Thursday, November 14, 2013



FATE CORE Draft 1.0  April 08, 2013 - Blue Tyson


In the mid twenty-first century Earth is a good old fashioned corporate dystopia.  Blood and circuses is big, although generally taking place in a slightly more civilised fashion. That is, housed in air-conditioned sports arenas with plenty of beer, soft drinks, cappuccino, pies, hot dogs, donuts and chips.  The various codes of football still exist, but even soccer takes a back seat in popularity to The Ball.  The game underwent renaming and rebranding when a couple of decades earlier an attempt was made to control the best player The Ball had ever seen by the corporations in control.   This did not end well for the leadership of these companies, leaving them as literal bloody stains in history.  Even pig food, In one case.  So The Ball is again played as it usually was.

The Ball is an armored, metal ball carrying violent version of Roller Derby, with added gridiron gear and motorbikes. With occasional local variation for added spice.


Is history repeating itself?
The Finals series

Melbourne has gone undefeated for the entire season.  The finals loom.  Johnno, their best player and hence the best player in the world is approaching the popularity levels of the best player in the game's past.  Merchandise featuring the team's kangaroo mascot can't be kept in stock. Rumblings and rumours of corporate discontent abound.  The fans, however, love him.  The current boards are still wary and don't really fancy the thought of hanging from streetlights or becoming pet food.  Or living in hiding forever.  What's the point of being filthy rich and fascistic if you have to hide away in a fortress?  Makes the corporate box at The Ball with hot and cold running everything a waste of money, too.


The Melbourne Company

Biggest Company in Town
Actually, Not Quite the Bastards Some Other Corporates Are


Unearthly (+7)  Resources
Monstrous  (+6)  Contacts

The executives with control of the company are Jeremy and Jennifer Doull.  Brother and sister, Jennifer is the eldest.  They have known Johnno since university where they used to hang out so much they were called Triple J or JJJ.  There are definitely rumours that this threesome was actually a threesome.


These three met at university and have had a tempestuous relationship since.  The brute, the athlete and the brain complemented each other nicely.  Attractive and charismatic in their own ways.  After they graduated, their careers fractured their close-knit bond, at least as far as the public is aware.  They certainly don't get seen together outside of game days. Jennifer did some postgraduate education, Jeremy became a way more hardcore gym junkie and Johnno a professional Ball player.  All three had rapid rises to stardom in their own areas and Jeremy also has corporate influence.  All three have secrets.  All three lack parents. Johnno orphaned young and the Doulls lost both their parents to cancer recently and company control has passed to them by inheritance. Their parents were busy wresting control of The Melbourne Company while they were at university.

Jeremy Doull

Big corporate bastard
Don't mess with my sister
MGH abuser
JJJ relationship is complicated

F: Remarkable +3  
A: Good +1
S: Amazing +5
E: Excellent +2
R: Typical +0
I: Typical +0
P: Good +1

Other Skills

Amazing (+5)  Resources, Weightlifting
Incredible (+4) Contacts, Provoke
Remarkable (+3)  Popularity
Excellent (+2) Drive
Good (+1)  Lore, Shoot

His basic stats have changed thanks to the use of Mutant Growth Hormone.  He now has pretty much superhuman strength at the cost of reduced Endurance and Intuition.  Make these Remarkable, Remarkable and Good if he kicks the habit.

Jennifer Doull

Clever corporate bastard
Don't mess with my brother
Secret Robin Hood Leanings
JJJ relationship is complicated

F: Good +1  
A: Excellent +2
S: Good +1
E: Excellent +2
R: Remarkable +3
I: Excellent +2
P: Excellent +2

Other Skills

Fantastic (+6)  Resources
Amazing (+5)  Deceive, Contacts
Incredible (+4)  Popularity, Lore
Excellent (+2)  Drive, Empathy, Investigate, Provoke, Shoot, Stealth
Good (+1)  Burglary


Best Ball Player in the World
Always Has the Fans Onside
Trained by a Legend (in fact, The Legend as well, but not publicly known)
A Nice Guy
JJJ relationship is complicated

F: Incredible +4  
A: Incredible +4
S: Excellent +2
E: Incredible +4
R: Good +1
I: Amazing +5
P: Remarkable +3

Other Skills

Unearthly (+7)  The Ball, Popularity
Amazing (+5)  Contacts, Rapport
Excellent (+2)  Empathy, Lore
Good (+1) Deceive, Drive, Provoke, Shoot, Stealth

The Legend

Was the Best Ball Player the World Had Ever Seen
Always Has the Fans Onside
Seeks Worthy Successors To Train
Secret Corporate Watchdog

F: Remarkable +3  
A: Remarkable +3
S: Excellent +2
E: Incredible +4
R: Good +1
I: Amazing +5
P: Remarkable +3

Other Skills

Legendary (+8)  The Ball  (Legendary Y (+9) at the height of his career)
Unearthly (+7)  Popularity (but currently deliberately off the radar for some time, so use a lower figure unless he deliberately re-emerges)
Fantastic (+6)  Contacts
Amazing (+5)  Rapport
Remarkable (+3) Deceive
Excellent (+2)  Drive, Empathy, Provoke, Shoot
Good (+1)  Lore, Stealth

These four are intended as important NPCs, but they certainly could be played if the roles appealed to people.


Some possibilities:

Melbourne Killeroos team members.  Can you live through the Finals and keep your team captain alive, too? Amazing (+5) The Ball recommended.

Melbourne Killeroos support staff.  Security, trainer, media, administration, executives, investigators, IT, etc.  Similar goals to the above with more involvement in off track skullduggery.

Watchdog Agents.  Working for The Legend on whatever he is up to in his anti-corporate and player recruiting activities.  Could combine with any of the above.  Mercenaries, spies, private eyes, thieves and more, possibly.  Season tickets being a job perk.


Capacity: 50,000.

Unpredictable Mutant Kangaroo With Blades.


The Teams

10 players each on the track :
3 Bikers
2 Catchers
5 Skaters

Teams may have more than 10 players so substitutions can be made, up to 20 players.


A game is 60 minutes, with three 20 minute periods.

Starting Play

A metal ball is fired around the outside edge of a track.  Only a catcher can grab the ball on initial firing, as they have the special glove designed to prevent their hand from being pulverised.  This means that other players in the way before a ball gets to a catcher better be getting out of the way or dodging.


A team must do a lap with the ball to initiate an Attack.  If a team steals the ball they must do a lap to initiate their own Attack. The other team defends.  The team who is on Attack has three laps to attempt to score. If they fail to attempt to score or the ball falls to the gutter middle of the track it is dead and you return to starting play.  



The track is circular and inclined, so slice as you desire, although either goal should be one zone for ease of rules.  12 zones makes sense, with upper, middle and lower areas, but use others if you like or if more fun. 3 segments to a zone in the top of the track, two in the middle and one at the bottom, comparatively.   Different arenas may have different size quirks.  It is quicker to move around the bottom of the track than the top, of course.


A skater hitching a ride on a bike can basically double their movement speed up to a maximum of the bike's ability, of course.  Towing a player slows a bike slightly.

Position Rules


May score, or attack skaters or catchers.  Attacking a biker gets you a three minute sin bin penalty.  


May catch the fired ball safely or attack skaters or catchers.  Attacking a biker gets you a three minute sin bin penalty.


Bikers may not move into the area directly in front of either goal.  The same three minute penalty applies.


Attacking someone who is knocked out, or fallen is a three minute penalty.  Fallen players are only removed from the track in dead ball time.

Players must continue to move around the track in the same direction unless currently involved in beating each other up.  Otherwise a three minute penalty, or period and then rest of game for further offenses.

Attacking a referee is an automatic ejection from the game.

Anyone attacking a biker, even another biker gets a three minute penalty.


For games with no player characters involved or watching a Team vs Team roll can be made.  Add up skills in The Ball of the starting lineups for each team, make a roll, highest wins.  Use the difference for the score if you want.

Important scenes in a game that is attended could be played out as movement and combat.  Particularly when influenced by off track shenanigans.

A whole game could be played, or at least the player characters involved in it and their parts.  Use one minute, two minute turns of game time for example.  The GM can have fun rolling and applying results to NPC team members on either side.  Good for Grand Finals etc.


Being a big Marvel Super Heroes fan from way back, this is how I like to think:

Value   Adjective

+13  Cosmic 5 (Class 5000)
+12  Cosmic 3 (Class 3000)
+11  Cosmic 1 (Class 1000)
+10  Legendary Z (Shift Z)
+9    Legendary Y (Shift Y)
+8    Legendary X (Shift X)
+7    Unearthly (Epic)
+6    Monstrous (Fantastic)
+5    Amazing (Superb)
+4    Incredible (Great)
+3    Remarkable (Good)
+2    Excellent (Fair)
+1    Good (Average)
+0    Typical (Mediocre)
-1    Poor
-2    Feeble (Terrible)
-3    Awful 0 (Shift 0)
-4    Abysmal

FASERIP - basic human attributes

Physique is split compared to Core, into a Strength component and an Endurance component, the latter of which should be used for the Stress track.  Reason is native intelligence.

Fighting (Fight)
Agility (Athletics)
Intuition (Notice)
Psyche (Will)


Popularity is a measure of charisma, reputation and public influence. If you like, bad people can have a negative popularity ladder equivalent.  Supervillains, mass murderers, ruthless thugs in The Ball, etc.


If you want standard FATE CORE this is easily changed.



Rollerball (1975), not the stupid, stupid, stupid remake.


Rulerball - a Rollerball miniatures ruleset.
Speedball - a computer game bearing some similarities but played on an enclosed court, not a circular track.

Short stories

Roller Ball Murder - William Harrison
The story that the original movie was based on.

No comments: