Cautious Dwarven Runepriest

Cautious-Dwarven-Runepriest-PatreonThe Cautious Dwarven Runepriest was the second fantasy character we created a few years ago for what would become Fantastic Fate Resources. Just like the Audacious Human Battlemage, we were inspired by one of  Printable Heroes’ fantastic paper miniatures, but apart from the addition of Fate Core stats, the Runepriest hasn’t undergone any major changes.

Just like with last month’s Battlemage, the Dwarven Runepriest uses magic. Unlike the Battlemage though, we linked the Runepriest’s magical ability to the Lore skill for the Fate Core version. We imagined the character gaining their magical ability through prayer and study, and that seemed a good fit for Lore.

The defensive nature of the character also meant that not being able to attack with Lore wouldn’t be a problem, as it would be for the Battlemage. Instead of fireballs and explosions, the Runepriest’s spells create magical shields for themselves and their allies, represented in game terms by aspects. The Wards and Sigils stunt grants a bonus to this action, reinforcing the character’s flavor and purpose. It’s worth pointing out that there’s nothing stopping the Runepriest from using their spells offensively to hinder or curse opponents, they simply won’t get a bonus when doing so.

The links for the Cautious Dwarven Runepriest on the front page under Resource Catalogue have been updated, or you can grab the A4 sized version here and the letter sized version here.

We’ll continue to post updates like this when heroes and monsters released prior to the Patreon page have been updated to include both Fate Accelerated and Fate Core stats.


Just a reminder, these resources are made possible thanks to the supporters of the Fantastic Fate Patreon page. Patrons get new resource packs a full month before they’re released to the public, get to vote on the theme of upcoming monthly sets, as well as help make decisions regarding the stats and presentation of antagonists.

Cautious Dwarven Runepriest

Cortex Fridays: Runepriest, Druid, Umber Hulk, and Basilisk

Welcome to the first Cortex Fridays post! Last Saturday I said that I’d start making Cortex Prime versions of the fantasy adventurers and monsters on this blog. I’m still not entirely sure how I’m going to organize things, but for the time being I’m going to try and post two adventurers and two monsters every Friday: one of each will be from an older post, and the other will be from the current week. That’ll allow the Cortex Prime content to eventually catch up with the Fate Accelerated content, at which point each Cortex Friday post will just be that week’s monster and adventurer. So let’s get started!


Dwarven Runepriest

Dwarf_Runepriest

Distinctions:

  • Cautious Dwarven Runepriest
  • By the Will of the Forgelord
  • Solid As Stone

Approaches:

  • Careful d10
  • Clever d6
  • Flashy d8
  • Forceful d8
  • Quick d6
  • Sneaky d4

Roles:

  • Holy One d10
  • Mage d6
  • Scoundrel d4
  • Warrior d8

Note: For both Approaches and Roles, a d10 may be split into either 2d8 or 3d6, and a d8 may be split into 2d6.

Specialties:

  • Smithing (Warrior) d6
  • Stonecraft (Mage) d6

Note: Specialties may only be included in a dice pool when the listed Role die is also included, unless the player spends a plot point.

Signature Assets:

  • Dwarven-forged Heavy Plate Armor d8
  • Rune-scribed Heavy Warhammer d6

Stunts:

  • Defensive Fighter: Because I fight defensively, if I include Careful in my dice pool and achieve a heroic success when defending against a physical attack, I may turn my effect die into a Wide Open complication attached to my opponent.
  • Unrelenting: Because I am relentless in my advance, whenever a trap or
    opponent attempts to create a complication hindering my mobility, such as
    Slowed or Net Trap, I may step up my Forceful die when opposing.
  • Wards and Sigils: Because I can scribe runes of protection, I may double my Careful die whenever I create or step up assets on myself or my companions representing magical defense or shielding.

Vigilant Minotaur Druid

Minotaur_Druid

Distinctions:

  • I Must Halt Civilization’s Advance
  • Hurloon Tribe Stone-Caller
  • Ridiculously Bull-Headed

Approaches:

  • Careful d10
  • Clever d8
  • Flashy d6
  • Forceful d8
  • Quick d6
  • Sneaky d4

Roles:

  • Holy One d10
  • Mage d6
  • Scoundrel d4
  • Warrior d8

Note: For both Approaches and Roles, a d10 may be split into either 2d8 or 3d6, and a d8 may be split into 2d6.

Specialties:

  • Astrology (Holy One) d6
  • Earth Magic (Holy One) d6
  • Stonecraft (Mage) d6

Note: Specialties may only be included in a dice pool when the listed Role die is also included, unless the player spends a plot point.

Signature Assets:

  • Ironbark Quarterstaff d6
  • Ironbark Buckler d6

Stunts:

  • Burden of Stone: Because my counterstrikes magically weigh down my opponents, whenever I succeed in defending against a physical attack and included Careful in my dice pool, I may convert my opponent’s effect die into a Weighed Down stunt asset.
  • Hymns of the Earth: Because I can raise spires of rock from the ground with my song, I add a d6 and step up my effect die by +1 when including Clever in my dice pool to create or step up assets related to rough, impassible or hazardous rocky terrain in my or an adjacent zone.
  • Thunderhoof Charge: Because I hit with the strength of an avalanche after building up momentum, I may double my Forceful die to attack with my horns as long as I moved at least one zone before attacking.

OK. I hadn’t really meant to put notes on these entries, as four characters makes the post pretty long already. But I feel the need to clarify that I’m still feeling things out with the Cortex Prime versions of the monsters. Major NPCs are meant to be built with the same pieces as PCs (distinctions, attributes, skills, and signature assets/specialties if you’re using the “standard” Cortex Prime pieces). But I’m using approaches and roles for the heroes, rather than attributes and skills. It makes sense for the monsters to have approaches, but unless they’re intelligent, the holy one / mage / scoundrel / warrior roles that PCs have don’t really fit.

But as major NPCs should have similar number of “dice buckets” to the PCs,  I suppose I could use behaviors instead of roles. Something like brute / controller / lurker / reviver, to help reinforce how the monster acts. Does it wade heedlessly into battle? That’s brute. Does it toss out effects that make things more difficult for the heroes to deal with? Controller. Hang back and harry the PCs directly but run from a fair fight? Lurker. Reinforce its monstrous allies rather than directly engaging the heroes? Reviver. (MMOs aren’t really to my tastes, but you can see I’m borrowing some of their terminology here.) I think that sounds pretty good, so let’s go with that for now.


Umber Hulk (Major NPC):

Umber_Hulk

Distinctions:

  • Large Gorilla-Beetle Hybrid
  • I Must Gorge on Humanoid Meat
  • Subterranean Juggernaut

Approaches:

  • Careful d4
  • Clever d6
  • Flashy d4
  • Forceful d12
  • Quick d8
  • Sneaky d8

Roles:

  • Brute d10
  • Controller d8
  • Lurker d4
  • Reviver d6

Specialties:

  • Burrowing (Forceful) d6

Signature Assets:

  • Steel-Hard Chitin Plates d8
  • Super Sensitive Antenna d8

Stunts:

  • UMBER HULK SMASH!: Because I am an insectile engine of destruction, I may double my Forceful die when attempting to overcome physical obstacles that can be smashed through.
  • Sharp Digging Claws: Because I have claws sharp enough to burrow through solid stone, I add a d6 to my pool and step back the highest die in my pool by one when making an attack. If the attack is successful, I step up my effect die by one.
  • Mind Scrambler: Because I have a hypnotic gaze, I may double my Sneaky die whenever I create or step up a complication representing my mind scrambling effects, such as Confused, Dazed, or Hypnotized.

Scale:

The Umber Hulk is a Large creature (weight 2). It adds a d8 scale die to its dice pool and keeps a third die in its total when acting against opponents that weigh less than it does. Two Medium creatures (each weight 1) or four Small creatures (each weight 1/2) must engage the Umber Hulk at once to negate the scale die bonus.


Stone-Eyed Basilisk (Major NPC):

Basilisk

Distinctions:

  • Medium Magical Lizard
  • I Must Add To My Den’s Statuary
  • Incredibly Slow Metabolism

Approaches:

  • Careful d8
  • Clever d6
  • Flashy d6
  • Forceful d10
  • Quick d4
  • Sneaky d8

Roles:

  • Brute d4
  • Controller d6
  • Lurker d8
  • Reviver d4

Specialties:

  • Lying in Wait (Sneaky) d6
  • Extremely Robust Digestive System (Forceful) d6

Stunts:

  • Cunning Ambush Predator: Because I attack from ambush, whenever I include both my Sneaky die and an asset related to concealment, such as Buried, Disguised, or Hidden in my dice pool on an attack, I keep a third die for my total.
  • Paralyzing Gaze: Because I can turn creatures to stone by locking eyes with them, I can include my Forceful die in a roll to create a Slowly Petrifying complication on an opponent at any distance, as long as we can both see each other. In addition to creating the complication, a success begins the Stone Curse effect for that character (see below).

The Stone Curse

At the beginning of the basilisk’s turn, each Slowly Petrifying complication automatically steps up. If it would step up past a d12, the character is taken out of the scene and the complication becomes Totally Petrified d12.


The character and monster illustration are the free paper mini made by Printable Heroes. The free versions are backless, but if you support the Patreon at just $1 a month you get minis with backs. For $2 a month you get access to “reskins”, and for $3 a month you get multiple color options. That’s a fantastic deal.

Cortex Fridays: Runepriest, Druid, Umber Hulk, and Basilisk

Wednesday Warriors: Half Elf Cleric

Towards the beginning of the month I got a request on Twitter to make a cleric. Along with the fighter, the thief, and the wizard (and perhaps the bard), the cleric is a classic Dungeons & Dragons fantasy archetype. But I was somewhat hesitant to make one. Part of that reluctance was because I’d already made a Dwarven runepriest, which I rather envision being like a cleric. I also have a Tiefling crusader that will be posted in the coming weeks. But a bigger part of my reluctance was due to how Fate handles damage and injury.

In Fate, damage and injury, whether physical, mental, or something else, is represented by stress. Stress is temporary damage; fatigue, bruising, embarrassment, or something else, depending on the source of the attack. Characters have stress boxes, and mark off a box or equal or greater value to the stress they suffer. Regardless of how much stress a character takes though, it all goes away after they’ve had a chance to catch their breath and relax, usually at the end of the scene. If a character is dealt stress but the player can’t mark any of their stress boxes to absorb the, they get taken out of the scene. That means their opponent gets to decide what happens to them, and in a Fate fantasy game that’s inspired by D&D and Pathfinder, getting taken out probably means the character is killed. Or at the very least captured.

Characters also have a number of consequence slots. A player can mark a consequence slot to absorb a number of points of stress; 2 for a mild, 4 for a moderate, or 6 points of stress for a severe consequence. Unlike stress boxes though, consequence slots don’t clear so quickly. Mild consequences clear after a whole scene, moderate after a whole session, and severe after a whole scenario. On top of that, consequences are aspects that can be invoked and compelled like any other. But as consequences are aspects, a player will earn a Fate point when an opponent invokes them, or someone compels them. They are part of the Fate point economy, and allowing players to clear Consequences too quickly deprives them of those Fate points.

I’m discussing all this because one of the most common abilities of D&D style fantasy clerics is the power to heal injury. Emulating that in Fate was causing me problems given how stress and consequences work, so I just avoided making a cleric. But I’m never one to turn down a (reasonable) request, and I think I found a decent solution.

The Lay On Hands stunt allows the cleric an attempt to overcome the target’s consequence. If successful, rather than being completely removed, the severity of the consequence decrease by one level. Severe to moderate, moderate, to mild, and mild to gone. The difficulty to reduce the consequence increases with the level of the consequence being healed, and the stunt costs a Fate point to use. With a Fair Careful approach , the cleric will more than likely succeed at clearing a mild consequence, will need to invoke an aspect to reduce a moderate consequence, and will need to invoke several aspects or have help to reduce a severe consequence.

It’s an expensive stunt to use, but I feel that’s necessary to prevent the cleric from being able to completely heal people multiple times a session. Players choose when to take consequences, and like anything in Fate, aspects chosen by the player are things they think are interesting. They should hang around for a bit so players get to make those choices matter.

 


Half Elf Cleric

High Concept: Resolute Half Elf Celric
Motivation: I Must Succor Those in Need
Aspect: Born Amid the Boughs of Brambleholme
Aspect: Trained at the Temple of Nitria
Aspect: Steel-shod Holy Staff of St. Pachomius

Approaches:

  • Careful: Fair (+2)
  • Clever: Mediocre (+0)
  • Flashy: Fair (+2)
  • Forceful: Good (+3)
  • Quick: Average (+1)
  • Sneaky: Average (+1)

Stunts:

  • Front-line Faith: Because I am a capable melee combatant, whenever I Forcefully defend against a physical attack, I suffer one less stress.
  • Lay On Hands: Because I magically knit the flesh of my allies with a touch, I can spend a Fate point to Carefully overcome a Consequence representing physical injury on another character. The opposition is equal to the level of the Consequence (2, 4, or 6), and if successful, the Consequence’s severity is reduced by one level, or cleared if Mild.
  • Turn Undead: Because I can channel divine light, I can Flashily create an advantage on every Undead character in my zone, giving a Disrupted, Panicked, or Weakened aspect to each defender I succeed against.

Stress: ▢ ▢ ▢
Consequences:

  • Mild (2):
  • Moderate (4):
  • Severe (6):

You can download the Resolute Half Elf Cleric as an A4-sized PDF or a letter-sized PDF.

Resolute_HalfElf_Cleric_A4

The character illustration is the free paper mini made by Printable Heroes. The free versions are backless, but if you support the Patreon at just $1 a month you get minis with backs. For $2 a month you get access to “reskins”, and for $3 a month you get multiple color options. That’s a fantastic deal.

Wednesday Warriors: Half Elf Cleric