Monday, March 08, 2010

Destined: What is it?

I'm just about done with the first full draft of the game I've been writing. At this point, it is over 100 pages, although nearly half of that is devoted to things like spells and feats - long lists of things with write-ups.

So, what sort of game have I written? Originally, I set out to create a fantasy version of Spirit of the Century (a Fate based game). Angela and I had used Fate to run a modern fantasy game, and she wanted a D&Desque version so that she could run a fantasy campaign with them. She'd used 3.5 last time, but the prep work was too intense, and she isn't keen on 4e. So, yeah. I told her I'd make her the rules she wanted. Then I thought I'd throw out some of the bits of Fate that neither of us were thrilled with and fuse the Fate and d20 systems. The end result isn't really either. From Fate, I took Aspects and Fate Points. The similarities don't precisely end there, but the feel of the game will be very different.

Some highlights:
  • The base mechanic is 3d6+skill+modifiers. Despite my love of the d12, the only dice you need are six-siders. People who love Fudge dice and Fate's ladder will be disappointed. OK. If you want to impose the ladder on Destined, it would be trivial to do so.
  • Six skills: Athletics, Combat, Lore, Persuasion, Will, and (sometimes) Spellcasting, plus the ability to have areas of player-defined strength and/or weakness within those skills.
  • Really simple, but very flexible character creation.
  • Power level gauges that reflect character strength without dictating it - useful for judging the appropriate difficulty of encounters for PCs. If you are familiar with Mutants and Masterminds, think in those terms.
  • A flexible, tactical combat system. It functions a bit like a cross between Spirit of the Century and Mutants and Masterminds... with a some resource allocation thrown in. It doesn't require a battlemat (it uses zones), it doesn't use stress tracks, it expands the idea of consequences (merging it with d20's conditions), and it includes an abstract system for gauging combat advantage. How long do combats take? I still need more data on this, but they seem to take significantly less time than in d20.
  • I scrapped the idea of a rigid social combat system. I've rarely gotten it to work well in play without it feeling very artificial. The social manipulation system in Destined is designed to have the same functionality without the structure.
So. What am I going to do with this thing?

I'm going to play it.

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