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Auto-correcting Luck with Fudge

I’ve been thinking about fudge dice. For those unfamiliar, fudge dice have an equal chance of rolling blank, plus or minus. In numerical terms, that’s -1, 0, or 1. Typically in fudge you roll 4dF, generating a number from -4 to 4, with a bell curve heavily skewed towards 0.

Anyways, I had some ideas about the dice, in addition to being used to generate a random number, also having other effects.

For example, say you generated a positive point (+P) for every plus rolled, and a negative point (-P) for every minus rolled. Then you could have powers based on spending those points. I’d probably have defensive powers use +P and offensive powers use -P.

That lead me to the idea that these points could actually be used to compensate for someone’s luck. Suppose instead of -P and +P, you got adrenaline for rolling minuses and fatigue for rolling pluses. Now you’ve got a system where people that roll poorly are building up some kind of advantage, and people that roll well are getting a disadvantage.

One issue with basing benefits on rolls is that you can often game the system by trying to force rolls. This doesn’t matter so much in combat, where you might have a turn and there’s an opportunity cost to everything you do, but in a less structured encounter it can be quite abusable.

So what if for every minus you rolled, you got a point of karma. For every plus you rolled, the GM advances a doom track. When the doom track reaches a certain level, something bad happens. Maybe random badness, maybe something the GM planned out ahead of time. You can use it as a timer of sorts; at 30 doom, the prisoners are executed, or the ship leaves port without the PCs, etc.

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