Fate Lessons #2 - Tossing Death Troopers off the Cliff

In this week's Star Wars adventure, our heroes were on a mission to extract a Rebel agent who had crashed on a planet and was being pursued by the Evil Galactic Empire. It's based on the old West End Games' Stat Wars adventure "Operation: Shadowstrike" contained within Instant Adventures.

My previous post on lessons I've learned in GM-ing Fate was rather popular and I found the exercise useful for myself as well so I'm continuing that idea here.

I've had some discussions on the use of sticky notes and marking up of the map. There's one reason I do that - if not I doubt we'd be doing much with Aspects. Most of us having been gaming for a long time and are got our start with more "traditional" games. As a result, it's likely we'd totally forget what Aspects were in play - it's something I ran into playing Atomic Robo a few years back.

One encounter in our adventure wound up having a nice combination of environmental Aspects as well as created Advantages. Walking through woods our heroes spotted some Imperial death troopers before they themselves were spotted. This saw a variety of Aspects getting created by the PCs - for example, the assassin droid did not hide but rather strolled down the canyon between two low cliffs, getting the attention of one of the troopers - and creating the Aspect "droid distraction" with a free invoke.

A former clone trooper, Doha, attacked from ambush, with the Aspect "never see it coming". A former Imperial officer, Stark, took advantage of the droid distraction to slug a death trooper with a baton from behind. Seeing that he was one point of damage short of totally taking the trooper out in one hit, he spent a Fate point to invoke the Aspect "steep drop" so that the attack knocked the trooper off the cliff, the combination of the blow and killing him. Stark had intended from the start to send the trooper off the cliff - spending the Fate point added the bonus damage that resulted from this maneuver.

We definitely got a bit more traction out of environmental Aspects this adventure, something I had been hoping for. Next adventure I want to focus a bit more on Aspects being used to compel actions. We also saw how while players do get a fair amount of narrative control, danger still exists, with R2-C4 being forced to take some consequences in the battle with the death troopers.


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