Wednesday, December 15, 2010

[Kerberos] Updates!

So! Just got off the ol' Skype from my first call with Shane Ivey at Arc Dream about this whole FATE Kerberos project, and I have to say... I'm pretty damn excited. There's a lot I can't disclose yet, but there are a few things I can, so let's do that.

  • It'll be a standalone book. No surprise here, really -- without a definitive version of FATE that everyone can agree on, we kinda don't have another option. I don't think many will complain, though. This means the standard bits on what aspects are, what skills are, how the Fate Point economy works, and etc. I will endeavor to keep all of this as concise as possible, but not so much so that it isn't easily understood. This book will not stop a bullet. That's the Mike Olson guarantee.
  • FATE trumps ORE. Many bits of KC are very FATE-friendly as-is, but where ORE's mechanics and FATE's are incompatible, or where replicating what KC does with ORE would be a convoluted process, the relative rules-lightness of FATE (not that it's actually rules-light, mind you) will take priority. It's my feeling that people who buy FATE Kerberos will be doing so in large part because they like FATE, and they'll want a decidedly FATE-y version of things that plays to FATE's strengths instead of a game that tries to turn FATE into ORE. ORE is a very different animal than FATE, so if it's an equal choice between, say, making a bunch of dice rolls or just compelling an aspect, I'll go with the latter.
  • Fudge Dice are the default. My take on scaling powers uses both Fudge Dice and d6s, so that's what we're going to use. However, I know that not everyone likes Fudge Dice, so there'll also be guidelines and advice on using one or two other dice mechanics instead. Regardless, the rules will work no matter what dice mechanic you choose to use.
  • The KC you know and love will be preserved wherever possible. By this, I mean that many of the concepts used in KC (and Wild Talents, as applicable) will be retained and FATE-ized with as little alteration as I can manage. For example, characters will still have an Archetype and Convictions, but as aspects, not as their own discrete mechanical elements. If I can find a cool halfway point for a given component between ORE and FATE that stays true to both and doesn't require pages of explanation to work, then I'll take it.
  • WE NEED PLAYTESTERS. Seriously. I can't go into specifics about the timeline, but we're going to need to get some good playtesting done within the next couple months. If you're interested in this, and I know you are, leave me a comment below, send me an email, or whatever with your contact info, and we'll get materials out to you ASAP. Please note that this is contingent upon me getting my notes and stuff together in a form that can actually be sent out to people, so if you email me today, don't expect to get a playtest packet tonight. Or tomorrow. Or over the weekend. I'll also be fishing for playtesters in the FATE RPG Yahoo! Group and on And Facebook, too. Sure, why not. Maybe I'll set up a group there we can use. 
There's a lot more, but it's all either minutiae or stuff I just can't talk about yet. It was a pleasure to finally speak with Shane in person-ish, though. And now if you'll excuse me, I have a crap-ton of really awesome work to to do....


Reverend Bayn said...

I've got a regular playtest group that specializes in indie rpgs. We've player KC before, we've played Fate-based games before, and I'm sure we'd love to get in on this.

You can contact me at

Thanks, --Dan Bayn

Anonymous said...

I am very interested -- I've been wanting FATE Kerberos since Kerberos Club came out.

You can contact me at drcpunk AT labcats DOT org.

The Lord of Excess said...

SOUNDS AWESOME!! Sign the Utah crew up for play testing ... (speaking of which ... we ran Action City and the group liked it!). I actually finally picked up Legends of Anglerre and hope to be able to get a campaign going in January.

Unknown said...

I haven't commented on your site but I regularly read it and greatly enjoy FATE.

I would be really interested in helping in any way I could with playtesting!

I can be contacted at FATEDCasey @

Thank you for your consideration-
Casey Monaghan

Mike Olson said...

My consideration? Please -- the Kerberos Club is far more egalitarian than that. Anyone who wants to playtest it will get to playtest it, no qualifications required. (Other than, of course, your patience in awaiting the arrival of the playtest materials themselves.)

free hatani said...

I am so game to playtest this! I already threw a hero or two together from your previous supers experimentation. :-) buenasdias10 AT gmail DOT com.

F. J. Eastman said...

I've got a group that would love to playtest this. We're local to Birmingham AL, very interested in KC and FATE.

Unknown said...

Awesome! I just didn't know how many people you wanted to do the playtesting.

Can't wait!

Eric Berg said...

My group would love to playtest this. They adored the Kerberos Club setting but found the ORE system unwieldy, so we started a Dresden Files campaign instead, which sold them on FATE.

Mike Olson said...

Good to see so much interest! The only thing I need right now from people who want to playtest is an email address. If you're not comfortable posting that here, you can reach me on Facebook.

As for how many playtesters we'll need... honestly, I'll take all I can get. We're on a bit of a tight timeline here, so we need to pack as much playtesting into the next couple months as possible. Right now I have a list of about 15 email addresses; if every one of those people were able to get a group together and facilitate one to four sessions sometime before the end of February, that'd make for a good bit of playtest feedback.

Heck, even if only half of them manage to get some playtesting done, that's still not bad, considering we're dealing with mechanics that have already undergone a fair bit of playtesting by yours truly. However, the utility of that pales in comparison to blind playtesting, IMO. That's why you guys are so valuable.

JPJ said...

We have been playing Dresden Files since the Pre-Order PDF and before that I was running a SotC campain (and as a player I had the chance to play SBA for several month and one session of Diaspora). So I'm pretty familiar with FATE (and so are most of my players) and have a group ready that is willing and eager to play :). I'd love to join your the playtest crew^^.

cadena_de_mano *at* web *dot* de

Unknown said...

This sounds like fun. My group has some experience with Fate and they would love to try this out. You can contact me at
dhaman dot ashtar at gmail dot com

Zakharov Sawyer said...

I run a "one or two shot" game every year with family for Christmas since we come from all over the world to exist in one spot for a week or two.

I'd love to run this as our game to test it, since everyone loves FATE more then fruitcake.

Unknown said...

I am planning on running a holiday one-shot and may have the opportunity for running several more in January 2011. I'd love to test the FATE KC with the group!

Unknown said...

I have a regular FATE group with playtesting experience; we've playtested for Arc Dream before in fact, although it was 'This Favored Land', not 'Kerberos Club'. I'm sure my group would love the chance to playtest this!

Feel free to contact me at

H. M. 'Dain' Lybarger

Volsung said...

Better late than never !
Which are the requirements to be playtesters? :)

Mike Olson said...

Which are the requirements to be playtesters? :)

It's a rigorous process.

Step One:Drop me a line -- you can PM me on or contact me on Facebook.

Step Two: I put you on the list.

Step Three: Profit!