Shimmering Kingdoms FATE
This section is used for creating organizations. Your character may spend either a regular Aspect or a Specialty Aspect to define themselves as a member of any organization in the campaign. If you choose to create an orginazation (using the rules below), you must assign one of your main Aspects to represent being an influential member of the orginization.
What is an Organization?
An Organization is a group of several individuals who act to further the same goals. This might be the local police, a corporation, an army, a town, a city or even an empire. It consists of both the people who make it up and its physical presence in the form of land, buildings and other assets.
Actions taken by the Organization as a whole are generally dealt with on the Campaign Scale.
Steps of Organization Creation
1. Think about your Organization’s concept and pick out a cool name for it.
2. Determine the Organization’s Influence Level
3. Select five Organization Aspects.
4. Purchase the Organization’s Skills.
5. Select a number of Stunts equal to its Influence +2
|Influence||FP/Refresh||Skills (Max)||Sample Membership|
|1||—||—||A Unit, ranging from 4 to 12 individuals|
|2||3||18 (3)||A small local company, large club, town‐wide cult or minor noble house|
|3||3||20 (4)||A small national company, influential noble house, small town|
|4||4||22 (5)||A national club or regional organized religion|
|5||4||25 (6)||A national corporation, world‐spanning cult, port city|
|7||5||31 (8)||A national capital or large international conglomerate|
|8||5||35 (9)||A multi‐continent spanning empire, or multi‐world corporation|
|9||5||39 (10)||A multi‐system spanning empire or mega‐corporation|
|10||6||45 (11)||A galaxy‐spanning empire|
Step #1: The Organization’s Concept
Just like with a character, the first step in creating an Organization is to sit down and think of a solid concept. And as with a character, this will depend largely on the setting you are going to be playing in and the genre(s) you’re taking inspiration from.
In a fantasy game, you might have knightly orders, secret cabals of witches, merchant guilds, small towns, trading hubs, or the like. While a lack of mass communication tends to result in smaller non‐governmental Organizations, it’s certainly possible to have continent spanning empires.
In a sci‐fi or modern game, your Organizations might be the local police, a street gang, an organized criminal syndicate, a corrupt corporation, a global government or a system spanning empire.
Step #2: Influence
An Organization’s Influence fills a bit of the same role in creating Organizations as the Campaign Power Level fills in creating individual characters. It establishes a baseline for the Skills, Aspects, and Advantages the Organization has. In addition, the Organization’s Influence is also used to determine the number of people involved with the Organization. See the table above for more.
Also, in the case of an individual attempting to take on an Organization, the individual is considered to have an Influence of 0. Units have an Influence of 1.
Step #3: Determine Organization Aspects
Organization Aspects serve the same role for Organizations that Character Aspects serve for characters, they define what the Organization is, what it does, and where its influence lies.
As with characters, one Organizational Aspect is a Defining Aspect which is used to define what type of Organization it is. The other Organizational Aspects tend to answer other questions about the Organization.
Sample Organization Defining Aspects
◆ Multinational Banking Conglomerate
◆ The Small Town of Willowbrook
◆ High‐End Electronics Developer
◆ The Heart of the Black Market
The Organization Aspect Alphabet
Like the Character Aspect Alphabet, this can be a useful guideline when trying to come up with Aspect for your Organizations.
“A” is for Attitude
How does the Organization behave, or what is its central emotional theme? Such Aspects could include “We’ll take this market by any means necessary!”, The Citizens Dream of a Better Tomorrow, “This place is rotten to the core.”
“B” is for Background
Where did the Organization come from, how or why was it formed? Aspects that answer that question include Grew Up Around an Old Silver Mine, Born from the Ashes of Terra Inc and Apollo Systems, Founded in Response to the Growing Vampire Population
“C” is for Core Purpose
What does the Organization do? If it is a company, what does it manufacture? If it is a local gang, how does it make its money? If it’s a government, how does it govern? If it’s a city, what is its primary trade? Such Aspects could include Theocratic Rule Under the Church of the One, Monthly Heroine Shipment from South America, Largest Producer of Corn in the Mid‐ West.
“D” is for Danger
Organizations face dangers, both from other Organizations or from things less direct such as natural disasters or geographic concerns. Some sample dangers might be; “This town was built over a portal to hell!”, Won’t Rest Until Microcorp is Bankrupt, The Whole Company is Riddled with Spies.
Step #4: Purchase Organization’s Skills and Determine Stress Tracks
Like a character, an Organization has a series of Skills it uses to perform tasks. Some are similar to character Skills, while some differ significantly.
Control (Region) – This represents how much overt/covert control the organization holds over a given area, usually in the form of institutionalized rule.
Logistics – the Organization’s capacity to move physical resources, such as troops, supplies, or products.
Perception – the eyes and ears of the group, how connected members are or how affective the Organization’s spies are.
Security – this measures how capable the Organization is at dealing with physical confrontations, the higher the Security, the better trained and outfitted its security, military or independent enforcers. Adds to Physical Stress Track.
Administration – The larger an organization is, the more of its resources it needs to commit to keeping itself in order, and this skill measures how effectively that’s done.
Craft – efficiency in production, covering both quantity and quality
Knowledge – what the Organization knows, patents it owns, industrial secrets, highly educated members, etc.
Morale – the Organization’s mental stability, as well as the determination of its leadership to get the job done. Adds to Mental Stress Track.
Communication – a measure of how effectively a message may be communicated within the organization. For a small organization, this skill may be entirely irrelevant, but for a large organization, it can be critical. This skill is also highly complementary to high information skills.
Connections – the Organization’s important contacts, allies, and general Ability to call on others for aid.
Relations – understanding and manipulating public opinion in a manner that portrays the Organization in a positive light, be it through actual good deeds or propaganda. Adds to Social Stress Track.
Resources – venture capital, cold hard cash, property, wealthy backers, weapons, etc.
Determine the Organization’s Stress Tracks
An Organization’s stress boxes represent the measure of its capacity to absorb or shrug off physical, mental or social stress.
The number of stress boxes an Organization has associated with each type of Consequence is determined with the following formula:
Influence + Security/Morale/Relations = Number of Stress Boxes per Type (Minimum 1)
Unlike individual characters, Organizations always get the full array of Consequences (Minor, Major, Severe(P), Extreme(P) and Defeated(P)).
Step #5: Determine the Organization’s Stunts
An Organization starts with a number of Stunts equal to its Influence +2.
Stunts are Aspects that represent the capabilities of certain members, property, or sub‐groups within the Organization as well as special activities, relationships or social standings within the world. These serve much the same roll as Specialty Aspects for individuals and are usually associated with an Ability the Asset tends to compliment. However, should that object, property or member of the Organization be eliminated in some way, the Organization no longer has that Stunt.
For example, an Organization might invoke its Assassin Squad for a bonus in combat because of their advanced combat training , or they could be invoked for Maneuvers that set up Aspects like “The Mayor of Willowbrook is Dead!”
These are the types of larger scale Aspects that might show up in Organizational conflict.
◆ Shadow Company, Spy Unit (Perception)
◆ Badger, Troop Carrier (Logistics)
◆ Blackmailing Several Local Reporters (Relations)
◆ Ballistae on the Walls (Security)
◆ Dr. Jacob Lawson, Occult Investigator (Knowledge)
◆ Ties to the City’s Elite (Connections)
Aspects like Assassins, Secrecy, Ancient/Lost Technology, Divine Protection, and Holding Attributes (Fortified, Secure, Hidden, Isolated, Ornate, Big, Ancient, Unusual) are among the other types of Stunts available.
The exact nature of the game mechanics will need to be developed.
Membership Advantages are an optional set of Stunts that any member of an Organization can access. To become a member of an Organization you simply need to have either a Character or Specialty Aspect that declares it. The Aspect might say you are a citizen of that town or a card carrying member of that group.
When creating the Organization, you may select a single Membership Advantage Stunt for it. These Membership Stunts are as follows, but apply to the Organization’s members instead of the Organization itself.
◆ +1 bonus on rolls to a certain type of action, no matter what Ability is used. When rolling to perform a task, such as engaging in a social conflict to pressure another character, you gain a +1 bonus, calling upon your organization’s Feared Membership Advantage.
◆ +2 bonus on specific uses of an Ability. This bonus should only apply to very specific uses of an Ability that’s likely to only occur rarely, such as a +2 bonus to Perception when attempting to gain information related to your organization’s demense.
◆ Substitute one Ability for another in specific situations. An organization influence in one Skill may bleed over into a field normally associated with a different Skill. For example, a martial artist may use the organizations’s Connections Skill instead of their own Investigate Skill to hire trackers or guides.
◆ Special. Any small benefit the organization may offer the character. These benefits should be small and function without the need of an Aspect.
A member of an Organization can spend a FP and invoke an Organization’s Aspect that declares their membership to gain access to their Organization’s Membership Stunt, for the duration of the scene.
For example, let’s say you have an Aspect called Black Asp Sergeant. The Black Asps are a mercenary Organization that has the Membership Stunt Missile Combat Discipline.
During a conflict, you can spend a FP to invoke your Black Asp Sergeant Aspect to gain the Missile Combat Discipline Stunt for the duration of the scene; as if you had purchased it for yourself with your own Refresh.
Organizational Consequences & Sacrificing Stunts
Like an individual character, when an Organization takes a Consequence, it suffers some ill effect relative to the type of attack it suffered.
Alternatively, however, if the attack is severe enough to cause a Consequence and overflow into the next set of stress boxes, the Organization may instead sacrifice one of its Stunts. Doing this removes that Stunt from the Organization, but it also stops the stress from overflowing beyond the first Consequence.
Generally, the Stunt that is removed is up to the player controlling the Organization, but if the attacker takes a Called Shot (below) and the outcome is Success with Style, the attacker may select which Stunt was taken out.
Sometimes a character wants to attack an opponent (physically, mentally, or socially) in such a way as to provoke a specific result. This is especially useful when trying to stake a vampire, blow the head off a zombie, or make an enemy react a certain way to your threats.
When using the “Called Shots” optional rule, any time a player Succeeds with Style with an attack roll and the enemy is forced to take a Consequence, the attacker may spend a Fate Point to describe that Consequence instead of the defender.
As always, the Consequence described must make sense with the type of attack performed, and the GM may over‐rule it. Also, the defender has the option to spend a Fate Point to veto the description and come up with his own as per a normal attack.
Sample Organizational Consequences
• Shipping Delay (Physical)
• Delay in Communications (Mental)
• Lost a Few Customers (Social)
• Cut Off From Important Unit (Physical)
• Sinking Morale (Mental)
• Associated with Scandal (Social)
• The Gates Have Been Breached (Physical)
• Mass Mutiny (Mental)
• Focus of Public Outrage (Social)
• Crippled Weapons Production (Physical)
• Civil War (Mental)
• Competitors Dominate the Market (Social) Defeated(P)
• Leadership Has Been Wiped Out (Physical)
• “We all QUIT!” (Mental)
• Company Dissolved by the Government (Social)
Healing Organizational Consequences
Consequences heal the same way for Organizations as they do for individual characters, but at a slower rate. Like character consequences, actions must be taken to justify the recovery, such as hiring a repair crew for physical consequences, holding a town meeting to repair mental consequences, or launch a propaganda campaign for social consequences.
Minor – Downgrades to no Consequence in 1 Day for Physical & Mental. For Social, it downgrades in 1 Month, no roll required
Major – Downgrades to Minor, or just clears, in 1 Week for Physical & Mental. For Social, it downgrades in 3 Months, Diff: 2
Severe(P) – Downgrades to Major in 1 Month for Physical & Mental. For Social, it downgrades in 1 Year, Diff: 4
Extreme(P) – Downgrades to Severe in 3 Months for Physical & Mental. For Social, it downgrades in 3 Years, Diff: 6
Defeated(P) – Downgrades to Minor in 1 Year for Physical & Mental. For Social, it downgrades in a Decade, Diff: 8 – Assuming it can be recovered from at all.
To replace a sacrificed Stunt, each week the Organization may roll a Skill check against a difficulty of 3 to replace it.
The Skill rolled depends largely on the type of Stunt that is being replaced. For example, replacing its best scientist would require a Knowledge roll, while replacing a crack commando squad would require a Security roll.
Improving the Organization
Like characters, it’s possible to sink milestone advancements into an Organization to make it grow.
This is done in two ways:
1. Characters may grant their milestones to the Organization. These milestones function for the Organization exactly like it would for the character.
2. Completion of missions. Every time the PCs complete a mission that would aid the Organization, the Organization would benefit as if had received the same milestone, without the need for characters to expend their own milestone benefits.
The leader(s) of the Organization can spend milestone advances to improve the Organization in the following ways:
During a minor milestone, you can choose to do one (and only one) of the following (as long as any changes reflect the narrative):
◆ Switch the rank values of any two skills, or replace one Average (+1) skill with one that isn’t on the Organization’s sheet
◆ Change any single stunt for another stunt
◆ Purchase a new Organization Stunt, provided the organization has refresh to do so.
◆ Rename one Organization Aspect that isn’t its Defining Aspect.
◆ One benefit of a Minor Milestone, the Organization gains the following (as long as any changes reflect the narrative):
◆ One additional skill point, which can be spent to buy a new skill at Average (+1) or increase an existing skill by one rank (The Skill Pyramid holds true for Organizations).
◆ Purchase a new Organization Aspect. The Organization may never have more than 7 Organization Aspects.
◆ Change Membership Advantage Stunt.
◆ Increase Refresh Rate by 1.
◆ Increase the Organization’s Influence by 1. However, the Organization may not increase its Influence if it does not have enough members or actual impact on the world to justify the increase.
◆ Rename the Organization’s Defining Aspect if called for.
Thanks to Void Star Strands of Fate.