Dresden Files: My first impressions of FATE

Today I finally got to use the FUDGE dice I ordered a few months ago when I sat down to my first game of Dresden Files.
The setting is based on that presented in the books by Jim Butcher, namely a modern fantasy incorporating modern city folk, some film noir tropes, and magic both fun and dangerous into a nice little bundle.
I’m playing Joe Smith (better name forthcoming I hope), a cryomancer with an addiction to facts and lore. The rest of the group is made up of a put-upon ectomancer, a gangland lycanthrope, a Mexican sorcerer who has trouble with English and a mortal with some connections to gangs and magic. Whilst we only played through one game day, we did get to play around with our characters, get a handle on the system and various plots we could stumble upon, and do some interaction.
Whilst the lycanthrope was hired by his old gang (with new leader) to steal a music box from a house filled with maniacal laughter, the mortal was sent a message via a magic chalkboard by his grandfather regarding a great evil coming to get him. The Mexican sorcerer began as a day labourer, got cornered by a pixie who told him exactly what the various holes under the construction site were for (bodies). He quickly dispatched his employer and all round nasty guy, then somehow got hired as a Spanish tutor at a local night school, spending the time between being hired and teaching by getting drunk. I was visited by the new Warden in town, reminded that a Doom hangs over my head (or is that neck?) and the proceeded to have a fight in a bar with a local chronomancer over it. The ectomancer was harassed by old ghosts, had a message scrawled in ectoplasm on her fridge by some unknown force (“BEWARE!” underlined twice.), then proceeded to get very drunk herself to cope.
The news in the bar was some nasty new bigwig had bustled into town and was upsetting everyone. This turned out to be the new gang leader, Walter. Mr Sorcerer’s class was badly affected by technology breaking (particularly a ringing cellphone), followed by one student collapsing after mysteriously losing all the air in his lungs (he did ask a very clever question, so perhaps deserved it).
Carrying the drunken ectomancer home and using the Sight on her fridge, I was able to deduce that it had been written by some sort of powerful faerie from the Nevernever, not a ghost as was first thought. I also managed to give myself a migraine trying to count the underlining (turns out it was a lot more than two!)

Whilst the game was a hell of a lot of fun, it was using the FATE system that was the major interest for me. The four dice and ladder system worked really well to balance good skills with lucky moments. The spell casting system is easy to understand, one you get the hang of it. Using Fate Points to establish story by players, and compel character actions by the Aspect system was a really fun element. I’ve an Aspect of ‘Shenanigans’ which I offered the GM to compel in the bar, which instead became a compel for the Doom of Damocles and a bar fight by a patron over it.
Definitely looking forward to the game next week. As far as I’ve pieced together, the music box Walter wanted stolen has something to do with the great evil out to get the mortal, and is certainly likely to be the bad thing the faerie wanted to warn someone about. Whether the dead bodies at the building site had anything to do with Walter I don’t know, but given the pixie appearance I’m hedging my bets with ‘maybe’.

I’m now going to begin creating some sample Aspects for the fantasy setting I’ve been working on, both for races and regions, and maybe work on some stunts too. I do like this system. I hope it will be my friend.

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