Fudge Points Based on Fate Points

In Fudge RPG Fudge points are a formal mechanism to allow players to “just fudge it!”. Fudge RPG has some recommendations for how Fudge points are gained and how they can spent. Fate RPG takes the concept further with its Fate points. Here is my take on what a more Fudge would look like with some of the Fate point mechanisms used for Fudge points.

Aspects, Attributes, Gifts and Faults

In terms of Traits Fate only has skills and aspects. The aspects replace the attributes, gifts and faults of Fudge. Since this page is about Fudge, not Fate, I’ve retained attributes, gifts and faults throughout, but there are some changes.

Attributes aren’t mentioned below because they involve a roll to succeed. And, in Fate, if you roll you don’t have to spend a Fate point to achieve the effect.

So I’m only concerned with Gifts and Faults. Gifts are a generally good Aspect – providing in game benefits. Faults are generally bad Aspects that potentially cause problems, but if they do the character earns Fudge points. It is this feature that makes Faults an advantage in the game. So in character creation a Fault is purchased in the same way, for the same cost, as a Gift. This is a major change from vanilla Fudge where taking a Fault allows the character to buy another Gift. In this Fudge variant taking the extra Fault would prevent taking a Gift as they are the same price.

it is also possible in certain situations that a Gift might cause a problem, so treat it like a temporary Fault with the chance to earn Fudge points. Similarly for Faults; if a fault can provide an in-game benefit, the pay a Fudge point to get it.

Gaining Fudge Points

There are only two ways to gain Fudge points: experience and accepting trouble from a fault.

Gaining Experience

Experience points are generally awarded to players at the end of each session. Generally one Experience point buys three Fudge points. So you could leave out the middle man and just award Fudge points instead of Experience points. Perhaps 1 to 3 fudge points per session.

Accept Trouble from an Fault

Players earn a Fudge point when an fault creates a problem for them. Actually, when an fault might create trouble, the player has a choice:

  1. Spend a Fudge point to ignore the fault and avoid the problem
  2. Earn a Fudge point by acting in accordance with the fault and thus accepting the problem

Here are some examples of how an fault can complicate a character’s life:

  • limit actions and choice
  • introduce an unexpected twist
  • mandate certain consequences, such as automatically failing at a particular action
  • add a complication “offscreen”

Both the GM or the player can flag up problems related to an fault. For example:

  • When the GM sees that a PC’s fault could cause a difficulty, the GM explains this to the player and offers the player the choice to accept or reject the problem.
  • When the GM sees that a PC’s fault will cause a difficulty in the future, the GM offers the player a Fudge point without explanation. The player can still accept or reject the offer but doesn’t know the full context including the specific fault or the nature of the problem.
  • When the GM uses a PC’s fault in planning a session, e.g. the character’s personal nemesis featuring as the villain, the GM will reward the player a Fudge point after the session.
  • When the player sees that one of their character’s fault could cause a difficulty, they explain this to the GM and get the choice to accept or reject the problem.
  • When the player plays to their fault during the game and reminds the GM after the fact. If the GM agrees the player experienced difficulties as a result then the player gets a Fudge point.

Spending Fudge Points

Fudge points can be viewed as small “votes” you can cast to get the story to go your way, within certain guidelines. You can spend Fudge points in several ways.

Buying Experience Points

Three Fudge points buy one Experience point. And Experience points can, of course, buy new or improved Traits.

Cancel Fudge Point Spent by another Character

At the cost of a Fudge point you can cancel someone else’́s expenditure of a Fate point. Both Fudge points are spent, but the person who spent the original point may spend another point to try again. This process can repeat as many times as people are willing to spend the points.

Make a Declaration (or Potent Declaration)

For the price of a Fudge point you can exert minor narrative control of the situation anddeclare something true in the game. Broadly speaking, declarations allow players to introduce facts into the setting and storyline. Common uses for this include

  • finding a convenient item,
  • knowing someone in a particular town, or
  • showing up at just the right moment in another scene.

The GM has to agree and is likely to agree only if the change is reasonable, has interesting consequences, is cool and/or is funny. “Reasonable” in this case means it doesn’t drastically change the plot or win a scene.

The GM is more likely to agree if the declaration is in keeping with a Gift or Fault. In this case the player can get away with more. The scope of a declaration can be more potent or, from another angle, make the less plausible more plausible. Examples:

  • the GM will usually balk at letting a character spend a Fudge point to have a weapon after he’s been searched. However, if you can point to your “Always Armed” Gift, or describe how your “Distracting Beauty” Gift kept the guard’s attention on inappropriate areas, the GM is likely to give you more leeway.
  • a player could invoke a Secret Organization Gift to declare that the group has a chapter in town.
  • if the GM is inclined to hem and haw over whether or not the character can spend a fate point to declare that he arrives at the exactly right moment, invoking the character’s Perfect Timing or Grand Entrance Gift for that same effect should remove any of the GM’s doubts.

Reject Trouble from an Fault

Players spend a Fudge point to avoid trouble arising from of their faults. Generally, when an fault might cause a problem, the player has a choice:

  1. Spend a Fudge point to ignore the fault and avoid the problem
  2. Earn a Fudge point by acting in accordance with the fault and thus accepting the problem

Benefit from Gift

If a Gift is applicable to a situation, spending a Fudge point grants a bonus to the player. After you have rolled the dice, you may pick one of your Gifts and describe how it applies to this situation. If the GM agrees that it’s appropriate, you may spend a Fudge point and do one of the following:

  1. Reroll all the dice, using the new result, or
  2. Add two to the final die roll (after any rerolls have been done).

You may do this multiple times for a single situation as long as you have multiple Gifts that are applicable. You cannot use the same Gift more than once on the same skill use, though you may use the same Gifts on several different rolls throughout a scene, at the cost of one Fudge point per use.

Benefit from another character’s Fault

If a player knows another character has a fault, they can spend a Fudge point to invoke the fault. The result is some benefit to the player. Otherwise this works in exactly the same way as a Benefit from a Gift.

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