Thoughts on Blades of Fate

Recently I saw an article from Rob Donoghue, the quiet man of Fate RPG design, dealing with Blades In The Dark and applying its lessons to Fate. Give it a good long read, very informative. He ends up outlining a framework for using Blades-style resolution mechanics with fudge dice, a system he calls Blades of Fate.

HIt after the break to see my thoughts on the system, including parts Rob left incomplete.

Fudge Dice

I’ve been coming around recently to systems that use symbols instead of numbered dice for discrete outcomes. It’s a lot easier to spot a + symbol in the dice pool than fish out a 6. In the future I’ll write up my ideas for using fudge dice for other systems, such as GHOST/Echo and Don’t Rest Your Head.


Success is more common in this system, but that’s fine – this is for somewhat friendlier games than those about cutthroat thieves. Trickier is the fact that it means criticals are more common, so we’ll need to make sure their meaning is very clear. Not fully unpacking that yet, but planting a flag as something to come back to.

Here I would add onto Rob’s original design by having a Critical result be equivelent to a Success With Style in Fate. You succeed and additionally create a Boost that can be freely involved once.

This is an imperfect solution, as moreso than normal Fate this can lead to a chain of boosted rolls that are good enough to generate their own boost. Will playtest this, see how badly it breaks.

The Resistance Roll

Left completely untouched is the issue of the Resistance roll, an important aspect of Blades where a player takes stress to reduce the consequences of a bad roll. This is because, as stated under Aspects, Fate Points and Stress, this is still much more Fate than it is Blades and the new Stress Pool is both Stress Track and Fate Point Pool.

Consequences can be taken to prevent taking damage directly to the Stress Pool, which means that stress can be returned to the Stress Pool by compelling aspects and consequences.

In Conclusion

This is still all conjecture of course, I plan to playlets this with my vaporwave J-Cyber Horror setting Dead Signal and hopefully get back to everybody with results and improvements.

Today’s Lesson: Steal like an artist.



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