RPGaDay is an annual celebration of tabletop roleplaying. This is the first year I’ve tried to do it.
Which RPG do you enjoy adapting the most?
This one’s easy: the game I enjoy adapting the most is Fate Core, and the related games under that banner (like Fate Accelerated Edition and various Fate Worlds and Adventures). The mechanics are straightforward and their purpose is transparent enough to see what each bit does, so it’s easy to chop and change and be confident how your changes will affect the narrative of your game. The Fate System Toolkit is great for this, and there’s a huge community online of people who are constantly taking the game apart and doing interesting things with it.
As evidence of my interest, I’m going to highlight my version of TinyFate (a minimalist Fate hack based on the work of Rob Donoghue) and the Fate of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (a TMNT hack based on PK Sullivan’s The Three Rocketeers).
I have some hopes for Cortex Prime in the future, though…
Back in September, a friend of mine ran a one-off session of TinyFate based on Super Mario. It was, incredibly, his very first time GMing an RPG and he did a great job. He’d played in one of the TinyFate Monster Mash games that I ran, and liked the system well enough to use it himself. (TinyFate was designed for new players. Turns out it works for new GMs too!)
He also made some interesting tweaks of his own to it. And despite my claim previously that I would probably remove free invokes from TinyFate if and when I updated it, two of the main tweaks for the Mario Party game were both around free invokes.
These tweaks are very cool and they’re flexible enough to apply to pretty much any flavour of Fate Core. First was the two-sided game aspect to emphasise game focus; next was a change to the rate of return on free invokes for Create an advantage actions.
After my last blog post, when I talked about using Rob Donoghue’s TinyFate and expanding it into a fully functioning game, I had a whole series of blog posts planned. My next post was going to be a write-up of the rules of TinyFate as a full game.
Before I could do that, though, I was ninja’d by Rob Donoghue himself. Rob saw my last post (awesome) and shared it on Google Plus (awesome!) and now he’s decided to write up TinyFate himself (super awesome!). He’s done two drafts so far (here’s the first and here’s the second), and it looks like a cool game even if it isn’t exactly the way that I ran it. (Rob even credits me at the end! Sooo awesome.)
As a result, I’ve decided not to write up a document for the rules that I used in my version. However, I am still going to post my rules reference that I used for the Monster Mash Meets the Martians one-shot. This is the document that I gave to my players, so it’s not a complete game. It leaves out a lot of the set up and GM’s responsibilities, which the players didn’t need to know, and some conventions were established during play that haven’t been added (e.g. the default difficulty is +2).
I think it could be interesting as a compare-and-contrast with Rob Donoghue’s version, so I’ve added some of the major differences and my review of them at the end of this post.
Without further ado, here is the rules reference for Monster Mash Meets the Martians!
Yesterday, I finally introduced some of my non-gamer friends to roleplaying. It was a long time coming. They’d known I played for a while and they were excited to try it out, but I felt a fair amount of pressure to make their first roleplaying experience fun enough so that they’d want to play again.
I think I can say that my mission was a success, and that we’ll definitely be playing again. In fact, I’d recommend the game we played as a great introduction to new roleplayers.
This is Monster Mash Meets the Martians, a TinyFate adventure.