by Jacob

Counter: A New Action In Fate

A Good Defense Is A Good Offense, I Always Say

One of the interesting things in Dungeon World (yes, I know this is a Fate post; just hold your horses) is the fact that monsters don’t take actions; The GM describes what the monsters do, then have the players figure out how they want to deal with that, and failure equals pain.

In essence, a player could decide to deal with a monster’s attack by attacking right back. I wanted to be able to do something similar to that in Fate, so I came up with today’s topic: the Counter action.

New Action: Counter

Instead of rolling Defense against a Create Advantage or Attack roll, make your own Create Advantage or Attack action at a -2.

Fail: Suffer the consequences of whatever you were trying to prevent
Tie: Don’t suffer the consequences, but grant your opponent a boost
Success or Success with Style: Don’t suffer the consequences and apply Success or Success with Style of the Counter action you took.


As you can see, you get a -2 for the potential benefits of applying an effect, which isn’t there in the typical Defend action. In Fate, a -2 can be a pretty decent penalty, which makes me feel that this is a safe action. It also has the added benefit of something interesting always happening (a simple Success while defending is pretty boring), and something interesting should always happen when dice hit the table.

Oh, The Possibilities

If you (as a GM) or your GM don’t think it’s appropriate for the Counter action to be always available to all characters, you can always off it as a Stunt. That’s one of the beauties of Fate, almost any rule change can be represented as a Stunt. This would be better as a Stunt if it were tweaked a little first.

First off, remove the -2 penalty. Instead, you should limit it by making it usable with only one specific Skill doing one of either Create Advantage or Attack. Now I can really see that being a good Stunt.


What do you think? Does it seem balanced? Exciting? Pointless? Let me know what you think in the comments below.


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