All About Aspects: Star Wars Fate

I’ve had the idea knocking around in my head for a while to combine my love of Star Wars with my love of the Fate RPG, those of you who’ve gamed with me know that I’m a big fan of the FFG Star Wars games, I’ve played in a lot of games and ran some, all of them have been very enjoyable and I love the narrative dice mechanic used in the game.

So why bother using Fate then?

That’s a good question, and for me it stems entirely from a couple of little niggles I have, my first is that character creation in FFG Star Wars is great if you have the books and all the material in-front of you, there’s plenty of options there to keep the crunch-meisters happy but it’s easy enough so that those of us who don’t find looking things up in rule books all the time quite so compelling, can still get along with it. However, if you are a player who doesn’t have the rulebook then things become a little more difficult, it’s a lot more involved to coach people through creating a character, especially if they don’t have the facility of using some of the excellent character generation programs available for the system.

Whereas creating a Fate character is fairly simple (especially if you’re going to use Fate Accelerated like I’m planning to), the rules are available for free online and, for my money, it is a lot more easily accessible and easy on the pocket, although I appreciate that not everyone finds the Fate rules as easy to understand as I did.

Plus I think the high-fantasy, heroic, action vibe of Star Wars would work well with Fate and I’m interested to see how it would work.

Uber Simple Fate Hack

Okay, I’ve looked at a few Star Wars Fate hack and most of them pretty much started laying on additional details and systems to deal with stuff, which is understandable in a sci-fi system with extra tech and cybernetics etc, but it’s not really the simple one-shot vibe that I’m going for so here are my suggestions for a very simple Fate hack.

Aspects

You have 5 aspects as normal, they are as follows:

  • High Concept: as per Fate Accelerated Rulebook
  • Trouble: as per Fate Accelerated Rulebook
  • Species: the characters race, pick one thing the race is good at and something they are bad at, make it clear in the aspect so invokes/compels are clear.

    For example: Wookie – immensely strong and powerful but prone to berserker rages.

  • Planet/System of Origin: Where your character grew up, again pick one thing that people from that place are good at and one thing they are bad at.

    For example: Citizens of the Imperial are excellent at politicking but not used to surviving in primitive environments.

  • Signature equipment: Pick one piece of equipment that is signature gear for your character and again give it one thing it’s good at and one shortcoming.

    For example: My souped up blaster does a lot of damage but it’s prone to over-heating.

Approaches

These are chosen as per the Fate Accelerated Rulebook.

Stunts

Chosen as per the Fate Accelerated Rulebook, if someone wants to be Force-sensitive, then in addition to having their high concept mention it, they must also take a Force-sensitive stunt, this costs the same as a normal stunt and does nothing on its own but gives narrative permission to do things that otherwise would be impossible using the Force, if a character wants to be good at specific applications of Force-powers then they can take other stunts to reflect this.

Player: I want to leap over the gap between the platforms, is that possible?

GM: Normally no, but you do have the Force-sensitive stunt so I’ll allow you to make a roll to jump it.

Player: Can I persuade the storm-trooper that I’m not the person he’s looking for?

GM: Well since you’ve just strutted up to him in a rebel uniform normally no, but you are a Force-user so I’ll let you make a difficult roll to use the Jedi mind trick on him.

What about spaceships and vehicles though?

Spaceships would be genned in a way similar to mooks, they would have a couple of things they’re good at:

My tramp-freighter is a very fast ship with good manoeuvrability.

And a couple of things they’re bad at:

However its weapons aren’t so great and the sensors have only short-range.

When a person in the ship is using systems in an area the ship is good at then get +2 to their rolls, when it’s a system the ship is bad at they get -2 to their rolls.

Ships would have a stress track and consequences similar to characters but would only be affected by weapons on a similar scale to them.

Conclusion

I think this is a fairly simple way to use Fate Accelerated to run a Star Wars game, it looks okay but I’d have to see it in play to test how it really works, I might have a go at running a game with these rules in a few weeks time.


 

Circuit board tree image designed by Mastermindsro, you can see the full design here.

6 thoughts on “All About Aspects: Star Wars Fate

  1. I’d like to see how Force-sensitive as a stunt works out. It seems really powerful, but that may be perception instead of reality.

    1. I’d have to test it more before I could give you anything resembling a definitive answer Arlene, it’s my host that the refresh cost combined with the fact that it really just provides narrative justification for using an existing skill in an unlikely circumstance (you still have to make the roll at whatever difficulty the GM assigns) would make it not too powerful.

      If it is though it would not be difficult to tweak the cost of the Stunt or perhaps say that, in addition one of the characters Aspects (perhaps the equipment one) has to entirely be given over to just being Force-sensitive.

  2. Using FAE I would probably not allow any Jedi or Force sensitive characters. It would take a lot of work to define what the jedi aspects are about, what truth they define and who they can be invoked or compelled. Of course, stunts would help defining more powerful force powers.
    Still loving the WEG version of SW, I would probably use skills and introduce the three jedi skills sense, control and alter (or a similar setup) and write up exactly how they can be used in the four actions. Stunts would probably reflect the powers that draw from multiple force skills.
    Regarding space ships: Aether Sea or Deep Dark Blue have some nice ideas of how to use a party vehicle. I would probably use these in my SW hack.

    1. That’s a great idea Markus, I still have my copies of the WEG version knocking around somewhere, I’ll give them a look and see what I think. I’m fairly committed to using Accelerated rather than Core, mainly because I like Approaches (although I admit they’re not without their challenges).

      I like Aether Sea and have run it but the ship rules weren’t the best I’ve seen for Fate IMO, I’ve not seen Deep Dark Blue so I can’t really comment on that.

    1. Thanks for sharing this that’s really useful, I definitely like the two column idea for the spaceships and had been considering using the Fate Codex corruption rules myself – when I get around to doing the next iteration of my Star Wars FAE hack I’m sure that I’ll take inspiration and guidance from Scott’s document 🙂

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