Some Fate Adversary Toolkit Concepts in Savage Worlds

Since I finished reading the Fate Adversary Toolkit, I have been thinking about how to apply some of the concepts to Savage Worlds and in particular to the Deadlands Noir game I am running. There are a couple of parts to making use of this book in Savage Worlds.

The easiest import isn’t really an import, but just a different way of describing Locations (Zones), Dramatic Tasks and Chases. Dramatic Tasks and Chases are rules that have never felt like something I could just pull out without some planning ahead of time in Savage Worlds, but the discussion about Relative Zones and Conceptual Zones finally gave me a point of reference that made them make sense to me, so I think that I will be able to pull these things out a lot easier. And I have the note cards to use to help me with them.

Chases map almost directly to the concept of Relative zones and there isn’t much to say on Relative Zones other than they are abstract locations that mark position by distance from another position. So for chases, you could have a zone for your quarry, a zone near your quarry, a zone within sight of your quarry, and out of sight of your quarry. Each turn, you get to shift the positions based on the chase if you win a round during your chase, you get to move one level closer to the target, if you lose, you move one zone further away from you target.

Conceptual Zones are an interesting idea. Like Relative Zones, they are not physical locations, but can cover things like darkness, invisibility, stages in defusing a bomb, etc. With these zones, you can be in more than one conceptual space while only occupying one physical space. For example you could be In Darkness while in the warehouse. These conceptual zones can also include stages for working on a dramatic task with zones like Removed the face plate, Trace the wiring, Triggered the tamper detection, Disarmed the Bomb. And as you succeed or fail rolls, you will move through these zones until you reach the end.

The next thing that I have been thinking about applying is the different types of Enemies in a conflict. For the most part I will not make heavy use of Bosses since they are the special characters and map most directly to Wild Cards. What I will be doing in most fights is a mixture of Threats, Hitters, and Fillers. At this point I am thinking of a mix of these types with about half qualifying as Fillers, a third qualifying as Hitters, and the remainder being Threats. For the major set pieces with the big bad guys of the adventure keeping a similar ratio. These ratios will vary somewhat especially depending on the purpose the fight has in the story with most of the changes being a reduction in Threats_1 then _Hitters. This is slightly different from the advice given in the book, but I think this will work slightly better with the Savage Worlds system than what was described for Fate Core.

Now the trick to this part is how to make the Hitters and Threats. The idea that I have is to give the Hitters a one shot attack that they can make that either has a bonus to hit, or more probably does some extra damage (a one shot weird science gadget or the like). For the Threats, I have not come up with a good idea for how to model them. I don’t want to just make sure that they are hard to hurt, because that slows everything down. So I am still thinking about them.

There are more good things in this book that can be applied, but I am going to stop here for now. I would suggest looking at distractions, hazards, and countdowns specifically, but I don’t want to go into them just yet, I am still tinkering with them as ideas for upcoming sessions.


  1. I really want to be careful with the number of Threats that I include in a fight because I don’t want any fights to go on too long, and those are the type that is supposed to have staying power. Everything else is supposed to go down quickly. 
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Author: Hours without Sleep

I am a professional software tester, who has an interest in programming, computers, role-playing games, history, and reading in general. This is my third attempt at keeping a blog, and I am going to try putting all of my thoughts in one place, and see how it goes.

2 thoughts on “Some Fate Adversary Toolkit Concepts in Savage Worlds”

  1. Something you can try for “Threats” instead of making them tougher by raising their Toughness would be to give them two wounds or a Benny of their own, assuming they’re minions and not Wildcards.

    1. I like the wound idea better than the benny. These would all be minions, Wildcards would have more bells and whistles.

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