Tuesday, March 31, 2009

1 page version of F#

I'm running F# later this week, and so I expect to reference it on my blog a few times. So that you don't have to go download it to know what I'm talking about, I'm reproducing the 1-page summary of the rules here.

F#: a very simple tabletop roleplaying game system.
by R. Hunter Gough, v1.1

The GM and the players are all working together to create a fun and exciting story.

Each game setting has three tag lines. These establish the theme of the game.

Each PC starts with up to three catch phrases, and up to three backgrounds.

Tag lines, catch phrases, and backgrounds are collectively called “aspects”. Every aspect has a value, and these initial aspects all start with a value of 1. Mechanically, all aspects are identical; the names “tag line”, “catch phrase”, and “background” are only there to give an idea of how those aspects should be thematically structured. The values of aspects are ONLY important during die rolls.

Each player starts each session with three tokens. Tokens do the following things:
  • A player can give the GM a token to make something unexpected but not unreasonable happen.
  • The GM or another player can give a player a token to compel that player to do something unexpected but not unreasonable in line with one of his aspects.
  • The GM or another player can give a player a token as a reward for going out of his way to do something cool in line with one of his aspects or one of the setting’s aspects.
Die rolls occur when a player is trying to do something where success and failure both have dramatic potential, or when a player is trying to do something that their character could conceivably do, but would be a major effort or minor miracle for them to do successfully. Die rolls work like this:
  1. The player tells the GM what aspect he's using for the roll. If he has no applicable aspect, he must make one up on the spot, with a value of zero.
  2. The GM tells the player the difficulty of the action, between 0 and 6, but usually around 1.
  3. The player rolls three FUDGE dice, adds them together, and adds the aspect’s value.
  4. If the result of the roll plus the aspect value is equal to or greater than the difficulty, the player succeeds. Otherwise, he fails. The severity of the result (positive or negative) roughly depends on how far the roll was from the difficulty.
When a player makes a roll using a new aspect made up on the spot with a zero value (regardless of whether or not the roll succeeds), he has the option of buying it as a permanent aspect with a value of one for 3 tokens. When a player makes a roll using an aspect he already has (also regardless of whether or not the roll succeeds), or receives a token for using one of his aspects in a clever way, he has the option of increasing its value by one by spending a number of tokens equal to the new value.

A player shouldn’t buy more than one new aspect per session, and shouldn’t improve more than one aspect per session.

The GM can also force new aspects on players -- usually a mostly-negative aspect as the result of a badly failed roll. These new aspects also start out with a value of one. As above, though, the GM shouldn’t force more than one new aspect on each character per session.

Aspects (especially the mostly-negative ones imposed by the GM) can change or even go away with enough time, explanation from the player, and/or expenditure of tokens. Of course, players can also figure out ways to turn mostly-negative aspects into advantages, and even increase their values.

That’s everything you need to play, all in only one page!
I have not asked permission to reproduce that page, so there's a chance the original author will make demands that I take this down, apologize, compose epic poetry celebrating his greatness, wear my underwear on my head for a month, or something reasonable like that.

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