Saturday, May 11, 2013

Roll/Keep Fate II: the revenge of the Vinyard

A lot of people told me that Roll/keep with Fate Dice was a poor choice, that it was broken, and that it wasn't worth pursuing. I will probably end up agreeing with them in the long run, but for now I will continue to play with this idea. On the surface, I agree with the sentiment that straight up roll keep breaks down rather quickly. In the previous post I mentioned some writing that had been done by other people. I am also rereading Marvel Heroic Roleplaying and Dogs in the Vineyard. all of these ideas have been congealing into a couple of ideas.

Idea the first, keeping dice should be about more than just gaining the highest number on a roll. I will do this with effects. Basically your roll encompasses both the number rolled and the effect of the dice roll. In a normal situation you gain effect by counting the minuses present in the kept dice. each minus adds to the effect. no minuses is equal to a tie in effect. In a more heroic situation minuses and blanks add to the effect. Finally in an epic situation all the kept dice count toward effect. I am uncertain what will cause each level of effect at this point, but I think this will mitigate some of the weirdness that would come with a straight Roll/Keep system.

Idea the second, there needs to be a way to manipulate the pool of dice on both the roll and the keep ends. I also think that one should be able to manipulate the dice before and after the roll. I think that Fate Points are where it is at here. You can invoke an aspect to gain a die in the roll phase or keep an extra die in the keep phase. You can also invoke an aspect to set one of your dice aside before the roll. this die will act as an effect, as though you had rolled the correct symbol, but it will not count toward or against your roll total. As I think this covers using Fate Points in this system I am going to say you cannot use Fate Points to re-roll the dice.

this does put a lot of moving parts into the game. This was part of my intent. To start with a relatively simple idea and make it more complicated. However, despite its complexity I think it will be fairly easy to get. you have a two pools of variable tactile elements, fate points and dice. you add to them and take away from them manually. everything is visible right in front of you. This also means that the dice pools will have to be pretty high. I am thinking a minimum of four in the least dice pool with a minimum keep of two. I would like to max out at ten dice as more than that can get unwieldy. I think that if you advance past ten dice to roll, you gain something like a mastery from Heroquest. I will definitely need to think on this in the future. I would also like to have some numerical modifier to a roll(the way skills currently work in Fate), though I am uncertain where those will come in. I have a lot of ideas churning in this old noggin, and trying to get them to lay out flat and file in line is a bit difficult. Thank you everyone who responded to my first post on this silly idea. I hope to keep tinkering with this until it starts making a bit more sense.