This evening I started outlining the “second edition” of FU. Actually, “second edition” is the wrong term. In my mind a second edition implies some kind of change, and quite frankly, I am pretty happy with the FU RPG exactly as it it. My plan, at this stage, is to keep FU exactly as you know and love it as it is now. That is, the exact same PDF document. I will also be writing a set of expanded rules based on the original.
Why an expanded set of rules?
This expanded set of rules will have at their core the original rules. I am intending to keep most of it as is – no point in reinventing the wheel, is there! My goal with the expanded rules is to:
- Clarify ambiguous rules or those parts of the rules not explained in enough detail
- Provide clear mechanical benefits or other tangible motivations / uses for all elements character generation and game play (e.g. relationships)
- Provide optional (“plug and play”) rules that expand the basic game or change how the game plays
- Provide example settings
This evening I went through the original rules and jotted down everything I thought needed expanding on. It ended up being 75 dot-points long! Most of these dot points will be one or two paragraphs of additional explanation, though some will require quite a bit of additional writing. There are even entire new chapters to write. In an ideal world I will be able to tackle a dot-point per night and bash the expanded rules out in a few months. We will have to see how things go, though.
So what will be in this expanded set of rules?
Below is my dot-point list of additions / changes to the core FU RPG rules. Some of the dot-points represent clarifications/examples/additions to the current rules, while others are “optional” rules to expand the way you can use FU. They are not always clearly defined in this rough draft.
I would love to hear from you if you think I have missed something, or if you have suggestions for what you would like to see in the expanded rules.
Outline of additions / changes to core FU rules
- Hit points / health and injuries
- Stats / attributes
- Making your character AWESOME
- Alternative ways to define descriptors, beyond Body, Mind, Edge and Flaw
- Defining the “scope” of descriptors
- Narrow and broad descriptors together (Why? How?)
- Descriptors as “concept”, “occupation”, “race”, “social class”, “troubles” and other alternatives
- Magic, psychic powers and other “powerful” descriptors
- Descriptor “focus” (physical, mental, social, combat, perception etc)
- Predefined descriptors; building descriptor lists
- Descriptors as Aspects
- Further detail in descriptor explanations on page 6 (“Descriptors are clear” etc)
- “Good” clichés vs. “bad” cliches
- Making gear a descriptor
- Using gear as gear, not descriptors
- Weapons and weapon damage
- Equipment and equipment lists
- Picking up equipment – “Why don’t I get a bonus for this machinegun?”
- Further detail on drives and what each is
- Drives alternatives – hooks, attitudes, troubles, goals, deal, fate
- Does this entire element become optional?
- Expand explanation further – what is the mechanical advantage?
- Provide examples of how they are used in play
- Relationships with non-player characters – contacts, dependents
- Using relationships as Narrator tools
Scenes & Turns
- Following the action with logic
- Rolling for initiative
Beating the Odds
- Are we still calling it that?
- Alternative ways to roll – polyhedrals; 2/3/4 d6; d10; what else?
- Opposed rolls
- Fate dice
- Alternative charts
- Alternative questions – degree of success; focus-based questions (combat, social, investigation, stealth, etc)
- Defining the scope of your questions before play / during play
Success & Failure
- Expand explanations / descriptions of results (Yes and…, etc)
- Conditions – expand explanation; positive and negative conditions (explain and examples)
- Details – expand explanation; positive and negative details (explain and examples)
- How long do conditions / details last?
- Expand explanation of Easier/Harder/Cancelling out
- Using the environment to your advantage / disadvantage
- How many bonus / penalty dice can I roll?
- Dice caps
- Modifier sources (descriptors, gear, enemies, environment, conditions, details)
- Limiting dice by source (1 descriptor, 1 gear, 1 friend, 1 environmental etc)
- Using FU points to encourage specific play styles
- Focus pools
- FU points to power special abilities
- Special abilities / stunts / magic???
- Starting a game
- Long or short term play? How does this affect your game?
- Character advancement – change vs. improvement
- Setting scenes, defining action
- Creating NPC’s and locations
- Passage of time – recover, dilating time
Narrator advice (page 16)
- Expand on advice on talking / listening – provide more detail and examples
- Rewarding players / rewarding characters
- Improv techniques that enhance your games
- Film techniques to steal for your games (flashback, foreshadow, slow motion, cut scene)
- Describing your scenes like a movie
- Defining the scope of combat
- Running combat – scenes and turns
- Making attacks – alternative methods
- Causing damage
- Weapon damage
- Injuries and recovery
Optional rules “packages”
- Why? Using optional rules to create tone / mood, emulate a genre or encourage a style of play
- Pure – no optional rules
- Creating your own optional rules and custom packages
Setting Outlines – not all of these will make the cut
- Space Opera
- High Fantasy / Dark fantasy
- Pulp Adventure
- Urban Fantasy / Modern supernatural
- Something ODD
And when the expanded FU rules are written?
The current FU RPG rules will remain available in their current format, for the totally awesome price of FREE (or “pay what you want” over at RPGnow). They will also stay available under the current CC licence. The expanded edition is a much bigger project and will feature art and all the other trappings we have come to expect from a roleplaying game rulebook. If I can master adobe I would like to make it an optimised PDF with all the bells and whistles. Consequently, there will be a charge for the new set of rules. How much, I don’t know – I haven’t written it yet, have no idea how long it will take, how much the art will cost, how long the final document will be or anything like that. I promise I will keep you up to date on this, and am happy to hear your thoughts, too.
I would love to hear your thoughts on what an expanded edition of the FU RPG should contain. Leave a comment below!