Skills

Skills will be reworked considerably. First off, the Skill Pyramid/Columns that is seen in FATE games does not apply here. Go nuts! Have two skills at four, none at 3, a bajillion at two and one at one – it’s cool. We balance with in other ways.

In its place, we will be using a point-buy system for skills, where buying a skill costs its own weight in points – at character creation, this means that you’ll be buying them in order! So, a skill at +1 (Average) costs 1 point. To raise that skill to +2 (Fair) would be 2 points. To start with that skill at 2 would be 3 points.

For ease of reference, here’s the what it costs to have a skill at a given rank at character creation:

1 = 1xp
+2 = 3xp
+3 = 6xp
+4 = 10xp (this is the FATE core skill cap at creation – we’ll be ignoring that too.)
+5 = 15xp (this is the FATE hard cap, which I think we’ll use in character creation?)
+6 = 21xp (
6 doesn’t usually exist in FATE. TOO BAD, SUCKAS, WE’S DOIN’ IT!)

Here’s our Skill List. It’s bigger than many, and still growing.

So, to have the skill pyramid from FATE Core, with its much smaller skill list, it’d cost you 35xp. That’s a FATE variant that assumes you’ll gain xp and get more skills. In Nova Praxis, their 3 starting skill sets are 60, 62, and 61 sp, respectively – though they assume you’ll never learn new skills. In Diaspora, you get a classic pyramid, for 70sp, that assumes you never learn anything new. With Dresden Files, there’s a bit more variance – at 30sp/8refresh (which is where we started) having lots of low-rank skills costs you 50xp, and taking the two of each approach (to get skills at +5) costs you 70. Having 2 apex skills be expensive, yo!

So, I think that starting with 50sp or so sounds good – higher than core, but a little shy of the Nova Praxis spreads. Fear not! You’ll gain xp after every game! Right now, I am thinking 3 xp per session, in addition to all the other minor milestone benefits you’d get.

Significant milestones (which it suggests every third session or so) give you the ability to buy a new skill, albeit in a way that I feel is unsatisfying. In this system, assuming the same progression, you’d have between 6 and 9 sp accumulated by then. That’s either a bunch of little skills, or going from 0 to +3 in something. Fast progression!

We’ll be using a skill list that combines Core, Dresden, Nova Praxis, Diaspora, and whatever GURPSy B.S. I feel we should add. Hence, more skills at start than you’d normally get. Whee!

Min-Max Warning:

It’s not as good an idea as you might think.

Mainly, because it’s going to be less obvious. In D&D, a Fighter with 20 STR but 6 CON is going to die, and that’s before we talk about utility. But we’re all less experienced with FATE, so these are mistakes that we might miss. So be advised before grabbing 2 skills and maxing them – I think the dividends will be lessened. Having said that, let’s try and break FATE over our knees! :D

Stress Tracks

My current plans, as per Nova Praxis -

Every character has three stress tracks: Health, Composure, and Wealth. Each has
a relevant Skill that can modify the number of boxes in the track. Some Stunts can
modify the number of boxes as well.

  • The Health track is associated with the Athletics and Endurance
  • Composure is associated with Discipline and Resolve.
  • Wealth is associated with Assets.

Tracks start out with two boxes in them, which represents a character untrained in the relevant Skill. Each track has 2 boxes, plus a number of bonus boxes depending on your rank in certain Skills. For each of your relevant Skills ranked 1 to 2, add one additional box. For relevant each Skill ranked 3 to 4 add two additional boxes. A rank of 5 or higher adds three boxes.

Skills

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