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In the years that I have been playing Fudge, one of the more difficult things that I have tried to do is finding a way that players continue to stay challenge in stories thare are more episodic instead of a one off adventure. With the way Fudge is, when players skills start reaching Superb, it is very hard for these battles do not come automatic successes for players. Without a challenge, nobody is going to be interested in playing.

It was about a year ago that I finally hit on a way that can help alleviate this type of pain for campaign settings and it has been working very well. What I did was create four new levels above Superb and did not allow players to achieve these levels. For example I create a Impressive (+4), Most Impressive (+5), Legendary (+6), and Mythic (+7). In my campaigns I made sure there were ODF and DDF abilities for weapons and defenses to help add some variety to the rolls. An example would be the Emerald Fire Dragon I created as a bad guy for my group of knights that were trying to free a kingdom.

Emerald Fire Dragon

~Attributes~

Strength: Mythic
Agility: Most Impressive
Stamina: Impressive
Intelligence: Legendary
Charisma: Impressive

~Skills~

Claws: Impressive (+2 ODF)
Frost Breath: Superb (+2 ODF)
Hide: Impressive (+3 DDF)


This dragon gave my team of four (with a bunch of superb skills) quite a hard time making them think instead of just strutting in and battling the creature. The biggest drawback that I have found (and in a way I do not consider it a drawback) is that if the player does not roll well, he could wind up being insta-killed if the campaign does not allow expansion on the amount of wound boxes that the player character has. Sir Roderick battled the dragon and went sword to claw. Sword Skill was Superb with a sword of ODF +3 and a DDF +2 (Leather armor). He rolled a -3 dropping his end result to Fair while the Dragon rolled a +3 on Claws. The Margin of Failure was a whopping 6 points plus the +1 for ODF giving a massive 9 points of damage. The armor did cut this down to 7, but that seven incapacitated him. Suffice to say, the players were very happy to have their fudge points now.

So, those are my thoughts. Do you have any other ideas on making it challenging for players when the level is getting high? If so, please share them on the fudge forums!

Comments   

# paul 2016-02-29 23:01
Great tip to expand traits for encounters, but don't forget scale :-) That ancient, gigantic Emerald Dragon also probably gains many pluses simply due to its scale vs the PCs/
+1 # JonathanS223 2016-03-01 19:51
Yeah, I kind of missed that when I was running the game too. :D Lucky though as that dragon probably would have murdered everybody. The scale is one of my favorite parts of the game as it can also make things very challenging.
+1 # paul 2016-03-01 20:18
I love scale as a game mechanic too. I think in some way it was Steffan's most innovative part of FUDGE. I use it for size/mass of course, and speed, and technology, and I also used it for intelligence in a "Things Man Was Not Meant To Know" adventure. I hope it was okay i put a plug in for Scale on your blog post - and thanks for blogging!
# JonathanS223 2016-03-01 20:37
I don't mind at all! Lately I've been stuck playing Pathfinder and I am glad to finally draw out all my fudge stuff again! There will also be more blog posts!

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