story we were playing. After the game, while I had my doubts, I felt like I knew the game about 75%.

    I still have a ways to go, but I highly suggest biting the bullet and running a one shot.

  2. "Dies the Fire" Changes the whole dynamic of the story. :)

    1. I would say so, espeically if one comes at it after the Nantuket series. Actually what I'm doing now is reading Dies in the Fire (again) while listening to an audio CD of Island on the Sea of Time (while going to and from work). It makes for amuch more cinematic and deeper picture as I'm running into Denny's brother in one right after Denny talked about him in the other.

  3. Just wanted to give you a heads-up; this post helped me crystallize some thoughts I've had about Fate and how it changes things from other games - I hope you'll find time to check it out at !

    1. Came up with an error, Antaeus. But I'll look for it and take a look. I'm glad my blog was able to help you out in some way though.

  4. I've been trying to figure it out as well, after reading stuff on a bunch of websites and the community I still don't quite get it. But I think running a one off might be the ticket.


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