Fantasy AGE 2nd Edition Preview: The Latest in AGE-ology
This time around we’ll talk about some of the rules that are new to the 2nd edition of Fantasy AGE. As some of you may know, we’ve devised new rules across multiple Adventure Game Engine lines, including Modern AGE, Blue Rose, Cthulhu Awakens, and The Expanse. Many of these rules could be ported to Fantasy AGE with minimal adaptation, so, well, we did it! That’s the advantage of a common system.
New Core Systems
New-to-Fantasy AGE core rules include:
- Rules for foot, riding, or vehicle chases—and crashes, too. These rules, evolved from Modern AGE, emphasize chases as dramatic events instead of counting map inches.
- An investigation system which can run on high or low detail, depending on what fits the adventure.
- A straightforward social system.
- Challenge tests, for complicated extended tasks, such as heists—and Simple Tests when you need a straightforward answer without stunts. (Yes, it sounds weird, but once you see them, you’ll know why.)
- Conditions and more defeat options. Falling to 0 Health isn’t automatically lethal anymore. Instead, the attacker or scenario determines whether you’ve been knocked out, killed, or simply beaten down for capture—though the rules provide an option for your foe to leave you with a scar you’ll never forget.
This is besides the various changes and expansions, such as talents and specializations. we’ve been talking about in other articles. There are also a number of other small tweaks here and there that help smooth play, and a couple of places where we’ve refined rules descriptions.
New Optional Systems
Fantasy AGE’s 2nd edition also includes a number of optional systems. These aren’t “default” Fantasy AGE, but what does that even mean? It’s your game.
Peril! You may have seen this system before, in The Expanse, where we call it the Churn, and in the Modern AGE Companion, where we call it Complications. Peril is Fantasy AGE’s version: a system where heroes who succeed frequently automatically generate further challenges, so that there are always dangers to face in adventures.
Daring! Of course, sometimes heroes in trouble need a dramatic reversal. The original version of this system from the Modern Age Companion, Serendipity, has been further refined into Daring, its Fantasy Age form. Daring offers special benefits to characters suffering from a run of bad luck, so that once fate smiles upon them once again, they can hit harder and do better than ever before.
Fortune! A popular option originally designed for The Expanse, Fortune is an optional replacement for Health that represents a hero’s ‘script immunity” beyond raw toughness. Characters spend Fortune to indicate that attacks and dangers just miss them, and provide a way to trade safety for excellence, as you spend Fortune to boost dice rolls.
Relationships! Originally introduced in the Blue Rose RPG, Relationships have become one of AGE system’s signature systems. Relationships provide Bonds heroes can draw upon when they support strong feelings about another PC or NPC—and sometimes, more abstract things. You can use it to represent powerful love, implacable hate, or even the kind of snarky friendships heroes tend to have.
I wasn’t sure what I should put in this article and what I should save, but I’m at over 500 words now, so why get long-winded? I’ll tell you about things like divine magic another time. Cheers!