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Create Twist Deck only once per character?


GrahamA
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On page 190: "During the course of character creation, every character creates a Twist Deck (see page 63) of thirteen cards."

 

Given this statement it means that before the game begins and no matter how many sessions are played or pursuits followed, the Twist Deck is created and remains constant?

 

This seems problematical to me. That would mean that I'd need to be a very experienced player who knew all the Talents my character was going to gain during the game so that I'd know the relative importance of each suit to my character. I don't think this is in keeping with the various combinations and directions that any Fated character could take through game time. Surely the ability to rebuild the Twisted Deck after the Epilogue where a Destiny was resolved would seem more reasonable? The idea being to retune the Twist Deck as the character advances, much as the Aspects, Skills and Talents can be?

 

Thoughts?

 

Thanks,

    Graham....

 

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Yeah, that is indeed a problem I noticed pretty quickly when making characters.  It means you should research likely paths and and such.  Luckily the predictive descriptions given in the Twist Deck creation part of the book are pretty accurate.  :ram is generally physical (critical hit and healing in the core book).  :mask is generally related to deception and social tests.  :crow is in most anything necromantic and poisonous.  :tome are academic and cover a large chunk of spellcasting.

 

There are also talents which can modify your Twist Deck, so it's not quite as static as you would initially believe.  The core book only offers a couple of options, but I bet those will be expanded upon in future releases.

 

Edit:  As for allowing players to modify it every session, I am unsure.  The flexibility is nice, but it could get annoying to track if the player takes any of the Twist Deck modification talents.  I think the "static" deck is better in the long run due to potential complications, and the fact that your choices should already be related to your character's background and personality.  For instance, if I make a sniper/assassin I would probably choose :ram or :crow as my first and second suits.  A gentleman tinkerer might get :mask and :tome as the high suits.

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If you follow the guidelines in the books (i.e., masks are for deception, tomes are knowledge, etc.) and take a glance at spellcasting, I haven't really found it to be a problem. Even if you end up putting your most needed suit in the "worst" slot, you still get a 10, 6, and 2 out of it, which isn't terrible. Toss in some talents to modify the Twist Deck and the ability to create manifested powers tied to your primary suit and you should still be just fine.

I'd be a bit hesitant to allow players to change their Twist Deck every session, as it will ensure that players will always have a 13 of their best suit in their deck, regardless of what pursuit they're currently on, and that will tend towards making players a bit stronger.

 

The idea is that some characters are just naturally better at some things than others, and discovering what your character excels at - or watching as she runs down a completely unexpected path that she's well suited for - can be interesting in its own right.

 

 

Besides, if you're trying to optimize a character to get it as strong as possible, the Twist Deck suits aren't really where you should be looking. :P

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Manson: Thanks, it's only that this is our 1st game ever so I'm not at all confident about Twist Deck optimization; even knowing where I want to take my character. He starts of as a Doctor with initial pursuit Academic, and then "bends" towards Sorcery and Necromancy as loosing a patient becomes more and more unacceptable to him.

 

Brewmaster: Yep that's where my mind is at right now. Once we've played a few games I'll be a lot more comfortable on how important I feel this issue is and take appropriate action. I do like my characters to have flexibility over time - I'm used to playing long games of DnD (twice a month for over 2 years) and the character can evolve and adapt to various play styles.

 

Thanks,

    Graham....

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Personal preference: I allow players to modify decks every destiny step. Means they can change their decks 5 times only. Once I have a group that's comfortable with the system (or a group that this is their first system), I'd say the single deck is fine.

 

This is a totally workable solution if you're worried about locking yourself into to poor choices before you know what's going on.

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Make characters explain why they made their choices for their initial fate decks... then don't change them!

 

I think thats the best way.  These characters are striving against fate, not skipping through it  picking up flowers!  This could easily be reflected in not having all the cards you always need.

 

I created a character back in December that was designed to be an intellectual with terrible physical stats, but because of the way the cards have flipped she has ended up being an unintentional melee badass who tanks for the party.  She needs rams all the time, and I didn't pay attention to those when I was creating.

 

It makes the character far more rewarding.  I love the unlikeliness of it all, and so does the rest of the party.  Its like constantly rooting for the underdog.

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We only did it the once and have had no problems. That's ranging from players who planned a lot of their character out in advance through to those who had no idea of their development and left it all up to roleplay and the different prologues to make decisions on Pursuit based on what the game 'suggested' would be a suitable role.

 

To be honest it has even worked out better that way for one of our players who didn't know and just let the story develop their character. As a wastrel now they can 'drop' cards that are of great use (number and suit) to other Fated in our group. We also have a tinkerer/overseer who has been great in offering up alternate/addiotional suits for our active cards. We haven't had anyone feel their early choice turned out 'wrong' or of detriment to their character.

 

EDIT: we're also playing long games Grahama, weekly and been going since release. We're at 22 (I think) destiny steps in but we have a 'role play session' every second week and Step session alternate earning 1 xp for each session but pursuit steps every second. Although you can only buy a skill when we play a 'step' session. So we earn 2xp and 1 step every two games. We get an individual Fate/Destiny step done once every 8 or 9 weeks. We found the advantage of doing it this way is we have enough XP to buy up 'roleplay skills' that kind of round our characters out a bit more. It also means our more social characters get an opportunity to shine in the RP weeks and we can do crafting and other investigation/exploring of the game world.

 

We've found the cheat deck to not be overly important once you get a few games in. By that time you have a suit added to a skill from general talents or an extra flip or two. Steady something talent that gives an additional focus is a great general. Non-combat characters become very functional with that talent if it's available to them. Great for int based rifle combat as our Doctor/Wastrel uses.

 

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