For Valkyries I decided to use the system found in Demon Hunters, published Dead Gentlemen Productions and written by Cam Banks, Amanda Valentine, and Nathan Rockwood. Demon Hunters uses a drift of Fate Core called Faith Corps (yes, it’s a pun). Instead of Fate/Fudge dice, it uses standard dice, and Disciplines like Combat & Tactics or Research & Development in addition to the core Approaches found in Fate Accelerated.

Last night, my home group played it for the first time.

We’d created characters last week and this week we saw those characters in action for the first time.

Meet Chapter ɸ13

The Chapter is located underneath the central water feature of the Columbus Zoo and has the following Aspects:

  • Lead By Jungle Jack Hannah
  • Underground Headquarters with Access Behind the Dragon at Asia Quest
  • Chupacabra’s Goat-Laden Cheat Day
  • Krampus-ing My Style (The Time that Caroline Got Kidnapped During the Clintonville Krampus Walk

We decided to have the chapter set in our own town of Columbus, OH, so everything’s focused on that. And yes, there’s an area of town called Clintonville that has an annual Krampus Walk. It really sucks when Krampus actually shows up. Also, the Chapter is supposed to have a number of Aspects equal to half the number of Demon Hunters. That seemed small to me, so I made four NPC Demon Hunters so there’ll be a total of eight in the Chapter, meaning we get four Aspects.

The Demon Hunters

The first two Aspects of each character are Concept and Trouble, like in most Fate-based games. The other three are each linked to the Disciplines that the character has chosen. If it says “Fringe” after the Aspect, it means that the character is really focused on their own weird nature, and can use that in place of other Disciplines.

Caroline Redd 

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Caroline’s parents are both Demon Hunters and used to let her play around in their labs. Somehow, Caroline got all of the memories of a mid-1800s Shaolin Master combined with her own. So now she’s a Demon Hunter in her own right, y’know, after snack time.

Aspects:

  • Innocent Little Girl, Trying Her Best
  • Dirty Old Man, With No Fucks or Filter
  • Master of Many Styles (Combat & Tactics)
  • Street Fighter Super Tournament Ultra Edition 4XE (Mystic Arts)
  • Veruca Salt (Social Engineering)

Bigfoot (H. Henderson)

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Bigfoot, the actual Bigfoot is an expert in Covert Ops (how do you think he’s never been really photographed?), and serves as the Chapter’s computer expert. Sadly, not even his own Chapter members believe he’s really there, and most people on the street think he’s just doing a really good Chewbacca cosplay.

Aspects:

  • Seriously, I’m Bigfoot
  • No Pockets
  • You Can’t See Me (Covert Ops)
  • Bigfoot Smash! (Combat & Tactics)
  • Dabbles in Illusion (Mystic Arts)

Dr. Xzvtrb (Tim)

2015-12-16 06.47.40Dr. Xzvtrb, pronounced “Tim,” is a fishman who fell out with his traditional Dagon-worshiping family due to his overwhelming love for the work of Nicola Tesla. He’s the Chapter’s R&D guy, specializing in weird gadgets. He’s also a really chill Zen master.

Aspects:

  • Landlocked Son of Dagon
  • I Can Only be Zen for So Long
  • Raised in an Old God Church (Fringe)
  • Tesla Fanboy (Research & Development)
  • Octopus Skin (Covert Ops)

Declan Kane (Bladerunner)

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Declan is a 1700 year-old Druid who has managed to bind iron into his tattoos, something most Druids thought impossible (EDIT: I’ve been informed by Declan that Atticus [see next sentence] is a jerk and didn’t share the secret of iron-binding). He’s directly modeled after Atticus in Kevin Hearne’s Iron Druid books. He can use Druidic magic to shapeshift and heal himself, but only when in direct contact with the ground. He’s got some Druidic charms with energy stored up to help when that’s not possible.

Aspects:

  • Second-to-Last Living Druid
  • I’m Getting too Old for This Shit
  • Shapeshifting Adept (Fringe)
  • Veteran of Many, Many, Many Battles (Combat & Tactics)
  • Social Chameleon (Social Engineering)

The Other Members of Chapter ɸ13

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The other members of the Chapter are only sketched out as of now, but they do help provide some additional support, and also mean that since we’re all new to the game, one of the PCs doesn’t have to be the Chapter Leader.

Jungle Jack Hanna – ɸ is a Break for Me
Cipher AB-1 – What Oaxacan Glitch?
Trolley – Reformed Color out of Space
Eileen “Mara” Jade – Yes, it’s a Real Lightsaber

How’d the First Session Go?

It went well, but it was short. The setup for a quick session has you starting off with a Teaser, like the scene that happens at the beginning of Buffy or Sanctuary before the opening credits. That scene took us about 90 minutes to run, which was the bulk of the session.

We play on Wednesday nights, and I’ve started getting up at 5:30am, so going much later than 9:30pm means I’m dead on my feet. That means that I need to be more efficient about how I run things, as well as maybe being more willing to be tired on Thursday mornings. 90 minutes of game isn’t a lot.

However, what we did play was a lot of fun. I really like combining the Approach and Discipline for die rolls. Hearing “I Flashily use Research & Development to shoot my Sound Oscillating Neural Impairment Canon at the floor to try and blow a hole in it” is a nice thing to hear. It’s outrageous because that’s the nature of the game, but the pairing is descriptive and good.

Invoking Aspects to use Faith dice is different than it is in Fate, and the procedural nature of it threw us for a bit, mainly because I run Fate pretty loosely. That said, we were getting the hang of it by the end of the session.

Planning the session we really easy. The tables that are provided in the Demon Hunters book are really good, and as soon as I was rolling up the elements, the session started to come together in my mind. I had to use the “Five Minutes to Mayhem” section because I was low on time yesterday evening, and it worked well. I’m looking forward to using “Sixty Minutes to Mayhem” to plan out the whole mission.

Tying This to Valkyries

Everything that we’re doing now is informing how I hope to use these mechanics for Valkyries. I’m especially thinking about how I want to change Disciplines into Gear for Valkyries and how that change will affect the pairing of Approach+Discipline that seems to work so well in Demon Hunters. As we play more, I’ll have a better idea of how that all works. For now, I’m glad to have had the chance to see how the system functions.