Over the last four years, I've had the distinct pleasure of working on the Fate RPG from Evil Hat Productions. I started off writing Timeworks for one of the Fate Worlds books as part of the Fate Kickstarter and ended up being asked to join the Ennie award-winning Fate System Toolkit team just a few months later. It's been an amazing ride, and I can't imagine being a part of this industry without the Fate community. You all rock! (Especially the Evil Hat crew. Seriously, you all are amazing.)
After taking on that initial work for Fate, I sought out another couple of big Fate projects: Do: Fate of the Flying Temple (based on Do: Pilgrims of the Flying Temple by Daniel Solis) and Wicked Fate (based on Wicked Fantasy by John Wick). Both of these projects have prompted me to dig really deeply into the Fate Core mechanics, thinking about new ways to make the game fun at the table. I'm loving working with Fate, and I'm honored to get to play with such well-developed tools.
Good Ideas Everywhere
And yet... not all my ideas are a good fit for the two projects currently on my plate. It turns out that making Fate games is a lot like working in a woodshed. At the end of the day, you've got a couple of pieces that you were sure would fit with that table you've been working on for months, but it turns out they might be their own things!
And I know that there are a lot of really high quality bits of Fate goodness that are scattered across the web that also might be useful, if sometimes difficult to find. If you've spent any time on the Fate Core Google+ Community, you know that people are regularly looking for resources to make their games awesome, and we don't always have good places to send them. There isn't a single place to get short adventures, for example, or find "ready made" NPCs attached to a setting.
The Fate Codex
To collect all this awesome, we launched The Fate Codex, a mostly-monthly e-zine that will provide Fate gamers with a regular place to turn to for new resources, awesome tips, and brand new crunchy systems. Over the last two years, The Fate Codex has become the go-to place for new and old Fate gamers alike, with ideas that are easy to pick up and play and inspiring enough to intrigue old hands.
Here are a few things we're featuring in The Fate Codex:
- Quick Start Adventures that contain a short setting, NPCs and plot hooks, and pregen characters (roughly 5,000 words).
- Fate Core Essays that explain how to do exciting things with the Fate system in your local game (2,500 - 3,500 words).
- Extra Systems that can be added to your game to provide new ways for your players to engage the fiction (1,000 - 1,500 words).
- Building Blocks that give you a short character, location, or organization you can drop into a Fate campaign, complete with aspects, minions, and a new plot structure called Fronts (roughly 2,500 words)
- Lenny Balsera's take on Collaborative World Building
- Brian Engard's new system for handling Ammo in Fate
- Brie Sheldon's cyberpunk short story, Life Locked
- Mark Diaz Truman's quick start adventure, Silicon City
- Ryan Macklin's take on Survival as a Skill
- Phil Lewis's new system for handling Infiltration Missions
- Quinn Murphy's guide to adding Gameable Culture to Fate
- Mark Diaz Truman's quick start adventure, Dark Star
- John Adamus' take on Making Fate Points Matter
- June Shores' new system for handling Monster Training
- Christopher Ruthenbeck's guide to Making Magic With Stress
- Mark Diaz Truman's quick start adventure, Arcane High
- Nick Bate's take on violence in Fate, Why Are We Always Fighting?
- André La Roche's political campaign system, Campaign Season
- Encoded Systems's new dice mechanic, Momentum Dice
- J. Huston Todd's quick start adventure, The Pilots of EDEN
At first, we started with just a Quick Start Adventure and a secondary piece, but our generous backers helped us add enough pieces to the e-zine to make it a fully realized thing of beauty. Thanks to their support all the awesome bits of Fate goodness are going to find a home in The Fate Codex, immortalized for eternity... or as long as the internet holds up.
But it's not over yet! And the more backers that join us, the better The Fate Codex can be...
In fact, as more backers come on to the project, we'll continue to:
- Hire more writers, artists, and designers
- Add more illustrations
- Pioneer new ways of making Fate rock
How Does it Work?
Roughly once a month, I'll gather up all the great Fate materials we've produced for the newest issue, put them together into an e-zine (over 50 pages!) and publish a preview to all the Patreon backers directly through an update. I'll publish the issue as soon as we have it ready (by the 15th of the month).
I'm committed to making sure that this is an effort that treats writers, designers, and artists really well, so we pay market (or even above market!) rates to folks who sign on to write for The Fate Codex. All of our contributors also open up their work under the Creative Commons license so that other people can steal, remix, and reuse the ideas that we publish.
We'll release the issues for all backers directly via the Patreon system, but folks can get back issues directly for $2.99 apiece once everyone who pledges through Patreon gets their copy. We're hosting the back issues on DriveThruRPG now, so folks who come to the project late can test the waters and get caught up if they like what they see and current subscribers can keep their new issues in their DTRPG library with the rest of their RPGs.
Starting with Volume 3, we're expanding The Fate Codex to also include new features, including Codex Machina, the new Fate Codex podcast. We'll be interviewing contributors, artists, and Fate designers, as well as answering questions on air and generally talking about Fate. Each month we'll release one of those interviews for free to anyone pledging $1.99 and a full version of the podcast to folks who pledge at least $3.00. We're excited for The Fate Codex to have some new sizzle!
How Can I Help?
I'm glad you asked! First, please pledge to support the project. Every dollar helps, but at $1.99, you'll get every issue of the Codex as it's released; at $3.00. I promise to make it worth your while. If there's ever an issue that doesn't work for you, let me know. I'll refund your money and you can keep that issue. No questions asked. (To be honest, I'll probably ask you questions, but they will be like "What could we be doing better?" or "Do you have any suggestions to make this awesome?")
We've also got higher tiers of backing that include access to our exclusive Codex Machina podcast, a chance to get your Fate questions answered by our team of awesome designers, and even a pledge that gets you development time with me on your Fate project!
In addition to backing, you can:
- Let your friends know about the Codex
- Spread the word on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Google+)
- Use material from The Fate Codex at your table
- Submit your ideas for an article, system, or essay
You can also join the brand new Fate Codex Google+ Community:
Thanks for your support!
What Happens Next?
We are currently releasing issues on our mostly-monthly schedule. Pieces are rolling in, and I'm thrilled at the quality of the work. This is great stuff!
So... pledge! You'll get the next issue as soon as it comes out!
P.S. I'm shamelessly stealing this model from Epidiah Ravachol, as his Worlds Without Master Patreon has proved that there's a market for high-quality fiction, systems, and adventures delivered in an easy-to-digest PDF format on a mostly-monthly schedule. I'm thrilled that the Fate community has shown the amazing level of support that we've gotten!