Tomorrow I will be running Fate Accelerated at Square 1 Roleplaying, a monthly event at Endgame in Oakland. Typically (for me) I decided to run something a bit off the beaten path. In this case, I decided to run OMEGAZONE.
OMEGAZONE is an card-based instant setting for Fate Accelerated, produced by Brooklyn Indie Games. Using the 56-card deck you randomly generate some traits and stunts for your character, the GM randomly generates a scenario outline, and off you go! This seemed to me to be a good alternative to pregenerated characters when running games as one-offs, and I am anxious to see it in practice.
Here’s how it works – each player draws twice from among the Character Definition cards and once from the Mutation cards. Each of these cards gives you a stunt and adds to some of your approaches. Character Definition cards also give you ideas for your High Concept (and possibly Trouble).
Example: I’m creating my first Omegazone character. I draw the following cards:
Felinid – this gives me +1 to Quick and Flashy, and +2 to Sneaky, along with the stunt “Once per session felinids may spend a Fate Point to invoke a Boost without removing it from the table.”
Gelly Blob – I get +1 to my Forceful and Sneaky, and +2 to my Careful, along with the stunt “Gelly blobs get +2 to carefully create an advantage when their lack of well-defined anatomy comes into play.”
Explosive Spores – gives me +1 to Flashy and the stunt “Gain +2 to Sneakily Attack when you emit portions of your body at your enemy.”
My Approaches come out
So I come out with a character that is essentially Choo-Choo Bear* from Something Positive.
Now all I need to do is come up with a High Concept (which could be as simple as “Felinid Gelly Blob” or something more detailed), and Trouble (“Spore leakage” comes to mind). Additional aspects can be added by the player as the game progresses.
Coming up with a scenario outline is a matter of rolling four Fate dice, tallying up the number of “+”‘s and “-“‘s, and generating a story plot line based on each from an included chart.
I roll four Fate dice and come up with two “+” results and one “-” result. Looking on the GM Adventure Hooks chart this results in the following two Adventure Hooks –
-Someone/thing wants a MacGuffin that the party has/finds
-The Party loses something important
There are also gear and faction cards to help you flesh out your scenario if you want. You can also distribute them and use them as boosts for the party (most of the gear is old “Before Time” stuff, so if you can get it to work once you are doing pretty well).
Following up on my example above, I draw once from the “Gear” cards and get a “Neutron Particle Blaster” as the MacGuffin. I decide that just to make things complicated, there are two factions involved – one that wants the MacGuffin from the party, and one that actually stole it. I get the Guardians of the Reach as one faction, and the Goblinoids as the other. Obviously the Guardians are out to retrieve this piece of old technology, but the Goblinoids have stolen it. Game on!
In addition to the card deck, Tim Rodriguez also put out a handy setting guide for OMEGAZONE, which gives additional background on the setting (surprise!), the factions, and additional uses for the card deck. I highly recommend this to go with the card deck, since the description of factions and settings on the cards is rather thin by itself. Of course, if you want to use the cards for a different published setting such as Gamma World, its easy enough to do that instead.
I am looking forward to trying out OMEGAZONE tomorrow, and will let everyone know how it goes.
*Choo Choo Bear is copyright R.K Milholland and no challenge to that copyright is intended or implied. Please do not send Fluffmodeus.